Disclaimer: not mine, this is just for fun
Rating: PG13 at most

Much tho' I like Spike, he deserved this!

The Cup of Perpetual Torment

Angel lay on his back groaning as Spike yanked the stake from his shoulder. “Probably should have dusted you, but honestly? I don’t want to hear her bitching about it.” He stood up and walked over to the Cup of Perpetual Torment.

Angel watched, frozen, as Spike drank its contents down in one gulp. Neither of them had known what to expect, but neither of them had expected nothing at all to happen.

“Fuck –it’s Mountain Dew”. Spike threw the golden goblet onto the ground in disgust. He shrugged and turned to leave, but noticed that Angel wasn’t making any attempt to move.

“Does my heart good to see you like that, but don’t kid me that I kicked your ass so bad that you can’t get up.”

Angel wasn’t listening. It was as though the dam that he had carefully constructed over the past century had finally burst, unleashing a tsunami of pain and grief that completely swamped him. The tiny, fragile but ultimately sustaining, thread of hope that Angel had clung to so desperately had snapped, leaving him drowning in despair. There was nothing left for him now, and the pain burst from him in sudden, appalling heartbroken sobs.

Spike stopped in his tracks, mouth falling open as he watched Angel disintegrate into helpless weeping. The callous remark that he had been about to let fly died on his lips. This was like nothing he’d ever seen before. Angel – stoic, brooding, irritable – yes. Angelus – fearsome, raging, passionate – yes, but this? This was…awful.

“Angel…stop it. Shut up…for Christ’s sake, Angel, stop.”

But Angel was beyond entreaty. He lay on his side, curled up and howling in anguish. Spike couldn’t stand it. He hesitated for a second, torn between running from the sight of his sire brought to such a state, and racing over to him. Instinct prevailed, and Spike grabbed hold of Angel’s jacket and hauled him up into his arms.

“Fuck it, Angel…Sire…Please stop?” He cradled Angel, shushing him, stroking his dark hair, rocking him. Finally, painfully, the torrential weeping lessened, until Angel was lying quiet. Tears still trickled down his face however, and Spike guessed that it was nervous exhaustion rather than anything else that had quieted Angel.

Spike had never really believed that Angel was so very different from the creature he had been before the gypsies had cursed a soul upon him. There was always the overriding suspicion that Angel was playing some kind of game. That underneath the dark, brooding exterior, Angelus still lurked, biding his time. That the whole ‘working for redemption’ caper was a blind of some sort or other. Since he had regained his own soul, Spike’s suspicions had actually deepened. Angel’s apparent inability to shake off his guilt rang even less true now that Spike knew at first hand what happened when that strange spiritual spark was returned to his body. Spike had felt remorse – true – but nothing that couldn’t be put behind him. That was then, and this is now. The soul hadn’t debilitated him, and Spike had been even more dismissive of what he saw as Angel’s posturings. For the first time, Spike wondered if he had been wrong. There was only one way to find out.

“Angel…let me taste you.”

Blood never lies. The body can lie, dissemble, the brain can convince itself of nearly anything, but the blood always reveals the truth. Spike had not experienced – or wanted – this intimacy with Angel since he had abandoned them a century before. And since they had been thrown together once more, he had wanted nothing but to be as far from Angel as he could manage. But now he needed to know.

Angel tensed in Spike’s arms, but didn’t try to pull away as Spike had expected that he would. Slowly, Angel tilted his head so that the strong column of his throat was exposed to Spike’s mouth. His eyes were closed, but the tears still trickled from under Angel’s eyelids as he waited for Spike to bite him.

Spike licked at Angel’s throat, feeling his fangs descending, and gently pierced Angel’s neck. Angel quivered and moaned quietly. Spike didn’t suck, he let the blood – such powerful blood – pool on his tongue before lapping softly at the wound in Angel’s throat.

And then Spike felt it. Angel’s grief was like an avalanche crashing down onto him. The pain of loss, the guilt that weighed Angel down as if he was bound from head to toe in heavy leaden manacles and chains. The taste was overwhelming, burning. Gasping with shock, Spike continued to lap at Angel’s blood. Despair, self-hatred, love….so much love, and nowhere to bestow it, nobody wanting that love…

Angel’s blood scorched a fiery trail of truth through Spike’s consciousness, and he was unmanned by its torment. He began to weep.

And as he wept bitter tears, knowing that Angel’s pain was now his pain – forever – Spike suddenly realised that he had indeed drunk from the Cup of Perpetual Torment, and it wasn’t Mountain Dew, but blood.

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