Rating: Adult for language and sexual content
Disclaimer: The Bee owns none of the characters or products named
in this story, however the plot and words are her own.
Warning: Violence (nongraphic) and strong M/M sexual content.
Summary: OCD Spike is back! It has been a year since Xander and
Spike met in Rough Diamond and they have been living and working
together ever since. As an anniversary present, Xander takes a reluctant
Spike on a gay ocean cruise and everything, including murder, goes with
Appreciation to: Petxnd for her wonderful banner and patient preread
and to Silk_ Labyrinth for her beta. Any remaining boo-boos are the
result of the Bee's stubbornness.
Thanks to Petxnd for the wonderful banner and the faithful friendship.
The day was travel brochure perfect. The sun was blazing high and hot in the
gloriously blue tropical sky, smiling with it's golden eye down on the small section
of the planet that appeared conflict free. The everpresent warm breeze blew a
taste of salt and sea through air to settle on the tongue and cause a slight sting in
The small island of Cococay was surrounded by white, pristine sandy beaches
and tall palm trees laden with coconuts and ferns. The small hump of land seemed
to rise from the depths of the ocean in an explosion of colorful tents, flowering
plants and umbrellas that defined the landscape.
By early afternoon, the entire horizon was filled with the huge white ship that had
eased into port. Within the hour, the gangplank was dropped into place and the
small Caribbean island was deluged with a tsunami sized wave of gay men.
They came in all shapes, sizes and varying degrees of flamboyancy. They spanned
the full range from painted toenails and flowered tube tops from the pre-teen miss
department to masculine muscle shirts and army boots.
Some squealed with delight, waving their arms and gushing over the quaint, dark-
skinned natives and some appeared sullen and above the influence of such obvious
commercialism. But they all had one thing in common. One joining, common
trait that caused the residents of this small island to give thanks to the Sun God
each time this particular cruise boat arrived.
Gay men spent money.
Lots and lots of money. They bought trinkets and t-shirts. They gobbled the
local cuisine and they happily tossed coins to the children who followed them on
the streets. They sat cheerfully for an hour or more while the old, nimble fingers
of the island woman wove braids into their hair and they happily handed over
cash to anyone who would stop and take their picture while doing any of the
Gay men brought the party with them and it didn't matter to any of the natives
who these men fucked because when they arrived, every resident of Cococay
was left sated and happy when the ship sailed on.
Standing off to the side on the ship's deck, Xander continued to slather the
SPF #50 on every inch of Spike's exposed skin. He had agreed with Spike that
it was best if they held back until the initial crush of descending passengers had
gone to prevent the phobic man from being mauled and manhandled by faceless
As soon as the stream slowed to a trickle, Xander grabbed his partner's hand
and he tugged him forward. Within minutes they stood on the wooden planks
of a designated walkway that bridged the grainy beach to a worn narrow path.
Bordered on both sides by exotic floral plants, the path led through the lush
green forest to the village and the hub of the island's activity.
"Jesus, Spike, this is paradise! It's so beautiful and smell! Everything smells
like flowers and greenery. Oh, God! We should move here. We could build
a grass hut and sleep on the beach. We could fuck in the water and never
Spike snorted. Sometimes Xander could say the most absurd, outrageous things
he had ever heard. Still, after their long talk, Spike had been reminded of his
vow of yesterday and he promised to try and be a bit more agreeable. With that
pledge in mind, he would not point out the obvious stupidity of Xander's suggestion.
Instead, he tugged up the corners of his mouth in a strained smile.
"Gee. Yes. That would be a bloody brilliant idea. I could be Robinson Caruso
and you could be my man Friday."
Xander hooted at the sad try at humor and excitement. He didn't care. He was
on the vacation of a lifetime with the man he loved and nothing could spoil that.
And despite all of Spike's concerns and complaints, Xander knew his lover well
enough to know that Spike was having a good time too.
As much as he was capable of.
So, hand in hand they blended in with the swell of men who were already absorbed
into the culture and lifestyle of the carefree islanders. They watched a trio of
passengers who shimmied and hopped to the music of the steel drums and they
lingered to admire the tall cages that held the parrots and cockatoo.
Spike stood back and cringed slightly when one of the birds shrieked and flapped
its magnificent wings sending small feathers flying and floating through the air.
Xander reached out a hand, capturing one and dropping it in his pocket. It would
be like taking a small piece of paradise home with them.
Moving on, Xander worried that his face may break from the smile that never
flagged. A year ago, working the dirty streets and alleys, he lived and in the dark
shadows of hopelessness. Now, here he was, in the sun. He was happy. He was
successful and complete. Cococay was a few thousand miles away geographically
but it was a world from where he had been.
Before he had the chance to again wax poetically, his stomach growled reminding
him of what was really important.
"Hey, I'm hungry as fuck. There's a small hut cafe over there. Let's go see what
the islanders eat."
Spike blinked at the crazy suggestion. He could see the women slapping flat
doughy handfuls of grain into patties that they tossed on an oven before filling
with unknown substances of possibly meat and a gooey green sauce. There
was not a single plastic glove in sight.
"Ack! Um..errr..well...I'm really not...."
"No sweat, sweety. I brought two of your protein bars and we can get you a
sealed bottle of water. It isn't a lot but it is a snack till we get back on the ship
and have a big dinner. Will that work for you?"
"I love you, Xan."
"I know, baby. I love you too."
The shack was round and open with a grass, thatched roof. It had a ledge that
circled the entire hut with stools pulled up tightly and just enough room to squeeze
in while you waited your turn for the heavenly smelling mysterious food that the
two chubby native women were serving.
Grabbing the last two seats, Xander shoved Spike down and he waved his
hand ordering just one plate. He had it brought with a water and a tall glass
of fruity alcohol with an umbrella jammed into a cherry.
As they ate, Xander chatted with the other passengers from the ship. Some
familiar and some that had gone unnoticed. Chad, an attractive young man
sitting on his right reached up and ran his fingers through Xander's thick,
"Are you going to get braided? You really should. Just one or two on the side.
It would look sexy as hell with your earring. Besides, it just feels soooo erotic
and sensual to sit there and have them tug and pull on your hair."
Xander ignored the throat clearing and knee swatting that was coming from his left
and he tipped his head thoughtfully.
"I don't know. If I don't here, we stop at St. Barts tomorrow, I might do it then."
Finally Spike could stand it no longer and he leaned forward to get a good look
at the interloper and make it clear that Xander and his hair were spoken for.
"We will discuss it tonight and decide. We decide everything together."
Chad and Xander laughed at the unnecessary possessiveness but to sooth the
prospective hurt feelings, Xander leaned over and placed a kiss on his lover's
lips. Spike wiggled happily on his stool and went back to his protein bar while
Xander continued to talk to the other man about the weather and the island.
Uninterested in their conversation, Spike's attention wandered to the other
activities playing out around them when something caught his attention. Loitering
off to the side by himself, stood Teddy. The young man was scowling and
scuffing the toe of his sandal in the sand. He wore a plain grey t-shirt and his
right forearm was swathed in a wide gauze bandage.
Teddy had somehow managed to aquire a hell of an injury.