Chapter 8: Trust

                When Xander arrived home, he walked in the door and stopped dead,  staring  in surprise at the scene - Spike slumped on the couch, half asleep, with Oz curled next to him, their hands entwined on Spike's thigh.  Xander shut the door quietly and Spike's eyes were suddenly open, watching him.  He gently loosened Oz's grip on his hand and eased off the couch, and they both walked quietly to the kitchen.  Xander had a plastic bag of Oz's shredded clothes, wallet, and keys that, amazingly, Tara had recovered from the college.  He put it on the kitchen counter.

                "Everything go alright at the Watcher's, pet?"  Spike asked, and Xander nodded, staring at the table. 

                "Yeah - well, sorta.  Willow was pretty upset that Oz didn't want to see her, but I told her he was in bad shape and just didn't want her to worry.  Told her he was just gonna sleep, anyway, and it would be better if everybody was a bit more calm when he finally saw them."   Xander walked up to the table and looked down at the note, touching it with his fingers.  "Buffy backed me up, said he needed to rest and not answer a bunch of questions...  That secret project the mad Professor was working on has killed some people.  I think she finally gets it that the Initiative is bad news."

                "Took long enough," Spike muttered, and put his arm around Xander's waist.   He leaned there, his chin on Xander's shoulder as Xander picked up the note and looked at it.  *He was here.  Back tomorrow... thank god...  Jack, I hope this works*   

                "What is he, Xander?" Spike asked, and Xander turned to face him, putting his own arms around Spike's waist, groin to groin but leaning back a little.  Spike's eyes were narrowed, speculating, and Xander raised his eyebrows in question.

                "What do you mean?"

                "He's not human, pet.   I could...feel him, when I got here.  It - he..."   Spike cocked his head a little, thinking, eyes never leaving Xander's face.  

                "What, Spike?"

                "It was - uncomfortable.  Whatever he is, he's strong.  What are you doing messin' about with somethin' like that, love?"

                "He owes me, remember?  I'm calling in the debt."  Xander leaned closer and kissed Spike lightly, lips and cheeks, edge of his jaw, side of his throat.  He nibbled on the tiny marks that hadn't quite faded from his earlier bite, and Spike shivered, shutting his eyes.   Xander let his hands wander up the front of the flannel shirt, undoing one button, then the next, exposing the smooth planes of Spike's chest.

                "Think you can distract me with sex?" Spike murmured, and Xander laughed softly, breathily, ghosting more kisses over Spike's collarbones, the other side of his neck.

                "Oh yeah.  Is it working?"

                "Workin' a treat, love," Spike whispered, pressing his erection tight into Xander, and Xander laughed again.  Spike slid his arms up Xander's back and gently took his head in his hands, kissing him slowly, with utmost concentration.  Xander sighed into the kiss, reveling in it, loving the taste and scent and feel of the vampire, content to just stand there all night, kissing him, feeling him, holding him *Safe, he's safe, he's here, mine, oh...please don't leave me, love, please don't...* 

                "Xanderrr," Spike whispered, breaking away, nuzzling into his hair,  "Want you..."   He grazed Xander's jaw, his throat, with blunt teeth and Xander shuddered, the sensation going straight to his groin, a tingle like electricity all over.

                "Have me...whatever you want...yours..." Xander mumbled, and Spike did a slow, sensual slide down Xander's body, his hands working at the belt, the button and zip of the Army pants, opening them and pulling them down.  His cool cheek rubbed over Xander's hip, his lips nibbling, tongue darting out to flicker over heated skin.  Xander gasped softly, swaying, looking down at Spike.   He stumbled a little as Spike pushed him back a step, into a kitchen chair.  He sank down and Spike slid his hands around Xander's waist, rubbing up his back and then down again, to settle on his hips.  His mouth glided over Xander's belly and then *finally, ohhh...*  it was on Xander's cock, cool and wet, sliding down, licking, sucking, and Xander couldn't stop his hands from going out to Spike's hair.  He curled his fingers in it, only holding, caressing.  The vampire took the head of Xander's cock into his mouth, sucking gently,  and Xander tried hard not to thrust up into him, afraid of hurting him.  Spike went lower, further, and Xander could only writhe under him, lost in the pressure and the slick glide, in the fingers that stroked his hips and thighs and then slid down, to caress his balls.  Spike pulled away and bent to lick there too, mouthing  them, and Xander moaned softly.  Then the cool mouth was back on his cock and taking him in, flicker of tongue and hard suction, fingers sliding between his legs to stroke and tease his perineum, slipping lower and just breaching the muscle with slippery fingertips.  Xander gasped, transferring his grip to the chair-seat, clutching it tightly as Spike went faster, harder, with both fingers and mouth until Xander was arching up into him, trembling in orgasm and feeling Spike swallow and swallow again. 

