Need


by
Thea Zara



Part Four

"You know, I've been a good little vamp all day. I kept my mouth shut, for the most part. I signed your ruddy papers, without so much as reading a line of them. I sat real quiet like while you announced to all and sundry that we were mates, which we will be having a conversation about real soon, by the way. I even helped you drag in all that shite you call possessions, without bitching." Xander gave him a look and Spike amended the statement. "Ok without much bitching. Now what I really need to know, is how the bloody hell can you afford a place like this, why is it in my name, and is some bill collector gonna come and try to break my legs when you don't pay the rent?" Spike asked, glaring at a smirking Xander.

"First things first, it's not just in your name. I had things put in both our names so that if something happened to me, you wouldn't have to worry about being thrown out of your home, and so you'd know it was just that, your home. I can afford it cause it's a perk of my new job. This building was the first one my company remodeled specifically for special needs tenants."

"Special needs tenants? You mean like people in wheelchairs or blind people?" Spike asked, curious.

"Actually yeah some of the above ground apartments are designed for those types of special needs. But mostly the building has apartments set up for various non-human special needs. For example, this is one of six below ground apartments, with no windows, and direct access to the covered parking garage. Several of the apartments are designed in larger and smaller scales, to accommodate creatures who don't fall into the human standards in size. All public facilities are warded with non-violence spells. All private residences are warded so no one intending to harm the owners, another reason to have your name on the lease, by the way, can get in the front door. Um, some apartments have alternate types of food prep areas, and several have alternate 'bedroom' designs."

"This is too bloody priceless, this is. The Slayer's brown eyed boy has been spending his nights killing demons, and 'is days building them places to live. Aren't you seeing a bit of a conflict of interest there, pet?" Spike asked, amused.

"It's not exactly like that, Spike. Yeah there might be a malevolent demon or two who take up residence here, but the end the world types tend to make their own lairs. Our buildings are designed for the live and let live crowd. Non-humans who just want their own version of the American dream. And if Buffy should happen across that sort of 'demon'... well more than one creature of the night has 'accidentally' escaped because of my clumsiness."

"That's right bloody sneaky that is, pet." Spike said with an appreciative gleam in his eyes. "So, your company caters to the non-human varieties, how does that translate into a glorified bricklayer such as yourself, affording something this posh?"

"Well glorified bricklayer isn't quite accurate these days, Spike."

"Course it's not, pet. So why don't you tell me what is accurate, yeah?"

"Well my current official title is 'Vice President in Charge of Special Projects' and basically it means any jobs in the company that fall into the category of 'supernatural' go through me. This being Sunnydale, there are a lot of projects that fall into that category."

"So how'd you go from bricklayer to Vice-president, pet? That seems like quite a leap even to me."

"I started noticing some of the unusual designs going into this place, and I got curious; figured it was something Hellmouthy. Just as soon as I could manage it, I snuck a peek at the paperwork and the plans. I got caught."

"And?"

"And instead of stammering and/or making some bullshit moral stand, I pointed out several places where they were missing opportunities."

"Opportunities?" Spike asked, drawn into the story now.

"Well for one thing, they had certain areas designed for larger non-humans, but the alterations that allowed for the larger spaces left a bit of negative space in the building design. I pointed out that those smaller areas could easily hold several apartments for smaller non-humans. I pointed out that several creatures didn't like sunlight and that the basement and subbasement spaces they were ignoring could easily be transformed into more apartments. I also pointed out the selling factor of wards, home safety sells, you know."

"Nice job, pet." Spike said, clearly impressed.

"You weren't the only one who thought so. My boss passed the ideas up the line, and when Gary got wind of it, I got pulled in to talk with him. He had the architect start implementing several of my suggestions in a redrafted design plan. He showed me other projects in the planning stages. I pointed out some of the things his designers missed, or didn't realize, and apparently I impressed him, cause he offered me a bonus, based on a percentage of the money my suggestions would make for the company, and a promotion. He found out I was looking for a place and offered me a choice of locations. I think I really shocked him when I picked this place." Xander said with a smile.

