kimalis (kimalis) wrote in bloodclaim,
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kimalis
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FIC: Family Bonds Chapter 18

Title: Family Bonds
Pairing: Spander
Rating: ADULT
Summary: After his relationship with Anya fizzles out Xander and Spike become lovers. Xander’s insecurities lead him to seek help from Tara. She discovers a secret from Xander’s past.
Notes: AU begins S6 replacing Hells Bells. No Dawn, Buffy didn’t die, and Season 6 Spuffy? Eewww no.
Feedback and con crit appreciated and lusted for
Disclaimer: not mine, all belongs to Joss and Co. Damn them. And bless them.
Oh kitty_alex! Saviour of the crap chap. I bow down before you. In a non-sexy way, of course.  Unless....
Other chapters are here

 CHAPTER 18
Rose waited by the car until Spike had gotten back into his own seat and Xander was upright and strapped in. She stepped back and waved them off with a smile and a shake of her head.

Xander watched her in the rear view mirror and laughed. “Didn’t know you had a mom Bleachie.”

Spike snorted. “Not to speak ill of the dead mate, but my mum was nowhere near as intimidating as Rosie.”

“Yeah, well she did tell you no monkey business, didn’t she? Obviously she must know you pretty well.”

“But I feel so much better. Between her rules and your rule- which, by the way, you have blown to pieces on numerous occasions this weekend- I am getting bloody frustrated.”

“Aww, poor vamp. But you heard the doc, nothing strenuous until it’s healed.”

“But it doesn’t even hurt that much, surely just a little-”

“No! No little anything. Rose said no and I will not cross Rose. Tom is just too big. You’ll just have to wait.”

Spike snorted, “Then so will you mate.”

“Shit. Stupid rules.”

 
When they reached Xander’s apartment, he pulled in to the empty spot near the front door and went around to help Spike out. Spike tried to brush Xander away until it came to actually climbing out of the door. He doubled over and braced himself on the seat wincing, but trying to cover it. Unsuccessfully.

“See?” Xander said. “You need to listen to Rose, stop trying to do too much, its only one more day, Now let me help.”

Spike reluctantly took Xander’s arm and was half pulled from the car. “It’s just from sitting down, I’m a bit stiff.”

Xander smirked and cast a quick glance at Spike’s groin. “Still?”

“Oh, piss off Harris, that doesn’t help. Get me inside you git.”

Xander held the front door and let Spike go ahead of him up the stairs. He didn’t need Xander’s help, but was relying heavily on the banister for support. “You know Bleachie, is it any wonder you’re feeling like that? Rose was up to her wrists in your entrails, you had a two inch long poisonous stick pulled out of your kidney, which only an hour or so ago was slowly being sliced, diced and julienned each time you moved. Top that all off with an attempt on your life and you still try to tell me you’re up for a roll in the hay?”

“Well we wouldn’t have to roll, you could-”

“And again I say NO! I seem to recall a certain blonde vampire telling me how he was going to practise restraint. Remember him?”

“Yeah, I do, he’s a fucking idiot.”

“Yeah sometimes,” Xander agreed holding his apartment door open for Spike.

“Oi!”

Xander threw himself down on the couch and stretched out, his hand going automatically to the coffee table, patting around and coming up empty. “Oh for the love of-. Can I please have my remote back?”

 “Don’t know what you’re talking about.” Spike helped himself to another bag of blood from the freezer. Only two more left after this one. Spike sighed. He would have to find a way to pay Xander back for the blood. He must have been racking up a pretty hefty bill.

“Spike come on, I can not stand another of your classic British comedies. Something must be lost in translation. I need good American TV, but something mind numbingly brainless so I don’t have to think, I’m so tired, I just want to lie here and look.”

“Why don’t you go have a shower mate, I’ll find us something decent to watch then you can just flop around here and keep me warm.”

“I’m so not falling for that one again. ‘Oi Harris you great soddin’ git, come and lie here I won’t do anything, but my poor little vamp bones are so cold. Brr bloody brr’. I’m on to you pal.” Xander got off the couch and headed for the bedroom. “I’m taking a shower, but not cause you told me to. And I expect to see that remote on the coffee table when I get back mister.”

 
Spike took his mug and curled up on the couch in Xander’s warm spot, pulling a blanket over his legs. He reached under the edge and pulled out the remote, flipping through the channels. Damn colonials just didn’t recognise good funnies when they saw them. He raced through the movie channels, stopping when he heard a familiar whistled tune. Oh, bloody brilliant film this one. The Great Escape. He remembered seeing it at the cinemas in New York when it was new. He and Dru had only just arrived from Vienna and they’d dragged a couple of ushers into the back row and snacked while the movie played. Dru had wanted to hunt down and turn Steve McQueen, while Spike had admired the scrounging skills of James Garner’s Hendley. This was a good compromise, American but a classic. Spike stuffed the remote down the back of his jeans and settled back with his blood.