                Xander slumped back in the chair, eyes shut, panting, and he felt Spike's lips kissing his belly and then chest, pushing the shirt up.  Then Spike's mouth was on his and Xander kissed him hungrily, tasting himself.  Suddenly Spike was gone, and Xander opened his eyes, looking dazedly around.   A noise from the bedroom and the vampire was back.

                "Stand up, pet," Spike whispered, and Xander struggled upright, the vampire helping, then turning him, putting his hands back on the chair seat.  Spike pushed Xander's pants lower, past his knees.

                "Still want you..." Spike whispered in his ear, and he felt the vampire's fingers again, slick with lube, opening him, and Xander spread his legs as far as they would go in the confines of the camo pants.  

                "Want you to come with me, this time," Spike murmured, and Xander pushed back against the twisting, petting fingers, groaning aloud as they found their mark and rubbed there.   He couldn't help but push back, thrusting as hard as he could, and he gasped when Spike abruptly withdrew.  A moment later the cool, blunt head of his cock was pushing there, insisting, and Xander arched into the body behind him, half hard, panting. 

                Spike moved into him so slowly; he held Xander's hips in a tight grip and moved inch by inch. 

                "Please move, Spike, please - want you in me..."

                "Hmmmm..."  Spike leaned over his back, one hand coming around to lazily stroke Xander's cock, fondle his balls.  The other rubbed over his chest, pinching his nipples, scratching sharp nails down his ribs.  Xander pushed back, hard, and Spike was in him.  They both froze for a long moment, and then Spike was thrusting into him, building speed, changing the angle until Xander made a wordless sound of pure pleasure.  Spike put both hands under Xander's shoulders and pulled him upright, holding him there.

                "Shush, love, have to be quiet - don't want to wake the wolfling..."  He kissed and nibbled Xander's neck, and Xander shivered as the vampire found his mark and trailed blunt teeth over it.

                "Do it, Spike - want to feel that.  Feels I'm in you, when you do that...feels so

good..."  Spike let one hand trail down Xander's body to his cock and began to stroke him in time with the thrusts into his body.  Xander felt him change and he tipped his head to the side, begging silently, his hands going behind to grasp at Spike's hips, urging him on.  Spike thrust harder, making his own moaning cries now, and Xander used his muscles to tighten down on Spike's cock, pushing back, wanting as much as Spike could give him.  Spike's left arm lifted suddenly, disappearing, and then he was bringing it around again in front and Xander saw that he'd torn his own wrist.  The blood trailed there, gleaming scarlet, and Xander hesitated for only a moment, and then reached to press the wound to his mouth.  The blood was... * sparks, like..*  Xander almost giggled, licking the heady stuff.  *Like Pop Rocks.  Ooohh...*  Spike hissed in pleasure and suddenly his fangs were sinking into Xander's flesh, sending out a wave of electric frission, blossoming from where the fangs were sheathed in him and racing over his body, ending where Spike's cock was sheathed.   Xander arched, rigid and trembling, a knot of fire tightening in his cock and balls and ass, sending him into orgasm.  Spike's wrist was drawn away, his hand curling around Xander's hip, the other stroking him fiercely, the rhythm of Spike's hips going ragged now as his body stuttered into orgasm as well.  With a low moan Spike pulled away from Xander's neck, licking the blood there and gasping,  his arms tight around Xander.  Xander leaned his head back on Spike's shoulder and just breathed,  his heart pounding fit to burst.  *Oh  that feels so we're the same person...same orgasm...never wanted anyone this much...never want anyone else...*   

                "Love you," he whispered, and Spike's arms tightened around him, and he felt cool lips on his jaw and then cheek, soft kisses at his temple.