"Why this place then?" Spike asked.

"Because it had the best features for my mate." Xander said with a smile.

"Ok, I think we need to talk about that now, Xander. Just why do you keep calling yourself my mate. When it comes to a vampire, there are certain things we have definitely not done yet, that are requirements for me taking you as a mate." Spike wasn't sneering now, just curious and confused.

"We aren't mates yet according to your... well faith for want of a better term, but we are by mine." Xander said quietly. "Your alpha presented me to you, and you didn't refuse me. You accepted my claim bite, and you've allowed me to provide for you, to keep you safe. According to my hyena you're my mate and my responsibility." Xander finished fiercely.

"So I'm just supposed to accept this? Just supposed to allow some human to claim me as his property? And what the bloody fuck do you mean by hyena? And when the hell did my alpha present you to... Oh fuck, you mean the poof, don't you? That night in the hallway. You bleeding idiot he was offering you up as a snack... a trick snack at that."

"That doesn't matter to the hyena. And I'm not 'some human' and you're not my property. You are my mate and my equal. I have been studying you for years, planning and working so that I'd be able to give you what you need and claim you."

Spike stalked forward until he was right in front of Xander. "And just what the hell is that supposed to mean, whelp? 'What I need' What the fuck do you know about what I need? And what makes you think you could possibly provide it?" he snarled, infuriated now.

"I know exactly what you need Spike. You needed it as a human, and you needed it as a demon, and none of the idiots that had the chance could give it to you. You need to be loved and taken care of. You need to be put first by someone who loves you."

Spike opened his mouth, without any idea what was going to come out, but before he could speak, Xander continued.

"But that's not what you meant is it? I also know you've been starving since the Initiative. Not only is the pig's blood almost useless for healing you up, it's also barely keeping you alive. Buffy and Willow may not realize it, and Giles may not care, but I do, and I can finally do something about it. I know your demon was slowly going nuts being without a safe place of it's own, and I did something about that too."

Spike's leaned back and just looked at Xander for a moment, his face unreadable. "So you thought you'd provide me with all the things, right? And then what? I'd just fall into your bed? Beg to be your little kept boy?"

Instead of getting embarrassed, as Spike had fully expected, Xander smirked at him. "That's right, Spike," he said leaning into Spike's space. "I did all this so I could get in your pants. That's why I was already in them before you knew a thing about any of this." Xander stepped froward and cupped his hand over Spike's hard cock, before he continued talking. "That's why I bit you, and why I stroked you until you exploded all over my hand. That's why I got down on my knees and explored your body with my lips and tongue, and then sucked you till you filled my mouth up with your cum. That's why I did it all, right, without having you so much as touch me cause I'm just greedy like that, you know, thinking only of what I want."

In that moment, with Xander's hand stroking him through denim, and his husky voice repeating all the things he'd done, Spike had an epiphany. Not one of his lovers had ever given like the man in front of him. Angelus had been all about pain and control and frankly seemed to get even worse if he so much as thought Spike enjoyed something. Dru, ripe plum that she was, did try, but he could never live up to 'Daddy' and that knowledge leeched most of the enjoyment out of things. Harmony? Bloody chit was the epitome of a greedy lover, and for a vampire, she seemed to think a lot of things were 'icky'. How the hell could he have more than a hundred years of sexual experiences, and not have one come even close to the twenty year old boy in front of him.

He saw the hurt cross Xander's face as he finished speaking, and felt him pull his hand away. Spike did the only thing he could; He reached one hand up to Xander's neck and pulled him into a kiss. He slid his other hand out and under Xander's shirt, mapping out the body he'd barely touched before. He could feel Xander's hard cock against one hip and slid himself around until his cock was pressing against it. Xander moaned into his mouth, and Spike pulled back. He looked at Xander for a long moment. The dilated eyes, the kiss swollen lips, the panting all combined to make the boy, no the man in front of him one of the most beautiful creatures he'd ever seen.

