Who Wants to Live Forever


by
Metaforgirl



Part Sixteen

Spike had been pacing the living room, watching out the long picture window for an hour when Brown’s van pulled up, and deposited Willow and Xander on the curb. Emotionally volatile already, the events of the past twenty-four hours had pushed Spike into a whole new crazy place. His imagination rocketed between blissful memories of his Xander of the night before, writhing beneath him, biting him and holding him, and painful, paranoid jealousy. Underlying all this was fear for Xander’s well being, and an almost irresistible drive to find his mate and assure himself of his safety.

His mate. He thought of Xander automatically that way, had done for several hours. As he watched the man leaning through the window, exchanging words with the driver, he felt the uncurling of some deep acquisitive need. He could suddenly visualize quite clearly licking Xander’s body all over, running his hands over him, gathering up his scent. He groaned with frustration and turned another lap as the pair dawdled on the sidewalk, yammering away. The driver of the vehicle, a small dark boy with thick curly hair, came down out of the door and suddenly grabbed his mate in a quick manly hug. Spike’s demon almost blinded him with its immediate possessive rage. He stood quite still, barely controlling the urge to dash out into the sunlight. His jealousy remarked on the young man’s youth, lovely eyes, smooth maple syrup skin. His obvious humanity. He noted the warmth with which he smiled at Xander, his white teeth flashing. His mate, his Xander, leant over the boy, ‘too close too close’ laughing also. He slapped his shoulder and squeezed, and Spike flinched. “Mine,” he growled unconsciously, his hands clenching. Xander stepped away from the boy and the van, and walked towards the house with Willow. Spike struggled to contain himself, to avoid rushing to the door.

Xander followed Willow into the house, thinking about the kids driving away in the van. My fault, he admitted to himself. I left them, they were hurt. It was my fault. He couldn’t think of any remedy. Time sweeps away your options; your only choice left is to deal. He had felt his guilt all morning. Punishing himself in part by forcing the awareness of Spike, the longing to return to the house and his vampire, by pushing that down and staying away as long as he could bear. As they walked up to the door, he released the hold on himself and the bite on his neck pulsed as he felt a wave of intense desire. He quite suddenly had to have his vampire. Had to see him, touch him, taste him. It was as strong a physical need as hunger, and his hand shook with it as he grabbed the doorknob.

Spike was waiting for them in the living room. He leant against the mantel, affecting extreme boredom. Xander felt a throb of desire and barely restrained the urge to rush to him. His eyes locked with Spike’s. The look in those blue orbs was daunting. Lust, not a little anger, agitation. Spike did not look happy. Xander froze. Torn between the need to touch Spike and an impulse to run from him.

“Spike! Good, I wanted to talk to you!” said Willow, striding in past Xander and effectively blocking Spike from his view. She turned to Xander and assessed him clinically. “You too, Xander. Come in. Talk.” Amazingly Xander seemed to hear her and obeyed. Willow stood solidly in the center of the room, arms crossed, as she regarded the two tense men. “So, first, Xander. You owe me about a thousand times for every ‘girl on girl’ remark you’ve ever made.” She held up one finger. “Second, as your official best friend you owe me details.” She wiggled her eyebrows, “you owe me lots of details.” Xander turned and gaped at her, as did Spike. Willow grinned, got your attention now, huh? “Spike,” she said to the wide-eyed vampire, “I owe you a shovel talk.” Spike raised an eyebrow in puzzlement, ‘shovel talk?’ he mouthed silently. “But finally,” and Willow’s light-hearted tone dropped away. She looked from one to the other man seriously. “We need to talk about the his and his hickeys you guys are wearing.”

She noticed the simultaneous reaction as both men involuntarily reached to touch their throats. “If you weren’t my friends, and if I didn’t care about you, I’d be rubbing my hands in Witchy glee over the research and publishing possibilities here,” she said matter of factly. “As it is.” She stopped and sighed. “As it is, I’m just worried.”

Xander felt his heart pounding as the blood rushed into his face. During his confession to Willow the morning before, he had not mentioned the whole same-gender issue. He was still uncomfortable with it, and not ‘out’ so to speak. And although he knew Willow could not have cared less about his sexual proclivities, having her notice the vampire bite was a little like the time she’d found Anya’s sex toys under the bed. He felt exposed and vulnerable. He looked again at Spike. He suddenly wanted the vampire’s touch so much.

Spike gave him another intense look. He saw the flush in Xander’s face and heard his heart rate jump. His jealousy dissolved in an urge to comfort, and he took a few hesitant steps. One hand reached to brush knuckles against Xander’s arm. Xander gave him a grateful look.

Willow watched the two men struggle not to touch each other. Xander’s hand was stroking his neck again, as it had been all morning. She doubted he was conscious of it. She shook her head. “What were you two thinking?”