                "Love you too. sure..."

                "Sure of what, Spike?"  Spike tried to move and Xander crossed his arms over Spike's arms, holding him there.

                "Sure that...I'm what you want, pet? "

                "Mmmm.  I am.  Never been so sure.  Thought about you for so long - and this is better then I ever thought it would be.  So much better...  I was so sure you'd never..."  Xander stopped, and Spike kissed his temple again, hugging harder for a brief moment.

                "Sure I'd never what, love?"

                "Never feel anything for me.  Why should you?  You had Drusilla...and I'm human - can't compare to a vampire..."  Spike finally let go, turning Xander in his arms.  Xander looked into eyes that were wide and deepest sea-blue in a face so solemn and intense that he felt a clench of fear in his gut.

                 *I can be second to her.  I can.  Don't care...* 

                *Don't want that - want ALL of him...*   The soldier, fierce and anxious, no intention of being second.  The hyena was only a wordless hum of pleasure, too lost in the presence of  the vampire to notice or care about the sudden tension.

                "You can't compare, love.  That's one of the reasons I want you so much.  You're so different...   Never spent this much time with a human, not since I was turned."  Spike pushed his fingers back through Xander's hair, tugging gently, then leaned in and rested, forehead to forehead, his hands burrowing under Xander's shirt, rubbing his back in slow circles.   "I don't want a vampire - I want you.  Dru... she's gone.  She told me what for, and pushed me away...  I loved her so bloody much, once upon a time...but I just don't anymore.  She cut my heart - slashed it to bloody pieces.    And was just habit there at the end, love.  Just habit.  Hundred years I gave her, more, and she took it all...and I just want..."  Spike stopped and put his face down into Xander's neck, and breathed a moment there, deeply.  His hands were shaking on Xander's back, and Xander pulled him close, stroking the vampire's back under the flannel shirt he'd never taken off.

                "Just want you.   You make me real too, love - make me know I'm still here.  Make me feel..."  Spike lifted his head, looking into Xander's eyes, and Xander saw the truth there.  He leaned in to kiss Spike, slow and easy and thorough,  *cloves and cream, whiskey and spice and...blood.  So...good...*

                "Love you.  Never really thought I'd say that and mean it so...damn...much,"  Xander whispered.  Spike smiled at him, nuzzling his cheek, his fingers coming back up to comb through Xander's hair.

                "Glad you do, pet.  Love you too..."  Spike kissed him again, little fleeting kisses over cheek and forehead, nose and chin - caught Xander's lower lip between his teeth and nibbled for a minute, then pulled away, grinning.

                "Come wash my hair?"  Xander laughed aloud, quickly shushing himself.

                "You  do have an obsessive bathing fetish.  But..."  Xander looked down at themselves, pants around ankles and smears of lube and  - other things - on their bodies and clothes.

                "But we do need a wash."  He bent his knees a little and snagged the sweatpants Spike was wearing, pulling them up, and Spike did the same for him, leaving the camo pants gaping open, belt jingling.  As they walked to the bathroom, Xander had to ask.

                "Why are you wearing my clothes, Spike?"

                "Wanted something comfy.  They smell like you."  Spike grinned at Xander's look of surprise, then laughed as a huge smile spread over Xander's face.

                "You got a crush on me, Spike!"  Xander teased, and Spike growled. 

                "The evil undead do not get crushes, pet.  We're much too dignified for that."

                "Oh right.  Forgot.  Dignity."  Xander reached over and yanked the sweatpants down, giggling.  Spike made a point of very carefully shutting the bathroom door before pouncing.




                After they showered, Xander went about cleaning up the kitchen while Spike watched him.  The vampire smoked one cigarette after another until Xander finally opened the kitchen door and made shooing motions with his hand.

                "What?" Spike asked, and Xander made a face at him. 

