paced the corridors of the hotel. He was on edge, restless and frustrated. Conversations
with Buffy tended to do that to him. Especially now; now he had discovered that
she was not whole, not complete and perhaps not even fully human.
Could he risk trying again with her? Would it work? If she was not human, she could not give him a moment of happiness when he came in her soft, slim body. He would be safe to love her.
But there were other considerations, too. She was still mortal. They would have a brief time together before he had to lose her again. Could he face that?
And if he had to be honest, could he face Buffy at forty, or fifty or ninety?
Then there was what she needed. Wouldn't she want a normal life? Going out into the sunshine, for example.
As Angel thought one further sad point he kicked a conveniently discarded mattress in the corridor. If he did try again, what the hell would they talk about this time? All he remembered were the silences as he struggled to find something to discuss with a sixteen- year-old girl.
'How's school' had paled as an opener after a while.
So, all these thoughts ran through Angel's mind that night. But the thing driving him the most? Not this rational debating of the pros and cons of picking up his relationship with Buffy. Driving him was an urgent, painful erection that blotted out most of his rational mind. So although he thought about her mortality and her general vacuousness, he did not give them to much weight in the argument.
By the morning he had decided to go to Sunnydale and speak to her, assess her mood and see if there was any chance of a future for them, albeit a short one in his terms.
As soon as the sun set he drove to Sunnydale and not finding anyone at home, drove to the Magic Shop.
When he arrived he found her training with Giles.
She was tense and defensive with him from the start, but he made an attempt to explain why he had come. Giles wisely decided to leave them to themselves and wandered back to the main shop to make himself a cup of tea. He was not pleased to find Spike rummaging around behind the till.
'May I ask what you think you are doing?'
'Yes, you may.'
'You haven't asked yet.'
'Stop playing games, Spike. What do you want?'
'Can't find me favourite lighter; thought I might have left it here.'
'Likely reason. Come away from there, please. When Angel's finished you can…'
'Oh, yes, Angel's come to see Buffy. They're in the back.'
'Angel's come to see Buffy?'
'Yes, I think that is what I just said.'
Spike pushed past Giles and went towards the back room. He couldn't have rightly said exactly what he was worried about and couldn't explain the thought going through his mind "either way I'm stuffed" and pushed open the door.
Angel and Buffy were embracing, her small blond head against his broad chest.
Spike saw red and couldn't decide which one to accuse first.
'Let 'er go, poof.'
'Spike, go away. ' Buffy pulled away from Angel, embarrassed.
'Bugger if I will.'
Angel turned to face Spike and dug his hands deeply into his pockets. 'What do you want, Spike? There is nothing for you, here.'
'Well, that's where you are wrong, poof. I'd have thought you could smell me on her.' Spike lit a cigarette, glad Giles was not here to note his earlier lie, and tried to stop his hands from shaking.
'Don't flatter yourself, Spike. You've just been a substitute. Well, the real thing's back now, so step out of the way.' Buffy put her hand on Angel's arm.
Spike felt tears prick at the corners of his eyes, as these words hurt him more than any of her weapons ever could.
Angel look confusedly between the two of them then spoke to Buffy. 'What do you mean?'
Keeping eye contact with Spike, Buffy said, 'He thinks he's in love with me and, well, he's been convenient, but now…' she turned to Angel smiling.
Angel was not smiling. He was looking at Spike's weak attempt to cover his feelings by grinding an unsmoked cigarette into the training room floor.
'Shut up, you fucking poof. Shut up.' He left, slamming the door behind him.
Buffy went back into the shop to see if he had really gone and Angel followed, thoughtfully. Willow, Tara and Xander had arrived and were chatting around the table. They looked up in surprise at Angel's presence. As usual, he seemed broody and depressed and they wondered for the thousandth time what Buffy saw in him. Well, Willow and Tara did, Xander could entirely understand why she fell for that beautiful face, mysterious, dark personality... and now he was sounding like a complete poof and he'd shut up.
Dawn arrived and flung her school bags into a corner and found herself being introduced to Angel. 'The Angel'. She was suitably impressed and sat looking admiringly at him from her favourite perch on the stairs.
Buffy and Angel had just decided to go somewhere more private, when the door suddenly burst open and Spike rushed in, smashed into Angel, flattened him into the floor and raised a stake to plunge it into his heart.
Everyone froze…metaphorically at first, and then for real as a bag of small pink flowers at Buffy's house accidentally caught fire. It was fortunate the house did not burn down, but those flames did ignite a powerful conflagration in the hearts of some of those trapped in their magic.
Angel was the first to wake up. He lay still, trying to get his bearings. Before he had worked out where he was he realised, with a jolt of fear, that he didn't know who he was. So, lots of questions: who was he? where was he? and, perhaps just as intriguing, who was lying asleep on him?
He lifted his head and saw a bleached-blond, young man on him, his arms up, as if in an embrace. Angel put his head back down and groaned. The groan woke Spike; he stirred, rubbing his face against Angel's shirt. He stretched, opened his eyes and lay staring for a moment at this broad, unusual pillow.
Realisation came to him, too, and he lifted his head and looked at Angel. 'Who the fuck are you, and why are you lying under me?'
Angel smiled. 'I was going to ask you that same thing, and I think it's you lying on me.'
Spike gave a cheeky grin, wiggled his eyebrow and rolled off Angel. He sat up and looked around. 'Hey, look, other people.'
