Beta'd by [info]kitty_poker1, of course.

Happy birthday, [info]snowpuppies!





I Don't Know How it Happened


by
Eyezrthewindows



Part One



"Go fuck yourself!"

"I would if that were physically possible," Spike said amiably, eyes crinkled in amusement, stirring his concoction of blood and chocolate syrup with one of Xander's good spoons.

Xander watched, horrified, as the spoon went into the white sink without so much as a rinse off under the faucet, leaving a chocolate, bloody smear that was sure to stain. Disbelief, then anger rippled over his features.

That did it. That was it. He couldn't take it anymore!

He muffled a scream of frustration with the back of one fist, then rounded on Spike, who was staring at him as if he were a fascinating piece of art he was trying to figure out. He shook an extended index finger in the vampire's direction. "That's it, Spike. I can't take it anymore! You're eating me out of house and apartment; more importantly you're ruining chocolate for me and I didn't think that would happen, like, ever."

Spike raised an eyebrow, took a drink of the sickening combination then lowered the mug to waist level. He moved his shoulders slightly. "Have you ever tried chocolate and blood?"

Xander stuttered to a stop, anger disappearing, confusion replacing it. A frown marred his forehead. "What? Yuck. No. Of course I haven't. I'm not a sicko."

The blond rolled his eyes. "Then you've no room to comment, do you? Never had it, so you shouldn't cast stones when you don't know what the ruddy hell you're going on about."

The boy growled, continuing with his rant. "You're messy. You leave wet towels all over the floor, not even just the bathroom. You drip water everywhere. The tub's always a mess. The sink always has mousse slime and hairs in it. The couch has stains from..." he shuddered visibly "...I don't know what, don't really want to know what. You leave wrappers and beer bottles and old newspapers and pizza boxes and fast food bags and containers everywhere. If I don't pick it up it starts to grow new life, Spike, and as much as I'm all for new species and life and stuff...that's gross! Why don't you ever pick up after yourself?"

Spike drank some more. A blood mustache formed at the corner of his mouth. He licked his lips but it stayed there, taunting Xander. He raised his eyebrows. "Why should I have to? You'll do it eventually. Right good little maid, you are."

"If you stay in my house you'll fucking pick up after yourself."

Spike smirked. "Not a house, is it?"

"Technically, no, but I can throw your ass out and you couldn't do a thing about it."

Spike's face lost its superior expression, his gaze narrowing. He set his now empty mug down on the counter and moved a few paces toward Xander. "I'd like to see you try, you great pouf."

Xander laughed. "Try? I wouldn't even have to try, Migraine Boy. One little pinch from you would drop you like a ton of bricks."

Spike rolled his eyes and shouldered -- gently -- past the boy to the living room.

"Where the hell are you going? We're not finished!"

"I think we are. I'm bored with this crap. I'm going to watch some telly."

Spike made to get the remote but Xander latched onto his forearm and jerked him away. "Like hell. We're not finished, fang face. I've gotta bone to pick with you."

The vampire leered and stepped closer, so close their chests brushed. Xander was immediately on guard, intimidated and more than a little disconcerted.

"Got a bloody big bone you could pick right here." Spike thrust his cock into Xander's thigh.

Xander leapt back, letting go of Spike as though he'd just become super hot. Not that Xander thought Spike was hot in any way. "You stay away from me, you undead freak."

Spike snorted. "Baby."

"Don't make with the mooshy names. They won't get you off my shit list."

Blue eyes narrowed. "Right. What'll get me off your 'shit list', then?"

Xander crossed his arms, looking decidedly unnerved. "I don't know. I don't think anything'll get you off that because it's a really bad list. There are people still on there from fifth grade."

Spike blinked at him, smiled, then reached for the remote again.

"Hey! Stop that, you undead moocher!"

"No," Spike said calmly, seating himself on the couch, stretching out, spreading his legs, making himself at home in Xander's home.

Xander growled in frustration and yanked handfuls of hair with both hands, making it stick up all over his head in unruly tufts. "Fuck off, Spike. Go bother someone else for a change. Leave me and my tv alone." He yanked the remote from Spike's hand, the element of surprise in his favour. "Aha! Now," he flipped stations, stopping on SciFi, "that's more like it."

