I might add more to this, I might not. Depends if anyone wants more. It's not really slash…slashy undertones, of course (how could I not?), but I'm not much of a romantic. It's meant to be set just after In The Dark…so review, if you will. If you don' t then I'll just proceed to glare at you. [Glares]
Disclaimer: Joss, o'course. And William Blake…

Angel's POV

I could tell you what I was thinking, but you probably wouldn't understand. He was just sitting there, puffing away on a cigarette, his pale skin and white blonde hair glowing in the darkness. Just sitting there, inhaling and exhaling and I watched the smoke escape his nostrils. He looked down on his luck.

And every moment I stood there and watched him, I felt a sting in my not-quite-healed wounds, still angry from the hot pokers.

My boy; my silly, little boy just sitting there and puffing away at his cigarettes, as if it had never happened. He was still here; still in my city and still feeding off of my people. My stubborn, stupid, little, naughty boy.


He turned his sulky blue eyes on me, his lower lip slightly protruding in an unconscious pout.

"Peaches," he returned.

"Why are you still here?" My voice was soft, calm, and controlled, but inside I was furious. I wanted to beat him – tie him up and strap him with my belt. I wanted him to be in so much pain that he'd cry and beg and plead for me to stop. I wanted to sink my fangs into his neck and drain him until he couldn't feel anymore.

"Not ready to go back home." He studied my face, an all too familiar smirk gracing his lips, but I saw his hands shake and I knew he was just drowning in trepidation. "What do you want, Angelus?"

It was my turn to smirk and I think he knew that he wasn't going to get a response because he quickly got to his feet and backed up against a wall, slowly inching away.

"Came here to punish me, did you?" he asked.

The air was satiated with the scent of his fear.

I lunged and grabbed his throat, effectively pinning him to the wall. Leaned in real close and heaved unnecessary, heavy breaths onto his neck.

"What in the bloody hell are you gonna do to me?"

Remains to be seen, doesn't it?

Spike's POV

I woke up in a comfortable bed, feeling sticky and wet and tired.

It took a few minutes to realize why, and only then because it's kind of hard to miss giant red stains on white sheets. Bloody hell.

I managed to maneuver myself up against the headboard, ignoring the screams of agony belted out by the welts all over my back. He had left me untied, probably certain that I wouldn't be able to get too far. Kills me to say it, but the poof was right.

It was impossible to quell the feeling of cold dread that lingered inside of me; the old man still had it in him, and that was terrifying. Lord knows what the wanker wanted to do to me next.

"I see you're awake."

I bit down hard on my already bloody lip to keep from screaming like a nancyboy. He had been there, sitting on a chair by the bed and watching me the whole soddin' time and I had failed to notice. I really should be more observant.

"Yeah," I croaked, and I couldn't help but wince at how pathetic I sounded. So I straightened as much as I could without crying and solidly demanded, "What of it?"

"How are you feeling?"

Well, that was unexpected.

"Like someone tried to beat the bleedin' hell outta me," I snapped. "How do you think I'm feeling?"

He chuckled softly. "I hadn't quite aimed that high," he told me. "No one can beat the hell out of you, William."

"Don't call me that," I snarled.

"I'll call you whatever I want," he replied smoothly, getting to his feet and settling down on the other side of the bed. I fruitlessly tried to move away, but he grabbed my arm and I went stock-still. "You're mine."

Had it not been so, I would have vehemently denied it. But it was true. It's always been true. My sire is the bedpost and the blood that he's passed down to me is the pair of unbreakable handcuffs. I will forever and always be chained to him, unable and not wanting to completely escape.

He eased me down onto my stomach and got up. I heard him rummage around and a few minutes later, I felt a cool, wet cloth tenderly dabbing at the wounds on my back. The wanker was fixing me.

What in the bloody hell is going on?

Angel's POV

My boy was falling asleep under my ministrations. Once in a while, I'd hear him purr in relaxation and every so often, he'd stiffen as if he were doubtful of my intentions. I don't blame him – he didn't know my intentions.

In fact, I had no intentions in mind. He was staying, though.

I was going to make him stay.

"Awake, awake my little boy!" I murmured. "Thou wast thy Mother's only joy; Why dost thy weep in thy gentle sleep? Awake! Thy father does thee keep."

Spike snorted, recognizing the poem instantly.

"O, what land is the land of Dreams?" he moaned. "What are its mountains and what are its streams?" He hesitated, and I remained silent, willing him to go on as I dabbed some dried blood away. A moment later, he continued, "Oh Father, I saw my Mother there. Among the lilies by waters fair."

It was still his turn. When he was a fledgling, I used to read him poetry by William Blake. The shred of compassion Angelus possessed was always aimed at his childeren, and I can't help the feeling of possession that rages through me when I see them to this day.

"Among the lambs, clothed in white," his voice was little more than a whisper. "She walked with her Thomas in sweet delight. I wept for joy, like a dove I mourn; Oh! When shall I again return?"

I knew he took secret delight in reciting the poetry with me. He was my little poet. My little Will. Always would be.

"Dear Child, I also by pleasant streams have wandered all night in the Land of Dreams; but though calm and warm the waters wide, I could not get to the other side," I replied quietly as he rolled over, and much to my surprise, rested his head in my lap. Old habits die hard, and I planted my hand in his hair and raked my fingers along in what I believe was a soothing fashion.

"Father, oh father," he mumbled, eyes closed. "What do we here in this land of unbelief and fear? The Land of Dreams is better far, above the light of the Morning Star."

From the mouths of babes…

Spike's POV

I found myself alone when I woke up the second time, but I could hear him and Cordelia and the mick trotting about upstairs. A large part of me told me to run, but that little nagging, nancyboy in my head told me I wanted to stay. I carefully hefted myself up and was surprised to find that I hardly hurt at all.

"Shirt…where's a shirt…" I muttered, looking around for my black t-shirt. My leather duster, thank god, was laid over a chair, but my shirt was nowhere to be found. Peaches had most likely ripped it up anyway.

I settled for going through his closet and pulling on one of his pooftastic white sweaters; which, by the way, were much too large for me.

Taking in a deep, unnecessary breath, I walked up the stairs to go meet my fate.

"Hey, Bleach Boy," Cordelia deadpanned. "Love the sweater."

I smirked. The little chit was gorgeous and despite her moments of stupidity, her bluntness and lack of tact never ceased to amuse me.

"Once again, love the hair," I replied, raising an eyebrow at the large chocolate waves on her head.

After a decently long staring contest, I could tell she was getting a little antsy with having me around. This was confirmed when she yelled at the top of her lungs, "ANGEL! YOUR LITTLE BRAT'S AWAKE!" which brought Angel bursting out of his office with the little mick in tow.

"'Ello, Peaches," I grinned.

"You're wearing my sweater."

"Couldn't find my shirt."

"I destroyed it," he admitted. "You know Doyle?" He gestured towards the mick and I gave a small nod of acknowledgement.

"Ey, mate," I smirked.

"Hello, Blondie."

I should be draining these people dry. Not standing here making small talk.

However, the look on me old sire's face is not to be toyed with. He'll do it again. He'll thrash me again and most likely he'll do it harder. So I sit down at the edge of Cordelia's desk like a good little boy and listen to them talk about nonsense things. Its not that I'm some puppy on a leash though, got that? It's just because…well, I'm not hungry. So sod off.