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Chapter 4

Unbelievably, Giles was hard for him again, before the sound of the vampire cursing the sun had finally disappeared. He could not bear the thought of the wait before their next meeting, knowing that Spike was very much in control of that agenda. He debated going after him but had no idea where the vampire was living.

As soon as it was dark, they began to patrol. Spike materialised as if the darkness created him, animated him. He tagged along, once more ignoring annoyed and pointed comments from the younger humans who didn't want him there. Giles' silence on the matter was far louder than any of their complaints, however, so Spike only grinned and continued to follow.

Spike could almost taste the watcher's need. It matched his own. He wanted to just grab him and take him on the ground. He didn't care about the children but had the restraint to realise the watcher probably would. The picture made him chuckle, but he pulled up short when Buffy whirled on him. 'I don't like vampires laughing. It's unnerving, and just why are you here?'

Suddenly, Giles stopped and said casually, but totally believably, 'He's agreed to show me something… to do with this Initiative outfit. You patrol Buffy; I'll catch up with you later.'

Buffy shrugged and carried on. Spike didn't hesitate. Before the humans were out of sight, he propelled Giles backward toward a crypt. He kicked the door in, checked it was empty of the living or the undead and dragged Giles in.

Giles resisted - more at the location than Spike's urgency, but Spike shushed his complaints and pushed him back against the wall. As earlier, Giles could not then have spoken if Spike had pushed him into hell itself, for the vampire's cool mouth was once again around his hot shaft. He just stood against the cold marble wall, staring unthinkingly at the cobwebs, tombs, and general dankness. His whole brain was focused on that one place on his body giving him pleasure, until it erupted in hot jets into the waiting, cool receptacle. He dug his fingers deep into Spike's hair once more, massaging the scalp with a strong grip.

When he was done, he pushed Spike off him and zipped himself back up. He looked down at the lowered blond head. 'I owe you some food.'

Spike looked up. Giles thought for the briefest moment that a look of incredulity flickered across the vampire's face but realised it was only a reflection from the moon, which had suddenly come out from behind a cloud, casting an eerie glow onto the pale face.

Spike gracefully rose to standing and lit a habitual cigarette, pacing around, poking into corners and examining the tombs. Giles watched him for a while then left, the pattern of their relationship now established.

Spike took him at home sometimes: in the kitchen or living room with almost no care for unexpected visitors, both getting careless in their desperation to play the game. Spike came to the shop and took him there, patrolling, wherever they could be alone, and every time Spike swallowed Giles, Giles gave the vampire blood.

Giles didn't even bother to cum every time - they didn't have time. There were always people around, always people demanding his attention. Sometimes, therefore, he contented himself with just touching Spike lightly: a hand in the small of his back when no one was looking, fingers meeting if he passed him some blood, and always the eyes. No one could stop them watching each other, studying the other coolly, appraisingly, urgently, despairingly. Sometimes, if the opportunity arose, they went further than a quick blowjob: Giles taking Spike from behind as he bent, vulnerable, over whatever useful thing the human could find - the back of the sofa, a tomb, even once or twice, the bed.

It was on one of these rare occasions when Spike had stayed after the meeting and Giles had taken him bent over the bed, that they actually spoke again, other than the formal discussion at the handing over of the blood.

Spike lay belly down on the bed, smoking lazily out of the corner of his mouth, his hand hanging down between puffs, flicking ash onto the floor. He hadn't even bothered to pull up his pants; they lay half-mast, exposing his firm, pale backside.

Following his hard, exhausting orgasm in that backside, Giles had fallen like a dead weight to the other side of the bed.

After a long time, when he thought the human had fallen asleep, Spike was surprised by a quiet, amused voice next to him. 'Xander asked if I'd started smoking.'

Spike turned his head and was taken aback to find the watcher very much awake and apparently studying him. 'He said the house was always full of smoke and my clothes smelt of tobacco.'

'Just as well his sense of smell ain't any better then. "Eau de vampire cum" - what'd'ya reckon?'

