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Chapter 16

They woke at much the same time, Giles in a warm heap, aware that Spike was waking, Spike stretched out and languid, listening to the change in the human's breathing. Once more, they came together, softly exploring the love between them, Giles wanting to touch and hold, Spike to taste and smell: all their senses engaged in the uniqueness the other represented. This time they didn't need penetration, they held and played with erections that made them laugh, with weeping that made them hiss with anticipation and, eventually, cum that splattered into the other's hand, over bellies that begged to be covered, and tongues that went down eagerly to enjoy the release.

Still laughing, they pulled apart and lay on their backs, fingers just lightly touching a hard ab or a soft nipple. After a while, Spike lit a cigarette, and they shared it together, Spike holding it for Giles as the human took guilty drags. 'I really need not to do this.'

Spike laughed again. 'You could add it to the stuff yer gonna tell ya mum an' dad. Hey, oldies, I'm fucking a vampire and, oh, I smoke.'

Giles chuckled. 'Thank you for reminding me of that conversation, Spike.'

'You've been thinkin' of it all night, mate. I could tell.'

Giles smiled and slid down a little so he could lay his head on Spike's chest. 'Any useful suggestions? And the emphasis there is on the word useful, Spike.'

'Not really. 'S not something I've ever had to do. Although I did 'ave to tell me old mum I'd become a vampire. That weren't easy.'

Giles sat up. 'Bloody hell! Why did you do that; I mean how?'

'Was easy in the end. I just ripped 'er throat out and drained 'er. She sorta got it then.'

When he looked back on this conversation, Giles was profoundly grateful that he reacted as he did. Said in the same humourous tone that Spike always used, Giles was a hair's breath away from being revolted and angry, but something in Spike's expression made him bite back his bitter comment. Instead, he pulled Spike into his arms and began to run his fingers softly through the rumpled blond hair, his own worries suddenly put into perspective. 'I am so, so sorry, Spike. And thank you. What I have to do or say, suddenly seems rather petty after that.'

Spike did not say anything for a while but, eventually, pulled away and lit another cigarette. Again, with a deceptively light tone he said, 'Angelus made me go back to 'er like that. Said she'd cause a rumpus otherwise when she found the grave.'

Giles frowned. 'You don't have to tell me this….'

Spike looked him directly in the eye. 'Yes I do. That's what I'm tryin' to say. See… I've been thinkin' 'bout it all night, too. Angelus forced me, see. An' I wanted 'im so much, I couldn't say no to 'im, even though I've lived with what I did to 'er all me unlife. Always will.'


'No! Don't you get it? I don't wanna be like him with you. I don't want…. Oh fuck it… just don't tell 'em if it's too hard. It ain't that important, and I'm just being that prima donna you 'ccused me of, I think.'

'No. Don't Spike. Don't say another word. It is important because you are important. Be quiet; let me say this. You are the most important thing in my life at the moment. I may be slightly delirious; I may be talking with other parts of my body than my brain, but at this moment, in this bed, there is nothing, or no one, I would exchange for you. I can say anything to you, Spike, whether you understand it or not… and… ow, mind your chip… I can do anything, want anything, need anything, and none of it shocks you. With you, I can be something I've wanted to be all my life. But do you know the funniest thing? I can still be just me with you and you want that as well. So, I'm going to go down to breakfast with my parents and tell them I'm in love. And if they can't be happy for me, well, then that's their problem, not ours. Wait… and when we get back to Sunnydale, I'm going to tell the others, too. They'll deal or they won't. We'll face that together.'

Resolute at last, Giles climbed off the bed, grimaced at the dried cum over his body, seemed to think that this might armour him to his cause, and dressed anyway. With a glance at Spike, he left.

Spike lay back carefully; he was feeling a little delicate… being so precious and all. He grinned, then frowned at the seriousness of the moment, then grinned again, then tried to send good thoughts to help Giles along. Having little practice of those, he sent him some bad ones, feeling (as with the dried cum) they'd probably be of more use anyway.

Ten minutes later, Giles came back and sat on the edge of the bed. 'Bugger.'

Spike's eyes widened. 'Shit? They actually called you that?'

'What? Oh, no, I mean, father has gone away to visit an old friend for a couple of days. I can't possibly tell mother without them both together.'

'Oh… bugger.'

