Warnings: M/M relationship, mention of kinky toys
Summary: It's Christmas, Xander has finally gotten Spike to stop being too bad to be his boyfriend and the couple are celebrating their first Christmas together when Xander gets a visit from a social worker. And after learning about a sibling he never knew he had he's now got a baby to take care of. But will Spike stick around to help?
"No Spike put that bulb over there. You're grouping a bunch of blue together."
"Oh bloody hell, why don't you get your capable arse over here an do it yourself. I'll put up the mistletoe."
"You are not putting that up and insist I come over there and kiss you every 10 seconds."
"I'm hurt luv, I wouldn't do that….I'd just wait till you walked under it every time and OW no throwing the candy canes!"
Xander heaved an exasperated sigh; Christmas decorating was supposed to be fun and exciting. But he and Spike had very different ideas on where things should go so they were clashing more often than not. They were supposed to have an even spread of colors on the tree but Spike seemed content to group colors all in one area. At least the lights looked really good. Not only did they cover the tree in strings of lights, the windows facing the road were all bordered in lights and the mantle above the fireplace was covered in lights, illuminating the many pictures of the Scooby gang. All the regular lamp lights and overhead lights were turned off and the room was lit only by Christmas lights and Xander thought it looked fantastic. It really made the whole room look warm and inviting, just the way it should be during Christmas. Xander hung onto the spare red glittery garland around his neck and flipped the fuzzy ball of the Santa hat out of his face as he watched Spike attach a few last ornaments. It was too bad he couldn't share something like this with a family.
Xander knew it wasn't possible. He loved Spike very much, was in love with the vampire, and it wasn't possible to have a family with Spike for many reasons. Even if he could he wouldn't want to have settled down with a woman or anything. Spike was his, that's all there was to it.
Spike got down off the step stool where he'd been putting the topper on the tree, "there, all finished luv. Wot do you think?"
Xander took a step back to look at the tree. They never had real trees; he didn't like the thought of killing a tree just to have decorations for Christmas. So, the fake tree came out and was assembled. They managed to arrange the branches so there were no holes showing the aluminum core and it seemed they'd done a good job placing ornaments to cover up any other gaps. "I think it looks fantastic!" Xander grinned and that caused Spike to smile back.
"Right, your turn. You put the icicles on." Spike said as he grabbed the boxes of glittery icicles to hand to the boy.
"Nu uh, your gona help me put these on." Xander took one box and left the other in Spike's hand. The vampire rolled his eyes a bit but would deny the boy nothing. Together they pulled slivery icicles out and spread them over the branches of the tree, making sure they hung down like real icicles, when there was a knock on the door. Xander was on the step stool with Spike behind him in case the boy fell, "Spike would you get that? Might be your blood supply."
"Right, I'm on it. Be back in a mo'," Spike said as he pinched Xander's ass, making the boy jerk slightly, before striding over to the door. He opened it and was surprised by a middle aged man in a business suit carrying what looked like a baby carrier. That's a funny looking blood supply; the baby was no more than a snack really. "Can I help you?"
"Alexander LaVelle Harris?" The man asked in a strict, to the point, monotone voice.
"That'd be me!" Xander exclaimed as he bounced over to Spike's side, "can I help you?"
"Mr. Harris may I come in? This is about your elder brother Robert James Harris." The man explained as he pulled out a folder to confirm his facts.
"Brother…? I don't have a brother, I'm an only child." Xander explained in a confused voice, brow furrowing as he tried to remember any time his parents mentioned and older brother.
"I'm afraid you do, Mr. Harris, I'm afraid he left as soon as he was old enough from your parents home and never bothered to contact them again. May I come in?" The man asked again. Xander looked at Spike; Spike's nose knew when someone was lying and when they weren't.
When he got a nod from Spike Xander nodded as well, "sure, come on in Mr…?"
"Rochester, thank you Mr. Harris." The man picked up the baby carrier and walked in when the two men stepped aside. He sat said baby carrier to the side and began immediately when Spike and Xander took a seat together on the couch. "Your elder brother I'm afraid suffered an accident. He and his wife were on a train headed for northern California for the holidays when the train derailed and killed many people, your elder brother and his wife included. Their child survived the crash, we are happy to report. I am here to see if you would be willing to take the child in. They did not have wills made out, and so there were no instructions as to who should take the child. I realize this is sudden but-"
"Sudden? This is like the a-bomb." Xander exclaimed, trying to keep his voice down so as not to disturb the sleeping baby. He had a brother that he never knew about! And just as fast as he found he had a brother he lost him, and his crap parents never mentioned it. Probably because his brother was smart and got the hell out as soon as he could. "I…I can't take care of a baby, I don't know how."
"I understand, sir. I have already visited your parents to see if they would take the child, but to be honest I wouldn't leave the baby with them even if they were willing. It seems they've become alcoholics." The man mentioned as if it were news.
"Oh, they've always been like that, mate." Spike piped in, his eyes never leaving the baby in the carrier. That worried Xander. He'd just gotten to a point with Spike where they were comfortable with their relationship and everything it included; he didn't want to scare Spike away with a baby.
"Well, be that as it may I'm afraid you are the only person left to take the child. Your brother's wife had no siblings and her parents are too elderly to care for a baby properly. It is either here or the child will have to go into foster care." The man again checked his notes and information in the file about the child, going through and making sure he had all the forms that would need to be signed in order for Xander to take custody of the baby.
And good job on the guilt trip Mr. Rochester, Xander thought, I couldn't feel worse right now if you tried to heap more guilt on me. "What's the baby's name?"
The man looked up at Xander, noticing the man was close to caving as it was. He decided to deal the final blow that might get Xander to cave completely and take the baby in. No one wanted to see children have to go into foster care. "He named her Elizabeth."
"That was our grandma's name." Xander mumbled as he stared at the small baby in the carrier. When Spike turned to look at the boy he elaborated further, "My dad's mother, she would come around a lot with lots of baked cookies and stuff. I loved it when she'd come over cause she brought happiness into the house. When she died it was the only time I cried for a family member…I wanted to name a daughter after her."
"Would you take her in, Mr. Harris?" The man asked, setting the papers in front of Xander. Spike saw Xander very nearly ready to cave
"A baby is a big responsibility, Xan. Expensive too, you know." Spike mumbled softly. He wasn't quite trying to discourage Xander, but a baby was a big responsibility.
Xander took a long moment to respond. He looked at the little girl in the carrier, they had absolutely nothing for babies here and he knew absolutely nothing about caring for babies, but between him and Spike they should be able to figure it out. "I know…and I make enough to cover it."
"You would also get a stipend from the state for Elizabeth's upkeep; to help with bills you will incur when caring for her." Mr. Rochester mentioned.
Xander smiled softly in Spike's direction, "See, the money thing should be covered." He then turned back to the man "I'll take her."
The man nodded, smiling for the first time, "that is good news, Mr. Harris. I will want you both to sign on the marked lines and-"
Spike frowned when he heard that, "hang on a tick, both of us?"
"Yes, it is obvious you two are in a relationship." This caused both men to just look at each other. "While it is not a problem I will want you both to sign the papers to take custody over her, in case something happens to one of you the other will be here to take care of her."
Xander nodded, completely understanding, and turned to Spike to see if the vampire was willing to do this. Spike took a moment to look at the papers and at the baby in the carrier. If he didn't do this Xander may be very disappointed in him. Of course it wasn't exactly his goal in life to impress everyone. But Xander meant a lot to him and he couldn't help the swell of hope in his undead heart at the thought of raising a child. It was something he'd felt he wanted to do even after he'd been turned. Sure, for the most part he wanted to have a bloody good time and slaughter innocence. But to have someone to take care of, a child that depended on him and loved him unconditionally, how could he refuse that? It was his MO after all. Love's Bitch indeed. And Spike would have it no other way.
"I'll sign it." Spike stated simply. Xander let out a breath he didn't know he'd been holding and Spike directed a soft smile in his direction. Together they took the pen and signed the papers to take custody of Elizabeth.
When all the papers were signed to Mr. Rochester's satisfaction he took them back and put them in the file before standing. "Thank you very much, Mr. Harris. No one likes to see children who have to go through the foster care system. Any time we can place them with family members the better off they'll be. I hope that you will find the time to get her the essentials amid the Christmas chaos. A social worker will be by a few times to ensure you are caring for her properly but after that you shouldn't hear from them again. Again thank you for your time."
Xander got up to show the man out while Spike had a chance to look at the little girl. He snorted a bit to himself, he wasn't poncy like his sire and take to a baby so easily. That was Xander's child now, not his. He just signed the papers to make Xander happy.
But she was a cutie, what with the little bonnet and little baby-doll dress. He leaned forward and unbuckled her from the carrier and picked her up. She was starting to wake when Xander was showing the man to the door so he figured she'd get fussy soon. "Guess you are a little cutie, aye? Maybe it won't be so bad. Corrupt you to like Punk music." Spike looked around, "better start playin some Greatful Dead around here, get you to rebelling against that early on yeah?" The little girl looked at Spike and chewed on her finger a bit, speaking baby speak that no one could really understand.
Spike started to tickle her sides a bit and got her giggling. The giggling was contagious because he started to smile. He leaned in and blew a little on her stomach, blowing raspberries on her stomach. This made her giggle even louder. She waived her little arms and kicked her little legs, either trying to get away from the tickly sensation or trying to get more, Spike wasn't sure.
