bmblbee (bmblbee) wrote in bloodclaim,

Hope House

Author: BmblBee
Paring: Primarily S/X with a very minor S/OCs.
Rating: NC17 Adult Reading
Disclaimer: The Bee has no claim on any of the characters or
products named in this story and receives no profit from anything.
Warnings: Adult language, Prostitution, Violence, strong sexual
content. NOTE: All the boys working in Hope House are over
the age of 18. The Bee does not do underage!

Summary: Long after the final battle of Sunnydale, Xander is
alone, his life in shambles. Is there anywhere he can go and anyone
who can give him hope? There just might be.

As always, kudos to Petxnd for the wonderful banner.

The next time Xander awoke, he was better prepared. He was careful not
to make any sudden moves that would acerbate his injuries and cause him
unnecessary pain.

He eased his eyes open and noted that the room was still dimly lit and,
judging from the condition of the swelling of his face, he hadn't been asleep
very long. That's when he noticed one big change.

The room was no longer quiet. Without moving his head, Xander strained
to interpret the odd sound from the far side of the small room.
If he didn't know better, he would swear it was......giggling?

Curiosity overroad caution and Xander turned to look. There, sitting in
the spot that had at one time contained a large matronly nurse, now held
the small frame of a boy whose face was blocked by the open colorful
cover of an Archie and Veronica comic book.

The reader snorted, snuffled and snickered again.

Xander swallowed, checking his throat for usability, then spoke, his voice
barely above a whisper.

"That funny?"

Immediately, the comic fell to the boy's lap and Xander was looking into the
very young, freckled face of a blond boy whose age Xander guessed at about
14. Instantly the memory of Andrew flashed into his mind and a wave of
melancholy washed over him. He whimpered, a sound misinterpreted as
a sign of pain.

Jumping up, the boy rushed to the side of his bed.
"Hey, you're awake. How you feel? No. Don't answer that. I'll bet you feel
like shit. You look like shit. Well, I don't mean that in an ugly way, I just mean
that you look like you been run over by a truck. You wasn't run over by a
truck was you?"

Xander just blinked. He was not about to discuss the particulars of his situation
with this child.
"What hospital am I in? How did I get here? Who are you?"

Beanie grabbed the chair and pulled it to the side of the bed. He sat then squiggled
forward till he sat on the very edge.

"I'm Beanie and this ain't no hospital. This is Hope House. This is a place for boys
that lives on the street. I used to but now I live here. The, um, guy that runs this
place gives us a bed to sleep in, food to eat and he makes sure that no one else
beats us."

Xander stared into the face that, close up, looked much older than he had originally

"No one else?"
"You said no one else, like the guy that runs this place beats you."

Beanie threw his head back and barked out a laugh.
"So, anyway, one of the guys found you and they brought you here."

Xander was having trouble mentally wading through the confusion.
"I saw a nurse sitting there last night and I have tubes in my hand and my....."

Beanie reached out and gently ran his fingers sympathetically over Xander's
wrist just above the intravenous needle.

"That was Mrs. Gessel and you are in the clinic. She was a nurse years ago
but now she is the housekeeper here, which is great cause she cooks
for us but when we get hurt, she patches us up real good."

Xander frowned.
"Does that happen a lot? You getting hurt?"

Beanie could feel that this conversation was beginning to wander into dangerous
territory and he clearly remembered the Master's warnings. Leaping to his feet,
Beanie looked over at the closed door.

"I better go get Mrs. Gessel She said to tell her the minute you woke up."

Xander's arm came up as the boy retreated.
"Wait. I need to know...... I.... Can't you just sit and talk to me?"

Beanie stopped in the doorway and looked back with a sad expression on his face.
"If I can, I'll come and see you later. I promise I'll try."
And he was gone.

Xander laid alone, waiting to see what would happen next. Something about this
whole set up seemed concerning and Xander struggled to clear his mind and
think. Within minutes, he could hear muffled voices just outside the closed door.

Indiscernible, undefined words that seemed to come from three separate people.
One was Beanie. One was a woman, probably the nurse/housekeeper,
Mrs Gessel. The other one was lower. It seemed to be male but it was hard
to tell. It whispered. Short, one or two word sentences.

Immediately, the door opened and in she stepped, closing it quickly behind her
and she flipped a switch that flooded the room with a shockingly bright light. Xander
flinched and blinked.

"Well, don't you look better? We were worried about you when they brought
you in yesterday."

Xander assessed her and she came up points to the positive so he marginally
relaxed as she went about the task of checking his head and ribs. He could
tell by the professional efficiency of her touch that Beanie was right. She had
been a nurse. He did wonder, though about the odd hue to her skin.

"How am I?'

Mrs. Gessel threw the blanket back over his body and looked him in the eye.
"Well, when you first came in, you had a twitching of your pupils that indicated
a slight concussion which now seems much improved. You had a gash on your head
that we closed and a broken nose. You had three broken ribs that we taped and....."

Xander had to know the worst.
"And my dick?"

Mrs. Gessel frowned in confusion.
"Your...? Oh, there is nothing wrong with your penis. You have badly bruised
kidneys and we catheterized you to keep you in bed and prevent any straining.
In a few days when we are certain there is no more blood in the urine, the catheter
will be removed."

Despite the reassurance that his dick was not about to fall off, Xander's alarm
bells were jangling like mad and he had a sinking feeling there was more to
his being here than just the benevolence of an unknown benefactor.

"Why was I brought here? Shouldn't I be in a real hospital? Who is going
to pay for all this cause I gotta tell you up front, I don't got any money.
Beanie said this place was Hope House. What the hell is that and how
come I never heard of it?"

Judy Gessel's manner cooled considerably and she adopted an attitude of
professional disconnection.

"You were not taken to a hospital for the reason you just mentioned. You have
no money. You were very lucky to be found and brought here. Hope House is
a privately owned and funded shelter that provides housing and meals for
homeless young men. For now, that is all you need to know. Now, I
think you need to get some sleep and we can talk later."

Despite his vigorous protests, Mrs. Gessel reached for the syringe on the
table and shot something into Xander's IV. The second it hit his veins it felt
cold, then warm, then........nothing.

Xander dozed off.
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