Author: josie_h@... (rngrdead )
Also archived at: http://www.livejournal.com/tools/memories.bml?user=rngrdead
Rating: Mature Audiences – for content and themes, this bit not so much.
Summary: Post S7… What if a new watcher/ex Scoobie caught on patrol and a certain law firm had an agenda… and a vampire.
Spoilers: Hardly any ... but some Canon is Post S7 BtVS and S5 AtS.
Warnings: M/M – if you don't like boys together, don't play here!
Special Extra for the Festive Season
It had been three years…
The two vampires had never intended they be away from their friends that long, but after the distress of finding and returning all the changelings, their meeting with the Mistress had resulted in them being handed a note from Willow, and tickets to England with strict instructions to visit.
And visit they did, but the reception was not the one Spike expected. They had worked with the High Mistress Willow and her wiccans from the time they found Richard… literally relied on them for advice whenever new changelings were found. Even so, the prospect of two vampires, albeit white hats, ensouled Sire and mated Childe, residing in the quiet English coven was something Spike did… worry about prior to.
Instead of a problem, however, they were welcomed warmly and feted as heroes. Something that made more sense as the weeks went on and many of the rescued English changelings paid a visit, indeed there were seven living permanently at the coven, the provided glamours meaning they were able to interact in the wider community once more.
After a hundred plus years, William the Bloody’s old reputation still stood in Europe. His Hellmouth then LA exploits in more recent times were still talked about in the demon and magical community, yet it was the Wolfram and Hart survival of he and his fully mated Childe, and the consequent rescue of so many others, that became the stuff of legend. The consequence was a reputation of ‘older statesman’ combined with ‘celebrity’ status. Every demon and magical community thrilled if the couple paid a visit.
Xander’s reunion with Willow was as always, emotional and touching, and required much feeding from his Mate just before they entered the property. Spike gave the witch a nod from the door then withdrew to allow his Childe time with their long time friend.
Willow gasped as Xander entered the room, his body was toned and wavy hair, long (at his Sire’s insistence). His signature was so very strong now, as was the hug she received and it had only been a year. At only three and a bit years in vampire terms, the Wiccan community identified him as Mated Master Vampire, astonishing to his old friend, yet a natural result of him feeding exclusively from his Mated Sire, and having his physical skills honed nightly by Spike.
She grinned into his leather-clad chest as he held her. Spike had of course, insisted on hiring a motorbike to ride from Heathrow to the coven, though the leathers had ‘come with’.
“I’m so glad you came sweetie… We’re all so glad! And this time it will be easier – a well earned holiday OK?”
“You OK with two vampires on campus for leisure reasons then?”
“Please tell me you’re not worried? Did you think I was worried? I really didn’t think I gave the impression of worried… I’m sorry if I…”
Xander cut her off by laughing heartily and kissing her on the temple. “Don’t ever change Will… just for me… keep the babble dial on high yeah?”
The next three years in Europe was marked by joy and sadness. After a week at the coven the Sire took his dear Childe to all the cities the older vampire adored. The sadness, the visit to Spike's family grave.
They fought alongside the covens when needed, met a few of the new Slayers, sometimes a nervous experience though really had no need to work or worry – their accommodation was always guaranteed. The Master Vampire and his Mate, were treated with deep respect wherever they went, indeed feted by his demons and wiccans alike. But, after a year residing at the Cambridge Coven (and visiting Willow most weekends), Xander begged his Sire. The pull from ‘across the pond’, as Spike always put it, was strong. And Spike agreed, they would go ‘home’ the following Christmas.
It was early Christmas Eve when the vampires arrived at Mistress Blackrainbow’s facility and as before the Mistress greeted them enthusiastically.
“My wonderful vampires! Willow has been wonderful in keeping us up to date with your exploits!”
Spike smirked a little, “Not all of ‘em I hope,” then made a point of reaching over and squeezing his Mate’s backside affectionately.
The Mistress slapped him gently and grinned, “Now that I would have paid to hear! Come on we’ve got some news too. You no doubt know about the three main drivers of that horrid project? Manners…”
Xander fell momentarily into game face but soon regained his composure as Spike took his hand and squeezed hard. It was Spike who answered for them both, “Yeah we heard, some of ‘is own medicine or some such.”
“Indeed. We eventually located his water abode here and have been monitoring his progress.”
“Meaning we have a camera there now. It seems he has adapted reasonably well to life as an invertebrate.”