                "You're going to choke me with those things.  Until the marathon chain-smoking session is over, go outside.  Why are you smoking so much, anyway?"  Spike looked at the cigarette he was holding and frowned, then crushed it out in the overflowing ashtray.

                "Sorry, mate.  Didn't think about it.  Just - this Jack..."

                "That's what you're worried about?" *Damnit.  Didn't want to talk about this.  Wanted to talk to Jack first...  Ok, calm...*   Xander took the ashtray and dumped it, then tossed it back to Spike, who sat on the kitchen table, bare feet in a chair, his black jeans half undone.  Spike weighed the ashtray in his hands, then looked up at Xander, scowling.

                "Do you know what he is, really?  He wasn't even in the soddin' house and I felt...  He's so strong, love.  Can you trust him?  What do you want him for?"  Xander sighed, pulling the plug on the kitchen sink, watching the dirty water drain out, wringing out the dishcloth.  He wiped his hands on a towel and turned around, leaning on the sink, arms crossed.

                "He owes me - "

                "You said that, pet.  What are you going to get him to pay?"  Spike put the ashtray aside and sat there looking at Xander  as if waiting for him to sprout an extra head.  His eyes were narrowed and he was very, very still.  *Like a cat about to pounce.  Well fuck.  Here we go*   Xander uncrossed his arms and walked over to Spike, nudging one leg aside and getting between the vampire's thighs.  He rested his hands on Spike's hips and sighed, looking up finally to meet the violet-blue gaze.

                "I don't  want to tell you..."  Spike started to speak and Xander put a hand up, stilling him.  "But I will, because...I didn't realize you would worry so much.   I'm going to...   I'm going to ask him if he can do - something - about the chip."  Spike's eyes went wide, and Xander felt Spike's muscles go rigid under his fingers.  Spike didn't move - didn't say anything, and Xander couldn't stop the babble that welled up out of him.

                "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, Spike, I didn't want to tell you, I don't know if he can do anything at all, he might just tell me to forget it, but you're right, he's powerful, I felt it, and it just seemed like...   He's the only - it's the only solution I can come up with.  The Initiative seems to be imploding, who knows if they'll even be around in a few months, and they're the only other people who know..."

                ""  Spike lay one cool finger on Xander's lips, shushing him, and Xander looked down at where his hands were clenching on Spike's hips.  He eased up, rubbing gently.

                "What..." Spike stopped, looking away, then back at Xander.  "What if he can.  I'll be free of this bloody chip - free to kill.  And I will, love.  You know I will.  Startin' with those soldier bastards and any doctor I can get my hands on...   Every one of them..."  Spike's eyes were lambent brass now, glowing in the candle-light, and Xander rubbed his hands on Spike's thighs.
                "I know, Spike.  I trust you."

                "Do you really?  Do you really, pet?"  Spike let the demon emerge, baring his fangs, hissing through them, his hands on Xander's biceps, clenching hard.

                "This is me, Xander - whatever you see when you look at me with that mojo - this is me...and I earned my name, love, and I enjoyed earning it.  And nothing stops me, and nobody owns me, and I'll snap the Slayer's neck for her, love.  On the day I get lucky, she gets dead, love - do you  really understand, love, who I am, what I am, what I'll do?"  Spike's voice had sunk to a sibilant growl, all the more unnerving for being so quiet.

                Xander could feel his heart pounding - could feel fear and anger and desperation all roiling in his gut - knew that Spike could feel it, sense it;  the demon's nostrils flared, and a groaning, snarling noise rumbled out of his chest.  Xander felt the hairs rise on the back of his neck - felt his breath shortening to pants.