Two male heads turned to her, identical in their surprise and ‘hand in the cookie jar’ expressions.

“Sorry,” two male voices said in unison.

“Spike?” Willow bit her lip and thought. Spike rubbed a hand through his hair, wincing uneasily. Xander impulsively picked up his other hand, gave it a squeeze.

“Sorry, Red, really. I shouldn’t have. I know. I’m an arsehole. I just … if I tell you I got caught up in the moment, you’re gonna do somethin’ painful to me, ain’t ya?”

“What do you know about this?”

“Nothin’.” He squeezed Xander’s hand apologetically. “Xander told me about it.” He looked away grimacing. “Didn’t know till afterwards that something had happened.”

Xander looked surprised. “What happened?”

Spike goggled at him. “Haven’t you noticed anything? Anything a little more unusual?”

“No. Not really.” Xander was bewildered by Spike’s expression of astonishment. “What unusualness are you talking about?”

Spike was thoughtful. “Maybe it’s just me,” he considered softly, “bloody foolish Spike.” He smiled sheepishly at Xander. “I can’t stop thinkin’ about you, pet,” he admitted uneasily. “Feeling overprotective and …” he hesitated, “and really fucking jealous.”

“Of me?”

“Yeah, sorry Xan.”

“But that’s not unusual. I feel like that all the time.” He grinned at Spike and added gently, “Always have, I guess.”

Spike stood happily stunned. He stepped into Xander’s embrace as the other man wrapped an arm around him and let his head drop onto the warm broad shoulder. Xander stroked his head for a minute. Behind them, Willow cleared her throat. The two men leapt backwards, but not far. Xander blushed crimson.

“Sorry, Wills.”

“Oh, I don’t think you need to apologize,” said Willow gruffly. “But I meant that about the best friend sharing, Mister.” When Xander looked up, she winked lasciviously.

“Ew, Willow.”

Willow laughed. She found a chair and sat down. “Okay, so Spike hasn’t heard anything and Xander and I have only read some wacko Watcher’s journal.” She sighed and scrabbled in a bag for a pad and pen. “I think we’d better go at this methodically.”

Xander stared. “You’re going to interview us.”

Willow nodded. “I think it’s necessary,” she twinkled at him, “it pains me to admit.”

“Willow!” protested Xander, “some things are private.”

She giggled. “Yes, yes, I know, Xander. For goddess sake, I really am not going to ask those kind of questions.”

Spike sat down and leaned forward earnestly. He took Xander’s hand. “Xan’s got a lot of energy all of a sudden, Red. More than a vampire. If you know what I mean.” He looked away uncomfortably. Willow met Xander’s eye and smirked as he reddened. “And he was shakin’ and cold and wired afterwards. Like he had some kinda drug in his system.”

Willow looked concerned. “Shaking?”

“Yeah. I was worried; it was kinda like blood loss shock. Ya know, sometimes I would see it if I …” he paused and looked from one wincing human to the other. “Never mind.”

“I felt great, Willow,” Xander assured her. “I still do.” He realized with surprise. “I feel really, really good.” They exchanged looks. “Better than I have in a long time.”

“We need to get you to the clinic, Xander.”

“Yeah, maybe,” Xander said thoughtfully.

“Clinic. The doctor? Why? What’s wrong?” Spike was beginning to panic.

Willow looked at Xander. He avoided her gaze for a minute then looked up and nodded. “I’ll tell him.”

“What?” Spike was looking from one serious face to another. He took Xander’s hand again. Xander looked down. “I’m sick, Spike,” he said simply. “I have an incurable disease. I have the HIV virus.”

Spike absorbed this slowly, things not quite impacting. “Your blood tasted weird…” he remembered.

“Yeah,” said Xander. “That would figure. It’s blood transmitted.”

“People,” Spike paused and swallowed, “people been dyin’ from that.”

“Yeah.”

“There’s treatment,” Willow chipped in, “Xander has medication.”

Spike looked at her and nodded imperceptibly. He looked back at Xander.

“How long have you had it?”

“Don’t know. Found out a year ago.”

“A year,” Spike repeated slowly. “How sick are you, Xander?”

Xander shrugged, looking downward. He could feel Spike’s focus on the top of his head, but still couldn’t bear to look up at him.

“How’d you get it?”

Xander clenched his jaw and looked straight into Spike’s eyes. “Whoring around,” he said distinctly.

Xander watched as Spike’s careful and clever mind slowly stepped down the path of understanding. Xander saw it in Spike’s eyes when mental dots connected. “Because of me…” breathed Spike.

“Whoa. No no no, Spike, don’t go there…”

“Because of what I did. Before.”

