GHS 8: Home Again.

Giles hopped up as he saw the gray Lexus approach, smiling at the men in it. Oz stepped out and looked at him. "I didn't think it was appropriate to be in there when Xander wasn't," he explained gently. Xander got out and simply hugged him, relaxing into his arms. "I missed you, my boy," he said gently as he rubbed down the soft flesh. "I missed you so much," he whispered in his lover's ear.

Oz hugged Xander from behind, wrapping his arms around Giles as far as he could. "We missed you too, Rupert." He smiled at his astonished look. "What?"

"No one's called me by my given name in years."

"I still may not," Xander said as he pulled back to grin at him. "I still don't like your first name that much."

"I'd think you'd like it a bit more than my middle name," he said with a teasing grin.

"True, but calling you 'Giles' is comfy to me. Can I keep doing it?"

"Of course you may, love," Giles said. He looked in the back seat. "We have pets?"

"Yup." Oz looked at him. "You're allergic, aren't you?"

"Yes, unfortunately, I am." He shrugged. "I'll deal with it. I'm sure they're all loves."

"Little ones," Xander said, getting free to get the carrier. "Oz, door?" he suggested, lugging the big, plastic case toward the door. He breathed in as he crossed the threshold, looking around. "It's all the same."

"Yup. We had the cleaning lady in to clean up after the fight," Oz told him, helping him put the carrier down in front of the sliding doors and wall of windows. They released the carrier's door, watching as first one kitten came out and meowed at them. She wandered right over to the window and looked out, calling to the birds that were out beside the pool.

Xander sat on the floor, smiling as he watched Rocky come out. "It's okay, Rocky, you can explore. This is home." The puppy looked at him and barked, tipping her head off to the side. "Yes, home." He reached over to scratch her ears. "See, comfy stuff." She shook his hand off and ran around the room sniffing everything. After she was done, she howled. That was apparently the sign because the other kittens all came out to help their sister watch the birds.

Giles looked at the animals, silently counting, but Oz laid a hand on his arm. "We're the guardian of the kittens, we hand raised them. We're only keeping two."

Xander nodded. "Right, two." He accepted the furry bundle of kitten into his lap, looking down at her. "Hi, Fluffy."

"Fluffy?" Giles asked with a smile. He squatted down to look at her. "My, you're pink."

"Technically, she's peach," Xander said, handing her over. "This is your third daddy, Giles." He hopped up, heading after Rocky and one of the kittens before they could make it up the stairs. "I closed the door at the top, I don't know what's out up there." He set them both in his lap as he sat back down. "So, guys, do you like the house?"

Oz snorted, sitting beside him. "I'm sure they do. Hey, Percival," he said, scratching the kitten's ear. "I think we're keeping this one and Fluffy, but we'll have to see who they pick as owners. Their mother picked Xander as their guardian so we have to let them pick."

Giles just nodded wisely and let it drop. He could get the story later. He leaned over, kissing Xander's cheek, but he hit his lips at the last second, quickly becoming absorbed in the kiss. Until sharp claws dug into his stomach. "Ow," he complained, looking down. "I am allowed to kiss him, he's mine also." He handed her off, watching as Xander kissed the top of her head. "Are you feeling better?" he asked, rubbing through the dark hair. "I was most worried when you ran away, and it got even worse when I found out that you had become someone else for a while."

"I'm fine," Xander said, leaning into his hand. "I missed the old me too, but Oz taught me that I wasn't bad." He looked at his lover with a big smile. "I love you both," he said, resting his head on Giles' shoulder. He looked down at the insistent cold nose that was trying to find it's way into his bellybutton. "Yes, I love you too, Percival."

"What are the other two's names?" Giles asked, watching as one of them tried to fight a potted plant and the other kept staring out the window.

"Well, George is staring at the birds," Oz said.

"George after the old Bugs Bunny cartoons with the Abominable Snowman who held Daffy Duck and said he'd call him love him and squeeze him and call him George."

Oz snorted. "Or after the stupid one in the other cartoon series, we're still in disagreement about why."

"And the other?" Giles asked with a smile. "The one trying to fight the plant?"

"Don. Actually, Don Quiote," Oz amended. "He thinks everything's a dragon or a windmill, we're not sure which."

"They just all have to be fought," Xander added with a smile. "George and Percival like Oz more and Fluffy and Don like me best." He put Fluffy and Percival down so he could stand up and take off his shirt. "Giles, can I have a backrub?" he asked shyly. "I've missed your hands." He looked at Oz. "That's okay, right?"

"I've had your body for the last two months, I can share," Oz said with a nod. "I'm going to check the fridge and cupboards for food so we know what we'll need." He stood up, heading into the kitchen to do his chores, followed by most of the animals.

Xander led Giles back to their bedroom, smiling at the made bed. "Gee, the cleaning lady was nice," he said as he finished stripping and lay down. He heard snickering and felt a soft weight so turned to find Don sitting on his ass, looking down at him. "Yes?" he asked with a smile. "Did you need something?" The cat meowed at him. "Uh-huh. Why don't you help Oz get food-type stuff?" Don meowed again and lay down, after a few seconds of careful kneading.

Giles smiled then burst out laughing. "My, he's a demanding little one, isn't he?" He sat down beside his lover, stroking over the kitten's head. "I need to get to the human, may I move you? I assure you the bed is most soft and comfortable." He carefully picked up the kitten by the scruff and put him down on the quilt, surrounding him with the throw pillows so he could take his pick. He got up and headed for the bathroom, coming back out with the oil they both preferred for massages, stopping to stare in amazement at the cat, who was now on top of Xander's butt on a pillow. He started to laugh again, leaning against the closet door. "Xander, is there something you'd like to tell me?"

"He's insistent," Xander groaned. "Please?"

"Of course, love, but it may not be as good as usual considering your helper." He looked up as Oz walked in. "I do believe he wanted one also," he said, pointing.

Oz grabbed the instant camera off the dresser and snapped a picture. He laid the picture and the camera aside before coming over to pick up the pillow and kitten, carrying them out of the bedroom. "Have fun. Oh, and the neighbor's over."

"Tell him I said hi," Xander said, waving. He waited until the door was closed to spread his legs. "Please?"

"Of course, Xander. How could I resist such an invitation."

"Um, not that sort of invitation. Oz and I still haven't broken the last sexual barrier yet." Xander turned his head to look at his lover. "I'm waiting on the final one, intercourse. I've gotten past all of it but that."

"Then I'll wait until you're ready. I'm sure you and I can find many things to do for each other besides that one act."

"Cool. I wasn't sure if you'd understand or not."

"Xander, if you're uncomfortable with the act, that's all I need to know," Giles said, kissing the soft back between the tense shoulderblades. "The fact that you're not wanting it is enough to make me not want it with you."

"Thanks," Xander sighed, relaxing again. "Backrub?"

"Of course." Giles poured some oil into his hands, smoothing over the pale skin. "How was Vermont?"

"Cold," Oz said from the door. "Percival liked him. He said he'd ask his wife."

"I thought Percival liked Methos."

"He does, but he jumped up into our neighbor's lap and kissed him. He never did that for Methos. And Percival likes to ignore Methos too. We'll see what happens." Oz started to turn away but Xander held out a hand so he walked over to lay beside him. "Did you need something?" he asked with a kiss.

"Yeah, you," Xander said, shifting so he could lay partially on top of Oz's body. "Comfy." He shifted off as someone knocked on the sliding doors. "Come in," he yelled, making Oz wince. "Sorry. Didn't want to get up." He smiled at their neighbor as he walked over to stand in the doorway. "I'm being spoiled."