Angel sat up, too. 'Wake them up.'
They went around the room, bringing the others back to consciousness. Everyone was talking at once. Spike wandered back to where Angel was sitting on the stairs, kicked a broken chair leg out of the way and sat down beside him.
They smiled at each other again.
Suddenly, Giles said, 'Everyone check their pockets, please, for a driving licence or some form of identification.'
Everyone rummaged. Angel pulled out his card that read 'Angel Investigations' and showed it to Spike.
'Hey, look, I'm a detective.'
Spike took the card. 'Or maybe some kind of new-age psychic.'
'Maybe you investigate angels?'
'Oh.' Angel looked disappointed. 'What about you?'
Spike held up the miscellaneous and dubious selection of junk he'd found in his pocket. 'Nothing here.'
Giles asked everyone what they had found. Only Dawn had no identification on her, but her first name was on her school bags. 'So, everyone knows who they are now?'
'We don't.' Angel and Spike chorused together.
'All I found was this.' Angel waved the card for Giles to see.
Giles frowned. 'You don't really look old enough to be a detective somehow. Maybe you're an assistant. Or maybe a client?' Angel looked even more disappointed.
Giles turned to Spike. 'No ID?'
Suddenly Xander piped up. 'Hey you two talk the same. You know, British.'
Spike and Giles turned together. 'English.'
Giles looked embarrassed. 'Damn funny thing this memory loss. I can remember some things and not others. But I do remember the fact that we NEVER say British.'
'Okay then, English, you're both English.'
Spike looked at Giles.
Buffy said cheerfully, 'Maybe you're related, brothers or something.'
Giles looked scornfully at her. 'Not with an accent like that he's not.'
'Hey, pillock, what's wrong with me bleedin' accent?'
'Nothing, but suffice to say you didn't hale from Westleigh on the Wold!'
Willow suddenly said, 'Maybe you're partners.'
Spike and Giles echoed, 'Partners?'
'Yeah, boyfriends, or sugar daddy and toy boy…'
Xander giggled. 'Yeah, either of you feeling gay?'
Giles hesitated and then felt incredibly embarrassed when Spike vehemently and without any hesitation whatever said, 'Fuck, no!'
Giles decided to keep quiet and fiddled with his glasses.
Dawn, searching through her bags, found an address and Buffy realised it was the same as hers. They looked pleased, 'Sisters?'
'I think we'd better go to our house and maybe something there will tell us what's happened.'
As no one had a better idea, they all trooped out.
As they walked along, Spike suddenly looked at Dawn and said, 'Don't worry, no need to be scared.'
Dawn looked surprised and said in a not too convincing voice. 'I'm not scared.'
It was Spike's turn to look puzzled. 'Yes you are, I can smell fear on you.'
Everyone turned to look at him.
He looked challenging at them. 'Hey! What? I can!'
'So can I.' Angel's words were quiet, but they made everyone jump.
Giles looked at the two of them. 'You can both smell things, on us?'
Spike looked at Angel. 'Fear? desire? hunger?' Angel nodded.
'Yes, we can.'
'How peculiar. No doubt it will all be explained soon. Come on.' Giles strode off, trying to appear masterful. As he had no idea which way to go and had to stop and ask a number of people, the affect was somewhat lost.
Spike now fell naturally into step with Angel, and they let the others draw ahead of them. 'Do you think they really can't smell everything or are they havin' us on?'
'No idea. The old guy seemed genuine.'
'Yeah. So…' Spike looked cheekily at Angel. 'What can you smell on me?'
Angel grinned. 'Well, that's not your missing wallet, I'm thinking.' He placed a hand lightly on the front of Spike's jeans.
Spike gasped in mock horror at his boldness. 'Matches yours then, mate!'
Angel looked at Spike, their eyes met, and they could not look away. Spike saw himself kissing this young man and was so turned on by that thought that he had to look away, but Angel's hand rested lightly on his cheek and turned him back. Angel's next words sent a tingle of desire straight into Spike's balls, and he answered before he had time to think.
'I could rip you to shreds.'
'…fuck you in that alley.'
'…tear you a new hole.'
'…bleed on you.'
'…spill on you.'
'What are you two talking about back there? Don't loiter. Do come on.'
Angel groaned and turned away but put his hand on Spike's arm. 'Err… we're going to catch you up later, okay?'
'Certainly not! We must stay together.'
Angel looked despairingly at Spike. 'When we get there?'
'Make an excuse to get away outside.'
'Do you smoke?'
They grinned at each other and jogged to catch up. Spike couldn't take his eyes off this beautiful, young man walking alongside him. He had no idea why this was; it was as if the blood called to him. His body was yearning towards this man as if his own blood cells were trying to leave his body and go to that strong one.
They got to the house and the rest of the confused group started gathering books from shelves and picking up photographs and other objects, trying to make sense of what had happened to them.
Angel came up and stood behind Spike, very close, pressing against Spike's back. Spike hissed and slid his hands between them.
He tried to say casually, 'I'm off for a fag', but knew it had come out in a tight, shaky voice.
No one took much notice when they went out to the back together. Spike bent his head down, lighting two cigarettes and gave one to Angel. They both stood smoking quietly. Suddenly Angel started to cough violently and he looked with disgust at the cigarette. Spike laughed. 'Guess we've found out who the smoker is!'