“What I wanted you to do.”

Spike’s gaze had turned inward. Xander bit his lip and desperately tried to think of the right words.

“Before?” Willow’s sharp voice cut in. “What happened ‘before’?”

Xander spoke directly to Spike. “Not because of what happened, Spike,” he ground out, “because I couldn’t admit things to myself. Because I had to drink to hide it from myself … because I’m such a fucking coward.”

“Because of me.”

“Fuck no!” Xander cried fiercely.

“Xander?” Willow asked again, “what are you talking about?”

Xander ground his teeth. God, he thought suddenly, Mary would love this. “Before I left,” he said, “Spike and I were …” he shook his head. Comprehension lit Willow’s eyes, then compassion. “Oh, Xander…”

“Fuck buddies,” said Spike meanly.

“No, Spike. More than that.”

“Not what you said.”

Willow took a breath to speak, but stopped at a look from Xander. “Wills,” he asked quietly, “lemmee talk to Spike alone, ‘kay?”

Willow nodded and left the room. Xander waited for her to leave.

“Christ, Spike. What are you doing?”

Spike withdrew his hand from Xander’s. “Why did you come here Xander?” he asked slowly.

Xander was puzzled, “Dawn…”

“Not Dawn. How sick are you, Xander?” Spike’s voice was icy. Xander studied him. He had seen this face before. It was unreadable, but the sixth sense he had felt blossoming inside him all day was buzzing with warning.

“I’ve been lucky,” he said carefully.

“You dying?” Spike’s voice broke, he looked away from Xander and out the window.

Xander reached again for Spike’s hand, the vampire pulled away. Xander felt the beginning of panic.

Spike was looking out the window as if he saw some horrible revelation out there. “I thought you …” he shuddered. “Meant everything to me, it did.” There were tears in his voice.

“Spike, it meant something to me, too.”

“What?” Spike looked at him again, his eyes were begging, “what did it mean to you, Xander?”

Xander gazed beseechingly at those pain filled eyes and couldn’t speak. He knew he needed to tell Spike how important the past two days had been to him, he knew that he needed to show Spike his feelings, but he couldn’t. He needed Spike to touch him again, he needed to be held, before he could speak of those things. He needed to be within the safety of love and acceptance before he could whisper words that he barely had the courage to say to himself. He couldn’t say those things out loud in this silent room to someone whose face was turned away, who wouldn’t even take his hand. Spike regarded him for a moment; Xander saw his eyes shutter closed. The vampire turned his head away again.

“Convenient,” said Spike evenly.

“What?”

“I’m convenient.” Spike still stared out the window. “Can’t catch a disease, won’t care about that. Easy. No mess.” He stopped; his voice became rough. “And you knew I wouldn’t say no, you knew I couldn’t say no…” his voice faded and he clenched his jaw.

Xander stared in outrage. “What the hell are you saying?”

“When were you going to tell me?”

“Spike, this is so hard.” Xander was desperate. There was too much here for him to handle. He had barely gotten a grip on his feelings and now he felt he was being asked to explain them. Spike seemed angry and Xander wasn’t even sure why.

“Not convenient, then?” Spike tilted his head carefully and contemplated the window. “Too bad, then. Must have been a mistake.”

“No, Spike.” Xander angrily felt the tears rising in his throat. He reached for Spike’s hand again, needing the comfort, the reassurance. But Spike drew away from him, his posture rigid. “Spike. Geez,” said Xander pathetically, “stop pulling away from me.”

“Shouldn’t have let you,” said Spike to himself. “I knew.”

“Spike!” Xander was torn between hurt and anger. “Stop it! Please. Stop shutting me out.” He put his head in his hands and rested his arms on his knees. “I’m sorry,” he said softly. “Okay, I’m sorry. I didn’t think you’d care.”

“Convenient.”

“Fuck you!”

“Shouldn’t have.”

Xander felt the blow physically. He gasped. “Spike.” The vampire turned sharply at that. For a moment Xander saw him crumbling. Compassion and worry and pain, then the steel reappeared.

“You should have left me in that crypt.”

“What?”

“Dust by now. Everybody better off.” Spike stood and walked quickly from the room. Xander leapt up, but Spike turned and shot him a look that held him off. Spike strode out. Xander heard him pound up the stairs and then slam his bedroom door, followed by the loud thunk of the bolt as he locked it.


~*~*~*~*~


“Spike.” Xander had been sitting outside the vampire’s door for the last hour. He hadn’t heard movement inside for some time. He was so overcome with worry he felt like he was going to heave, “Please talk to me, Spike. I’ve gotta know you’re alright.” His voice rose piteously. For the thousandth time in the last ten minutes his mind's eye presented him with possible dusted vampire scenarios. He drew in a breath. “Spike. Dammit!” There was no answer. Xander played his ace. “Spike,” he said in a loud clear voice. “If you don’t fucking answer me I’m gonna have Willow break down the door.”