Spike was startled when someone cleared their throat over his shoulder. He looked up and saw Xander watching him with a very content smile. Spike cleared his on throat and put the little dress back down, "there was some foreign matter on her abdomen, I was just inspecting it. Just a bit of dirt I think." Spike carefully placed her back in the carrier where she looked up adoringly at the blonde man.
"Uh huh, sure thing Mr. Softie-vamp. Don't worry I won't tell anyone. Hey, how about we turn off all the lights and clean up and run out to get some essentials for Eliza." Xander leaned over the couch and smiled at the little girl, making all sorts of goofy faces that made the baby giggle.
"Suppose I could go out with you, luv. You know, just to fight off the wankers that'll be out Christmas shoppin." Spike stood and went off into the bedroom to get his coat. Xander was so glad that he and Spike had moved into a bigger apartment at first, one with two bedrooms, before starting their relationship. That meant they had an extra bedroom perfect for Eliza.
Xander leaned over to pick the little girl up into his arms and smiled, "Something tells me your gona be attached to Spike eventually. He's a loveable guy huh? Yeah, I'm obsessed with him." The little girl started to talk baby talk, as if agreeing with Xander or explaining she was already in love with Spike. Xander carefully buckled Eliza back up into the carrier, which she did not like. Obviously she enjoyed being in someone's arms. Xander smiled at her, "Don't worry, it's just for now. We'll get you out of there eventually. We're gona be going for a car ride!"
When Xander explained what they were doing in an excited voice the little girl squealed. Xander lifted the carrier easily and smiled when Spike appeared in the door way, trench coat in hand, "ready to go luv?"
Xander smiled, the onset of a new Christmas was going to be the start of a new life for them. Somehow the introduction of this little baby made Xander's life feel…complete…like he had a family now, or the beginnings of one. "Yeah, let's go! I think we can get a bit of Christmas shopping done too while we're baby shopping."
"Suppose I best not fight it yeah? Gona choke this goody goody stuff down me throat eventually right?"
"That's right Spike, might as well accept it now and move on cause one way or another I'm corrupting you to be a good vampire for me." Xander explained as he went to the door. Spike slung his coat on and then opened the door for Xander as he had his hands full with a baby carrier.
"Bloody hell, the things I do for love." Xander turned when Spike said that and smiled, laying a kiss on the vampire's lips and Spike had to make a slight correction. He wasn't Love's Bitch anymore really, just Xander's bitch. But that was okay too.
"Spike we are not getting her a little t-shirt that says 'Sid was here'." Xander said as he looked at the little baby shirt Spike was holding up.
"C'mon, luv! Its totally cute." Spike said as he looked down at the little shirt. They'd already gotten a supply of disposable diapers, a diaper bag, bottles, formula and were now shopping for little clothes for Eliza. They'd ordered a crib and Xander couldn't help but get this little chest of drawers that doubled as a changing table on top. On their way by Xander grabbed other essentials like baby powder, wipes, and other paraphernalia that they'd need for Eliza's every day care.
Xander looked at Spike who decided to get out the big guns and turned his pout on. Xander groaned, "Oh, alright. We can get the shirt, but no more Sex Pistols stuff okay? I mean I'm sure they've got Ramones stuff too, and what about The Clash? I like The Clash."
Spike stared at Xander as he named groups Spike enjoyed listening to, "I love you…"
Xander giggled a little as Spike said that. "I love you too Spike, now we still need some more clothes and we need to pick up the furniture." Xander grabbed a few more outfits off the racks, cute little purple and pink dresses. He also got her a few little outfits with Spongebob on them, figuring the little girl would be into Spongebob eventually. They picked up little shoes and little socks before picking up a few toys. She probably wouldn't be too much into toys just yet, just a few stuffed animals and a few teething rings.
After Spike had picked out a few outfits that would totally punk the little girl up he leaned in to Xander and kissed his cheek, "Why don't I go deal with the furniture an meet you at the entrance yeah?"
Xander thought about that for a moment and nodded with a smile, "Alright, that'll be alright." Xander reached into his pocket and passed off the cash for the dresser/changing table and the crib. He watched Spike disappear into the crowd and smiled, even though Spike tried to look like a badass he knew deep inside Spike was a great guy.
Xander picked out a few more things, a stroller and some bedding for the crib, before heading for the checkout. He smiled at the girl in the baby seat, "We are so gona spoil you huh?" He reached in to tickle her sides a bit, "yes we are, yes we are, we're gona spoil you!" He grinned as the little girl giggled and kicked her little feet. It didn't matter if he had 0 experience, they'd figure it out and love the little girl as if she were they're own.
As Xander reached the check out he put everything on the belt, except the box that held the stroller, and waited to pay he heard a very familiar voice, "Xander?"
He looked around and saw Willow running over to him, Buffy not far behind. He smiled and waved at his best girl friends. "Hey guys, what's up?"
"Xander, you didn't tell us you were coming out tonight, and I don't mean the coming out like out of the closet or anything, not that you'd need to do that since we already know and everything, but I mean like coming out to shop and-"
Xander smiled as he held up a hand,"Willow, breath."
"Oh, yeah I have to do that. Anyway, you didn't tell us you were going out. We thought Spike was gona keep you in doors at all cost." Willow asked as she looked around for said vampire, so far neither girl noticed the baby in the carriage.
"Speaking of blood-breath where is he?" Buffy asked, looking around for Spike as well.
"Oh we had to come out to go baby shopping. He's getting the crib and changing table out to the car." Xander smiled as if it were completely normal to talk about baby shopping.
And as if a light bulb had been turned on over said baby both girls noticed Eliza, "Xander! Where did you get a baby?" Willow exclaimed, the loud noise causing Eliza to start crying. "Oh my gosh I'm so sorry!"
Xander smiled at her but picked Eliza up out of her carrier and held her, trying to sooth the little girl from crying. "Well it's a really long story, girls. You see it seems I had an older brother and…something happened to him. A guy from social services showed up and told me my parents weren't willing to take the little girl in, not that he'd leave the baby with them ya know. So he asked me and I and Spike signed the papers for her so now she's ours."
"Oh my gosh, Xander! Having a baby is a big responsibility." Willow said as she watched him sooth baby Eliza from crying. He seemed to be very good at taking care of the baby.
"I know, but ya know I couldn't say no… I just couldn't. Besides you totally should have seen Spike with her. He's a natural. He tried to act all tough but really he's a big softy underneath." Xander grinned at them as he carefully sat her back in the seat and buckled her in.
Buffy smiled as she watched him care for the little baby, "Spike isn't the only natural, I think." This caused Xander to smile at her and she nodded, "So, guess that means we'll have to do a bit more Christmas shopping so the new baby has presents on Christmas day too. Come on Wills, lots of shopping to do!"
"Yeah, I'm coming." Willow turned back to Xander and smiled, "hey if you need anything or if Spike needs anything just let us know okay? And tell him we said hi!" As Xander nodded Willow ran off to follow Buffy. He turned to the checkout lady and smiled as she started to ring him up. The total came to a high number, but Xander didn't worry too much about it. Like the social worker said they'd probably get a little money from the state to help pay for bills for Eliza until she was 18 so that'd cover some of the expenses. But still, Xander didn't mind because he was spending money on his daughter. She wasn't his daughter by blood, but she was his daughter now and he'd treat her as such. She deserved that much.
Xander paid and was exiting the store when he saw Spike just finishing tying the new crib and changing table/dresser onto the roof of his Desoto so there would be room inside for everything else and the baby. Before going any further Xander smiled and whispered, "He is just the sweetest man alive…"
Spike was able to pick up the whisper on the wind, his sensitive vampire ears picking up anything in the area, and he allowed himself a smile. So what if it was poncy, so what if he might be doing goody goody things for Xander. It was for Xander, and now for Eliza too, so that made it okay.
Spike tapped out a cigarette as Xander walked over. Xander grabbed it out of his mouth before he could light it, "Sorry Spike, but you can't smoke around the baby okay? It could really harm her."
Spike gave a long-suffered groan before putting the cigarette back, "oh, alright. I'll wait till we're home an go outside alright?"
"Remember we've got that nice little balcony off the master bedroom, you can go out there for your smokes now, it's perfect!" Xander took a moment to imagine a shirtless, just had sex, Spike step out onto the small balcony with wrought iron railing for a post coital smoke….Guh, yeah that was a nice picture, let's make that happen.
In truth the balcony doubled as a fire escape, but it could be romantic too. Spike thought about what Xander said and decided it was the best he was going to get without having to go all the way to the lobby of the apartment building and go outside for the cigarette, "Your right, luv. Just a few feet to be outside an smoke. No problem. You sure I can't convince you to do it out there?"
Xander nearly choked as he started loading bags into the car, "What! No! Not out where everyone could see! That's against the law you know!"
"Only against the law if we get caught," Spike said smoothly as he pressed Xander against the car, pressing his very hard groin into Xander's.
"Spike, we'd have the neighbors across the street calling the cops on us for indecent exposure." Xander tried to sound serious but it was hard when Spike was pressing his hard dick into his thigh, guh!
"Oh alright, ruin all my fun…" Spike grumbled as he helped get the bags in the car. He and Xander got the stroller out of its box, thankfully it was the snap together kind, and got it into the trunk. They figured they might as well leave it in there because they'd be using it whenever they went anywhere. The box Xander flattened and folded up to put in the trunk too, just in case they had to bring it back because something didn't work.
