The vampires took a step back. Giles took off his glasses and put a hand over his face. It was so bright in the bathroom, and there was nowhere to go, nowhere to hide.
Suddenly, Spike took hold of the younger vampire and shoved him out of the door. 'Fuck off to the bar, here.' He pushed some money in his hand then slammed the door on him.
He turned back to Giles. He'd wanted to explore new emotions, but he hadn't wanted to explore this. Watching a human man cry made him feel things that physically hurt. Giles tried to gather his dignity and pushed past Spike and out into the dark corridor. He panicked for a moment, unable to get his bearings, then made for the exit, still unable to control the sobbing that tore him in half, and made him need to vomit once more.
The fresh air helped, and he leant for a moment on a dumpster, hiccupping slightly as he tried to calm the storm. He felt a hand on his shoulder but shook it off. He began to walk fast towards home but knew that Spike kept up effortlessly with him.
'They were just kids I met tonight, Giles.'
'He was dressed like you.'
Spike paused. 'Okay, I met them a few nights ago. Same difference.'
'You slept with him.'
'Okay, yes, I did. I slept with them both. So what?'
Giles whirled on him. 'I didn't really believe it! You did fuck him!'
'No, I didn't. I told you the truth the first time. See, you didn't really think I did. That's all that matters.'
'What? What the fuck are you playing here, Spike?'
'I wanted to see if you'd be jealous.'
'Well, you saw. I was. Am.'
'Why? Why is that good, for God's sake? Just where are we now?'
'I came back, didn't I? I told you I was gonna hurt you, and I did. Look at you! I made you cry.' Spike paused in wonder. 'Jeez, I actually made you cry.'
Giles began to walk again, but Spike held his sleeve. He resisted until the vampire said quietly, 'Please.'
Giles looked desperately around, spotted a small café and, without looking behind to see if Spike was following him, went in.
He ordered tea and sat waiting for it while Spike toyed with the menu as if deciding what to have.
At last, Giles looked up and said. 'Did you sleep with him?'
'That's good it's good. Good is good.'
'Sounding like Xander Harris suddenly, isn't. Please don't.'
Something had passed now; they both felt it. Something like normality returned to Giles' heart. He noticed the music in the café, and it did not drive him to despair. When his tea arrived, it did not make him feel sick; it tasted just like tea always did in this foreign country.
Spike leant back in his seat. 'I didn't like hurting you.'
'You're a vampire, Spike; I don't believe that.'
'Not me, you pillock, the other me. He didn't like hurting you really. He was only doing it cus you hurt him.'
'Not all that grown-up after all then?'
'Maybe, maybe. Maybe he's just got a fundamental character flaw.'
'Well suited role then, Spike.'
Spike chuckled. 'Didn't think you'd take it that hard, watcher. What did it feel like?'
'I'm not sure I want to talk about it.'
'Yes, you do.'
'It was frightening. I've faced some truly terrifying things in my life, but that was something I would rather not go through again.'
Spike nodded, clearly pleased, and began to unwrap and eat the sugar lumps on the table. Giles watched in revolted fascination for a while then shook himself and said softly, 'So what now?'
Spike didn't look up but said complacently, 'Oh, yeah. Now I'm dying.'
'What?' He swiftly moderated his voice but knew several people were glancing at them strangely. 'What do you mean?'
'It's how it always ends. I've gotta die, an' you spend the rest of your life mourning me an' realising what you nearly had.'
'No. I don't want to do this.'
'But you should see my impression of a dead body, Giles. I've got it down pat.'
'Shut up. I'm not listening to this.'
'Oh come on…. I've been looking forward to me death scene, cus I never got it right the first time: too messy. And hey… you could have a little bit of fun with the dead body like, 'fore you call the….'
'Oh God! Shut up!'
'What! You've been fucking me for a month now, an' I'm dead.'
Giles paused. 'Is that how you see yourself, Spike?'
It was Spike's turn to pause; he'd wanted Giles to examine his own thoughts on the subject, not interrogate his. He replied carefully, 'I think that's what you think sometimes when you look at me.'
Giles leant over the table and placed a hand on his cheek. 'If I ever did, then I can't even remember thinking that now.'
Spike almost blushed. He looked down, flustered, and began to shred the tiny pieces of paper he'd taken off the sugar. Giles removed the hand from Spike's face but put it over his ever-restless hands for a moment. 'Spike?'
