Passion

Disclaimers: Cowboy Bebop belongs to Bandai.

Warnings: Spike/Vicious. Sex, drugs, and murder. Very explicit slash and language.

Summary: Secret spaceships only take you so far.

Radishface

Crap, Spike thought, cracking open an eye. Hangover.

He tried to lift up his head but it was too heavy. Felt like it weighed like the entire Red Dragons space envoy. Felt like it weighed like your mom.

"Ungh." Spike's mouth parted with effort, his lips cracked open with a dry smack. Head up, finally. The room spun for a little while, and Spike let himself get thrown in the washing machine, and thought about where he was and what time it was. Vicious had gotten out of the shower a while ago and had probably left. The sheets were tangled up at the end of the bed. Spike remembered, they'd had a little more of that stuff; the jaw grazing, the stubble rasping, Vicious had stuck his finger in Spike's ass and Spike had pretended not to like it, as usual, but every time he recoiled he wanted it more. One of skankier ex-girlfriends had told him that all the guys she'd dated had wanted it up the ass. Guys were all sluts, she said. Spike made sure she got it up the ass at least once a week.

He ducked his head, felt the blood come up to his face, making his eyes water, his ears burn. He wiggled his ass into the sheets. All good times.

Yeah, good times. Spike leapt out of bed with a little too much fervor, feeling the blood flush dangerously out of his head, leaving him lightheaded and ten times more hungover. Ignoring the nausea as best he could, he headed to the bathroom and stepped in the shower.

Five months after they first fucked, when Spike had jammed Vicious's cock down his throat and had given him a throatfuck like a repressed Catholic schoolgirl auditioning for a porno, they were still fucking. Spike supposed there was something victorious about that. It was always sort of a surprise when Vicious gave him that eye, the same kind of eye he gave the motherfuckers on the street before he broke their noses or stomped their heads into the curb. Post-coital cuddling was also, surprisingly, in the picture, with Vicious's arm looped around Spike's neck and honestly, the position was sort of uncomfortable and Spike would rather be sleeping on a pillow than Vicious's muscley forearm but he supposed that this was the price he paid. Never mind that the economic transaction came full circle; Vicious's post-coital look was the same kind of look he got after completing a mission, glowering and dark and secretly smug (the secret was in the corner of his mouth, which was always imperceptibly upturned). It came full circle because that look made Spike want to fuck again.

Never mind that they weren't technically "fucking." Apparently five months wasn't enough to complete the prerequisites in sexology to move onto penetrative sex. Spike might have been ready but as previously demonstrated, avoiding the finger in the ass was like running off the graduation podium.

All these thoughts in the shower, Spike? A perverse combination of authority figures had suddenly amassed in his head—his mom, his dad, the Elders, and Vicious. You naughty boy.

His headache pulsing like his hard-on, Spike grabbed at his dick and pulled on it half-heartedly, not feeling much pleasure from the physical sensation, but losing himself in the fantasy of Vicious fucking his ass.

One exhausting orgasm later, Spike stepped out of the shower, knees weak, vision bleary, and head pounding more than ever. He wrapped a towel around his waist and started to towel his hair dry with another, heading to the living room. The sun was still out, pretty high up. There was still plenty of time left in the day. Spike picked up his phone and dialed some number.

"Spike." Vicious's voice on the other end, amusement barely disguised.

"Yo," Spike said, sort of at a loss for words. There was silence, sounds of something scratching and a faint rasp of breathing. It was nice.

"What are you doing?" Spike asked. The towel slipped off his waist. He didn't bother picking it up. There was something delightfully perverse about being naked and talking to Vicious and the other man not having a clue about it.

"Inventory."

"You write that shit down?"

"For the records."

"Forget the records," Spike said. "I've got a load of weed over here and I want you to smoke it with me."

Another pause, and then a faint click of the tongue. Faintly teasing: "this is the week for inventory, Spike. You can't just barge into Annie's and demand anything you want whenever you want."

Spike let the words "anything you want whenever you want" hang in the air for a minute, toyed with the implications of that, before gathering his breath. "Yes I fucking can," Spike protested. "Where do you think I got the weed from?"