When everything was stored away Xander pressed Spike against the car before he could get in the driver's seat. "Spike, you've been like a really great boyfriend through all this." Spike gave him a look for using 'boyfriend', "Oh alright, lover. But… when that guy showed up talking about a baby I had this feeling in the pit of my stomach that you were gona leave because a baby is a big responsibility. But you stuck with me and signed those papers too and… ya know I can't tell you how grateful I am. I love you, Spike. And when Eliza showed up…I dunno it felt like our little family was complete."
Spike listened to Xander talk and he slowly smiled. He put his arms around Xander's neck and rested his forehead against the boy's, "Love you too, Xan. Can't get rid of me that easy, yeah? Told you when I moved in I'm like a Pit Bull."
"Actually I think phrase was 'Love's bitch and proud of it'." Xander smiled as Spike snickered. He leaned forward a few inches and pressed his lips against Spike's, "Let's get home. After we set up the crib so Eliza can sleep I'll do whatever you want us to do in the bedroom tonight."
"I'll 'old you to that, pet." Spike said as he pulled away to get into the driver seat. Xander made sure they didn't leave anything behind in the carriage and little Eliza was strapped safely in the back seat before getting into the passenger seat. "Let's 'ope that the crib innit too hard to put together, yeah?"
After convincing Xander that vampire strength was better than mortal strength Spike was able to get the dresser/changing table up into the apartment by himself without any hindrances. Really, it wasn't too big but it was a little bulky and heavy. Spike didn't have any problems carrying it himself inside. It was set off to the corner, the box with the crib in the center, and the baby setting off to the side so she could watch while she chewed on one of the teething rings just to have something to do. Xander brought in the bags and sat them down inside the room, "Alright that should be all of it. So, let's get the crib together so she has somewhere to sleep then call it a night?"
Spike nodded in agreement, "You got a baby monitor right?"
"You know I did," Xander smiled, holding up the package that had the monitor in it. They'd set that up too and retire. The crib turned out to be in more pieces then they thought, and the instructions read like stereo instructions. They turned the diagrams around and upside down trying to figure out how the parts were supposed to go.
After a long moment of looking at the diagram and looking at the parts Spike pointed, "oh wait here's the ends, yeah? An there they are, right so we lay one of those out an start attachin the sides an bottom to it."
Xander blinked and stared at the diagram a moment longer before, "OOOOOooohhhhhhhh, I get it!" Xander pulled one of the end pieces over. The end piece consisted of two long legs and a slatted headboard. The wheels went into the legs so the crib could be mobile and they started to assemble it piece by piece. The moveable side railing, the bottom, and the fixed railing were attached to the first end piece easily. It turned out to be an easier job with two people than it would have been if it was just one of them doing it all. Spike would hold a piece while Xander secured it with his power drill. Before they knew it they were assembling the wheels for the second end piece and aligning it with what was already assembled.
"Right, I'll hold it, you secure it." Spike said as he picked up the end piece and held it up to the assembly.
"Right, our current strategy seems to be working, Mr. Spock." Xander held up the power drill and got to work.
Spike rolled his eyes a bit, "Bloody geek," and held the pieces together.
"Your bloody geek," Xander said enthusiastically. Before long the crib was completely assembled, on its wheels, and being fitted with a mattress. Xander had fitted the mattress with a sheet and put the little pillow in the bed too. He sat the stuffed animals inside while Spike fitted the little carousel above the bed.
Xander looked up, not remembering getting that. Spike shrugged, "Babies like carousels." Spike flipped a switch and the carousel began to turn slowly and play a soft lullaby.
"She's gona love it," Xander said as he watched it turn. "I'll get Eliza, why don't you set up the monitor." Xander turned without making sure Spike would do it and pulled Eliza out of her crib.
Spike looked up from getting the packaging open, "Uh oh, smells like someone needs a changing."
Xander gave her a sniff and scrunched up his face, "Peeeeuuuuuu I guess so!" He grinned at the grinning little girl, "who's a dirty girl! Who's a dirty girl!" She giggled and kicked her feet as she was taken over to the changing table, "Ready to give this thing its christening honey?" The little girl grinned and Xander began the process of changing her. The large package of disposable diapers was placed by the table, the baby powder and wipes on the changing table, and last but not least Xander got out one of the onesies to put her in for the night.
Spike walked over to watch, chances were he'd have to do this too eventually. It was kinda good that he was stuck inside during the day while Xander was working. It would ensure that the baby was never left alone and that was a good thing. "So, wot is all the fuss about." Xander pulled the diaper open and Spike saw the mess and jumped away, the smell invading his sensitive nose almost immediately, "OH MY GOD!"
Xander looked back at Spike, "oh don't be so dramatic, it's just poopy." He smiled at Eliza, "isn't that right, just stinky poopy." Eliza giggled and tried to chew on her toes while Xander lifted her up a bit and wiped her clean with the wipes. He dropped them into the diaper and rolled it up and tossed it into the bin by the table. He got a fresh diaper from the bag and slid it under her before splashing on some baby powder and secured the diaper around her, "there we go, all changed and clean." He leaned forward to blow on her stomach like Spike had earlier, sending Eliza into new fits of giggles.
The onesie was a little difficult to get on what with Eliza's kicking and giggling but once he had it on her legs the rest was easy. He snapped the pajamas up once they were on and carried her to the crib where he laid her down. The little girl yawned cutely and wiggled until she seemed to get comfortable. She then looked up at her two new fathers, as Spike had joined Xander by the crib, expectantly. Her little brown eyes looking from Spike, to Xander, and then back to Spike as if waiting for something.
Xander made the discovery, "Oh! She must want a song or something, she must have been sung to before." Xander then turned his gaze on Spike.
Noticing both pairs of brown eyes in the room were on him Spike stepped back, "oh no, no I am not singing to her whelp. You do it, she's your niece."
"Spiiiiiike, I have a horrible singing voice. I've heard you in the shower singing Sex Pistols; you have a great singing voice." Xander's praise did two things, first Spike found himself indescribably pleased that Xander found his singing voice pleasing. Second it also embarrassed him because he'd been caught during a private time. "I don't want to torture her with my horrible singing voice."
Spike opened his mouth to protest but his gaze was drawn down to the baby in the crib, patiently waiting for someone to sing to her. It was always brown eyes, always the warm chocolate gaze to bring him to his knees. Drusilla, Angel, Xander, now Eliza. He saw the future as she grew; she'd have him wrapped around her little finger just as Xander did now. Not that he'd complain much about it, but damn it he had to win one of these little arguments eventually right?
Heaving a long-suffering sigh Spike turned and leaned forward a bit. Because of the holidays he decided a Christmas song would be appropriate:
"Chestnuts roasting on an open fire…
Jack frost nipping at your nose…" Spike reached forward and tickled her little nose, causing her to giggle and rub at her own nose.
"Yuletide carols being sung by a choir,
And folks dressed up like Eskimos.
Everybody knows a turkey and some mistletoe,
Help to make the season bright.
Tiny tots with their eyes all aglow,
Will find it hard to sleep tonight." Eliza began to suck her thumb cutely while Spike sung, slowly becoming tired.
"They know that Santa's on his way,
He's bringing lots of toys an goodies on his sleigh.
And every mother's child is gona spy,
To see if reindeer really know how to fly.
And so I'm offering this simple wish,
To kids from one to ninety-two.
Although it's been said many times, many ways,
Merry Christmas to you…"* As Spike finished the last line Eliza's eyes closed and her sucking slowed. Spike stood up, something inside him touched deeply that he'd brought comfort to such a small being. That such a small being found warmth and happiness at his words and trusted him enough to fall asleep.
Even though this child was not of his loins Spike felt something deep inside him that he thought died a long time ago, something that he never thought he'd experience as long as he unlived, he knew what it was like to be a father. He now knew the feeling Angel had when he'd managed to calm his own son for the first time just by showing his game face; he now had something Angel had. And yet…Spike felt no desire to gloat, no desire to rub it in Angel's face, no desire to start the 'anything you can do I can do better' shtick. He had no desire to do anything except care for this small child who showed such unconditional trust in him.
Xander had an idea what was going through Spike's mind while watching Eliza sleep, something Xander himself felt the first moment he'd held the little bundle of joy. It may not be his child by blood, but that didn't mean she couldn't be his child in all the other important ways. To nurture and care for a little being and help it grow into a successful young adult, there was no greater reward in life in Xander's opinion.
Xander knew that Spike was venerable right now, exposed and experience feelings that were all so new. He slowly stepped forward and slid his arms around Spike from behind, soothing the troubled vampire. Spike leaned back against the hard, construction worker's body and smiled a bit, "She's cute, innit she?"
Xander nodded with an mmhmm. He leaned his head against Spike's and started to speak, "I know you think your sacrificing your badass reputation for her right now but think of it this way: One day she's gona be a teenager going to high school and meeting boys. And when that day comes you'll get your badass rep back because you'll get to threaten dismemberment to any boy that comes within 10 feet of her." Spike gave him a look, as if he hadn't thought of that part. "Like my mom always says, girls are sometimes harder to raise. See, with boys you only have to worry about the one penis and where it goes, with girls you have to worry about all the penises in the world."
Spike gave that some thought before smiling at Xander, "your right luv, think I just found meself a new goal in unlife."
*(Disclaimer: I don't own the song The Christmas Song. I actually don't know who first wrote it but it's been covered by so many people. I know I don't own it. No money was made from its use here at all, so don't sue.)
