Warnings: HAU, M/M sex, rape, violence, vague non graphic mentions of het sex, swearing, angst, harsh themes, mild Sub/Dom. OOC, varying chapter lengths, Unbeta'd, Blatant used of movie dialogue.
Rating: NC17 Throughout
Pairing: 100% S/X
Comments: Comment if you want to, though it would be nice to know someone is reading it.
Disclaimer: I own nothing, everything belongs to someone who is not me. I write for fun not profit.
Note1: This is Europe in 1501. Times and people were harsh. Life was cheap and plague rife. This is not a cuddly story and Spike is not a cuddly character. Some might find his treatment of Xander, questionable.
Note 2: My heartfelt thanks go out to my dear friend Bmblbee, for holding my hand through the writing and posting process. *Hugs*
Note 3: This is a plot driven story. What sex there is happens in the natural course of the plot and as part of Spike and Xander's relationship.
Note 4: This is a human/medieval Spike and Xander expect them to behave as such.
Summary: When Prince Rupert is usurped and ousted from his city, he lays siege. He decides to use a group of wandering mercenaries led by the charismatic but dangerous Spike to supplement his army. When he goes back on his word to allow the mercenaries 24 hours free hand to loot the City unopposed, Spike plots revenge. Unfortunately it is Rupert's 18 year old, scholarly son Xander who must pay the price.
Chapter 1/26 + Epilogue
Chapter: 1/26 + Epilogue
Rating NC17 Throughout
Smoke drifted across the grimy, gray and noisy battlefield, cannons boomed and received echoing replies. Smoke drifted thick and acrid, soldiers ran and rode back and fourth through the thick mud, men shouted and drums beat out a steady rhythm calling them into battle. In his tent Prince Rupert heard it all in the dim distance. He paced back and forth as Angelus, grim faced lent on his broadsword. "Sir I don't like it," he growled. "using mercenaries is dangerous, God knows they're good fighters but they're untrustworthy and ill disciplined."
Rupert's head snapped up. "Well if you can't handle them Captain, I can soon replace you!" He fixed Angelus with a sharp look. "Damn it all Angelus, that was my City and they had the nerve to throw me out and I want it back!" He gestured wildly.
Angelus nodded. "I can handle them well enough," he replied. " I just don't trust them. That Spike is devious and clever as well as a good fighter."
"Fuck Spike!" Rupert shouted. "I'm not asking you to like the man Just see to it that he and his men do their fucking jobs!" Calmly Angelus shifted his weight. "I like him fine, I just don't tru..."
"You've said that!" Rupert snapped. "The fact is, like it or not, we need them. You don't have enough soldiers to risk heavy losses in the final assault, send them in first and they can bear the brunt of the casualties," then he added coldly. "there won't be enough of them left to pose any problem."
Angelus nodded, truth was he didn't really care, this was his last battle. Prince Rupert had agreed his retirement and his reward for recapturing the City plus the deed to the small farm meant he could at last settle down, marry Elizabeth and put his years of fighting behind him. "Very well Sir," he nodded. "I'll get things ready for the final assault, but if we wait another few days they'll probably surrender without resistance."
"In another few days there won't be enough of the damn City left to make it worth taking back!" Rupert exclaimed. "The assault goes ahead today, besides the quicker this is over the quicker you get your retirement!" He added.
Angelus nodded and turned and pushed aside the tent flap. "I'll see to it M'Lord."
The mercenary camp was large and surprisingly well ordered. At more than a hundred strong they were a formidable fighting force and along with those of the camp followers their tents made a colorful island in a sea of gray and grime. They'd taken no part in the siege and had sat around for three weeks drinking, whoring, playing cards, cleaning weapons and generally entertaining themselves. Some had grown tired of it, when they weren't fighting they weren't earning and dark mutterings had started about the wisdom or lack of it Spike had shown in throwing in their lot with the aloof Prince Rupert.
Spike stalked through the camp carrying his broadsword, acknowledging greetings with barely a nod. His blond hair slicked back, piercing blue eyes darting left and right, he missed nothing and he knew about the unrest. Truth was the leader's position was tenuous at best, he'd proved that snatching it away from Riley, but for the moment none dared challenge him openly.