The man smiled and shook his head. "I'd say so. She said she really wanted a female cat." He looked hopeful.

"The only female one we have is the peach one that just tried to sneak behind you," Oz said, pointing down the hall. "She's not real stealthy yet."

The other man turned, bending down to pick her up. "What's your name, sweetie?"

"Fluffy. Because she likes to pretend to be a big puffball in the laundry basket." Xander lifted his head. "If she likes you then you can have her. She was the last one so she's really special, just take care of her."

"Oh, I will. My youngest won't do what she did with our last dog and shave her bald. This'll be the little woman's cat." He looked down at her. "I'm going to introduce you to Valerie, let's see what she thinks. She's going to love your coloring though." He waved and walked out. "Oops, I let one of the other guys out."

Oz slid out from under Xander's head and shoulders, walking out to the sliding doors to watch Percival sniff around the pool. "Go ahead, dive in. We'll save you." The cat looked at him then batted the water, losing balance and falling in. He came back up sputtering and his back hair standing up, but swam over to the side and crawled out. "See?" He let him back in, watching as one of the other kittens and Rocky helped her lick herself clean. "That's the pool. When you're bigger, you can go back into it." He looked up at the neighbor. "It works."

He nodded. "Seems to. Looks like you did a good job. Where's the mother?"

"She died having Fluffy. The vet had to cut her out because there was something blocking the way." He wiggled his fingers at the cat. "Don't worry, his wife is nice and if she doesn't like you, you can come back. Don'll even give you purrs and kneads later."

The neighbor smiled and walked away. "Let's go see what the little woman thinks."

Oz shut the door, heading back to where Xander was purring under Giles' skillful fingers. "Do either of you find how he talks about Valerie insulting?"

"Just a little," Xander said, holding up his finger and thumb, wide apart. He looked up and gave Oz a sleepy smile. "I missed this from him. Your fingers are great but his find all the little spots that just wipe me out."

"So I see. Nap if you need it, the flight was a long one and you were taking care of the kittens most of it." He shared a kiss with each of his men, getting up to let the person knocking on the door in. "Yes, officer?" Fluffy was handed over. "What did she do? And are you a neighbor?"

"No, we got a call from the neighbor on the other side of yours about the smell coming from his house." He grimaced as Giles walked out. "Which one of you is the owner?"

"He's taking a nap," Giles said, "but we've been gone for the last few weeks. Xander's been gone for months actually."

"Oh, okay then. We just wanted to ask you some questions about how long it's been since you've seen his wife and kids."

Oz blanched. "He did?" The officer nodded. "Eww. I do know that he always called Valerie his 'little woman'. He was always real degrading about her when he spoke of her."

"He beat her to death," the officer said quietly, making a note in his notebook. "One of the daughter's too. The other we found locked in her room rocking back and forth in a corner." He looked down at the kitten rubbing against him. "Which one are you?"

"Oh, that's Percival. He's our knight in shining armor. He just decided to investigate the pool." Oz picked him up, wrapping the kitten in the bottom of his t-shirt. "Is there anything we can help with?"

"No, I think the girl'll be fine in a few weeks, after getting some care." He closed his notebook. "Have you had any other problems with the girls?"

"Just that they liked to help Xander sunbathe," Giles said dryly. "He liked to do it nude and the girls would either watch or would come help. They occasionally came over to swim in the pool, but their father kept saying he 'fixed' that problem." He looked out the back window. "Which girl was it?"

"The younger one. She's probably going to be fine. The psychiatrist that came to help us said she should be fine with some medication and a lot of sleep."

Giles shook his head. "That's not how you deal with trauma of that scale. You let them talk about it." He looked at Oz, who nodded. "I think we know someone who might be better able to take care of her. May we refer them?"

"I'd say so. The state's going to be getting custody for a while." He looked up as Xander walked out. "Cute kittens."

"Thanks. Their mom picked us to raise them." He scratched Percival's ears. "Pool?"

"Fell in the shallow end." Oz handed him over. "Here."

"Thanks." Xander looked at the officer. "There's a really good shrink in town, Doctor Roberts. Try him. He's not real big on the drug approach but he'll get her talking in no time."

The officer nodded. "I'll suggest that to my wife, she works on the psych floor at General." He waved. "I'll leave you alone to get resettled." He smiled as Percival reached out for him. "Yes, you're very cute. Are they up for adoption?"

"Oh yeah. This is one of four. Three guys and one girl, which you brought back." He looked out as a young girl in a nightgown walked over to stand behind the cop. "Hi, Marigold." Percival reached out to her. "Would you like to hold the kitten?"

She smiled and reached, snatching the cat from Xander's hands. "Kitty," she sighed, rubbing her face against his wet side. "Mine?" She looked up at the officer and hissed at another man that was walking towards her.

"Um, maybe you shouldn't give her that," the other man said. "I don't think she's going to be able to handle it."

"If you didn't drug her so much that she wouldn't be able to work through it she might," Giles suggested dryly. "Marigold, would you like to stay with us while we call Doctor Roberts out?" She nodded. "Okay, go grab a towel and dry him off please." He looked at the officer then inside. "If you'd care to wait, we wouldn't mind." He looked at the man standing outside the door. "If you touch that girl again, I will tell everyone about what I caught you doing six months ago." He shut the door in the shrink's face, leaning against it. The officer just looked at him. "I'm sure you know of that place where cars park and prostitutes are picked up?" The officer nodded, frowning. "She was most young, maybe sixteen if you're being generous and looking only at the makeup she was wearing."

The officer nodded. "Okay. That's a good enough reason. If you had proof, I'd ask for it."

"Go do a raid," Oz suggested, walking out of the hall with a robe. "Here, Marigold, put this on. You've got to be cold." She slipped it on, rubbing her face against the side. "Welcome. Dry him carefully. He's a little spoiled because we hand raised them." He walked into the kitchen. "Want some coffee? Xander just called him. He lives down the street."

"Yes, if you wouldn't mind." Oz shook his head, starting a pot. "Thanks." He turned to watch the young girl carefully petting the cat. "He's good therapy."

"Animals usually are," Giles said, watching her. He smiled at Xander as he walked back out. "Did he say when?" Someone knocked on the door so he opened it. "Yes?"

The other officer nodded that one inside. "They saw him parked with a kid about her age. I thought it best if we called someone else. They suggested Roberts."

"And he's coming?" the second officer asked in shock.

"He's a good guy," Xander defended. "He really cares about his patients. Doesn't drug them into a stupor." He sat down beside Marigold, smiling as she rested against his side. "I think you'll like him, he works with a lot of teens." She looked up at him through her hair. "Yeah, I think you'll be okay." He nodded toward the back door. "See?" He waved, watching the man as he walked inside.

"Ah, Doctor Roberts," Giles said, shaking his hand. He reached down, lunging for the kitten before he could get out. "Don! Get back in here. No, you don't need to take a bath." He walked out, heading after the next kitten to fall into the pool.

Oz snorted then nodded at the couch. "She and Percival seem to have gotten close." He handed over cups of coffee, including one for the doctor. "She's talking but not much. She grabbed Percival from Xander to hold and cuddle."

Xander looked up, giving him a small smile. "Hi." He tapped Marigold on the head. "Marigold, this is Doctor Roberts. Can you say hi?" She looked up and grunted. "Now, none of that. Be nice to him. He saved one of my friend's life at one time."

"I was sorry to hear Jesse had died." He sat down in front of the couch, reaching out a hand, which she batted away. "All right. Would you like to tell me about Percival?"

