Giles walked out onto the deck, sat down on the swing and looked across at the
ocean. Xander followed him out and leant against the rail staring at the waves
crashing against the shore.
A companionable silence followed, as both got absorbed in their own thoughts. Giles broke the stillness as he stood and walked over to Xander. He lifted his hand and slowly turned the young man around to face him, then lowered his head and placed a soft kiss on his lips. Xander smiled and pulled Giles down to deepen the kiss, his tongue and lips delighting in the feel and taste of the man he loved.
"Mmm, you've had a whisky. You taste rich and delicious."
Giles smiled, "Are you saying I don't unless I've been drinking?"
"Yeah, it's a real chore having to kiss you, don't know how I endure it!"
"Well I don't want to disgust you, maybe I shouldn't bother you again with my attentions."
Xander laughed, "Nuh huh, no disgust here, bothering is definitely required," and they kissed again, the heat rising between them, as they got lost in each other.
Slowly they let their lips part. Xander looked at Giles and whispered, "Do you think this is our reward for all the world save-age?"
"Us, here together?" Giles asked.
"Yeah, us, our work - life in general. It's all so simple now. Before, everything was a struggle, a perpetual battle. Now it's not. It all slots into place. Everything just seems so straightforward, uncomplicated - easy."
"The life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short." Giles murmured.
Xander shrugged, "But not anymore."
Giles traced the edge of Xander's eye patch with his fingertip. "A life less hard. It would be fitting recompense."
Xander grinned, "Some things are still hard."
Giles' eyes twinkled as he sighed, "My work is never done." He took Xander's hand and led him back into the house.