ETA: GIP! Kinda! *g* Thank you literati for my Grungefic icon and for nagging at me to use it some time this year.
This chapter is dedicated to secondverse cos she requested it for the Yinathon (and I think you gave me a bunny with your alternate suggestion too). It also belongs to Shakatany, who nominated me at SoGA for Outstanding Fandom Contribution for my LJ community bloodclaim. Thank you, darlin', I hope you both don't mind sharing!
Rating: NC-17/dirty!bad!wrong!nasty! overall
Feedback: darkhavens @ slashverse.com (but not right now cos my server's screwed, thank you OXHosting.)
Concrit: by email, please (see above)
Disclaimer: Not mine, never will be. No harm, no foul, no money made.
Warnings/Squicks: This is very early S1 Spander so Xander is 16, but I'm a Brit so that makes him legal over here, so there. It is also rather dark but I have no clue about whether or not Xander will still have a heartbeat at the end of it, though he will still certainly have a Spike. ;)
Summary: I hated that Xander was never allowed to grieve for the loss of Jesse, who appeared to be his only male friend. In this fic he grieves, feels guilt and even despair... and then he meets up with Spike in a dingy little club and Spike decides to keep him for his own.
Previous chapters: here
Notes: I sat down one day to write a new chapter of my WiP Step By Step and this happened. I had no idea what it was or where it was going, and my Grungemuse has only seen fit to share the vaguest of details with me. She writes what she wants and uses my fingers to do the work.
And now, on with the fic!
"Is this what's so important, luv? This worth the fuss you made?" But no, his pet's still focussed on the bag.
One flex of bicep, triceps, bone and cartilage and what was once a stake is now a scattering of splinters. Spike reaches in again and grabs a battered tin designed to hold tobacco, though he doubts from Pretty's face that what's inside is quite as innocent as that.
"Brought your stash along, eh, Pet? That's thoughtful, that is; hope you'll let me share."
Ignoring shaking hands that try to wrest the tin away, Spike uses black, chipped nails to pry the lid. He hardly even registers the monotonic 'nonononono' as the lid resists his attempts to ease it free.
And then it pops.
A tiny cloud of dust and ash flies up and tumbles back down to the quilt, and then he realises that what had been inside the tin was what his pet had made the focus of his sorry life.
The boy is scrabbling, trying to catch each flake, each dusty smear, and all Spike hears is 'Jesse. Jesse. Oh Gods, Jesse, no. I'm sorry. I'm so sorry...'
"Jesse! No, please don't... I'm sorry. Jesse, please... Don't leave me! Don't, please, Jesse... No! Come back!"
Spike is stunned, confused, and then realisation dawns. His pet's been carrying round a dusted vamp. The grief, the guilt, the anguish, all the pain he's held inside, is pouring out with each recaptured fleck. And when Spike reaches out to draw him close and offer comfort, his pretty doesn't even seem to see. He's acting like he hasn't noticed Spike is on the bed, too busy trying to gather up his mate.
"Pretty, leave it be now. There's nothing to be done. There's nothing you can do with all that dust but build a shrine to it, and the only vamp you'll worship here is me."
And Spike understands he might as well have spoken in Fyarl for all the good his remonstrations do. His pet is madly clawing at the smears and streaks of black, trying to scrape them back into the tin. Enough's enough.
Trying not to damage his new toy, well, not too much, Spike reaches out and takes a gentle hold of both slim wrists. He's somehow not surprised to have to clamp down pretty hard when a screaming snarling wildcat tries to twist and throw him off.
"Let me go, you bastard! Have to... Can't just let him... No!"
Spike wonders why his pet is so much stronger than he looks, but realises now is not the time. Instead he wraps his arms around the boy and tumbles backwards, to land them in a heap beside the bed.
A few frantic moments later and he's got his pretty pinned; hand and foot and naked groin to groin, their dampened towels a tangled knot beside their madly writhing hips. Spike's interest takes a turn towards the erotic for a moment but his feral beauty isn't in the mood for fun and games. Then Spike is using every ounce of strength to hold him down, to keep him down, to stop him damaging them both.