"He's been hurt," she said, cuddling him. "Really badly hurt."

"Oh, I see." He sipped his coffee, moaning in delight. "I've got to get the name of this blend."

"It's the Harris blend down at the little coffee shop in town," Oz called. "Sorry it's so stale."

"Tastes great," he called back. He smiled at Marigold, holding out a hand again. "Maybe we should get you into something a little warmer."

"His," she said, taking off the robe to hand it back to Xander.

"It's okay. We'll get it sometime soon." He gave her a smile, helping her back into it so she didn't have to let go of the kitten. "We don't mind if Percival goes with her. He seems to have chosen to help her."

"He's an interesting cat," Doctor Roberts said, touching the pink/grey/tan fur. "A very interesting mix." He looked down as another cat invaded his lap. "Let me guess, you're a tunnel cat?"

"Oh, yeah." Xander accepted Don back. "He likes to hide in indents and seats."

"And under blankets," Oz said, looking at the scratches on his arm. He walked over, taking Don. "Percival, be good for her. She's going to need you to hold her a lot." The kitten meowed silently at him. "Good boy." He waved. "Marigold, you can have Percival if you're good and Doctor Roberts says it's all right."

"I think it'd be fine." He stood up, holding out a hand. "Would you like to show Percival his new home in your room?" She nodded, standing up. "Come, let's go take you to my house and we'll get you settled into a room of your own." They walked out the back door, followed by the officers. "Thanks, boys."

"Welcome," Oz and Xander called together.

Giles smiled at his men. "That worked out rather well."

"He treated Jesse one summer. He was having a lot of strange thoughts and feelings and he was really mixed up so I called the local teen hotline because I thought he was going to take a header off his roof one night. They referred me to him and he saw Jesse the next day. It took him about a month of talking, and no drugs, and Jesse was back to his normal self." He pulled Oz down into his lap, letting Don sleep on him instead. "He was a really nice guy, he believed everything I said and everything."

"He deals with teens almost exclusively," Oz said quietly. "He runs a group home for troubled teens out of his own house. He's really decent to them."

Giles sat down beside them, reaching over to pet the cats. "Percival will be greatly loved over there then. He'll probably find a lot of children to help after her."

"I think she's just in shock," Xander said. "She looked like she could heal."

"She probably can," Giles told him. "I'm sure she'll be fine."

"Good." Oz kissed Xander gently, stroking the kitten purring in his lap. "I thought you were napping."

"I was, then I heard what happened. Then Don bit me so I got up and came out." He looked down at the kitten. "He wanted to help her too."

"He's a chivalrous cat," Giles said with a smile. "I'd say you named them both excellently."

Xander laid his head on Giles' shoulder. "Can we go back to what we were doing?"

"In a while," Oz said with a yawn. "I need a nap." Don poked him with a nail. "Yes, we need a nap and you're not going to hog the covers." He got up, heading into the bedroom. "Coming, Xander? Giles?"

They got up and followed him into the bedroom, shutting the door with the kittens on the outside.


Xander groaned as Oz licked his nipples, hands clenched firmly in his hair, mouth open in a wordless shout as his lover stroked in and out of his body. Until his wiggling feet were pounced on from outside the blanket. "What the...!"

Oz stopped and looked over his shoulder, groaning. "Don!"

Giles started to laugh, reaching up to bat at the cat, who growled and tried to bite him. "My, you're a hard one to deal with, aren't you?"

"I thought you locked the door," Oz said, looking over at Giles. "Didn't you?"

"I did." He looked over at the door, which was still closed and locked. "I'm not sure how he got in here."

"He likes sleeping in the closet," Xander reminded Oz, pushing the top half of himself up. "Get off me." The cat meowed at him. "Now! I'm having a moment with your father, you don't need to attack us."

Oz groaned, pulling out to pick up the cat and carry him to the door. He unlocked the door, sticking his foot in the opening so none of the other ones could sneak in while he threw Don out. "Later," he said, closing the door. He turned to find Fluffy sitting on top of Xander's back while he hid under the blankets. "How did you get in here?" He walked over, grabbing her to throw out too. When he opened the door this time, all the cats rushed him, jumping over his foot in perfect formation. Even Rocky wandered past him, going to take his usual place on the bed against Xander's stomach. "Oh, no," Oz swore, walking over to grab the three kittens and the puppy, carrying them all back to the door and letting them back out. "Stay for a while longer. We'll let you in later." He shut the door, turning to find Xander looking out at him from under the quilt. "They'll listen."

"Oz, this is why we couldn't do more than cuddle in Vermont." Xander lifted the quilt so Oz could get under it with him. "Remember all the times we got pounced because we are apparently scary blanket monsters?"

Giles snickered. "I would have thought that you might have been warned about that. My former cat used to do that all the time. Even when I just moved in my sleep sometimes."

"Actually our tunneler, Don, likes to sneak in and try to sleep under the blankets with us." Xander kissed each of his men then snuggled down on Oz's chest. "We'll do it right in the morning," he said quietly. "Make a whole ceremony type-thing."

"If you'd like that," Oz told him, rubbing down his back. He looked over at Giles as he felt a hand covering him. "Thought we were going to wait."

"We are. I didn't want to leave you hanging." Xander looked up with a small grin as his hand continued its course of distraction. "Did you want me to make you wait?"

"No," Oz groaned, pushing his hips up against the hand working him. "Not really."

"See, then I'm taking care of you. Just like always." Xander nipped the strong arm wrapped around his shoulders, laying his head on the offered shoulder as his hand slowly worked his lover off. "Gee, no noise?"

Oz shook his head, eyes squeezed tightly shut. "Not going to watch the cat watch us."

Xander and Giles both looked up and groaned as they saw George watching them. "Out." George leaned down to sniff his butt then looked at them again. "Out," Xander repeated. He started to remove his hand from Oz's cock but it was held still by a tightly clamped hand. "If you can live with George, so can I." He closed his eyes, covering his head with the quilt so he didn't have to see the cat either. Oz groaned as something hit the hand working him, shooting off at that moment. "Better?" Xander whispered, licking the shoulder he was laying on.

"Yup, up until that last bat." Oz pulled down the quilt to look at the animals standing on top of Xander's body. "How did you get in?"

Giles smiled, wrapping an arm around Oz's waist. "They're cats, Oz, it's one of the mysteries of the universe." He closed his eyes, waiting to fall asleep.

Xander smiled at Giles then shared a kiss with Oz, making them comfortable. He was just about asleep when he felt a cold nose trying to burrow into the small space between his shoulder and Oz's chest. "Don, not even gonna do that tonight," he muttered, pushing the nose away. For which he got bit. Xander opened an eye, glaring at the kitten. "Do it again and you're getting thrown off the bed."

Oz patted Xander's back, lifting the quilt so the kitten could get down on his stomach, his usual place. He winced as the sharp little claws kneaded his flesh, bucking up to make Don stop, but the kitten just moved lower. "No!" Oz shouted, sitting up. A hand reached down, removing the kitten from between his legs, dropping it off the side of the bed for him. "Thanks, love."

"Welcome," Giles said, snuggling Oz once he was lying down again. "Sleep. All of you." He looked up at the cat sitting on his side, blinking in confusion at the yellow eyes staring into his. "Yes, George?"

"Meow?" George sniffed him then nudged him with his nose.

"Pets are petted in the mornings," Xander mumbled. "No pets now."

Giles reached up, petting the small kitten. "There we go, George." The cat laid down on top of his side, getting comfortable right there.

Fluffy looked at the three men, deciding to take the direct approach. She walked up the pillows behind Xander's head, flopping down on top of Oz's head. She licked the hand that came up to pet her, telling it to go back to sleep. She yawned, looking at Don as he snuck back up onto the bed, swishing her tail at him. He growled lightly, batting Xander's hair, which made him shift. He took that opportunity to dash under the covers, settling down on Oz's stomach again.

Rocky just quietly barked at the kittens and settled down on the foot of the bed. After all, it was big enough so a foot would never get near her. She watched the moving lump under the blankets, putting her head down when it was pounced by George, who then went back to his perch on the older guy's side.


Xander looked around the room, a naughty grin on his face. He closed and locked the door, making sure the closet door was closed also just in case Don had decided to sleep in there. He snuck back onto the bed, getting under the covers to lick his way down Oz's chest and stomach. By the time he reached the navel, the body under him was wiggling and a hand was rubbing through his hair. He kissed each of the scratches on the smooth skin, going lower to lick over the hard flesh, ignoring the small bat to his feet, which were wiggling with the song on the radio. He licked over the hard cock, smiling at the groan he got. Then he ever so slowly swallowed it, just steadily moving down as he took more and more in. Oz moaned and grabbed his hair, pulling him back up. "Yes?" he asked with a grin, blinking a big innocent look up at him.

"So naughty," Oz whispered, pulling him up for a kiss. "I love when you wake me up like that. Where's the little people?" He looked over the top of Xander's back, frowning. "Off the bed, Don."

The cat walked up, pushing his nose into Oz's face, nudging noses with him. He sat on top of Xander's head, looking down at them. "Meow?"

"No," Giles groaned, picking up the cat to hold. "I'll keep him, you two have fun."

"But I wanted it to be all three of us," Xander pouted. "That's one of the reasons I waited." He looked up and Oz nodded. "Go throw him in the closet, he'll sleep on the laundry." Giles got up, doing just that, and they all ignored the pitiful noises he was making. "Later," Xander called. "Take a cat nap." The noises stopped and Xander smiled at Giles as he slid back in beside them. "I wanted it to be all of us," he said, reaching over to rub across the taut chest. "Gee, you became really hard recently."

"It's all the practice," Oz told them. "It tends to do that to you." He rolled, trapping Xander between them as he shared a kiss with Giles. "Good morning. We missed this part."

"Me too," Giles said, moving his body closer to press Xander between them while he kissed his other lover, one hand going down to stretch their lover for what they all wanted later. "We should chain him to the bed today. Make sure that he can't get up."

"Really?" Xander asked, nipping Giles' chest. "I could go for that but only if I'm fed and treated well as a captive."

"Of course," Oz told him, reaching down to tease Xander's stomach. "You're always our favorite captive and we always treat you well, don't we?"

"Yup. I just wanted to make sure I could have ice cream this time." He groaned as the doorbell was rung. "Damn people," he muttered as he got up to answer it, remembering his robe at the last moment. "Methos?" He asked in shock as he saw who it was. "What's going on?"

"Ray's in Chicago to testify and you did say to drop by anytime," he reminded as he walked in. He looked at the animals that ran to meet him. "Where's Don and Percival? Surely you haven't gotten rid of them yet."

"No, but Xander's going to spank Don," Oz said as he walked out carrying one of the younger man's shirts. "He was using it as a play toy."

Xander held up his favorite shirt, frowning at the kitten. "Just because you couldn't help us have sex doesn't mean you have to be mean to my clothes. You usually like to sleep on this one." He balled it up and threw it in a corner. "I guess they can make a bed with it. I'll get a new one once I go shopping." Oz gave him a look then the shirt one. "What?"

"I bought you that shirt."

Xander leaned closer, giving him a kiss. "Then we'll go and I'll let you buy me a new one. Okay?" He scratched Don's ears. "If I could fix it, I would, Oz. It had a good life."

"I'll buy you another," Oz agreed. "We'll recycle it to them." He looked at his teacher. "Connor driving you nuts?"

"No, he's asleep in the car. It was the other McCleod." He bent down to wave at Fluffy. "Hello, pink one. How are we this morning?" She yawned and batted his hand away from her ears. "Ah, yes, we always did agree on mornings."

Oz snorted. "Go make coffee, I was letting Xander spoil me with attention."

"Good," Methos purred, rubbing a hand down the folds of Xander's robe. "He needs it."

"Mine," Oz reminded him, handing the cat over and taking back control of Xander, leading him back to the bedroom. He had to stop to free the bed of the remaining kitten and the puppy, but after they were alone the door was locked, they headed back to the bed, Oz picking Xander up to toss him onto it. "There, better," he said, following, possessing the younger man's mouth.

"Much better," Giles purred, rolling over to cuddle them, holding Xander still so Oz could prepare him, remembering quite well that Xander liked to be tied to the bed sometimes. He smiled as Oz slid into their lover, making him moan and arch up. "There, love, is that better?"

Xander nodded, pushing his hips up to meet Oz's strokes. "Want more but it's much better." He shared a kiss with Giles, pulling away from Oz to land on top of his lover's chest. He whimpered as he was filled again, holding onto Giles tightly as Oz rode him hard. "Yes, please? More?" He pushed back against the hands laying on his hips, smiling at the light spank. "Yes, Oz, more!" He got to his hands and knees, pushing back hard, the end of his cock rubbing against Giles' now. Both men groaned.

Giles pushed himself up, grabbing Xander's hips to hold him still while he rubbed against him, aiding Oz in giving him a hard, fulfilling ride. He flinched as the small furry lump hit his chest, simply picking her up to drop her on the floor, tossing a pillow down after here. "There," he said, giving Xander a smile, "all better again." He arched up, giving both of them more friction as Oz slammed in particularly hard. Xander screamed, getting off, going limp in his arms. "There, there, love, all better again," he whispered, licking over the sweaty neck. "Isn't it?"

Xander looked up and grinned, nodding. "Much better." He wiggled his still filled butt at Oz. "Gonna do more?"

"In a minute," Oz said, resting against his back. "I need to calm down or this'll end sooner." He looked down at Giles. "I have to build back up my stamina, I can only go once now."

Giles chuckled, giving him a brilliant smile. "I'm sure we'll fix that for you soon enough." He rubbed down Xander's shoulders, kissing his temple since it was closest. "Now, love, what would you like?"

"More?" Xander asked with an impish grin.

"Ooohh, I think you're getting that," Oz said as he pulled out. "But I think it's Giles' turn." He switched places with his student, holding Xander's limp and sated body as they kicked him back into sexual overdrive, their favorite part of the day. "Yeah," he said, watching the seemingly older man stroke in and out slowly. "Tease him, babe."

"Mean," Xander whispered, wiggling his butt. "Need more."

"And more you shall get, when we're ready." Giles looked at Oz, then they both looked at their lover, each nodding. Giles pulled out, going to grab his book off the dresser, coming back to light the candles around the bed. "We'll always give you more," he said as he lit the last one and raised his hands. He pulled a small silver knife from the book, cutting his palm, then Oz's, then Xander's, making him look up in shock. "Always," he reminded, starting the first round of the chant of the spell to link Xander's personal energy to their's.

Methos smiled as he watched Fluffy reappear from behind the couch, then it just got broader as he heard the magic start. He picked her up, sitting down on the couch to slowly pet her vibrating body. "Yes, they'll be around for a long time, my dear pink one. Yes, they'll make sure your father is around forever. Just like they and I will be." He smiled as Connor walked in, nodding his head at the room where the chanting had just went up in pitch. "It's time."

"If we have to, we'll train Xander also."