'Do you love me yet?'

Spike was not unknown for his rapid change of subjects to disconcert people, but the speed of that one threw him completely.

Giles chuckled at the expression of road-kill-in-the-waiting and turned onto his back, folding his arms behind his head. 'You're trying to pretend you only come here for the blood, remember?'

Spike expression was unreadable: clarity not helped by a particularly large cloud of smoke he blew in front of him. 'But I'm really here cus I love you. Yes, watcher, I do remember.'

Giles looked pleased. 'Good. So…? Are you… are we there yet?'

Spike also turned over on his back and lifted his hips to hitch his jeans up, not actually bothering to fasten them. Giles watched this simple act - the lifting of the hips - still astounded by Spike's affect over him. Even this - even this simplest of movements - caused him to swell slightly and made him want to reach over and touch the pale body next to him.

Spike took his time replying, but finally asked neutrally, 'And if we are… if I am… what then? We ain't gonna get all… lovey dovey shit or nothin'? Cus demon here… evil? And I don't 'ave feelings - or not real ones, anyway.'

Giles did not respond to Spike's rather too obvious need to be contradicted on this assertion but replied equally neutrally, 'Just the opposite. I was thinking…. I was thinking more along the lines of… exploitation. Doesn't love always lead to that in the end? Isn't love weakness: making yourself vulnerable to others' exploitation?'

Spike considered this for a moment then, carefully stubbing his cigarette out on the back of his hand, said, 'If only one git loves then, yeah, guess you're right.' The conversation made him uneasy, a sense of being still William provoked by the watcher's words.

'Well, that's the case here, isn't it? I don't love you. I'm just using you for sex. You're just a thing. You disgust me.'

'Uh huh.' Spike swung his legs off the bed. ''K then. I've gotta go now. Got things to do 'gain.'

He felt a warm hand on his shoulder. 'That's how it starts, Spike. Exploitation… emotional bullying. This is just in the fantasy, yes?' Spike turned. It was dark in the room, and even his preternatural vision couldn't read the human's face very well, but he saw no emotion that matched the harshness of the previous words. On the contrary, he saw something in the expression that he would have like to explore further, but Giles began to pull him back into the bed, and the moment was lost.

The human rose over the pale, thin body. 'See? I have you where I want you now. You love me; you're desperate for any sign of affection from me, so I can do what I like, say what I like, and you'll always come back for more. I hold all the cards, Spike.'

'Because I love you?'

Giles shifted slightly and groaned at this simple question. 'Say it again.'

Not questioning this time, Spike repeated his quiet words. 'Because I love you.'

Giles took Spike hard and fast, one hand clutched around his throat in a position unthinkable for a human, the other digging fingers into the hard shoulder flesh, but not flesh so hard that it did not flare red and begin to bruise at the strength of the man's grasp. Giles came noisily and enjoyably in Spike and, when he had finished, he looked down at the vampire beneath him. He unclenched his hand from the throat, brushing his fingers in wonder over the distinct marks - his marks. They could both sense the excitement of this thought for both could feel the slight swell and twitch of the penis still embedded in the slick channel.

Giles began to thrust again, still semi-hard and not very effectively, until Spike said very softly, 'Let me come too?' Giles opened his eyes, looked down in the face that looked supplicatingly up at him and swelled on the feelings of power that coursed through him.


He came, though: copiously once more into Spike, as he watched with fascination the blue eyes cloud over with suppressed, unfulfilled desire.

Giles had to give Spike his due - he proved to be a consummate actor. Little by little over the next few days, the vampire seemed to diminish somehow. He seemed physically smaller even - perhaps because he'd taken to leaving off his habitual duster, so the essential smallness of his frame was more obvious. He smoked more too - if that were possible - and not in the lazy, enjoyable way he usually did with that look that so plainly said, "I'm only doing this because I can and because you are all up-tight, PC, American arseholes." Now the smoking became a nervous habit: continual lighting up, a few puffs, stabbing out a hardly smoked butt and lighting another. When he wasn't smoking, he flicked his lighter open and closed or bit his nails until they bled around the edges and sucked the blood - seeming uncaring that the Big Bad was visibly shrivelling in front of the food.

