Title: The Big One
Concrit: darkhavens @ slashverse.com. If you spot a typo, please feel free to tell me in comments. I want you to!
Disclaimer: Not mine, never will be. No harm, no foul, no money made.
Summary: Xander and Spike are about to seal the deal of a lifetime, but nature intervenes. Futurefic.
Notes: Written for reremouse, who requested "The Spike and Xander from this story again - five years in the future. Your prompt is 'captain of industry' and I want a necktie involved."
Xander dropped to his knees and scrabbled around in the shadows beneath his desk for his other sock, wasting precious seconds before finding it tangled around one of the gleaming casters of his new office chair.
New office furniture - in just about any of their offices - called for lots of celebratory, energetic, furniture-christening sex with his terminally hot undead business partner.
He tugged the misshapen silk over his anklebone, slipped his foot into its hand-crafted, carefully polished brown leather shoe, and turned to see if Spike was fully dressed yet.
What he was was naked.
Pressed, from nose to toes, belly up against the necro-tinted south-facing solid glass wall of Xander's office, Spike was gloriously naked save for Xander's second favorite raw silk tie - a geometric print of gold and bronze with real silver thread, a Christmas gift from Giles the year before.
Forty floors below, the traffic looked like Matchbox toys and the people looked like tiny plastic men from model train sets. Spike didn't even bother glancing down, so intent was he on watching the final shimmering fingernail of reddish gold sun sink slowly beneath the waves of the Pacific.
Spike's eyes slid closed and his forehead bounced once off the vampire-proof glass before he turned to look at Xander, who was looking back at him with eyes brim full of panic and frustration, with his arms brim full of Spike's discarded clothes.
"Jesus, Spike, hurry up and get dressed! Jurgensen will be here in fifteen minutes for the signing!"
The thrown clothes hit Spike's chest and fell unheeded to the carpet, partially covering his polished toenails - bronze and gold to match the tie.
"Nah, he won't." Spike flexed his toes in the deep, grey wool of the carpet - the only outward sign of guilt he dared allow himself. "The phone went just before I came in here; Rebecca took the call and I said I'd tell you. Wasn't my fault you jumped me for some hot and sweaty office action. Nice chair, by the way."
Xander blinked once, then twice, looked over his shoulder at the door, and then back at Spike, uncomprehending.
"Jurgensen's not coming, luv. His assistant called to let us know he wouldn't be able to make it today."
Xander's face went completely blank, and with a sigh, Spike began to wriggle his way into his jeans.
"Rebecca pulled one of her snake-charming tricks and got the bloke to admit that Jurgensen had called from a taxi on his way to the airport. Seems his little girl's gone into labour two months early and he's flying up to hold her hand and scare the doctors into treating her right, or some such rot."
The news broke Xander's rigid control, a deep furrow appearing between his eyebrows as the worry set in.
Spike held up a hand before he could even take a breath.
"I've already told her to track down whoever we've got up in Washington State and to get them over to the hospital with a gift basket. I figure something pretty but comfortable for the new mum and some of those tiny doll-sized clothes for the little one, like the girls got for Ellen when she had her preemie at the Portland house."
Spike stepped up into Xander's personal space, hooked his forefingers into Xander's nearest belt loops and gave them a tug.
"He's not backing out of the contract, Xan. He hasn't suddenly found another firm that can do what we do, as well or as fast as we can do it for the prices we charge. He's more worried about his little girl and her little girl to even remember what his name is right now, much less think about us. And tomorrow, Rebecca will call that daft assistant of his and charm him into giving her a heads-up when Jurgensen's ready to deal."
Xander's arms came up to loop around Spike's back as he dropped his head to bring their foreheads together. He curled his fists around the dangling tail of the tie that followed the line of Spike's spine.
"I know. I know, it's just..." He broke off with a sigh, and Spike echoed it.
"This was going to be 'The Big One', yeah, I know that too. And it will be, eventually. We just have to not go crazy before everybody's signed on the dotted line and promised the souls of their first born to the lawyers. After that, we've got what - four? five? years to earn the one point seven billion dollars he's paying us, and then we're out of here, free and clear, everybody wins."
Spike tilted his chin and angled his head to bury his nose in the sprinkling of silver at Xander's temple.
"You're starting to look all dignified and masterful now, luv. A little bit longer and you'll be perfectly aged, just like that cognac my dealer found last month - smooth and dark, all woodsmoke and spices, with a hint of molasses and cinnamon, honey sweet. Perfect."
A gentle knock at the door broke the mood and Xander eased back to roll his eyes at Spike.
"It should probably creep me out that you're comparing me to your third favorite beverage in the world, after blood and hot chocolate, but all it does is get me hot." He chuckled. "You've ruined me for anyone else, Spike. Looks like you're stuck with me."
There was another tap-tap-tap at the door and then it opened. Captains of industry apparently weren't allowed to go home and pout when a billion dollar deal got postponed. Not when they had an assistant as scarily efficient as Rebecca and a conference call scheduled for nine p.m.
Life went on, regardless.
Well, for another four or five years, at least.