"I think he should have some anyway," Methos said, patting the couch beside him. "I made coffee, the boys keep a special blend in the house. It's a bit on the flavored side, some chocolate and a hint of irish cream, but it's an exceptional blend."

"No thanks." Connor wiggled his fingers at the kitten. "How are you this morning?"

"This is Fluffy, because she kept pretending to a ball of fuzz in the laundry." He handed her over. "Here, talk to him. I need coffee for this." He stopped, looking at the bedroom in alarm as Xander screamed. "Oh, dear." He started that way but Connor stopped him. "I should go check on him."

"Methos, even if you love that boy, you cannot go check on him. That's not for us." He winced, dropping the kitten to grab his chest. "Or not," he groaned, watching as Methos fell to the floor grabbing his own chest. "God, they included us?"

"No," Methos said, fighting to stand. "They can't do that. It'll drive him insane." He made it to his feet just as the feelings stopped, clutching the wall. He took a few deep breaths until the pain stopped, glaring at Giles as he walked out. "You bound him to our energies too?"

"It was an accident, I had no idea it would spread." He smiled gently, hugging him. "It's done," he whispered. "It worked." He looked down at Connor, giving him a small smile also. "He'll be ours for as long as we live."

Oz walked out with Xander cuddled against him. "Meth, your promise since he said you were included."

Methos nodded, looking at Xander. "If he should outlive you and Giles both, then I will take care of him if I'm here."

"As will I," Connor said as he stood up. He nodded at Xander. "I won't make you sleep with me though. You'll be an independent person."

"Shoot, hate being one of those." Xander kissed each of them on the cheek. "Thanks guys." He headed for Oz, pushing him into the wall to kiss him hard. "I think you were doing something? You promised to tie me to the bed today."

"Yeah, I did," Oz said, giving him a small smile. "Go find your restraints, I'm not sure where they are." Xander walked back down the hall. "Could you feel it?"

"He feels like a pre-immortal," Connor told him. "You're sure it worked and he's not going to turn if he dies?"

"If he dies is another matter," Giles said softly. "The spell didn't say what would happen. It's not meant for this situation." He looked toward the bedroom. "I'd say at worst, he'd temporarily turn into one of us."

"Then we'll start with the sword drills, same as we did you," Oz told Giles, patting his arm. "Thank you." They shared a kiss then Oz headed back to the bedroom to lock Xander to the bed for the day. "Do we have ice cream?"

"A bit," Giles called. "I went out last night when I couldn't sleep and got some." He smiled as he walked around his other teachers. "Xander's requests are always carefully thought out." He headed into the kitchen. "Can I make you gentlemen breakfast?"

"Found the hole," Oz called, walking out with Fluffy. "There's a hole into the bathroom." Methos pointed at the couch. "Gee, guess we'll have to fix it. Has anyone seen Rocky?"

"She was sitting at the sliding door last I knew," Connor said, walking over to let her in. "How did you get out?"

"We left the garage door open," Giles said, walking past with a filled tray. "I'm going to feed your master, Rocky, would you like to help?" He turned his head and sneezed. "I have to remember to buy some allergy pills." He walked into the bedroom, finding Xander chained to the bed by one of his ankles, a slim chain linking a cuff around his ankle to one of the bedposts. "Ah, good morning, pet." He set the tray next to Xander, watching as Rocky crawled up to look at it. "No, get out of the food, dear."

"Rocky," Xander said, scratching her ears. "She's cuddly." He kissed Giles, picking up a berry to eat, dipping it in the powdered sugar first. "Thank you."

"I knew you'd like this," he said with a smile, taking the berry to nibble on, picking up another one to feed it to his lover. "There, this is how it's supposed to be, love."

"I feel like it," Xander said, giving him a smile. "That's why I do this. I love it when you take care of me because it reminds me how much you love me and how much I trust you."

"Oh, we do," Oz assured him from the doorway, walking in and closing the door. "Meth's suitably detained with the animals." He stole a kiss from Xander. "You really feel more loved like this?"

"It's a reminder that I'm loved. I need that sometimes."

"Then we'll set aside times that we just chain you to the bed." Oz laid down on the other side of Rocky, petting her while he looked over his lover's body. "Maybe I should have let you get partially dressed." He looked toward the closet. "I liked the present you bought the other day."

"The harem pants?" Xander nibbled on the berry Giles was holding for him, his tongue coming out to lick all the juices off his lover's hand and wrist, then he shared the taste. "I'm yours to command, guys, if you want me dressed, tell me."

"Would these be literal ones?" Giles asked Oz.

"These would be some that I had altered to be the real type," Oz said as he got up. He pulled out the blue pants, holding them up. "These are a lot like the ones I wore for six years." He brought them over, showing Giles the fold and the thinness of the material before he undid the ankle cuff, handing them over. "Finish your raspberry and put these on."

Xander nodded, licking the juice off his fingers, moaning as Giles took his hand to do it for him. "Oh, yes," he moaned, getting hard again. "Like it when you do that too." He shivered as he was released, getting up to let Oz help him into the pants. "Oh, like these." He hugged his elder lover, tightly squeezing him. "I should get more pairs of these." He lay back down on the bed, seductively draping himself. "Yes?" He accepted another berry as his ankle was reattached to the chain. "Thank you," he sighed, relaxing.

"Hey, you belong to us," Oz whispered, licking over the ankle he held. "Would you like to start yoga lessons, Xander?" His lover gave him a shy smile, nodding. "Then we'll do that. Methos knows it very well, I'll have him teach you and we'll buy you tapes." He lay back down on the bed, resting his head on the bare stomach, tracing the waistband that ran in a square just above where Xander's pubic hair should be. "I like this waistband on you. The way it comes up to cover your hips but the center dips down so low." He looked up as Giles fed him a berry. "Would you like to have this done also?"

Giles shook his head. "I'm not that much of a concubine, he's much more into that end of the spectrum. I truly don't know how I was accepted into the GHSS some days."

"Easy, you're a very sensual lover," Xander said, wrapping his arms around Giles' neck, nuzzling his lover's forehead with his lips. "When you're in the mood, you're very much one of us, the rest of the time you're just a great lover."

"Ah, thank you, love." Giles gave him a short kiss. "Would you like some coffee?" Xander shook his head. "No?"

"No, I'm feeling really warm at the moment." He looked down at Rocky, who was laying on his legs. "Aren't we, girl?" She looked up and sniffled, panting at him. "See, really warm."

"Meth must have turned on the heater," Oz said, getting up to walk out. "You really don't mind being a concubine some days?" he asked from the doorway.

"I don't think about it like that, I think about it as giving myself to you totally so you know I love you and I know you love me and that I can trust you to keep me." Oz nodded, heading out to turn down the heater.

Giles smiled at him. "You never have to doubt our love, Xander. Not an ounce of it. Even when we're fighting. You don't need to go to these lengths to prove it to us or yourself."

"Yes I do," Xander said, giving him a solemn nod and a grin. "Besides, I like being like this sometimes. Not all the time, but sometimes I really just want to sit beside your feet and treat you like my personal god." He rubbed down the bare chest. "See?"

"Yes, I do," Giles said, taking the hand to hold. "I do see. It's most amazing how you are some days. Sometimes you're this independent little man who demands to be recognized, and sometimes you're like a little kid in a candy store. Then sometimes you're like this. It just amazes me."

"I told you I was complicated so you'd never be complacent," Xander told him, winking. He looked down at Rocky, nodding toward the door. "Out please." She got up and jumped off the bed. "We can nap later," he called after her. He looked up as Methos walked into the room. "Hi."

"Hi." He sat down beside Xander. "Are you having an insecure moment?"

