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Billy woke and felt the strong arms around him still. He sensed that Angel was asleep, although quite why he thought this he could not have said. There was no sound; there was no rise and fall of his chest, no deep, even breathing, but still, he had the distinct impression that Angel was asleep.
He was sleeping in the arms of a monster. He was a prisoner, his life held in the balance, his future being decided without his consent. He was walking through a fog, but everyone else was in the sunshine. He wanted the sunshine. He wanted to know what they knew, understand what they seemed intrinsically to understand. He had memories of people and other lifetimes that had been stolen from him. He wanted them back. He wanted to break down the barriers that held them from him.
Gently, he pushed his hips back into the sleeping figure behind him. It stirred. He repeated the small motion.
'What are you doing?'
Without looking at Angel or replying to him, Billy rolled onto his back, lifted his hips and stripped off his pyjama bottoms. He then made it quite clear what he was doing, for he turned onto his belly and spread his limbs on the bed, lifting one thigh, stretching and opening his hard, flat backside.
'Oh, Will, yessss.'
Billy grinned into the mattress as he felt a weight on him. It hurt at first - a lot - but he closed his eyes and concentrated on the sensation, willing memory to return.
Angel acted blindly. He'd enjoyed one orgasm already, just imagining being inside this body. His sleep had then been filled with memories of being inside it, and now he had woken to find it spread and offered.
He levered himself over the smaller figure, unzipped, and let his cock spring free from the still damp material. Lubricated with pre-ejaculate and spit, he pushed into the dark indentation. He felt the man tense with pain, but knew it would pass soon. William had cried out and tried to stop him, but this initial pain and fear had soon turned to endless desire to be penetrated.
It was so good inside the tight, hot channel. He dipped his hips, pushing his shaft deep into the man's rectum and put one hand up to entwine in the long, sable locks. His hand fluttered useless over the cropped blond hair, and he let it fall.
There was no encouragement at all. The man lay as if lifeless beneath him, just the open, staring eyes giving any sign that he wasn't fucking the dead. He'd never let actual death stop him, so he continued, ignoring something in his heart that wept for this strange sterility. He made up for lack of emotion by the physical pleasure he allowed himself. He dipped and rose, slid deep, pulled out to the very tip, until his ridge settled into the tight hold of the hole's lips, then plunged back in until his curls ground into them, flushing them red.
With a groan of pleasure, Angel released deep into Billy's body, shaking and jerking as the orgasm overtook him. He sighed when he was done and began to lower onto to the enticing back, but the man jerked himself away. Angel's cock flopped out on spent cum as Billy rose, grabbed the sheet and walked stiffly toward the bathroom, wrapping it protectively around his waist.
Angel lowered into the warm spot he'd left then rolled onto his back, the intense pleasure of the orgasm swiftly fading.
He pouted, pursed his lips then frowned. He was a vampire; he didn't expect snuggles; they'd died with the man he'd once killed. He shrugged, rose, zipped up, and went to his own room.
Billy stood in the bathroom with Angel's cum on his palm. It was running out of him, and he rubbed some more between his fingers. He felt he ought to be more moved, shocked- anything but this dead feeling. He'd had a man inside him for the first time, and he felt as dead as the stuff on his hand. There were no memories, though. Not even that hard, insistent probe inside him could reach them.
When Angel jogged into the lobby, Wesley looked up from his newspaper, his expression quickly changing. 'What's wrong?'
Angel suppressed a frown of annoyance and lied. 'Lilah.'
'Ah. You saw her then?'
'And she's a bitch.'
Wesley sighed and folded his paper, straightening. Angel made a space on one of the desks and perched, running his fingers through hair still wet from his shower.
Wesley shook his head and murmured, more to himself than to Angel, 'So, now we find that this situation isn't quite as simple as we first thought when we blundered into the man's life with no idea….'
'Don't freaking patronise me.'
'I was going for treating you like the mentally impaired. Sorry, wasn't the bloody irony pointed enough?'
