Rating: Adult NC17
Warnings: M/M sexual situations, adult language, reference of violence.
Disclaimer: The Bee owns nothing in this world but her own peace of mind.
I have no claim on any of the characters or products named and make no profit
from my stories.
Summary: AU (Human? Vampire?)
This is the simple tale of a successful psychiatrist with a busy practice.
Dr. Alexander Harris lives and works in the rich and colorful area of the Florida Keys
and everything about his life seems right on track. Then, one day a man comes to
him for help. He is troubled with a history of violence that he hopes therapy can
teach him to control. Clear cut? Maybe not.
As always, thanks to the wonderful Petxnd for the amazing banners and loyal friendship
Alex sat bolt upright in bed. His heart pounded and his body was covered in a light
sheen of foul perspiration. His eyes darted wildly around the dark room searching
for the familiar and the security of the known. Nightstand. Dressers. Flat screen
TV. Suit rack. Home. Home. He was home, in his own bedroom. He whimpered
and gasp in as much air as his lungs would hold.
A nightmare, he told himself. It was just a nightmare. Of course like always, he
couldn't remember the particulars. He couldn't see the monsters that haunted his
dreams. He only knew the terrifying, gut wrenching fear that those monsters left
in their wake.
Squeezing his eyes shut as he tried to slow his respiration to normal, Alex slid back
down and pulled the damp sheet up under his chin. He hadn't had a nightmare in
years. He was sure they had stopped. Thank God for the meds. They were all
that made life endurable in the beginning.
The meds and the therapy. They were his life line. He knew without them
he would have spent the rest of his years locked in that small, padded, white
room in that antiseptic smelling hospital.
But that was not who he was now. It was all in the past. And supposedly, so
were the nightmares.
Immediately, Alex slipped into professional mode. He concentrated on relaxing
ever muscle in his body, he looked at the rationality of the harmlessness of dreams
and he finally diverted his train of thought to something more pleasant as he talked
himself back down.
"O.k. think. What is the best thing that has happened to you lately. Oh, yes,
the dinner. Oh, I know, it was probably foolish to spend time outside the office
with a patient, but there was no harm done. It certainly wasn't a date or a social
outing. It was, um, oh, I know, it was an extension of his session. That's it.
As a new patient, I needed extra time to evaluate him. And, besides, it ended
well enough. There was no harm done."
Alex relaxed and smiled as he pictured, in his mind, the handsome blond standing
and gazing back at him with those beautiful blue eyes just before saying,
Alex's eyes popped open wide and he lurched back up in bed.
Spike hadn't said 'Doc' or 'Alex' he had called him 'Xander.' Something ugly churned
in Alex's lower bowel and he squirmed around to try to alleviate the nausea. What
the hell did that mean? It was a name Alex hadn't heard in years. It was what his
friends and family had called him when he was a young child.
Glancing over at the blinking red numbers, Alex could see that it was 3 AM and
he rubbed his hands over his face roughly telling himself that maybe he was confused.
Maybe he had heard wrong or his memory was just playing tricks on him. Even
if Spike had called him that, what did it mean? Nothing. It was a fairly common
nick name for Alexander. Wasn't it? It had nothing to do with him personally
and it held no relationship to the return of the nightmares.
It was all a series of odd, unrelated happenings. Nothing more. Nothing less.
Reason and rationality. They were the tools of Alex's trade and they were the
ropes that he clung to in times of desperation. His professional training had taught
him that there was solid reality in all situations and if you understood the clarity,
there was no problem that could not be resolved.
He was beginning to feel better and he again slipped down between the rich,
luxuriously smooth sheets and he laid his head back down on his pillow, murmuring.
"I'm all right. I'm all right. Everything is all right."
The quiet whispers of his own voice in the dark soothed him and before long,
Alex again dozed off, this time into a peaceful, untroubled sleep.
When he woke in the morning, the night before was just a distant memory.
He rose, jumped from bed, did his morning push ups, took his meds and happily
traipsed off toward the shower. He had a very regimented routine that gave him
comfort in it's regularity and reliability. He knew what came next.
Everything was done in the same order. No deviation. No change. It was
reassuring. It was what Alex needed.
With his morning paper tucked under his arm and a song in his heart, Alex unlocked
his office door. He laid out his files for the day and checked his calendar. He
welcomed Iris 30 minutes later and their work day began.
He efficiently organized his desk, checking his list of the day's appointments and
returned a number of phone calls that required his attention. He dusted off the
picture of the lovely smiling blond, sometimes holding a brief conversation with her.
"Morning Honey. You sleep good last night? No, actually I didn't. I had another
one of those damn dreams. What? No, I can't remember what it was about.
Yeah, if it continues, I'll call Everett and make an appointment to go see him."
Her response was always the same. She would beam her smiling white teeth,
giving him her support and loving approval of whatever he said or did. With all
that done, Alex would settle in with a fresh cup of coffee and wait for the first
patient of the day to begin the parade that would take him to quitting time.
Everything fell into place. He saw the woman with the germ phobia. He listened
as the bank president with the mother obsession cried about his feeling of
abandonment and he sat patiently as the young girl tried to understand what led
to her kleptomania.
It was a normal week. The days came and the days went. He absorbed himself
in his work and he tucked aside the slight sadness in the fact that he went home
each night to an empty apartment. It was a condition that he knew was the only
Before he realized it, it was Tuesday. It was the day of the week that the office
opened at noon and stayed open late. It was the day that he had wakened up
cheerful and, for a moment didn't realize why. When he scanned the roster
and saw the last name of 'William Pratt' Xander's stomach fluttered and his
heart sailed high.
It was an odd reaction that he had no explanation for. True enough, the man
was pleasant, attractive, and their initial session had gone well, but what stuck
out in his mind most was the dinner after. The dinner that was probably
inadvisable. Still, when he thought back over their conversation, Alex found no
fault and consequently, no foul.
For the majority of the day, he often found his mind drifting. More than once
he realized his patient had stopped talking and Alex knew he had no idea what
was being discussed. When that happened, he resorted to the old tried and true
response of tapping his pen on his chin and asking,
"And how do you feel about that?"
It never failed. Immediately, the patient launched into a lengthy explanation
of the why and how and it gave the doctor a chance to catch up, jot down
some notes and look like he was on the ball.
By 8 PM the daylight outside his windows had disappeared, replaced by the
moon, the stars and the skyline of twinkling offices in the buildings around him.
He felt his skin tingle in anticipation and he checked the clock on the wall for the
tenth time. Just when he was beginning to think his patient was a no show, the
"Doctor, Mr. Pratt is here. May I show him in?"
It was all Alex could do not to giggle like a school girl. It was an alarming reaction
that made him more than slightly concerned. He shook his head and tried to
understand the root of the bizarre reaction. He had no explanation. When he
felt his professional persona was solidly back in place, he responded.
"Yes, thank you Iris. Then you may go."
Within seconds, the door opened and his matronly receptionist stepped aside as
the blond, blue eyed man stepped in. He was dressed identically to the way he
was last week and Alex wondered if that was a compulsion they should discuss.
"Thanks, Iris. I'll see you in the morning. Mr. Pratt, Spike, please come in
and have a seat."
Spike sauntered in confidently, as though he had been there a million times
and he dropped down into the chair.
"Evening, Doc. How's it hanging?"