A delicious aroma tickled Spike’s nose, coaxing him gradually awake. He yawned and opened his eyes, then grinned.


Xander had just walked into the room and was standing beside the bed holding a tray containing, by the smell of it, a bowl of Weetabix, a plate of buttered toast with marmalade, a hot cup of tea – cream and sugar on the side – and another warm mug of blood. Not your everyday brekkie in bed, but Spike was pretty damned pleased. Xander had obviously been up for some time – he was dressed in sweats and a loose t-shirt and his hair smelled freshly washed, but was dry.


“Awww, you shouldn’t’ve, Pet,” Spike purred, scooting back and pushing pillows behind his back to prop himself up. “Not that I’m complaining, mind.”


Xander grinned, avoiding Spike’s eyes as he set the tray on Spike’s lap.


“I just wanted to, um, thank you for last night,” Xander said quietly.


“What, for the rubdown or for flattening your mattress?” Spike chuckled, stalling.


Xander shook his head, but he still didn’t meet Spike’s gaze.


“You know,” he said, almost inaudibly.


“Ah.” Spike patted the side of the bed; reluctantly Xander sat down. “Have bad dreams often, Pet?”


Xander shrugged uncomfortably.


“That must’ve been a doozy,” Spike said quietly. “You were crying in your sleep. Tears an’ all.”


Xander looked as though he’d rather be anywhere but here, but he said nothing, twisting the covers between his fingers.


Not the first time, then. Figures.


Spike deliberately turned to his breakfast, gulping down the blood before it could cool.


“Dru used to do that sometimes,” he said casually. “Cry in her sleep. Sometimes she’d pull at her hair, too, hard enough to pull some out. Sometimes she’d scratch at herself, hard enough to bleed. I ‘spect it was from some of the things Angelus did to her ‘round the time he turned her. Glad I wasn’t around back then. ‘Course – “ He chuckled ruefully. “He wasn’t all that sweet after I came along, either.”


Xander glanced up at Spike with an unreadable expression.


“Did he ever – hurt you?” he asked hesitantly.


“Hurt me? Lots of times,” Spike said, shrugging. “What, hurt as in rape? Hmmm.” He shrugged again. “Don’t know as that word really applies to a vampire an’ his Childe. It’s different. Hard to explain. Even times you might not really want it, you wouldn’t say no even if you could. Got to remember, Pet, Angelus was my Sire twice over – ‘cause he was Dru’s Sire, and ‘cause she wasn’t usually in no fit state to take care of me, teach me what’s what, so he pretty much took over the job. Gave me his blood, too, time and again, so he might’s well have been the one to turn me. And a master vampire can do what he pleases with his Childer or his minions.”


Xander eagerly seized on a change of subject.


“That’s something I wanted to ask you,” he said. “I mean, what makes a master vampire? And what’s the difference between a Childe and a – a minion?”


Spike started in on his toast.


“Hmm. Answer’s the same, Pet,” he said. “If a vampire’s powerful enough to make and control Childer, he’s a master vampire. Any vampire can make minions. They’re lackeys, expendable troops, errand boys, you name it. Drain a mortal, give him just a bit of your blood right before he dies, then he’ll rise up a minion. He’ll dig his way out of the grave, and the vampire who made him can keep him, or leave him to fend for himself. They’re not all that strong, minions, generally don’t last all that long. They get fried in the daylight or run afoul of a Slayer or whatnot, or other minions stake ‘em just to be rid of the competition for their master’s favor.


“Childer are different. They’re made special,” Spike reflected. “When they’re drained, they’re given more of the master’s blood, and generally after they’re turned he’ll give ‘em more from time to time. Makes them lots more powerful, which is why it takes a master to control Childer. Most often they aren’t left to be buried and rise on their own; the master’ll just keep ‘em in his lair until they wake. The master cares for ‘em, teaches ‘em, keeps ‘em around for fucking and companionship until eventually he either gets tired of ‘em and stakes ‘em or kicks ‘em out, or when they get strong enough to make Childer of their own, they set out on their own, or they fight it out with their Sire for power and one or the other gets dusted. Don’t often see two master vampires together for long; they don’t like to share power. Dru was an exception, like I said, for Angelus and for me, too.”


“So – “ Xander frowned. “Could a master kind of, well, promote a minion to a Childe if he gave it more of his blood?”


