Summary: Takes place after The Gift . sort of a hurt/comfort story.

: Takes place after . sort of a hurt/comfort story.

Pairings: first X&S but then X/S. implied past A/S. A&S. D&S. slight A/Wes

Disclaimer: The characters belong to Joss Whedon & etc. I own nothing. Because if I did I would change a lot of the pairings in the show. grins evilly slash alert!

Some things you need to know before you read this fic:


1. When Xander proposed to Anya, and she refused thinking that it was only out of fear that they would die that day, Xander doesn't argue this time. Instead he begins to think and realizes she is probably right. They then decide to just be friends.

2. Xander and Spike learned to tolerate each other they were roommates a little more than they did in the show.

3. Umm…I'm kinda in a buffy-bashing mood while I'm writing this.

Xander Harris looked around in shock at the horrifying scene around him. There in front of him on a pile of rubble lay the dead body of one of his best friends. Buffy had sacrificed herself by jumping into the portal to stop the demons from getting through and killing all of the earth.

He looked to his left. There stood Willow and Tara, who other than a few scratches and Tara's cast being destroyed, looked like they had not been injured. Giles was fine. He had blood on his hand, but it didn't look like it was his. Xander didn't even bother to wonder about how that had happened. Near Giles lay Anya. She was gaining consciousness and seemed to be fine except for some bruises where the debris had hit her. He started towards her then stopped when he saw that Tara was already making her way over to check on her.

Xander finally made himself check on the people he knew would hurting the most. Behind him, Dawn stood on the steps sobbing and clutching at her bleeding stomach. Finally, he looked to his right and saw that Spike had collapsed on the ground and was openly crying as well. Blood covered the back of his leather duster, and his leg was twisted at a strange angle. Xander cringed in empathy just thinking about how much pain that was probably causing.

Suddenly, he snapped out of his shock and realized they needed to do something before anyone showed up. He pulled out his cell phone and handed it to Willow while trying not to look at her puffy, red eyes or completely lost look that he knew would easily send him into hysterics as well.

"Here. Call 911 and tell them there's been an accident. Tell them we were walking through a construction site to try to get out of the storm, and when we did some lightening hit the tower and a large piece broke off."

Amazing how making up stories for all those times he had to go to school with black eyes was actually coming in use now.

He paused before saying the next part. Hating how insensitive it sounded even to him.

"Oh. And if they need more details tell them one of our friends is unconscious and stuck under some rubble, so we can't tell how hurt she is. Please make sure they take a look at Dawn and Anya too."

"Sure. But what are you going to do?" Willow asked him and took the cell.

He looked over to where Spike sat. Dawn had moved to sit on the ground next to him, and they were both clinging to each other in grief.

"I need to get Spike back to the house. The sun's going to be up soon." He didn't notice the strange look Willow shot him at that statement.

"Okay. We'll meet you there after Dawn and Anya are taken care of." Willow took the phone and started dialing 911 as Xander walked over to Giles. He quickly filled him in on the story he had just told Willow, and he also gave him some ideas of how to explain everyone's injuries. Giles, coming out of his shock, finally decided to ask Xander a question.

"What are you going to be doing?"

" I'm going to take Spike back to the house before the sun comes up."

"But why?"

"He helped us fight. He got injured trying to save Dawn. I think he's earned our trust by now. So I'm going to help him out. Please take care of the girls for me."

"Of course."

Xander then moved to where Buffy's body lay. He knew what he had to do. Lifting up the light body of one of his now late best friends, he gently moved her off the pile of debris to lie on the ground. He covered her under a pile of the heavy metal making it seem as though the construction materials had fallen on top of her. No one tried to stop him. They were all too lost in their own grief to notice what was being done.

'It's a sad time when the Zeppo of the group has to take charge.' He thought bitterly to himself.

When he was finished with his morbid task he slowly made his way over to where Dawn and Spike were collapsed on the ground holding each other while they both sobbed for the lost warrior, the person they both cared about the most. He kneeled down next to them and threw an arm around both of them. After a few moments, when their sobs had died down some, he realized he had to hurry and get them out of there.

"Dawn, an ambulance is going to be here soon. I need you to go with them. Giles has a cover story, and he'll fill you in on it. The other girls are going to go with you too."

"But…But what about Spike?" Dawn managed to ask as she was now hiccupping.

"Don't worry. I'm going to take him to your house and help him bandage some of his injuries. We'll still be there when you get back."

"Thank you….Xander?"


"What's going to happen now?"

Xander looked at her, remembering now how young she truly was. He didn't want to lie to her, but the truth that it was probably going to get worst didn't seem to be the right thing to say either. Finally he found something to say that sounded appropiate.

"I don't really know, but whatever happens you can be sure we're going to take care of you. Now, you need to go over to where the others are. Alright?"

Dawn nodded and hugged Spike one more time, before hurrying over to where the others were waiting.

When she was out of hearing distance he turned his attention back to the injured blonde at his side. "So….how bad are you hurt?"

He was given no answer. 'Great. First he won't shut up, now he won't talk. Always with the extremes.'

"At least tell me if you can walk."

A long pause followed, and Xander began to think that he was being ignored again.

"I can walk," Spike quietly responded. Xander stood then helped the smaller man to his feet.

He noticed that there was a pool of blood on the ground next to his feet. Looking over Spike, he tried to figure out where that much blood could have possibly come from. The left pants leg of the vampire black jeans were now an even darker shade of black and appeared to cling to his leg which looked like it was bent at an awkward angle. The blonde tried to take a few steps only to fall backwards onto the ground.

"Bugger this." He mumbled as his broken leg was jolted by the impact.

Leaning down, the bigger man quickly but gently scooped him up into his arms.

"Hey, Whelp! Wot do you think you're doing!"

"Making sure you get to the house before the sun fries you into a little pile of ashes." He replied, easily falling into their usual pattern of bantering.

"humph." Spike replied before falling into silence once again.

Xander waited to hear the usual complaints, but when none came he began to worry. Spike was never quiet; he was always the most vocal about his emotions, no matter what they were. Xander wished he would just say something, anything, just to make the situation a little bit easier to deal with. Because with the silence he was given the chance for his brain to actually process everything that had just happened, and that was something he really didn't want.

to be continued…….

Flames will be used to heat up hot cocoa, which will then be filled with lots of marshmallows.