Spike's face twisted and he went to re-take his stolen remote, but failed due to an over-zealous move that caused Xander slight pain. He went down like a felled tree, clutching the side of his head and cursing a blue streak.

Xander smirked, rubbing his wrist. "Oooh, you're the big bad, alright. Big bad puddy tat who can't hurt a fly."

Spike shoved Xander as hard as he was able, squinting through the pain echoing through his skull. "When I get this chip out--"

"Yeah, right. Like that will ever happen. You'll be stuck like this forever. Good old American workmanship at its finest. You'll be depending on us for your blood and other stuff you don't have money to pay for till we're dead and then you'll be screwed. You'll probably end up crawling on your belly to Angel for help since he's, like, your vampire daddy or something."

The blond's eyes widened, narrowed, then widened again in indignation and disbelief. His hand shook as he pointed at the boy. "You bloody take that back! Just because you're useless and your little Scooby pals forget about you all the time doesn't mean you have to take it out on me!"

Nostrils flared. "They don't forget about me...at least I have friends. Unlike someone who will remain nameless." He coughed quickly, muttering the word 'Spike' in between poorly disguised throaty noises.

"I don't need friends if they're like yours. Gits forgot about your birthday--"

"They said they were sorry! I even got a special edition Star Wars collector DVD set out of their guilty-ness!"

"--and when you were sick a fortnight ago they didn't even call when you failed to show up for one of those ruddy boring meetings that are really pointless--"

"They were busy..." Xander even started to doubt himself at this point but couldn't not defend his friends. It was a law or a rule or something.

"--demon bint left you for greener, more rich pastures. Got herself a new boyfriend already, from what I heard. Rich and handsome and willing to give her everything her little greedy heart desires. Been, what, a month at most since she blew town?"

Xander crossed his arms, sulking, lower lip sticking out about a foot. "Shut up."

"Good retaliatory remark, boy. Can see why you're just a big winner these days."

Xander grabbed Spike by his collar and flipped them around, slamming him hard into the wall separating his bedroom from the rest of the apartment. He hissed in Spike's face, "Shut. The. Fuck. Up. You don't know what you're talking about. It's all hot air out of your dead ass." He grabbed Spike's neck and tightened his hands around it.

"You know," Spike said, voice rasping as his throat was slowly crushed, "That won't kill me. Just piss me off and make it harder for me to talk." He brought his hands up and tried, without hurting the boy, to disengage him.

Xander grinned a frightening grin, hands steadily clenching harder. "I know. It'd make me feel a lot better, though. Shut you up, too."

Spike rolled his eyes. "Can choke me all you like but that won't change what a pathetic excuse for a pouf you've turned out to be with an equally path...etic....crap...life...," the vampire wheezed, eyes watering.

Xander growled, let go of the vampire's neck and rammed his head against the wall a couple of times for good measure but he didn't move from Spike's space. He leaned closer. "You know what, Spike?"

Dilated blue eyes stared into brown. "What, git?"

"I may have a really sad excuse for a life. My friends ignore me, my girlfriend left me because I couldn't satisfy her bank account and be as submissive as she wanted...but I still have one up on you."

Spike scowled and began to struggle to get away. He only succeeded in bringing their bodies even closer together, groins pressed tight, arousal obvious and unable to be hidden now. "You have shit, dopey boy. Let me go before I have to hurt you."

Xander's grin was feral. "See, that's the thing. I can hurt you. I can hurt anyone I want. I can defend myself from humans, Spike. You writhe in agony, chip firing off even if you don't mean to step on someone's toes or knock into them when you're playing pool at the Bronze. Me? I can run into anybody I want, start fights, kick some ass...whatever. I have no pain."

Spike's body went still, face expressionless. If he'd been in his right mind he'd have torn Xander's little speech to shreds but he wasn't at that moment.

"You little bastard! If you had any idea of what I could do to you...I get this chip out there's going to be a confrontation. You can bloody well guarantee it!" Spike snarled, twisting in Xander's grasp.

Xander's eyes slid halfway shut, teeth biting into his bottom lip. He abruptly released Spike, only to force him around so that Spike's face was pressed uncomfortably against the wall and Xander's groin was snugly fitted into the crevice of his ass.