"Which way to the bedroom, pet?" Spike asked quietly.

Xander could only point toward the proper door.





Part Five

"I think we need to work on your trust issues, Spike." Xander said between kisses as they worked their way into the bedroom.

"Vampire here, mate. We don't generally do trust." Spike said quietly.

"All the more reason to work on it, blondie." Xander began stroking Spike's cock through his jeans and started a long deep kiss. As they kissed, Xander began stripping out of his clothes. After a few moments, he started nibbling down Spike's throat, to the claim bite on his shoulder. Xander suddenly bit that spot, deep and hard.

Spike's whole body jerked and his eyes slid closed. They didn't open as Xander pulled away for a moment, as he struggled to regain some kind of control. They flew open when he heard the unmistakeable sound of metal clanking on metal.

Spike stood in the middle of the room he had yet to examine. It certainly had a bed in it, but sleep was clearly not the main purpose of the room. Xander lay on the bed, naked and hard, his cock dripping precum. His arms were held over his head, his wrists each tightly ensconced in cuffs permanently attached to the intricately designed headboard.

For the briefest of moments Spike ogled him in shock, before Xander spoke up. "I trust you, Spike." was all he said.

Spike's jaw dropped and he tried over and over to say something, anything. After a moment or two, he turned and silently walked out of the room. Instead of yelling, or becoming angry, Xander waited quietly.

After what seemed like an eternity, Spike stepped back into the room. "What do you think you're doing here, pet? Is this some nasty little game of taunt the vampire? Are you trying to prove some sort of point? You lay yourself out like that, and you know, KNOW I can't hurt you, can't do anything to you really."

"Yes, I am trying to prove a point, and yes you can do anything. Really." Xander said quietly, but with conviction.

"Well what the bloody hell is the point, then? And what the bloody hell do you mean I can do anything? Chip here, remember?" he snarled at Xander.

"The point is that I trust you, and what I mean is that you can in fact, do anything to me. You have already, or don't you remember biting me the other night?"

Spike turned to look at Xander in shock. "I did... didn't I. How the hell did I forget that?"

"Acute loss of blood to your brain immediately afterwards." Xander said with a smirk. "Not to mention a nice round of cumming until you pass out."

"Cumming till you pass out, eh whelp? I think we might be able to manage that," he said with a leer, as he finally allowed himself to look at Xander laid out. "Such a treat, you are, luv."

Stripping down, Spike crawled up the bed until he was next to Xander, whose eyes had followed him the entire length of the bed. He ran a finger up the dark trail on Xander's stomach. He slowly ran it around each nipple and then up to tease the delicate skin under each arm. Xander shuddered in response, but didn't say anything.

"I can do anything I want to you, right luv? Care to guess what I'm going to do to you?" His voice was drenched in menace and sex as he whispered in Xander's ear.

Xander shuddered again, but looked him in the eye before speaking. "I trust you, Spike." he repeated, before darting his head up for a kiss.

Spike let the kiss last for a few minutes, his hands dancing over Xander's helpless body until he was drenched in sweat, and his nipples were rock hard under Spike's attention. Breaking the kiss, he slid down Xander's body. With one hand he pinched a nipple roughly and ran his tongue over the other one, before biting at it with blunt teeth. Xander moaned and writhed under his assault.

After a few moments, he slipped lower, trailing kisses down a sweat slicked stomach, stopping just above the hard cock drooling precum. After a glance to make sure Xander was watching him, Spike leaned down and delicately lapped at the growing pool. Xander's cock twitched at the sight, and he let out a long low moan. Spike rasped his tongue across the head of Xander's cock slowly before pulling away completely and climbing out of the bed.

Eyes almost black with lust and need, Xander could only watch as Spike walked away from the bed and began to poke into drawers and cabinets. He was rather impressed with what he found. Keeping his back to Xander, he selected a few items, then returned to the bed. He pulled a pair of pillows from the top of the bed and slid one of them under Xander's ass. The other he used to block Xander's view of the things he'd gathered. He placed Xander's feet flat on the bed then slid them up until his heels almost touched the pillow under his ass.

