Chapters: Chapter 3/?
Summary: Spike is the co-owner of a well-known casino known as The Grand Aurelius. Xander is an upcoming professional poker player who is climbing up the leader board. After becoming an infamous and top professional poker player, Spike never played poker again and refused all challengers that was thrown his way; that is until Xander catches more than his eye. HAU
Disclaimer: I own none of these characters and they rightfully belong to Joss Whedon.
Feedback: Very much appreciated
Beta'ed: By lecaryk
Past chapters here
“Oz, tell me was that person really who I thought he was?”
“Er, okay, he wasn’t who you thought he was.”
Xander shot Oz a glare. “I can’t believe it! First day I’m supposed to make an impression to the great poker player to play with him and I’ve just made a mess by making a fool of myself. The Master will so kick my butt!” he groaned.
Oz look at his friend and wondered for the hundredth time in his existence how could this man be so oblivious.
“Xander, he totally knew your name and offered even ‘a game or two.’ Which part did you not hear?”
“He probably said that out of politeness, you know since he have to suddenly go and all.”
“Oh I’m not so sure about that young man.”
They both look up to see the owner of the feminine voice. Curly brown sandy hair, red coloured tall high heel walking shoes, a smart outfit showing off her curves, boobs just the right size and a smile to die for. Xander was sure he would have go after this sort of girls once upon a time, even with the age difference; but now, he was more interested in compact muscled body, high cheekbones, white blond hair and mesmerizing blue eyes. Yup, he definitely had grown up.
“Ah, hi, I’m Xander,” he said awkwardly.
And once again Xander have to admire his friend calm, cool collectedness. Oz never seemed to stumble and with him around there was never a moment of awkwardness. It was as though they guy was comfortable with who he was. Not that Xander could blame him, he vaguely remembered where all the girls used to go after his best friend especially when he was inside a band. God, why did life seem to be so high school sometimes?
“Yes, I know you guys are. Alexander Lavelle Harris and Daniel Osbourne. I’m Cordelia Chase by the way, human resource manager of The Grand Aurelius,” the woman greeted sticking out her hand.
Xander gasped. How was it possible that so many people knew his name even before he knew them?
He dumbly shook her hand before she shook Oz and watch her as she sat down when the waiter arrived with their drinks.
Cordelia nodded to the waiter. “Put it on tab on Spike’s bill,” she said before picking up the wine and drinking it herself.
Xander couldn’t help but chuckle watching Cordelia with an air around her as though she owned the place. She seemed highly confident of herself and didn’t take in account that she was drinking her boss’s drink.
He himself took a sip of his glass of coke before asking curiously, “hey, how did you and ah, Mr. Spike-“
He had not finish his sentence before Cordelia spit out her wine that she was drinking. He grimaced, that must have some lousy wine.
“Mr. Spike? Shit, I got to tell him this. That was way funny, Mr. Spike? Please, I beg you don’t call him that in front of him Xander. I don’t think you would like it either if we call you Mr. Harris as well.”
Xander bristled. He sure as hell didn’t like people calling him by his father’s name.
“Well, how did you guys know me, I mean like…” he trailed off as he she saw her looking amused at what was beginnings of a babble.
“From what I heard, you defeated the Master?”
Cordelia could not believe her eyes as this…this Xander merely looked surprised before nodding his head hesitantly. She was sure that if it was anyone else, they would have been gloating right now but no, this man just acted as though he couldn’t see the glory of it all.
Damn, she can just see all the predators eyeing him now. Young, innocent, oblivious yet so very skilful, what the world is becoming into.
She shook her head slightly. If Spike was going to take an interest in this upcoming professional, she sure as hell going to interfere and make sure Xander will not lose his innocence by that bad, very very bad, man.
“Just so you know Xander, word passes very fast in the underground gambling world, I would expect most professional players would know your name very soon.”
Cordelia saw when Xander looked…shocked. She watch as Xander quickly excuse himself-probably out of embarrassment and purely of not knowing what to say- claiming he had to go to the washroom before scampering away.
As she watch the young man banging into a waiter, she heard a sigh. She turned to look at Xander’s best friend and couldn’t help but ask, “are you sure his twenty-four years old?”
Cordelia was surprised to see the handsome young man smile and chuckle a little, “yeah, positive. Let’s just say Xander has always been insecure and oblivious. It’s in him and well he never really went out to see the world. Never really see things in life until I dragged him out of his private shell of his to help convert his talent into something that will help him gain confidence.”
Cordelia eyed Oz. “I suppose you’re he's caretaker then.”
She was surprised again when Oz’s face suddenly lost all traces of smile and his face held a serious image of a man protecting someone in his family. “I take care of my friends, especially friends like Xander.”
A/n: This chapter is actually to emphasize the friendship between Xander and Oz which would come in useful later on. Hope you guys enjoy. More will be coming your way.