Silence. Then, “Fuck off,” came quite distinctly from inside.

Xander leaned his head back against the door jamb, tears of relief suddenly pressing against his eyes. “Thank god. Thank god,” he whispered.

“Spike,” he said to the closed door. “How would you feel if I shut you out like this?” Xander sat and thought, “Like I can’t know if you’re alright?” Xander chewed his lip. “You claimed me, Spike,” he said sadly. “How can you shut me out?” Xander had said the last words so softly he hadn’t expected a response. But he had forgotten about vampiric hearing.

“Shouldn’t have done that, either,” came from behind the door.

Xander felt he had been slapped across the chest. His hand rose to his mark, and tears and anger warred inside him. The anger won. “Well, fuck you too, asshole!” he screamed at the door. He rose shakily to his feet, and hit the door once, hard, with his fist. “Fuck you and fuck off, too, Spike!” And Xander turned and headed downstairs. He needed a fucking drink.


~*~*~*~*~


Spike lay on his back on the floor and glared into the dusty air above him. His anger was so all-encompassing it awed him. He could have happily killed anything at the moment, himself most easily of all. It was a truly impressive rage. It included the gods as well as mortals and a host of unnaturals in between. He began by blaming himself, but he was too small a vessel to hold all his anger. He blamed all mortals, for being so fragile. He thought achingly of his Xander, lying beneath him as his demon claimed him. His Xander in ecstasy, thrusting against him and crying out. His Xander, tight and warm and pulsing around Spike, and he thought once again of all those other unknown men, and the anger flared and turned against Xander. He remembered the denial and pain he had suffered because Xander would not let himself admit that he wanted Spike. He imagined all those strangers, Xander embracing them, fucking them, loving them, when he had denied and vilified Spike. And then Xander had finally come back. When he knew he was going to die, he came back. To open Spike up again. To make Spike love him again, to create this amazing bond between them, all the time knowing he was going to leave. Spike closed his eyes and felt mind-bending rage.

He laid there for some time, consumed by his anger, letting it wash him out to a place where he was only a demon. He stayed there for a long time. When he opened his eyes again, the dust motes floating above him were unmoving. The sun had settled outside and cool grey air hung still above his unbreathing lips. He thought of his Xander, his mate, out there somewhere in the darkening night. Knowing he was going to die. Knowing that Spike hated him and knowing that he was going to die. Spike closed his eyes and saw his mate again. Lying on him and loving him and making stupid jokes, knowing he was going to die and still loving him. Spike felt the last of his anger melt away, and was filled only with longing and fear for Xander.

Spike rolled off his back and stood. He remembered the last words they had exchanged and felt a surge of guilt. He had to find him. He ran out of his room and downstairs. No Xander, no Willow. Giles in the kitchen making tea.

“Rupert!”

“Ah, Spike, would you like a cup of tea?”

“Ta very much mate, but no. You seen the whelp?”

“Xander went out.”

“Where to?”

Giles shrugged and looked more closely at Spike, who was pulling on his duster in a state of great agitation. “He didn’t say, he seemed to be in a hurry.” He paused, thinking. “I think he said he was going to get a drink.”

“Oh fuckin’ bugger it all,” cursed Spike, and sped out the door.


~*~*~*~*~


Xander was so angry that he didn’t notice where he was going until he had walked for several minutes. He was in the bar district of Sunnydale, ostensibly heading for the Bronze, when he noticed Brown’s van in the parking lot of a less respectable pub. He turned in there instead.

The boy was at the back, barely visible, at the end nearest the employee’s entrance. He stared into his drink, and didn’t even notice Xander as the older man plunked down beside him on a barstool.

“How old are you?” Xander asked crisply.

Brown looked startled until he recognized Xander. “Old enough in some states,” he said flatly.

“Not in this one.”

“You are not in the state I’m in, man.”

“Cute,” said Xander dryly. “So how’d you get served?”

Brown tossed a credible looking fake ID on the counter. “Do I hafta go? Cuz I’ll just find somewheres else ya know.”

“No,” said Xander sighing. “No, I just wanted to make sure no one would accuse me of contributing to your delinquency.” He motioned at the bartender. “What you having?”

Brown brightened, even pulled a smile out of somewhere. “My delinquency is fine, man. But contributions happily accepted.”