Xander ground the erection he'd been sporting pretty much since they'd begun fighting into Spike's firm ass. He breathed in the vampire's ear, eliciting a full body shudder. "Is that so?"

"Yeah," Spike rasped, the fight suddenly leaving him. His head dropped forward against the wall.

Xander must've felt the surrender too, for he let Spike go and stood back a half step, just far enough. Too far, in Spike's opinion, because the vampire turned around, grabbed hold of him and yanked him forcibly back in place.

Blue eyes glittered up at him, lust blatant and shining in their depths. It was only a split second but it was enough.

One minute they were panting and staring each other down, the next Xander had shoved his tongue down Spike's throat and the vampire was making such a sweet whimpering noise in the back of his throat that Xander just had to release his mouth and suck on that supple, pale length.

Spike bared his neck willingly, begging silently for more as he clutched at every available piece of the boy he could get his hands on. He ground his cock into Xander's, gasped and panted for more and finally grew weary of Xander's teasing and jerked the hot mouth back to his own.

It was lewd and hot and passionate and very confusing but Xander didn't care. He rotated his hips, ground his erection into Spike's and held the vampire's head still with a handful of gel-stiffened hair that crunched between his fingers.

Spike grabbed Xander's ass, clutching at the clenching muscles, kneading them.

They somehow made it to Xander's bedroom and then got naked. Spike was desperate and volatile and rough and perfect and God, Xander was enjoying this far more than he should have.

Xander fucked Spike deep and hard and fast, then slower, and made it last.

Spike moaned and arched and ground back into each of the brunet's thrusts, fingers buried in a handful of sheets, face smashed into the mattress he was fucked into.

The bed creaked and rocked and bounced and banged against the wall.

Xander pounded himself into the vampire harder and faster and then when he came it was like angels singing and volcanos erupting and the polar ice caps melting. Cool, tight flesh fluttered and grasped his pulsing cock, drawing out his orgasm, and he clenched Spike's hips, leaving fingerprints on perfect, smooth pale flesh.

Spike felt the heat flush into him. It made him gasp and shudder and tense and grind himself on the still hard cock deep inside him. Then he brought his left hand up, stroked himself a few times and came all over Xander's sheets.

Spike collapsed face down in his own cum, panting raggedly, with the boy still intimately attached breathing a similar uneven rhythm.

Eventually, they slept.


~*~*~*~*~


They fucked three more times during that night.

Spike rode Xander with wild abandon, whispering lewd things about cowboys and ropes and spurs while he pinched nipples, rolled the boy's balls, massaged his chest, played with himself.

Xander forced the vampire out of his bed and screwed him against a nearby, handy wall, smashing the vampire's face into it with one hand while the other ruthlessly stripped Spike's cock. Pounded into him for what seemed like an eternity, slow and steady and hard; those marathon sessions with Anya had been good for something, after all.

The last time, Xander let Spike fuck him. It went slowly, and there was some pain -- for both of them -- but when Spike was finally able to slide into him it was a revelation. He was being filled and consumed at the same time and as he stared up at Spike while he was fucked he met blue eyes filled with...something that was directed at him and for once it wasn't malice or anger or a well-formed sneer or smirk.

It was want.

Xander's eyes fluttered shut, he arched, grasped onto Spike's biceps and pressed him closer with his heels as he came between them.

Spike gasped, bowed back, tensing as he shot his orgasm inside the brunet. Then he slumped forward.

They panted, they disengaged, they wrapped themselves in each other and they slept the rest of the night.


~*~*~*~*~


Xander stared up at his ceiling, a blanket of warm vampire -- he was mooching Xander's body heat now -- covering him from shoulder to toe.

I slept with Spike. Slept with as in FUCKED and then...cuddled with him afterward.

Am still cuddling with him.

I repeatedly fucked him. REPEATEDLY.

It was good. I liked it. Enjoyed it even.

Oh, God, I fucked Spike!

What the hell was THAT? It's like I had no control over myself and...BAM, oh look that's Spike's cock why don't I let it stab me over and over and then cum like explosives were shoved up my ass.

Spike's COCK was shoved up my ass! I can't believe I let him stick that there. That's just...

Actually, it was pretty damn nice, pain and soreness aside.


Xander froze as Spike mumbled something that sounded suspiciously like 'peas and carrots make the marmalade taste more like apricots' and then shifted against him.