Satisfied with the setup, he knelt between Xander's legs and slipped his mouth over Xander's cock. He sucked and nibbled at the hard, red member until Xander was certain he was going to explode. In the moment before he could cum, Spike laced something around his cock, effectively blocking his orgasm.

"This leather harness looks just lovely on you, Xan," he said, eyes glazed, before licking from leather binder to tip and back again. Xander moaned and squirmed under him.

He pulled back and fumbled with something for a minute, before Xander felt cool, slick fingers start to stroke behind his balls and across his tight hole. He started with slow, careful circles, and then as Xander relaxed under him, he started shallow dips inside, and then deeper. Twisting his finger around he seemed to find what he was looking for, and then with his eyes locked onto Xander's face, he began teasing strokes back and forth over it.

Xander gasped and bucked as Spike stimulated his prostate. He pulled his finger out momentarily and Xander cried out at the loss. Spike added more lube to his fingers and slid two in this time, slowly stretching and scissoring his fingers before he returned to stroking that soft nub that caused fireworks behind Xander's eyelids. Spike repeated the process, adding another finger every few moments, until he had four worked inside and Xander was keening with need and lust.

Spike reached up and released Xander's hands before he positioned himself at Xander's slick opening. He ran his slick hand over his cock, then wrapped his fist around Xander's. He slowly stroked and looked up into the black/brown eyes of his lover.

"Tell me what you want, Xander. Tell me, and I'll give it to you, luv."

"Inside, please." Was all he could manage, but it was enough.

Spike began a long slow glide into Xander. He slipped in slowly, until his body was flush against Xander's. He closed his eyes a minute to regain control. The heat was exquisite around his shaft, and he had never felt anything so perfect.

After a moment, Xander began running his hands over Spike's chest, teasing his nipples and gliding over muscles. He pulled Spike down, still buried entirely inside him, for a long slow kiss. When the kiss broke Xander said only three words, but they changed everything for the man, the vampire, inside him. "Love you, Blondie."

Spike stared down into his eyes, searching them for any lie, for any regret. When he found neither, he kissed Xander again, deeply, before pulling back and answering. "I Love you too, whelp." Then he began sliding in and out in short thrusts. He slowly built up the tempo, stroking Xander's cock with one hand, while he carefully untied the harness.

When they were both on the verge, bodies slamming against each other frantically, Spike leaned down and found the spot he wanted. He kissed it softly and then pulled back to look at Xander. "Are you sure?" Xander nodded and tilted his head to one side, allowing Spike free access.

Spike struck swiftly, his face shifting and teeth tearing into Xander without hesitation. Seconds after, he felt Xander's teeth in his own shoulder, as Xander found and reopened his own claim mark. They each drank deeply, as their hips pistoned against each other, bringing them closer and closer to completion.

Just as Xander began to cum, Spike pulled his mouth back and let loose a howl and slammed into Xander fully, holding himself there as he shot spurt after spurt of cum deep inside his new consort. He collapsed onto Xander's chest, still buried deep inside him. After a moment or two of panting from both men, their blood stained mouths found each other and they shared a slow languid kiss. After several minutes, Xander reached for a towel and wiped them both down, before pulling the comforter over both of them, and drifting off to sleep.





Part Six

Xander rolled out from under Spike, and left the smaller man in his warm spot in the bed. With a smile on his face, he dealt with his human needs and then took a hot shower. When he got out, he checked the time and settled in for a bowl of cereal, and some cartoons on the new TV.

It only took a half hour of sleeping alone for Spike to wake up and join him on the long leather couch with his own breakfast. After an hour of snuggling and an hour of 'toons, Xander shut off the TV and turned to his companion. "Come on, Bleachie, I want to show you something."

He took Spike's hand, and led him to a door on the far side of the kitchen, picking up the envelope he'd left on the table as they went. The door led to a long hallway, with only one other door at the very end. Xander opened the door and pulled Spike into a parking garage. He handed him a key chain with several keys and a remote attached. It also had a card key identical to the one he used to access the elevator.