Sometimes, he sported very noticeable bruising, to the extent that some of the gang even commented on it. Giles only interrupted their speculation with a dry, ironic, 'Not easy being a scab, is it vampire? Demons all ganging up on you?'

Spike only rubbed his arm nervously and replied sullenly, 'I need more food; 's all.'

Giles looked up from his tea. 'And you think you've earned it?'

The others started to take their cue from Giles -- treating Spike even more disdainfully than usual, making more fun of him and his chipped status - until Giles overheard this one day. He snapped a harsh comment at Harris, and the chief tormentor was effectively silenced. The look that passed between Spike and Giles after this almost made them both groan; it was intensely private, intensely charged. This was their game - they had no intention of letting anyone else share it with them.

As Spike diminished, Giles rose. The slight reserve and hesitancy in his manner disappeared. As Harris noted, not long after his chastisement and in his own, inimitable way, 'Giles took no shit off anyone.'

They would all have been surprised where Giles found this sense of power: deep in Spike's ass at night, as the vampire lay supine and silent beneath him.

Yet, through all this - through all the disdain, the abuse of power, the exploitation, the games they indulged in every night until even Spike's body ached for rest and peace - through all this, there came other moments that they did not care to examine or discuss. Giles, replete, exhausted, panting, would lie briefly on Spike before the inevitable rolling away, and Spike seemed to soften, accepting the weight. Moments when they stood too close, just a sleeve or the back of a hand lightly touching; moments when they caught one watching the other and could see in a puzzled expression something else, something that gave pause to the game. For, in these moments, they both knew no game was being played. They knew that something else was happening, but it was something neither could or would name. Giles sometimes wondered what would happen if he spoke of his thoughts, if he asked Spike what he was thinking as he lay under him, silent in the dark. What would Spike do if, when their hands briefly touched as Giles passed him his pay, he were to say, 'No more games?' but he feared the surrender of his control. He'd spent forty years building up his carefully constructed persona: too long now to let it drop because a pair of blue eyes looked at him as if they could convey or contain emotion; too long to allow a dead body to confuse him with its vitality. So he didn't say the things he wanted. He didn't take advantage of those moments when, despite the room being full, there seemed to be only the two of them. He kept his own counsel and felt that the vampire was doing so, too.

In some ways, this only added a subtle new flavour to the game. It was often after these moments of intimate clarity, these moments of unspoken truth, that Spike would prostrate himself more on the altar of Giles' power. It was after these moments that Giles took even more delight deconstructing Spike, revelling in the pieces of the vampire's carefully constructed persona - built up over many more than forty years - lying beneath him. What had he to fear from such small pieces?

So, when Spike refused Giles only hours after one of those odd moments - Giles looking up to find Spike watching him, a small, conspiratorial smile returned - it came as a shock to both of them.

They'd been on patrol. They'd been attacked. A normal Sunnydale night. Not so normal, however, was that the demons were accompanied by humans. Buffy, unwilling to actually kill these hangers-on despite their clear intention to kill her, held back, so the fight was particularly long. Although Spike dispatched a number of demons, he was helpless when a man with a vicious-looking knife turned on him. He caught the blow against his arm and, without his duster, the blade embedded into the muscle and sliced through tendons. He went down briefly on one knee, trying to pull the knife free, but the man kicked at him. Spike saw a movement out of the corner of his eye and, amazed, watched Giles shoot the man with a cross bow. The bolt only hit the man's leg, but he abandoned the fight and limped off.

Giles helped Spike to stand and led him a little way away. With a brief, inscrutable look, he returned to the battle. When the fight was over, Giles looked around for Spike and saw him sitting, head in his hands, against a crypt. He watched Buffy and the others depart and went over.

