"Charles," a soft voice whispered in his ear. "Oh Cha-rles," dulcet tones, soft lips whispering across the back of his neck, fingers skittering down his arm. "Charles Gunn," the voice hardened, deepened, "get your arse out of bed. Now."
A hand slapped his ass. Hard. Hard? In a panic, Charles Gunn shot awake and turned to see blonde hair, blue eyes, and the decidedly male features of Spike staring him in the face. "Spike! What the hell are you doing in my bed?"
"I would verify whose bed you're actually in before you start throwing about accusations."
Gunn looked around, realized that this was not his room, and really began to panic. He began trying to piece together the admittedly hazy details from the night before. He remembered toasts. A lot of toasts. There had been singing. Somewhere along the way, there might have been some throwing up. After that, it was darkness. He was stopped dead in his panic by laughter. He looked up at Spike's grinning face.
"Get a grip Charlie; you've not been violated in your sleep." Spike shook his head. "Honestly, Americans."
"What the hell happened? Why am I here?"
"Well, I couldn't drag the both of you any further than this."
"Both of us?"
"The Professor is in the bathroom."
Gunn grinned. Things were looking up. "He is?"
"Oh yes he is. Wanna see?"
"Yeah I think I do." Gunn wrapped the sheet around himself and got up to follow Spike.
Wesley Windham-Price lay in an impossible position in Spike's bathtub with his arms clutching a weakly flickering Coleman lantern. Gunn looked at Spike questioningly.
"He thought the overhead was too bright but wouldn't sleep in total darkness. Looks like the battery is wearing out."
"Wes wouldn't sleep in the dark?"
"No. ' Spect he's seen too many demons. Some of them of his own making. I got the feeling he never sleeps in the dark." A loud thumping noise came from the front door, followed by a crash. Spike sighed and shot a look at Gunn. "Speaking of demons of our own making…" He shook his head and walked towards the living room, muttering. "I don't know why I bother to lock the door."
Ilyria strode in. "It is no longer morning," Ilyria informed him.
Spike looked at the clock – 12:01. "No, I suppose it isn't."
Ilyria gave Spike a hard look. "I do not understand this. First, he drinks to forget. Now he drinks to remember. Later he will be ill and regretful."
Spike grinned. "Well yeah, that's about it."
Ilyria turned to Gunn. "And you. He hates you. Then he loves you. He blames you for my existence. And he hates me. Yet he clings to me."
Spike gave a loud humorless laugh.
Ilyria's head swiveled in his direction.
"You can't understand it luv. It's the human condition."
"Yet you seem to participate in this foolishness, vampire."
"That's because sometimes I get confused about what I am."
"Wesley says you secretly wish to fulfill the Shanshu Prophecy."
"Wesley knows nothing," Spiked snapped. "Angel is dead and no one will fulfill the prophecy now. Just take him and go."
Ilyria walked into the bathroom and returned with a groaning Wesley slung in a fireman's carry. Spike and Gunn watched in silence.
When they left, Gunn turned to Spike and said, "Man, that is one freaky ass couple."
"You're telling me?" Spike walked into the tiny kitchen and opened the refrigerator. "Hair of the dog?" He held out a beer.
Gunn thought for a moment and nodded, "Yeah sounds good right now." Gunn and Spike sat on the couch, Spike handed Gunn a beer. They sat in silence for a while drinking companionably. Finally, Gunn turned to Spike and asked in a small voice. "So, uh, was there singing?"
Spiked grinned. Nastily.
"Well mate, I'm afraid there was."
Gunn groaned. "Oh God. I can't sing."
"No you can't," Spike agreed. "And neither can Wesley."
"Oh no, there was group singing."
"I believe you and Wesley were insistent on teaching each other the dances of your youth."
"I believe the one you suggested went something like this…" and with that Spike began to make hand motions somewhat like someone churning butter.
"Oh my God. I didn't do the Cabbage Patch…"
"God has nothing to do with it Charlie. Nothing at all. 'Nother beer?"
"Please." They sat quietly and drank some more. Gunn looked at Spike, opened his mouth, shut it, and turned away.
"Um. Where are my clothes?"
Spike's laughter echoed throughout the apartment.