'Quite. I was all worked up to it. Now I just….'

'Wanna shag instead then?'

Giles turned and smiled. 'You know I would, but - yes, sorry, there's a but, but not one of the good as Harris would say - mother has rather organised me for the day. She's throwing a party on Saturday, and she wants me to drive her around with invitations. Sorry.'

'Don't matter, pet.' Giles looked at him astonished, and Spike grinned. 'I'll lie 'ere and think of something new for you tonight, yeah?'

Giles pulled him closer. 'I think I've got time for one kiss.'

'Poof,' Spike didn't say more in case they wasted that short time.

When Giles finally came down into the hall, his mother looked up with a smile then said, 'Rupert darling, you look rather hot; are you well?'

Giles reassured her he was, and they went out together into the crisp autumn sunshine.

Spike watched them leave from the shadows of the thick curtain, stretched, and went back to bed for the day.

The next few days passed in a blur of activity for Giles. Caterers had to be organised, florists booked, staff hired. He despaired at the cost of it all but couldn't say no to anything when he saw his mother's eager face. The entire county had been invited - anyone who mattered - and Giles spent the few days before his father's return so engaged in worrying about this, that the much dreaded conversation slipped from his mind. Giles received precisely the amount of help from Spike that he anticipated would be forthcoming, but he contented himself that at least the vampire didn't actively object to the idea of the party. Until he realised he was expected to attend that was. At that, Spike displayed a rare bit of genuine petulance. He utterly refused to discuss the idea and, that evening, when Giles laid out one pair of black trousers and a white shirt for him, he snatched them up and threw them on the fire.

Giles whirled on him and almost made to hit him as the clothes blanketed the flames and began to smoulder. 'You bloody fool!'

'I'm not goin'. I told you all bloody week. I'm not goin'; I'm not your fucking pet, Giles. You can't take me around and show me off.'

'I don't want to take you anywhere or show any bits of you! What are you talking about?'

'You do. You wanna make a bleedin' spectacle of me cus I don't talk right or do the right things.'

'Oh, don't give me that. I know bloody well you put all that accent on. It's your little joke on everyone.' Calmly, but pointedly, he shook out the second shirt from its drawer and rummaged in the wardrobe for a second pair of trousers. He laid them on the bed. 'Sometimes, you can be the most….' They followed the first pair.

Giles didn't hit him, although he was sorely tempted to. Instead, he went towards the open drawer but, before he actually put a hand to it, he paused. Hanging his head, he said wearily, 'I just wanted - for the first time - to have someone at one of these damned parties that I actually wanted to be there. I wanted to look up and see you. I wanted to think about you. I wanted you to be looking at me. Do what you like, Spike.' He shut the door extremely quietly and left alone.

Spike stood in the darkened room, smothered by the claustrophobic burning smell.

Giles stood with his parents, brightly welcoming guests. He spoke to everyone; he made sure everyone had a drink. He kept the bright, false smile on his face that he had worn in this company for over twenty years. Just when he felt like screaming, he turned and saw Spike. The vampire was leaning against the wall just to one side of the wide mantelpiece. He had on the last pair of trousers, one of the close-fitting T-shirts, and a white shirt left loose and unbuttoned over it. He wasn't smoking; he wasn't doing anything. He was just watching Giles. Giles turned away to compose himself then turned back with a look that Spike could not mistake. He made some excuse to the person he was talking to and went out of the large patio doors into the dark. He sensed, rather than heard, Spike behind him and, when they were far enough away from the light, he turned and grabbed him painfully. Spike grunted but came to Giles just as hard. They almost ate each other with the kiss. Giles ground himself on Spike, arousing them both. He pulled away. 'I'm sorry….'

Spike just shrugged and pulled him back. Eventually, Giles broke away to breathe and groaned a little, glancing down at his front. 'I can't go back in like this. Look at me!' Spike did and hissed at the swelling marring the smooth lines of Giles' suit. Suddenly, he pushed at Giles' shoulders, forcing him back against the trellis that covered the walls to either side of the glass doors. He undid the zip, never letting his gaze fall from Giles'. 'What if someone comes out for a cigarette? Don't.' Spike ignored him and slipped a hand inside the opening. 'Spike, don't. I can't risk it.' The swelling only increased the more he protested.

