Took Hold 33
The ex-soldier stood up, holding out a length of rope. “Do I need to tie you to a chair, too?”
Hurrying to swallow, he continued, “No--Spike said when a vampire loses what he’s made, he gets kind of an empty nest syndrome. I guess Angel went crazy over it or something!” He reached across and ruffled the vampire’s hair as he explained sire/childe bonds and claiming.
Hazel eyes wide, Riley listened. Angel seemed to be paying attention as well. When Xander had finished, he asked, “How do you know who did what to who the night that they…um…” A blush crept through his features and he couldn’t continue.
“You remember when Ethan Rayne made that potion? A vial spilled and let’s just say *fighting* isn’t what ruined our clothes…” Xander tried to keep the rueful tone out of his voice, but the boiling hostility buried in him warred with apathy.
“Oh…Oh! You mean you and Spike…and Angel?”
“And Angelus if you wanna get technical…” The dark-haired human met Riley’s eyes, taking in the sadness there and was instantly contrite. Riley was his friend, and Xander was breaking his heart.
“Oh, no man. I’m sorry. That was the serum, not us. What you guys have really means something to him. We’ll get him back. Anyway, the important thing is that we might have an idea on how to fix this.”
Riley’s spirits lifted and Xander saw hope in his eyes. “I’ll talk to Buffy.”
Spike seriously wanted a cigarette. A vicious shock stabbed at his brain as he floundered to consciousness. He heard soft chanting and recognized the witches. As he turned his head, he growled at the steady, spreading ache. His skin was crawling and a sick buzzing sounded in his ears.
“Xander.” He grunted. Voices closer. He opened his eyes, but the room was dim and he could barely make out Red’s face hovering over his. “Turn on a bloody light, will you?”
“Spike, the light *is* on…” her voice wavered.
“You—You can’t see anything, can you?” the blonde witch asked.
Spike blinked. The vague outlines were there, but it was like peering through black fog. He reigned in his panic with a question, “Is Xander alright? Did he make it?”
“Yeah, he made it. You saved him. You saved us.”
Her voice echoed through his mind, mending his broken heart. The boy was alive. He tried to sit up and his chip went off, knocking him unconscious.
BLISS TOOK HOLD 34