"She is just so cute!" Buffy said as she held the little baby, feeding her the formula in the bottle. Eliza had taken pretty well to everyone, even Giles. She'd been slightly wary when going to Buffy; maybe it was possible she could sense Buffy was the slayer. But that was very unlikely, as Giles had said. Either way, Eliza warmed up to her the moment she had a bottle in her hand.
"Who knew you had a brother!" Willow said as she looked over the papers Xander had brought to her. The social worker Mr. Rochester had dropped off a pack of papers for the baby. The records included birth certificate, death certificates of both parents, Xander's copy of his custody papers with both his and Spike's signature, and medical records for the baby. Spike had confided in him that while everything looked legit it could be possible this was all a ruse to pawn a baby off on them. So Xander's paranoia kicked up and he had Willow doing her hacky-computery thing to make sure it was legit.
Not only did Willow find the obituaries for Xander's brother, she also found police reports and notes where the biological parents were contacted and notes about contacting Xander in regards to taking in the orphan baby. Everything checked out, and so Xander could go home and tell Spike everything was legitimate and Eliza was his niece.
Giles took a few steps from behind the counter of The Magic Box and came over to examine the child in Buffy's arms, "Are you sure you are prepared for such a responsibility Xander? A baby can be quite troublesome."
"Yeah G-man, I know the decision was sudden but I know I'm ready. Besides I've got Spike to help me-"
"And us!" Buffy chimed in, "If you ever need a baby sitter I and Wills will totally be there."
"And the girls, I think we've got it covered." Xander walked over and got the baby bag he'd left by the door and sat it on the table, "Besides, the social worker said that a stipend would be sent every month to help with the bills a baby racks up. He was impressed we got everything like we did last night."
"I think it's a great thing." Anya said from behind the counter, "A baby will make you more mature, unless Spike eats her. To some vampires that's a delicacy you know."
"B-but Spike wouldn't do that…would he?" Willow turned the full force of her puppy eyes on Xander.
"Thanks Ahn. And no, I don't think Spike would ever do that. You didn't see him last night, he-"
"-ate a whole orphanage of kids once you know!" Anya butted in, "slaughtered every last one of them. Whatever he was doing maybe he was eyeing her for a tasty snack."
"No, I was going to say he sung to her last night." Xander's statement was met with silence, especially from Anya. He turned to her then, "And Ahn, I'll have you know the only reason he did that was because Drusilla was goading him to do it."
"Slaughtering little kids for the love of your life. Romantic…in a sick-psychopath I-wana-eat-your-liver kinda way." Buffy said as she sat the empty bottle down and lifted Eliza to burp her.
"And that's why he will always be known as Love's Bitch." Anya concluded before grabbing the stack of receipts from the previous day, "Now, if you'll excuse me I have business type stuff to do."
"Guys, Spike sung to her…" Xander's statement was met with blank stares. He waived his hands, "Guys, he sung to her! He never even sings to me! He saves it for in the shower when he thinks he's alone."
Willow raised her hand, "Oh oh, you mean he is totally forsaking his badass-ness and evil-guy ways for a little baby! That is so cute! I knew deep down, beneath all the 'fucks' and 'sod-offs' and what not there was a really caring great guy inside."
Xander smiled, his point finally being made, "Exactly! Oh but don't mention any of it okay? If he knows I told you or if he thinks he's being made fun of because of it he'll totally revert into badass mean-guy. I want him to be happy and open in our home, especially now that we have Eliza with us."
Buffy got up, Eliza still in her arms, and came over to Xander. "Don't worry Xan, we won't say anything about it to him. It's a really good thing you two have such a great relationship. For Eliza's sake its best he continues on this opening up thing. It's probably best we keep Eliza a secret from the demon community as much as possible, especially the fact Spike is one of her guardians."
"Yeah, for more reasons than one. If any of Spike's enemies in the town found out the shit would hit the fan." Xander said. As he did both he and Buffy heard little farting noises.
Buffy looked down at Eliza where the noises originated, "Um…I think it just did." They were hit by the scent next and Buffy held Eliza out for Xander to take, "At least she's healthy." Xander smiled as he took the baby, no amount of poopy diapers or spit up was going to deter him. He was a dad, something he always wanted to be.
Spike looked down at the baby he was about to change. She was starting to get fussy so he had to be quick about getting over his squeamishness. Xander and the girls had gone out to do some quick Christmas shopping so the baby had presents too. He'd bribed Spike with talk of a present when he got home and he had Spike hook, line, and sucker. All Spike had heard was prezzie and he was ready to agree to anything. He really ought to work on that one track mind of his…
"Right, just poop. No big deal right, bit?" Spike started to disrobe Eliza from the outfit she was in. Xander had put her in this cute little purple baby doll outfit and it was so nice Spike didn't want it to get dirty. So he pulled the little dress off of her and sat it to the side before pulling open the sides of the diaper. He pulled it open and was assaulted with the rancid smell of poop. He turned his head to the side to press his nose into his shoulder, "oh dear lord," and the fact that Spike completely ignored his Giles moment proved just how stinky it was. Then again his senses were better than a human's so it stank more to him than it would to Xander or the girls.
Spike played out what Xander did last night in his head; wipe her clean, remove soiled diaper, put new one under her, apply baby powder, and close. Right he could do this. Spike opened the container of wipes and pulled one out. "At least things are disposable now-a-days, luv. Back in my day you used these linen diapers that you had to wash." Spike carefully wiped her clean, making sure to get everywhere and put the dirty wipe inside the old diaper. "Now that was a messy job, aye?" He pulled out a new one and replaced the dirty with the new before rolling up the old one and tossing it in the bin. "Right, hard part over pet." Spike looked around and spotted the baby powder before splashing on enough to cover her then folded the diaper over and located the two adhesive strips to secure the diaper. After he finished he went through the drawers looking for one of her pajamas.
Locating one of her pajama sets he got her in, snapped her up and smiled. "Well, suppose tha' wasn't so hard, yeah?" The little girl squealed and giggled as he picked her up. She chewed on her own fingers as Spike carried her out to the living room where a blanket was laying on the floor in front of the TV. On the blanket were a few different toys. One was a toy center that a baby laid under and kicked and smacked at the toys to get them to play sounds and do things. Spike carefully placed her under it before plopping back on the couch and flipping through the channels on TV.
"Might not be the most conventional of parents, but I don't think we're doin too badly luv. You seem to be happy yeah?" Spike took up the beer he'd been drinking when he smelled Eliza messing in her diaper. He was thinking an awful lot tonight, thinking on what he was doing here and how master vampires didn't settle down like this. They did whatever the hell they wanted to whoever the hell they wanted. Unless…this was what he wanted.
Self-reflection wasn't his strong suit, Spike preferred to just kick arse an have a bloody good time. Even though he was now a guardian of an infant human he could still do that, he could still have fun with Xander and kick demon arse. Who really needed to slaughter the innocent anyway? Usually it just got him in trouble more often than not.
"Right, nibblet. I suppose I got it all figured out now. Let's say I get this triple damned chip out of me head, no more slaughterin humans. Harder'n it sounds I bet, but I got priorities now, don't I. I may not have the soul or the brooding or the poofy gelled hair, but I can help protect this hellmouth as well as Peaches did, fuck I could be better'n tha' geezer. I'd still need blood sure, but I'd probably bag it most of the time. Possibly get some fresh off the tap here or there, a pint or two from someone an move on right? I hear you can do that without killin'em. Probably take some practice but unlife wouldn't be so bad then." Spike stopped to think about all that, if there was anything he'd missed. "Right, one last thing. If I ever do get this thing outta me head I'm claiming Xander. Tha's right, gona make it all proper-like. He'll be me consort until such time I can get the information out of Peaches about this mating ritual he once told me about." Spike smiled ruefully, "Suppose I shoulda been listening when he was blowin all that hot air, aye?"
The little girl squealed, she didn't care what Spike was saying really it was his deep soothing voice that she loved. She slapped at the little buttons on her play center, making the fish talk and bubble sounds happen. She squealed again as she watched the graphics move around and light up like water. This caused Spike to smile softly, the little girl was wearing on him that was for sure.
Meanwhile just outside the door Willow stood. She and Xander had arrived just moments ago but Xander had a problem with a few bags slipping from his fingers and tumbling down the stairs again. He'd handed his keys off to Willow to get the door open while he gathered up the presents. Willow stood there as she listened to Spike on the other side of the door explain to Eliza what he'd do if he got the chip out. She pressed her ear to the door and listened carefully. She heard no deception in his voice, and besides that he'd have no reason to lie to the little girl anyway. Not only would she not remember anything he said right now, but it wasn't like she could tell anyone anyway. Willow bit her lip as she watched Xander struggle with some of the bags, finally untangling the bags and getting them up the stairs.
Willow decided she had one last gift to set up as she inserted the key into the lock and turned it. Spike looked up as Willow and Xander entered the apartment. Xander smiled seeing Eliza under the little play center they'd gotten her, "hey Spike, hey Eliza. How was Eliza while we were gone?"
"She was an angel, luv." Spike guzzled the last bit of beer in the bottle before looking up at Xander with a smile.
"You had to change a poopy diaper huh?" Xander smiled as Spike looked at him with wide eyes and Eliza squealed as she got the toy center to light up again and play fish sounds.
"It was horrible, almost wanted ta heave!" Spike confessed, putting a hand over his mouth as if trying to hold back his lunch.