Drusilla saw him coming and waltzed forward a tankard of beer in her hand. "Come to me Spike!" She laughed opening her arms. Spike went to her and caught her around the waist and took the tankard from her. "What have you heard?" He muttered. "Warren stirs up unrest," she whispered. " and that Lindsey." Spike nodded and kissed her hard.
Angelus's horse skidded to a halt. "Time to be on your feet m' lads, the assault begins and I want you in the front." Spike turned his arm still around Drusilla, tankard in hand; he squinted up at Angelus. "We're not moving Captain, until your Prince Rupert agrees with us our reward." The mercenaries murmured in agreement.
Angelus rolled his eyes. "Damn you Spike, he wants his City back and the final push is starting." Spike shrugged. Rupert trotted up and reined to a stop. "Captain, what's the delay?" He demanded. " Why aren't these men ready to fight?"
"They won't move until you agree their reward M'Lord."
Rupert edged his horse close to Spike. "That was my City and I want it back! Carry the day for me and I'll give you twenty four hours free rein inside the City, loot the houses of the rich do what you like, unopposed." He promised.
The mercenaries cheered wildly. "Now that's more like it!" Spike's face spread into a broad grin. "Let's go to work boys. Give the man back his City!"
The mercenaries grabbed their weapons and began to form a group. Drusilla cupped Spike's face. "Come back to me." Spike grinned and pressed the tankard into her hand. "I'll think about it."
Spike led the mercenaries through the sea of soldiers. Angelus and Rupert rode along with them, once at the front they paused. The City with it's outer walls reduced to rubble lay ahead of them, the inner walls and huge City gates were largely in tact.
"Father! Father wait! Let me through, make way!" A youth of no more than eighteen appeared, pushing a beer barrel with a handle that attached at either end. He stopped near Spike and looked up at his father. "I've made a war machine!"
"Xander," Rupert said patiently. " that's no more than a damn beer barrel."
"Yes, no," Xander said excitedly. "the barrel is full of gun powder, I've made a mobile bomb. All someone has to do is run with it up to the gates. The fuse is wrapped around the barrel and unrolls behind them, then someone lights the fuse and blows the gates up."
Spike's eyes raked over the boy, he'd seen him about during the course of the three week siege, even spoken to him a few times. He was tall, with the long limbs of a gangly colt and had yet to muscle up, his hair was black and hug slightly waved to his collar, his eyes large and brown. He was almost too pretty to be called handsome and although undoubtedly spoilt, he didn't appear a brat. He had an eager, impulsive air about him, and seemed always to be inventing something or other.
Spike inspected the barrel "It might work at that," he muttered, Xander grinned. "Thank you Spike." Spike continued. "providing you can find some fucking idiot stupid enough to run with it." The mercenaries laughed, Xander's face fell and he scowled.
Rupert pulled out a gold piece. "One gold piece to any man willing to give it a try." Warren jumped forward. "I will." He caught the tossed coin and grasped the handle. Lindsey's hand shot out and grabbed at him. "Warren no!"
Spike knocked Lindsey's arm away. "Let him try," he turned to Warren. "Go ahead, give it a go," he smiled.
Warren began to run toward the City gates pushing the barrel ahead of him, the fuse uncoiled behind and everyone watched his progress. At about half way Spike took a blazing brand from the nearby fire and touched it to the fuse, it hissed, sparked and snaked into life. At first Xander didn't notice, when he did he shouted. "No! Warren! Watch the fuse it's..." The fuse snaked between Warren's legs and the barrel and Warren were blown to smithereens. Spike smirked. "Oops."
The mercenaries chuckled and began to move forward. Xander rounded on Spike. "You lit the fuse far too soon." Spike shrugged and continued to smirk, Xander frowned. "You did it on purpose, you murdered that man." Spike tossed the brand aside and stepped up close to Xander and spoke quietly. "Watch who you're accusing boy," He raised an eyebrow. "it wasn't my damned invention and I didn't make him run with it," he growled. "seems to me like an accident."
Xander stepped back and nodded, Spike grasped his sword and stepped round him. "C'mon boys the quicker we do this, the quicker we get to looting!" With shouts and war cries they ran toward the City gates.