''S like the old days, ain't it? I missed this. You gonna feed me after?'

Giles moaned. 'For God's sake, Spike, not here, not now.' His erection throbbed in the cold air, the damp tip cooling instantly as Spike exposed it to the night. 'No. I can't. You can't.' Spike fell to his knees and took the erection to the base of this throat in one shocking, swift move. With a hand cupping his sac through his trousers, and sucking that drew him out beyond his own volition, Giles came within a few seconds. Like a strong tide obeying the moon, he surged onto the welcoming shore; he shot down Spike's throat and filled his mouth. Giles began to tremble and held onto the trellis for support. He bit his tongue in an effort not to cry out and felt he would never taste blood again without remembering this moment in the moonlight with Spike.

When every drop was gone, when he was completely soft, Spike tucked him away and stood up. He did up the zip, straightened the tie, smoothed down the hair, put Giles' glasses straight, then leant in and kissed him. 'So, who's at this bleedin' party then?'

Giles swallowed, as if he had just had a vast mouthful of liquid given him, and turned rather shakily to the doors. Smirking behind his back, Spike put a hand on the warm shoulder and prepared to be bored.

Standing in that divide between the light and the dark, Giles chuckled slightly as he looked into the room from the outside. 'They look funny from here.'

'They looked funny from in there. believe me.'

'No, I mean, they've divided exactly into two. Look, there's my father with the church - that's the Bishop, the dean, and that's the chap he's been staying with, Father Julian Forbes. I don't know who that younger man with him is, maybe his new curate. The rest of them are all from the local churches. And look, over there with my mother, that's the Lord Lieutenant and most of the local landowners. It's rather sad.'

Spike was lighting a cigarette and thinking about finding something to kill, so he didn't hear or care about any of this. 'Cool. Get me a drink?'

Giles nodded and went back to the light. Spike spun around and went back to the dark.

He found a spot out of observation of anyone should they look out and sat on the low wall that surrounded the patio, his legs stretched out, leaning back into the thick ivy. He smoked slowly, enjoying the solitude. Every so often he peered in through the glass at the assembled throng with bored disgust. He had the distinct impression that his presence at this party would not increase the average age of the guests by much.

He stared up at the sky and was amused to see the same moon as he watched so often at home. There, he'd thought it again: home. Thinking about Sunnydale made him smile and, for some odd reason, he thought about Xander Harris again. He fetched him out of the hole he'd left him in and that made him smile even more. Harris would have worn some of his amusing trousers to this party, just because he could. He sat Harris on the wall with him, tested him out with a few caustic comments and, when the boy bit back satisfactorily, let him stay. Buffy wanted to come to the party, too, so Spike let her talk to the Bishop for a while and chuckled at his expression at her in-depth description of slaying tactics. She got bored as quickly as he had and was glad to join the other two refugees on the wall. She hit him first though, which felt so good, he provoked her into doing it again.

With a grin of glee, he brought the witches to the party, but they were sickeningly well behaved, and stood nervously giggling in one corner. He wasn't having that and made one of them snog the other, but that got him a little distracted, so they came to join the rest of the gang on the wall. The gang. He wondered if, in some perverse way, they were missing him. Not that he was missing them of course… but the Bronze would be opening up about now: the pool table lit by that subtle diffused…. He tried not to be too despondent and brought the grenade out to play. He let Anya drift around the throng for a while picking a target, finally letting her loose on the Lord Lieutenant. Spike was just getting her to ask the old man why he was wearing majorettes' tassels, when an annoyed voice distracted him.

'What are you doing?'

'What does it look like I'm bloody doing? I'm at your soddin' party.' The gang looked astonished to see Giles, and Spike was dearly tempted to snog him, just to see their faces.

'It's freezing out here. Come inside.'


'There's someone I want you to meet.'

'Not interested.'

'Stop being so immature, Spike. Besides, the alcohol is all inside, no?'

'You can't fucking tempt me in with booze; I'm not a soddin' kid! An' it better be decent fucking booze!' He stomped in after Giles and received a small sherry for his troubles. Even Giles got the look Spike gave him and fetched him a large glass of red wine instead. While Spike was still distracted by this, Giles dragged him over to a woman who was standing looking at some books on a large bookcase. She was roughly about Giles' age, and Spike allowed her to be attractive, if you were into tweed.