"It gets better after the first time," Willow mentioned as she walked into the living room to set bags down, "or so I hear."
"Yeah, well you didn't smell it. Vampire here, remember? My senses are highly acute compared to you half-deaf mortals." Spike said; he didn't notice how Xander looked at him with a sad longing, but Willow did. She would compare the look on his face to that of a child watching his mother leave him for the first time at day care or having to leave his mother for the first time to go to school. Xander knew he was mortal; he would die one day of old age or disease or any number of things while Spike lived on. The only consolation is that Spike would always be there to take care of Eliza and possibly Eliza's future children.
Just as fast as it appeared, Xander's sad longing disappeared to be replaced by his ecstatic happy face. "Well, since you had practice wrapping up a baby you can help us wrap presents." Xander noticed Spike's interested look and headed him off before he could say anything, "not your presents, mister." Xander pointed a finger at him and quickly squirreled away the bags that contained Spike's presents.
Spike grumbled as he sunk back into the couch. Willow began to place presents on the coffee table for various members of the Scooby gang. She hid a bag behind the couch, probably her presents to Xander and Spike, before setting down with wrapping supplies.
"Wots the fun of wrapping prezzies if I don't get to see mine?" Spike grumbled. Of course he'd deny Xander nothing, it was just how he was.
"Spike, just think about how you'll feel when you finally get to open them on Christmas day!" Willow mentioned as she started on a sweater she'd gotten Buffy, one the slayer had her eye on for a while.
"Suppose it'll be worth it then, all the anticipation build up. Kind of like tantric sex when you delay the release so much an then-"
"TMI! TMI SPIKE!" Willow held up her hands, "I do not need to know why you know about tantric sex or whether or not you and Xander dabble in it!"
Spike smirked; he knew that'd get her off the subject. When he heard Eliza start making a fuss Spike got up, "uh oh, must be knackered, poor little thing." Spike picked her up as Eliza started to cry because she was tired and fussy and she didn't know how to fix it. Spike held her against his chest and rocked her a bit, "Okay luv, I hear you. I get cranky when I'm knackered too."
Willow watched in awe as Spike completely ignored the fact others were watching and began to sing to the little girl in an attempt to calm her.
"Dashing through the snow,
In a one 'orse open sleigh.
O're the fields we go,
Laughing all the way.
Bells on bob tails ring,
Making spirits bright.
Whot fun It is to laugh an sing,
A sleighing song tonight.
"Oh, jingle bells, jingle bells,
Jingle all the way.
Oh, whot fun it is to ride,
In a one 'orse open sleigh.
Jingle bells, jingle bells,
Jingle all the way.
Oh, whot fun it is to ride,
In a one horse open sleigh."
Willow watched and listened as Spike walked her back toward the spare room where her crib was. He continued to sing the song softly to the little girl and Willow saw her relax against Spike's shoulder and start sucking her thumb. Spike's voice was wonderful to listen to, especially when it wasn't throwing out profanities. Obviously Eliza thought the same way as his voice soothed her right to sleep on her way to bed.
Spike passed Xander in on the way as Xander came out of the master bedroom. Xander smiled as he sat on the couch where Spike had been sitting and looked at Willow, "Isn't he great with her? I mean he'll deny it and make a lot of noise cause that's how he is. He's the big bad and he has to keep his reputation as a pain in the ass, but I think he really loves her. Don't you think? He treats her like a little princess."
Willow was glad for once that it was someone else doing the babbling, "Yeah, it's obvious he really cares about her. So I was thinking everyone could come over here on Christmas to celebrate it and open presents."
"Oh yeah that'd be fine. Oh…we should have dinner together. A big ham right in the middle with all the trimmings." Xander thought about that, a real Christmas celebration with a family. Something he hadn't had since he was a toddler.
"I and Tara can come over early to help cook." Willow mentioned as she sat aside the wrapped present she'd been working on.
Xander picked up his own wrapping supplies and got to work wrapping gifts, "That would be great, Wills. I don't know how Spike might take it. He may tell you to get out of his kitchen and let him do it. Really I fail at cooking so every time I attempt it he tells me to get out of his kitchen and he'll get me something to eat that isn't burnt." Xander chuckled, "I think he's afraid I'll make a big mess and he'll have to clean it up."
"Spike's a neat freak?" Willow asked, that was something she just couldn't imagine. She'd seen his DeSoto right after Dru had broken up with him; it had been a mini pig-sty. Maybe it was just on account of his heartbreak and he didn't give a shit at the time, or maybe he didn't like living like that anymore and wanted to have a nice home – or Lair.
"Well, I don't know if I'd call him a neat freak, he just doesn't like a mess or anything." Xander shrugged as he wrapped presents. He wasn't too bad at it, but he wasn't quite as neat as Willow was. A few times she had to grab the present and fix his corners real quick. After watching her a few times he saw her technique and picked it up easily. Xander wasn't dumb by any stretch of the imagination, he just didn't learn like everyone else. Most of the kids that got A's in class learned by reading or listening. Xander learned by using his hands and being active. Case in point, the wrapping of presents and his construction job.
"We'll have to pick up the stuff for Christmas dinner soon if we're gona have it." Xander only nodded in agreement as he focused on wrapping presents. A few minutes later Spike appeared and got in on the wrapping fun. He had the baby monitor by them in case Eliza began to fuss. They talked about every day things, they talked about monsters that Buffy slayed or had to slay, they talked about Christmas specials supposed to be on, and they talked about Eliza. The little girl would have such a large extended family that the three doubted she'd ever be without love. Even though their little family was a strange, slightly dysfunctional one, what was most important was that everyone cared about each other and what happened.
After setting up the dates and when Willow and Tara would arrive to begin Christmas dinner, Spike and Xander stacked all the presents around the tree and under it. Giles, Buffy, Dawn, Tara, and Willow would bring any other presents they had to hand out on Christmas day. Standing back Xander got a soft, warm light in his eyes as he viewed the Christmas tree with all the brightly colored presents under it. It was starting to feel like a real Christmas for once. He wouldn't have to make his yearly trek outside to camp out for Christmas, he wouldn't have to avoid flying dishes or whiskey tumblers, he didn't even have to associate with that part of his life ever again. The moment he accepted Spike's advances he closed that chapter on his life for good and he'd be damned if he ever went back to it.
As Spike viewed the tree as well, and he had to admit it was a damn fine tree if ever he saw one, Xander came up behind him and wrapped his arms around Spike's thin waist. "I think I promised someone a present before we left, didn't I?"
Spike looked up with a smile, "Wot did you get me…?"
Xander thought about it for a moment before replying, "Can't tell you, buuuuuut if you go get those chocolates I have stashed in the kitchen and give me about 10 minutes before coming into the bedroom I can show you."
Xander kissed Spike's cheek before moving away and dashing off in the direction of the bedroom. A slow smirk spread across Spike's face as he thought about what Xander said, this had potential. He went to the kitchen to look for those chocolates, figuring they might be part of the whole seduction scene Xander obviously had planned. Being ambitious Spike grabbed the chocolate sauce out of the fridge and the whip cream in a can. Kicking the door closed with his foot Spike dashed for the hallway leading to the bedrooms. He skidded to a halt before back tracking, grabbing the baby monitor, and dashing back in the direction he'd originally been going.
When he entered the bedroom it was curiously empty. He looked around before noticing the light under the door to the bathroom and smirked, Xander was getting ready obviously, so he should too. Spike dropped his bounty on the end table, setting up the baby monitor where it wouldn't get knocked over, and set the treats in front of it.
Spike hurried to pull the black tee out of his pants and over his head. It landed in a puddle on the floor at his feet before his hands dropped and scrambled to open his belt. The belt came open under the assault of his lean fingers and joined the discarded shirt on the floor. His black jeans followed next and once Spike was sufficiently naked he dove beneath the covers, pulling the red satin sheets up to his waist and letting them settle.
"Ready out there Spike?" Xander asked from the bathroom.
Spike looked down at his lap a moment before replying, "I'm rising to the occasion luv, let's get a wiggle on."
Xander laughed softly, "Well, remember when I told you about my stint in Oxnard?"
"As the stripper, yeah? Wot about it?" Spike had an idea where this was going, and he'd been a damn good boy so he deserved it!
"Yeah, do me a favor and hit play on the CD player beside you." Xander said as Spike heard rustling in the bathroom.
Spike located the small CD/cassette player by the bed and hit play. Instrumental Christmas music started to play, nice slow music too. Spike looked toward the door to the bathroom and his jaw hung. His construction worker lover was leaning against the door way, bronze muscles glistening from what smelled like baby oil, wearing a santa hat, santa pants with suspenders, and nothing else. Well, Spike couldn't quite see if he had anything on under the pants but from the bed it looked like nothing else.
"Well?" Xander asked as he pushed himself off the door jam and slowly walked his way over to the bed. He slipped his arms beneath first one suspender, then the other, and let the pants fall to reveal a very tight, very skimpy red velvet g-string with mistletoe embroidered on the front. Spike wanted very much to kiss what was under that mistletoe.
Spike realized Xander had asked him something. He tore his eyes away from Xander's package and looked into the boy's warm chocolate eyes. "Delicious luv, absolutely perfect little pressie."
"Oh, it's not little by any means Spike, you know that." Xander winked and slid onto the bed, hitching a leg up and over Spike's lap and straddling the vampire.
