Author: Part 1 50ftqueenie… then rngrdead – Ch 2 and beyond
Warnings/Squicks: M/M relations
Rating: NC-17 (or MA 15+ or R?) There is violence and sex and vampires, and boys.
Summary: Xander comes back from the past with a secret.
Note From 50ftqueenie: This can stand on its own as a ficlet, but honestly I know there's more to this story. Eventually I might revisit and do my own version….
The meeting was arranged for two days after Spike finally agreed, and was to be held in the ball room of their home.
Angel was contacted and his arrival pushed forward four days so he too could be present.
A temporary carpet was laid down and assortment of chairs from all over the mansion, plus some hired for the purpose, set up with a clear isle down the middle leading to a large table with three chairs behind a long table draped in a black with a gold embossed Aurelian ‘Arms’ (a huge ‘A’ with Angel’s griffin alongside with a railroad spike in its claws) in clear view at the front. It had not been on display since they were first in residence almost a hundred years previous.
Angel’s arrival was low key this time. Collected from Heathrow around midnight, he was tired and forewent the usual niceties, politely asking Adrian’s PA where he might find William and Xander, before retiring. Most of the information needed for the following day’s meeting had already been emailed, but he did need to speak with his Childe as to any other details that could not be sent securely.
Spike and Xander were poring over some document in the study when Angel was announced by Adrian, who was also consequently ushered in to ensure his full knowledge of what was to conspire the following evening.
Both Master and Consort offered their wrists in succession to the obviously ‘strung out’ Angel, and both were gratefully taken, though only a sip from each. Adrian busied himself while the family reunited by pouring a good ‘snifter’ of brandy for all in elegant glasses and at the appropriate moment took one for himself, then proffered the other three to the Aurelians before quietly taking a seat in the corner of the room.
The matters at hand were primarily focused on how to manage the territory *if* William the Bloody was to become High Master. In addition, Angel’s blessing as Spike’s Grandsire was essential. Any mention of souls or any other impediments were to be avoided, and the fact that Spike’s chip was apparently no longer an issue (or ever had been) also not to be spoken of. It was the Consort Alexander that many would be coming to see, and if challenged, needed to be ready.
At the suggestion of a challenge, Xander simply let his small fangs drop, and before even Spike could realize, had whipped out a hand whittled stake from his coat with his left hand, and had a silver dagger in the other, then said with a wicked grin, “No problems here. Bring it on!”
The strong link between the three felt Xander’s nervous thrill at the thought of a fight and brought their demons to the fore also. Adrian almost inhaled his brandy at the sight, and unwittingly, his own demon emerged in its full glory. He quickly stood and released his tail, which flicked at the end as a large cat’s might prior to a kill.
Angel listened carefully and knew what might transpire on the night, but was also aware of the need for him to be present. William was an ‘old’ Master with a Consort, and despite Spike’s reluctance, Angel knew that having the full line present was critical for all to go well. He was reassured by Xander’s show of confidence and had no doubt that all would be well. He also enjoyed the prospect of ridding the Aurelian vault, post meeting, of contents he would rather not keep.
The influx of funds to his own enterprise in LA had indeed been a blessing, and he thanked the Powers and ‘whoever else’ for the astute business acumen of Spike and put in a plea that the following day was a success before retiring to bed and an exhausted sleep just before dawn.
The meeting began around an hour after sundown. Various Masters, Childer, and their minions (who generally stood to the side of the designated rows of chairs) filed in and sat with nervous intent, some not able to forego their true face. This was to be a momentous event and word had got out that the great Angelus, Grandsire, was also to be present.
Spike, Xander and Angel waited in the study until Adrian indicated all were seated, before making an entrance that had many of the younger Masters gasp. The three were all dressed in formal clothing with long black leather coats, claiming and turning marks clear for all to see. The ripple of power and age of the two vampires had the majority of the Masters in the crowd falling into game-face without intent.
Adrian was in his element, letting his full demon to the fore as he announced the three to the gathered crowd. “Behold the Line of Aurelius, Angelus, his Grandchilde, William the Bloody, and Master William’s Consort, Alexander. You are all here for a single purpose as has been your repeated correspondence over the last month. That is to consolidate the Courts of Southern England under one capable High Master. This will not happen without appropriate petition and pledges of fealty. Does anyone at this meeting object to us proceeding?”
A dark figure draped (rather dramatically) in a hooded black cape and hood stepped from the back row, threw off his shroud and strode confidently down the centre aisle. “I object. *I* am the High Master of this region and directly challenge the line of Aurelius and the upstart William the Bloody, his *ensouled* Grandsire, and (he spat on the floor before continuing) the human Consort.”
Spike grabbed Xander’s arm as he felt his Consort ready for a fight, then remembered Spain. “Only if you want to Pet, he’s young but obviously dangerous.”