'What, wanker?' Giles' bowels flooded with desire at the uncertain, hesitant tone in Spike's voice.
'Is any of this real? Has any of this been real? I mean….'
Spike looked up and caught his gaze. 'What do you think?'
'I - I don't have enough experience of any of this to know what I think. But I think that knowing that for the first time is good, yes?'
Spike chuckled and leant back contentedly once more. 'It's very good, yeah. Now, 'bout me dying. I was goin' for the big C or something… what'd'ya reckon?'
Giles took his glasses off and pinched the bridge of his nose wearily. 'And we have to do this because?'
'Cus… I want a cool death scene for one… an' you've gotta realise that what you've been feeling up to now - jealousy? fear? hate? - they're all nothing to the power of regret. You've gotta regret me, mate; it's the only way. And if you add that you do already, I'll 'it you, chip or no.'
How could emotions swing like this? Giles felt buoyant: the soft, intimate, teasing tone, making him want to lean over the table and kiss the grinning vampire. The foot that had begun to push up his skin made him…. 'Ow.'
'Your boot is scuffing up all the hairs on my leg. Desist.'
'God, you are hard work, Giles, sometimes. Anyone ever tell you that?'
'Actually, yes; you may have overheard her?'
They both laughed together suddenly, and Giles had the odd thought that this moment - this shared laughter - was better than all the orgasms they'd had together.
He thought back to what Spike had said and shook his head. 'When did you get so smart about emotions, Spike? I was jealous; I was very afraid and, God, I hated you so much.'
Spike frowned slightly. 'Smart?'
'You seem so different to other vampires. They are… well, soulless, I suppose.'
'And I'm not?'
'Are you going to get all huffy and storm out if I say that you aren't?'
'Rather be proving your point if I did, then, wouldn't I?'
'Spike?' Giles toed the vampire's leg gently with his foot. 'Spike?'
'I - It's like coming back to life, Giles. It's scary. When I saw you… back there…. Shit, I've watched thousands of men cry, ya know? Made them cry - hard for 'em not to when they've a two-foot stake up their arses, I guess. An' it were all meaningless. I could 'ave been watching them piss for all the impression it made on me.'
Giles fought inherent revulsion and took the recitation of this story in the sharing spirit the vampire clearly intended. 'What do you feel when you think about it now?'
Spike looked up, his blue eyes so wide and clear that Giles found it hard to believe he had ever looked upon such cruelty with equanimity.
'Nothin'. I don't feel nothin'. It's not what I'm trying to say. The chip don't make me feel bad cus of the past but bad now. I felt….' He trailed off, and his eyes widened even more. 'I just said "I felt". Fuck. But I did. I felt like shit when you cried, mate.'
'Angel does feel like that about his past. Imagine what that would be like.'
There were both silent for a while, remembering Angel in their own individual ways, until Spike suddenly said, 'Fucking hope I never get a soul. Want to feel things now but don't want all that baggage. What I did in the past was the past, yeah? I was different then.'
Giles nodded but said with some confidence, 'You'd cope. You always do, Spike; you're a survivor.'
Spike brightened. 'Not gonna survive the big C though, am I?'
'Don't. It's not a joke.'
'Course it is. Nothin' in this world that ain't funny somehow, Giles. An' if you think different, you've been livin' in this po-faced, up-tight, PC, we've-gotta-be-guilty-for-slavery-for-the-rest-of-our-lives country too long.'
Giles raised an eyebrow at him. 'I hope you don't express those sentiments in public too often.'
Spike grinned. 'Nah. Private like, just between the two of us.'
'Paedophilia. Something that is not funny. Ever.'
'Huh, so, you ain't heard the joke about the six year old….'
'Shut up. Now. So… cancer?'
Spike chuckled and replaced his boot on Giles' shin, ignoring the pointed look. 'Maybe something quicker? Short and shocking with lots of theatrical coughing.'
'And where does all this take place, may I ask? Dying in that crypt doesn't sound at all appealing.'
'Oh, that's the best bit. You find me an' take me to your place. I'm gonna die in your bed.'
'Ah. In that case….' He trailed off, glanced pointedly to his crotch, and added, 'Make it a slow death, Spike.'
Spike spluttered and then laughed out loud. 'See! You're there! Jeez, mate, this illness is gonna be fun. Come on.' He hauled Giles to his feet and dragged him out of the café.