"These are yours. Press that button right there," he commanded, pointing to one button on the remote. Spike did as he was asked, and watched stunned as a door rolled open revealing what could have been his Desoto. If it looked factory new and had the windows scraped clean of paint. "I was going to lease you something new, but I thought you might appreciate a revamp, pardon the pun, on your car instead. It took the shop a couple weeks to do all the detail work I wanted done." Xander trailed off as Spike slowly walked towards the car without saying anything.

They stood by the car in silence for a few moments until finally Spike spoke. "Is this... was this my car?"

Xander nodded, and then spoke when he realized Spike wasn't looking at him. "Yeah, I uh found out where you were keeping it and made arrangements to have it restored. They put a new paint job on it; It looks black in here, but in natural light, it has this cool red sheen. New sound system, replacement windows, and they repaired the leather work. Is it, OK?" he asked quietly, afraid he'd screwed up royally.

"It's more than OK, pet. Nobody has ever done something this thoughtful fer me, and I'm standing here desperately trying to not cry like some bloody chit." Spike said with a manly quiver in his voice.

"Oh," Xander said, "well, uh, when you have control over that, why don't you take me for a drive."

"Course pet, but vampire here, and it's the middle of the day. Unless you got some spray paint handy I won't be driving anywhere for another few hours."

"Do you trust me, Spike?" Xander asked seriously.

Spike thought about it for a moment, serious look on his face. "Yeah, pet, I do."

"Well then, Blondie, get behind the wheel and take me for a spin." Xander said before climbing into the passenger seat.

Spike hesitated only a moment before sliding into the driver seat. He hesitated a moment or two longer as he took in the new interior of his baby. There was a CD player in the dash now, and the seats were soft and subtle leather. "What, no hyper-drive, Harris?" he asked with a smirk.

"Nah, they couldn't get the parts for that installed in time. Maybe next upgrade." Xander joked back.

Spike started the car and listened to the engine a minute, before kicking it into gear and following the signs towards the exit. He stopped on the exit ramp and looked out at the clear sunny day in front of them, and then swallowed nervously. "You sure about this, pet?"

"Just drive, Spike." Xander ordered with a small smile.

Spike took a deep unneeded breath, and stepped on the gas. When a ray of sunlight fell on his hand, Spike yelled and frantically pulled it back into the safety of the shade, and actually turned to yell at Xander before he realized the sun hadn't burned him. He pulled over and slowly slid one hand into the light. When nothing happened, he put his other hand into the light, and after several long minutes, he shifted around in his seat so he could see Xander. "What's going on here, Xander?"

"It's this new glass we found when we started looking for materials for our latest project. It's called 'Necro-tempered'. Apparently it blocks out the bits of sunlight that are flammable to vampires. If I hadn't already set my heart on our apartment, we could have waited for one of the new vamp proof penthouses that we're building into the newest project. One of the flaws is that I had the process done to bulletproof glass, so it while it's gonna be harder to shatter and let in any evil bad sunlight, you can't roll down the windows."

"I can live with that, pet. So, I think I promised you a drive, now didn't I?" Spike asked with a grin.

"Yeah, you did, Blondie. Why don't you give me a drive now, and I'll give you a ride later?" Xander smirked back at him.

"Sounds like my kind of plan, pet. All we need are some tunes..." Spike trailed off as Xander's hand shot up in front of him and flipped down the visor. There was a CD holder filled with home burned discs. Xander selected one and dropped it into the player. He fiddled with the controls a moment and suddenly the pair of them found themselves cruising through the bright day to 'My Way'.


~*~*~*~*~


It was just after dark when they returned home. While they were out enjoying the day, Xander had picked up dinner and ran a few other errands. Xander carried in the bags while Spike said goodnight to his baby.

Xander grabbed a couple beers and sat them next to the bag of Chinese food. He put the tub of blood from the butcher in the refrigerator, and then microwaved one of Spike's bags before transferring it to his cup. Xander had just settled in on the couch with everything when Spike came in.