Vicious chuckled through the phone, and Spike smiled at the sound. Halfway across town, they were smiling at each other. God, it was some stupid shit.

"I'll see you, then." Vicious hung up the phone.

No indication of anything, or whenever—but Spike knew that the other man's word was as good as the present.

Spike was in a t-shirt and sweatpants, feet bare. Vicious was in his usual outfit, slacks and white shirt and black tie, sportscoat slung sullenly over one shoulder. Spike knew that Vicious spent hours on practicing that pose, but had never caught him in the act.

"You take inventory in your suit? Don't you get hot?" Spike reached out, offered to take the coat, Like welcoming some slut into his apartment, hiding his intentions behind chivalry and coat-taking courtesy. But Vicious understood it was for show. Vicious knew he was the slut.

Vicious threw the coat on the couch, and Spike took back his hand, crossed his arms instead. Vicious walked by him without a glance, but he let his hand trail over Spike's hip as he passed. Their relationship was damn abusive sometimes.

"Get it out," Vicious said, coolly commanding, a hint of a smile underneath the frigid exterior. Spike narrowed his eyes, licked his lips, got ready to say something.

"Okay."

He walked over to the drawer he kept the stash in, unwrapped the tinfoil he kept it in. There it was, pungent and fragrant and fresh, all nicely broken up and ready to go. The smell of marijuana filled the room. "Pipe or joint?"

"Pipe," Vicious said. "I'm in a good mood today."

So Spike rounded out the filter, stuck it in the pipe, dropped the leaves in, started to salivate. Vicious produced a zippo out of his pants pocket, and Spike handed over the pipe. Guests first. Especially when you're trying to get the guest to fuck you, even if now isn't the best time.

Thirty minutes and two bowls later, Vicious and Spike were thoroughly stoned.

"Look at that light," Spike pointed out the window, at the setting sun. Goddamn, the sun was setting already. Couldn't be possible. It was like a million years had gone by, shouldn't it be a black hole by now? A ladybug with blonde hair had just settled on his head. She had told him to keep fucking as long as possible, and then had turned into water and drifted away in a water bubble, like they were in space. Oh, but they actually were in space, right? They were on Mars! Who would have thought.

"Mm," Vicious nodded sagely, eyes closed. Spike resisted the urge to giggle.

"It's like." Spike sighed. "It's like, look, it's setting, and there are the blinds."

"Yeah."

It's like it's setting, and the light comes in through the blinds. The blinds are obstacles, and the light is you. I see you sometimes, and sometimes I don't. But I'll always see you, as a whole.

"Come on, work with me here," Spike said. "I want to know what's up."

Vicious threw his head back. Spike saw a smile on his face, a genuine, zoned-out smile. He laughed out loud. Vicious paid him no regard, just cracked open one eye and smiled a little more.

"What, you can't read my mind? Isn't this the good stuff?"

"Stop thinking about tits for a minute." Spike thought about tits every once in a while. Vicious could think about all the tits and pussy he wanted to, but Spike knew. Spike was a part of it—the secret.

"I'm not thinking about tits," Vicious grumbled. "I'm thinking about the sun."

"Never thought you the hippie kind," Spike snorted. "Where's the rainbow expressway?"

"I was thinking about how to blow it up."

Spike thought about this for a minute, but the physics were too complicated. "But you'll die."

"Actually," Vicious exhaled slowly, looking very serious, "I've got this space ship."

Spike was looking at him now, this man in his apartment, in his life. Vicious was completely relaxed, a part of Spike's couch. Spike wish he could keep him there, a bit of the solar system in his room, a bit of the sun in his room, everything rotating around it and then some. Vicious and the couch melded together until the asteroids came to tear the two apart. It'd be cool.

Vicious continued, "it goes really, really fast."

"How fast." It wasn't a question.

"Pretty fast. Seats two."

"Oh." Spike thought about that, too. Nothing too complicated about the physics there. "I can't make it, actually."

"Why not?" Vicious looked up at him, mouth quirked.