 
Xander was exhausted. He stood in the hot pounding spray, letting the heat ease his weary body. As far as weekends went, this one was not one of the more relaxing. Exciting yes. Relaxing, far from it. Especially tonight. He still had trouble getting his head around the fact that Buffy had tried to stake Spike. She had always threatened it but he never seriously thought she would follow through. Not unless Spike had done something truly evil, instead of just plain annoying. Xander had to admit that Spike could be annoying, hell, he guessed they all could, but they didn’t go around hurling weapons at each other just cause they were a bit ticked off. It was completely beyond his ability to comprehend. It had happened so fast no one could have stopped her. Spike said he’d seen it coming though, but Xander supposed that the vampire reflexes must have helped out on that score. He’d seen the looks of shock on everyone’s faces, remembered hearing Giles shouts directed at Buffy. He also remembered he’d promised to call Willow. He knew she and Tara would be waiting to hear and would pass on news to Giles. Probably best to get that over with. He hoped they wouldn’t be trying to offer excuses for Buffy, it was hard enough for Xander to understand how Spike could be so calm about it. Not that he could actually do anything; the chip wouldn’t let him.

Xander shut the water off and wrapped himself in a towel. He found his cell phone in his jeans pocket and went to sit on the bed and call Willow. While he waited for her to answer her cell, he switched on the electric blanket and lay back on the pillows.

“Xander how is he, is everything okay?” Willow’s voice showed her worry. He was surprised.

“Yeah it turned out there was a complication from the other night. It’s all been sorted and he’ll be back on his feet tomorrow.”

“Oh good, that’s good. Xander are you okay though?”

“I’m fine Will, I’m just so tired, it’s been a long strange weekend.

 “Yeah it’s been weird alright. I’ve never seen Giles so mad at Buffy before and he doesn’t even like Spike. He didn’t let her out of the training room for ages.”

“Will I don’t want to talk about her right now. I’m just so angry, no, more than angry. She wanted Spike dead. She knew we were friends and she tried to kill him for that. I just can’t deal with that tonight.”

“Xander you’ll have to deal eventually.”

 
Out in the living room, Spike was distracted from the movie by Xander’s muffled voice coming from the bedroom. From the rhythm, Spike could tell he was on the phone. Never one for minding his own business, he fished the remote out and turned the noisy television off, dropping the box on the floor. He could clearly hear Xander, but the voice on the other end was too soft to pick up on.

 
“Willow I’ve just had enough now, this weekend has been so long and, you know, when you’re faced with something like that it kind of makes you wonder why you bother. Why put the effort into making it work?”

“Xander she’s your best friend, you can’t just ignore her, no matter what she did. I think she knows she went too far. Giles was so-”

“I don’t want to talk about him either. I really like him you know, but he let it go too far. It’s just too much to think about right now Will.”

“So you have Spike there still?”

“Yeah he’s still here.”

“How much longer is he staying?”

“I don’t know long till he goes.”

“You going back to work tomorrow?”

“Yeah and I’m kind of looking forward to it, just to get back into routine again.”

“That’ll probably be good for you. Well tell Spike we’re glad she missed. Will you call me when you’re ready to talk about it?”

“Sure Will, just let me get settled back in again. Talk to you later.”

“Bye Xander, take care.”

Xander put his cell down on the night stand and grabbed a pair of sweats. He would like to have been able to talk to Willow about Spike, but it was probably best to wait until he was sure what was going on there anyway. Truth was he had no idea how long Spike was staying. He wasn’t even sure how he felt about Spike leaving. The thought didn’t leave him in a good place though. He was looking forward to work tomorrow; it would bring back a little balance. But it would definitely feel weird not having Spike around during the day.

 
Spike lay back on the couch. So Harris had had enough of him. Thought he’d gone too far and was looking forward to him leaving. It wasn’t what he’d expected, not after how the boy had been responding and initiating some moves of his own. But he could take a hint. He’d be gone before Xander got up in the morning. Avoid any questions; save the lad having to ask him to go. He heard Xander coming out of the bedroom and quickly pulled the blanket over himself, feigning sleep.

 
Xander could have sworn he’d heard the TV a short time ago, but when he got out to the living room Spike was asleep and the TV was off. Xander considered waking Spike and letting him take the bed but what with the minor procedure from Rose and the attack from Buffy, maybe it was best just to leave him there. The couch was a decent bed, pretty comfortable, Spike had pillows and blankets and his injuries were much better now. Nah, just let him be. It was late and he had an early start in the morning, so Xander checked the drapes, switched off the lights and headed off for bed.

 
Spike heard Xander shuffling around for a short time before he finally went to bed. He lay there on the couch in the dark, staring at the ceiling. He must have done something to make the boy change his mind. Maybe Xander blamed him for the demon attacks, a bit of a stretch though; the demons were all after Xander. The possibility of the money issue crossed his mind. Spike had been through a huge amount of blood this weekend while he healed. Maybe the lad had decided the expense was just too much. Again, unlikely, it was his idea in the first place, and he’d insisted on buying more.

What else had he heard Harris tell the witch? It was too much effort, he wanted his routine back, Spike had gone too far. He hadn’t thought it was a big effort. They had seemed to fall into a friendship with surprising ease. Conversation had been simple and not awkward; they always found something to talk about. And routine? Well who could second guess humans. Spike well knew they had their little quirks and if he really thought about it, Harris had been a bit of a stickler for routine. Perhaps having Spike in the house for the weekend just made him realise how much of a disruption it would be.

