by Yseult deBreton
RATING: R (contains references to m/m sexual situations, torture, nonconsensual sex)
TIMELINE: The torture scenes during "In the Dark" (Angel 1.3)
SUMMARY: "It’s called addiction, Angel. We all have them."
AUTHOR’S NOTES (1): This was written for the Second Flash Fic-a-thon, specifically for rubywisp. Thanks to Circe_Tigana for the on-the-fly beta.
AUTHOR’S NOTES (2): Original dialogue from the show is used. It's in italics and was written by Douglas Petrie.
DATE OF COMPLETION: 10 June 2003
DISTRIBUTION: Second Flash Fic-a-thon, Yseult’s Passion (http://yseultspassion.com), and my permission.
DISCLAIMER: You know the drill.
FEEDBACK: This is my first true slash fic, so yes, feedback would be nice if only to say "Yseult, never write slash again." You can send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Angel hangs like a slab of meat awaiting the butcher’s masterful handiwork. This butcher is a craftsman, perhaps even an artist. Marcus’ tortured creations are rumored to be sinfully beautiful and exquisitely painful. He has a trunk of agony-inducing tools and a reputation as an expert in the painful extraction of information. Spike relishes the anticipation of Angel’s broken screams. Earlier he had perused Marcus' collection of implements. Two questions had immediately arisen. First, could Marcus be as creative as Angelus, a true master of torture? Second, would the torment end once the Gem’s location was revealed? The answer to the first question was "Possibly." Marcus did not like to boast. The answer to the second question was what sealed Spike’s decision to hire the inquisitor: "At your discretion."
Marcus: His skin. Over two hundred years of living and so little external damage.
Marcus rips open Angel’s shirt. Angel’s body is magnificent. It has form, definition, structure, beauty, and strength. It inspires desire and possession in males and females, humans and demons. It has sheltered Spike from Darla’s shrewish vindictiveness. It has also inflicted its unique brand of misery. One sweet night, in France, it was Angel’s body that introduced him to the carnality of sex. Spike had cried from sheer ecstasy. The next night he cried again as Angel brutally demonstrated the bestial aspects of vampire families. In Spike’s dreams, heaven is Angel’s body. In his nightmares, Hell is also there.
For one slow second, Spike almost lifts his hand to trace the contours of Angel’s chest. Then he raises his eyes to Angel’s face and recognizes the contemptible look reserved just for him. The second passes and Spike lets the familiar emotions of anger and betrayal wash over him again. The only thing that matters is the Gem of Amara. It’s Spike’s ring. He searched for it. He found it. He wore it for two glorious hours. The sun’s lethal rays did not set his skin ablaze. Spike had been invincible.
It’s the Slayer’s fault that Spike is now in a warehouse with a madman and… what is Angel now? An enemy? A traitor? A fallen mentor? A lover? Spike shakes his head. Angel was never his lover.
Marcus: What about internal?
Spike has a varied collection of internal scars. Some are old (Cecily). Some are fresh (Dru). Some perpetually bleed. That category is reserved for Angel because Spike lives in Angel’s constant shadow. Spike’s badness is not as evil. His love is not as passionate. His creativity is not as brilliant. His intellect is not as clever. Spike is not, and will never be, Angel. It chafes him, just a little, every day.
Marcus: He’s known love.
Until Spike knew Angelus, he thought he loved Cecily. Then he realized that what he felt for the insipid girl was misplaced affection. He loves Dru. He would move heaven and earth for his raven-haired beauty. He almost let Angel end the world because she wanted to play. But Spike knew, as soon as he saw Angel and the Slayer, that what he had with Dru paled in comparison. There was no doubt that Angel loved the Slayer. The proof was Angelus’ obsession with her. Spike has never known that all-consuming kind of love.
Spike watches as Marcus rolls a poker in the fire and tests its heat. He admires the grace of the torturer as he pushes the red-hot tool into Angel’s chained body. He smirks as an agonized groan soars above the classical music. Spike loves Angel too.
Marcus: What do you want?
Spike wants the Gem of Amara.
He wants the old Angelus, not the one who tried to take them to Hell.
He wants to understand why he still craves Angel despite their history. He wants to shatter this bond that exists between them.
He wants to hear Angel scream in eternal agony. He wants Angel’s limbs twisted into obscene positions. He wants pieces of Angel to fall on the floor. Spike wants Angel to feel excruciating unending pain, like he did when Angelus left.
Marcus is not living up to Spike’s expectations. There are several pokers skewering Angel’s body, but Spike still doesn’t know where the ring is. Marcus methodically heats another poker, repeats the question, replays his Mozart. Spike doesn’t like the memories that are stirred by this scene. Angelus once told him that torture creates a bond between the victim and the tormentor. A successful torturer uses this bond as part of the interrogation. It’s why Giles told Dru about Acathla. The trick is not to get trapped within it. Marcus is trying to create a bond with Angel; it’s not working. Spike can feel one though. Angel feels it, too; Spike can tell from his eyes. There’s no fear in them. Instead, Spike sees acceptance, determination, pain, judgement, and (always) contempt. If Spike doesn’t leave now, he will stake Angel.
He returns just in time to prevent Marcus’ death. The bald vampire is livid. Spike would have sworn that Marcus was unflappable. Angel has fewer pokers protruding from his body. He is not even close to breaking.
Spike wants answers now. There is a feral gleam in his eye as he grasps the pliers and advances on the captive vampire. Angel's anguished scream momentarily deadens Spike's unremitting heartache.
Spike: It’s called addiction, Angel. We all have them. I believe yours is named Slutty the Vampire Slayer.
Spike’s addiction is Angel.
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