'Camilla? This is William.'

He looked at Spike and hissed between gritted teeth. 'Behave….'

Spike gave him a scowl but turned to the woman with small grin. 'Hello. I'm William, but everyone calls me Spike.'

'How amusing! Everyone calls me Knickers.' She mistook Spike's look of abject boredom for the puzzlement her comment usual elicited and added with a bark of laughter, 'Camilla? Cami-knickers? Knickers…. Hah!'

Spike closed his eyes and allowed his head to nod for a moment, until a foot was pressed painfully on one of his and, Giles, with a flash of a smile at Camilla, hissed, 'Spike!'

'Rupert, darling, why don't you fetch Will… Spike and me another drink; be an angel do….'

Spike grinned happily at Giles' annoyed look and turned pointedly to the woman. 'So… tell me, how did you meet Giles?'

As soon as Giles was out of earshot, Spike lost interest in anything but his rapidly emptying glass. He gave a long, loud sigh of boredom, hoping she'd move away. Unexpectedly, she laid a sympathetic hand on his arm and said seriously, 'I think it's a damn poor show that Rupert won't mount you properly while you're here.'

For the first time in his unlife, Spike's drink went down the wrong way, and he spluttered a small spray of wine over the woman's tweed. She didn't seem to notice, apparently lost in thought.

'Err… what did you say? Did 'e tell you 'bout us?' Spike couldn't decide whether to be more shocked that Giles had told her, or annoyed about the long-standing, cosy relationship with this woman it implied.

'Of course, I've known Rupert all my life. And I told him flatly, if he won't mount you, I will. I'd be delighted to.'

'Bloody hell! What did you just say? Do you do this sort of thing often at parties?'

'Of course. All the time. Notorious for it!'


'Well, what do you say? You up for it?'

Spike's mouth opened and closed a couple of times before he managed to say, 'What? Me on me own, like; or you thinking of the three of us?'

'Oh, no… Rupert gave it up years ago. I can't persuade him to save his life.'

Spike nodded as if something was beginning to make sense. 'Yeah. 'E was in a bad way when I met 'im, now's you mention it. All diffident and 'barrassed 'bout it. He's better now though.'

'Jolly good. And good for you! So, you on?'


'Not scared, are you?'

Spike was, but he wasn't about to admit this. 'Well… I'm not 'xactly….'

'Stuff. One look at you, and I knew you'd be a bloody natural. Perfect build for it, you see? Just come over and watch me for the first time if you like. Get your pecker up a bit.'

'What!' Spike began another violent fit of coughing, and she patted him complacently on the back. 'You'll do it on yer own an' let me bloody watch?'

She snorted rather unflatteringly. 'Well, not entirely on my own - there's the horse, of course.'

''Orse?' Spike swallowed awkwardly and attempted to muster some cool nonchalance, but a small squeak betrayed him. ''Orse?'

She looked at him a little puzzled but said slowly, 'Be a bloody silly activity without it. Not a horse in this district I haven't had between these legs, I can tell you.'

'Bloody hell! Seen it on the Net like but didn't think for real; I mean 'ere… I mean…. Bints that do that are usually a bit more… ragged, ya know? Russian and the like.'

'Nonsense. What are you talking about? It's wonderfully healthy for you.'

'But….' Spike was floundering so badly he actually began to bite the edges of his nails in confusion. 'So this 'orse like. He's…. You…. Are they easy to get… ready? Cus I always wondered 'bout that. I mean… do they need another 'orse first? To get all excited like.'

'Nonsense. Good English stock, that's what does it. One sight of the leather, and I find they're raring to go!'

'Leather? Oh bloody hell! Ain't it kinda of dangerous on yer own? I 'eard Catherine the Great died doin' it… when the bleedin' 'orse fell on her!'

'Couldn't agree with you more. Bloody foolish to do it alone. No, I'm part of a local group.'

'Local group!' He looked around the room wildly. 'There's other lasses that'll do it with yer?'

'Sadly, no. Haven't been able to lay my hands on a bloody woman who's keen around here for years. But there's no shortage of men; one mustn't complain.'

Spike felt his legs getting weak. 'Men! Men? Oh God! That ain't on the bleedin' Net! Don't that make… jeez! Don't that make their bums a bit sore?'

