Summary: Their lips moved in a sickening parody of speech, but the words died between the brain and the tongue. Xander could swear he heard Spike’s voice inside his head. S4 episode Hush AU.
A/N: Wow. I wrote a non-porn Spander. Who knew I had it in me? Written for tamingthemuse prompt #95-mime.
Finding The Gentlemen was taking longer than expected. Xander assumed that creepy guys cutting out hearts would be a fairly easy spot and slay job. His lack of voice was evidence to the contrary.
Giles’ current theory, and Xander wanted it recorded somewhere that they were on theory number ten, was that The Gentlemen existed in a parallel dimension, one which touched but did not intersect with their own. Xander wondered if that was Giles-speak for ‘beats me’, but couldn’t muster up the energy to write out the question. Snappy comebacks came harder when they had to be done longhand. Besides, he was too caught up in the mental destruction this quiet was wreaking.
He missed Spike’s voice.
Until this, Xander would have offered actual money to someone, anyone, who could guarantee him a night without Spike’s obnoxious, irritating voice. The grating, almost whine that emerged every time Spike felt like sharing, which was all the time. How abused he was, having to sleep in a chair; how he hated the Scoobies; his plans for getting the chip out and the massive bloodletting that would follow. Xander would have given a one hundred percent money back guarantee that the loss of the twitch-inducing voice would be one of his happiest moments.
He kept searching for the happy.
He wasn’t even sure what it was he missed. The first day had been disorienting and he'd been too busy dealing with the loss of his own voice to notice the ringing quiet from Spike. But a week in and the hilarity of watching Spike mime drinking blood had faded. The quiet remained.
They still talked which was disturbing. Their lips moved in a sickening parody of speech, but the words died between the brain and the tongue. Xander could swear he heard Spike’s voice inside his head. All those little sniping comments, the subtle digs at his job or his masculinity or just him, echoed inside his head. He couldn’t hear Buffy or Willow or Giles, but every time Spike’s lips moved, his voice resonated inside Xander.
That voice, grown richer and deeper inside Xander, dripped over him like warm honey, The drizzle of words urged him to think, to feel. Thinking about feeling and his mind immediately whipped back to Spike’s lips.
He wondered if Spike’s lips were soft. They looked soft when he slept, his mouth full and lax. Spike wasn’t soft. Even asleep or whatever passed for undead guy sleeping, Spike was hard. The sinews of his arms and the cords in his neck stood taut, muscles waiting to called into action. Xander wasn’t stupid and he knew that Spike had a century’s worth of practice in the art of making victims and influencing corpses.
But his lips looked soft and his voice lived inside Xander. The meeting adjourned and after the reassuring hugs and dry erase board good-byes were finished, Xander motioned for Spike to follow him out. They walked home in the enforced silence, hands fluttering uselessly in an effort to not communicate.
Before they reached his parents’ house, Xander reached out an arm and pulled Spike to an abrupt stop. He could hear the objection, the irritation ringing in his ears. He shook his head once, waving his hand in front of annoyed and impatient eyes.
He wanted to tell Spike, to explain that he knew where Spike’s voice was, but how do you explain that without using words? The voice whispered in his ear and Xander nodded distractedly, hands wrapped around Spike’s biceps. He leaned in, nipping and sucking at the soft lips that had been the center of his attention all night.
“Bloody fucking hell!”
The sound was so loud, a near explosion in his ear and Xander jerked backwards. Hearing Spike’s voice coming from Spike seemed wrong now and Xander wished that he hadn’t given the voice back. The warm-honey tones would disappear and in their place would be a cutting edge of cruelty.
A noise intruded on his thoughts and it took him a full minute to realize that noise was his voice. It took him yet another minute to realize his voice was coming from his mouth. He was talking. Out loud. Huh.
Xander smiled, the expression sliding slowly across his face. He and Spike had made an even trade, voice for voice. The idea that his voice had lived inside Spike pleased him in a way he wasn’t up for examining. But walking away from a shocked looking Spike made the whole thing even better.
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