“Could.” Spike shrugged. “Doesn’t happen much. Minions are infantry, so to speak. Mostly a vampire isn’t too picky about who he turns for minions. Childer, though, they’re chosen ‘cause the master wants them specially for that.” Childer were often turned Consorts, too, but Spike didn’t want to get into that with Xander, especially right now. Wouldn’t do to have Xander wondering about Spike’s motivations in having him here. Especially since Spike wasn’t all that sure of his motivations himself. Time for his own change of subject.


“Not that I don’t appreciate the whole breakfast-in-bed bit, Pet,” Spike said, sipping his tea, “but what’s the idea waking me up while it’s still – “ He glanced at the clock. God, noon! “ – the middle of the night, vampire wise?”


“Oh. Uh.” Xander looked embarrassed. “I, uh, called Willow, see? To thank her for helping me move in, and for that liniment. And she asked if I wanted to have lunch. So anyway, she’s going to ditch her afternoon classes, borrow Giles’ car and pick me up, and pick up some takeout, and we’re gonna go back to her dorm room and, you know, talk. Anyway, I didn’t want you to wake up and just find me gone.”


“Oh.” Spike stifled his irritation. Of course, he’d known the whelp wasn’t going to stay here with him shut away from the world forever, but he’d hoped for at least a few more days. “Well, have fun, then, Pet.”


“And there’s a meeting at Giles’ tonight,” Xander continued, looking at Spike apologetically. “Willow and I could just come by and pick you up on the way there?”


Oh, bloody wonderful. Sounds more than lunch – sounds like the whole afternoon. Followed by an ever-so-riveting Scooby meeting hosted by this year’s winner of the poker-up-the-arse awards.


Spike sighed.


“Right, then,” he said resignedly. “I suppose if I must.”


“Um. Well.” Xander swallowed, looking at the floor now. “They said I didn’t have to bring you. But, um, wouldyoumind?” he blurted out. “I mean, I know you hate those meetings butI’dfeelbetterif – “


Well, now isn’t that interesting, Spike thought, suddenly interested. The fact that Xander wanted him along for – what, immoral support? – was very interesting indeed.


“Sure, Pet,” he said, more cheerfully. “Glad to.”


Xander looked so utterly relieved that Spike felt another bewildering pang of that anxiety/pleasure. He made a mental decision he’d been putting off.


“Had anything for pain this afternoon?” he asked casually, setting the tray aside and getting out of bed.


“Uh, no.” Xander shook his head. “They make me so sleepy – “


“Well, then, we’ll just give you half, eh?” Spike said cheerfully. “Sitting around a dorm room all afternoon and sitting around Giles’ all evening’s going to be hard on all those bruises. And better put some shoes on if you’re going out.”


Spike broke one of the pain pills in two, then went to the kitchen, remembering that Willow had bought Xander – yeah, there. A big bottle of spicy V-8, probably a Willow addition since Xander never consumed anything that healthy. Spike poured a small glass, then glanced into the living room, satisfying himself that Xander was still in the bedroom, putting on his shoes.


Casually, Spike bit into his thumb, hard, letting a small quantity of his blood drip into the glass – as much as he thought he could get away with taste-wise. He stirred the V-8 thoroughly, then carried glass and broken pill in to Xander.


“There you go, Pet,” he said, handing them over. Xander swallowed the pill and took a sip of V-8 to wash it down, then licked his lips and drained the glass, tapping the bottom to get as much out as possible.


“Willow’s always trying to make me drink that stuff,” Xander chuckled, handing Spike the glass back. “It’s good, though. I’m surprised. Just don’t decide to start reusing the nice glass empties, okay? I’d hate to get it mixed up with your bottles.”


Spike chuckled.


“’s a deal, Pet,” he said cheerfully, taking the glass back to the kitchen. He plunked himself down in front of the telly with his bowl of Weetabix when Xander left, never minding that they’d gone soggy. He chuckled to himself. In this case, at least, what Xander didn’t know wouldn’t hurt him.


Those first few drops of blood exchanged the night Spike had brought Xander home, that had forged a bond between them – an almost insignificant, tenuous bond, but a bond nonetheless. The additional blood Spike had given the mortal tonight was enough to give him a healing boost, work on the bruises and the cracked bones. If Spike could manage a few additional doses, Xander would be back to fighting trim in no time. He’d have to be careful, though. He didn’t want the Slayer or the others remarking on Xander’s healing speed, and if Xander ingested enough of Spike’s blood, the effects would go beyond accelerated healing and might even set off Buffy’s slayer-sense. But every drop of blood shared between Spike and Xander drew them closer together, and to a point, at least, that was the idea.