They never spoke - it wasn't what 'this' was about - but, seeing the deflated figure, he felt compelled to break this unacknowledged rule. 'What's wrong, Spike… other than the obvious, that is? Is it bad?'

Spike shook his head, not looking up. Giles hesitated for a moment then held his hand out. 'Coming?'

Spike snapped his head up, saw the watcher's expression and bit back whatever he had been about to say. He ignored the proffered hand, though, and climbed to his feet, favouring his uninjured arm. They walked side-by-side not speaking, until Giles said in a rush, 'This is just a game; it's not supposed to get anyone hurt.'

''S nothing to do with that. 'S this fucking chip.'

'You were faster than him; why didn't you duck?'

Spike stopped and lit a cigarette, and Giles waited. The vampire looked up from the tiny flame. 'Why do you care?'

'I don't know….' There was a long and very distinct pause, as they both waited to see if he would add, "that I do". He didn't, and the atmosphere between them shifted on the knowledge that something fundamental had been said by that omission. They continued to walk without speaking more, until they got back. Giles went straight up to the bathroom and rummaged for some supplies and found Spike, ripped, bloodied T-shirt cast off, sitting on the end of the bed, examining the wound.

Giles sat alongside him. The moment was charged and tense, and for the first time since they had begun to share their bodies, they shared touch that had nothing to do with sex, power, or the playing of games.

Giles washed through the deep cut with alcohol: expert, gentle. His face lowered to the task, he said, 'It needs stitching.'

Spike chuckled and, close as they were, the ripples of this emotion travelled directly across to Giles, lodging in his heart, causing an emptiness there to ache and demand attention.

Spike put his hand to the edges of the cut and just roughly pinched them together. 'I'll heal. Be all better in the mornin'.'

Giles was not convinced but bandaged him up unstitched as requested. When he finished, he got up and fetched Spike some blood, passing it over, saying pointedly, 'You've hardly earned this tonight.'

Spike pushed himself back on the bed and lay down wearily, turning over onto his good side. 'Not going to either.'

Giles looked at him, astonished: not that the vampire seemed to want to stay in his bed, not that Spike wanted to stay there even though he had clearly said they weren't going to have sex, but that he wanted Spike there, that he wanted to climb alongside him, hold him and talk to him about the frightening emotions that were clamouring to be heard, stirred to life by that slim body.

Giles repressed these dangerous thoughts, and the pain of that repression made him slightly angry. 'I think you are.' He crawled onto the bed and reached over to undo Spike's jeans.

Spike scrambled back against the headboard. 'No! Fuck off, Giles. I ain't playing - I'm hurt, and I'm not in the mood. No game, yes?'

Giles paused. Spike looked as shocked as he felt he must at what had just been said. No game…. If there was no game, no role-playing, then what were they both doing together on the bed?

Giles reached out a hand as if blindly seeking an answer to this unanswerable question. It landed on the side of Spike's boot, just at the top where a small patch of skin was visible. He swallowed nervously then said, 'It's not that bad a wound.'

Spike didn't move his leg away but seemed fascinated by the way the hand lay on his pale skin. He looked up sharply at Giles' comment. 'It's not this… it's….' He frowned, unable to continue.

'Tell me?' Whether it was the softness of the prompt or the feel of Giles' thumb, which was now gently stroking over the small patch of skin, Spike suddenly said in a rush, 'I don't wanna play what I am anyway: some fucking nothin'!' Giles pursed his lips and nodded wisely.

'Yes, I totally see what you mean… but just explain it will you?'

Spike didn't stop a small smile that crept around the corners of his lips and, when he saw this, Giles slowly edged closer until he was stilling cross-legged beside the vampire.

Spike blew a cloud of smoke at him then said, 'It was that bloody fat git back there. It was the first time.… Just realised for the first time how pathetic I've become, I guess.'

'Been made.'

Spike laughed out loud at this and gave Giles the credit for at least attempting to help. Giles heard what he'd said and amended weakly, 'Pathetic is hardly the word, surely?'

'I couldn't have spat on him, but I wanted to rip his fucking head off.'