Angel threw it to he ground and squashed it into the soft earth.
Spike continued to smoke, watching him closely. 'So, what do you want…'
His words were cut off as Angel pressed his mouth to his. He felt strong hands circling the back of his head. He opened his mouth to the kiss and had again that strange but erotic feeling that his very blood was attracted to this man.
Angel pushed him back against the wall of the house and raised one leg so their groins pressed deliciously into each other.
They lost themselves to the kiss for many minutes. Spike could taste the nicotine on Angel's tongue, he could taste a faint metallic essence and he could feel their penises straining for release. His blood began to make his ears sing.
Spike pulled his mouth away and Angel smiled and rubbed noses lightly.
Spike laughed. 'You don't even know my bloody name. What the hell is this?'
Angel tipped his head on one side and pushed his groin further into Spike. 'I don't know. I only know I'm so desperate for you I'm going to explode soon. And I have the feeling from this erection, that I haven't exploded anywhere for a very long time.'
'Maybe you're a religious angel investigator. You know, some kind of swear-off-sex new age cult person…who wears hair gel.'
Angel's hand flew to his hair, and he made a face.
'Better than being a peroxide blonde, Blondie.' As if in a mirror, Spike's hand flew to his hair.
'Bottle blond? You are kidding?'
'Nope.' Angel's hand joined Spike's stroking through his blond, spiky hair.
'Huh. Somehow I felt kind of meaner than a blond. Jesus.'
'Maybe you're in a band…leather…punk hair…'
That cheered Spike up immensely. 'Rock star, hey? English rock idol. Yey.'
Angel took Spike's hands and spread his arms out in a crucifix and then just leant on him for a while, every inch of their bodies pressing into each other.
'Turn around.' Angel whispered the words into Spike's ear, and Spike groaned. He turned slowly around so his face pressed into the cedar shingles of the wall.
Angel hands slid up under his duster and tee shirt to feel over his back.
'God, you're so thin.'
'You're hands are cold.'
'So is your skin.'
'Huh. I feel hot enough inside.'
Angel's hands slid around Spike's waist to undo the button of his jeans.
'Do you want this?'
Spike didn't reply but tipped his head back twisting around for a kiss.
Angel kissed him deeply then pulled away and let his mouth rest against Spike's neck.
Spike was expecting Angel to carry on the promising undressing but squealed as Angel's teeth unexpectedly sank into his neck and bit him deeply and savagely. He only just had time to undo his zipper and free his erection before he came in great waves of shooting cum over the wall of the house.
By the time he had recovered Angel had pulled free of Spike's neck. Spike whirled around and punched him lightly in the chest. Angel's mouth was smeared with blood, and his eyes were wild, the pupils huge and intense. Spike swore he almost saw a swift colour change from amber to brown, but put it down to reflected glow from the security lighting.
'What the bloody hell was that?' Spike rubbed the wound in his neck; tears started to spring to his eyes. He pulled his hand away from the bite mark and looked ruefully at the blood on his fingers. Then he shocked himself by putting his fingers one by one into his mouth and sucking them. His eyes flew wide and he clawed again at his neck, sucking the new blood off once more.
Angel came up to him, and Spike flew to his mouth, licking and swirling his tongue around, sucking the metallic essence as much as he could. Angel's hands slid down to find Spike's semi-soft erection, and he held it in his hands for a moment before falling to his knees in front of Spike and starting to lick it clean.
Spike groaned and leant into Angel's face, his hands entwined in the soft, brown hair.
'Oh, God. That's good.'
'Hmm, tastes good.'
Spike rubbed his hand into his neck and transferred some blood to his penis. Angel groaned and became almost frantic trying to swallow Spike's cock whole.
Suddenly he reared up and pushed Spike once more against the wall of the house.
He turned Spike around and slowly eased his jeans off his hips and parted his cheeks. He whispered into Spike's ear, 'I don't know what any of this is about, but if I don't take you now, I think I'm going to die.'
Spike only nodded and tried to spread his legs further apart, but the jeans stopped him. Angel knelt down and prepared Spike's hole by licking around it for a moment then stood up and pressed the tip of his painful erection against it. 'I'm sorry, I think this is going to hurt.'
'And that from the Lecter impressionist.'
'Oh yeah, sorry.' Angel started to push.
Spike winced and buried his face into his arms.
'Shall I stop?'
Spike shook his head, not trusting himself to speak. Angel continued to push in, but it wasn't giving either of them much pleasure.
Suddenly Spike tipped his head back and said in a strangled voice, 'Thrust hard, make me bleed.'
Angel groaned and did as he was asked. As soon as Spike tore, Angel's cock glided freely in the tight passage, and he felt his foreskin working over his sensitive tip. Spike felt the ridge of Angel's cock head making him erect again. He spread his arms in pleasure and Angel copied him, their fingers entwining.
'What…are…you…thinking?' Angel's words punctuated his deep, slow thrusting.
Spike was almost too embarrassed to speak and mumbled quietly into the wall.
Angel pulled one hand free of Spike's fingers and pulled on the back of his head, lifting his face up. 'Tell me.'
'I'm thinking I love you, and that's so embarrassingly wussy that I'm not even gonna say it.'
Angel smiled and kissed deeply against Spike's ear, nuzzling into his hair.
'Do you know what's really weird about that, Blondie?'