Xander stared at the screen, the image of a large octopus dominated, the eyes leaving no doubt as to who it was. But Xander had seen so many of those eyes as he and Spike had performed rescue after rescue. Xander;s response was some sadness but little remorse for the fate of one so bent on ‘adjusting’ others for profit.
Again it was his Sire who spoke, “Spineless bastard didn’t seem to have a problem with his 'spineless' attitude as a human.”
"So perhaps his condition is a best fit?!" The Mistress hardly missed a beat as she led them to their room. Bags were stowed before they were invited to visit their long time friends.
There was a plastic Christmas tree in the shallows of Dean and Richard’s abode – the decorations rather ‘beachie’, but it still reminded the two vampires of the season, and they had presents.
Dean and Richard greeted The Mistress and their guests with squeaks and gentle touches before the witch adjourned and left the two vampires to slide down at the side of the slightly warm home pool to be stroked by the distended hands of both men, followed by both vampires venturing to stroke faces, shoulders then the sensitive tails.
Richard’s high pitched noises were matched by those of Dean's, and more delightfully, echoed from behind the wall (a second enclosure had been adjusted so the couple Spike and Xander had ‘bought’ on Ebay had constant access to the mermen).
They knew their two friends had both sired fully formed mer-children to the lovely female couple Five children in total, a girl and a boy to Dean’s partner, and twin girls then a boy to Richard’s.
The children were growing up cared for by their partnered mothers, but swam with their fathers daily and were encouraged to interact. There was talk of more offspring as the now very happy family ‘pod’ with loving parents assisted the little ones to dive and hunt … and taught them human skills including how to ‘speak at the smartboard’. Three children coming up for two and a half, while their siblings were just over a year.
Xander and Spike were both utterly besotted by the (all still blonde) three girl and two little boy mer-people, the tiny children leaving their mothers’ sides to brave the shallows of the wide pool and greet the vampires at their fathers’ sides.
Spike smiled as he presented their dear friend Richard (and family) with three fresh, very large, and ‘coven blessed for the Solstice’ salmon.
“Merry Christmas to you all pet.”
Despite Richard and Dean’s enthusiastic response, and associated excited flips by the mothers of their children, the two vampires did not miss that the mermen nodding with slightly sad gratitude to a kind coven attendant who immediately took the present so it might be readied - distended hands still reliant on others to cut food for the children.
The two youngest were still exclusively at a suckling age but three had started to eat fish some year or so previously, consequently the salmon proved a marvelous hit, as did the dive rings and two balls the vampires brought, though the two youngest still needed to swim close by, near touching an adult to enjoy the game of ‘get the ring’.
It was winter, so the family pools were artificially warmed and the tiny ones kept inside for the most part, protected from both the cold and nasty storms. But for the older mer-people it was a different story. It didn’t escape the vampires’ notice, with the winter months and their on going role as researchers, the ‘dads’ now carried some extra weight. The previously slim Richard now sporting a ‘healthy paunch’, his midriff a more substantial and tail far thicker than before. Dean too was larger, not unhealthily fat, simply carrying the mass needed to swim in the colder waters. Indeed all the merfolk bore the signs of the season, the chill of winter waters driving bodies to preserve the warmth.
They ate a meal together, Spike with copious quantities of blood and Xander feeding from his Sire as their friends’ youngest took milk from their mothers. Xander and Spike fortunately did not really feel the cold and remained sitting in the water with the family (twenty seven degrees would normally have chilled any human after an hour or so of inaction). The children were romping around the shallows (under their mothers’ careful supervision) and Richard grinned at the boys before leaning up to type into the converter, “No regrets OK?...” He paused for a caress from his still beautiful Dean before finishing, “Merry Solstice… or Christmas… We’re family… and always… MUCH love.”
Spike kissed their changed friend, then gave Dean a peck on the cheek, and finally claimed his Childe’s lips firmly. Moments later the Sire delighted in watching Xander – always a good swimmer, take advantage of his lack of need to breathe and challenge the three mer-youngsters to a game of tag. He was soon to find that the children were too swift for him, but still seemed to enjoy being caught, hugged and tickled.
The adults all lay in the shallows simply observing with pleasure as ‘Uncle Xander’ feigned distress then proceeded to evoke delighted squeaks from the three children. The two tiny ones fell asleep on their mothers stomachs, Dean and Richard reclined into a quiet embrace and Spike simply enjoyed the spectacle. Who knew what the next year would bring, but this truly was a time to be thankful…………….