Spike's cock rubbed against Xander's hip, hardening more as it came in contact with warm flesh.

Xander bit his lip, trying to make his own prick stay flaccid and where it was. He was not reacting again. That was a brief foray into madness that he wouldn't take again because it was...wrong and...just wrong.

Spike smacked his lips and suddenly opened his eyes, lifting his head to stare blankly down at the brunet. He frowned, then suddenly his eyes widened.

"You and me buggered all night, didn't we?"

Xander swallowed, laughing weakly. "The pain in my ass says yes."

"Pain in my ass says ditto," Spike said bitterly, eyes dropping from Xander's. His gaze rose back to the boy's, suddenly bright and serious and piercing. He jabbed a finger in Xander's chest, hard enough to hurt Xander but not enough to hurt him. "We must never speak of this. No one is to find out. This never happens again. We'll just pretend it never happened, yeah?"

Xander relaxed, sighing as relief washed over him. "Thank God."





Part Two

He stayed away from Spike for a week -- it hadn't really been hard; he hadn't left his apartment and Spike hadn't shown up unexpectedly so he, too, was holding to their tenuous pact of pretending it didn't happen. It was a few days after 'the night' when the others realised he wasn't showing up at Scooby meetings and called him in for one.

He scowled and grumbled and moaned and groaned -- to himself -- before he finally showed up at the Magic Box and slumped into one of the hard wooden chairs. He bit his lip as residual tingling shot through his ass -- he was still feeling Spike there even after so long.

He fought the need to fidget, to cruelly remind himself of the act he should never have committed with such an asshole of a...vampire.

He'd finally calmed himself down by the time the 'meeting' was under way. He was seated 'reading' a book he'd been handed by Giles, though Giles knew he wouldn't actually do any reading and had given him a bemused, knowing look as he'd tossed it to him.

Xander had scowled but taken the book and then remained silent, staring down at words he didn't care to read, most of which he wouldn't have understood anyway.

Buffy and Willow were doing actual research, Buffy skimming through texts about some demon she'd glimpsed last night on patrol, Willow on her trusty computer, surfing websites. Tara was sitting beside the red-head, hair cascading down in front of her to hide her face because that was what she did -- she hid from them all because she was so damned shy. Giles was poring over the contents of his shop's books, despite the fact that he'd specifically called the meeting in the first place.

Xander didn't find that fair. Though, he wasn't doing research of his own and wasn't really expected to...why was he needed to be there again? Did they want to torture him with this crap?

Probably, he thought glumly, falling back from his slump over the table and book he wasn't reading to rest against the hard seat-back of his chair.

He let his head fall back and stared up at the ceiling sightlessly. The bell over the door jingled merrily, announcing someone's entrance. He really hoped it was an actual customer but when he raised his head to look...he nearly bit his lip in two, holding back the helpless moan of disappointment that welled up inside him.

Spike. Spike, who was sauntering around the store like he owned it and everyone inside, smoking and looking every inch the beautiful badass that he knew he was.

Xander fought the urge to lean forward and bang his head against the table. He barely contained the whimper dying to escape his throat, forcing his gaze back down to the book he'd been 'studying' earlier. He'd just ignore Spike and Spike would ignore him and that would be that.

It was simple.

He ignored Spike when the vampire slouched dramatically against the counter, legs spread wide, shoulders back, one hand busy with a cigarette and the other resting in a pocket. He ignored the name-calling and the insults thrown back and forth between Buffy and Spike; they were necessary, it allowed them both to blow off steam without either one getting hurt despite the fact Buffy could wipe the floor with Spike and the vampire couldn't do a damn thing about it without tearing pain ripping through his brain in the process.

Giles refereed, Buffy got sulky, pouting with her arms crossed over her breasts because Giles actually took Spike's side on this particular occasion -- and wasn't that a sign that the world was ending? -- while Spike smirked smugly, crushing his smoked cigarette out not on the counter or the floor or one of Giles' important books as he normally would, just to piss him off. Spike rubbed it out on the bottom of his boot, then tossed the butt into the trash behind the counter.

Well. Apparently, if you're nice to Spike he's nice back. Who'd'a thunk it?