                 *Harris, you've fucked yourself,  TOLD you - *  

                *SHUT. UP.  You're not helping.  Gotta calm down - gotta calm him down...what...* 

                *Pack*  the hyena muttered, whining, *Pack*   Xander's eyes widened.  He knew what the hyena wanted him to do - for the second time, the hyena was urging something Xander knew was dangerous.   But the hyena knew that maybe, this was all he could do.  To calm Spike down.  To show him...he trusted him.  *God I hope this works...*  Xander closed his eyes and tipped his head back and to the side, exposing his throat, the edges of Spike's earlier bite showing above the collar of his t-shirt.  And waited there, shivering, for what Spike would do.  He felt the vampire's hands dig hard into his arms - heard the snarl ratchet up into a full-fledged growl; louder, deeper, infinitely more terrifying.  Spike jerked Xander close, crushing the mortal to his chest, his mouth going down hard on Xander's throat, on his mark, one hand shredding the t-shirt away from it in a single jerk.  The fangs bit, savage and hard, and Xander felt the blood flow out in a shivery rush.   Xander gasped, writhing helplessly.  Even this - this brutal taking, sent heat through him, want, desire.  His hands scrabbled at Spike's back, trying to pull him closer, and abruptly Spike wrenched himself away, pushing Xander back, launching himself off the table and around the room in an inarticulate fury.  He roared, and Xander heard a yelp and a thud from the living room.  *Oz, fuck... don't come in here...*

                "Spike!" Xander yelled, and Spike rounded on him, snarling, then stopped and backed away.  He came up hard against the wall by the bedroom door and slid down into a crouch, head in hands.  Xander watched him for a moment, then he walked slowly over to him, crouching down as well, clenching his hands together in an effort not to reach out and touch the vampire.  He just hovered there, and finally Spike looked up, human again, the expression on his face utterly furious.

                "That was the stupidest bloody thing I've ever seen you do." he grated out, and Xander ducked his head, unable to keep a smile off his face.

                "Maybe it was.  But it proved my point, Spike.  Didn't it."  Spike glared at him, and Xander finally reached out, slow, and touched the sharp curve of  cheekbone; brushed his fingers back through Spike's shower-damp hair. 

                "You're a vampire.  I know that.  You kill.  I know that.  But..."  Xander smiled softly at him, caressing Spike's cheek, and Spike leaned into it, so feline that Xander almost laughed.  "You're a vampire and I trust you.  A vampire whose soul glows like the sun.  Who loves me.   Who went back into the place that gives him nightmares to help rescue - "

                "Me.  And I'm kinda wondering why."  Xander and Spike both whipped around, startled, to stare at Oz, who leaned in the doorway of the living room.  The werewolf was pale and a little shaky on his feet, but his green gaze was steady and calm.  Spike laughed, slightly hysterical, and put his head down in his hands again, scrubbing his fingers through his hair.

                "Hey, Oz.  Sorry about - "  Xander made a vague gesture, himself and Spike, and Oz shrugged, pushing away from the door jamb and shuffling over to where the other two were.  He eased himself down, cross-legged, looking first at Xander and then at Spike.

                "I remember you, from - school.  Parent-teacher night.  Saw you in the halls...  Spike.  Vampire."

                "S'right, mate.  You care?"  Oz shook his head, glancing over at Xander.

                "I knew back at - that place.  But you were with Buffy, smelled like Xander, all over.  Figured you were...friendly, somehow.   And Xander smells like you.  So I guess that's why the rescue? You two together?"  Xander choked, trying not to laugh, and then he had to.  He sprawled down onto his butt, snorting, and Spike slid down until he, too, was sitting, kicking Xander's foot.

                "You great tit," Spike said, and smirked.  Xander sat up straight, shooting a mock-furious look at Spike.

                "Don't call me weird English slang things - I don't know how to respond.  So, don't care?  I mean, about Spike and me...the grrr thing - all that?"   Oz shrugged, rubbing his hands up his arms as if he were cold.

                "S'cool with me, man.  I mean, the yelling and the growling was a bit...but you guys seem ok.  That looks a little sore."  Oz was peering at the bite, and Xander reached up to it, ruefully fingering his torn t-shirt. 

                "It'll heal.  He wasn't actually trying to hurt me."  Xander just looked at Oz for another minute, grinning.  *Thanks, Oz - for being...just calm.  Needed that*

                "So - how're you feeling?  Do you  - are you hungry?"

                "Kinda.  My stomach's kinda...  Mostly I'm thirsty.  I'd really like some water."  His voice seemed to have mended itself, but the bruises were still stark on his face.   Xander scrambled to his feet, pulling Spike up with him.

