Let’s Go Home. You’re Too Sick.
“Let’s go home. You’re too sick.”
Spike barely had enough energy to lift his head and look up at Xander. Luckily, he was already leaning back against a headstone, so it kept his head up. “Vampires don’t get sick.”
“No, but half-vamps do. Apparently.”
Xander glanced around the cemetery to make sure it was otherwise deserted. Then he sat down next to Spike in the dirt and grass, cross-legged. He put a hand on Spike’s thigh and rubbed. “Any point in saying bless you?”
Spike gave a half smile as he sniffed hard into his sleeve. “How much longer are we supposed to be patrolling?”
Xander checked his watch. Four hours. They were supposed to be out here in the cold for another four and a half hours. “Three hours.”
Spike eyed him. “Your heartbeat sped up. You’re either lying or you’re anxious.” He sniffed again, rubbing his nose on his sleeve then dropping his arm as if nothing were wrong.
Xander continued to rub his thigh. “Maybe I’m lying because I’m anxious.”
“No need to be. I’m f-fine-h’INShishhhh!”
“Yeah, ‘cause you sound so fine.”
Spike smiled again. “Thanks, pet.”
Xander gave his thigh a little slap. “What I mean is, every vamp within a mile can probably hear you sneezing and are closing in on us right now. I’m usually the one who plays the role of the helpless victim. I’m not sure I can handle vamps on my own.”
“You can handle yourself. You’ve been fighting at Buffy’s side for how many years?”
“Yeah, but I’m not a slayer. And you’re too sick to fight. So I think we should go home before your little sneezes get us killed.”
“We’re not going home until we finish this patrol route.” Spike sighed and tried to get up, pushing off the ground. But he didn’t have the energy to make to it his feet and landed back in place with a great thump. “Xan…” he started, closing his eyes. Xander grabbed his arm and moved so he could slide an arm around Spike’s middle. He hauled the half-vamp to his feet and kept him there, even as Spike leaned on him for support. “Cheers.” Then he turned a little, facing Xander, and buried his face in Xander’s shirt. “hehh-INKXxxxshtt! Ingistxxx!”
At least these were quieter, muffled into Xander’s chest. He ran his hand up and down Spike’s back. And he was just about to insist again that they go home when he heard a rustling and a snarl like an animal’s. Damn. Xander pulled his hand back and took hold of his knife in one hand and a stake in the other. “Break in 3… 2… 1…” Spike jumped back, stumbling a little, dizzily. And Xander turned, slashing and flailing wildly. It wasn’t careful or calculated, but he got lucky. If he couldn’t get his boyfriend home and into bed, at least he could get lucky in a fight.
Xander laughed to himself as he drove a wooden stake into the vamp’s chest. It wasn’t deep enough at first, but he gave a second, hard push and the stake did its job. As the vamp turned to dust, Xander turned back around. He was panting, sweating, heart racing, but he was proud. “Pretty slick, huh? I could give Buffy a run for… her… Spike?”
“h’Inkkshhhh! Ihkuhshhhh! huh-ingtshhhhh!” Practically doubled over with one hand pressed to his face, Spike reached out with his other hand until it hit Xander. He lifted his head, blinking, sniffling. “Let’s go hobe?”