Summary: Spike gets naked. Xander isn’t happy about it. S4.
Notes: for day 1 of the 12 days of ficlets challenge. Today’s theme is ‘denial’.
Well, three ladies.
Well, he’d never made it all the way with Cordelia, and there was the tiny niggling suspicion in his mind that what with the crazy and the strangling that Faith hadn’t been all that satisfied, but there was Anya! And she was a thousand years old! She’d probably had sex with thous… okay, not a good thought, but she was experienced, and he kept her satisfied.
Only, just recently, she’d stopped coming over, claiming it was creepy with Spike there. Which he agreed with, but when he tried to point out that Giles refused to take Spike back, Anya accused him of being less than straight.
She was wrong, of course.
He didn’t think there was anything wrong with it, if that was somebody’s thing, and if he’d been uncomfortable around Larry after his little confession… well, he’d been uncomfortable around Larry since third grade, when he’d gotten his hair washed in interesting ways in the toilet bowl. No, he was a thoroughly modern Xander.
Gah! He caught himself. No, no showtunes references. He should make his pop-culture allusions to such manly things as – he mulled it over – Batman. There was a studly hetero role-model, who battled crime and bagged gorgeous woman and, now that he came to think of it, dressed up in fetishwear and lived with an underage boy. Who wore tights.
In comparison, Xander unwillingly sharing a basement with a neutered vampire who was evil and irritating and not, he wanted to make this very clear, not in any way hot, was a paragon of heterosexuality.
That conclusion kept him happy for five or six minutes, until Spike started taking off his clothes.
“What…” he waited until he was sure his voice wasn’t about to backslide four years into squeaky adolescence, and continued, “what are you doing?”
Spike dumped his t-shirt on the floor. “S’it look like I’m doing?”
“Auditioning for the title role in Ewan McGregor: A Life?” Xander guessed.
He raised an eyebrow (the scarred one, Xander automatically processed, trying not to think too closely about when he’d noticed which side the scar was on) and said, “That who gets you going? Shoulda known it’d be blokes with accents got you hot.” He was unbuttoning his jeans. He was standing in the middle of Xander’s basement making crude and completely untrue sexual innuendo and he was actually unbuttoning and lowering and pulling off his jeans.
And he did it all slowly, his eyes on Xander, tongue just poking out from between his lips, and he still kept his balance.
Evil undead bastard.
Spike didn’t wear underwear. Xander didn’t remember any French, he had no recollection of a single element of the periodic table, but the fact that Spike favored going commando was going to stay with him until the day he died. Which, if the good lord loved him, would be right about now.
He forced himself not to panic, or blush, or shoot his mouth off, or move a muscle. It worked for being cornered by T-Rexs, it could work for being baited by a vampire.
He was lucky. After maybe ten seconds of no reaction, Spike’s ADHD kicked in, and he lost interest in the game. “These need washed,” he said, scooping up the clothes in one smooth motion that required him to bend over, and therefore made Xander’s eyes go Stanley Ipkiss.
Okay, silver lining. Spike was doing his own laundry rather than trying to bitch at Xander until he did it, which was good. Spike stayed at home all day when Xander was at work and he could damn well do his own laundry.
Oh God, give him a quart of vodka and a home dye-job and he’d be his own mother.
Something to distract his attention, that was what he needed. He grabbed some scattered comics from beside the bed like they were a lifeline, and very deliberately turned so he was facing away from the vampire currently wrestling with the washer door. Yes, good old X-Men, that was far more interesting.
He lasted a good seven and a half minutes before he sneaked a look over his shoulder.
“Hey! Naked vampire off the couch!”
“Not sitting on the floor.” He drummed long fingers on his stomach. “Catch my death.”
Xander turned, then wished he hadn’t. Spike was doing this on purpose. Lounging there, all pale and naked and apparently not a natural blond.
He crossed to the closet, yanked out a shirt and pants, and tossed them over. They fell short of the couch, and he remembered why he was always picked last for dodgeball. “Put those on.”
Spike glanced disdainfully at the brightly-patterned shirt and frowned. “Shhh,” he said. “What’s that?”
Xander listened, but couldn’t hear anything except the soft clank of the washer and the slightly ragged edge to his own breathing. “What?”
He shrugged. “Thought it might be hell freezin’ over. My mistake. Think I’ll give the togs a miss.”
This could not be happening. This was some huge, cosmic joke. “Spike, for God’s sake, put on some clothes.”
“Make me.” Two words, but they sounded like a line being crossed. A glove-slap. A thrown-down challenge. And Xander, who had once faced down Angelus…
…retreated back to his comics.
He tried not to feel Spike smirking at his back.
He wasn’t gay.
But for the next few months, whenever someone said the word "bisexuality" - or, far more common, "laundry" - his mouth became suddenly dry.