Xander continued to ignore everyone and everyone pretty much did the same thing because that was what they always did. He was behind the scenes, in the background, not integral to the cogs and gears of the Slayer machine.

It made him feel sad, bad, other words that rhymed with those two and a lot that didn't but there wasn't much he could do about it because he really wasn't a super hero. He wasn't a witch, he wasn't a watcher, he wasn't a slayer, he wasn't screwing said slayer and he wasn't a vampire.

He pointedly ignored the tiny voice inside him that said he'd screwed a vampire. That didn't count.

He was just Xander Harris, all American normal boy, who'd gotten caught up in the supernatural aspects of living on the hellmouth with super powered friends.

It was daunting sometimes but he plugged through, lending a hand when he was able, but mostly staying out of the way because it really sucked when he got in the way and fucked things up. He got yelled at when that happened.

So he'd just as soon not get in the way unless someone asked. It worked out better for everyone that way.

He was brought out of his ruminations by Willow as she excitedly proclaimed she'd found their man, er, demon.

"Serpential Exploitatus."

"Gezuntheit," Xander said.

Spike snorted, rolling his eyes. "That's the name of the ruddy demon, lack-brain."

"Shut the hell up, Spike. No one asked you."

"Both of you shut up," Giles muttered, shaking his head and rubbing the bridge of his nose after he'd taken his glasses off. He sidled up behind Willow, leaning over her shoulder to peer at the computer screen. "Buffy, is this the one you were referring to?"

Buffy dropped the stake she'd been playing with, taunting Spike with really, and got up too. She looked at the picture and the description. "Yep. Big snakey looking thing. Though, the one I saw was wearing leather and lace. It was a fashion nightmare. Its scales clashed with its outfit."

"You're one to talk, Slayer. You've got the fashion sense of a cheap whore."

"And you've got the fashion sense of a dead man from twenty plus years ago. Shut up, Spike!"

"Make me, bint."

Xander's jaw flexed. "Spike, leave her alone. She's trying to do what she does best. Well, the stuff that works up to it, anyway."

"Thank you, Xander." Buffy smiled brightly then returned her gaze to the screen, pointing out things about the serpent demon, talking with Willow and Giles, not ignoring Tara so much as Tara scooting slightly away and letting everything happen around her, as she normally did.

Spike's eyes glowed yellow for a moment. He lit another cigarette and blew the smoke in Xander's direction once he'd removed himself from his position at the counter and walked closer to the boy. Xander coughed, waving a hand in front of his face and Spike licked his lips, smirking.

"Poor little lamb. You've got horrible taste in clothes and you've got no talent at this slaying gig. Why don't you just run along home and cry in your sippy cup. We'll all be better off if you're not around when this thing is," he said, idly pointing his smoking cigarette at the others still gathered around the computer talking, oblivious to Spike and Xander's conversation.

Xander felt a fire build in his belly and scorch outward, encompassing his entire body. His eyes flashed. "I don't need this," he announced, getting up and heading toward the door. When everyone else's eyes followed him, he said, "You guys don't need me for this, right? I gotta get up early for work in the morning anyway. I'll catch you later."

He exited the shop, seething with anger, insides boiling with it. His fists clenched tight, then he drew out a stake in case he happened upon something that needed killing. He almost hoped he would come across something. Something that perhaps wouldn't be so good at the fighting and mayhem.


~*~*~*~*~


As it happened, he did find something that needed a good staking. Except. Yeah, there was an except.

Except, it was a vampire who seemed to know Karate and was doing all these cool moves that Xander would've admired had he not been in this situation and the vampire hadn't been a vampire.

He was lying face down on the dirty alley street with the vampire straddling his body, pressing him down, angling his head to the side so it could get a good bite in before he really knew what was happening.

Just as it was about to bite down, "Oi! Wanker!"

Xander never thought he'd be glad to see Spike, not that he actually saw the blond vampire, he just heard him. He slumped with relief and his vampire captor, potential murderer, let him go to step up and take the Spike challenge.

"Hey, you ruined a good meal, man. What's up with that? You're not helping your fellow vampire here. That's kinda rude, actually. Why'd you go and do a dumbass thing like that?"

Spike snorted, reached into his pocket and, as Xander rolled over ready to view the Street Fighter Match of the Century, Spike deftly and easily and very embarrassingly for the Karate expert tossed a stake straight into the vampire's heart.

