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”Cos it's complicated.”

“I don't see how. I remember having to do a project at school and I had to research the Lavelles and the Harris'. It was kinda fun although my dad got really pissed because it reminded him that the Lavelles have so much money and they always Lord it over my Mom. I used to get hand me downs which thinking back, explains a lot about my fashion choices in school. But all that's beside the point – it was a really interesting experience and I think it could be fun.”

“You talking about the human lot or the vampire??” Spike shifted him around in the bed until their legs were entangled and they were sharing one pillow.

“You going to sleep?”

“No, just getting all comfy like.”

“So what – oh yeah, human or vampire? Well, I guess human is out – hard to do that without computers and getting all researchy. Can you tell me about the vampire ones?”

“It gets complicated luv – okay, fine, let me think. Well, Dru and Angelus sired me; Darla sired the great pouf when he was a drunken lout in Ireland. An' she was sired by ol' Batface. He was big on all the rituals and rules – thought Angelus needed to be taught some manners. Didn't think much of me an' Dru either – she irritated him something fierce cos she was so flighty. He wanted to keep her around though, cos of her visions and the like.”

“Why didn't he like you??” It was a bit like a macabre story-time and he snuggled a little closer.

“Said I didn't understand the importance of the bigger picture.” He sniggered – that was Spike all over. Spike's hand sliding under the blankets stood a chance of distracting him but he was interested and wanted more detail. “Thing is, the bigger picture was cheating far as I could see.” He smiled. Spike was strangely rigid about the right and wrong of some things. There was a right way and wrong way to do certain things. Just as an example, hunting took place away from the school and the kiddies – they weren't a real challenge and any demon worth it's rep didn't go for easy.

“So how was he cheating? Was it something to do with the Harvest?” He vaguely remembered it from when Buffy first came to town.

“He wanted to farm humans – drain 'em dry and bottle them. Just – all kinds of wrong. If you wanna eat, you gotta put in a bit of effort. How you gonna make the most of natural selection if you make it too easy.”

“Natural selection?”

“Yeah, like the Slayer. She gets rid of the dross – you know, the fledges that can barely make it outta the grave, the demons who are too stupid to keep things low-key. Natural selection.”

“Oh, I get it. So, what, this whole bottled blood thing removes the need for hunting, therefore cheating?”

“And boring. Unlife can get tedious sometimes an' a bit of a hunt, a bit of violence makes all the difference. Ol' Punchmouth wanted to get rid of all of that – cheating.”

”You have a point.” With a sigh, Xander turned and buried his face in Spike's neck, breathing deeply of the familiar scent. So relaxing, almost soporific and he almost completely forgot about learning more about Spike's familial relationships. Almost. But he wanted to know something a bit more specific.

“So, I know Angel turned a few others. What about you – no particular siring urges?” A silky hand stroked down his side, palm coming to rest on the curve of his ass as he turned more fully into the embrace.

“Hard to think about being a sire when you're babysitting a half mad seer mate. Dru was pretty much my sole interest for over a hundred years – no time or inclination to sire anyone to be another pain in my arse! O' course, once Dru went off with that slimy bastard - “

“Wait! Are you saying if Drusilla was still around - “

“Don't pout love! Karma works in mysterious ways – seems to me that if Dr hadn't off with her Chaos Demon, I wouldn't have comeback to the Hellmouth when I did an' I wouldn't have come across you fighting off a few too many vampires.”

“I was doing okay.” He knew he sounded sullen and petulant but he didn't want to just be a pain in Spike's ass. He knew he had a lot to live up to but he didn't want to be a weak consolation prize.

“Hey, I know that don't I? Was part of what I liked about you – how much of a fight you were putting up. Didn't just lie back and wait to die. Seemed like every-time I saw you, you were taking a rock to a gunfight – liked that, liked that a lot.”

“Enough to put up with me being a pain in your ass?”

“From here to eternity.” He snuggled closer, as always taken aback by just how much of a romantic Spike could be. It was nice though – nice to be loved that much, valued that much. It made a change from how his life had been pre-Spike. Which was how this all came about when it came down to it. “Gonna have to make a move tomorrow – they've got a bit close again.” He gave a heavy sigh, appreciating it when Spike's arms tightened around him.

“Are they ever going to give up?? We left Sunnydale and it's not like they gave a rat's ass when I was alive.” He felt Spike's cheek move and pulled back slightly so that he could see his sire's facial expression properly. “What are you grinning at?”

“They cared but a bit like Dru – only appreciate something when it's gone. They'll give up eventually – we just need to keep a coupla steps ahead of them until then. 'Sides, sounds like your family tree's about as complicated as mine once you include the in-laws!”

“Ha ha!” Almost automatically, he adjusted as Spike tugged him over onto his back, sliding between his legs so that they were groin to groin.

“But seems like the family hasn't extended much – your family have made a bit of a practice of killing off my family.”

“Well, your side did have a nasty habit of feeding on people.”

“Details.” Judging by the very obvious response Spike was pressing against him, taking about family was pretty much over and done with. Not that he cared – he had his answer. Spike didn't regret turning him and that was all he cared about. “'Sides I'm your family now luv.”

“Yeah, guess that makes us the black sheep huh? Not gonna be invited in for Christmas or anything! Show me how evil you can be blondie!”

“Oh pet, you have no idea!”


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