                "Why don't you help our guest to a chair, vampire-mine."  Spike lifted an eyebrow, cocking his head to one side as if considering whether or not to comply.  Then he swooped in and got a quick kiss in on Xander's lips before turning to Oz and holding out a hand.

                "C'mon, mate.  Up you go."  Xander grinned and went over to the 'fridge for water, filling a glass and putting it on the table for Oz.  Spike helped Oz to a chair; the brief nap seemed to have stiffened the werewolf up and he moved gingerly, wincing.  He drank in silence, watching as Xander settled in a chair and Spike leaned behind him, the long,  pale fingers going out almost unconsciously to stroke Xander's hair. 

                "So - what do you... You're welcome to stay here as long as you like,  no problem, but...what are you gonna do about...Willow?"

                Oz looked down at his glass, stroking his finger along the sweating side.  He sighed, then looked back up at Xander.

                "I think...Willow and me...that's over.  That girl - Tara?   She was - all over Willow.  Like - well, a lot like you two."

                "Yeah?"  *Huh.  I thought they were getting close, but - didn't realize...  That must hurt...*

                "Thought those two were up to somethin'," Spike murmured, and Xander tipped his head back to look at him.

                "You did?  Why?"

                "Same as wolfman, here," Spike said, and tapped his nose.  Xander grimaced and looked back at Oz. 

                "You know, stuff like that just makes me want to bathe about five times a day."  Xander yawned suddenly, hugely, and looked around at the clock on the microwave.  *1:16.  Damn.  How do I do this to myself?*  "Sorry, guys, but I gotta go to sleep.  I gotta be up early for work.  You two...stay up, if you wanna.  Watch TV or whatever, I don't mind.  Ok?"

                "Sure," Oz said, and lifted his glass to his mouth, gulping down half the water.  Spike followed Xander into the bedroom, catching him around the waist and kissing him hard, a desperate kiss of passion and claiming and maybe fright, as well.  Spike reluctantly pulled away, resting his forehead on Xander's. 

                "Don't do that again, love.  You could have died."

                "But I didn't.  I trust you, Spike.  I see you.  Don't ever forget that."  Xander kissed him gently, and Spike sighed. 

                "You're crazy, to be like that."

                "Crazy in love.  And - the chip didn't go off.  So I'd say  that doubly proves my point.  You didn't have any intention of hurting me at all." Xander said, and smiled.  Spike shook his head, but he was smiling, too.

                "Want me to stay?" Spike asked, and Xander kissed him again, flicker of tongue over Spike's lips.

                "Go and sit with Oz for a little, would you?  He might be...  he might need it."  Spike looked at him, and nodded finally, and shut the door softly behind him as he went out.  Xander brushed his teeth quickly and then got into bed, stretching hard and trying to let all the tension out that had accumulated through the day.

                *I won that round.  I think.  I still trust him.  I hope - I just hope he can...  Fuck.  I wonder if I lived anywhere but Sunnyhell if my love life would be normal*   Xander burrowed into his pillow, which held the faint scent of Spike, and was asleep.

                When he woke, it was to the unaccustomed sensation of warmth all along his back, and he slapped at the alarm and turned in the bed, wary of what he might find.  He couldn't help but grin at what he did see.  Spike, on his belly, with one arm flopped over the silken back of a large, red-brown wolf.  As Xander stared, the wolf  *Oz.  Damn, that's Oz.  Forgot how beautiful.  Wow*   raised his head and gazed at Xander with wide black eyes.  

                "Hey.  Work."  Xander said softly, and reached out to smooth the thick mane of hair along Oz's shoulders.   Oz made a 'humf' sound down in his chest and lay his head back onto the quilt.  Xander slid out of bed and got ready to go.  Before he left, he tiptoed back into the bedroom and pressed a kiss to Spike's forehead.  *A vampire and his wolf.  Hah.  Wish I had a camera.  Least they'll both be safe*   He was in his truck and down the street before he remembered that Jack would be there that day.   He glanced back at his house, lit by the rising sun, and mentally shrugged.  One way or another, by tonight they'd both know what Jack could do.   And then - things would change.  *And please, for the better*