They cuddled on the couch and watched TV for a couple hours, nibbling on whatever container was closest at any given time. When Spike went to grab them another couple beers he noticed the pig's blood on the shelf.

"So what's up with the tub of liquid porky in the fridge, pet?" he asked, curiosity peeked.

"Oh, I figure it's only right to have something around for your in-laws to drink."

"In-law's, Pet? Don't tell me yer ma and da are coming for a visit already?" Spike asked amused.

"It ain't my dad who likes to drink pig's blood." Xander said with a smirk.

"Bloody Hell! Why would Peaches be coming here?" he asked, flustered now.

"Well let's think. What did we do last night, Spike?"

"We moved in here, and then we had a bloody good snog and then a brilliant shag."

"And?"

"And I claimed you as my... Son of a Bitch! He's gonna rush his poofy arse down here to see just what I've done, isn't he?"

"Yup." Xander said smirking at his mate.

"You know, for someone who claims to hate the broody bastard so much, you're taking this awfully calm, pet."

"I've stood toe to toe with his insane alter-ego and not only lived to tell the tale, Spike, I won. So having a round of who's got the biggest pair with the king of hair gel isn't exactly something to send me running. Besides, I have my mate at my side. Whenever, whatever, we fight it together, and we win. It's as simple as that."

"And this nifty calm isn't 'cause you're planning on pointing and laughing at him from the safety of our doorway without inviting him in?" Spike asked with a smirk.

"Of course not, Spike. Although, if he comes here with bad intent he can't come in anyway; the wards would stop him. There's not much I can do about that. So lets just hope daddy dearest is in a listening mood."

"Not bloody likely, mate. He'll probably lecture you for a few hours on the evil that is me, then try to stake me a couple times before we get fed up and trounce him, then he'll go whining to the watcher, who'll of course inform the slayer, and then we'll have the whole lot of them whining at our door wanting me to meet a nice piece of wood, or to de-spell you from your clearly delusional state."

"You know that sounds depressingly accurate. With the exception of the whole lot of them showing up here. Speaking of which, I owe a certain redhead a call." Xander hopped up and grabbed the wireless phone off the counter and then snuggled back in next to Spike before he started dialing. "Tara, hi. Is Wills around? Yeah? Great, tell her to pick up the other phone and I'll tell you both at the same time."

Spike sat back and watched his mate warily. What the bloody hell was the whelp going to tell Red and Glinda? He could kind of understand the need to lie, after all he didn't want Her royal Buffyness to come after him with the handiest piece of wood, but it still rankled that he was going to be some sort of dirty little secret. Lost in his own, dare we call it broodyness, he missed several minutes of the conversation, but tuned back in just in time to hear Xander thanking Willow for her help.

"Yeah, we spent the whole afternoon just driving around, listening to those discs. I can't thank you enough for showing me how to burn them."

Red asked Xander something, but Spike couldn't quite make it out.

"Yeah, it was great," Was Xander blushing? "And now that we're all official like, I expect a nice wedding present, Missy." Wedding present? What the bleeding Christ was he telling the birds? Had the whelp made up an imaginary wife? "Don't you dare finish that question, Willow, or I'll be forced to ask you and Tara the same thing, in public. Besides, we're sorta taking turns with that, when I did my bit to satisfy the hyena it was me, then when it was Spike's turn, it was him."

Xander started laughing, and Spike could hear Red sputtering and laughing on the other end of the line, then clearly heard her shouting "TMI", whatever the bloody hell that meant. Then he heard Tara giggling and telling Willow, "That'll teach you to ask questions you don't want the answers to, honey." Spike was beyond confused. What the hell had he told them? Before he could suss it all out properly, Xander handed him the phone.

"Willow needs to have a word with you, Spike." Xander said with a smirk.

Nervous now, Spike plucked the phone from Xander's hand. "Yeah, Red?" Spike listened to her go on for a few moments, told her he understood, and handed the phone back to Xander.