"Damn," was all the staked vampire said before he turned to dust before Xander's eyes.

Xander collapsed onto the ground, panting, pulse racing, every part of him surging with fear and adrenaline. "I never thought I'd ever say this but...thanks."

Spike waved a hand. "Don't mention it. You needed a good helping, you inept little bastard. If I hadn't followed you, you'd be pushing up daisies by now. Only not so much the pushing as the moving aside and crawling out of your grave."

Xander forgot about his previous life or death situation and shot to his feet, shaking with anger. "Hey! It's not my fault the dude knew Karate. He surprised me. I'd've staked him. Eventually."

"I really doubt that," Spike murmured, lighting a cigarette and savouring a few lungfuls of smoke before lowering his hand and the smoldering butt to his side.

Xander stepped into Spike's personal space, glaring at the blond. "Oh, I do. I know tricks...and stuff. I'd have come out alive in the end. Which is more than I could say for that guy."

Spike snorted derisively, puffed on his smoke and blew it in Xander's face. "If I didn't know how incredibly crappy a fighter you are, I'd almost believe that."

Xander knocked the cigarette from Spike's hand, surprised him by slamming him against the alley wall and crushed his lips to Spike's.

The vampire didn't fight so much as clutch and pull him closer. He opened his mouth, thrust his tongue against Xander's and moaned when the boy shoved a leg between his own.

Xander panted into Spike's mouth, pulled on stiff hair hard so Spike tilted his head to the side and he'd have more access to that deadly, expert mouth as he thrust against him. He worked a hand between their bodies and undid the front of both their pants, pulled their cocks free and began to stroke in time with their thrusting tongues.

Spike moaned, widened his stance and added a hand to the mix, expertly lacing their fingers together to work them both at the same time.

It didn't take long for them to get to the boiling point. They moved together, thrust and moaned and jerked and cried out and then came all over each other and the clothes they were wearing.

Xander's head fell against the wall over Spike's shoulder as he panted, still trembling from his orgasm.

He couldn't believe he'd done it again.

Spike closed his eyes and sighed, smelling the strong remnants of their arousal and climaxes around them.

Bugger.


~*~*~*~*~


"We've gotta be strong. We've got to stay away from each other. We've got to not be alone together anymore because that's bad, really, really bad."

"I bloody well agree. All right. So, I'll go off on me own on patrol. You can go with the slayer or something. In the Magic Box we'll stay in opposite corners. No fuss, no muss."

Xander ran a hand through his hair, finished doing up the front of his pants and moved far away from Spike. "Yeah, sounds good."

Spike smoked a cigarette, eyes narrowed through the smoke at Xander. "I don't know what the hell this is but it's probably all your fault."

"Mine?! How is it mine?" Xander exclaimed, eyes wide.

"Oh, it just is. You're a ruddy disaster waiting to happen. You're lucky you haven't gotten dead before now or got your little buddies killed."

Xander snarled. "You bastard."

Spike smirked.

The brunet knocked the cigarette from Spike's hand for the second time that night, stalking forward to crush Spike between the wall and himself.


~*~*~*~*~


Xander panted, leaning heavily against one wall of the alley while Spike leaned against the one opposite him. "Okay, we can do this. Just...you stay over there. And don't talk. I'm gonna...go now and we have to abide by the rules we went over before. That was the last time. Really."

Spike stared at him, lips pressed into a tight line but trembling at one corner as they tried to lift with amusement. Surprisingly, he didn't say anything and Xander hurried out of the alley, doing up the front of his pants again.

Yeah, they could do this. They could stay away from each other, ignore the heat and desire and want between them, and it would be okay.


~*~*~*~*~


"Spike, you take Xander. I need to go with Willow and Tara because the snakey demon needs magicky stuff to destroy it. If you find it, use the walkie-talkie and we'll come and kill it."

Xander groaned, barely restraining himself from leaping over the table and choking Buffy for her crappy pairing up ability. "Can't I go with you guys?" he whined. "I swear, I'll be really quiet and you won't even know I'm there."

"No, I'm sorry. We need two teams and you're going with Spike. It's only for a few hours. You can go back to your sci-fi marathon afterward, 'k?"

"Yeah, okay," he grumbled, glancing at the vampire out of the corner of his eye.