"Damage control. Got to clean up what you've fucked up."

"The seat was for the tits."

Spike doubled up with laughter, holding his sides. God, it was stupid. They were so stupid. He fell over onto Vicious, his head in the other man's lap. He lay there, still laughing, but just to himself now. He buried his nose in Vicious's stomach, breathed in a little. Smelled a little sweaty, and like some sort of cologne. Smelled good.

"Hey," Vicious shook him, a little. Spike looked up. Vicious's eyes were friendly. A little bit wet.

"This," Vicious said, spreading out his arms, gesturing at the room, the sun, the blinds, Spike's sweatpants and his own tie, the ashes in the pipe, rainbow expressways and really fast space ships, the sun blowing up and blasting off out of orbit. "Too bad."

Spike's heart flipped, and he closed his eyes to hide it. Not what he expected. But still right, all the same. Too bad.

They were almost caught, once. That was when they decided they weren't going to do it again at work, or on the job. But it was hard. No pun intended.

Spike associated Vicious's post-kill look with post-coital cuddling. It was a little fucked up. But every time Vicious put a bullet in someone's head, Spike wanted to cuddle.

They knocked over an entire closet's worth of inventory when they were cuddling, once. Four thirty in the basement of Annie's shop, presumably there to stock up on magazines but pumping each other up instead, standing up against the cement walls and their pants dropped around their ankles, fisting each other and biting at each others' mouths, knowing that it only took them three minutes to get the rounds and bring them back upstairs, but today, it might take them ten or fifteen.

They slumped down to the floor afterwards, and Spike had stretched out his legs and inadvertently knocked over a stack of paint cans. Annie didn't ask any questions when they came upstairs drenched in moss green and coral pink, just handed them turpentine and sponges, and made them work for the rest of the evening. For about a week afterwards Spike associated cuddling with the smell of paint and turpentine, which made him want to vomit.

One other time they were supervising a rather dull cocaine transaction at the Four Seasons Hotel when Vicious decided to take an unannounced bathroom break. Bach's Brandenburg Concerto coming through the speakers, Spike felt technical and complicated and fiercely driven as he paced down the hallway five minutes later. He joined the other man in the handicapped stall and was slammed back against the wall as Vicious got down on his knees, unzipping his fly without undoing the button, shoving Spike's cock into his mouth, licking his balls and up his cock and shoving it down his throat and gagging. Spike knotted his hands in Vicious's hair, pushing his head back and forth, quiet grunts, wet sucking sounds, the rasping of cloth, and Bach's Brandenburg Concerto all playing together in a perverse fugue.

They were washing up, the front of Spike's pants suspiciously wet, his face flushed and rosy. Vicious's hair was tousled, his mouth red and wet. Footsteps echoed in the corridor outsides, and then Lin came in. Spike immediately put his finger in the faucet and sprayed water all over himself and Vicious.

"Sorry," he said, and reached for the paper towels. Lin raised an eyebrow and walked over to the urinals. Spike was doused with a fine mist of water down his front, and he had gotten most of Vicious's side.

Vicious's said deliberately as he left, "be careful, Spike."

Lin finished his business as Spike finished blotting the water off his pants, particularly his crotch area, and flashed Lin a practiced, sheepish grin, shrugging helplessly.

Lin only echoed Vicious's sentiment, but in a decidedly different tone of voice. "Be careful, Spike."

It was a Sunday afternoon, and Spike was in a house of pagan worship. The sky was the roof and God came through in the sun. Vicious was right next to him. They had smoked up in the house and then gone to the corner convenience store to get a few beers and were now hanging out in the basketball courts across the complex. Spike had brought his basketball but it was flat and he couldn't find the air pump and couldn't be bothered, really. It was a clear day out and Vicious's hair caught the sun, soaked the color up. The other man was sweating, that was really the only thing he was doing while sitting on the bench. Sweating and spacing out. The sweat felt like ladybugs, Spike thought, watching a bead of sweat hang on his eyelash, wiggling precariously, as if it were deciding whether it wanted to take the jump, make the fall.

