Rating: Anything upto and including R/teen.
Disclaimer: Not mine, never will be. No harm, no foul, no money made.
Warnings/Squicks: Seasonal schmoop ahoy!
txrabbit asked for: Outside... The scent of snow just before it begins, watching the first small flakes fall from the sky, a kiss... and then added: Outside... The scents of crisp cool nights overlaid with the scent of a burning fire, while each breath hangs heavy just in front of your mouth.
First Snow, 270 words
A dozen different species of demon danced around the fire, leaping and twirling and dodging the snapping sparks of spitting sap from the fresh cut logs of apple wood and pine.
Every few minutes someone stepped up and tossed a new 'gift' in - sun dried vines, a bunch of lavender tied with a white silk ribbon, herbs and spices roughly bound with string and braided grass.
Xander wrapped his arms tighter around Spike's narrow waist as he rested his chin on one leather-clad shoulder. Content, he took another crystalline-edged breath of cold night air. It burned slightly, tasted of the group's anticipation as they sacrificed their gifts to bless the coming new year, then hung for long, quiet seconds before his eyes as he exhaled.
A sudden cry of exultation echoed off the stones and everyone looked up to watch the first flakes fall.
"Promised, didn't I? Said you'd have snow this Christmas, even if we had to cast a spell to make it happen."
Spike turned within the comforting loop of Xander's arms and lifted his own hands to Xander's face.
"Don't be daft. But I knew these blokes were due to do their thing here and I figured it was time you got some culture in your soul. Carnac's full of culture, with energy to spare - you'll never see anything else to match its sheer intensity."
Slightly chapped lips met in a loving kiss - gentle, silent, comfortable and sweetly impassioned. Noses rubbed and foreheads came together as it ended, neither man prepared to lose the closeness or the contact.
"Merry Christmas, luv."
tabaqui asked for: The scent of an orange stuck all over with cloves, an xmas tree seen through a window from the outside.
And, separately or together or whatever...the song 'The Holly and the Ivy'. http://www.carols.org.uk/the_ho11y_and_the_ivy.htm
I like it mostly for the 'rising of the sun' 'running of the deer' lines, otherwise it's a bit...redemptionist for me.
Paper Angels, 399 words
When Giles had first mentioned the Scottish log cabin, Xander had shivered and joked about eating haggis and mashed neeps. Spike had blinked twice, scratched his nose and changed the subject, and Xander got the inkling of a plan. He knew his vampire.
The cabin nestled in a narrow valley deep in the Scottish Highlands, miles from the nearest neighbour and surrounded by virgin forest.
They'd been there two days when the snow began to fall - huge, wet flakes that quickly buried everything in sight. The narrow, unpaved track soon became impassable, and Xander was glad he'd insisted they spend the first day stocking up.
Clouds, thick as cotton wool, draped from peak to peak, blanketing the sky above the valley. The few short hours the sun was overhead were barely noticeable, but Spike never failed to feel its presence. He revelled in each chance to go outside into the dull grey light without a single fear of being dusted.
Every day Spike bundled Xander into coat and boots, wrapped half a mile of Willow-knitted scarf around his neck, stuffed his fingers into leather gloves and dragged him out to play. Snowmen, snowwomen, even snowdemons, stood around the cabin in strange poses.
One patch of fairly level ground was put aside for angels - each evening Spike and Xander made a new pair. The previous works of art were fading slowly as the days piled up, edges blurred with each new fall of snow.
The best part of the day for Spike was standing on the porch and looking through the window at their decorated tree. Xander really had researched the whole thing very well, right down to the carols playing softly in the background.
Every ornament and decoration fitted perfectly. Delicate glass baubles and fragile paper angels, tiny, hand-carved wooden boats and soldiers, bears and dolls.
Oranges, wrapped round with ribbons, pierced with dark cloves, triggered new sense memories with every inhaled breath. Sometimes Spike imagined he'd see Mother sewing quietly if he only turned around a little faster, but he never did. This was his and Xander's time now.
" O the rising of the sun, and the running of the deer…"
Spike thought about the hoof prints he'd seen in the snow that afternoon. He'd bet good money Xander had never seen a deer in the wild. Another new experience to share with his love.
spikedluv asked for: I'll give you a couple you can choose from (or do them all /subliminal message): snow, trimming the tree, torn wrapping paper scattered on the floor, the sound of Christmas carols, hot cocoa... *g*
(Well, I didn't manage the snow, but I gave you spray cream instead. It's close, right?)
Compromised, 252 words
The CD faded out on the final track - 'Adeste Fideles' - and back in again at the beginning for the third - fourth? - consecutive time. Silver bells had 'ring-a-ling'ed and merry gentlemen had rested yet again by the time Xander recovered the energy to move.
