Summary: Post S1ish, I'm thinking.
Disclaimer: Fanfic, no money, no sue.
Note:Thanks to violetsmiles for the beta. This is what happens when you cross blooming Angel obsession with already anchored Xander fixation.
It seems like he's been watching Angel all his life. Wary, jealous, angry light in their eyes. Both of them, mirrors. Irritated by each other's presence like scratchy wool rubbing against skin, sensitive to every breath, inhaled or not.
Xander's been hard since he met him. Angel knows it. It's some sort of aberration, though. A supernatural abnormality that he's tried to accept.
The Bronze, alley, shiny ground and shadowy corners -- Xander turns around and he's there. This is it. It ends here.
Angel's close enough that Xander can see the muscle in his jaw clench.
"What are you doing, Xander?" he asks. His voice is as hard as his eyes.
"Running for president," Xander says sarcastically. "What's it look like I'm doing? I'm taking a leak."
"In an alley, at night, in Sunnydale." Angel's voice is dry. "Thought you were smarter than that. Don't know why."
"Fuck you, Deadboy," Xander says, and he goes to brush past him. Only he doesn't get far.
"Don't walk away from me," Angel says. He has his hand on Xander's arm, holding him in place.
Xander moves in front of Angel, so that he's looking up at him slightly, face to set face. "Don't tell me what to do."
Angel moves so fast that Xander feels dizzy, like he's on a ride at the fair, some bastardized version of demonic teacups. There's damp brick against his back as Angel presses him against the alley wall, the cold wetness seeps through his shirt and he's clenching every muscle in his body to keep from shaking.
"Do you want to die?" Angel's jaw is clenched and the words come out, quiet and seething. Blunt. "Did you come out here wanting some demon to take a chunk out of you?"
"I've got a stake. I can use it." I've used it one too many times.
Angel has the fabric of the front of his shirt grasped in his hands, pulling and straining and pushing him harder against the wall. "You think you'll be able to get to it when you've got something at your throat?"
Xander's heart is beating, pounding, slamming in his chest. His mouth is dry. He's got fear pumping through his veins and racing through his head. It's making his stomach clench and there's ice cold sweat at his temple and the back of his neck.
"You think you'll have a thought in your head when something moves in for the kill?" Angel says, moving in and ducking his head. He murmurs against Xander's bobbing Adam's apple. "I could rip your throat out right now, Xander."
Xander thinks he's falling. He can feel the street opening up beneath him and the empty places coming up and consuming him. He feels the world gone like a list of regrets burned up with one sulfur match, gone like the flakes of ash that were Jesse. There's nothing left for him except the feel of those cool lips on his damp throat.
Xander's hands come up to clutch at Angel through the leather of his coat, and he doesn't know if he's trying to hold Angel further away or closer to him. He doesn't know if he wants to drop, stone heavy to the bottom of a drowning river, or if he wants to fly.
But then Angel places a kiss at his throbbing jugular and he's soaring. One kiss, so light and quick that he thinks that maybe he imagined it. But it's wrong, wrong. Kisses are for girls and mothers and drunk aunts who pinch your cheeks like you're still eight years old. They aren't for times when you're feeling like prey just run down on some African grassland.
Xander doesn't have time to analyze it, though, because Angel's moving away from him like nothing ever happened, and Xander's slumping to the ground, weak and limp as if Angel did just drain him.
"Don't do it again," Angel says, and then he's gone.
Xander's on the ground. His clothes are wet from the dampness of the wall and ground and his own fear scented sweat. At least that's what he's telling himself it is -- fear. Couldn't possibly be anything else.
He's been hard since he met Angel. It's just some crazy fluke.
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