Spike smirked and settled back comfortably on the sofa, ready to doze the afternoon away. Matters were progressing swimmingly. He’d rescued Xander and got him settled securely in Spike’s lair. The lad was grateful and obviously attracted to Spike, too, and sooner or later teenage hormones were going to win out over whatever was holding the mortal back. The Scooby gang weren’t going to interfere; rather, they supported Xander’s change of habitat, and for Xander’s sake, at least, were prepared to treat Spike with some increased measure of tolerance. So there was nothing preventing Spike from protecting Xander, courting him, steering the lad toward the inevitable – Spike’s bed. From all indications, Xander wanted to be there as much as Spike wanted him there.


Spike didn’t question the tenderness and affection he felt for the boy, disturbingly like the tenderness he’d felt for Dru . . . yet somehow different, and he didn’t particularly want to examine that difference either. He wanted to protect and fuck the boy, that was all, and he had one and was fast headed toward the other, and that was good enough for William the Bloody.


Spike smiled at the blackout curtains, checked his watch, and turned on the telly. Passions would be on soon, and he’d have time for a nice nap after.




Spike woke, as was his habit, about an hour before sundown. He took a nice leisurely bath, heated another cup of blood and picked out his clothes for the evening – black jeans and a t-shirt, nothing fancy, because he had the suspicion there might be action in the plan if, as he thought, the meeting at Giles’ was over some evil doings in Sunnyhell. He’d just finished up and slipped the last knife into his boot when he heard a knock on the door; he opened it, surprised to see Xander standing there.


“Blimey, Pet, you could just let yourself in,” Spike scolded. “You’re not a vampire, don’t need an invitation. ‘Sides, it’s your place too, now.”


Xander smiled sheepishly.


“I locked the door after me when I left,” he explained. “I couldn’t get back in.”


“Oh.” Spike rummaged through the drawer of the desk beside the door, coming up with the spare key. “There you go, solves that problem.”


Xander stared at the key as if Spike had handed him a sack of gold.


“You – you’re giving me a key? To your place?”


Spike snorted.


“Hearing’s gone wonky, Pet,” he said. “Our place, didn’t I just say? So. Off to Giles’?”


“Uh.” Xander was still blinking at the key. At last he slid it onto his keychain with an expression of wonder still on his face. “Uh, yeah. If you’re ready to go.”


“Pet, I was born ready,” Spike smirked.


He’d worried just a bit about what Xander might have told Willow about him, or rather them, but the red-haired witch seemed no different than usual – chatting amiably, trying to draw shy Tara out about her day in school, bemoaning the fact that they’d all have to walk home after the meeting since Giles would undoubtedly want his car back.


“We could stop and pick up my car,” Xander offered. “It’s better than nothing. Maybe.”


“Didn’t know you had a car, Pet,” Spike said, raising his eyebrows. When he’d stayed in Xander’s basement apartment, Xander had occasionally had the use of his uncle Rory’s car while said uncle’s license was suspended for drunk driving, but Spike had heard nothing about Xander having a car of his own.


“My uncle wrecked his convertible,” Xander said abashedly. “It was never really the same after that, so he sold it to me for, like, practically nothing, since his license was revoked altogether anyway. It runs most of the time.”


“Where is it?” Spike asked suspiciously. From the miserable expression on Xander’s face, he guessed before Xander answered quietly, “At my – I mean, my parents’ house. Not right in front, but across the street.”


“Right. Give over the keys,” Spike said, holding out his hand and taking the keys firmly. “Drop me off half a block or so down, will you, Red, and I’ll fetch it on over.”


“Really?” Xander said, such relief in his tone that Spike felt himself wince inside.


“Well, can’t have your mum and dad seeing the state you’re in and calling the police,” Spike said, faking a bored tone, although he reached over surreptitiously and squeezed Xander’s hand. “They hear how you got pounded, then I’m hauled down to the station to give a statement. Don’t fancy trying to explain little things like my lack of proper ID, or why I’ve got to be out of the bloody station before sunrise.”