Spike's body was tense, his expression carefully blank. That boded well.


~*~*~*~*~


They remained silent during their patrol. Buffy found the demon, Willow and she and Tara took care of it. Spike and he continued on a regular patrol. Spike killed a few vampires and a pathetic demon who didn't even look as if it could fight, much less defend itself from Spike's attack. Xander felt kind of sorry for it when he watched its eyes tear up, cloud over then lose focus as it died.

"Why did you have to kill it, Spike? It wasn't doing anything to you. It looked sad...kinda human. Except for the horns and scaley skin and stuff, I mean."

Spike snorted, wiping the knife he'd withdrawn from somewhere in the folds of his duster on the demon's hide. He stood up and tucked it away again. "Yeah, well, you don't know shit. We're supposed to take out demons and that's what I just did. Whether they're innocent or not isn't the priority here."

Xander jerked the vampire back as he made to leave. Spike stared down at the hand holding his arm pointedly. Xander didn't move it. "Innocence does matter, Spike. It's wrong if you kill innocent things. If it's demon or not isn't the point. The evilness factor is."

The vampire narrowed his eyes. "I don't give a rat's toss about evil or no. A demon's a demon and since I can't kill humans anymore...they'll do in a bloody pinch. Now, let me go, you ponce."

"No," Xander hissed.

Spike raised his eyebrows, then coyly fluttered his eyelashes. "Want a repeat performance, pet, eh?"

Xander jumped back as if shocked. "What? No! Get away from me."

"Knew that'd do it." Spike turned and walked away, duster flaps fluttering dramatically in the breeze.

Xander tried to calm his racing heart and shallow breathing, then he followed.

It wasn't difficult to stay away from each other this time. They were both too pissed and distant to break past that into sex.


~*~*~*~*~


For the next several days, Xander and Spike managed to keep away from each other. They became quiet and withdrawn but then no one really noticed because they didn't seek out Scooby meetings. Xander stayed at his place when he wasn't working and he assumed Spike went out patrolling on his own and lazed around his crypt drinking when he wasn't doing that. He begged off meetings, saying he was work-exhausted.

It was a pitiful existence and both hated it but it was something they had to do to get past this little thing between them. No good could come of their union so they would repress it until it disappeared altogether.

That was easier said than done, of course, but they kept at it until after two weeks they could tolerate each other's presence as long as they didn't get too close.

Then, it was back to Scooby meetings and things were back to normal -- mostly.


~*~*~*~*~


"Xander, could you go get us some coffee and donuts?"

Xander sighed, snapped the book he'd actually been trying to read shut and stood up with a forced smile. "Sure, Buff. What does everyone want?"

He gathered orders and money and then headed off with a sigh. Sometimes he hated being the donut boy.

He bought a box of donuts, got a carrying case for their coffee and started back.

"Well, well, well, what've we here? It's the donut boy."

Xander sighed, shoulders slumping. He didn't turn. "Spike, you sound drunk. Go away and sleep it off, or whatever it is you do, and leave me alone." He started walking again but was brought up short when Spike grabbed him and pulled him forcibly into an alley.

He quickly put down the donuts and drinks before he spilled them and rounded angrily on Spike. "What the hell is your problem, Spike?"

Spike rocked on his feet, fingers clamping down on Xander's arms. He got in the boy's face. "You. You are my problem. It's all I can bloody think about, dream about; you've cast some spell on me, haven't you, boy? Demon magnet's right. I can't seem to stay away from you...it all comes back to you..." He leaned forward to scent Xander's neck, then licked a line up to the earlobe and began to suck on it.

Xander froze, swallowing hard as Spike nuzzled his neck and all the anger drained from him, replaced with tendrils of arousal. He wasn't going to do this, wasn't going to let Spike do this to him. He pushed the vampire away -- the hardest thing he'd had to do in a long time -- and retrieved his purchases. "Look, Spike, I don't have time for this and we said we'd quit doing...that. I'm not going to do this with you anymore, okay? I can't."

He walked away, leaving a forlorn Spike in the darkness of the alley staring after him.

Xander ignored the tiny voice inside that tried its very best to tell him to go back, that by going back to the vampire he'd get a really good bout of sex.

Sex wasn't always everything.




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