BY : katharina99
Category: -Buffy the Vampire Slayer > Slash - Male/Male > Spike(William)/Xander > Spike(William)/Xander
Dragon prints: 18613
Disclaimer: I do not own Buffy the Vampire Slayer (BtVS), nor any of the characters from it. I do not make any money from the writing of this story.

There had been times during Alexander Harris' young life when he'd wanted nothing more than to be the focus of his mentor's full attention, but with Buffy's slaying and Willow's ever growing magical powers, the watcher's focus had always been concentrated on something or someone else. Today, though, strangely enough, the young man was half torn between wanting to sink into the very earth and wanting to run and hide behind Giles so the older man could fix things and make it all better, in equal measure. He prayed silently that the former librarian had just gotten there, hopefully after the groping had stopped. His luck going the way it had of late, the construction worker kind of doubted it. He suspected the older man had gotten an eyeful. Xander was mortified by the idea that Rupert Giles might have seen him moaning under Spike's sure touch like some kind of nymphomaniac.

"Xander, are you alright?" the Englishman asked. Wearing jeans and a sweatshirt, he looked nothing like the tweed-clad authority figure Xander had first met as a teen. Giles didn't look disgusted, as he'd expected. His face was filled with concern.

"I'm okay," the young man began, wanting to reassure his older friend, but not really sure of the answer himself.

"Kitten, go run this through the checkout line, and then wait for me in the car," the vampire snapped, tossing the keys at the bewildered mortal. His Master looked really mad, like his Dad after a weekend bender. What bug had gotten up his ass? Why couldn't he take five minutes to tell one of his friends he was all right? Well, physically at any rate.

"Please, Master," the young man began. He needed to know that the others were all right. He knew the girls were probably really mad at him for doing this, Buffy in particular. She was the Slayer; the one in charge who called the plays. Xander had known though that she would never be able to make this decision. She would never have been able to sacrifice one of them. The Buffster was a hero and they just didn't do these things.

Just like she could never have hurt Dawnie even if it meant saving the whole world. So, Xander had taken the choice from her and performed the binding ritual on himself. He just hoped that Buffy would be able to forgive him for this.

"Xander, listen to me, the girls have been working non-stop since they called me. We will find a way to…" the middle-aged man franticly insisted. Giles looked worn out, like he'd been up all night. Xander wondered when he'd flown in, as far as he knew Giles hadn't been scheduled for a visit for months.

"Now, Kitten," the vampire snarled angrily, putting himself between the brunet and the watcher, making it quite obvious he wanted Giles nowhere near his possessions. He hadn't seen Spike this hostile in a long time. Then again, Xander knew full well that there was no love lost between the two men. The mortal Brit had a tendency to ignore Spike unless the vampire was needed as extra muscle or for his demon expertise. Come to think of it, they all kinda did that, Xander reflected guiltily.

"Has he harmed you?" the older man sounded worried, brushing past the furious creature with impunity. Taking the bewildered young man by the shoulders, the elder Scooby looked over his former charge, carefully looking for any injuries. The concern on Giles' face made Xander want to burst into tears. I certainly have G-man's attention know.

"Oh, Xander, how could you be so bloody stupid? Do you have any idea how worried we all have been about you?" the Brit grumbled, shaking the brunet slightly. The older man looked about ready to breakdown himself. Xander felt horrible for putting his friends through this. The last time he'd seen Giles looking this ragged and worn out was right after Buffy had died, the second time.

Giles and the girls were wasting their time. Those freaky representatives from the Powers had been very clear. Once the binding ritual was performed, it was final. The spell was irrevocable. There was no way out, well nothing that would ever happen in this lifetime. Xander had known that going in. He thought things through and made his choice. He had to try and explain that somehow, so the others could move on with their lives somehow.

"I didn't… didn't know what else to do. They said if the orb wasn't restored that it would bring a hell on Earth worse than Glory or Acathla could ever have…" Xander started to explain hurriedly. He'd had to decide quickly. Everything their research had managed to come up with had corroborated what the Oracles had told them. Time had been running out and Giles hadn't been here for most of the Buffy-Spike thing. He didn't know how resentful the blond vampire was over the way the slayer had treated him. Xander himself hadn't realized just how bitter Spike was until their former nemesis had gotten the means to get even.

The mortal heard his Master howl in anguish as he furiously tried to extricate his pet from the elder human's grasp. The young man watched guiltily as the blond vampire fell to his knees in agony. Obviously Xander knew that the chip hurt. He knew it caused his owner huge pain when it fired, but for some reason he'd never truly allowed himself to see it.

He always turned his thoughts away, never letting himself think about how cruel the tiny device actually was. Of course, he hadn't seen the chip go off in a very long time. Spike almost never showed physical aggression towards humans anymore. The peroxide blond's attacks were now almost exclusively of verbal nature. That alone, Xander reasoned, should have told him something. The vampire had been forced to repress his true nature so much he taken to hanging around the slayer just so he could get in his spot of violence. That was fine while it worked to our advantage wasn't it? We didn't bitch when he was picking up the slack when Buffy was gone.

"Master," Xander tentatively reached out, wanting to placate the creature. Spike had been so unusually considerate today, so much so that Xander foolishly allowed himself to forget how volatile and dangerous the vampire was.