'You don't understand….'
'No. I don't expect I do. But then you are SO good at sharing your feelings, Angel. Irony clear enough in that one?' He saw Angel's troubled expression and added more softly, 'I do understand passion- despite appearances to the contrary. I understand obsession. So, tell me. What could be worse than what we already knew?'
Before Angel could speak, he looked up and behind Wesley's shoulder. Wesley turned and saw Billy coming down the stairs. He turned back and gave Angel a small, private look, which Angel had the grace to look slightly abashed at. 'I found him,' was all the vampire offered in explanation.
Billy came hesitantly to the desk and, pointedly ignoring Angel, said to Wesley, 'I'm kinda hungry…. I don't suppose….'
Angel rose, looking anywhere but at either of the humans. 'I'll cook something- for you both.' Without waiting to have this offer rejected, he went into the kitchen.
Wesley felt the tension between them and, understanding only part of its cause, but suspecting the rest, nodded for the man to follow.
Angel was busy at the stove; Wesley sat in a chair and pushed another out for Billy. Wesley looked from a resistant back to a deeply troubled expression and said lightly, 'So, is anyone going to tell me what went on with Lilah? Why you're here again?'
Without turning around, Angel said in a low voice, 'You tell him.'
Billy looked up. 'Me?'
Angel shrugged. 'You know enough.'
Wesley looked surprised at the man, who was biting the inside of his cheek nervously. Eventually, Billy said in something of a rush, 'When he gave Spike an amulet thing, it split him into parts. Me and… all the rest, I guess.'
'Bloody hell!' Wesley looked to Angel for confirmation, but got no help from the vampire's back.
'He wants to find this thing now.'
'Yeah. It's got the rest of me trapped in it- Spike.'
'Oh. Again, bloody hell.'
Angel put two plates on the table, one in front of each man, leant back to fetch a mug of blood for himself, and sat between them.
Wesley took a mouthful and spoke around it. 'What are you going to do with it when you find it?'
Angel sipped his blood and then turned to Billy, looking at him for the first time since he had come downstairs. Billy was staring at Angel's hands. Very slowly and carefully, Angel replaced his mug on the table. 'I'm sorry. I should have thought.'
'Billy!' Wesley's voice was commanding, insistent, bringing the man's focus back to him and away from the crimson fluid in Angel's mug. 'Do you feel the link between you and the amulet getting stronger or weaker? Are the dreams getting worse or better? Do things that have happened to you recently make them worse or better?'
Without taking his eyes off Angel's breakfast, Billy replied, 'That's what I've been trying to find out.'
Not particularly liking the pointed implications of this, Angel said brusquely, 'What are you thinking, Wes?'
'That we might be able to track the location of the amulet using Billy- assuming you do want to find it. You do, yes?'
'No!' Billy rose from the table, his food untouched. 'Let him rot in that thing. He's a blood drinking…. He's a monster. Like you!' He gave Angel a bitter accusatory look that seemed to have root in far more than the blood drinking revelation, and turned to leave.
Angel's hand flew out, and he caught Billy's arm. 'Sit down. Please. You need to eat.' He rose quickly and took his own food away from the table, giving the man some space.
Common sense and hunger clearly winning out, Billy sat once more and picked reluctantly at the eggs.
Calmly, Wesley said to neither of them in particular, 'We need to find it to ensure it doesn't fall into the wrong hands. Once we have it, we can decide what to do for the best.
Billy, his eyes downcast on his plate, suddenly asked, 'What are you to him? Who are you?'
'I'm a watcher- well, ex one. I studied the occult, demonology, ancient languages and such….'
'To watch vampires?'
'Well, no, actually to watch those who are destined to kill them: slayers. My slayer… resigned… so I came here to help Angel.'
'Help him do what?'
'Help people. People who can't get help from the authorities, because their problems are anything but ordinary.'
'Well, yes, like you.'