'I knew it. When I saw you lying on me in the shop, my very first thought was, "He loves me".'
Spike shook his head in disgust at himself, and Angel laughed. He tipped his head back and rode into Spike like a well-oiled piston. He shouted to the night air, 'This is more than love!'
Spike laughed too. 'What do you mean, poof, you're buggering me against a wall, that's all.'
Angel put his mouth back to Spike's ear. 'It's not just love. I feel I need you or I'm only like a dead man. I feel…' he wrinkled up his forehead, trying to put what he felt into words. '…it's like you are my heart. I need you to live.'
Spike felt tears spring to the corners of his eyes, and he put his arms up behind him to pull Angel's head in close.
'Bring me off, please.'
Angel put his hands around Spike, and took his cock for him, and they were both quiet as Angel concentrated on their shared orgasms. He felt himself started to swell, worked his fingers over the thick vein on the underside of Spike's cock. Felt his own sperm leave his balls and rush up his shaft, felt Spike's sperm shooting out to hit the wall of the house and sent his deeply into Spike's bowels, milking himself for a long time against the thin, hard backside.
Eventually he pulled out and collapsed against Spike. They stood there, their bodies throbbing lightly in a deep, post-orgasmic bliss.
Spike was the first to move; he hitched up his jeans with a grimace of disgust. 'Hmm. Nice.'
Angel laughed. 'I'm okay.' He fastened his jeans, grinning at Spike.
'Next time, you get the leaky role, mate.'
'Next time? What if we get our memories back soon and we find I'm married to the short blond one and you're married to the red head?'
Spike tipped his head on one side and looked at Angel. 'If we are, then we'd be wrong, wouldn't we? That…' he indicated the damp stain on the wall, '…that's us for real, isn't it? Whoever we are, when we get our memories back, is not who we should be, if it's not this.'
'Well, it's only... I was so hard. I know I haven't done this for a long time so…if you were lying on me and this is so right…the thought kind of occurs to me…why weren't we doing it?'
Spike was about to reply, but the back door opened, and Giles stuck his head around. 'Ah, there you two are. Do come in, we have a lot to try and sort here.'
Spike shot Angel a worried look, and they went back into the house, Angel hoping that the others' sense of smell was as bad as they claimed it was.
They all talked for hours, going round and round the problem. Some opted for contacting the authorities, some for going to the hospital. Spike and Angel made very little contribution to the discussion. They sat side-by-side on the couch, their legs and hips pressed together. After a few minutes of useless resistance, Angel gave in to temptation and took Spike's hand in his, turning it over and over and playing with the fingers. In his other hand he twirled his Angel Investigations card.
The entwining of fingers had not gone unnoticed by the rest of the beleaguered group. Xander laughed and said, 'Guess we've discovered who's the gay couple then.'
Spike didn't even bother to look at him; he was busy watching Angel's fingers. 'I'm not gay.'
Xander only snorted and rolled his eyes at the others.
Eventually Giles declared they had all better sleep on it, and if the situation were still bad in the morning, he would go to the police and report the problem.
The girls examined the bedrooms and discovered by looking at photographs who slept where. Dawn gave up her room to Giles and Xander, opting to sleep with Buffy, and that left Spike and Angel down by the fire, alone.
As soon as the others were out of sight, Spike turned to Angel and straddled his lap, pushing Angel's head back against the couch and kissing at him, laughing. Angel put one hand up to the back of Spike's head, the other still held the small card.
Spike pulled away. 'What's with the card? Why've you been playing with that all evening?'
'Isn't it obvious what I should do? I should telephone this number and speak to someone at this, 'Angel Investigations'. They might know who I am. Who we all are.'
'Oh. Why don't you then?'
Angel looked right at him. 'Because of you.'
'Yes, you. What if this is not right? What if I am married to Buffy, or Willow or Tara. His eyes widened in horror. What if we are related or something. You might be my brother!'
'Well, that's not likely, given I'm English and you're American.'
'Brothers-in-law then. Three young women, three young men. Maybe this was a family reunion or something…' he trailed off. 'So that's why I don't want to phone.'
'Maybe we should make the most of this then? And seeing you've been keeping me hard all evening…'
'I was only holding your hand!'
Spike raised his eyebrow, and his look clearly said, 'That's all it took.'
Angel reached down and undid Spike's jeans. The tip of his cock poked out of the opening. Angel raised his eyebrows in a copy of Spike. He licked a finger and swirled it over the tiny slit.
'You do that, mate, and you'll get something you ain't bargaining on, all over you…and I didn't see any spare male clothes in those bedrooms!'
'Good point.' Angel pushed Spike backwards, holding on to his thighs. To their surprise and delight, Spike bent easily and gracefully back over Angel's legs till his head rested on the floor.
Spike laughed. 'Huh, supple.'
'Yeah, you sure the blood's not rushing to your head?'
Angel undid the remainder of Spike's zip and eased his cock completely out. He bent over it and took it in his mouth. Spike groaned from his upside down position, and they both laughed. 'Come on, luv, make it quick; I can't see you, and I like seeing you.'
Angel flicked his tongue over the exposed tip and sealed his lips around the cock head ridge. With long slow sucks he ran his mouth up and down the cool shaft. He wondered why the blond man's erection was still so cold and wanted to warm it for him.