"Don't 'ave to tell me twice, luv." Spike looked Xander over as the boy straddled his lap. "Perfect, you know 'ow much I love unwrapping my pressies." Spike's hand crept across Xander's thigh, up over his hip, and came to rest on Xander's hot backside. Spike gave the cheek under his hand a squeeze and Xander undulated against the vampire. Spike's finger snuck its way beneath the string and caressed Xander's crack slowly, moving the tip up and down to tease the boy. Spike pushed his finger further down Xander's crack until he came in contact with his puckered little hole. He rubbed Xander's hole a little, feeling it open and gape under his touch in anticipation.
"An wot a pressie it is." Spike held Xander's hip with his free hand as the boy moved and thrust against his hand. "Shall I take a peek then?" Xander could only bite his lip as he undulated to the music, shifting himself to get Spike's finger to rub against his tight pucker, while the fingers of Spike's free hand snuck their way beneath the band of the underwear he had on. It wasn't often he wore something so skimpy, the few times in relation to his stripper position in Oxnard. But there was just something about Spike that brought out the dirty boy in him. Spike teased the fabric of the g-string down slowly until the tip of Xander's erect cock peeked from behind the band.
"Spike…" Xander whined, rocking himself a little harder after Spike slipped the tip of his finger into the gaping hole he had been rubbing.
"Begging already? 'aven't even unwrapped you yet." Spike looked up at the boy in his lap with a wicked smile. With a quick shove Spike flipped them both over so it was now Xander underneath him, Spike's face just above Xander's clothed crotch. "'aven't even gotten to kiss wot's beneath the mistletoe yet." And without further preamble Spike pulled the cloth down enough to expose Xander's genitals and laid a trail of kisses beginning from the crown of Xander's cock down to the bulge of his balls.
Xander folded his arms beneath the pillow under his head, stretching himself out for Spike's enjoyment. He watched as Spike worked the thong down Xander's long legs and toss it aside. Spike's tongue rasped over Xander's sac slowly, tracing the seam with the pointed tip, and then sucking the package into his mouth. Xander groaned, lifting his hips in invitation as Spike worshipped his balls. The vampire knew it was one of his favorite spots to have sucked and licked. Xander had presents of mind left to take the santa hat he still had on his head and toss it away.
Spike's tongue danced across Xander's sac, down the tender sensitive skin beneath, and found its home at Xander's hole. As Spike licked across his pucker, Xander bucked and moaned his pleasure. Before Spike could get too involved Xander took the time to flip himself over and tuck his knees beneath himself.
"Much better position, luv. Must've read my mind, yeah?" Spike gloated as his hands grabbed Xander's ass firmly, thumbs slipping down Xander's crack, and pulled the globes apart to reveal his most secret of places. Spike leaned forward and placed his tongue there again, licking and stroking along the hole to tease Xander into a frenzy. The boy had to shove a fist against his mouth to silence his moans. He really didn't need the neighbors calling the cops on them, besides Spike was usually vocal enough for them both.
Spike continued to rim Xander until the boy's pucker hung open and ready, hungry for what was coming next. By now Xander's hips thrust in the air, undulating to find any kind of stimulation for his neglected cock. Spike stabbed his tongue in one last time for effect before setting up and searching in the night stand for the bottle of Astroglide they kept there. Retrieving the bottle with a crow of delight, Spike sat back on his heels behind Xander and made sure to slick his own cock up sufficiently. Xander, however, received no further preparation. Spike knew he liked it rough, and rough was what he'd get.
Placing a hand on Xander's hip and guiding his cock with the other Spike rubbed the tip against Xander's hole before pushing the first inch in. Xander panted short puffs of breath, eyes screwed shut, as he was breached by Spike's thick member. "Oh, fuck Spike."
"Yeah, that's the idea here luv." Spike violently surged forward, burying the rest of his cock in Xander's tight ass. Xander grabbed the sheets in a white knuckled grip, doing his best to relax to the intrusion, but loving the thrill of being so violently penetrated. Xander hung onto the bed as Spike set a quick, brutal pace. The force of his thrusts making the bed squeak and groan in protest all the while Xander groaned in pleasure. The sounds echoing off the walls and around them, in their ears and vibrating them to the very core. It was only when they reached climax, soaring into the stars together, that they ceased movement. One lithe, pale, supple body lying atop a bronze, strapping one; both connected still at the core. Two battered souls joined together for one perfect moment, one brilliant burst of light, and then it was over.
Only when the euphoria died down and the stars twinkled no more did either of them move. And it was to the sound of crying in the other room, the reminder that while an odd couple they were still a family no less. For once Spike looked upon the new day with a warmth in his heart that he had not carried in over 120 years.
(Disclaimer: I don't own the song Jingle Bells. I dunno who owns it cause it's been covered so much. I didn't make any money off it, so don't sue)
*** Christmas Day ***
Spike woke to cries coming over the baby monitor. He rubbed at his eyes like a child, checking the clock and groaning at the time. Xander slept soundly beside him, having done all the grocery shopping for Christmas dinner the day before his boy was exhausted. Spike contemplated going back to bed after he saw to Eliza, but decided he might as well stay up. The birds would be over soon to start Christmas dinner and set presents all around the tree.
Spike pulled a pair of warm blue fleece pants on, a pair Xander had gotten him to wear around the house, and walked into the baby's room. He picked the little girl up, she quieted immediately, "'ere now, wot's all the trouble hmm?" Spike took her over to the changing table and laid her out. He'd had much more practice at this since the first time he attempted it, the smell didn't bother him nearly as much now. Spike unbuttoned her from her pajamas, setting them to the side, and got to work on the dirty diaper. He had her cleaned, powdered, and covered back up in quick order. She grinned up at him as she sucked on her thumb. "Oi, wots wiv that shit eatin' grin o'yours? Look just like your uncle when you do tha'."
The little girl giggled and reached for him with both hands. Spike picked her up and then grabbed her blanket, which he swaddled around her. "Wots say you an me go watch the boob tube for a while before the witches get here." Spike grabbed her teething ring she liked to chew on on his way by and handed it to her. He doubted she was teething yet, but it was better she chew on that rather than something else.
Spike turned on the TV once he reached the living room, listening to it while he continued into the kitchen to fetch Eliza a bottle. This too had come to him with practice; it wasn't that hard to fix up a bottle. All you had to do was follow the recipe on the side of the can, easy.
Eliza reached for the bottle as Spike brought it closer. The two sat on the couch quietly, Spike watching and flipping through various channels, Eliza drinking her breakfast. Spike took a look at the presents under the tree. Most were normal gifts between himself and Xander and gifts to or from the girls. There were a few that had a little naughty surprise waiting and he was sure Xander couldn't help himself in getting Spike a few naughty presents. Their relationship had progressed very nicely and the boy was now unafraid to suggest such things to Spike when it use to be Spike who had to make suggestions and take the first step.
Within the hour Eliza was back down in her crib, deciding it was time for her to doze off again after her brekkies, and the witches had arrived to begin Christmas dinner. Spike let the two birds in, pointing to the kitchen and warning if they made a mess he'd have both their arses, the retreated to the bedroom to wake Xander.
The boy lay sleeping just as Spike left him, and Spike decided this was the perfect time to give the boy one of his gifts. It wasn't naughty, it wasn't suggestive, and it didn't have anything to do with sex in any way. It was quite simply the giving of himself to Xander in every way he could think of. A way to show the boy that Spike's heart belonged to Xander completely no matter what mask he put on for everyone else.
Spike pulled a slip of simple parchment from the back of the drawer in the nightstand; he stared at the paper for so long he was surprised his stare didn't burn holes in it. The last time he'd done this he was rejected so completely that he'd stormed out into the night and right into the arms of his future sire. 120 years sounded like a long time, but it did nothing to lessen the sting of those words spoken over a century ago.
"But I love you."
"Oh William, you are…beneath me."
Spike shook his head to clear the fog from his mind. Xander was not that callous or shallow, Xander did not care for status or wealth or image. All the boy cared about was love, the love of friends and family and the love of the man he chose to share his life with.
With a firm nod of his head, Spike decided this little gift would be given and Xander would love it because it came directly from Spike's heart. Reaffirming himself that Xander was not Cecily Spike walked around the bed until he came to Xander's side and sat. He reached out slowly and gently shook Xander's shoulder to wake him, "Come on luv, wake up. It's Christmas.
Xander stirred slightly and rolled over, "c'mon mom, not even a school day, 10 more minutes." Spike heard Xander mumble.
This made Spike smile, a soft chuckle on his lips, "not your mum, luv. Wouldn't mind bein called daddy though…" Spike took a moment to ponder this before shaking his head, "Come on luv, wakie wakie its daybreakie!"
Xander rolled back over, "alright, Mr-pushy-vampire-person, I'm awake." Xander slowly sat up, keeping the blanket pooled around his legs to stay warm, and rubbed at his eyes like a little boy. "Is it Christmas yet?"
Spike nodded, "yeah, it's 11 in the morning on Christmas Day. Eliza's already been seen to so we've got a bit of time to ourselves." Spike leaned in to punctuate that with a kiss.
Xander threaded his fingers through Spike's hair, holding the vampire's head still as he explored that tender mouth under his lips and tongue. As they broke apart Xander grinned, "Merry Christmas to me! Alright, so where are my presents?" He slapped his hands together and started to rub them all the while looking around.
"Still under the tree, o'course. Got one here you can open now, though." Spike still held the small parchment in his hand.