'Yeah, you've all helped me a lot. So… you know stuff about… vampires?'
'I know all about vampires.'
If there was a slight snort from the direction of the sink, Wesley ignored it.
'You have books and things?'
Wesley chuckled. 'Angel, do I have books?'
As if sensing that his involvement in the conversation wouldn't be welcomed by the man, Angel ignored the banter and continued washing up.
'You'd like some books to study?'
Wesley rose. 'I'll sort you some definitive reference works and then perhaps some lighter….' He went out, pleased to have a useful task at last.
An acutely embarrassed silence fell between the other two. Angel returned to the table with two mugs, one of tea, which he pushed over to Billy, and one of coffee, which he sat and took a sip from.
Billy eyes travelled from Angel's hands along his strong wrists and then gradually up to his face.
Angel hissed his breath in and rose. Billy rose too, reaching for him.
'Not in here.'
Angel strode out into the lobby and then jogged up the stairs, sure the man was following.
They didn't even make it to the bedroom but came together in a hard, needy clash of limbs and mouths, hands and fingers.
Turned to the wall of the hallway, his cheek squashed to the faded wallpaper, Billy's jeans were eased down just enough to let Angel in. Angel yanked down his zipper and thrust back into the hot, welcoming body that was still lubricated with his own spent cum.
They both groaned at the same time.
Angel braced his legs, wrapped one arm around Billy's chest and humped hard and fast into the tight channel. He hadn't stood to fuck for over a century, and it was incredibly good: hard, vicious, male fucking with no foreplay needed or wanted.
He came swiftly, but before Billy could separate them again, he reached around and found the man's penis, working him skilfully. Billy tried to free himself, as if this wasn't part of his agenda, but his body betrayed him. He groaned and leant back into Angel's arms, and that small gesture gave the vampire more pleasure than the orgasm that still twitched and swelled his shaft inside the man's body.
When he sensed Billy was about to come, he cupped his other hand under the tip of the hot cock and caught the spurting fluid. Billy didn't even hesitate a fraction of a second before he twisted away, realised Angel was still in him and hard, wrenched off, grabbed at his jeans, and went into the bathroom, slamming the door.
Angel leant his forehead on the wall in lieu of having something warmer and softer and more comforting to touch, then fastened his zipper and went to wash his hands.
When Billy reappeared, there was a stack of books waiting for him on the counter. Not looking at Angel still, he took the top one and frowned at the cover, then glanced at the others, his frown deepening. He then picked them all up and made himself comfortable at one of the desks.
It became very quiet. Billy read about vampires; Wesley researched the amulet and spirit captures in general, and Angel mooched around, brooding.
He didn't make a big deal about watching the human's researching, but every so often - as if totally coincidentally - he slouched across the office: going to the kitchen, going into the lobby, going nowhere in particular. Each time he cast a small surreptitious glance at Billy and the particular book he was on, before moving on without comment.
At one of these small, supposedly unplanned visits to the office, at just the moment that Angel was looking at him, Billy looked over to Wesley and asked, 'Should I put a dead cat in my doorway tonight?'
Wesley glanced up at Angel's expression and then laid down his book and said with a small, amused twitch of his lips, 'Because…?'
'Because he'll have to stop and count every hair on its body before he can come in… so, I'm thinking… no coming in?'
Blushing, coughing slightly in embarrassment, Wesley looked anywhere but at Angel and replied pointedly, 'Merely a myth. Sorry.'
Giving the watcher a grateful, interested look, but hiding his smirk behind his book, Billy went back to researching.
Squaring his shoulders, trying to look like anything other than a blood-sucking creature that squatted in doorways counting hairs on dead cats, Angel went to make himself some coffee.
Billy timed his next interjection to perfection. Angel had just come up from the basement where he'd been working out. He rubbed the back of his neck with a towel and was just about to ask Wesley if he'd found anything useful, when Billy looked at the watcher once more and frowned. 'So, vampires are men that shagged their mothers then?'