Willow giggled and even Tara smiled; Xander gave Spike a slightly anxious look, as if the insecure whelp actually believed Spike was only thinking of himself, and Spike was forced to give Xander another hand-squeeze and a wink to boot, secure in the knowledge that if Willow was looking in the rearview mirror she couldn’t see a damned thing. Xander smiled then, relaxing.


Willow dropped Spike off at the end of Xander’s street, and Spike took advantage of the shadows to make his way stealthily to Xander’s car. The car didn’t look too horribly banged up – apparently Xander had hammered out some of the worst dents – but it ran with a nasty “money” sound that meant it was probably on its last legs, so to speak. Well, he’d have a look at it. He’d had motorcycles from time to time, loved the damned things, and he’d learned a good bit of mechanics mostly by trial and error. Meanwhile, at least the rattletrap would probably get him to Giles’ and get them home afterwards without them having to risk walking down Sunnydale’s streets after dark. Xander was just starting to heal up; he certainly didn’t need Spike’s good work undone by a run-in with one of Sunnydale’s darkside inhabitants. And while Spike was ready, willing and able to defend the whelp and the witches against any of the ‘Dale’s nonhuman nasties, he was the only real fighter of the four of them; worse, if they ran into the bloody Initiative, Xander was just barmy enough to jump right in to keep Spike from being recaptured.


The car made it to Giles’ house and cut out with what Spike optimistically told himself was not a death rattle. The others were already there, of course, but Xander was dawdling in the doorway, and Spike felt a little frisson of pleasure at the way the mortal’s eyes brightened at his arrival.


“Xander, for heaven’s sake, close the door,” Giles called from inside. “You’re letting in the mosquitoes.”


“Sorry, I was – uh – watching out for the pizzas,” Xander said abashedly. He stepped aside to let Spike in. “Spike’s here.”


“Speaking of bloodsucking pests,” Buffy muttered loudly enough for everyone to hear.


“Nice to see you too, Pet,” Spike said cheerfully. After the look Xander had given him, practically nothing could bother him. He handed the car keys over to Xander.


Willow shoved Buffy out of the recliner so Xander could sit there, although Spike grinned to himself to see Xander moving with much less pain this evening; the bruising on his face was visibly less, too. Buffy apparently noticed it too.


“You’re looking better already,” she said suspiciously. “Want to tell us about your miracle cure?”


Xander grinned happily, squeezing Willow’s hand.


“It’s this fantastic liniment Wills and Tara whipped up for me,” he said. “I’ve got to hand it to you two. That stuff’s incredible.”


Spike smirked. Buffy scowled at him and opened her mouth as if to retort, but Spike interrupted.


“What’s this, then?” he said, poking at a plaster cast of a nasty-looking three-taloned foot.


“Subject of tonight’s meeting,” Willow said, sighing. “Multi-legged, as-yet-unidentified nasty that jumped out of a bush and ate a couple of teenagers making out in the park. As if anybody in their right minds makes out in Sunnydale’s park after dark.” She grimaced. “It left parts. Yucky parts.”


Spike grinned rather smugly, then raised his eyebrow, cocking his head.


“Pizza’s here,” he said, frowning at the rapidity of the delivery. “What, you couldn’t wait for us before you ordered it?”


Buffy smiled sweetly.


“Just thought we’d order ahead,” she said. She collected money from Giles and answered the door, bringing the boxes to the table. “Three extra large, family size order of garlic bread.” She glanced slyly at Spike. “Oops, my bad,” she added insincerely.


Spike fought down a snarl, his good mood eroding. He could smell the garlic from here. He could also smell the pizzas – one cheese, two vegetarian. No supreme or meat lover’s for the vampire, or that Hawaiian crap that Xander liked. Funny, now that he thought about it, how many times Scooby refreshments had fallen into a similar pattern.


“Buffy, Dawn’s the only one who eats plain cheese,” Willow said, wrinkling her brow, “and Spike and Xander don’t like vegetarian. I thought we were going to get – “


“Must’ve made a mistake,” Buffy said cheerfully. “Oh, well. Sorry. You’ll have to try it our way for a change.”


“It’s okay,” Xander said, his resigned expression telling Spike just how often this sort of thing had happened before. “Spike, don’t worry, I’ll call and order something with meat on it for – “


“Got a better idea,” Spike said, looking Buffy straight in the eye. “Got any blood, Giles?”


The Watcher looked relieved at the prospect of heading the conflict off.


“Yes, I was going to give you a few packets tonight.”