"No, I just feel absolutely loved when I'm like this." He looked down at the chain attached to his ankle. "When I give in like this, I just feel like the most loved and cherished person on earth. My men love me and I'm sure of it then. They take wonderful care of me and I get to take good care of them without having to seem pushy." He grinned at Giles, letting the hand stroking the firm chest fall lower. "See?" he asked at the groan. "This is me."

"Yes, I can see." Methos stood up, taking the tray. "Don't want to ruin the bed, do you." He walked out, shutting the door behind himself.

"You do take care of us, love."

"Giles, you're protesting because I want to serve you. Isn't that silly?" He leaned over, taking a long lick down the center of his chest. "There, now be quiet so I can play."

Oz walked in, smiling at his men. "Good." He shut and locked the door. "Fixed the hole." He walked over to shut the bathroom door, just to make sure, then stripped on his way to the bed. "You know, this means you have no say in what we do to you."

Xander nodded. "I like it like that sometimes." He looked up at Giles, his eyes asking for understanding. "I want to be a cherished kitten of yours."

"Then so you shall be," Giles said softly. "Whenever you're ready." He leaned over to kiss Oz. "He's consented to be this way all day?"

"Until we free him for bed. Even if we let him out, he's still going to be our pleasure slave all day." He reached down to play with the thin material outlining Xander's hard cock. "I like this on you. We're getting you more pairs."

"Whatever you want," Xander moaned, pushing up against his hand.

"Say that again, love," Giles whispered, nipping his neck.

"Whatever you want," Xander whispered, going limp under their hands. "I'm so yours." He saw the look Oz and Giles shared so opened his legs, letting them have total access to his body. "Yes?"

"Very nice," Oz told him. "Never blindly offer," he reminded. "Otherwise you have no idea what you're getting into." He slid a hand between the folds of the material, undoing the single snap holding the crotch together. "You have no idea what I want to do to you for running away."

"I thought we settled this," Xander pouted.

"We did," Oz said, "but I still need to remind you to talk to us."

"You overreacted, you had me locked in a room."

"Point," Oz conceded. "I should still teach you to talk to us. It seems to have not worked the last time, when you went shopping." Xander's eyes opened. "I see you remember." Oz pulled his belt out of his pants, tossing it on the floor, then stood up to take them off, showing how well built he was under the baggy material. "Apparently you don't remember it well enough though. I guess we'll just have to do it again, slower this time." He grabbed the lube, squirting some out onto his fingers to slick down his cock. "Giles, would you please hold his hands?" He knelt on the bed between the spread legs, sliding his cock between the folds of the fabric and into the prepared hole. He moved slowly, inching in and out as teasingly as he could. "What was the lesson?" he whispered, leaning down for a kiss.

"Talk to you," Xander groaned, pushing his hips up, not able to get all the way up because Oz had locked one of his legs around the knee. "Oz," he whimpered, begging. "Please? I'll talk to you, I promise."

"Yes, you will," Oz said, not speeding up. "But you said anything." He gave him a wicked smile. "Been wanting to do this to you for weeks." He pulled all the way out, reaching down to free the swollen cock, leaning down to lick it. "I demand the right to make you beg," Oz told him, "and since you offered, you're mine today."

"Ours," Giles corrected, reaching down to tease the opening to Xander's body. "I do believe we all need to have that lesson, Oz."

"Oh, you will too," Oz said, looking up at him, taking the head of Xander's cock in to suck for a few seconds before sitting back up and sliding in, just resting inside his lover's body. "I'll get it tonight, you'll get it today sometime, but we'll all get it." He looked down at Xander, giving him a brilliant smile. "You look upset, pet."

"I am," Xander said, wiggling his hips. "Wanted teased."

"Oh, that." Oz leaned down to share a kiss, starting his slow tease again. "That?"

"Yeah, that," Xander said with a grin. "You really don't mind me doing this sometimes? Giles seemed really upset about it."

"Xander, I understand those feelings. They're something I'm willing to support in you because they make you happy." Oz stopped stroking to look down at him. "I can never be upset because you want to please all of us by immersing yourself in your hedonist side. Giles does the same thing when he turns back into the little GHS slut that he is." He looked up. "This is Xander immersing himself in his hedonistic side. It's all about pleasure right now."

"Ah. I had hoped it wasn't just a need to make sure we loved him."

"He's equating love with pleasure for the day," Oz said, taking a slow stroke and stopping again, "but otherwise it's the same thing we do when we want to fully be ourselves. Even Methos does this sometimes. Xander just needs to give in to his pleasure side and let go."

"Yup, when you guys give into me for this, it just proves what I know."

"Oh. Well, that I can understand. I had hoped that you weren't proving all of our love by this single day."

"No, this is sometimes a check but mostly it's just me letting go of all my restraint and willpower to hold it in. I can just lay around eating chocolate and feeling pleasure all day. This is who I was meant to be, Giles, and it's really important that I let go sometimes to be me."

"Then you shall. Just never equate how we treat you on these days as our love. We love you all the time, not just when you're under us." Xander nodded. "As long as you know that."

"I do."

Oz kissed each of them. "We all do that sometimes, Rupert, it's a natural reflection of how much we care. If we didn't care, we wouldn't pay any attention to his needs and wants, and it would show."

"I see." He nodded, sliding down to lay beside them. "I can understand and handle that concept." He looked up at Oz. "He really is meant to be a GHS isn't he?"

"Yeah, he is," Oz said, starting to work his lover again. "Fully one. Meth's right, most of the ones today are more like you, to find someone like Xander is really rare these days. He and Ray are the only two I know about in GHS today." He stopped, considering Xander. "If this was back when I was first alive, he would have sold himself to some rich lord to be taken care of as long as he could. Or he would have become a courtesan."

"Or I would have become a prize in a fight," Xander reminded them. "I still want to know why demons like me."

"They just do." Oz leaned down to nip at his neck. "Yes, you could have been taken by one of them and made into a pet for some major demon that was attached to the Catholic Church for a few years." Giles looked shocked. "There's at least one there at all times. Didn't you know that? It's there to serve as an example for those who work against them daily. It's bound and made to teach the incoming priests who will need to know how to deal with them."

"I had no idea. Did you see this?"

"One year, on the way back from India, it got free. All the priests in the city came after the demon, trapping it in a bar across the street from where I had rented a room. They told us all to ignore it, but I knew one of the priests, he was an immie too. I asked and he told me."

"Oh. Well, it certainly does explain a lot." He looked down at Xander, rubbing a hand down his chest. "You've not even complained."

"Why would I? My pleasure is subject to your will. If Oz wants to teach you while he's resting in me, it's fine by me."

Oz leaned down, kissing him again. "Good pet," he murmured, starting to stroke him harder. "Yes, you like to let go, don't you?" Xander nodded. "Are you going to go back to work?"

"Should," Xander panted. "Don't want to."

"I'd say that there's got to be a better job for him," Giles said with a smile. "Maybe at the jewelry store so he could get a discount on new bracelets." Xander nodded, panting as Oz slid in hard just one time. "My, he's working you well today."

Xander groaned, getting his hands free so he could grab Oz's arms. "Please, no more teasing? I'll talk to you, I promise." Oz shook his head. "Please?"

"Shh," Oz said, leaning down to kiss him gently, starting to work him harder. "Just relax and take it, you're so cute like this." Xander shook his head, throwing it back and closing his eyes as Oz went back to his slow tease. Oz smiled at Giles as he suddenly switched tactics, pounding for a few strokes, just long enough to make Xander adjust to the new rhythm and shout in joy, then he went back to the slow pulling out and pushing in, mid-stroke.