Xander gave Spike and then Angel a wicked grin, and said quietly, “Wouldn’t have it any other way, besides, it’s family. Let me take care of this, I know you’ll have my back if it’s needed.”
The cocky young Master vampire who had made the challenge grinned as it was Xander who stood, rounded the table and moved to meet the challenge.
‘High Master’ Simon grinned in triumph, “I see you cannot fight your own battles and would rather let your Consort meet my challenge. How quaint.” He advanced closer with a swagger that indicated his confidence that the Consort would be no match.
Few in the room even saw the well thrown dagger that pierced the approaching vampire’s right thigh, though the pause by the High Master Simon was only momentary as he launched himself at the Consort’s neck, only to be met by a well placed stake drawn from Xander’s belt apparently effortlessly and with deadly accuracy. The end was swift and dusty, and Xander brushed himself off as he returned to his Master’s right hand side behind the table.
The room was deadly silent and many stared in wonder at the *human* who had just bested a most unpopular (yet most thought unbeatable) High Master.
Angel was the first to speak after the dust literally settled, “I take it that there are no other challengers? Minions of the former High Master will be dealt with anon as I see he underestimated all of you and particularly our Aurelian line.
“Most of you here are at least fifty years my Childe’s junior and I congratulate you on establishing your Master status and ably managing your territory, and yes we are well aware of your grievances which will be addressed shortly. However, you also need to realize that swearing fealty to William the Bloody as High Master also means it is to our line and demands you will adhere to any dictates your new High Master invokes. I, as his Grandsire, endorse his position and will be present in Court regarding serious matters as required, though I have my own interests in the Colony of the USA.
“You have elected to petition my Grandchilde to be your High Master, an act I applaud. Now is your opportunity to stand and pledge your commitment to the new leader of the Southern English Court, William the Bloody and his Consort Alexander.”
All who were seated immediately stood and with all present simply announced as one, “All hail the new High Master of Southern England, we pledge our fealty and obedience to the House of Aurelius, William the Bloody, Consort Alexander, and to you Grandsire of the line, Angelus.”
The remainder of the meeting proceeded swiftly. Several of the Masters from various regions petitioned for a number of requests that had apparently been ignored by Spike’s predecessor. Spike was both gracious and attentive, while Adrian’s PA furiously took notes on her laptop for later review.
True to the Crent’ath’s and Aurelian hospitality (and with no small effort on Mavis Smith, her staff, and the slim yet most capable downstairs man, Leon) the Masters and all attending were ushered into a second room following proceedings and plied with all manner of drinks and (as appropriate) aperitifs. Angel, William, Alexander and Adrian all mingled with ease, quietly assessing each Master in the more casual setting and displaying a grace and presence that was not lost on any with whom they encountered. Consequently it was almost four in the morning before the last contingent (the London Master, his fledges and minions) toppled into their waiting limousine and departed.
Spike turned to Angel, with a wink to Xander and Adrian as the front door finally closed. “Well that seemed to go well Grandsire. Got a day to sort the bits and pieces for this Court rot, so you can rest up. We’ll leave for the continent for that visit as promised… And thank you… for coming here early for this, it made all the difference.”
Angel was rather stunned by the acknowledgement of his role and the gratitude from *his* William,
“Thank you also, William, but I think much of the credit should also go to your Consort regards the outcome, and to Adrian Crent’ath for all the arrangements.” Angel then turned to the rather stunned Adrian, “Sir, I speak for the Aurelians present, we are both honored and grateful to you and your household for hosting such a momentous event with such apparent ease. I suspect William will wish to speak to you of extending our lease on the property in perpetuity, and assume you will be able to focus more on your own extensive business interests in our short absence.”
Two days later, as the three Aurelians alighted a *private* jet, apparently the previous property of the High Master of Southern England, and manned by a number of *very happy* ex Childer. They had heard the details and both were excellent pilots. To assure their complete compliance Spike tore open his wrist and gave a little to both vampire pilots. The two hardly had time to recover before the Consort also offered his wrist – opened by his own small fangs.
Angel was also willing to contribute, but Spike stayed his move, indicating the left side broad lounge in the private plane, he and Xander took the opposing slightly longer couch, and all buckled in.
It would only be an hour or so flight, and Adrian had made sure they were met and swiftly transported to a private *six* star hotel in Geneva, ironically one Angelus and William had favored in the day. Xander too recognized the venue though the memories were hazy.
Calls were made immediately they entered their suite: to Adrian with a thank you; to A.I. L.A. to reassure Cordelia that all was well; to the Swiss bank they were to visit in the morning, it had already been arranged, but Spike had a Sire and Consort in tow. Consequently he left a rather curt message with the rather unfortunate overnight receptionist that they would need wake-up calls and transport the following evening.