Spike didn't last long; he shot a copious load of cum into Angel's mouth and they both groaned in unison as Angel swallowed deeply.
Angel let go of Spike's thighs, and he slipped to the floor in a heap. Angel slid off the couch to join him.
He kept his hand on Spike's soft penis, playing with it gently.
'You're still cold…why are you still cold?'
'Dunno…need a hot shower maybe?'
They grinned at each other. 'Do you think the others will know?'
'Think they know already…do you care?'
'Nah, don't know them from Adam!'
'Come on.' Angel hauled Spike to his feet, tucked him in, and they went upstairs searching for the bathroom. Someone was already in there, so they waited outside, Spike pressed up against Angel, tasting each other's mouths, teasing each other with hands on bulges and balls. Eventually, Buffy emerged, wrapped in a towel with wet hair.
'Jees, get a room you two.' But she smiled at them, amused at these two beautiful young men clearly so besotted with each other. She gave a cheeky look and said in an innocent voice, 'Oh, I'm so sorry; I don't think there's enough water for two showers.'
Spike laughed and winked at her, dragging Angel after him into the bathroom. They shut the door firmly behind them and looked at each other.
Angel pulled Spike to him and kissed him passionately. 'Time to warm up a bit?'
Angel turned to the shower and reached in to switch it on. Suddenly, he heard a terrified, strangled cry from behind him. 'Fucking hell!'
He spun around and saw Spike looking in the mirror. 'What's wrong?'
Spike wordlessly beckoned him over. He came up behind him, wrapping his arms around Spike, resting his chin on Spike's shoulder. Then he looked, too.
Spike felt Angel's arms give an involuntary jerk of fear. 'Fuck.'
Angel came round to the front and felt all over Spike's face, looking him up and down as if verifying his own eyes. Then he turned slowly back to the mirror.
They stood side by side.
Spike felt tears prick at his eyes again.
'This is all a dream, isn't it? I'm dreaming you.'
'Well, we're having a shared dream then!'
'Maybe I'm just dreaming you saying that!'
'I guess I'm going to have to make that call. Come on.'
They went slowly down together, and Angel took a cell phone out of his pocket and punched in the number. They sat down together on the couch. Spike started to kiss Angel's free hand, he turned and kissed the side of Angel's face, kissed into his hair. 'Whatever happens, stranger, whoever we are, I love you. Just as we are now. I love you.'
Angel nodded and wrapped his arm around Spike's head, pulling him down onto his shoulder. He held the phone between them so Spike could hear. There was no answer at the number given, so Angel turned the card over and dialled the number written by hand on the reverse. Finally it was answered.
'Angel Investigations... we help the helpless; can I help you?'
Angel raised his eyes at Spike and said hesitantly. 'Hello?'
'Oh, Angel, it's you. It's a bit late, isn't it? Beauty sleep and all that! What's up?'
'What's your name?'
'Angel, are you trying out a sense of humour or something? Stop being a pain.'
'Listen, I…we…I seem to have suffered amnesia. I don't know who I am, I found a card in my pocket with this number on, so I dialled it.' There was silence at the other end of the line for a moment.
'Angel, are you being serious…duh, what am I saying, of course you are. Okay. My name is Cordelia, Cordelia Chase, I'm your employee, or friend, I guess…oh God! Angel, you do know you are a…err…hang on a minute. I've got to think about this. Hold on. I'm going to call you back in ten minutes. I need to go to Wesley's…he's another colleague…ten minutes, Angel.' She rang off, not waiting for an answer.
Angel looked at Spike. Spike looked at Angel.
Angel smiled. 'It's a start. And hey! I have an employee!'
Spike lay on his back and put his head into Angel's lap. Angel played with his hair, just smiling down at him. They both felt they were capturing a few precious moments together. The shrill ring of the phone made them both jump.
Angel slid off the couch onto the floor, so his ear was next to Spike's and answered.
Spike turned onto his stomach and propped his head up on one hand.
'Angel…hello, my name is Wesley Wyndham-Price. I'm your employee… well, boss actually, but that's a long story…where are you?'
'In the house of someone called, Buffy.' Angel heard a sigh of relief from Wesley.
'Good, who else is there?'
'Three other girls, Willow, Tara and Dawn, a young man called something Harris and an older man called…'
'Yes, Rupert Giles, I think.'
'No one else?'
'Well, yes, there's a young man who doesn't have any ID.'
'Oh God. I was afraid of that. Describe him to me.'
Angel smiled at Spike. 'Young, blue eyes, handsome, incredible cheekbones.'
Spike wiggled his eyebrows and licked his lips provocatively.
'Is he bleached blond, English and wearing a long, black leather coat?'
Angel laughed. 'Hey, good detective! How did you know that?'
'Angel, listen carefully to me. Keep away from him. He is called Spike. He is very, very dangerous. He hates you and may try to kill you.' Angel thought it might be hard to stay away from this, 'Spike', given Spike had his tongue deep in Angel's ear. But Spike heard Wesley's words and slid to the floor next to Angel frowning at him and shaking his head.
'You must be mistaken, Wesley.'
'No, Angel. I'm not. You may be confused by him. He's your…you are… oh, lord. Listen, Angel, I have to tell you something that will come as a huge shock…no wait a minute…' Wesley paused clearly thinking deeply. 'Angel! Willow and Tara, they are powerful witches. If you've all forgotten then I think they must be responsible. It must be a spell of some sort. I'm going to research it. I will call you back. Is that okay? Are you okay?'
