Title: Navigating Rough Water
Feedback: Love it!
Disclaimer: Don’t own any of the characters, etc.
Warnings/Squicks: Rape, non-con S/Aus, illusions to child abuse, M/M
Summary: Spike and Xander, with life not easy for either, the two bumpy paths cross and lead to an unlikely friendship and more.
Notes: Set in season two during the Angelus phase.
Notes 2: Thanks once again to my fantastic and ever hard working beta sublimatedangel and to 50ftqueenie for the making the process smoother and all the support.
Links to previous parts:
The melancholy mood of earlier lifted and Xander was once again creeping round the warehouse in the dark, questioning his sanity.
“Thaw thomething round here Ralf, I know I did.”
“You and your imagination are gonna get us thaked, Ted, nextht you’ll be telling me you think it’th the Thlayer.”
The two minions lisped around their fangs as Xander crouched in the bushes a couple of feet from Spike's window. ‘I’m small, you can’t see me,’ repeating wildly in his brain as he hoped that for once in his life the mantra worked.
“DON’T thay things like that Ralf, 'th'not nithe, thcaring me tho.
“Thut up, will you? Can't hear a damn thing with you blathering on.”
The voices faded into the distance. ‘Angelus isn't turning the sharpest pencils in the box.’ The thought of mixing vampires and a saying about pencils had Xander chuckling very quietly to himself, crawling out of the bushes and brushing himself off.
A glance through the boards to check that Spike was alone revealed the wheelchair but no Spike.
“Man, where is he?” Xander breathed whilst shifting from foot to foot, debating the logic of going in if Spike was absent. Deciding in was more healthy than out, he removed the board, slipped in and, with some jiggling, managed to prop it back in place. He normally didn’t bother, but it was earlier than usual and with the minions wandering about, it seemed prudent.
Sifting through the pockets of his pants, he found the tail end of a candle. Spike had explained that he didn’t need light, really, and it was just another way Angelus could dominate him: keeping him in the dark unless he begged for light, and never supplying more than a few candles at a time.
Rolling the flint with his thumb a couple of times to get his lighter to catch, he lit the candle and looked around. He’d never been here without Spike in the room.
“Xander, that you, pet?” A wet sounding voice drifted from beyond the far side of the bed.
“Spike?” Xander shot round the far side of the bed and jolted to a halt.
Laying on the floor, face bruised and lip split and with what looked like a broken arm, was Spike.
“Fuck!” The expletive burst from Xander’s mouth before he could stop it.
“That about sums it up, pet.” Spike looked down at himself “Don’t suppose you could give me a hand up on to the bed?”
Spike wasn’t sure the boy would. In all their talks, even coming through the window, Xander wouldn’t get close to him, waiting 'til he rolled out the way before coming in. Trust was being built, but slowly.
Xander's eyes widened. ‘Pick him up!’...‘Don't get close to him!’ The fear scent doubled in the room and Spike sighed.
“S’all right pet, I know you don’t trust me yet, no reason to. Don’t suppose you’ve any blood on you?”
“Sorry Spike, I don’t. I couldn’t afford to get any at the moment anyway.”
“Fuck,” snarled Spike, the pain in his arm throbbing and teasing away, bringing his demon to the front.
Xander stood blinking, hyena stirring. ‘Won’t hurt us, trust him.’ Even the solider softened with a ‘Damaged comrade.' It was Xander, though, who thought back over the nights of talking and stories.
Decision made, he moved forward.
“You bite me, Blondie, and there will be no more blood deliveries for you!” he joked to cover his nervousness.
Spike, shocked momentarily into silence, allowed the warm hands to slide under his arms and swing his good one up over Xander’s shoulder. It didn’t prevent him from noticing the flinch Xander gave as his weight settled down across the slightly taller frame.
The demon face he’d been shaking off surged forward. ‘Fucking Bastard, the kid’s taken a kicking again.’
“Spike, you’re scaring me. You promised no biting.”
“Sorry pet, just helps with the pain,” Spike lied. He knew the boy wouldn’t want it brought up.
“Pet? Why have you got leaves in your hair?” Spike asked as Xander lowered him onto the bed.
“I do? Thought I got them all. I had to crawl into some bushes, there were a couple of minions lurking about outside.”
“Fuckin’ hell, Xander, why did you stay around? They might have noticed you.” Spike was angry at the chance Xander had taken. “I can’t bloody do anything to stop them if they catch you.”
“Shhh Spike, it's okay, they didn’t even see me.” Xander petted the upset vampire.
Spike calmed down. “They didn’t? Bloody lousy minions Angelus has these days.”
“Yep,” said Xander as he chuckled over his pencil thoughts afterwards.
“Pet.” Spike's serious tone caught Xander's attention.
“You think you can set this? Don’t want it healing crooked.”
“But… we don’t have anything for the pain, I might hurt you.” The concern in Xander voice warmed Spike. It had been a long time since any one had really bothered about hurting him.
“S’all right, better now than to have to re-break it later,” Spike crooned, trying to calm the boy.
“Okay, if you’re sure. I’m not much good at stuff like this,” Xander muttered.
“Stop it.” Xander jerked at the cross tone in Spike's voice.
“You’ll do fine and stop putting yourself down all the time. You are better at things than you can believe. No bloody self-confidence, that’s your problem.”
