(ETA: I've eaten lots of bread and peanut butter. Stomach is starting to pay attention. I'm feeling better, now just kind of limp and sore and tired. ETA2: I just found out Alexis & Aly got married. I feel...strangely disturbed at posting this today, but I guess I'll leave it up. Must not conflate real life and fiction, must not conflate real life and fiction...)
Anyway. Enough about me.
"He's antsy these days," Wes observes as they enter the suite.
"Must be too much caffeine."
He turns and gives Spike a dry look. "I suspect that Angel's problem is somewhat more...pressing."
Spike wanders up into Wes's space like a cat seeking heat. "Want I should take care of it for him?"
He closes his hand around the side of Spike's neck, pushes his thumb hard up and down, liking the way the bones and cartilage ripple under his touch as Spike works his throat. Like a cat again, chin lifting. "Don't even joke," he says, confirming his claim with both word and brand. "I don't share."
The contrast of hard touch and gentle voice is designed to make Spike do exactly what he does: let the mask loosen, close his eyes, lift his chin a fraction higher. He's parting his lips on a word he doesn't say, lashes fluttering, head canting to one side, the right, the side so often weighed down by headaches.
Wes lifts his other hand and steadies Spike's head, palming and stroking his hair and then playing his hands around the spots of greatest tension: the hinge of jaw to ear, the juncture of the shoulder, the temple. Within a few minutes, he's got Spike pliant and purring--breathy groans of vibrato, guttural sounds, soft and straight out of the jungle.
"You looked like you were hurting earlier," he says, setting the words adrift quietly.
"Was. Buggering chip."
"The chip's gone, love. Remember?"
Spike's brows draw into a tiny frown and his pause goes on too long. "Right."
They've had this conversation so many times that it should be routine, but the words have become painful through repetition, difficult to drag out of himself no matter how many variations he devises. "This," his hands frame Spike's confused face with caresses, "is magic, not technology. Just some residual energies, all swirling around like lightning bugs in a jar."
"The spell," Spike says, a little bit of memory trickling out now. Or maybe he's just recalling what Wes has told him before. "Trying to open the gate."
Wes swallows once, a sharp bob of reflex. "No."
"Mmm." A neutral, dismissive sound and Wes can see Spike's thoughts move on, his eyes focus. "And what's on the menu for lunch then? Dirty knees or should I just set the table with my arse?"
His lovely, shamelessly crude vampire. Wes pretends to think about his question. "Bed, I think. Take it all off."
He's still just toeing off his shoes and easing the knot in his tie in the time it takes Spike to get naked. The vampire pulls his shirt off over his head; his trousers need only a few quick touches to slide off his hips and fall in a heavy slither to the carpet. Wes debates telling him to pick the clothes up, but is distracted as he notices Spike's chest.
"What is this?" He takes great care to keep calm, not to let sickness taint his tone.
Spike looks down at himself and traces the knife marks on his skin, already scabbed over; not much blood at all, really, but it's still horrible. "Don't remember."
Stepping closer, Wes holds Spike's chin, makes him look up. His voice is level. "You're not allowed to hurt yourself. You know that. When you forget, you disappoint me."
The other man's face goes still, eyes not even blinking, and Wes wants to cry at the pain and effort there, the obvious struggle to imprint this command on memory. "I'm sorry," Spike whispers roughly. Self-hatred passes like a shadow under the skin, reshaping his features for a moment so that Wes might have been looking in a mirror.
But indulgence is a temptation he can't afford. "This is mine." He presses his hand to Spike's chest and moves it slowly down the ladder of ribs before bringing it to rest on one elegant hip. "Just like my Matisse or the contents of my library. Those are things I know you'd never think to mishandle, so I have to wonder why you would damage something of infinitely greater value to me."
The flash of misery in Spike's eyes--the desperation to please him--nearly undoes Wes. "You have to punish me," he says with low urgency. "I'll learn."
But the only punishment that has any effect is cold rebuff, and that only for a while. Wes has learned himself the hard way that it isn't worth it. For him to leave would send Spike into an anxious spiral of pacing and muttering that could last hours, and Wes would return to find him curled up in a corner, rocking and lonely and trying to remember what he wasn't supposed to forget. It was agony for them both.
"Have to?" he echoed, raising his brows.
That's no punishment, but Spike obeys passionately and immediately, mouth frantic and wild against his when Wes hauls him into a hard kiss. Spike's hands pluck the remaining buttons of his shirt, unfix his belt; he's tugging Wes's trousers down as he breaks from the kiss and goes to his knees. His mouth is busy before Wes has a chance to speak, two quick lush sucks that leave him wet and then he's rubbing his face against Wes's prick, nuzzling his balls, worshipping with an artless hunger that Wes loves as much as skill, but when his mouth returns he's got that too; it's no more than a minute before the room is spinning and Wes is making sounds of heavy, agonized joy. Spike's slick tongue drags up the underside of his shaft again and again, long enough for time to stretch and melt away, then it stops just before complete withdrawal, curls and cups the head, polishes it with an exquisitely fierce pressure, stabbing, sucking, bringing him right up to the edge in seconds.
"Stop," Wes has to say, voice nearly breaking.
He breathes slowly and gathers himself, flattening the tremors that almost had him. "Get on the bed," he says, sounding like an emphysema victim, feeling about eighty as he eases his lust-crippled body to the nightstand and fumbles out some lube. The bedside phone rings. He grabs it with his free hand and rips the jack from the wall, then lets the machine drop with a clatter and climbs on the bed.
"Don't need that," Spike says, taking the lube from his hand and tossing it in the same direction as the phone. "Said I was ready for you."
"Oh god," Wes manages to get out. He pushes Spike over and gets full cooperation--the vampire rising to his knees, legs widening--and shoves inside him before he can think of any reason not to. His prick feels enormous, throbbing, filthy with lust, and Spike is moaning, flexing well-exercised muscles around him, pushing back that lean and perfect bottom as if he can't get enough. Wes's eyes half close as he captures Spike's hips in a crueler grasp and thrusts to meet him. Slamming forward, he feels like he's trying to batter his way inside a castle, and his mind flickers with red, brutal images of rape and war that only make him harder. For a moment he's got his teeth bared the way a vampire might, he's snarling and buried to the hilt in his prey and fighting to the bloody end, and then he feels that familiar crest--as if his feet are lifting right off the ground--and just as suddenly he's gasping, almost sobbing, and coming with violent cries.
Spike convulses around him, an arrhythmic seizure that makes orgasm last even longer, until Wes is humping out the last thrusts dry, the sexual equivalent of grinding gears, and the stripped nerve endings at the crown of his cock are firing with twinges that could have been as much pain as pleasure. His body doesn't know and doesn't care about the difference; it's all good.
"That's..." Good, he tries to say, drawing out and collapsing next to Spike. "Unh," it comes out, a pathetic, unmanly squeak of a sound.
Next to him, Spike has even less to say. He's rumpled and happier looking than ten minutes ago. It does Wes's heart glad, makes everything else in the world fall away as meaningless. Here's a laugh. He remembers when he used to sleep with the living and give a toss about what other people thought.
"Come here, sweetheart," he says, and Spike comes and rests his head on Wes's chest, and he can feel the cool, leashed strength in all that bended muscle. Beautiful man. Damage and submission can give Spike the appearance of being weak, but love and loyalty are powerful forces. People only see what they want to see.
People are often very stupid.