Paring: Spander (of course)
Warnings: Bad language and explicit sexual m/m activity.
Summary: Xander is wrongly convicted of murder and sent
to Riverview Correctional Institution where Spike is a guard.
Disclaimer: I own none of the characters or products named in
this story and sadly, make no profit.
Hard Time is based on a story idea from Ladyvirgo.
Thanks to the amazing Petxnd for the banner.
The next week was the hardest of Xander's life. It was worse than the
days that immediately followed his arrest and it was every bit as nerve
wracking as the quickie hearing that was jokingly called a trial.
It was the unknown.
The isolation from contact and information of the real world. Within
the hour of the riot, a full sweep had been done of the cells and all radios
and televisions had been confiscated to prevent the news of MoMac's
death from inciting further unrest.
Xander had begged they not take his radio, his only tangible proof of
'Uncle Bill's' affection but the C.O. was unmoved. Xander was given
a standard inmate property receipt and the promise that it would be
returned when the institution resumed normal operating procedure.
Xander was frantic. He knew Spike had been injured and he had not been
to work. He tried asking C.O. Lehane but she refused to answer. She
would shove their meal trays at them and slam the cell door. Oz had
advised him to "let it be." but he didn't think he could stand it.
And while the days were tortuously long and empty, the nights were worse.
He was less concerned with the outcome of his incarceration when Jesse
proved he was not dead than he was with Spike's health and well being.
He was frustrated, furious and frantic and again found himself curled up,
crying while Oz cuddled his back and soothed his fears. Xander knew
he had no options.
So, for the next six days, he waited while the lockdown continued.
Wesley's brain was befuddled. Jesse was bug eyed and waving an accusing
finger towards the screen as the newscaster continued to give limited facts
and generalizations about the violence that had exploded within the small,
maximum security facility.
"That's Warren. That convict, the one they say got his head blown the
fuck off, the one they called McDaniels, MoMac, that's Warren!"
"Are you sure? Jesse, you must be absolutely certain."
Jessie spun around and put his hands on his hips angrily.
"I know the fucking creep that beat me up and busted my fucking nose,
The left corner of Wesley's mouth twitched up at the sound of his name
as it rolled so comfortably off Jesse's lips.
The contemplation of the clues made the deduction elementary and Wesley
immediately began throwing his belongings into his suitcase.
"Hurry up and toss your bag into the back of my car. If we take turns
driving, we can make it back to California by tomorrow night."
Jesse let out a whoop of freedom and excitement. The shadow of doom
and fear that had hung over his head for the last few months was now gone.
He could go home. He could do the right thing. Wesley had shown up
and saved his life and now he could pay it ahead and save Xander's.
Maybe someday his good friend could forgive him for his cowardice.
It took all of five minutes to load the car, snacks, bottled water, and
a suitcase of hastily mixed dirty clothes with clean, something Wesley
ordinarily would have laid down and died before doing. It was all
shoveled onto the back seat.
Jumping in, with Wesley behind the wheel, the two prepared to start
out. Then, before turning the key, Wesley turned to his passenger.
"You know, it has just occurred to me that I don't even know your last
name. Not that it's imperative that you tell me. It just strikes me odd
that I don't recall reading it in any of the reports or....."
Wesley blinked then groaned.
"Oh, dear, please don't tell me....."
Jessie laughed out loud and reached over to pat Wesley affectionately
on the shoulder.
"That's right, Wes. You are riding off into the sunset with Jesse James."
Wesley shook his head and laughed. It couldn't have been more perfect
if he had planned it and written the script himself. Starting the car, he
spun the tires, throwing dirt and gravel everywhere as he hit the road
and headed for home.
For the first couple hours, Wesley drove and the two men just talked.
They compared lives, backgrounds, and occupations. They had nothing
in common. A minor point that bothered neither of them.
For the next few hours and into the darkness, Jesse took the wheel
while Wesley prepared the paperwork for their presentation to the
judge and prosecutor. He let Jesse dictate his statement while Wesley
listened and wrote without comment or condemnation.
He marveled at the man's inner strength to beat an addiction that consumed
thousands of lives every day.
Around midnight, Jesse was nodding and Wesley knew he was burnt
out. They again traded places and Wes divided his attention between
the long stretch of desolate highway ahead and the beautiful, wonderful
young man sleeping beside.
By the first hint of the pink light of dawn, Wesley pulled in to a small
diner and the men shared a comfortable breakfast. It felt as though
they had been traveling together for years.
"You want me to drive for a while? You haven't gotten any sleep."
Jesse stepped outside the restaurant pausing to yawn and stretch before
he started toward the drivers side of the car.
"You can drive, but I really don't think I could sleep if I tried. I am
much too wired up. Jesse, um......"
"Nothing. Well, let's be going. At this rate, we should be home in
another 8 hours."
Jesse noted happily that Wes's voice held a tinge of sadness at the coming
end of their road trip. Quickly, before rushing off to jump in the car,
Jesse leaned over and planted a kiss on Wesley's startled lips.
He then sternly snapped his fingers and pointed between his companion
and the car.
"Get in the car, Old Man. We have just spent the last 12 hours talking
about the past and the present. I think now, we will spend the next 8
hours talking about the future."
Wesley happily complied and ten miles outside the Sunnydale city limits,
Wesley and Jesse got a room.