Minutes pass and Spike is trying in vain not to react to the body that's still trapped beneath his own. His cock is hard and hungry, and every heave and buck only serves to dial the fever up a notch. He's oh so very tempted to lean in and take a taste, just steal a nip, a sip, a tiny dram of what is his, and really, who's to say that that would be so very wrong?
Spike adjusts his grip and moves in fast, fangs dropping smoothly, features rearranging as he goes. His Pretty has no chance to counteract the demon's speed and whines as Spike's incisors sink in deep.
The first ambrosial droplet of that liquor on his tongue is tinged with bitter fear and defeat. Spike can't help compare it to the taste he had before, the sweetness of that gift so freely given. He wonders if he'll ever taste its like again in time, if Pretty will forgive him this harsh act.
The struggling grows weaker as Spike takes each new draught; the exertion and the draining take their toll. Eventually the boy is lying motionless and cowed, and steady streams of tears bathe his face. His eyes are screwed shut tight, his body limp, his breathing shallow, and Spike figures out he thinks he's going to die.
One last gentle lick and Spike pulls back and rolls aside, gathering his boy into his arms, a soft embrace.
"Didn't want to do that, luv. Didn't have a choice. You passed the point of talking some time back. Couldn't let you do that to yourself, it wasn't right. Your mate'd say the same if he was here, you know he would. He'd want you to move on, you soppy git."
Xander sniffs and burrows closer, only half aware. He could easily get used to being held like this, like something precious; could easily learn to need this vampire's touch.
"Now I know what broke you I can fix you, Pet, I swear. I'll never let you hurt like that again."
A promise. No one ever makes him promises like that. None had ever known that they were needed. And yet, in one short day, his needs and wants and fears and lusts have been stripped down to basics and rebuilt, at least a little. For that he owes the monster in whose arms he blindly lies.
"S... Sorry. I just couldn't... He was..." Sobs begin anew, as Xander turns his face towards the bed. "I loved him. He was mine! She had no right to... but she did. And then he... and I said... and he was gone. I'd do anything to bring him back, anything at all! He's the only one who really understood..."
Xander moves his head again and winces at the pain - the knife wound and the bite are both still sore. He knows he should be freaking, should be begging for his life, but, well, he isn’t being drained right now, that’s of the good, right?
His sigh is part confusion, part exhaustion, and some pain. He wonders when the comforting will end. Spike shifts and Xander figures that the answer would be now, then goes to do some shifting of his own.
“Where d’you think you’re going, Pet? Not finished with you yet. Just need to get you rearranged a bit.” And Xander lets himself be tugged and pushed and gently twisted until his vampire mattress is content.
“That’s better. Now, we need to fix you up a little, luv. You’ve taken quite a beating since we met, and some before. You’ve bruises on your bruises, you’ve got scrapes and cuts and bites, and you’ve probably got a carpet burn or two. If you trust me I can take away the worst of that tonight. You’ll get out of bed tomorrow good as new, or near enough. But you have to trust me, Pretty; I can’t do it if you don’t. It’d probably make you sicker than you were…”
Spike waits and pets and strokes and knows his lies are going to work, his lovely boy’s too weak from rapid blood loss to resist. He nods and Spike decides that’s not enough, he wants the words. He tilts his new toy’s head to catch his eye.
“I’ve gotta hear it, luv. You need to say it, clear and true. Tell the world you trust me with your life.”
His reddened eyelids flicker and he licks his trembling lips, and Spike can feel the exultation rise.
“I trust you Spike. I know that you’re a demon and you kill, but I trust you not to cause me too much pain. You… care for me. I don’t understand why, but you do, and I believe that when you change your mind you’ll make that painless too.”
Spike isn’t sure he likes his boy’s assumption there at all, but he’s said the magic words and that’s what counts. He lifts his wrist and uses one sharp fang to nick a vein, then holds the bleeding limb to Pretty’s mouth.
“Drink up, Pet, it’ll cure whatever ails you soon enough. It’ll help build up the strength you’ve lost as well. It wont hurt you none, you trust me, yeah? It’ll heal you up a treat. Can’t wait to get you back up on your feet so we can play.”
Spike curls his tongue behind his teeth and gives a sexy grin, and his Kitten swallows hard and starts to suck.