Spike was panting and shaking by the time they had set his arm. He’d bitten clean through the pillow in his mouth, and Xander was sweating, the muscles in his arms sore from the continued pull and push of manipulation.
Trying to lighten the situation Xander quipped, “Does it taste like marshmallow?”
Spike chuckled weakly and replied, “Not bloody likely, I’ve feathers in me fangs now!”
Xander looked at Spike. He was so pale now as to be almost translucent, not his usual marble white.
“You gonna be okay, Spike? I mean, can you get some blood from somewhere?”
“I’ll be okay, someone will bring some round eventually.” Spike tried to sound dismissive, but the toll from another beating on top of his already injured body made the reply land just that little bit this side of convincing.
Xander walked over to the bathroom and washed his hands. Thinking to himself, ‘God, he looks so pale. Looks like he could dust at just the thought of a stake.’
Walking back out, he studied Spike. So small, lost in the huge old bed with its dark wood and musty blood covered sheets.
Carefully sitting on the edge of the bed, he continued to study Spike.
God, why was the boy looking at him so intently? Felt like every layer Spike had constructed around himself over the years was being scraped away, leaving rawness behind.
“What?” Spike snapped uncomfortably.
“Can you… can you just take a bit?” Xander paused. “I mean not drain me?”
Amazement welled up in Spike; the boy was offering his blood. “Course I can, not some bloody minion, am I?”
Xander cringed at Spike's tone and dropped his head to study his hands.
Spike felt worse than dog shit, here was the boy offering his blood and all he did was make him feel bad.
“Shhh, it’s not like that, sorry.” Spike reached for Xander and pulled him closer, feeling the boy stiffen then relax in his grasp. Stroking his hair, he let the boy calm.
“Not on the neck though; Buffy or someone might see it. You can do it elsewhere, can’t you?”
“Sure; inside of the upper arm is best if you need to keep it hidden. Are you sure?”
A shaky but audible, “Yes.”
Mindful of his broken arm, he pulled the boy on to his lap, tucking him under his bad shoulder.
“Won’t hurt you pet, promise.” Spike thought for a moment, maybe it’d be best to warn the boy, didn’t want him getting spooked.
“Pet.” At Spike's serious tone, Xander looked up into his face.
“You might get a little excited when I do this, it happens sometimes. It’s just the bite, okay?”
“Yeah, hard, I probably will too.”
“Oh.” Xander stiffened, panic surging through him. ‘NO, NO, Spike couldn’t want that, it hurt, every time, it hurt.’
Spike growled low in his chest, Xander’s heartbeat pounding in his ears, the fear smell so strong he was fighting to keep his demon under control. ‘Fucking hell, rape?’ Keeping his tone light, he hurried on.
“Normally it’s used for seducing prey, but nothing will happen. I promise, okay? Won’t touch you, promise.”
Xander nodded slightly; biting his lip, he dropped his eyes back to his lap.
Lifting Xander's left arm, he pulled up the sleeve and started to lave the soft part of the inside, numbing and bringing the endorphins out to play. Xander watched through slitted eyes and whimpered as he started to harden, his other hand clenching and relaxing with nerves.
The fangs slipped in like a hot knife into butter. The first draw of blood was sweet and chocolaty, filled with life and strength and, yes, friendship and kindness.
Spike moaned; it had been so long. He started to feel himself harden and without removing his fangs, twisted Xander away so he wouldn’t feel it. ‘Don’t want to scar the kid any more than can be helped,’ he justified it to himself. ‘Might not offer again, else.’ ‘Fucking hard enough life anyway, won’t make it worse.’
Listening for the tell tale trip in the boy's heartbeat that meant enough, he withdrew, licking over the holes to seal them.
Xander came down off the high, shaking slightly. He started to pull away.
“Wait.” Spike looked uncomfortable for a second, then said, “Look, I can give you something... won’t protect you from Angelus, could make him even madder if he ever gets hold of you, but it'll stop the minions, anyone’s minions.”
Biting down on his thumb, he offered it to Xander.
“Puts a kind of tracer in your blood, says you belong to me. Master Vamp an' all that, they shouldn’t mess with you.”
“Buffy won’t be able to tell?”
“Nope, it just comes out in your scent a little.”
Xander looked dubiously at Spike's thumb.
“Look, you don’t have to take it, I just thought…” Spike trailed off as Xander’s warm hand wrapped around his and he slid the blood covered thumb into his mouth. The tentative licking and soft sucking tightened the already restricted movement in his jeans. Barely holding back a gasp, Spike ducked behind Xander’s shoulder. ‘Will not scare the boy,’ he thought as his demon rushed forward.
The warm hand on his ridges, petting, brought him back.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to hurt you.”
“Didn’t hurt,” Spike ground out.
“Oh.” Xander's eyes were wide, making him look like one of the characters from a manga cartoon.
The boy’s slow crawl off his lap didn't help.
“Thank you Xander.” Spike let his true feeling of gratitude show for just a second.
Xander beamed as he walked over to the window.
“Come back soon, okay? We haven’t had much chance to talk today.”
Xander smiled. “Okay, when I can. The others, they’re starting to wonder where I’m going to. May have to patrol for a day or two, but I’ll be back.”
Xander removed the board, checking and slipping out into the night with a last final wave through the window before putting the board back in place.
Spike lay there, smiling with a raging hard on.
And I will make Monday with Ch 7 :~}