'Well the first few times, of course. Same for everyone really.' She gave a scarily horse-like laugh. 'First time I had a really big bugger, I couldn't bloody walk for days. It was an absolute hoot!'

'Oh, God! And Giles knows 'bout this? I don't believe you!'

She looked around conspiratorially, as if walls had ears. 'Frankly, I rather think he had a nasty experience once - you know, horse on top of him, crushed under the weight - it rather put him off for life.'

Spike jerked back, his relationship with Giles flashing through his mind: the initial reticence, the fear, the diffidence, his odd tastes when prompted….

He tried to drink his wine, but his hand was actually shaking. Camilla suddenly laid a light touch on his arm and patted him sadly. 'And I hear you've had to give up hunting completely. Such a shame.'

Spike's eyes widened. He'd told her that, too! This was getting worse and worse. He removed her hand without looking too obvious and replied rather weakly. 'Well, ya know… the government….'

'Don't tell me! Don't tell me! They'd have no bloody hunting at all, if they had their way. They don't understand; that's the problem.'

'Nah. Guess not. So, you're not bothered? 'Bout me being a….'

'What have you two been talking about then? Sorry, I got tied up with the Bishop; couldn't get away.'

'Rupert, darling, we didn't need you at all! William and I have been having a lovely chat about riding. He's coming over soon, and I'll take him out for a canter around the area. It's shocking you haven't gotten him in the saddle yet. Such a pity he can't hunt, too. We've had a bloody fox at our chickens every night this week.'

Spike stared at her. 'Riding? Fox?'

Giles looked at Spike's face and went a little pale. He grabbed the vampire's arm and, mumbling apologies at the astonished woman, dragged him back out to the patio. 'What the hell have you said?'

Spike, reviewing the conversation in the light of new information, began to review their relationship once more. He gave the smallest of grins and lit a cigarette. 'Nothing, pet. Nothin' to worry 'bout. So… you'd don't like 'orses then…?' He couldn't finish and collapsed against the wall, utterly unable to even enjoy his cigarette.

Giles gave him an annoyed look but, before he could say anything, his mother caught at his arm with an uncharacteristically nervous grasp. 'Darling. Come in to your father. He's…. Oh, come, do.'

Giles spun on his heel, followed his mother out of the room and into the dinning room. With a small curse, Spike tossed his cigarette into the flowerbeds and followed them.

Giles' father was collapsed in a chair; Giles crouched down in front of him. 'Father?'

The old man looked up, his eyes wide and glistening with tears. 'How could he?'

'What father? What?'

Giles' mother put a hand on his arm and, shaking her head, let him to one side. Spike eyed the old man warily but stood close enough to Giles to overhear the conversation.

'Don't ask him, darling. Suffice to say, Julian will not be coming to this house ever again.'

'What? Julian Forbes? Why?'

'Please, darling. Don't. I can't tell you, but he….'

'He's a sodomite, that's what. The man's a bloody queer!' The old man rose from the sofa, his distress now turned to anger. 'Forty years! I've known him for forty years!'

'What happened father?' Giles' voice was soft and calm, but Spike turned to him anxiously. He heard something else in that tone, and he feared what it portended.

'Right there!' The old man indicated towards a small sofa in the corner with disgust. 'He was there with that… that thing he turned up with tonight. I blame the damn television, that's what. No morals anywhere.'

'Perhaps you were mistaken, father; it's dark in here and….'

Giles' father rose to his full height and looked his son squarely in the eye. 'I know bloody sodomy when I see it, Rupert. I am not that naive. They should be taken out and hanged. That's what we'd have had done with them in the war.' With that cheery thought, he took his wife's arm and led her out.

Spike watched Giles carefully. Giles, knowing he was being watched, took his glasses off and polished them slowly. 'I should get back to the party and wind it up, I suppose. I'll say he's not well. I'm sure they'll understand.'


He looked at Spike. 'And what?'

'Don't bloody give me that, Giles. You know very well what I mean.'

'Shall we save this for later? I really must get back….' He walked out without further comment.

Spike pouted for a while and wandered over to the small couch thoughtfully. 'This is a bugger's muddle then, innit?' Only a piece of furniture, the couch did not reply but, for some reason, Spike found his own question funny and began to laugh, the sound harsh, and not very funny at all.

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