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Long List of Grievances : A/S

Title: Long List of Grievances
Series: Birthday fics, gabrielleabelle
Pairing: Andrew/Spike...ish
Rating: PG-13 for language and references to violence, sex, and alcohol
Setting: Season 7, post-Empty Places
Word Count: 2,014 words

Disclaimer: Buffy the Vampire Slayer was created by Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. All characters, places, and events are the property of the aforementioned and Twentieth Century Fox.

Summary: Andrew thinks a meal might help them see eye to eye. Spike thinks a drink or five will do the trick.


“This helmet's a little big.”

“Fit the munchkin all right,” Spike answered, deadpan.

“But Dawn's head could be bigger than average. Would you pull over? There might be a way to adjust it.”

“It's a football helmet, mate. They're sized.”

“Are they?” Andrew asked.

“They are,” Spike confirmed. He couldn't claim surprise. Andrew wasn't the type to know a great deal about football. Or helmets, for that matter. Spike had met a motorcycle crash victim back in New York who hadn't worn a helmet.

“Met” might not have been the right word, of course.

It wasn't sunlight, but the headlights rising over a slope made him squint until they passed. His eyes adjusted quickly, as they always do, and the winding road unlit by streetlights stretched out in front of him.

“It's dark,” Andrew piped up. If he could breathe, Spike would have sighed irritably.

“It's night,” he cut back. Andrew's arms tightened around his waist.

“I just meant there are no lights.”

“I noticed.”

“The no lights, or that that's what I meant?” Andrew asked. Spike closed his eyes and started counting to ten, but then opened his eyes again when he remembered that he was driving a motorcycle and that doing so with his eyes closed wasn't the best idea under even the most ideal circumstances. Taking a deep breath, again, was out of the question.

He briefly considered how Buffy would react if he just tossed Andrew off the bike.

“Bloody soul,” he muttered quietly. He caught himself speeding up. Part of him recognized that if he crashed, he would very likely survive, whereas Andrew with his helmet that was slightly too big would probably be roadkill. His soul, battered and dusty though it might be, didn't make that thought as bothersome as it should have.

Might do to have Red check that out when he got back.

“Hey, you know what this reminds me of?” Andrew asked. Before Spike could tell him how much he needed to shut up, he continued. “The swoop chase in Return of the Jedi. When Luke's riding shotgun to Leia and they're chasing the scout troopers. Remember?”

Lemme get this straight. I'm Leia in this scenario?” Spike confirmed.

Yeah,” Andrew said. “Hey, if you see another biker on the road, could you pull up alongside him?”

So you can jump on his bike and throw him off, I imagine?” Andrew was quiet for a minute.

Maybe that wouldn't be a good idea,” he said. “My days of evil are behind me. I'm on a road to redemption.”

Aren't we all,” Spike stated bluntly, not even tilting his voice to make it a question. “I got my soul. Red's got her thing. Even Boy Blunder's tryin' to fix things with his bonnie lass.”

There does seem to be a continuous theme of regret among our band of misfits,” Andrew said, and Spike wondered just who it was that had influenced him to talk like that. “We've all had skeletons in our closets.”

Sometimes literally,” Spike offered offhandedly.

What's that?”


Indeed, we're like Jedi who've fallen perilously close to the dark side of the Force, only to return to the light. Like Anakin Skywalker and Ulic Qel-Droma before him, we've learned from our tangles with temptation and have become stronger by them.”

Ulic who?” Spike asked, mentally kicking himself afterward. Kids like this, they didn't need encouragement.

Qel-Droma,” Andrew continued. “A Jedi of the Old Republic.”

I thought Anakin was the one from the Old Republic.”

Puh-lease,” Andrew countered. “That's just a few decades BBY. The Fairly Recent Republic's more accurate.”

Yeah, but it's one or the other, right? New Republic, Old Republic.”

I'm talking about the old Old Republic,” Andrew huffed. “With x6 hyperdrives and the Mandalorian race and more than two Sith Lords at a time. There could'a been ten at a time! No limit!”

Well, that'd just create an imbalance of power,” Spike said. “Ever heard of the fall of Rome?”

Were you around for that!?” Andrew asked excitedly. “I really liked Gladiator, so—”

'Bout fifteen hundred years too young, mate,” Spike groused. Well, this had been a mistake. Pop a gasket on this kid and he'd gush for hours. Another set of headlights half-blinded him. Spike wondered if anyone would blame him for swerving in front of what looked to be a big rig.

Oh. That sucks.” The big rig passed, and his arms tightened a little more around Spike's waist.

Little tight there, Andrew,” Spike offered.

Sorry. It makes me feel safe.”

All right!” Spike finally shouted. He swerved, fully intending to pull over, but it was by providence of luck that there was an exit. He followed it to its end, even as Andrew veritably squeaked in surprise at the unexpected movement.

At the stop sign, no traffic either way, he let the bike tip to one side and caught it with his foot, taking his hands off the handlebars.

Andrew,” Spike said, “you're either gonna have to stop talkin' or loosen your arms. I'm not puttin' up with both.”