Wesley's eyes widened, and he glanced at Angel. Angel dropped the towel onto the desk and strode over, grabbing the book out of the human's hand.
Wesley murmured, 'He has a point in someone's case, no?'
Angel gritted his teeth. 'No. This is all utter crap.' Looking at Billy, he tore the page out of the book, screwed it into a ball and tossed it, without looking, into the wastepaper basket.
Billy licked his lips provocatively. 'So, I'm thinking the ability to turn into a goat is exaggerated, too?'
Angel slammed the book down on the desk and stormed into his office, banging the door.
Billy chuckled, leant back in his chair and crossed his feet casually on the desk. He twitched his shoulders as he felt Wesley's stare.
Wesley shook his head. 'Nothing. I was just thinking that maybe we don't need to actually bring Spike back now.'
Billy lowered his feet to the floor and went back to the books, and the next time Angel emerged - almost as if to test him - the man was silent, and he did not look up from his reading again until Wesley left for the night.
When he heard Wesley packing up, Angel came out and leant on the counter. 'Anything?'
Wesley shook his head. 'I still think my theory is sound… we can use Billy's dreams to somehow track the location of the amulet. I just don't know how yet.'
'And when we find it?'
Angel studied his nails for a moment.
Wesley's eyebrow quirked up. 'I see. Well, destroying it or setting him free- either way, I'm still totally in the dark.'
'Keep at it?'
Wesley nodded and put a couple more books into his bag. 'Will you two be…. I think I'll just go. See you tomorrow.'
Angel nodded, distracted. Wesley sighed and left.
Angel watched the lowered head, not attempting to make this study particularly covert now.
Billy knew he was being watched and eventually lifted his eyes to Angel, giving him a quick glance through lowered lids. Then he leant back in his chair and regarded him frankly, Angel leaning back against the counter, returning the look with equal candour.
'Did you find what you were looking for?'
Billy blinked, well aware that Angel wasn't talking about the research he'd been doing with the books. A swift, sharp stab of something tingled down his spine at the memory of Angel deep inside in his body. He rose uncertainly.
Angel took a step forward, equally uncertain.
Billy looked down and murmured, 'Jog my memory again.'
Angel seized him and bent him back over the desk. Books cascaded to the floor; those that survived, Angel swept after them. He ripped the front of Billy's pants open, jerking them down to his thighs. Billy made to turn over, but Angel shook his head and lifted the man's thighs, tearing the pants off one foot in frustration so he could spread Billy wide.
He kept the man's gaze for a moment then lowered his eyes. The soft grunt of pleasure that escaped him, made Billy lower his head to the desk and stretch his arms up, seeking for the edge. He didn't look when he heard a zipper, or when he felt rough fingers playing with him.
Angel worked the edges of Billy's hole with a delight he'd forced himself to forget over the long decades he'd been without this pleasure. He spat on his fingers and pressed them to the dark ring, easing the tip of one inside and running it around. He felt the man tense but knew it would not be from dislike.
When he was ready, he eased his hips forward and let the tip of his cock seek out the waiting hole. It wavered over the warm flesh, then seated in the indentation. Angel helped it in, leaning forward into the man, holding his ankles and spreading him.
When he was in, he cupped Billy under his cheeks, lifting him higher so he could push in to his root. He closed his eyes and trailed his mind over his whole cock, from exposed head to where it rose hard and sure from its nest of dark curls. He imagined moving, ran his mind over it like a fist, drawing out the anticipation, so that when he finally began the first withdrawal, the pleasure was so exquisite he let out a long, low moan of satisfaction. At the moan, the man released one hand from its hold on the desk and sought blindly for Angel's wrist, digging his fingers in, drawing blood. Angel opened his eyes to watch the small red trails, then in a swift move, dislodged the hand, catching the fingers and entwining them with his.
Before the man could protest, he pushed back in, squeezing the fingers at the same time. Billy arched off the desk and crossed his ankles behind Angel's neck.
The next time Angel withdrew, Billy squeezed Angel's fingers and moaned. Suddenly, Angel leant on him hard, jerking his hips in a rapid staccato of fucking. He ripped out of Billy's hold and pushed the man's thighs down hard, holding them as he almost climbed onto the supine body, punching himself deep into the hot tightness.
Angel began to pant, ragged breaths that he couldn't stop.
Just before he came, he put a hand under Billy's neck and heaved him up, hugging him close, then he released a furious shuddering, which flooded the man with his seed. As he came, he sought Billy out, finding a hard, wet erection. One touch and his hand was soaked, and the man cried out, the sound muffled into Angel's broad chest. Before he could stop himself, Angel brought his hand to his lips and licked Billy's cum off his fingers.
A strong push put Angel back on his feet, and his cock rushed out of Billy with an audible sucking sound. The man lowered his legs with difficulty and stood, one hand on the edge of the desk, knuckles white with the effort to stand without shaking. Angel let his hand drop to his side and offered no assistance. With a small blink, he zipped his pants. 'Jogged?'
Billy slapped him hard then hesitated, as if the possible consequences of this had just occurred to him. When he saw no reaction from Angel, he bent to pull up his pants, the hand he'd hit the vampire with clearly hurting him.
'This isn't what I want, Billy. Remember that.'
'Don't speak to me.'
'I've just come inside your arse. Kinda speaks for itself?'
Billy spun with everything he had and doubled punched Angel into the wall. 'Fuck off, Angel.'
To his surprise, Angel began to laugh. He touched a fingertip to his bleeding lip and nodded. 'And here we go again. Hello, Spike.'
Billy straightened, rubbing his split knuckles. He seemed about to say something, but clenched his jaw and went stiffly toward the stairs instead.
Angel showered slowly, a depression of spirits taking away his usual energy. He turned and twisted under the hot water, its usual revitalising powers failing completely. With a sigh, he climbed out and dried himself. Billy was sitting on the edge of the bed when Angel walked past to go to his own room. His head was hung down, and he was staring at his swollen hand. Angel went past, fetched an ice bag and returned, walking unconcerned into the man's room. He crouched down in front of him and handed him the ice.
Billy looked up. 'Your lip is swollen, too.'
'I survived hundreds of years in hell. One split lip, not really done in anger, isn't going to kill me off.'
Billy swallowed. Angel rose to his feet. 'Sleep well.' Angel could see that they both feared this would not be the case, and instead of trying to sleep, Angel picked a couple of books from his own extensive collection on the occult and sat up in bed, researching the kind of power that could keep someone like Spike contained for any length of time.
Inevitably, the quiet study time only lasted for a few hours. When he heard the first low moan, he rose and went next door. The dream had been a particularly short, sharp one, and the man sat in the bed, rubbing his temples.
When he saw Angel's dark presence in the doorway, he put one hand over his eyes briefly, but his other slid down to the space next to him.
Silently, knowing he was hated as much as he was wanted, Angel slid in alongside him. Billy lay back down and curled into a tight ball. Angel sighed and put a hand on his shoulder. 'You can't sleep like that.'
As if admitting the truth of this, Billy relaxed fractionally, and when Angel turned on his side, facing him, he pushed back the merest fraction against Angel's solid, comforting presence.
Angel smiled inwardly but gave one of his flawless impressions of being dead, and the man seemed to find this small touch all he needed to return to sleep.
Angel slept fitfully, waking every so often to the irresistible feel of the warm man sleeping alongside him.
At one point, he was in a very light sleep, when he heard the man say distinctly, 'Oh, bollocks.'
Angel put a hand on the man's shoulder and murmured something reassuring, even though he knew his touch and voice were unwelcome.
'Uh huh. Poofter?'
Angel's eyes snapped open, and he sat up. Billy was asleep, his face slack in sleep, his breathing deep and even. Angel swallowed, then cursed when the lips opened and said just as distinctly, 'Angel?'