“Then how about this, Pet?” Spike said, leaning over the table, putting both hands on top of the pizza boxes. “How ‘bout I take a couple packets of that blood and just drizzle it over those pizzas and you can try it my way for a change?”


Glaring at Spike, Buffy deliberately grabbed a piece of garlic bread from the bag and bit into it.


“Maybe you’d like an appetizer first,” she said, blowing in his face.


Spike had the good sense and quick reflexes not to breathe the garlic fumes in – he didn’t need to breathe, after all, other than to talk or smoke – but garlic vapors bathed his face and eyes in liquid fire, as if he’d been sprayed with acid. Roaring with pain and temporarily blinded, he stumbled backward, tripping over the coffee table and falling. He tried to regain his feet, howling with rage now, hell-bent on ripping the Slayer’s face off, but instantly a warm, heavy body landed on top of his and icy cold liquid doused his face, making him sputter indignantly as he struggled against the restraining weight.


“It’s me, it’s me, don’t move,” Xander said right in his ear, and instantly, confused and angry and still hurting, Spike went still. He didn’t want to set off the chip, but more, he didn’t want to hurt Xander. “Just stay still, relax, if you go after her you’ll set off the chip and then you’ll really be hurting,” Xander continued without pausing. Then, louder, “Willow, get me a soapy wet washcloth and a plain wet washcloth, okay? Hurry. And some water in a glass. Damn it, Buffy, what the fuck were you thinking?”


“He threatened my pizza,” Buffy protested.


“I’ll threaten more than that, princess,” Spike snarled, struggling against Xander’s weight again. The mortal only clung more tightly, his body rubbing against Spike’s intoxicatingly, and the distraction was enough to stop him moving again. Cold liquid was running through his hair and into his ears, and he finally identified the smell – Xander’s coke, which the mortal had apparently flung in his face. Annoying, but good thinking; the soft drink had stopped the burning from the garlic fumes.


“Oh, yeah? You and what Initiative microchip, oh fangless wonder?” Buffy said smugly.


“Really, Buffy, that was quite uncalled for,” Giles said firmly. “Ah, Willow, give me those, please. No, Xander, stay where you are, if you will. I’m going to rinse his eyes, and he may not like it.”


“I’m not a bleedin’ dog that’ll turn and bite,” Spike snarled, realizing that he was showing fangs even as he spoke. He held still as water ran over his eyes, and a soft dry cloth cautiously blotted up the excess.


“Can you see?” Giles asked with at least a trace of sympathy. Spike blinked, and blinked again. He could see – somewhat – although the images were badly blurred. Definitely a few extra broken bones for Her Buffyness, oh yes indeed.


“Some,” Spike said grudgingly. He glared in Buffy’s general direction. “Good enough.”


“Oh, gee, so not intimidated here,” came Buffy’s smug reply, and just when Spike thought he might manage to retract his fangs.


“Um – “ Giles retreated slightly. “I think this alcohol might work better than soap to get any garlic residue off your skin, but it might sting a bit and – er – “


“I’ll do it,” Xander said, taking the gauze pad from Giles. “Hold still, okay? I’ll try to be careful.”


Spike closed his mouth and held still. It stung more than a bit on what were probably open sores, but right now anything that wasn’t garlic felt bloody good. Xander swabbed his face off carefully, then went over it again with the warm soapy washcloth, then the clean washcloth. At last Spike pushed Xander aside – gently – and sat up.


“Thanks, Pet,” he said, trying to sound casual. “Got a towel? Don’t fancy coke running down the back of my neck.”


“Oh.” Xander handed him a towel; Spike only had the blurriest glance of the whelp, but he could almost hear the sheepish smile. “Sorry about that.”


“Don’t be,” Spike said, shrugging. “Helped a lot. Quick thinking, there.”


“You look awful,” Willow said, her tone concerned. “Buffy, how could you do that?”


“He threatened my pizza,” Buffy repeated. “And he got in my face. These actions have consequences.”


“You rather provoked him,” Giles chided gently.


“Excuse me?” Buffy said smugly. “You chained him in the bathtub for drinking blood out of your favorite mug, and I’m provoking him ‘cause he doesn’t like what I got on the pizza?”


Xander opened his mouth to say something, probably in Spike’s defense, and Spike intervened hastily, laying a hand on Xander’s arm.