Xander wailed, arching up and coming hard all over his lover's chest. "Oz!"

"Shh," Oz whispered, gently soothing him back down from the peak. "Ready?" he asked after Xander was back to panting.


"Yes, precious, more." He started a normal rhythm, not too hard or fast, but fast enough to not tease. "You are the most responsive person I've ever had under me," he said gently, switching tactics to a harder rhythm. "How many more?"

"Maybe one," Xander moaned, eyes closed again.

"Look at me," Oz said quietly. Instantly, the brown eyes focused on him. "Thank you." He worked him harder, then gentler, going up and down, making it good for him. "What was the lesson?" he asked, pausing.

"I'll talk to you," Xander said, his voice hoarse and harsh sounding. "Please, Oz, no more teasing."

"No more teasing," Oz agreed, leaning down to kiss him even as he slid most of the way out and slammed in that one single time, setting off Xander's last orgasm. He pulled back to see the sated, sleepy smile. "Rupert, would you like to soothe him into sleep?" Oz asked as he pulled out.

"Please," Giles said, grabbing the oil off the bedside table, watching as their lover was rolled over so he could nap, the firm body limp and not very responsive. "I'm not sure you didn't kill him that time."

"Not," Xander groaned. "Please?"

"Of course, love," Giles said, pouring some of the oil out to rub it over the smooth skin. "There we go, just relax."

"Am," Xander whispered, turning his head so he could look back at them. "I'm totally relaxed and happy now."

"And sated," Oz noted, looking over the hole he had inhabited for the last little while. "Sore?"

"Yup, just a little." Xander groaned as his lower back was worked, directly over the surgical scar from when he had blown a disk in his back. "Yeah, there," he whimpered, closing his eyes.

Giles smiled as the snores started a few seconds later, continuing to work until he was satisfied that Xander could not be sore from being on his back for so long. "I missed him," he said, smiling sadly at Oz. "I wish I had come with you."

"Yeah, but we needed to talk." Oz shared a kiss with him. "Rupert, there were many times we both wanted you there, but we needed to talk separately. It was for the best."

"Yes, it was. Next time, leave more than a note, Oz." He reached over, running a stripe of oil down the older immortal's nose. "Please. You almost worried Methos sick that next morning when he realized you hadn't stolen your sword back."

"I had my long knife and I was okay. There was only one immie in town and he was a vet, who really liked Rocky. He even offered to take her before we moved so we could start over again. Her and the kittens."

Giles shook his head. "I'm glad that they came back with you, even if the kittens do continue to curtail our bedroom activities."

"Got that fixed," Oz said, nodding at the bathroom door. "Even if they get through the hole, the door's closed." He looked down as the body under theirs gasped and wiggled. "Let's get off him, he's been having some nightmares." They sat on either side of the still body, Oz catching Xander when he sat up. "Shh, it's okay. You're safe." Xander looked at him, shaking his head. "No?"

"No, I'm not. Not until we know where Buffy is and if she's fixed."

"She's back in LA," Giles told him. "Angel's taken over her training for a bit, without the Council's knowledge."

"She's not coming for you again," Oz assured him. "I won't let her. We're never leaving you alone again. Okay?" Xander nodded. "Another nightmare about her and Willow?"

"Yeah, I smelled her perfume."

Oz picked up the pillow he had been laying on, sniffing it. "Does smell like her." He tossed it off the bed. "We'll wash it, it'll be okay." He soothed his lover back into his boneless state. "Go back to your nap, Xand, we'll be here in the house." He tucked him back in, smiling at the cute picture he made. "I'll leave the door open?"

"Please. Just in case."

"Sure." Oz got up, going to open the door and the bathroom door, letting all the animals back in, except Rocky, who was sleeping in front of the door. "Yell if you need us, I'm going to go talk to Meth and Giles is going to go shopping."

"I believe Methos was going to do that," Connor yelled from the living room. He walked back to the door, smiling. "Feel more at home?" Xander nodded, giving him a sleepy grin. "Good. I need to borrow Oz for a minute." He pulled Oz out into the living room, letting him see the man who had just shown up and collapsed. "He said it's Mac."

"Richie," Oz said, squatting down to touch the back of his head. "Hey, you in there?" The younger immortal looked up, shaking his head. "What happened?"

"He tied me up, started telling me about how evil you were and about how tainted I was. Had this blonde girl with him."

"Is Angel all right?" Giles asked as he walked out.

"Yeah, he ran away when she tried to attack him. Mac stopped her." He got to his knees, looking at Oz. "He started to talk about people who didn't exist. You, me, Connor. Meth too. I got free but he was headed here."

"I called Methos to warn him," Connor said gently. "He's heading home as fast as he can." He looked back down the hall. "He's working with a normal."

"No, he's working with Buffy," Xander called from the bedroom.

"Indeed," Giles said with a grim frown. "The Slayer and he have gotten together." All the immortals looked up as they felt another one coming closer, and heard the car pulling up the drive.

"Not Methos," Oz said, grabbing his sword from behind the couch, heading over to the door. He opened it, sword held behind the portal just in case it was someone that wasn't a threat. He smiled at the man on the outside. "Marcus," he said, holding out a hand. "What brings you?"

"I needed to talk to Connor. Is he here? I heard he was supposed to be here."

Connor walked out, waving him inside. "You got here just as Mac's about to show up for Oz. What's up?"

"He's not the only insane one. One of the normally good ones of us..." He stopped as he saw Richie. "He's here." He pulled his sword. "Defend yourself."

Richie smiled, standing up and pulling his sword. "If you insist," he said with a cruel smile.

Xander walked to the door, whistling. "Guys." He gave Oz a sorrowful look. "I couldn't stay out of it." He looked at the immortals in the house. "Close the door, Oz." He looked at Richie, walking around him. "You're not being normal, but you've been warped by the Buffy monster, I understand that." He looked at the bald, dark skinned man standing in his doorway. "Marcus, right?" He got a nod. "Who told you he was bad?"

"Mac's student did. His present one."

"Excuse me, Buffy's an immie?" he asked in shock, looking at Oz. "I'm going to have to dodge her for eternity?"

"No," Oz assured him, rubbing down the oiled back. "Take Richie back to the bedroom and let him calm down. We'll settle this." He turned to look at Marcus. "I don't think he's bad, he doesn't look like he's had a dark quickening."

"No," Richie said, shaking the hand off. "I've heard about you, you taint people."

"No, he makes demons want to take care of him then they die because they can't have him," Connor said gently. "Richie, he can't hurt you. He's the same as Methos." He nodded at Giles. "Please take care of him for a while." He turned back to his former student. "Marcus, he's been injured, mentally tainted, by Mac and a young woman who hates Oz's lover with her life."

Marcus put away his sword, bowing to Richie. "If you say so, I'll believe it." He looked at Richie, seeing him as he was. "I'm sorry, I only heard that he was bad and was heading for you."

"No, Mac's heading for me," Oz said. He looked at Connor, then at Xander. "You going to interfere?"

"Not if he doesn't come," Xander said quietly. "If you fight, you go across the street or to the house next door." He sat down on the couch, picking up one of the kittens to cuddle against his neck. "And promise me you'll win."

"Mac's a hard one to beat," Connor told him gently. "But we'll try to keep the fight from happening. Insane ones, such as Mac's become, make it harder to absorb their energies without being changed." He looked over at Oz, who had a firm grip on his sword. "We'll deal with it." He looked up as another immortal walked into the house. "Methos," he said quietly. "How did you sneak past?"