Not noticing the paper Xander looked Spike up and down as if assessing his present, "I see no mistletoe but it'll do."
Spike snorted, "Cheeky monkey. This is for later. Got something else you can have for your first pressie."
Xander looked in Spike's eyes, getting the sense this wasn't that kind of present now, "What is it?"
Spike rubbed the back of his neck a bit, wondering if he was just going to make a big ass of himself here or if Xander would really appreciate it. "Well, you've been askin me to open up more yeah? Show you the real me."
"So far I follow you…" Xander confirmed.
"Well, I made you something…for Christmas…wrote you something actually." Spike looked up from where he'd been staring at his feet so he could see Xander's eyes, "Wrote you a poem."
"A poem?" And Xander's voice sounded hopeful. Not disappointed in the least, like you might hear someone sound like when you'd promised them a big big gift and they got a little poem instead. "You wrote me a poem? Well, let's hear it?" A slow smile spread across Xander's face as he came forward. After all the time poking and prodding Spike to open up about his past and be comfortable enough with Xander to share his innermost depths it was finally happening.
"Don't laugh alright? Wotever you do, don't laugh." He looked at Xander, "I know it's completely horrible just… Lie to me if you have to yeah?" Xander opened his mouth to counter that but Spike was clearing his throat to begin the poem:
My heart beats,
After a century of silence.
I cannot speak,
When I look into your eyes.
Like the North Star,
Guiding the wise men.
Your love has brought me so far,
Only, I cannot hide then.
After so long,
It is hard to be laid so bare.
But with a lover so strong,
I needn't despair.
For my heart beats,
After a century of silence.
It is when you speak,
That I finally feel alive.
As Spike finished, he braced himself for the rejection and pain always related to his poetry. Willam the bloody awful poet, he should have just stuck to the big bad. Xander waited until Spike had finished and pulled the vampire into his arms, "That is the sweetest thing I've ever heard Spike."
Spike was paralyzed with fear and delight. Fear that the rejection was just around the corner, delight that Xander loved his words so much. "I was worried you wouldn't like it, luv."
Xander carefully extracted the piece of parchment from between Spike's fingers and laced his fingers through Spike's, he leaned in and kissed Spike tenderly on the lips as he sat the poem on his night stand. "There, now it's right where I can see it when I wake up every morning, Spike I know you're afraid to show William. It's hard, especially with this group who sometimes opens their mouths before thinking, but know I will never, ever, under any reason even if I was being threatened, hurt you. Trying to make William go away is like trying to make yourself go away. William is a part of you, just as Spike is. And every single part of you, the naughty bits all the way to the mousy poet inside you, I love with all my heart."
Spike ducked his head, indescribably pleased that Xander would say such things to him. Of course it would still take time before Spike was completely trusting to Xander, probably time they didn't have to spare, but slowly Xander was working his defenses down. "Xander…" Spike looked up and Xander decided to pretend that the misty eyes Spike was sporting was because of the onions Willow was chopping in the kitchen. The two leaned in for a tender kiss, sharing the soft moment between lovers and trying to make it last for as long as possible. Of course, every good thing must come to an end…
"Hey sleepy heads! You wana come out and help with the dinner preparations? Tara is getting all our presents all set up under the tree." Willow decided she was going to ignore the fact her best friend and a vampire were about to make out in there.
Xander smiled widely up at Willow, "Sure thing Wills, just give us a sec would ya?" Willow nodded and went back into the other room, giving the couple their privacy.
Spike looked up at Xander and smiled, "Got a Christmas to get goin here, luv. We can save the mush for later yeah?"
Xander reached out, grabbing Spike's nipple through his shirt and giving it a twist making Spike yelp in surprise, "yeah we can save that for later." And with a maniacal laugh Xander leapt from the bed and pulled on a pair of flannel pants with pictures of polar bears on them, a shirt matching the blue of the pants, and a Santa hat before dashing out of the room.
Spike still held a hand over his abused nipple and stared in the direction Xander had gone, "Why that little…." And in a flash he was up after him.
Christmas dinner cooked for most of the day. Meanwhile everyone began showing up at Spike and Xander's home. Giles brought Buffy and Dawn in his car along with all the other presents. They were placed under the tree to be opened at the same time. Everyone couldn't wait to see Eliza and soon the baby started to get fussy about being held and passed around so much and so Spike determined it was time for everyone to open presents while he held the little girl protectively in his lap and growled at anyone who got too close.
Xander would open presents for Eliza first, piling all her loot up to one side to be put away later. Only after her presents did he start in on his and Spike's, all the while everyone else opened their gifts back and forth. Spike's presents ranged from good malt whiskey from Giles, with a ta in his direction Spike put the bottle away for later, and a new shiny finely sharpened axe from Buffy. It had a good weight behind it, balanced nicely for perfect slices. Dawn had gotten Spike a brand new Zippo. How she got it when she was still a minor, they'd never know. The rest of his gifts were from Xander and they ranged from the very naughty-can't-show-anyone to the extremely thoughtful. A few of his naughty toys were in the electro-sex family while others were pieces of a new wardrobe.
There was even a brand new trench coat just like his old one. When Spike looked over curiously Xander gave a little shrug, "I thought there might be times you wouldn't want to risk wearing your real coat, cause of sentimental value and all, and I got you that. This one can get gooped on without much fuss." The thoughtfulness behind the present, and the fact that Xander didn't cringe at why Spike's coat was sentimental, moved Spike. Put it in the box and smiled at Xander. What Spike found strange was that he didn't see a gift for him from Willow or Tara. But from the way the girls were eyeing him he figured it'd be coming sooner or later.
Xander's gifts were quite similar to Spike's, a dictionary on demons from Giles so the non-researchy person – Xander – could look up demons without having to go through Latin books, wood working tools from Buffy, a brown sweater from Dawn that she claimed would bring out his eyes, and a special amulet from Willow and Tara meant to stop any spell in its tracks that intended on harming him.
Spike's gifts to him ranged widely as had his to Spike. Xander received a number of naughty toys that he couldn't show the others. Spike had gotten creative, edible lubes and a new set of cuffs for the bed just to name a few. Of course chances were Spike was anticipating Xander liked them so much he'd use them on Spike. Among the normal presents he'd gotten from Spike there were a few new wardrobe pieces that Spike thought would look smashing on Xander and there was one gift, a very small box almost like a jewelry box that had Xander dumbfounded. He looked at the small box and then at Spike wondering if he'd get an explanation for it.
Spike rubbed the back of his neck, not comfortable with so many people around who could make fun of him over this, but knew Xander deserved and explanation. "Right well…you see I had this funny idea. Well… we've been together for a while now yeah? Got this little baby to look after an… as odd an dysfunctional it is we've got a family so I just thought…"
Spike was unable to finish his thought before Xander was opening the small box to show two gold bands setting among a cushion of velvet. The name on the inside of the box was one of the most well known jeweler names in Sunnydale. Everyone stared at the small box in Xander's hand, not quite able to believe Spike did this, that he'd taken this kind of step after everything he'd been through with lovers.
As for Spike he was setting on the couch beside Xander, ignoring the silence from everyone else and focused most on the silence from Xander, holding Eliza in his arms so she wouldn't fall even with all the wiggling she was doing. He was so worried Xander would think this idea so corny and not proper, he almost missed what Xander said, "Wot was that, luv?"
Xander looked over, a smile slowly lighting up his face, "I said yes." And Spike watched as Xander pulled the rings out and examined them a little closer before turning to Spike.
"Before you do that there's one more gift to give." Willow said, standing up. Tara stood beside her, providing a unified front with the giving of this particular gift.
Both men looked up as Willow and Tara stood. Both held a ring in their hands waiting to put it on the other. "What is it Wills?"
Willow smiled and she turned to Spike, the vampire felt a little put off that he had the attention of two witches on him now. "Spike, Tara and I have decided that it is time your chip be neutralized. Together we found a way to do it. And this is our gift to you." Everyone else looked up in surprise; the witches had kept this particular gift secret. Giles knew he could try to protest, but it probably would get him nowhere.
Spike was speechless, the chance to be whole again. To be a real vampire and able to do real vampire things. But…he looked toward Xander who was looking at him hopefully, to Eliza in his lap who had a very familiar shit-eating grin he saw many times on Xander, and then to the slayer who looked unsure as to what she should do: start whittling a stake or welcome Spike into the family. He looked back to Willow hopefully, "you can do tha'?"
"Yeah, we can! And it couldn't be simpler either. It's a simple spell that poofs the little piece of technology out of your head and into my hand." Willow explained with a smile.
"Hang on a tic yeah? Wot's to say you won't poof me whole brain out of my head an into your hand?" Spike asked the question that was nagging at everyone.
"Oh simple, this spell doesn't work for large objects like that." Spike preened a bit at that, the bird calling his brain large. Willow giggled, "I mean this spell is specifically for transporting small objects, small like microchips. It won't work with any brains at all."
"Well, let's get to it yeah?" Spike stood up, handing Eliza to Xander for the time being, and standing still for Willow to do her thing. He was nervous, a he always was around magic, but if this meant he wouldn't be a nutered vampire any more he'd endure just about anything. It wasn't so much about being able to feed himself anymore as it was just being able to defend himself against humans and the most important thing: claiming Xander as his finally.
The spell didn't take very long, a few spoken words and Spike felt as though something was being pulled from his head. There was a brief moment of pain before he was looking at the source of all his problems setting innocently in Willow's hand.