'Yes, I'm fine.'
'Angel, it's going to be light in…seven hours. If this takes me a long time, DO NOT leave the house and stay in a darkened room. Do you hear me? This is extremely serious. Do you understand?'
'Not really, but okay.'
'And Angel. Do not be alone with Spike. Stay with the others. Listen, Angel. He tortured you viciously…he sadistically tortured you nearly to death. He has been your nemesis for many years. He is extremely dangerous.'
Angel wondered if the hand slipped inside his pants now could be considered dangerous too. Wesley rang off, and Angel laid the phone down, slowly and sadly.
'Not good then…Spike.'
'Huh. Spike. What sort of bloody name is that?'
'So, you've heard we are sworn enemies, that you want to kill me, that you've tortured me, and all you can think about is that you don't like the name, Spike.'
'Well…' Spike kissed Angel deeply. 'I don't…' he licked over Angel's eyes. '…believe…' he gently fondled Angel's balls. '…any…' he undid Angel's zip. '…of…' he released Angel's erection and on the final word, '…it…' he plunged his mouth down onto Angel's hard shaft.
Angel leant back against the couch. He had a feeling that this is not what Wesley had in mind when he said, 'Stay away from Spike.'
He watched the blond head as it moved languidly up and down his shaft. He didn't believe it either. He felt drawn to this Spike, as if Spike were the reason somehow for his own existence, as if Spike made him whole.
Spike increased his sucking as if he too was trying to prove just how ridiculous Wesley's words had been. The phone rang again. Angel groaned and picked it up. He was so close to his orgasm he didn't push Spike away.
'Angel, it's me. Listen, do you see any…do you see a small pink flower anywhere? It is probably burnt. Use your vam…use your nose, Angel; it has a very pungent smell, like raspberries.'
Angel could smell it quiet easily and looked to the small bundle of burnt ashes in the grate.
He felt his balls tightening though and could hardly speak. 'Yes…I… see…it.'
Good. Just as I thought; it's Lethe's Bramble, a powerful ingredient in a forgetting spell. One of the witches will have a crystal on them. Find it, Angel and smash it. Listen, you must do this before it gets light. Do you understand me, Angel? If you don't you will… you…I'll have to tell you…just find it and smash it. Yes?'
'Are you okay, Angel? You sound funny. Spike hasn't got you, has he?'
Spike was busy swallowing Angel's cum, but Angel didn't have the heart to point this out to Wesley. When his release was over, Angel said quietly, 'No, he hasn't got me, Wesley. I'll find the crystal.'
'Good. Angel…we miss you…we want you back. You are important here. Come back. Please.'
Did Wesley sense Angel's reluctance to end this time of not knowing or did he, knowing Angel, only suspect that a period of deep forgetting might seduce him too much?
Angel put the phone down and looked at his watch. 'We've got a few hours before I must find this crystal thingy.'
'Find it now. I don't care. I'm not gonna stop loving you or wanting you, however my memory comes back.'
'How sure are you of that?'
'Sure as I can be. Look, you are, what? Twenty-six? How old do I look?'
'About the same.'
'So, how right could this friend of yours be? Jesus, only a few years ago we'd have been kids. We haven't had time to do all the stuff he said and hate each other for so long. Sounds like this Wesley bloke's a bit twisted. Maybe he fancies you and is jealous of us. How do you know? But no way do I hate you. It's not possible.'
'God, that sounds weird, what?'
'Aren't you forgetting that we didn't appear in the mirror? I think there is more to this than we can rationalise.'
'Oh, fucking hell, Angel.' Spike got up and stomped towards the stairs. 'Hey, witches. Where are you?'
He tracked Willow and Tara down, woke them rudely and started to search their clothes. Angel came in just as he triumphantly found the crystal.
He gave Angel a long look and put his hand out to be held. Angel took it, and with his other hand, Spike crushed the crystal.
Almost a week later Angel sat at his desk going though paper work. Both Cordelia and Wesley knew he was not even looking at the letters in his hand, but he made a believable picture of quiet efficiency to any stranger who might happen to look in.
It had been an awful week for everyone in the agency. Angel had radiated pain. He had told them very little about his trip to Sunnydale but had returned only a few hours after speaking to Wesley. He had shut himself in his room for the first three days, refusing all entreaties to come out, but telling everyone in a quiet voice that he was quite alright, and no, he didn't need anything.
When he had emerged, he looked drawn and in pain, but he would still not talk about his trip.
He did not feel the need to talk about it, because he was living it in his head over and over again.
It had taken a few moments for the spell's magic to clear their heads. It was like working backwards. He was clear about that moment, the previous evening, remembered coming to Sunnydale and why, remembered Angel Investigations, remembered Sunnydale and Buffy, then it had all come back: Angelus, hell, death, rebirth, evil, pain and… Spike. He had remembered, Spike. And as this had gone through his mind, he had watched similar thoughts invading Spike.
Unconsciously, as the pain returned, and as the hatred between them manifested itself again, their fingers tightened on each other as if their bodies were acting independently of their minds. So finally, the two vampires stood holding hands with the creature they hated most in the world that was also the creature they had been loving more intently than they had ever loved anything, only a few moments before.