'All right, I understand you are upset - furious even - about the chip, but why not….' He waved vaguely at the bed, hoping desperately that Spike would fill in the blanks without him having to name what they were doing.

Spike shrugged. 'It's playing weak and being weak. 'S too much for tonight. 'S all.'

They both heard Giles' small sigh of relief with amusement and Spike hesitantly put his hand on Giles' cheek. 'Did you think I meant never again?'

Giles nodded, utterly bewildered by the feel of the cool palm on his flushed skin. He wanted to reach up and hold the slim wrist, capture the hand in his… but didn't know how to do either of these things, never having been shown how love could be expressed freely without fear of it being abused.

'Can I…? Spike made the excuse of lighting up another cigarette to move his hand. 'Can I stay anyway?' He lifted his bandaged arm fractionally. 'Don't wanna fuck this around too much.'

'Of course!' Giles desperately tried not to sound too eager but knew he'd failed miserably. Spike chuckled once more and began to take off his boots, chucking them noisily to the floor. He slid down and folded his good arm under his head, smoking silently with his other.

Giles, uncertain what to do, said hesitatingly, 'Ill take a shower, I think.'

As there was no reaction to this from Spike, he climbed off the bed and went to the bathroom. He leant on the sink for a moment then looked up at the mirror. It was not the despairing, weary face that had looked back at him only a week or so before. He wasn't sure whose face peered back at him but, whoever this man was, he was someone who appeared to be finding life matching his expectations for once: someone with something invigorating, vibrant, and very, very desirable in his life.

When Giles returned from the bathroom, Spike appeared to be asleep. He was lying face down, his injured arm trailing off the side of the bed. Giles slipped quietly into some pyjama bottoms and climbed in alongside the still figure.

For one awful moment, he wondered if Spike had meant that he wanted to have the bed to himself, that by joining the vampire like this, he was assuming something never meant. When a cool hand reached over and rested lightly on his belly, he only hoped the vampire could not feel the shiver of desire that coursed through his body.

Spike wondered what the watcher would do and kept his hand still and non-threatening. He could feel the tenseness of the muscles. He kept his face turned away, sensing the other's indecision and uncertainty through the small palm-sized area of skin that connected them.

Spike had never met anyone as closed off as he was before, and this intrigued him. He had seen glimpses of the real personality beneath the façade; real feelings had seeped out once or twice, but the human had an impressive self-control. Spike had more though.

How quickly he had learnt to hide the subtle shades of emotion that he had taken into unlife with him. He had locked them away so successfully that he could not now remember where he had put the key. Perhaps he had buried it deep in Angelus' ass when, thrusting into the body he could have loved more than unlife itself, he had seen none of those feelings reciprocated. Perhaps he'd lost it in Drusilla's madness. She had enough emotions for all of them but, like a child that thrusts a jigsaw together in the wrong order, hers were painful to look at, for they jarred, and made no sense. Maybe it was buried deep in his victims' bodies with the railway spikes that had made them scream out their agony to a God that seemed not to care. That sound had forced Spike to lock away a number of emotions that he quickly saw were not compatible with life as a soulless demon.

That he now seemed to have been given a technological key to all these old emotions, that his chip was now bringing to the surface some of the person he had been before unlife had made its unique demands on him, was surprising. His reawakening, his coming back to life, only made the watcher more of a challenge. Spike smiled, his face averted, and began to rub his thumb lightly on the abdominal muscles that had begun to relax slightly in sleep.

Once or twice over the last few days, Spike had felt that the watcher had been on the point of saying something to him about the game. He had seen a look flit across the human's face that engaged him. The watcher had taken to delaying the moment when he rolled away from Spike's body, delaying the time that their bodies lay entangled, sweaty and warm from the sex. Why he had not spoken, interested Spike. So, Spike gave the human this opportunity - this chance to find his own key. He increased the pressure of his thumb on the warm skin, waiting to see what would happen.

Giles turned over, dislodging the hand, and feigned sleep.

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