~*~*~*~*~


Spike had been meaning to simply search one pub after another. He was walking down the street when he got a feeling. It was an intuitive tingle, much like he would get when a Slayer was about, but this one felt pleasant, not dangerous (not that dangerous isn’t sometimes pleasant.) He stopped and looked around. In the parking lot of one bar, he saw a vehicle much like the one that had dropped Xander off that morning. The vehicle owned by the handsome young Slayerette that Xander had apparently befriended. Sparks beginning a fire in his head, Spike headed into the bar.

His eyes adjusted immediately to the darkened room, but he felt Xander there before he saw him. And how odd is that, he thought, pausing to absorb the realization. Xander sat at the end of the bar with the Slayer’s boy. They were both obviously deep in their cups. If Spike didn’t know the stages of Xander drunkenness, he knew nothing. They sat leaning into each other, shoulder to shoulder, laughing and talking in a scene of such intimacy Spike boiled. At that exact moment, Xander seemed to feel Spike’s presence as well and looked up, straight at him. Spike read the startlement on Xander’s face as guilt, and charged across the room.

Xander slid unsteadily off his barstool and stood grim faced and belligerent, arms crossed. Spike approached, and he stared him down coolly. “Must be dark already,” he commented to Brown, “all the creatures are out.” Behind him, Brown rose also. He put a hand on Xander’s shoulder. Xander saw Spike notice the hand immediately and then look back at him again, his expression smoldering. And whoa, not kidding about the jealousy, huh, Spike? He smirked into the vampire’s face, although his knees were shaking.

“Hey, Xan,” Brown’s voice was angry, “we hangin’ out with vampires?”

Spike’s eyes flashed and he stepped closer to Xander. Pointedly putting his hand on Xander’s other shoulder.

“Tell him to bugger off,” he demanded of Xander.

Xander flared. “You bugger off, Spike,” he said angrily, shaking off the hand that felt so delicious on his shoulder and turning away from the vampire. “Mr. plays-well-with-others,” he said to Brown, “sorry ‘bout that.”

“’S okay, man,” said Brown, taking his seat again. “Mr. Psycho-with-a-soul don’t do it for me either.”

Spike growled and pressed so close to Xander that he was shoved against the barstool. “Come home, now, Xander,” he insisted angrily. Xander heard the plea under the tone, but chose to ignore it. He pushed Spike away from him.

“Fucking lay off, Spike,” he hissed in a whisper. “I’m not your fucking dog.” They glared into each other’s eyes. Spike could smell the alcohol and the anger. He could smell arousal and imagined it was for the young boy. He felt his need for Xander overwhelming his jealousy, and fiercely fought it, needing not to appear pathetic. He raised his hand to Xander’s turtleneck, and before the other man could react, flipped it down to reveal his mark.

“You aren’t?” he said darkly, “cuz you’re wearing my collar.”

Behind him, Xander heard Brown react. He shoved Spike away and turned to look at the boy. Brown was looking at his neck with an expression of absolute revulsion. “Oh man,” the cynical face took in the two before him, comprehension and more disgust washed over his face. “Oh fucking gross.” Brown stood and shoved away from the bar.

“See ya.” And he made for the exit.

“Brown, wait,” Xander said ineffectually. He spun around and confronted Spike. “You asshole. You fucking asshole.”

“Oh what, are we hiding things again? ‘Cuz no-one gave me a program, didn’t know.” Spike was aware that he was falling but he couldn’t stop himself. His emotions were driving him too hard. “You’re mine now, Xander. No more fucking booze. No more whoring around. You’re mine.”

Xander was furious. “What the fuck are you saying!” he shouted in Spike’s face. The bartender headed down towards the two men as several customers glanced up. “What the fuck are you doing? I’m not some fucking fire hydrant!”

“Take it ouside,” said the bartender, suddenly next to them. Xander glared, grabbed his coat and spun out, Spike close behind him. When they reached the street, Xander turned on Spike again.

“Stop following me!” he yelled.

“No,” said Spike belligerently. “Gonna make sure you don’t fuck yourself up worse.” He tried to grab Xander’s arm, but Xander shook him off again.

“Oh right,” said Xander angrily, “like you’re doin’ me a favor. Well do me a favor and don’t.” He stomped off, Spike following. He stopped again and glared at him.

Spike glared back. “Have to,” he said angrily. Something in his face twitched. “Have to,” Spike said again, softer. “Xander, I was worried…”

“Oh geez, Spike. You told me to fuck off. You shut me out!”

“You lied to me!”

“I didn’t lie. I told you. God, I told you stuff nobody knows.”

“You didn’t tell me you were sick.”

“Why would I? So you could feel sorry for me? Give me lectures? Maybe I wanted just to be with you! Fuck Spike, do you know how hard …” Xander swallowed and looked away, began walking again. “It wasn’t easy.”

“Sorry I’m such a pain!”

“You said it.”