Spike hadn't gotten trashed in a while, hadn't gone out in a while. Life was full of inventorying, dull cocaine deals, and Vicious, always a phone call away, and more recently, within arm's reach most of the time. It was too bad.

He was sailing now, bugs crawling all over his face, mostly in the downward trajectory, ticking down his neck and gluing themselves to his shirt. He was sailing in that spaceship that went really, really fast, on his way to the sun. A million years passed by and he flew over Earth, chunks of it floating like asteroids, land pockmarked with asteroid scars, Venus, terraformed pockets of land and dandelion spokes floating in the air—he soared past Mercury and imagined that dinosaurs still lived there, and ended up in the sun. God, it was so hot outside, who the fuck thought it would be a good idea to come out on a Sunday afternoon and sit in the middle of the sun in the middle of the basketball court?

History went by. He had a bomb with him, and history didn't matter. Everything was moving in robot time, slow motion time, as he dropped it into the sun, watching the black thing disappear as it was engulfed by fire and waves. The sun shook and spun and for a moment, all of its movement belonged to Spike—all of its energy and all of its chaos and fusion and heat and turmoil, all of it belonged to Spike because he was the one who destroyed it. Never underestimate how good it feels to own the sun, Spike thought. It will overwhelm you.

I have to get away before it explodes, he thought. I have to drive as far as possible! So he hopped back in his spaceship—

It was hot outside. Bugs were crawling in his pants now. His crotch was sweating. His thighs were sticky, and Vicious was silent beside him.

He hopped back in his spaceship, and started to drive. But it was too late, because the sun had already become a black hole, sucking everything into it, including Spike's really, really fast space ship. He put his pedal to the floor and pushed the nitro booster button but nothing worked, really. Time was getting stretched out, slowed down. He felt long, jumbled, reckless, and couldn't move his legs. He pushed every button in his spaceship and there were infinite rooms with infinite buttons in each one. They were all the color of the sun.

It was all sort of pointless. Spike decided just to go with it.

"Hey." An elbow in his arm, scattering the bugs away, moving him back into two planes of reality. "Hey, Spike."

"What," Spike wheezed, still sweating, sweat coming out of his eyes, it was so hot outside.

"You okay?" Vicious's voice came from a million years away, somewhere past Mercury, by the sun. "Hey, talk to me."

"Yeah," Spike said, imagining Vicious's hands around his waist, pulling him out of the wrecked spaceship. He sighed.

"What happened?" Vicious asked, his voice a little clearer now. Spike was coming back. He lifted up his head. Somehow it had gotten thrown back against the bench. Guess he hadn't been paying much attention.

"Bad trip," Spike said, opening his eyes. "Didn't last."

...

end

...

A/N: Thanks to everyone who has been with me from beginning to end. You guys make writing worthwhile, and I have to admit, if I didn't have so much encouragement, I wouldn't have been able to finish this. The story actually took quite a different turn than originally planned, but I'm quite happy with this result, even if I know some people might be disappointed by its ambiguous ending.

I was thinking that I wouldn't be able to finish this series—I had started writing it while I was in a very tumultuous stage in my life, and harnessed a lot of that energy into beginning this story. Since then my life has taken a rather different tone and for many months, I tried to begin the last part of this, but wasn't able to capture the original tone of the piece. In the end I just decided to go for it and go with the different vision. I apologize to readers if they were thrown off by the turn this last part has taken. My "newer" tone of writing is also apparent in EWHPTIV to Hacker Joe and Miss Universe on Judgment Day, which are pieces I think are much ambiguous, darker, and… well, weirder. I've always wanted to utilize the science fiction of Cowboy Bebop much more, and believe that scifi elements can be incorporated into the series' fic while still retaining the integrity of the series.

At any rate, I wanted to pull S & V out of the cigarettes and boozy world that they had been in the last few chapters, and give them a new environment to play in. 

Feedback is always appreciated, and I really look forward to anything you have to say about how to improve my writing. Thanks to everyone again who has been reading this from the beginning, you have my eternal appreciation. 