“Never mind, Pet,” he said loftily. “Guess I can see Her Blondness’s got no use for vampiric strength, brilliant night vision, or a century’s worth of expertise in fighting unnatural critters, so I’ll just collect my packets of Miss Piggy and slink back to my lair.”


“I’ll go with you,” Xander said immediately.


“Huh?” Spike blinked, wishing to hell his vision would clear enough to see Xander’s expression. He’d counted on Xander wanting to stay here and do the “talk it to death” thing with the Scoobies, where he’d be in danger of nothing more lethal than Buffy’s taste in pizza.


“You can’t drive if you can’t see,” Xander said practically.


“I was planning on walking, so you could drive the girls home,” Spike replied quickly.


“Well, you can’t walk if you can’t see, either,” Xander argued. He fished the keys out of his pocket and handed them to Willow. “Besides, if they don’t need your help, they sure don’t need mine, since I don’t have vampiric strength or night vision or a century’s worth of experience. So I’ll walk you back.”


There was really no protest Spike could make to that without arguing suspiciously in front of the others, so he sighed, waited through Willow and Giles’ perfunctory protests, accepted the mini-cooler of blood packs Giles handed him, and followed Xander out the door.


“I wanted you to stay,” Spike grumbled as they walked away from the house.


“Yeah, I kinda got the message,” Xander said wryly, grabbing Spike’s arm and carefully steering him around what turned out to be a big hole in the sidewalk. “Which means you’re up to something, which means no way am I letting you go off alone.”


“Well . . . “ Spike shrugged. “Could be I planned to walk home through the park.”


Xander stopped, pulling Spike to a stop with him.


“As in,” he said slowly, “’park where necking teenagers were just disassembled by three-toed nasties’ park?”


“That’s the one,” Spike acknowledged with a grin. “It’ll properly put a bug up the Slayer’s butt if poor little chiphead Spike settles the monster without her, won’t it?”


“Uh, Spike?” Xander said even more slowly. “Were you faking? Your eyes, I mean.”


Spike shrugged.


“Not faking, but it doesn’t matter,” he said. “Vorgosts are actually pretty slow.”


“You know what that thing is?” Xander said hesitantly. “And you didn’t tell anyone?”


Spike snorted.


“Like they was asking,” he retorted. “Like they’d even listen if I did, ey?”


“Well – point,” Xander acknowledged, trailing along when Spike started walking again. “So . . . you think you’re okay to take this thing on when you can hardly see?”


Spike snorted again.


“I can handle it,” he said shortly.


“Well, then, since there obviously isn’t much danger, it can’t hurt for me to go with you,” Xander said triumphantly.


Spike sighed irritably.


“Pet, danger or no, all it takes is one good slap against a tree and those ribs are going to feel a whole lot worse,” he said. He stumbled, and Xander grabbed his elbow again, steadying him.


“Um, Spike, don’t know how to tell you this, but if you can’t handle a broken sidewalk alone, what makes you think you can fight anything?” Xander said hesitantly.


Spike rolled his eyes.


“Won’t matter so much when I’m on the hunt,” he groused, but he had a strong suspicion that this wasn’t an argument he was going to win.


“Fine. Then I’ll just be a spectator,” Xander said firmly. “Until and unless you need me to do more than – uh – spectate.”


Spike sighed again, obscurely pleased.


“Right, then,” he said resignedly. He crooked his elbow outward invitingly. “May I invite you, good sir, for a moonlight walk in the park? A bit of brisk exercise of an evening?”


“Why, good sir,” Xander grinned, looping his arm through Spike’s, “I wouldn’t miss it for the world. Vorgosts of Sunnydale, beware!”


“Have no fear, Spike and Xander are here!” Spike quipped, suddenly strangely happy. “Come on, Pet, I fancy a spot of dinner. Something on the lively side.”


“Yeah, but we’re calling out for pizza for me,” Xander said, wrinkling his nose. “Seeing as I just walked out on my dinner.”


Spike snorted.


“Veggie pizza with the Slayer or Meat Lover’s Special with me?” he prompted. And I’d love to give you a bit of my meat, Pet. Or have some of yours, whichever.


“Hawaiian,” Xander bargained.


“Meat Lover’s with extra ham?”


“And pineapple?”


“If you’re adding friggin’ pineapple, Pet, I’m adding blood. Got it?”


“Ulp. All right, no pineapple.”




Email: Shadow