“You gonna do this everytime I piss you off? You gonna run out and get wasted every time?”

“You told me to fuck off!”

“And what? For the first time in a million you suddenly decide to do what I tell ya?”

“And you said you wished you hadn’t claimed me!” whined Xander, tears in his voice. “God, Spike, you said you wished you hadn’t!”

“Xander…”

“Spike, you said…” Xander’s mouth worked soundlessly. He was overwhelmed by that feeling of being shut out. Rejected for no known cause. He covered his face with his hand, trying to hide. “… you don’t want …” he angrily ground his teeth. “You don’t want me. You don’t want anyone else to want me.” Turning away from Spike, he sped up. “Fuck you. Fuck off. Everybody just fuck off and leave me alone. Need a drink. Need a drink and to be left alone.”

Spike ran beside him. “Xander, I didn’t mean it.” Xander ignored him. “Xander,” Spike said desperately, trying to grab Xander’s shoulder again, “Xander I need you. I can’t…” Xander stopped and looked at him. His face was blazing and wet and twisted with withheld emotions. Spike pleaded with him. “Xan, we’re doing it again. We always do this.” He put both his hands on Xander’s shoulders, willing himself and Xander to calmness. “Please, Xan. I’m sorry. I was … scared,” he admitted in a tiny voice, looking away in astonishment.

Xander’s expression softened. Tears spilled from the corners of his eyes. “Who’s not scared?” he said stuffily.

“Not me. Not the Big Bad.”

Xander snorted. Spike looked at him again. He grimaced painfully. “Fuck off,” he said softly.

Xander sniffed and wiped his nose with his sleeve. He shook his head. “You fucking asshole,” he said shakily.

“Yeah.” Spike shrugged philosophically. “Well, yeah.”

“You scared the crap outta me, too.”

“Yeah. I know.”

“You’re not the only one feelin’ stuff here, Spike.”

Spike bowed his head and stepped closer to Xander. He lay one hand hopefully on the man’s arm and rubbed it gently up and down. “I’m sorry, Xander.” He let Xander look into his eyes for a long moment, willing him to see the truth there. “I won’t shut you out again,” Spike swore.

Xander stepped back from Spike a bit and wrapped his arms around himself. He stood with his feet planted apart and looked thoughtfully down at the pavement. “Okay,” he said suddenly.

“What?” Spike tilted his head to one side.

“I can say it now,” said Xander to the sidewalk. He glanced around a little, up at Spike, then back to the sidewalk. Took a deep breath and let it out with a sigh. “I’m ready.”

“What can you say now?”

“What it meant.”

Spike went still. He watched Xander and waited.

Xander stood on the sidewalk in front of a dark alley in Sunnydale and cleared his throat, as if he were a small boy about to make a speech to his class. “It meant,” he said and nodded. “It meant a lot.” He closed his eyes and grimaced. Spike waited patiently, trying not to smile while Xander went for it again. “It meant that you… - …that you wouldn’t …” Xander pressed his lips together, took another deep breath. “It meant you were mine, that you wouldn’t leave me, that you’d …” he was breathing so hard he could barely speak. He struggled to control himself, “that you’d love me no matter…” Xander broke. He felt it and turned his back to Spike. “God, I fucking hate this,” he said, “I feel like a soap opera.”

“Passions.”

“God.”

Spike came up behind him, hesitantly put his arms loosely around Xander, and touched his forehead to the man’s back. He turned him gently to face him. “Losing my mind, here, Xan.” Spike gave Xander a little shake and peered into his eyes earnestly. “I’m so fucking afraid of something’ happenin’ to you, then I find out you’re sick.” He closed his eyes and Xander saw him clench his teeth. “You’re sick,” said Spike slowly, “and maybe you’re gonna … you’re gonna leave me again. And then I thought maybe you just wanted to have some fun…”

“Geezus, Spike!”

“’Cuz why the hell would I be so lucky? It never happens, ya know. Know better than to expect it…” he trailed off confusedly. Xander looked around nervously and wrapped an arm around Spike.

“C’mon,” he said, his voice urgent, “let’s get outta the streets.” Spike was pulled along docilely. Xander urged him towards the darkened alley. He glanced back towards the empty sidewalk, and gently shoved Spike up against a brick wall. He looked into Spike’s eyes intently, pressing close to him. “But first.” He clasped Spike’s face, pushed him back and kissed him thoroughly. Spike folded himself up against Xander, his arms snaking around, and kissed him back. After a moment they broke apart.

“Geez,” said Xander breathlessly, “I needed that.”

Spike murmured his assent. He snuggled against Xander, nuzzling his mark over and over until the other man groaned. “Need more, Xan,” growled Spike. He gave in to his urge and lathed a broad swipe with his tongue across Xander’s mark. Xander groaned and grabbed Spike’s shoulders, fastened his mouth to the bite on his neck, then traveled rapidly upwards to attack his mouth. Spike pushed himself close and groaned as his cock made contact with a definitely aroused Xander. “Xander, I want you,” Spike growled. “Want you now.”

“Yeah,” breathed Xander. The need he had felt all day suddenly rushing over him so hard his knees wobbled. He felt Spike working his fly, felt the cool night air as his cock was gently pulled free. He arched against Spike’s hand and shivered with the sensation. “Oh geez, Spike,” he moaned.

The vampire dropped to his knees in front of him, his hand gently fondling Xander’s balls, sliding up and down Xander’s shaft. Xander looked down at the face and white hair, barely visible in the shadows, brilliant blue glittering up at him. A pink tongue licked those lips, and then Spike’s mouth fastened around his cock and swallowed him whole.

Xander arched and cried out as he felt the head hit the back of Spike’s throat. He clutched at the air around him and fought the urge to thrust, but Spike was doing it for him, shoving his face into Xander’s pubic hair, as he forced his cock further and further down his throat.

Xander realized how close he was to coming already and desperately began shoving at Spike’s head, wanting to draw the moment out, but the vampire could not be budged. He began making a low sound in his throat and Xander helplessly rose up on his toes, vainly fighting the orgasm that flared at the base of his spine. Spike gripped Xander’s thighs firmly and held him up as the man began tipping unsteadily. His legs were shaking and his balls were tightening. Animalistic noises came out of his mouth as he kneaded Spike’s head with his fingers. Suddenly his hips arched, his shaft leapt in Spike’s throat and shot wildly, Xander’s hips thrusting now out of control as Spike’s throat convulsed repeatedly around him. He stood for a minute alight with the electricity of it, and then gasped as Spike released him into the cool night air again and rose swiftly to lift Xander’s body with his own, and glue himself to Xander’s mouth. A salty fluid flowed into Xander’s mouth and he realized that the vampire was giving him back his own jism. He groaned into the kiss in shock and writhed against a still very aroused Spike.

Spike spun Xander around and brought him firmly up against the brick wall. Xander looked into the blazing blue eyes. “Claim me again, Spike,” he pleaded softly. He wriggled his hands between them, began stripping the buttons open on Spike’s fly. He pressed the heel of his hand firmly into Spike’s cock and the vampire thrust back and groaned. “Fuck me and claim me again, Spike,” said Xander.

Spike responded with another urgent kiss. Then before Xander could react, he was spun around and his slacks yanked down to his knees. He felt Spike drop behind him and caress his bottom once with cool palms before a wet cold tongue drew a line down his crack. Xander made a little ‘Aah’ squeak and pushed back into the sensation. The tongue slowly wiggled over Xander’s entrance, and he felt his cock respond with a little twitch. He shoved himself back again appreciatively and felt Spike respond with more pressure against his entrance. Xander cried out when the tongue poked inside. He began rhythmically shoving back against the intrusion, his own arousal growing again, as the force and depth of Spike’s thrusts increased. The vampire pulled back for a minute and Xander heard him spit, felt the cool moisture dribble from his entrance. He groaned and thrust back, “Spike, please,” he begged. The tongue pushed into him again. Spike’s hands spread his cheeks apart hard, and Xander felt that sweet spot suddenly flash blue dots across his vision. His knees began wobbling again and he writhed uncontrollably. “Yeah,” he panted. “do me now do me now.”

The vampire rose obediently, and the cold thick head of his cock pressed hard into Xander’s hole. Xander cried out and thrust backward as Spike grabbed his hips and pulled him back onto his shaft, burying himself all at once, so that Xander felt Spike’s sac slap hard against his ass. Both men cried out at the pleasure and froze for a moment.

Then Spike began a slow rhythm. Long, deep, hard thrusts, Xander matching him stroke for stroke. Leaning slightly forward, supported against the wall, his hands holding him, his own cock forgotten as he fell into the sensation of Spike inside him.

A cool firm fist appeared on Xander’s dick and he cried out again, shaking his head back and forth wildly as Spike matched his thrusts with the fisting of Xander’s cock. Xander felt another orgasm building, and started chanting, “Yes Spike, God Spike yeah yeah so good so good, God Spike do it do it. Bite me bite me.”

Xander felt Spike draping over him, the smooth leather of the duster blanketing their bodies. The cool, cool tongue lapped his mark and Xander almost blacked out. He registered that Spike’s face was still soft against his skin, and was therefore surprised when the needle sharp teeth suddenly punched into his neck.