Who knows what might have happened had they been left alone to talk quietly and resolve some of the deep issues between them. They weren't. They were inundated by humans rushing in and all talking at once, all laughing at who had said what, to whom. Except for Buffy that is. She stood to one side staring at Angel.
Angel looked in anguish to her. He saw with incredible clarity how her returning memories were affecting her. Heaven…dying…Mommy…Glory… Angel. He felt overwhelming sadness for her but also had a clarion clear thought, "I'd only be convenient now, too" As if in shock, Buffy indicated his hand, which was still clasped in Spike's. Angel let it drop as if Spike's hand burnt him.
'You…you two…all night…'
'Buffy, I'm sorry…' What could he say? He could not explain it to himself, let alone explain it to her.
Spike was staring at him with an unreadable expression on his face.
Xander didn't help of course. He couldn't resist putting his arm around Spike's shoulders and saying gleefully, 'Now I understand your fondness for leather, Spike. Love the gayness angle.'
Spike furiously swung his arm to hit out at him and fell to his knees in agony as his chip kicked in.
Giles tried to calm the situation down. He led Dawn away and suggested they all go downstairs.
Angel almost put a hand out to help Spike, but Buffy pushed past him and ran out. He turned to follow. He had meant to turn back to help Spike when he had caught her, but by the time he'd thought about it, Spike ran angrily past him, down the stairs and out in the dark, lonely night. He had not spoken a single word since breaking the crystal in his hand.
Angel sighed and started to read the building violation notification once again. No good. He couldn't fix on the words; they swam in his head on the waves of confusion lapping there. He pushed it into his pending tray and pulled the next envelope off the pile. He slid it open and fished around for the letter. It was empty. He tipped it up, nothing. He tore it down both sides and saw, trapped in one corner, a single, tiny, pink flower. He pulled it free and put it to his nose. Raspberries. He twirled it in his fingers.
A few hours later when Cordelia took him some coffee, she was surprised to find his office empty and the in-tray still alarmingly full.
Back at his crypt, Spike pottered around, placing favourite objects in new places. He didn't own much, but could give himself the impression he had a vast collection of stuff by this simple expediency of shifting it around every so often.
He stood still and bent his head towards the floor for a minute and then said quietly, 'Even Harris remembers to knock these days.'
Angel stepped out of the shadows from where he had been watching Spike for a while and held up the tiny fragment of flower. 'I thought this was an invitation. Was I wrong?'
Spike sat down on the edge of his bed and lit a cigarette. Through the smoke he peered at Angel. 'No, I guess not.'
'It's a very small piece, Spike. Can't do much forgetting with this.' Angel moved over and sat next to Spike on the bed.
'Yeah, well, I decided I didn't have a lot I wanted to forget anymore...' He smiled tentatively at Angel. '…stranger.'
Angel almost smiled back, but couldn't quite make the little-used expression reach his eyes.
'You ran out, Spike, before I could talk to you.'
'You needed to speak to Buffy, not me.'
This answer surprised Angel. 'Why did you send this to me? Surely you don't really believe we can pick up that dreamtime again, do you? That wasn't for real, Spike. It was just an interlude in our reality created by magic used by an amateur who thinks she can play in the big league.'
Spike pursed his lips and started scratching the paint idly off one nail. 'That wasn't an interlude, Angel. That was our default setting.'
Angel frowned. 'I don't understand.'
'When everything crashes, pet... when it all goes to rat-shit, you go back to your default settings. It's just programming…just what's set. What's real. That's all that happened. All the rest: all the hating, the fighting, the torturing, the women, the death, the life... it's all meaningless. It was all added on, over the default setting.'
Spike laid his hand on Angel's thigh and Angel did not pull away. For the first time, Spike looked up at Angel. 'Are you denying you loved me…?' even Spike gave a rueful smile as he added, '…when you didn't know it was me, that is.'
Angel laughed. 'No, I can't deny that.'
'And it was immediate, wasn't it? Did you feel it too, Angel? The moment I woke up on you I thought, fuck, want him!'
Spike's hand had moved to Angel's hair, stroking lightly through the soft brown locks. Angel put his hand up and caught at Spike's arm, bringing the hand to his lips. 'I told you, the moment I saw you lying on me I knew you loved me and…' he looked challengingly at Spike, '…and I admit, I felt as if I loved you, too. But how can this work now, Spike? We aren't on our default settings; we've both been too reprogrammed for this to ever work.'
Spike took the tiny flower out of Angel's hand. 'Are you trying to tell me that, this, is more powerful than our combined wills? I can forget whatever I choose to forget, Angel, and so can you.'
Angel looked surprised at this. 'What would you have us both forget then? Marcus?' There was a tiny hint of bitterness here, and it was not lost on Spike.
Spike, however, was not in the least put off by this. 'No way, I enjoy thinking about you screaming; turns me on every time.'
Angel tipped his head back and gave a very uncharacteristic, peeling laugh. 'Well, alright then, a certain incident with a crowbar; I'd like to forget that.'
Spike made a theatrical show of screwing up his face as if thinking deeply, then gave a cheeky grin. 'Nope, get off on that memory, too.'
'Is there any memory that doesn't get you hard?'
Spike suddenly looked serious. 'Yeah, wheelchairs. Being fucked when you can't feel it ain't good. Could lose that memory, mate.'
It was Angel's turn to pretend to be thinking deeply. 'No way! Stays in. Reminds you of your place in the scheme of things.'