Spike was in a right state of shock. Sweet, pixie-like little Red had just threatened to off him with a shovel if he did anything to hurt her Xander shaped friend. And Glinda had chimed in that she'd help. What the hell was going on, and what had the whelp told them that would induce such threats?

Spike wandered into the kitchen to heat up another bag of blood, and waited for Xander to get off the phone. He sat there staring off into space while his mind worked overtime trying to figure out just what the hell was going on, and was still in that position when Xander came into the room.

"Penny for your thought, Blondie." Xander said with a smile.

Spike could only blink at him owlishly for a minute or two, while he worked out how to ask what he wanted to know. Finally he gave up and just asked bluntly. "What sort of shite have you been telling Red and Glinda about me, whelp?"

Now Xander looked confused, and maybe a bit upset, but Spike wasn't having none of that. It was bad enough that the boy was gonna keep their being together a secret, obviously, but for him to go out of his way to piss the birds off at Spike? That was just mean, that was, and he wanted to know why.

"I told them the truth." Xander said just a touch too defensively for Spike's tastes.

"Oh really? So what sort of truth did you tell to have the pair of them threaten me with a shovel, eh whelp?" he asked becoming angrier by the minute, a fact that was not at all helped by the ponce in front of him breaking out into a bloody stupid grin.

"They really threatened you with a shovel?" Xander asked before breaking into the most God awful dancing Spike had ever seen. It almost looked like the boy was having a seizure while standing up. "This is great," he said, as he finished doing whatever the hell that thing was.

"I don't see what's so bloody great about two of the very small number of humans I can actually stand, feeling like they have to threaten me, based on whatever the hell you told them." Spike practically snarled at Xander.

"But it's a good thing. See I knew she said she was ok with it, but I thought she was just being all support-o girl, you know? I didn't think she was ok enough to give the shovel speech. That's just awesome, and Tara threatened to help too. This is so great, Spike." Xander was still wearing a grin that, while it lit up the room, made Spike want to vault over the table and smack it off of his face, under the circumstances.

Gritting his teeth and gripping the table to keep from doing just that, Spike spoke again. Slowly, as he was clearly mated to a bloody idiot. "Tell me, whelp, just why is telling the bloody chits crap about me and getting them to want to beat me to death a good thing, cause clearly I'm missing something here, or our definition of a good thing is vastly different."

Suddenly Xander realized just how furious Spike was, and just like that his grin dropped, and his own anger was rising. "You wanted me to lie about us, didn't you. You think I'm some sort of embarrassment, is that it? Have you changed your mind that quickly about wanting me as your consort? Don't want anyone to know you're with the pathetic loser, right?"

"What the fuck are you talking about? You're the one who lied to the birds, and then somehow got them mad enough to want to kill me." Spike spit back at him.

"I did not." Xander yelled back.

"What?" Spike asked, confused, 'cause everything about Xander in that moment said he was telling the truth.

"I did not lie to Willow and Tara. They both know we're together, that I'm your consort and you're my mate."

"What?" Spike asked again, completely gobsmacked. "They what? Is that why they threatened me, then? They don't want us together?"

"Willow threatened you with a shovel right? If you hurt me, she'd hunt you down, kill you with a shovel, yadda yadda yadda?" Xander asked, amusement coming back, now that he sort of understood what had happened.

"Pretty much, yeah." Spike said, so very, very confused.

"That's Willow's standard warning to people me or Buffy date. She gave Riley the same speech, although as far as I know, this is the first time Tara has offered to join in. It means they're OK with us being together."

"Their seal of approval is a death threat?" Spike asked somewhere between stunned stupid and ecstatic.

"Ya-huh."

"And you told them all about us being together?" Spike asked, barely able to believe it.

"Ya-huh."

"And I've just thrown a completely stupid tantrum over bloody nothing, and come off looking like a huge tit, haven't I?"

"Ya-huh." Xander said with a smirk, before pulling his vampire into a tight embrace.




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