Spike thrust once, very hard, into Xander’s ass, and clamped down with his teeth. The human arched forward and screamed. His orgasm splattered hard against the brick wall. Spike groaned desperately against Xander’s neck and thrust again into his spasming channel, his orgasm mounting. Xander began wobbling, and Spike focused hard. He stopped sucking, but sped up his thrusting. A white hot orgasm burned in his balls and Spike finally drew his fangs from Xander’s neck, and howled and thrust wildly as his sperm shot deep into Xander’s channel.

He held Xander up for a minute, frozen in pleasure, mindless. Suddenly Xander tore away. Before Spike could register the loss, the other man had spun about and grabbed the vampire’s shoulders. Xander’s eyes, Spike noted for the brief second that he saw them, were filled with fire. Then Xander lunged and bit. He sank his teeth into his mark so deeply and with such strength that, even if he hadn’t been clenching Spike to him with such force, he would have held the vampire solely with his mouth. Spike’s whole body spasmed wildly. The electrical charge pouring from his neck was the exact opposite of the one emitted by the chip. This was a sensation he could not bear to have end. He pushed himself against Xander, tried to arch his neck into the other man. He felt Xander drawing hard, insistent mouthfuls of blood from him. He was humming with greedy hunger, his tongue roughly pulling at the edges of the wound, his teeth grinding in. Spike saw suns and moons and wild eternity spinning out of control. He felt Xander’s heart beating against his chest, seemingly beating inside his chest. Suddenly something inside him chimed a low warning. He struggled against the swooning desire to let this man swallow him down and pushed Xander away so forcefully, the human hit the wall with a little ‘oof’.

The two men stared at one another. Xander’s mouth and face, even his nose, were smeared with blood. He licked at the smears avidly, gasping and swallowing. His eyes were black and wild. Spike shakily touched his mark and shivered with the sensation. His eyes traveled over the mark on Xander where the dark blood still welled and he moaned with longing, scanning the beauty of his mate as he stood before him. Spike’s blood dripping from his face, fresh spunk dripping from his shirt, where Spike had come again from the biting. “Mine,” growled Spike.

“Mine,” agreed Xander. A liquid black something flowed across his eyes. He stepped up to Spike and kissed him again. Ran his tongue all over the inside of Spike’s mouth. Tasted his own blood, his own come. Tasted his claim. He broke away and stared into Spike’s eyes. “I feel so stoned,” he stated, amazed.

Spike laughed. “Yeah, me too, mate.”

They stepped forward simultaneously into a long hug. Rocking each other gently, dancing inside the sensation of belonging and fulfillment. Finally Xander stepped back a little, shaking his head and laughing. “God, look at me.”

Spike made a point of doing so, head to toe, “Beautiful,” he said simply.

Xander’s eyes lit a little at the word, then he laughed self-consciously. “Right,” he said. He shook his head again, “I look like shit,” he studied Spike, “but I feel amazing.”

“Yeah?”

“C’mon, lets get back.” Xander was straightening his clothes out, carefully wiping the blood from his face with his fingers, then licking them like a cat. As Spike made himself decent, Xander stepped forward and just stroked the vampire’s back. His whole arm buzzed. “I think I’m high on William the Bloody,” he said quietly. Spike turned to look at him. His eyes were happy.

“Xander,” he breathed. He stepped into Xander’s embrace again and felt the shiver of awareness shifting over his skin. Then he pulled back and danced out of the alleyway and down the sidewalk towards home. Xander followed him immediately.

“Nectar of the Gods,” he called lightly towards Spike. Spike turned and smiled saucily. He wiggled his hips. Xander reassessed the metaphor. “Maybe Elixir of the Devil?” Spike laughed, turned with cat-like grace and leapt over a bush. Leapt back.

“I’m high on you too, Harris,” he called delightedly. He ran back at an unnatural speed, zipped around Xander and spun again in front of him.

“But god, Spike, it’s like I’ve got Spidey senses.” Xander pondered the night. “It’s like I can hear with my skin.”

Spike wiggled an eyebrow suggestively and danced for Xander on the sidewalk. He held his arms out, happily presenting himself in total to the man before him. “Can you hear what I’m saying now?” he asked, grinning.

“It’s like I can see auras or something.”

Spike laughed happily. “Cool!” He danced in front of Xander, walking backwards down the sidewalk, “whuts my aura look like?”

“Shit,” said Xander, stopping dead.

“Hey!” Spike’s shocked laugh died at Xander’s expression. He spun around and stared. “Fucking hell.”

“Yeah.” Xander started to breath hard; he ran up to Spike, grabbed him and began pulling him backwards. “C’mon, let’s get away.”

In front of the Summers’ residence was an unmistakably military issue vehicle. Next to it stood two S.W.A.T. garbed men with guns. One wore a crossbow across his back. The other was Riley Finn.




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