"It's a little trick I learned a few hundred years ago. It only happens after much practice." He put the bags on the counter, looking around. "I called someone to come take Mac and her away. They'll deal with him until he's sane."

"Where?" Oz asked, putting his sword down to help put up the groceries. "Can you fix Richie?"

Methos looked over his shoulder. "Did he torture him or mentally torture him?"

"Mentally," Connor called. "He's been warped."

"That's fine, I'm sure it's easily fixed." He walked out, tipping the young immortal's head up to look in his eyes. "They were wrong, Richie, you've known that for a while now. She's been harmful before to Xander, kidnapping and torturing him. They've become everything you've despised." Richie nodded, leaning against his hand. "Come," he said, pulling him up. "Let's take you back to the spare bedroom and you can tell me all about what they told you. I'll give you the real story."

Oz waited until they were locked in to lean against the counter. He looked up as a warm hand landed on his back, looking into his lover's eyes. "This is bad, Xander," he said quietly. "Thank you though."

"I love you, Oz," he whispered, giving him a hug. "I won't interfere unless you ask me to." He clung to his lover, giving him his strength. "If he shows up, we'll deal."

"Methos called the Watchers to deal with him." He straightened up, looking at Connor and Giles, who were staring out the window. "Breakfast guys?"

"No thanks," Connor said. "Methos fed me early this morning and I'm still full." He smiled at Xander. "I thought you wanted to be chained to the bed for the day."

"He's allowed to get free for a good reason, or to come pay attention to us." He patted Xander's back. "Go sit and cuddle the kittens, precious."

"Yes, Oz." Xander walked out, gathering the cats to sit with him. He looked down the hall. "What's up with Rocky?"

Giles walked that way, picking her up. "Hello," he said when she listlessly licked his face. "I'm not sure. She's very lethargic." He brought her back out to the couch, sitting her beside her master. "Should we call a vet?"

"I have no idea about a good one," Oz said, putting the last thing in the refrigerator. "Connor, can you go check his car to make sure there's nothing else?"

"I think he took yours," Marcus said from the corner reading chair. He smiled when Oz jumped. "Sorry, I needed time to calm down."

"Hey, no big. I'd like to think of my house as a neutral zone," Xander said, giving him a small smile. "So, what do you do?"

"I'm a doctor in San Francisco." He caught Oz's hand as he walked past. "I'm sorry to have brought this into your house. You've always been one of the least fighting among us. If Mac comes, I'd gladly take him on for you."

Oz nodded. "Thanks. But he won't be satisfied unless it's me." He pulled the phone book down to look through it. "Okay, we have three possibles, one in the area." He looked up. "Ayers, Myers, and Henderson."

Xander shuddered. "Not the last one. That name makes me ill."

"Okay." Oz picked up the phone after looking at the ads and dialed. "Hi, this is Daniel Osbourne. We have a puppy, maybe five months at the most, whose gotten suddenly lethargic. She's been playing and helping us hand raise some kittens, who are doing fine, but she's suddenly so tired she's sleeping in the middle of the hall where she'll be stepped on." He handed the phone over to Xander. "Myers. He's down the street."

"Hi, this is Xander Harris." He smiled. "Yes, that's me. Thanks. No, it's Rocky. She's really limp and tired looking and her eyes are really tired looking." He nodded, looking at the clock. "Sure, I or my family can bring her up. No, not that family. I've created my own with my friends." He nodded and hung up. "We have an appointment in an hour. When I was little, my dog went to him." He set the kittens aside. "He said to bring these guys in too, just to make sure it's nothing serious."

"I know where the carrier is," Oz said, getting up to get it. He walked back out, sitting it down in front of the couch to put a new towel inside. "Okay, Rocky, let's go to the vet's. Okay?" She made a small barking noise then almost wagged her tail. "Yeah, let's go," he said, lifting her up to put her inside. "Kittens, in," he called. Fluffy and Don walked in but George just stared at him from a few inches away. "No, George, we have to go to see the vet's. Just like the nice lady who made sure you were okay to fly." The kitten still just looked at him. Then it looked up at Xander and meowed.

Rocky barked and George came running. "Empty nest syndrome?" Marcus suggested with a smile. He watched as the carrier was hitched up. "May I stay for a while and talk to Connor?"

"Yup." Oz looked over Xander's outfit. "You need clothes on and we need your wallet since I emptied mine out last night."

Xander jogged toward the bedroom, coming back after a few minutes, looking around. "Can't find my wallet." Giles handed over his. "But mine had a large amount of cash in it."

"So did mine," Oz said with a shrug. "Was it on the dresser?" Xander shook his head. "Huh." He looked toward the upstairs room, smiling. "I thought I felt her. Rupert, go up and free Amanda from your spell?" He walked out of the room, coming back after a few minutes with their wallets and one of Xander's prize bracelets, hitching it on for him. "Thanks." He looked at the thief. "Amanda, meet Xander. Do it again in my house and die."

She yawned. "What was that?"

"A simple spell to stop people from getting into the books without my permission." He looked at Xander, who blushed.

She nodded. "Oh." She looked around. "Where's Connor?"

"I sent him out to check for more stuff in the car." Oz handed the carrier to Giles, who walked Xander out to his car. "Check it first," he reminded. He walked into a chest, looking at the man he had run into. "What's up?" he asked.

Connor pointed at the far wall of the neighbor's house. "What's that?"

"Gibberish. Probably by the surviving daughter." Oz tipped his head a few different ways. "It's written with a left handed slant and is in really bad handwriting. He killed his wife and other daughter. She has Percival." He headed out to Xander's car, looking down inside the open hood. "Did we find something?"

"Not really," Giles said, holding up a microphone. "Just a minor wiring problem." He slammed the hood, frowning at it. "I checked the car over as thoroughly as I could."

"No bombs," Xander said from the passenger's seat. He never drove when he rode with someone else. "Come on, we'll be late."

"Sure," Oz said, getting in and starting the engine, listening to it purr. "You figure it out and tell us?"

"Of course, though there's only one reason I can think of."

"True, the Watchers do have to gather information somehow."

"Which group?" Xander asked with a yawn. "Their's or Buffy's?"

"Point." Oz backed the car down the drive, backing out of the gate. "Off we go. We'll worry about it later." He turned the car around, heading the other direction. "Hate turning that way," he muttered. "Got to do something about that bush."

"We could trim it," Xander suggested with a grin, putting a hand on Oz's thigh. "Relax, it'll be okay. We're surrounded by friends and family."

Oz relaxed and nodded. "Yeah, we are." He headed off a side road, following the signs. "Almost there," he called when George started to howl.

"Stop it," Xander warned. "No kitty treats otherwise."

The howling stopped as they drove into the parking lot of the veterinary clinic. "Gee, we're here and they stop," Oz muttered, getting out. "What a shock." He lifted the carrier out, bringing it inside followed by Xander. "Does your wallet have money? Mine's awfully thin."

Xander pulled out his wallet, nodding. "Money and cards." He checked the cards and the cash, holding it up. "Few missing but it's in bigger bills."

Oz snorted. "She must have consolidated." He put the carrier up on the desk, smiling at the women behind it. "Hi, Harris?"

"Rocky and kittens?" They nodded. "Okay, have a seat, he'll see you in a minute.

Xander sat down next to Oz, looking at the carrier. "I feel like I'm home now," he said quietly, looking at his lover. "I really do."

"Yeah, you're home," Oz said, taking his hand to squeeze. "We're home."

The vet walked out, smiling at them. "Rocky and kittens?" They handed over the carrier, letting them be brought back to the exam room.