He took the small piece of silicone and wiring between thumb and forefinger, examining the tiny device, before crushing it into tiny little bits. The bits floated to the floor where Spike stomped on them for good measure, "Yeah, an good riddance."
Eliza began to giggle, watching one of her daddies acting so silly. Xander grinned down at the baby, "I know, daddy's funny huh?"
Spike tilted his head as Xander called him daddy, and as if someone had flipped a switch his libido was revving up ready to go. "Right, bedroom, now."
Having anticipated this Tara came over and took baby Eliza from Xander with a smile and a nod. Xander looked around at everyone before following Spike. Just as they were to enter the room Spike turned back to the occupants of the living room, "Right, ta muchly for the pressies. Now if you don't mind, sod off." He smiled and pushed Xander into the bedroom. Everyone did their best to pretend what was going on in the bedroom was not really going on as they made preparations for dinner and cleaned up from opening presents.
Spike looked at the boy, both still holding the rings Spike had gotten, "you sure bout this luv? You know wot I am, wot I'm capable of…"
Xander smiled as he came over and kissed Spike tenderly on the lips, "Spike, I accept you, all of you. Every last bit that comes with it. The poet, the menacing demon, the badass fighter, the snarky friend, all of it that makes up the man I love."
Spike didn't quite know what to say to that, the utter acceptance of what he was and what he had been it was more than anyone in the past had ever been able to do. For Drusilla he was her dark prince, her badass demon. For Harmony he was her sex toy. For Buffy he was her punching bag, to help her feel again. But for Xander it was so much more, he didn't have to hide anything for fear of offending or scaring him off. Xander had a rather interesting a jaded past as it was, Spike doubted there was much he could come up with that would make Xander cringe.
Spike let his actions speak for themselves as he kissed Xander. Halfway through the kiss he shifted into his game face, letting Xander's tongue explore the dangerous sharp fangs in his mouth. Never did he sense any fear from his lover, though. Pulling away from the kiss Spike looked at Xander questioningly. The answer he received was for Xander to tilt his head to the side, exposing his neck to the hungry vampire in the room.
Spike moved in quickly, leaning in to Xander and digging his fangs into the boy's neck. Xander clutched at his back, holding Spike's head to the spot to reassure the vampire the attention was very much welcome.
After taking only a short mouth-full of blood Spike moved away, licking over the wound he'd created to encourage healing. Spike then cut a line across the hollow of his own throat, needing no invitation Xander latched his own mouth there and sucked at the blood to complete the bond. While he drank Spike slipped the slim band around Xander's finger while Xander did the same with Spike's. Vampire lore and human tradition mixed perfectly to bind two souls together forever. All that was left was to consummate the bond and that was exactly what Spike intended to do as he tumbled himself and Xander down into the bed only a few feet away.
Christmas time again and this time the family had grown. Large enough now to inhabit a cabin to the north for the Christmas holiday, a chance to get away from Sunnydale and its worries for a short time. Even though the slayer was still needed in town it wasn't nearly as hectic as it once had been.
Spike and Xander celebrated their 4th anniversary around this time, the two had been together for this long and Giles was hard pressed to find any reason for Spike to stray now, not after so long. Spike, for his part, had grown up. He remained the snarky badass he always was, but he had more important priorities now and was even helping the slayer keep the peace. As far as the demon population was concerned Spike was the Master of the hellmouth and any problems usually went through him. Claiming the hellmouth as his territory had helped significantly and now Buffy had the time she needed to support her sister and now a healthy relationship with Angel.
Two Christmases after Spike and Xander got together Willow produced a present for Angel, just as she had for Spike. This Christmas present was to make his soul permanent so it couldn't just be uprooted as easily as it had in the past. There was worry that with the threat of losing the soul gone that he may revert, but Willow seemed confident that would not happen. Angel made regular trips to Sunnydale to see Buffy when he could, and when he couldn't Buffy would travel to LA.
Tara and Willow were still together and still in love, it was just as beautiful as Xander and Spike's relationship. Of course Dawn didn't try to walk in on Willow and Tara every chance she got to see some hot guy on guy action.
Eliza, now 5 years old, had one of the largest families a little girl could ask for. Two vampire protectors, a slayer, two witches, a watcher, Xander, Dawn, and a partridge in a pear tree. To Eliza it was all perfectly normal, to her Angel was "Grandpa Angel" with some encouragement from Spike of course. The look on Angel's face ever since Spike had explained Vampire hierarchy to her and she started calling him that had been priceless. Buffy, Willow, Tara, and Dawn were all "aunt" and Giles was "uncle" even though Spike tried to get her to call him "grandpa" too. He was old enough, Spike had argued. Giles had argued right back that Spike was old enough to be her great, great, grandfather. Spike decided to give up on that one because he'd rather not have his little girl call him anything like that. And she was very much his little girl, he spoiled her rotten.
To Eliza Spike and Xander were her daddies even though most other little girls had a mommy too. Spike and Xander had been dodging that bullet for a few months now. But they knew it was only a matter of time before she asked directly and what could they say? Her real parents were dead? Spike didn't want to risk losing his little girl's love just because she found out they weren't her real parents and her real parents were actually dead. But…he couldn't lie to her either; he could never lie to her. If she'd ever found out he lied to her about something he wasn't sure his heart would be able to stand the look of hurt she'd most likely wear.
Christmas presents had been distributed only moments before, everyone eagerly tearing into theirs to see what they'd gotten. Christmas presents ever since the first Christmas together had gotten increasingly inventive. The witches always gave something magical meant for protection or something like that, Giles and Spike always exchanged something British but it was different every year, and clothes still remained a factor but things were getting interesting. One of the gifts to Eliza had been a chance to ride a real, live reindeer. This year they had managed to fit in the theme of the 12 days of Christmas, especially to their significant others.
Needless to say Spike's 5th gift to Xander had been very interesting, 5 golden rings and not all of them had been for his finger either. Xander had a hell of a time hiding the other ones before Eliza had seen, the little girl always wanting to peek in everyone's boxes to see what they got.
As clean up was under way Eliza sit on the floor playing with a few of the toys she'd received when she looked up at Spike and Xander, "Who are my real parents?"
Both men looked sharply at the little girl and everyone else's attention was on them as well, awaiting their answer. Spike looked to Xander who was looking back, both unsure of how to respond, when Spike spoke first, "Wot do you mean poppet, we are your parents."
"I mean my real parents, the ones who gave birth to me." Her words served to prove the little girl was smarter than the average bear; she'd always been so smart now certainly wasn't any different. "I know there had to be a mommy."
Again Spike looked to Xander, failing to come up with any kind of answer. Xander decided instead of avoiding it they best face it. "Sweety, come here." The little girl got up and he lifted her up into his lap so she was facing them both. "You're right; it's not possible to get such a sweet little girl from two men."
"Actually there are spells that could-" Willow blinked as Spike gave her a look. She raised her hand, "Shutting up now."
"As I was saying," Xander continued, "it's not genetically possible for us to conceive a baby. Neither of us can carry it. Your right, a mother had to be involved. Sweety, your real parents had been my brother and his wife. I never knew I had a brother, you can thank my parents for that…" Xander grumbled the line out; to this day he still hated his parents. "But something happened, there was an accident and they were killed. You survived and you were brought to me and Spike to see if we would take care of you." Xander smiled and took her little chin between his thumb and forefinger, "And the moment we looked at you we couldn't say no. We fell in love with you instantly."
Eliza looked to Spike then to have this confirmed. Spike smiled at her and nodded, agreeing with what Xander had said. Inside he was crumbling apart. What if she hated them now? What if she didn't see them as her real parents and things got worse instead of better? What if she saw Xander as her parent because they were at least related but not Spike? The fear gripping his heart, or what served as his heart now, was almost too much to bear silently.
Then Eliza got up and got into Spike's lap where she put her arms around his neck and hugged him, "You both are my daddies because you love me and take care of me and tell me stories and hold me when I'm scared." She kissed Spike's cheek with a smile and then did the same with Xander.
While she hugged and kissed Xander's cheek, Spike was rejoicing with relief. She still loved them even though her real parents were dead, maybe that honesty thing really did work…
"Besides, Spike gave me soda earlier and it tasted really good." Xander's gaze jumped to Spike as his eyes narrowed.
"Spiiiiike!" Xander almost growled.
"Can't hear you luv, I've got to go check the food, smells like its burning." Spike stood from the couch quickly and retreated into the kitchen where he began to sing Christmas songs very loudly to avoid hearing Xander yelling at him about giving Eliza sugary soda. Everyone around them, including Eliza, began to laugh in mirth as Xander went after Spike.
Xander followed Spike back toward the living room, still ranting about how bad it was to give little kids sugary drinks like that. Spike stopped in the doorway and looked at Xander, "case in point: you."
Xander was taken aback by that, it was true he could get hyperactive when fed candy and soda, "Spike your trying my patients, you can't give her soda!"
"Look, mistletoe." Spike pointed up. Xander looked up to see what he was pointing to and saw the small plant hanging over the doorway. Xander opened his mouth to rant some more but it was filled with Spike's tongue and he proceeded to forget why he was ranting in the first place.
With a group awe, everyone got up to retreat to their respective rooms and give Spike and Xander some privacy to finish this out. Eliza giggled as she watched her daddies make up. She too ran off to her room to play with her new dolls and knew she was probably the luckiest little girl in the world.