"Get yourself to the fucking car right now or we won't have to wait the bloody three weeks," the vampire snapped, shoving the mortal's outstretched hand away. He could tell Spike was serious. The vampire had every intention of nixing the probationary period he had set and making him quit his job right away if he disobeyed again. He'd never seen the vampire so absolutely furious, not even back when they’d been bitter enemies.

"Xander, what is he talking about?" Rupert Giles demanded. Spike looked so mad, picking himself of the ground. He looked at the older man, still wanting his reassurance, but realized there was nothing Giles could do for him now. As his Master had reminded him just a little while ago, he'd gotten himself into this and now he had to live with the consequences, even if that meant he'd never get to see his friends again. The thought made the brunet's chest tighten painfully.

"I have to go now," the younger man insisted, pulling out of the Englishman's grasp. He hoped to God he hadn't already screwed things up irreparably with his Master. Spike was fully capable of making his life a living hell. Maybe if he went right now things could still be fixed.

"Let him go, Watcher," his master hissed. "He's going to be the one paying later if you keep him here. As things are he's already perilously close to having to make a phone call to work when we get home."

"No one is asking you Spike. Now shut the bloody hell up, before they have to call for a dustpan to clean up the rubbish off the floor of this aisle," the British watcher spat viciously, turning back towards the departing young man. Xander could not meet the older man's eye. He hoped someday that his friends would be able to understand that he'd done what he felt he had to do.

"Kitten, pack the groceries into the trunk, then wait for me in the car. I'll be out shortly. I have a few things to discuss with the shopkeeper here. We'll go over your punishment when we get home," the blond grumbled, making it clear this was Xander's last warning. The mortal nodded, embarrassed. After having been warned twice that his Master would revoke his permission to keep his job should he not obey, he was taking no chances. He turned their cart back towards the cash registers, not giving the battling men behind him a second glance.

He could hear Giles calling after him, but forced himself to ignore it. If those two didn't stop, someone was going to call mall security. At least he knew Spike couldn't hurt Giles. Despite the Englishman's threat to stake the vampire, Xander was fairly sure the bleached one was safe. Giles wouldn't risk fooling with the spell that bound them. Would he? No, the older man was too level headed for that.

Xander numbly made his way to the checkout line, self-consciously waiting in line till it was his turn. He looked like a gigolo. Not that he would know what one looked like, but he was sure it involved pants so tight that he was sure the seams were going to give way any second. He stood rigid behind the cart, trying to hide the still substantial stiffy he was sporting behind his too-short coat.

He couldn’t believe he was still… even after the entire shouting match and the thing with Giles. Then again, Spike had taken great pains to get him in that state. To say that Xander was confused would be a gross understatement. He wasn't sure how he felt. A couple of days ago, he would have punched anyone who would have told him he would be enjoying some of the things Spike had made him do since he'd first walked into his Master’s crypt.

He stood in line nervously, trying to pick out any sounds from where he'd left Giles and his Master. None of the expected screaming or the sounds of things being thrown were coming from produce, so Xander reasoned the two angry men he'd left were not actively trying to kill each other. The mortal started absently loading things unto to slightly worn conveyer belt, resisting the urge to run back and check. The most perplexing thing was that the young man was not entirely certain whom exactly he was most worried about.

"Sir, that will be $107.93, please," the chubby cashier groused from behind her register.

"Sorry, I guess I was kind of in my own little world," he apologized giving her a phony smile as he held out his charge card. The cashier grunted, but finally smiled back as she accepted his payment. Xander didn't know how he was going to make ends meat if the vampire kept his current spending pattern up. As far as he knew, the evil undead had no means to support himself, so they were going to have to live on whatever Xander managed to bring in.

The question now seemed to be would the brunet be working for his current employer or at something more exotic and possibly horizontal. Not even close to the worst thing Xander had imagined might happen to him, yet it sort of was. The very idea made him sick to his stomach. Hopefully, Spike would cool off a little once he was away from Giles.

He was surprised how adamant the vamp had been about getting him away from Giles. He hadn't expected to be attending the weekly meetings anymore, but he hadn't thought Spike would flip out if he tried to say a few words if they just came across one of his friends. Sunnydale was a small town, he reflected, as he made his way out to the parking lot. They were bound to run into some people they knew. Xander hadn't really thought about what it was going to be like having Spike be the only being he was ever really going to be permitted to be in be in close contact with for the rest of his life.

He shivered, sitting down in the passenger seat, as he waited for his Master to return. Spike was going to be his entire life, for the rest of his life. The blond could be in charge of every minute aspect of his life if he so chose. He'd already started. Spike got to decide where Xander lived, where he worked, what he ate, how he dressed. Why not who he got to talk to? Xander supposed Spike could move them to China or the Yukon if he suddenly had a mind to. He could take them somewhere were Xander would never see the people important to him again, not that it looked like that was going to happen anyway.

No more helping Buffy with patrolling or fixing things around the Summers’ house. No more picking up Dawnie at school. No more letters or phone calls to Giles. No more evenings spent talking about his botched relationships over coffee with Willow. No more chances to make things right with Anya. Maybe if he was a really good boy, Spike would let him talk to Clem once in a while.

At least if Spike let him keep his job, he'd be able to talk to the other guys in the crew once in a while. Though he didn't suppose he'd be allowed to just go for out for a beer after a hard day at work. He'd need to go right home to service his Master. He had to keep Beach-Boy happy if he wanted to keep his job so he could be around people he would never really be allowed to get to know on any sort of personal level. Hugging himself, the brunet stared out of the car window dejectedly as he waited for his Master.

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