But you sound like you like Star—”

Not puttin' up with both!” Spike repeated. He grabbed Andrew's hand, interlaced at the fingers, and pried them free before tossing them to the sides.

This would have been a good time for Andrew to do any number of things. Keep quiet, or if he absolutely must speak, then at least apologize for being so annoying. Hitch-hike home, find a new hobby, take a vow of silence. Anything, really. What he really needed not to do was just point out the obvious.

You seem tense.”

Son of a bitch,” Spike spat. “I swear, just listen and—”

Ooh, hey, there's a Chili's!” Don't snap his neck. Don't snap his neck. “I haven't eaten all day. We could share an onion blossom?” Please snap his neck. Please snap his neck. “Pleeeeease?”

The last time he had been this annoyed with someone, he had killed them. He hadn't just killed them, though, that's how he finished the encounter. He had led up with things that would have made Angelus proud in his prime, things he had learned from Angelus in his prime. And it had taken him several hours to clean up afterward.

But that was just because Dru had helped.

The last time he had been this annoyed with someone, he had not joined them in what was probably the only 24-hour Chili's in the country, sipping a Guinness and gnawing on a mostly spent hot wing. Andrew had a burger the size of his head in front of him, opening his mouth larger than seemed possible to take a bite out of it. Between them, the blossom they were sharing shined gold in the overhead lamplight.

Onion blossoms are the great equalizer,” Andrew pointed out through a mouthful of burger. “Just minutes ago you were getting all upset over nothing, and now the blossomy goodness of fried onions—” He reached over the assortment to Spike's side, snagging one near the top. “—is bringing us—” Spike slapped his hand away. “Ow!”

That's my side,” Spike said hotly. “Your side, my side. Stay on your side.”

But I already ate all the ones at the top!” Andrew whined. “They're the best!”

Which is why it's mine,” Spike said. “You ate all your good ones. Deal with it.”


Right, listen, I'm this close to takin' you out back and puttin' the stake to you, all right?” Spike threatened, jabbing the picked bone in Andrew's direction. Andrew grinned nervously and opened his mouth. “Shut up. I mean it.”

Okay,” Andrew conceded, watching the bone carefully until it was lowered. He took a smaller, more careful bite of his burger, his eyes still on Spike. After another few seconds, he plucked one of his own blossom wedges from the assortment and bit into it.

Spike tried very hard to ignore the grimace on his face.

The top's still better,” Andrew muttered quietly. The bone hit the plate with a loud clunk, the table shuddered when Spike leaned into it, and the plate very likely scratched the hardwood when he spun the onion blossom halfway around. Andrew's eyes lit up when the formerly unattainable top wedges pointed out toward him, dropping the middle piece he had been halfheartedly nibbling and reaching for one.

Blood hell,” Spike groaned, grabbing another wing and tearing into it. “I swear, how Buffy puts up with you is beyond me.”

Is there a thing with you two?” Andrew asked. “You know, a thingy thing?”

Careful,” Spike warned through bared teeth reddened by Buffalo sauce.

Sorry, it's just, you know, there's that whole thing from last year. And now there's the thing from this year. I thought there might still be a thing.”

There's a thing, all right,” Spike finally allowed. “I'm just not sure what it is.” Andrew looked confused, but it wasn't a terribly new look on him. “Look, you'll understand when you're older.”

I'm twenty-two.”

Really?” Spike was incredulous. “You—are you sure?”

Of course I'm sure!” Andrew said. He pointed to the pink drink in front of him, laden with a pair of cherries and an umbrella. “I'm drinking alcohol, aren't I?”

Hand on the Bible, I thought that was fruit punch,” Spike said.

I drink,” Andrew said with little conviction. “Maybe not the—” His eyes were distant. “—amber brew typically enjoyed by a sexy action hero, but more the subtler tastes often frowned upon by people like us.”


Men.” Spike snorted. “Laugh all you like. I helped Xander fix one of the windows the other day, and when I got a splinter, I didn't freak out at all. I calmly walked into the bathroom, got the tweezers, plucked it out, and then blew my nose.”

You blew your nose?” Spike asked.

Yeah, I think I'd gotten something in my eye, so my sinuses started acting up.” Andrew shrugged. “That's construction for you.” He nodded toward Spike's drink. “That's, like, your third one. Are you gonna be okay to drive?”

Please,” Spike said, already accustomed to the fact that the Andrew in the middle was the one he needed to address, “this is barely more than ginger ale to a vampire. We don't get drunk.”


Spike fought down a burp.


They finished the meal in relative silence, other than faint squabbles over the remaining onion blossom wedges, and twenty minutes and three beers later, Spike paid the bill and led the way to the front door.

You're kinda swaying, Spike,” Andrew said. “Are you sure—”

No problem,” Spike said, grinning. This kid wasn't so bad. In fact, he was bloody hilarious. “Just gotta remember the rules of the road. Red means stop. Green means go. Yellow means go faster.” He burped, and then he laughed, swinging one leg over the bike. “Come on. You were talking about Olric del Drama earlier. What happened to him?”

Andrew carefully perched on the back of the bike, slipping on the football helmet once more.