Spike's eyes widened in mock outrange. 'Bastard!'
Angel stuck his tongue out and said, 'Dru and holy water.'
Spike replied gleefully, 'My all time favourite memory; scream for me again, Angel! Hey, what about my bleedin' ring?'
'Need that one to remind you you're an idiot. Staking Darla.'
The both looked at each other and laughed at the same time.
Angel shook his head. 'You're keeping that memory so you always appreciate the contrast.'
'What contrast, you poof?'
'The contrast between her and…this.' Angel pulled him down until they were both lying on the bed. Spike thought Angel was going to kiss him, but Angel just lay there looking at him.
Spike started to feel uncomfortable. 'What! You great ponce! What?'
Angel shook himself slightly. 'I'm trying to see that blond-haired, young man I adored last week.'
Spike looked away, shyly. 'Well, do you see him?'
Angel put a hand on the button of Spike's jeans and slowly undid it. 'Not sure. Maybe this will help.'
He looked down. 'Yep, definitely getting more familiar.'
Spike laughed and rolled onto his back, and Angel systematically peeled off the remaining clothing, at each item stopping to say with mock seriousness, 'yes…here he comes.'
Finally Spike could stand it no longer and pulled Angel onto his now naked body. 'He IS coming you great wassock. Stop pissing around.'
Angel lay on Spike and started kissing down his body. He worked his tongue over Spike's nipples for a while, and Spike arched back in delight. When he reached Spike's erection, he was surprised when Spike pushed him away and sat up, frantically tearing at his shirt.
'Hey, careful. Silk here.'
'Poof,' was Spike's only reply as he continued his inelegant undressing of Angel. When Angel was completely naked, Spike pushed him onto his back and started to lift his thighs.
Angel replaced them firmly onto the bed. 'Err…what are you doing, Spike?'
Spike mumbled something, and Angel sat up. 'What did you say?'
Spike looked challengingly at him. 'I'm resetting those bloody defaults.'
Angel tipped his head on one side quizzically.
'Look, Angel, soon as all the shit between us was stripped away and it was just us, I was face squashed, being buggered against a wall… the old default, mate. Well, smell the roses, Angel. I'm resetting those defaults. Adding to the original, so to speak. It's your turn, poof.'
Angel's eyes widened. 'I've never…'
Angel shook his head.
Spike climbed off and fetched some lotion, then crawled back over the bed to Angel. He held up the bottle and wiggled his scarred eyebrow at Angel.
'Time to make some new memories, pet?'
Angel laughed and nodded then lay back on the bed and spread his arms in a mock crucifix, a copy of Spike's position on the wall.
'Turn over, it'll be easier for you.'
Angel shook his head. 'I want to see you.'
Spike smiled, pleased and started to rub the lotion over his cock and around Angel's hole. 'You can help, Angel, if you want, it's allowed.'
Angel shook himself out of the trance he was in and put his hand down to Spike's cock.
Angel looked at Spike, and Spike looked intently at Angel. 'Please, it'll really turn me on.'
Angel groaned and glanced at the small flower lying half-crushed under Spike's knee as if wondering if he could later obliterate this particular memory, but he did as Spike asked. He put his hand down to his own hole. Spike poured on more lotion and watched greedily as Angel worked it around, occasionally pushing a finger in through the tight ring of muscle. Angel watched Spike watching him. The sight made him want to push in a great deal more than his finger, he felt incredibly aroused as he watched Spike's eyes dilate.
Eventually, Spike took his thick, hard penis in his hand and rested it against Angel's slick hole.
Angel nodded, and Spike pushed in. Angel's eyes opened in fear, then in pain, and then in wonderment. He hissed and arched back onto the bed. Spike gently started long, slow movements in the tight channel. Angel took hold of his own cock and started working it; Spike poured some lotion on for him and enjoyed watching it slide down over the blood red tip.
There was no sound except for the almost imperceptible hiss of flesh sliding wetly against flesh. Spike pushed Angel's thighs up and back, opening up full access to the slippery passage. He wanted to find Angel's soft swelling so he could work it for him. When Angel suddenly pulled himself up to sitting and gasped, Spike knew he'd found it.
'That'll be a good memory then, pet!'
Angel only nodded and put his hands behind Spike's backside trying to embed him deeper. Spike laughed and pushed Angel onto his back, lifted and spread him and plunged in with a strength and passion he'd been holding back till then.
Angel started to howl, a low, feral sound that made the hairs on the back of Spike's neck stand up. He joined in. He felt his balls contract and pulse, and his cold seed shot in fast spurts against Angel's cool walls.
Angel took a few more minutes to come, and Spike just kept up a soft, gentle movement in his ass to help him find his sweet release.
When Spike saw that Angel was totally spent and the last few drops bubble over the tip of Angel's cock, Spike fell onto him and lay his head down onto Angel's wet, sticky chest. Angel put his hands up to Spike's hair and then wrapped his arms tightly around Spike's head, covering him entirely. Spike lay in the darkness of Angel's arms. He felt like falling asleep, but didn't want to miss anything. He thought Angel was being far too quiet.
He grinned, took Angel's arms off, lifted his head and said, 'Who the fuck are you, and why are you lying under me?'
Angel smiled at him, a deep smile that this time reached his eyes and his heart.
'I'm Angel, and because I love you.'