With a heartfelt groan he rolled off Spike and onto the floor, squirming as scraps of paper and bubble wrap, crumpled tape and string, stuck to the gloss of slowly drying sweat on his back.
He opened his eyes and looked up through the branches of the almost-real Christmas tree that had been their latest compromise. Xander had refused to get a real one - pine needles hurt in sensitive places - and Spike had almost thrown a full-blown tantrum when presented with the silvery plastic tree that Xander favoured. So, plastic pine it was.
Xander had given in gracefully - after an hour-long blowjob - and agreed that Spike could choose the decorations. He'd come home late from work one evening and been suitably impressed - Victoriana-punk was kinda cool.
The enervating smell of hot chocolate had him scrambling upright, wondering how long he'd been asleep under the tree. Spike stood in the doorway, still naked, posed and obvious, a tray with two full mugs balanced casually on one hand, and a can of spray cream balanced on his hip..
"I should have known the smell of hot cocoa would wake you up. Drink up, let's get you fuelled up for round two, yeah?"
writan_bur asked for: How about... an advent wreath, with 3 lit candles. :-)
Home Stretch, 321 words
The residential portion of the new Slayer Training College was a fiery inferno waiting to happen every winter. Yule logs, Menorahs and candles burned for various and sundry deities, saints and probably demons (though nobody dared to ask).
The latest find had obviously been hidden rather carefully on every previous open-flame raid. It sat on Dory's cleared desk, three of four candles burning brightly - two of the purple trio and a single column of palest pink wax.
Xander studied the fourth, unlit candle for a moment and then offered his lighter to the fragile girl who stood there trembling.
"You want to light it now before I take it to the flame-proof room? If you want, I can find you four matching candles so it doesn’t look odd. It's no trouble, I can…"
"Xander, you are such a bloody heathen!" Spike snatched the Zippo and stuffed it back in Xander's rear pocket, copping a feel as he did so.
"It's an Advent wreath, you nit, it's supposed to look like that! That rose one's for the third week of Advent, Gaudete Sunday, right, luv?"
Dory nodded rapidly, apparently too stunned to speak.
"It just means Advent's halfway over now, they're on the home stretch. Now get a move on, Xan, we've got the other dorms to check."
Xander carried the Advent wreath carefully from the room, and Spike paused in the doorway and looked back.
"Do you know your way to the flame-proof room, luv?"
Dory shook her head. Spike held out a hand and wiggled his fingers till she took it.
"You come with us and see what else we've found these past few weeks. You can visit your wreath whenever you want, so long as you're not in class. Don't worry about the candles, they won't go out and they won't burn down too far - Willow has the room behind the kitchen all spelled up.
taruma16 asked for: The sound of footsteps on fresh fallen snow. I just love that soft crunching sound! *g*
Dangerous Decoy, 178 words
Xander lay in wait for what seemed like hours, but could really only have been a few minutes, maybe ten. Still, it was cold, there was snow, so it felt longer. At least he'd thought to put his thermal socks on when he'd had this plan - without them, he'd be missing the feeling in several toes by now.
Ah! There it was! The unmistakeable crunchcrunchcrunch of confident steps on virgin snow. Oh, this was gonna be fun!
With a rebel yell, Xander leaped out from behind the holly bush, lobbing three large snowballs in swift succession at…
"Oh! Sorry, Giles. Spike said you'd be working late tonight so I thought… Huh. Giles, where is Spike…? Aaaaaaaaaaah!"
Proving he was evil and omniscient once again, Spike had thrust a handful of fresh snow down Xander's pants.
"You should know by now you'll never get one over on me, luv. Ripper here agreed to be the decoy."
Xander swallowed hard and turned back towards Giles, unsurprised to see the older man grinning wickedly, several snowballs piled at his feet.
truly_tazi asked for: Too much eggnog and tinsel. :)
Xander woke slowly, head pounding, stomach hitching queasily. He didn't remember much after the eggnog and… Nope, his memory pretty much ended at that third glass of nog. Obviously, he hadn't been the only one to spike it after Giles had followed the weak-as-water recipe he'd used from home.
He tried to move.
"Ow. And ow. And… huh?"
Carefully, he pried open one sore eye and squinted along his left arm to his wrist.
"I say again - huh?"
What looked like several yards of silver tinsel tied him to the headboard neatly, with a big floppy bow. A panicked wriggle confirmed that his other limbs were likewise bound, and he tried to clear the nog-fog from his head with a shake.
"Ow! Dammit! Oh, great, now I need to pee. Spike! Get your pale, undead ass back in here and let me go before I wet the bed!"
Also posted here.