The thing that really ate at him was Xander saying he thought Spike had let things go too far. Too far? Bloody hell, they’d kissed a few times, barely even a grope and Harris has instigated things just as often if not more than Spike had. Maybe he was expecting Spike to be the strong one and make him stop. Like hell that would ever happen though.  If someone looking like the boy did, tasting like Spike knew he tasted threw himself at you, it would take a stronger man than him to resist.

It could be any all or none of those things. Spike was at a loss. It was clear though that it was time to leave. He had a strange feeling about that. It had only been two days but he’d enjoyed the company. Certainly enjoyed the occasional contact too. In fact he’d been counting on more of that tonight and a lot more tomorrow as soon as he’d healed.And it had appeared that Xander was looking forward to that as well. Wait. That was more likely it. He’d changed his mind somewhere between the Lion and home. The boy was scared. He’d suddenly realised what was likely to happen between them tomorrow and he’d gotten cold feet. Changed his mind about getting into something with a vampire. That sat better with Spike. He was still disappointed but that kind of reaction was more the Harris he knew. Maybe the new man wasn’t as well formed as Spike had thought.

So when to go. Definitely before Harris got up again, and before the sun. Best then just to wait till he could hear the boy in a deep sleep then collect his gear and be off. He should be able to manage the walk; he was feeling one hundred percent on yesterday. Taking out that barb had done the trick, well that and the boosted meds Rose had given him. Just a couple of hours then, to be sure he wouldn’t wake Harris on his way out. Spike waited.

He gave it two hours. Two hours in which he lay and thought, pondered, reflected. Certainly didn’t consider any poncey brooding no matter how he felt about having to leave. When he heard Xander’s deep slow breathing uninterrupted by any bouts of wakefulness, he threw back the covers and made his way to the bedroom.

His bag was in the corner, most of his things were already in it. He just needed to collect a shirt from he bathroom then get his duster from the chair in the bedroom. His duster. That would be in a right state. Covered in blood, torn; having sat like that for a couple of days it would be almost unsalvageable. Time to see a man about a coat. There was a guy Spike knew, a demon guy who could work wonders with leathers. He’d drop it off tomorrow. So, bag was packed there was nothing else for it but to go.  Back in the living room, he put the remote on the table then let himself out without a backwards glance.

 
Xander woke with his alarm just before the sun came up. He slammed his hand on the button to silence it before it could wake Spike. Back to work. No matter how much he looked forward to going, when it actually came time for it he always wished for one more day. Today was no different. He wanted to stay home with Spike just one more day; especially this day. When Spike would be healed and maybe they could get past a few kisses and move things along a bit. Those thoughts were doing nothing to help Xander get up, well, to get out of bed anyway. The thought of what they might have been up to today had given extra life to his morning erection. He sighed. Get in the shower, stop thinking about naked vampire, get to work, come home and maybe do the naked vampire. If he was well enough.

Xander hurried through his ablutions, dressed in the new clothes he had bought for work –dark pants, dark coloured shirt- tidied up his hair then headed out to the kitchen for coffee. Surely Spike would wake up when he went out there, after all vampire hours dictated that this was late evening for him. In the living room, Xander gave the windows a quick glance- best to be sure- then looked over the back of the couch to see if Spike was awake.

The couch was empty. The blanket was tossed over the arm and there was no sleeping vampire. On either couch.

“Spike?” Xander wandered in to the kitchen. Empty. A check of the spare room brought the same result, as did another circuit of the bedroom and bathroom. He was alone. Spike had gone.

He went back out to look for the note that he assumed Spike must have left. Nothing. The notepad was sitting next to the phone, as was the pencil. Blank. Xander went back to the bedroom when a niggling thought hit him. Spike’s things were all gone. Bag and clothes, duster too. 

Xander’s heart leapt into his throat. He’d left. That was what he’d been dreading all weekend. He’d been right. Spike was only here for the blood and the comfortable bed. That made sense. How could he have thought that Spike would be interested in him anyway? Who was he? Twenty-one, not much experience to speak of, nothing to look at, no exciting supernatural powers. Just a guy. Stupid to have believed Spike thought otherwise.  A master vampire and an average Joe. A most unlikely combination.

Despite telling himself that he’d known all along, Xander still felt empty. Spike had truly played along with him, made him feel like there was something there for them. He guessed that’s why Buffy was warning him off. Everyone knew Spike was evil, he was chipped but this was the way he could get at a human. Lead them on, tear them down. Manipulate just for kicks. If he’d listened to his friend then this wouldn’t have happened. He wouldn’t be left feeling like this.

Xander stood in the middle of the apartment. Never had it felt so empty. Not even after Anya left. No. He couldn’t stay here right now. It was too empty. He snatched up his coat and keys and after opening all the drapes, yanked the front door open, slammed it behind him and went to work.

Perhaps if he threw himself into it he could dull these feelings and ride out the disappointment. God knows after a week away he wouldn’t be short of work to drown in.

Xander threw the car in gear and sped off to lose himself in routine.

TBC


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