They were a little drunk all the way back. Giles' depression had vanished too quickly, and now he felt mildly hysterical. He just found everything funny, and Spike responded to this mood, playing up to his audience. By the time they reached the bedroom, they were both too horny to even bother with clothes. Braced against the wall, they brought each other off to explosive orgasms until clothes were stained, cocks soft, and laughter silenced by the power of physical sensation.
Giles fell panting to the bed, but Spike began to pace, still too wound up to relax. He began to shed his clothes, and Giles watched the erotic show from the bed, wishing he had vampire stamina. Spike went downstairs, helped himself to some bottles of wine and brought them back to the room. As Giles opened them, he wandered over to the small CD player to examine the music choice. He chucked the classical ones to the floor and then paused, surprised. He held one up and waved it at Giles questioningly. Giles shrugged. Spike opened the box and carefully put the disc on, then, as the first strains of 'Alive and Kickin'' eased out, he tipped his head back and closed his eyes to the sublime moment. Giles watched him with avid fascination and desire. Although he could neither muster nor control most of the emotions that this vampire had released, he recognised this one: obsession. He had become obsessed with Spike but now he only revelled in that feeling.
Eventually, Spike tore himself away from Simple Minds and crawled onto the bed. 'I'd not 'ave thought it of you, watcher.'
Giles chuckled. 'You hardly know me, Spike. I had a real life before all this. Before I became… passive.'
'And, anyway, this was the music of my twenties. I don't think you ever lose the love of the music you liked then, do you?'
Spike began to laugh and actually found it hard to stop. Whenever he tired, he caught Giles' expression and began again. Eventually, he made a supreme effort and only said, 'I did. Tra La La, Hey Nonny Nonny' rather pales when you've become a punk, yeah?'
Giles frowned. 'I will never remember how old you really are. Why can't you have some small bit of real age somewhere, giving it away?'
'A small portrait, maybe?'
Giles smiled, pleased. He'd never risked a real conversation since he'd come to America, and that Spike not only understood the allusion, he was clearly enjoying himself too, pleased Giles no end.
He lay back on the bed and sipped at the wine, bewildered by the rapid changes of emotion this room had seen recently. As Spike's hands began to undress him, he tried to imprint the moment on his mind: the wine, the conversation, the music, the anticipation of the sex, the throbbing from the recent orgasm - everything in this room at this moment. 'This is what you described, Spike.'
'It didn't work with her.'
'How could it?'
Giles looked at him. 'What do you mean?'
Spike paused, clearly debating his answer then shrugged and plunged in regardless. 'Well, you being gay an' all. Not likely to….'
'I am not gay.' The voice was chilling and very distinct.
Spike paused in his undressing of the human, possibly thinking this rather tactless given the conversation. 'Thought you might say that.'
'Because it's true.'
''S not a problem, pet, if you are. Don't bother me like. Fact, kinda handy really.'
'I repeat. I am not gay. I do not want to sleep with….' He trailed off, clearly thinking something through. 'I don't. I actually don't. So, that's a bit of a puzzle, isn't it? Because I most definitely want to sleep with you.' He glanced down at Spike's prominent erection. 'And you are most definitely passing yourself off as a man.'
Spike chuckled. 'It's one of me best impressions, luv. Along with dead body and rock star.'
Giles was still deep in thought. Spike tried to be helpful. 'Think about Harris! There ya go…. Now, it's like one of those tests in the bloody bints' magazines. When you think about Xander Harris, do you: a… heave, b… leak, or c… reach for….'
'Shut up, Spike. Did I tell you that no one finds you amusing?'
'You go to the bathroom and see a bloke peeing next to you, do you: a… turn away politely, b… cop a feel, or c….'
'One word more out of you on the subject and I'll… prove that I'm not.' He began to re-button his trousers.
'Okay. Not a peep. You're not. I'm just joshing you as usual, human. So, how 'bout a fuck then? Love doin' it to this music. Come on….' He pushed his hand through an opening in Giles' shirt and caressed the smooth chest. Giles groaned and turned to him, covered him, swelling to the feel of the naked body beneath him: the music, candlelight, and wine, making him feel heady and bold. He opened Spike's legs and began to play with his entrance: pressing it and tickling over it. Spike peered at him through lowered lids and said with a serious voice, 'That's right, Giles, fuck me hard and prove you ain't gay.'
Giles reacted instinctively and slapped at his raised leg, hitting just where the large thigh muscle stretched up to one hard buttock. Spike gasped, and the twitch of his cock was not missed by either of them. Huskily, Spike murmured, 'Again.'
Giles did it again, the mark of his hand flaring red on the pale skin. The sound of the slap was sublime; it cracked like a whip, sliced through the smooth music and diffused light. Spike flipped over and stuck his backside in the air a little. 'Again, harder.'
Giles knelt up so he could get the full force of the swing into the smack. 'You made me cry.' Smack - it felt so good. 'You deserve this.' Again, a resounding crack of skin striking skin, accompanied by a groan from Spike. 'You bit me!' That thought got a particularly hard blow. 'Bloody hell! You spat on me!' He hit so hard, he felt a small muscle pull in his arm, a flare of pain stab in his elbow, and he sat back, chuckling at his own weakness.
Spike turned around, his eyes dilated, his shaft urgent. Giles hissed slightly, and Spike hesitatingly knelt up and looked pointedly down at his erection. Giles followed his gaze and felt his mouth water at the unexpected certainty that he would taste a man's cock for the first time.
Spike guided him down, placed his hands to the soft, grey-brown hair and pushed lightly, encouragingly. Giles pushed Spike backwards and then rose over him, groaning at the sight that awaited him. Before he plummeted his mouth to that glistening shaft, he looked unfocusedly at Spike. 'Just tell me where we are now. Is this part of the game? Is this real? I'm lost, Spike.'
Spike didn't reply for a moment but closed his eyes, his arm thrown over as if he needed even less light than the candles gave out. 'It'll be the game tomorrow, yeah?'
''So… what is….'
'This is them, too. See? They get one night before it all goes to shit again….'
'Yeah.' Spike smiled. 'We know we love each other, an' we're both sorry for being so 'orrible to each other.'
'So - and I am genuinely puzzled here, Spike - why do we need to go on with this? If we love each other, let's just stop here. Please?'
'Nah.' If Spike was thinking about living in his crypt as opposed to lying in Giles' bed, feigning illness and being waited on hand and foot, he didn't let on. 'We're not there yet, trust me on this. Now… you gonna lie there like a cock-tease, or you gonna….'
'Can I just say, if you ever use that, or similar expressions, ever again, I shall revert to the damp, squidgy variety of this activity.'
Spike pouted but continued the pressure on Giles' neck. Smiling, the human placed a tongue just to the very tip. Spike hissed and tensed. Giles looked up at him, amazed. That was genuine. Whatever had gone between them before, that was genuine. Spike almost blushed for the second time that night and shrugged slightly. 'I really, really like that an' Dru never would, ya know?'
'Why didn't you tell me before?'
'Err, and what?'
'Spike! If you'd said, I'd have… I'd have….' He trailed off uncertainly.
Spike grinned. 'Yeah, you've changed a bit, Giles. You may do it now for me but then? Nah. Don't think so.'
Giles continued to frown at him for a moment. 'There is nothing I want to do more.'
Spike twitched up his eyebrow. 'My lucky day then, ain't it?'
'Show me? Show me how?'
'Oh. Yeah.' Spike guided him back down. 'Lick across there again; I like that… oh! Fuck!' Spike rose slightly off the bed at the warm rasp across the sensitive tissue of his cockhead, and Giles chuckled. Spike slapped lightly at him. 'Don't laugh; just open wide and take it all in. Bloody hell! Yes! Flick your tongue over the top. Shit! Oh, Fuck! Ahhh.'
Giles didn't need any more instruction; he was in tune with Spike's groaning. He took his rhythm from the soft expletives. He took encouragement from the urgency of the fingers digging into his scalp.
After what seemed like an age, there was just him with this smooth cool column in his mouth. He felt Spike trying to pull him off. He resisted until Spike hissed softly, 'I'm gonna cum, human, you'd better….'
Giles hesitated but gave a particularly deep, hard pull on the shaft with his rigid lips instead. Spike gasped and emptied himself noisily into Giles' mouth. It was odd. Giles couldn't deny that. It tasted like his smelt: musky, sexy… and utterly illicit. It was cold; it kept coming; it made him want more.
The penis softened in his mouth, and even this delighted him, but Spike chuckled and lifted him off. They were inches away, Giles' mouth coated with Spike's sperm - it seemed the most natural thing in the world. Giles leant forward and caught the back of Spike's head. Spike held back for a second but then allowed his lips to be touched, but almost before Giles could register the feel or begin to enjoy the sensation, the vampire reared away and buried his face, wrapping his arms around his knees in a protective embrace.
Giles knelt back thoughtfully for a moment then eased his way behind Spike, spreading his legs either side of the huddled vampire. Spike's back was curled and stretched, each disc of his spine visible. Giles ran one finger lightly down from the hairline to the top of the buttocks, half expecting Spike to arch back at the sensation. He didn't. The vampire remained closed off. Giles put a hand to each shoulder and began a light massage, wondering at the strength in the muscles. He worked each hand down Spike's back in turn, in a soft, sensuous kneading and stretching. He felt some of the tenseness go and eventually propped his chin onto Spike's shoulder, wrapped his arm around the huddled form, and murmured softly, 'What's wrong? Tell me.'
Spike shook his head fractionally. Giles turned his face right into the ear and repeated, 'Tell me.' Before he felt the refusal once more, he added, 'Not you, not me, remember? Just them.'
He heard a slight mumble and, encouraged, just waited. Finally, Spike turned his head to one side and laid his cheek on his folded arms. ''S all right for you, human. You don't know shit 'bout emotions, but least you've got other humans to watch and copy. You've overtaken me now, and I'm lost.'
Giles began to run his hands through Spike's hair, letting the blond strands slip though his fingers. 'It was just a kiss.'
'Yeah. Maybe for you.'
'That's not what I meant. Compared to what we've done…. I mean, why now? Why does this affect you so much?'
Spike shivered slightly, and Giles instinctively embraced him a little tighter, and surprisingly, Spike responded to the tightening of the muscles around him, leaning into the warm arms. 'You can't know what it's like, Giles. The absence of feeling all those years…. 'K, I had demon feelings - admit that - but not like this. They didn't make me feel….'
'Maybe. It's just another emotion I don't understand. I thought I had you where I wanted you, but you've overtaken me.'
'And is that so bad?'
'Well, no, 'cept you are particularly sad.'
Giles chuckled and felt the amusement was reciprocated, if not the actual laugh. 'Don't be too hard on yourself. You're the first vampire ever to be chipped and escape - as far as we know. You're the first vampire perhaps to go through this… humanising?'
'I need to do something evil.'
'Can't help you there.'
'Nah. I'll kill something later.'
Spike rubbed the heel of his hand over his eyes and lifted his head. Giles sighed and lay back and, somehow, Spike ended up lying in his embrace, quiet and still. After a few moments, Giles said softly, 'Do you really think I'm… better?'
'Maybe. Crying was impressive.'
'If slightly embarrassing.'
'There you go, see? You've gotta stop thinking like that. Bet you never cried as a kiddie.'
'No, I would never have been allowed.'
Spike was quiet for a while, then offered sadly, 'Me neither.'
Giles peered down at the blond head thoughtfully. 'Do you remember much of your time before you… you know….'
'You can say it, human. 'Fore I got murdered. And no. I don't. And if I do, then I ain't gonna talk 'bout it.'
'Why not? I should think it would all seem such a long time ago.'
'Shows what you know then. When you become… when you…. When I became, I kind of stood still in me mind, ya know? And we don't lose our memories like you do, I guess. So it's all as if it happened yesterday. All of it.'
'Oh. I'm sorry. It must be painful to think about.'
'I never do.'
'You do though.'
'You think 'bout the past a lot - it informs you.'
Giles was silenced for a while but eventually said hesitantly, 'I don't think I….'
'You have it all 'ere….' Spike raised one lazy arm and tapped at the side of his head. 'Locked in the past.'
'That's not true. I…. This is my life now.'
'What's in it rather than the place, I think.'
Spike chuckled. 'And who would that be?'
'Are you fishing?' Giles bent his head down and nuzzled slightly into Spike's hair, being careful not to actually kiss him. 'It's rather obvious, isn't it?'
He felt Spike press closer, paused, and added gleefully, 'Buffy, Willow… Xander, of course, Anya….'
Unable to actually hurt him, Spike just pointedly turned over and feigned sleep. Giles chuckled again and just placed a hand to the small of Spike's back, falling into a deep, satisfying sleep - the first he'd had for many, many nights.