WARNING: m/m sexual activity. Adult language. Story is generally
SUMMARY: 10 Years after the fall of Sunnydale, Xander has
distanced himself from his past life until a demon forces him to look
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named in this story. I do, however own an unused treadmill. If you
want to sue for that, help yourself.
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Xander and Spike sat silently, Xander's hand painfully clutching
the fingers of the vampire as they listened to the explanation
Giles was laying out for them.
Reluctantly, Spike had promised not to interrupt, scream, curse
or threaten any one while the Watcher outlined the problem.
It was a promise, if made to any one but Xander, that he would
have broken in a heart beat.
Spike cast a sideways glance at the human. It had only been a
few short days since they had gotten back together yet he knew his
pesky soul had formed a real attachment, and where his soul went,
his heart followed.
Xander, the boy, had been funny, loyal, honest, and a real white
knight. Xander, the man. was all those things and more. He had a
maturity that just exuded sexuality and masculinity.
Spike was hooked.
Xander was in shock. He had listened to Giles and through the
confusion of the detailed explanation, he heard only one thing.
"So you're saying all of this is my fault? I called this demon to me
and now it's my fault that it took these men. What if it killed them?
I would be guilty of murder. I'd be a serial killer and have to go to
prison. I can't do prison. In prison they watch you when you go
to the bathroom. My bowels won't move if someone is watching.
I'll back up! Of course being gay I'll probably make friends easier.
No, No, I still can't go."
Immediately, Giles, Willow and Spike tried to reassure him that
this was not his fault, he was not a killer and most prison commissaries
do carry ex-lax. With the group's attention focused on the stressed out
human, Angel slipped across the room and eased down on the sofa
next to Wesley.
"Angel! What the hell do you think............"
Angel held his finger up to his lips.
"Shhhh. Not now Wes. Really! I would think you would be able to
set aside our problems for now. We're here for poor Xander. We
can talk about your apology and your return to LA later."
Wes tried for his most evil glare.
Angel winked in response.
Desperate to calm himself and understand, Xander took a deep breath.
"O.k. let me get this straight. The Nambulist demon is attracted
to my nightmares and now has set himself up like a squatter in my
dreams. You also think he took those men because they made me
happy? So if they aren't dead where are the men he took?"
Giles leaned forward, resting his elbows on his legs.
"I believe he is holding them in a sort of suspended animation in his
dream dimension. I am also certain that when he is destroyed, they
will return to the spot that they disappeared from. Probably amnesiac
but physically fine."
"HA. One problem with your little theory, Giles. If that is the
scenario, why hasn't it taken me?"
Suddenly Spike a look of horror crossed his face as he turned
"Didn't I make you happy? I mean 130 years of experience here.
What the hell did they do that I didn't do? You got off all right.
Several times as a matter of fact. Was it that thing with the tongue?"
"ACK! TMI Spike!"
Willow had slapped her hands over her ears, stopping the unchecked
flow of information. Giles just rolled his eyes. The witch was 30 years
old and still acting like a virgin. Turning back to the men, he asked,
"Have you two been apart right, um, post coitus?"
Xander turned a confused face to the vampire and waited on a translation.
"Watcher is asking if I left you dryin' and coolin' alone. The answer is no.
Never was one to cum and go, unless I'm asked to."
"Yeah, I wanted him to stay. You think that's it?"
Giles rubbed his chin thoughtfully. "I do believe that's the key. The demon
is repulsed by your pleasure at orgasm and if he can reach the object of
your joy while the endorphins are still flowing through your body he can
take form long enough to eliminate the enemy."
Xander scooted closer to the safety of his vampire and prepared
to accept the inevitable.
"Fine. So I have to be the one to do this. Great, gimme a stake or
a chain saw or whatever I need and tell me where to stab."
Giles removed his glasses and began polishing. This was another part of the
discussion that he wished they could skip.
"It's not that simple, Xander. This demon is not substantial in our
dimension. Even in the brief periods where he can be seen, he has
no physical body. He can't be stopped like that."
Replacing his glasses, Giles made sure he had Xander's full attention
before he continued.
"In order to kill this demon and save those men you are going to have
to go to him."
Xander leapt to his feet, Spike at his side.
Giles and Willow both jumped up too, prepared to stop him if he
intended to make a run for it. Angel took advantage of the confusion
of the moment to scoot even closer to Wes. Wes turned an angry
scowl in Angel's direction. Angel checked him with a stern,
"tut, tut, not yet"
Spike wrapped his arms around the human, holding him close. He
could feel Xander's heart pounding so loud and hard against his chest,
Spike feared it may explode. Trying to calm him, Spike whispered
in his ear.
"Xan, Xan, listen to me it's your choice, Love. They can't force you
to do anything. If you want to, we tell them to take a flying leap and
we walk out right now. This is not your fight. Those men are not your
Almost immediately, Xander's breathing began to return to normal.
Spike's pep talk was having exactly the opposite effect that he had hoped
but it was everything Xander needed to hear. Pushing himself away
from the iron grip of his vampire, Xander slowly turned to face his
"You're wrong, Spike, they are my responsibility. They're gone because
of me and I have to be the one to get them back. I admit I'm scared
shitless and I thought I would never have to deal with this crap again
but I'm o.k. Well, not o.k. perse, but I'm in."
Xander turned back to Giles.
"So, how do I do this?"
Ignoring Spike's protests and sputtering, Xander slowly sat back down.
He knew there was no running or hiding. The past had found him
and it was time to face the music.
"Thank you, Xander. We are truly sorry you have........."
"Skip it Giles. Just give me the worst. What do I have to do?"
"Yes, well, Willow has prepared a spell. I'll allow her to explain
how it works and what you will need to do. Willow?"
All faces turned to the witch in expectation. It broke her heart that
their long anticipated reunion was going so badly and now she was about
to send him on a mission that he might not return from. Sometimes
"Well, first I will hypnotize you to begin the dream."
"You mean the nightmares. You want to start my nightmares"
Willow swallowed the lump in her throat.
"Yes, you're right. Then once the nightmare starts I will do
the spell to send you in. When you get there you will have to find
where in the dream he is living and destroy him."
Spike was furious. How dare they come here like this and send
his lover on a deadly mission like he was nobody important? He
chose to ignore the fact that he had come here for the same reason.
"How? What kind of a weapon can he use?"
Willow shook her head.
"No, it isn't like that. He lives and grows on fear and the negative
energy that Xander has cultivated by his repression and avoidance
of his past. He somehow has to be defeated by eliminating that fear."
Xander shook his head.
"I don't get it. I don't understand but, fuck it, just send me in and I'll
try to come up with something."
Spike jumped back to his feet, his eyes bright with hope.
"Send me too. I know he has to go, his monster and all, but send
Willow shook her head.
"I can't. I can't change the dreams. Now, if Xander had been
dreaming about you it would be different, but........."
Spike turned to Xander, waggled his eyebrows and grinned.
In answer, Xander threw his arm around Spike's shoulder
as relief flooded his body.
"Welcome aboard, Buddy, looks like you're in."