He swallowed again and said very quietly, 'Spike?'
'Bloody sodding bollocks! I'm stuck in some fucking twilight zone sodding episode, and who's the first bleedin' person I hear? Bloody you!'
Shutting down all emotion, concentrating on the task in hand, Angel managed to say, 'Where are you?' but knew his voice sounded ragged and strung out.
'Oh, bloody hell! That's what I was gonna ask you! I die, saving the bloody world, and what do I get for my pains? Shafted, that's what! You'd think some fucker would at least 'ave 'ad the courtesy to bloody turn me off or something!'
'What? What! You poncy sodding twat! Don't you….'
'Spike! Spike! Shut up. You need to shut up and think! Where are you? How are you speaking to me?'
'I don't know where I am! Okay! I don't know! It's all dark, and I'm… bloody hell… I'm floating. There! Satisfied! I've lived over a hundred years, saved the bleedin' world and the achieved the great reward of bloody floating!'
'But you're talking to me.'
'Well, yeah, okay. I'm in someone's brain, I think…. Or in his bloody balls for all I know. I get these… windows… when I can get through to the bugger, but he don't seem to hear me…. I've been sodding shouting at him for sodding ever! And, huh, where are you then? How come you're hearing this fucker?'
'Well, yeah. Thought I was kinda dead and in some fucking weird heaven. You dead too then? Go on, make my day.'
'No, I'm in bed, in L.A.'
'Oh! That's bloody rich! You fob me off with a defective bloody amulet, and you go back to bloody bed! Hey… is Buffy there?'
'Huh, cus you know… I saw you two… all with the smoochies….'
'Spike. I'll repeat. Fucking shut up…! Tell me more about where you think you are. Can you hear anything- other than me? Spike? Spike?'
The man's eyes stared back at Angel, worried, confused. Angel blinked, climbed out, and went back to his room, feeling more in need of receiving some comfort than giving it.
He lay awake the rest of the night, once or twice trying to send his thoughts to Spike, trying to use the old blood link, but it was as dead as the times he'd tried it after news had come from Sunnydale of Spike's death.
With a frown, Angel glanced at the telephone and then picked it up, punching in a memorised number.
A very sleep voice replied, 'Yes?'
A much less sleepy voice said sharply, 'Angel! Angel, we agreed….'
'This is important.'
'Important enough to…?'
'Yes. After the Hellmouth collapsed, what did you all do? I mean, I know broadly;
you've told me where you all are and what you are doing, but specifically- in
the first few hours. Who went where?'
'Angel! How can you call me with this after…?'
'Please, Buffy, this is very important. To me.'
'We split up. I don't know exactly. I'm sorry. There were injuries. Dawn and I went to the hospital with Xander and Andrew. Willow joined us there later. I didn't see Giles until much later.'
'Give me Giles's number.'
'He asked me not to.'
'Not you specifically- anyone from the… old days.'
'Give it to me, Buffy.'
'No. Look, Angel….'
'You broke his face, Buffy. You punched him so hard you broke a bone in his face, and all he wanted was to help you.'
'What! Who? It wasn't like that. How did you know…?'
'Tell me Giles's number.'
Angel wrote it on his wrist as she spoke, then looked at the handset and said in a tone he was well aware was enigmatic, 'I'm sorry I called, Buffy.'
He hung up and stared blankly into the darkness for some hours, until with a curse, he picked up the telephone once more and rang the number on his wrist.
The voice that answered was not sleepy, weary maybe, but not sleepy. 'Hello.'
Angel listened to the silence.
'Who are you? What do you want?'
Angel thought about Spike burning up alone, now trapped in the amulet.
When another eon of silence had passed, the Englishman replaced the handset.
Angel continued staring into the darkness for the rest of the night, until the soft rays of dawn stroked down the outside of his thick drapes. Then he rose, showered, and went downstairs to wait for Wesley.
To Chapter 7
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