He, uh, turned to—are you sure you can drive?” Spike just laughed, ignoring the five roads circling the one he actually needed to drive on and starting the bike.

Can a chaos demon slip a guy's girly the tongue?” he asked. Andrew seemed at a loss for words.

Spike turned around and gave him a wild grin.

Now hold on tight to me, Andy-boy. Let's eat up that highway.”


There ya go, gabrielleabelle
. I'm sticking with my apparent streak of silliness.

Just holding out until Spiral, heavy in its... heaviness.

Hope this worked as a late birthday present.

Really, really hope you liked it.

All the best.

I exercise extreme self control. I never drink anything stronger than gin before breakfast.
-W.C. Fields


( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 8th, 2009 01:11 am (UTC)
Oh! Perfect! You got their banter perfectly! So funny. Loved Spike being surprised at Andrew being 22. And the fruit punch. *g*

Thank you for the belated bday fic. Much appreciated. :)
Sep. 8th, 2009 01:16 am (UTC)
Happy to do it.

I'll have one on time next year.
Sep. 8th, 2009 01:54 am (UTC)
I cannot stand either of these characters, but this was marvelous.

Would have been improved if Spike had murdered Andrew, though. I'm pretty sure no one would have minded.
Sep. 8th, 2009 01:56 am (UTC)
Some people might have minded.

I actually liked Andrew, if only because the Trio was hilariously out of place in an otherwise dark Season Six (although that might have been intentionally ironic) and because of his offbeat observations of the rest of the cast.

Mistaking a vulcan for a volcanologist was one of the funniest things in Season 7, particularly when they showed Faith fighting a Spock look-alike.
Sep. 8th, 2009 01:56 am (UTC)
Oh, and the title reminded me of Homage to Sextus Propertius:

Great Zeus, save the woman,

or she will sit before your feet in a veil,
and tell out the long list of her troubles.
Sep. 8th, 2009 01:57 am (UTC)

No comment.
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:01 am (UTC)
Love it!

Spike wondered if anyone would blame him for swerving in front of what looked to be a big rig.

Yes, Spike! Oh, I love you.

This was just perfect. Hee! Spike so got drunk so that if he crashed he'd have a good excuse. Haha he sooooooooo did. :D
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:06 am (UTC)
That's not an altogether inaccurate supposition.
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:47 am (UTC)
Bahahaha! Loved your Andrew. Annoying and yet adorable, and trying SO hard to be a badass supervillain. Those darn sinuses. *snort*

They're such an unlikely pairing, and yet you played it to perfection.

Green means go. Yellow means go faster. Red means 'proceed with caution'. :)
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:54 am (UTC)
Thanks. I tried to remember the "annoying virgin" quip throughout this piece.
Sep. 8th, 2009 04:48 pm (UTC)
“Lemme get this straight. I'm Leia in this scenario?” Snort!
Okay, now I have an image of Spike in Leia's metal bikini - I am so going to hell.

Very cute, hon.
Sep. 8th, 2009 05:05 pm (UTC)
Thanks. Although now I've got that image, too.

Oedipus had a way of dealing with unpleasant things like this.
Sep. 8th, 2009 10:40 pm (UTC)
Like the top pieces of an onion blossom, done to perfection!
Sep. 8th, 2009 11:20 pm (UTC)
Heh, thanks.

I need to slow down the oneshots. I'm gonna run out of ideas.
Sep. 17th, 2009 03:21 pm (UTC)
Oh. My. God.

It was one of the most hilarious fics I read in ages.

When I saw "A/S" in the header, my first thoughе was that you've started writing Spangel porn. Does it make me a perv? :)

Anyway, the idea of Spike-as-Leia is absolutely priceless, and this bit

“I'm twenty-two.”
“Really?” Spike was incredulous. “You—are you sure?”
“Of course I'm sure!” Andrew said. He pointed to the pink drink in front of him, laden with a pair of cherries and an umbrella. “I'm drinking alcohol, aren't I?”

is quintessential Andrew logic.

Drunk!Spike is a hoot. I wonder how many drinks he had before he started to like Andrew. :)
Sep. 17th, 2009 04:43 pm (UTC)
Fairly certain I'll never write slash porn. I just don't think I've got it in me.

Glad you enjoyed the story, though. It was pretty fun to write.
Jan. 12th, 2010 05:35 pm (UTC)
This was charming. Andrew's non-stop chatter and vice like grip would drive Spike 'round the bend, so it's no wonder he needed six beers to make it back to Sunnydale without killing the little git.

This story was recced at buffyversetop5 and I'm delighted to have been pushed in its direction.
Jan. 12th, 2010 05:41 pm (UTC)
Hey, that's pretty cool.

I'm glad you enjoyed it.
Jan. 12th, 2010 08:13 pm (UTC)
Here from buffyversetop5
“We've all had skeletons in our closets.”
“Sometimes literally,” Spike offered offhandedly.

Ha! Spike must reaaaally love Buffy :)
Jan. 12th, 2010 08:21 pm (UTC)
Re: Here from buffyversetop5
Haha, I love being recced.
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )