GHS Corrupting the World!
Methos opened the box on his coffeetable with his name on it and groaned just one word once he saw the contents, "Xander!"
Ray walked out of the kitchen and sat in his lover's lap. "What happened?" he whispered before stealing a kiss.
"Xander's corrupted the world," he complained, dangling a silk and velvet thong from his finger.
Ray grabbed the note lying on top of the contents and smiled, busting into laughter after reading it then handing it over.
"Oh, even better," Methos said dryly, tossing both items back into the box. "Amanda and Xander have teamed up to corrupt the lingerie industry."
"I think it's really nice of Xander to help out a fledgling designer by sharing his secrets."
"No one outside the Society will wear a peachskin thong," Methos protested. "And some of us still can't wear them."
"Think about people trying to impress their lovers," Ray said, snuggling into his lover's body. "Going to get that special outfit that'll turn both of them on." He licked across the edge of Methos' chin. "Imagine me standing in our bedroom in one of those outfits."
Methos clutched him tightly as he groaned. "Why don't we explore this deeper?" he suggested, standing up and carrying his lover into their bedroom.
Ray walked out and grabbed their box to find something special to wear this time. He stripped and pulled on the silk and peachskin boxers, fuzzy side in. Then he strolled into the bedroom, kicking the door closed behind him.
Xander wrapped his legs tighter around Oz's waist as they kissed, letting his lover knock on their friend's door.
Oz kicked at Methos' and Ray's door, his hands busy kneading the firm ass cheeks.
The door opened but neither realized it, they were too involved in their kiss. Methos looked at Ray, who shrugged and grabbed Oz's arm. Methos grabbed Xander, forcefully taking him off Oz's body to get his own kiss.
Ray swallowed Oz's growl as he got a kiss of his own, laughing as he was pulled tighter against his friend's body and given another one.
"I believe someone's happy," Methos panted as he let Xander slide down his body. "Did we have a good trip?"
Oz nodded, resting his head against Ray's chest. "Definitely." He let Ray pull him into the living room and sit him on the couch, taking the package he was given.
"You got us prezzies?" Xander asked as he sat and cuddled into Oz's side. "Gee, all we got you was a copy of all the dances on tape."
Methos' mouth fell open and he started to drool. Ray reached over to wipe the spit off. "All of them?" Methos asked, after swallowing.
"Yup, took us a few tries to get each one," Oz said, now holding Xander's hand. "We had to tie me to a chair during a few, but we got them all."
Xander grinned. "I had to do some of them while he was gone. We even got questioned by the hotel's management while we were in London. I showed them what I was doing and they left us alone." He stroked up Oz's thigh with his free hand. "He's even in a few."
Ray smiled at Oz. "Accident?"
"All but one. That one was planned." Oz plucked the hand off his thigh and held that one too. "Xander, we agreed, no more free shows," he admonished gently.
"No more?" Methos asked, one eyebrow going up.
"I told you about that one report," Ray reminded him. "It could only have been those two that started that love-in in that park in Paris."
"Not quite," Oz said.
"But we joined in," Xander added with his naughty grin showing. "We got arrested in Paris, London, and New Delhi for PDA."
Oz shook his head. "Your forgot almost being stoned in Rome by the little old widows."
"Oh, and that too," Xander said, nodding. "But we only had one demon encounter."
"True," Oz agreed, "and he didn't try to take you, which was nice."
Xander winked at Methos. "It was Blair, the vampire from New York."
"Ah, Blair. How was he?"
"Doing good. He approved of Oz."
"He was very nice to us during our dinner. Did you know that this vamp spent a hundred grand to be my naughty's next-to-last job?"
Methos nodded. "I heard." He smiled at Xander. "Aren't you glad you're out of that business?"
"Very," Xander agreed, leaning closer to Oz. "I'm never going back." Oz patted the hands he held captive. "I'm not."
"Good." Oz let Xander's hands go so he could pull him into his lap. "We've got enough money."
"Good," Xander whispered, cuddling into him. "Never going back."
"Shh," Oz said, stroking him to calm him down. He looked at Methos. "Mac told him you said he'd been a pro."
"He said whore," Xander mumbled into Oz's shoulder.
"I'm not surprised," Methos said stiffly. "He's fully healed now by the way. Joe said he's written you both letters to beg for forgiveness." Oz snorted. "He wants to send them." Oz didn't move or make a sound. "All right, I'll tell Joe no for you." He shifted, moving Ray to his other side. "What did you see on your trip?" he asked, trying to lighten the other couple's mood.
"The Taj Mahal," Xander said, giving him a smile for the effort. "And Paris, London, Rome, Venice."
"We took the train all over Europe," Oz added. "I showed him my cliff in Greece."
Ray smiled. "It sounds romantic."
Methos patted him on the back. "Your next vacation, we'll start traveling." Ray slid off his lap and walked into the bedroom, slamming the door. He got up and followed him, coming back after a few minutes. "Do you have your travel agent's number?" he asked softly.
"It was a 'let's go here' trip," Oz told him. "Someone you want help killing?"
"Nah, I'll handle it," Ray said as he walked back out to join them. "Sorry 'bout that."
"Fine, but if it becomes necessary, *I'll* handle it," Methos reminded him. "No one gets away with that."
Xander looked at Ray. "Can we help?"
"Nah, I'll deal." Ray flopped down and spread across a chair. "It's okay. I can always quit and sue."
Xander nodded. "It'll make it easier for the next guy."
"Or harder," Oz told him. "Backlash."
"No, there's a process in place. I'm already in the system." He looked over his shoulder at Methos. "You doin' supper?"
"Nope, we're taking you out," Oz told him.
"Let's all shower and change while you guys pick a spot." Ray nodded so Xander stood up and pulled Oz with him. "Give us twenty," Xander called from the spare bedroom.
Ray looked at Methos. "You pick the spot while I change too?"
"All right. The Drake?"
"Less fancy," Ray suggested as he stood up. "Nice clothes but no jacket sorta place." He wandered back into their bedroom.
"Diga's it is," Methos muttered, grabbing the phone book.
Xander followed the butt in front of him to the bedroom, falling into the bed and grabbing Ray for his teddy bear. Oz looked up at Methos, who nodded, so they climbed in behind their respective, exhausted lovers, not bothering to strip too far.
Methos pulled Ray into his arms, fighting Xander for possession of his lover. He smiled as Oz grabbed Xander, and then they both followed Ray over to him. "Night," Methos whispered.
"Night," Oz said.
"Shh," Ray complained. So Xander kissed him. "Never mind."
Oz stroked through Ray's hair. "You nap, we'll protect you." He met Methos' eyes, seeing the pain in them. "It won't happen again," he whispered. "Another cop won't shoot at him ever again." Ray had let that incident slip over dessert and now they were all pissed about his job.
Methos nodded. "I know." He gave Ray a squeeze.
Xander lifted his head to look at Methos. "It won't. If it does, Ray comes to live with us until he finds a better and safer spot." He got a nod in response. "You too," Xander told him, reaching out to pat him on the face. "Not going to separate you two, not that dumb."
Oz gave Xander a kiss on the back of the neck. "Sleep, Xander. We'll deal with this tomorrow."
Xander nodded and put his head back down. "Night."
"Night," Methos said, reaching out to stroke down the soft cheek.
Oz grabbed his hand to hold. "Relax and sleep," he told him. "I'll take watch tonight."
Methos let himself relax.
Xander hopped off Ray's car, giving him a smile. "Oz is forcing me to Jace's tomorrow and I was wondering if you'd like to split a pizza. You too," he offered to Ray's partner.
"Sure, just not now," Ray said, giving him a small smile. "Give us an hour?"
"Okay," Xander said with a shrug. "Where?"
"Place three streets over," Ray's partner Ray suggested.
"I'm not going to a cop place," Ray said firmly. "Mario's, six blocks east." He patted Xander on the arm as he slid into the driver's seat. "One hour."
"I'll be there," Xander agreed, stepping away from the car, waving at it as it drove away. He turned to find Ray's boss standing behind him. "Just here to make an offer of lunch." He walked around him, heading back to their rental. He still had to find a host's gift.
Xander handed Ray the present he had picked up for the couple. "For letting us use your spare room. I figured it'd be useful."
Ray sat down and peeled the paper off, smiling at the spice rack and cookbook. "Yeah, we'll use this for supper."
Ray's partner sat down and glanced at the box. "Taking gifts?" he joked.
"For the use of his guest room," Xander replied coldly.
"Hey," Ray said, laying a hand on Xander's arm. "He's okay."
Xander relaxed. "I'm sorry, Detective Vecchio."
"No problem, some of us are very protective of Ray." He whistled, brining over their waitress. "Pizza, right kids?"
Xander nodded. "I ordered one with everything but anchovies, but I left the drinks up to you guys."
"Okay, a beer for me and a soda for Ray here," Vecchio said. "Kid, you get something for yourself?"
Xander smiled. "Yeah, I got it, but can I have a refill, Ursula?" The waitress smiled as she took his cup, giving them an excellent butt wiggle as she walked away.
Ray smiled at his partner. "Xander is on a stop-through on his way home from Europe."
"Yeah, Oz indulged me," Xander said with a sappy grin. "We went all over, not to the commercial places, but everywhere else."
"Anywhere in particular?" Vecchio asked.
"Rome, Venice, London, Paris."
"India," Ray added.
"Yeah, India and Kyoto, Japan too."
"Must be nice to be able to take off like that," Vecchio noted. "How long were you gone?"
"Fourteen months," Ray sighed. "All we got were cute postcards and one phone call telling us to send the animals."
Xander grinned. "That was Oz. We were in London for the second time." He smiled at Ursula as she came back over. "We took the train all over though, so we passed through everywhere else. Thanks," he said as he took his drink.
She leaned down and whispered something
He shook his head. "Nope, not me, but I am taken. Jace is a wonderful woman." Vecchio choked on his beer.
Ray waited until they were alone. "This is an okay place to be us," he said quietly.
Xander winked. "Oz said that I couldn't tell anyone about him that didn't already know."
"Yeah, good idea," Ray said, looking out the window. "It hasn't been that long since you were last here."
"He's got his earring," Xander whispered. "I put it on him this morning." He leaned closer. "Besides, there's a guy outside who's watching us."
Ray nodded. "IA."
"Bastards," Vecchio muttered.
"That's why we're *here*," Ray reminded him. "I don't think Xander wanted to go be ignored by cops."
"True," Xander agreed. He got out of Ursula's way so she could put down their pizza. He pulled out his wallet and showed her the top picture. She gave him a hug and left them alone.
Ray looked over at the picture. "Ah, you, Oz, and Jace. Nice picture."
"Thanks. It was in Bombay, in the market. She was looking for someone who was going to sell her a bunch of fabric and stuff for the resort." Xander showed it to Vecchio, and the people sitting outside watching them.
"I remember," Vecchio said as he served himself. "Eat, we've only got an hour. We can't afford to have a step out of line with them watching."
Ray grabbed a few slices. "Today might be a good day after all," he said after eating his first bite.
Methos wiped his hands before grabbing the phone, then he dropped it so he could run for the door.
Xander caught up with him next to the elevator, taking the apron off his host and tossing it back at their door. "What happened and where am I driving you?" Methos stared at him like he had just noticed he was there. "I won't be the one to tell Ray you had an accident."
They stepped onto the elevator and went down to the garage, where they met Oz. He followed them to the rental car, pulling back his keys back out. "Usual hospital?"
Methos nodded as he climbed into the back with Xander. "He needed minor surgery."
Xander let the old man cling to him and take comfort from his body. "I'll take him to Jace's with me," he said softly. "He'll be safe with me."
Oz cleared his throat. "I still have to call her."
"Fine, I'll still take him with me and protect him once we can go."
Oz nodded. "Good." He drove out of the garage, heading for the only hospital he knew.
Xander stepped out of Ray's room, blocking the cops from coming in. "Nope, he's asleep. No one other than family." He glared at Vecchio as he walked up. "Go change your shirt before you make Ray panic again," he hissed.
Vecchio looked down at himself and shuddered. "Yeah, I'll go do that." He pulled out his phone and walked away.
Xander looked at Ray's boss. "No, he wants left alone. Not even going in there." He got out of the way so Methos could walk out. "He asleep again?"
"Yes, thankfully. We got him calmed down from this latest nightmare." He looked at Ray's boss. "You knew he was in danger," he said coldly, putting all five thousand years worth of pent-up rage into it. "You did *nothing* to protect him. You will *not* be seeing him until he's ready."
"Adam!" Oz yelled from inside the room.
Methos ran back into the room and Xander stepped in front of the door again. "Go away and come back when he's ready or we'll have you removed." He got out of Vecchio's way, shaking his head at the young woman walking behind him, Vecchio's sister and a helper at the station. "Ray's trying to sleep. Later," he said gently. She nodded and turned, going back to the small waiting area. "Boys," he said, going back to glaring at the cops, "go home."
Ray's boss stepped closer. "I need to get his version of events. We have Vecchio's but it's procedure."
"He's sedated," Oz said as he walked out to stand beside Xander. "Come back tomorrow or wait until then, but you're not going in there without taking our lives." A few of the officers went pale and looked away. "Go home. He's safe with us."
"That's not fair," Vecchio said from behind them.
"Ray's having nightmares about uniforms and the guy who shot him. You're here because he asked for you. They're not wanted." Oz looked at Ray's boss. "Go home or go wait, but no uniforms and no other cops near him until he wakes up."
Xander nodded then flinched as Ray screamed behind him. Vecchio disappeared into the room to go help. "Leave," he said coldly.
One of the hospital's security guards walked over to the group, looking at Xander. "Please move this to the waiting area, you're blocking the halls and upsetting the nurses."
"They were leaving," Xander told him. "The patient has asked for them to leave."
The guard nodded. "And you are?"
"Ray's best friend." He walked into the room and shut the door. "I left it with the security guard," he told Methos as he walked over to the bed. He bent down and kissed Ray on the forehead before giving the older immortal a long hug. "He'll be fine," he promised. "Oz, planning?"
"I called, she's expecting you day after tomorrow." Oz looked over at Methos. "Jace has a doctor on call, he'll be well taken care of."
Methos nodded but he climbed onto the bed and clutched his lover as tightly as he dared.
Xander looked around Jace's resort's lobby with a frown. It looked much worse than the last time he had been there. He walked over to the desk and looked around, but no one was here. He rang the bell and a crying woman walked out. Xander hopped the desk to hug Jace, cradling her gently against him. "Tell me who did it?" he asked.
She smiled up at him. "One of the bigger places is pushing me out. They took my staff last week." She wiped off her face. "So, you've come to be safe?"
Xander smiled. "Jace, let me help you deal with this. Oh, this is Ray. I'm not sure if you've met."
Ray wiggled his fingers from the end of his sling. "Hey, Jace."
"Oh, you poor *baby*," she said, coming out to give him a hug. "How's your arm?"
"It's okay. I have my pain killers so it's all okay." He looked over his shoulder as the doors slammed open and sighed, pulling out his badge. "Guys, thugs weren't requested as part of the package deal." He put it in the lead guy's face, who snorted and pushed it away.
"You're out of your jurisdiction." He looked at Jace. "You being reasonable yet?"
She smiled sweetly. "There's nothing reasonable about your boss' offer. Leave my place."
Xander signed Ray and himself in, pulling out his platinum card and laying it on the book. "Guys, we're recuperating. Leave before someone on major drugs loses it." He smiled when they all looked at Ray. "Not him, me."
The thugs walked out, again slamming the doors.
Xander looked at Jace. "Truth, is this your only place?" She shook her head. "Good. Pack your precious things and be prepared to run with Ray if you need to go." He grabbed the keys on the book and headed for the stairs.
Ray followed him. "Xander, what are you gonna do?" he called, watching him walk faster.
Xander looked at the man sitting across the desk from him, giving him a slight, but cold, smile. A short talk with a police detective in the local vice unit had led him to this point. The guy trying to push Jace out was deeply in debt for this buy-out. So he was proving his point in a way the man would understand. He was buying the small motel the guy had put up as collateral for the loan. "How much will it cost me to buy out his loan?" His smile was meant to reassure the nervous man, but it only made him twitch worse. "It'll be okay, I'm simply proving a point."
"Yes, but he had *friends*," the bank man whispered.
Xander shrugged. "So do I, just of a different sort. How much?"
Xander flipped open his checkbook. "Okay. Who do I make this out to?" He looked up when all he got was silence. "Do I need to call someone, you don't look so well."
The bank man picked up the phone and dialed a number off the form in front of him. "Maybe we can get this settled before you have to write that check," he suggested mildly.
Xander walked into Jace's restaurant with an older man beside him. They sat down across from her, and Xander touched her hand. "I think we've reached a solution," he told her.
"Ma'am, I had no idea that this was a refuge for people with a less than...human background." Jace looked at Xander. "My own background is such," he admitted.
"Maybe Xander didn't explain...."
The older man held up a hand. "I did some checking once he told me and I *know* who comes here." He smiled at her, a fatherly look. "I've known a few of you and I applaud you holding a neutral spot for people like you. I'm going to stop my campaign, but I'd like you to think about opening another such resort in Europe. I'd even consider backing you if you did."
Jace relaxed. "I've been looking for the best spot for a few years now. How do you know?"
"A nice woman named Samantha raised me."
Jace nodded. "I knew her. She was a very good woman. I was sorry to hear she had been ambushed."
He nodded. "I like you. We will leave you alone from now on and we will encourage your staff to come back." He stood and bowed to her. "Be safe, old one. I respect you." He patted Xander on the head, giving her another smile. "You have a very strong guardian in him, cherish him." He left the resort.
Jace frowned at Xander. "We are human," she reminded him in her best teaching tone.
"I was going to lie and tell him about the demons." He shrugged. "I know you're human. A very intelligent, gentle, kind, and loving human."
She stood up and kissed his cheek. "You're a good boy, Xander. Stay out of it next time and I won't tell Oz about this." She sauntered away.
"But I was being good!" he called after her. He smiled up at the waiter as he walked over to the table. "Can I have something to eat? Just something light until Ray gets down here?" He nodded and hurried away.
Ray looked around the casino Xander had dragged him to after their dinner, shaking his head at the extravagance. "I thought you didn't gamble." He continued to watch Xander playing some strange card game.
"Oz took me to Monte Carlo. I wanted to see how Vegas compared." He put down another hundred dollar chip, taking control of his cards. "He taught me this game. I usually do pretty well." He flipped over his cards and took all the money on the table, flipping a small chip to the dealer before getting up and leading Ray over to the slots. He handed him some chips. "Come on, I'll pick your machine." They stopped a passing chip girl, changing what they had for small coins, then Xander prowled the rows of machines. He finally found two a few seats apart. "I would've given you that other one but there wasn't another good one where I could see you," he explained. He sat down and fed the machine in front of him, smiling when he felt the 'waiting feeling' he had started to pick up on while in Monte Carlo. "Within the hour," he told Ray.
Ray grunted and pulled the lever.
Xander helped Ray gather his winnings into a cup, smiling at the guard walking over to them. "Take him to change that out and bring him back?" he asked the guard. "I'm supposed to be watching him and my machine's going to go off in a few more tries."
The guard nodded and led Ray away, Ray looking over his shoulder at Xander.
Xander pulled his lever again and smiled as he hit a small jackpot, using one of those coins to hit it again. Three more pulls emptied the machine into his hands. He grabbed a cup someone was holding out and got up to follow Ray. Unfortunately, he caught sight of who had given him the cup. "Buffy," he said, hugging her. "What're you doing here!" He stepped back when he realized something about her. She wasn't the same Buffy he had known. He looked her over. "Gee, you changed your style," he noted, taking in the short leopard print skirt and leather bustier. "Not a bad look," he admitted, nodding behind him. "I've got to go find the guy I'm watching."
She smiled at him, licking her lips. "You smell good," she told him, leaning closer to sniff him again. "Very good."
"Shoot," Xander said, backing away from her. "I haven't been away from Oz that long." He backed into a firm body and looked over his shoulder, laughing nervously. "Hey, Spike," he said, sidestepping out of the way. "What's up?"
He looked the human over then nodded Buffy over. "Do you know why he smells this way?" he asked her.
"Oh, I get it," Xander said, running a hand through his hair. "You turned her?"
"No, I was already dying, he found me," she told him flippantly. "Why does he smell like that?"
"Because his body *likes* us," Spike purred, looking Xander over again. "I ran into him a few years ago, but I didn't have him long enough to figure it out."
Xander backed away by another step. "And you won't either. I've got a lover, don't need you. Bye!" He jogged away, heading to the cashier window to go find Ray. He really needed to leave before things got ugly. He shoved his coins at the woman who was behind the cage beside Ray's. "I really need to leave," he told her quickly. "Ray, we've got to leave."
"Why? What happened?"
"Um, something really bad. We've got to get back to Jace's." He glanced around behind him, noticing Spike and Buffy strolling toward them. "See the couple?" Ray looked and nodded. "We don't want to deal with them. They're not quite what they were when they were breathing." He took his cash and tipped the woman, tapping his foot while Ray counted his money. "Come on!" he said, nodding at the door into the resort. "Let's go." He took Ray's good arm and led him away, shadowed by a security guard and the vampires. He smiled at the doorman as they walked out. "Cab?" he begged. "Like now? We really don't want to become lunch."
The doorman whistled and waved, and a cab drove up. He opened the door for them, giving them a smile.
"Jace's resort," he said, handing the guy a business card. "And please don't let the blonds standing in the doorway follow us?"
The cabdriver looked at them then at the blonds, then shrugged when Spike waved. "Sure, but are you sure you want to be in mine?" He flashed his feeding face.
"Are you going to kidnap me or otherwise hurt us?"
"No," he scoffed. "You're safe." He drove away. "Which one was that?"
"That was Spike, childe of Angelus, and Buffy, former Slayer," Xander said quietly. "And I don't want to run into my former friend, no matter how nice she might be." He got a hard look in the mirror. "I live on the Hellmouth and I only kill those that try to thin out the population."
The vampire laughed. "Good. I don't mind hunters like you. I had a hunter the other night, she wanted to kill all of us, even herself."
Xander slumped back in the seat. "Red hair?" The cabdriver nodded. "Damn, Willow."
"Yeah, how'd you know?"
"Because she and I both used to fight beside Buffy," he said quietly. He shuddered. "At least she's taking on the duty of Buffy. Maybe she'll be able to figure out if she's bad."
Ray touched Xander's arm. "Want to tell me about this too?"
"Back in the room," Xander agreed, giving him a hug. "I promise, they won't get you. Not while I'm living. I don't like Buffy that much, not anymore."
"As long as you don't try to protect me from the facts like Meth does," Ray grumbled. He looked out the window, watching the resorts pass. "Can we go sightseeing tomorrow?"
"Sure," Xander told him, kissing him on the cheek. "When we get up. We'll take one of the resort's cars and run around." He took Ray's good hand and squeezed it. "You okay?"
"Yeah, I was having fun there for a few minutes. I've never won at real gambling before." He grinned at Xander. "What about your other chips?"
"I'll get them cashed out tomorrow," Xander told him. "We'll go back and see if you can't win some more." He handed over some money to the cabdriver, not caring which bill it was. "Keep it," he said when the driver's mouth fell open. "Thanks for the timely save." He pointed at the door. "I'm being paranoid. Please?" The cab pulled up the few feet and Xander let Ray get out first, hurrying him into the resort. "Jace?" he called, sure she was watching the security cameras if she wasn't close by.
"Xander," she said as she walked out of the back room, "you didn't need to yell." She looked them over. "What's wrong? Which immie was it?"
"Vampires," Xander told her. "An old friend." He nodded at Ray. "Can you make sure he gets upstairs while I use the computers?"
"Call the boy," Jace sighed.
"He's not at home," Ray said, pointing at the bodies coming down the stairs. "Guys, are you all right?" he asked, jogging over to get a hug.
"Fine," Oz said, looking Xander over. "Which vamps?"
"Spike turned Buffy," he said, giving him a 'help' look. "And Willow's in town looking for them."
Oz sighed and pulled his lover into his arms. "If Willow can handle it, then we'll let her. She'd have a better feel of it." He sniffed Xander. "Damn, you're emanating again."
"Yup, Buffy told me that, and Spike told her why." Oz pulled him tighter. "Thank you for coming sooner."
"Hey, no big," Oz told him, leading him to the stairs with a wave at Jace. "So, what did you do today?" he asked. He laughed when Xander stiffened. "Besides showing off your money skills."
"Um, she didn't tell you?" Xander asked hesitantly, pulling away slightly.
Oz pulled him closer. "No, but you better."
Methos looked down at Ray, staring into his eyes. "Are you all right also?"
"Yup. My arm's fine. I had someone look at it this afternoon while Xander was gone."
"Oh, where did he go?"
Ray grinned. "He went to strong arm the guy who was trying to force Jace outta business." He winked. "He was raised by a woman named Samantha so he understood and is leaving her alone."
Methos groaned. "Go up to the room, I'll be right up." He patted Ray on the rear. "I promise." He waited until Ray had trudged up the stairs to turn and look at his student. "Samantha's adopted son?" She nodded from behind the desk. "And he promised to leave you alone?"
"He's in his eighties," she told him, looking up. She gave him a smile. "Xander tried to tell him we were a haven for demons but he recognized me somehow. He wants to help me open up a sanctuary in Europe."
Methos shuddered. "As long as he doesn't come back."
"He won't," she said happily, showing him the paper. "He was in a car wreck tonight."
Methos looked at the paper and nodded. "Good. At least you're not in danger anymore." He turned and jogged up the stairs, going to find his lover in the suite they were sharing with the other couple. He found Oz sitting on the couch waiting on him. "You left Xander alone?"
"He's showering. What else happened?"
"It was Samantha's adopted son," Methos said, sitting across from him. "Your mate decided to take matters into his own hand and to fix the problem Jace was having." Oz gave him a serious look. "Of course, the bastard died earlier too. That may complicate matters or not."
"It won't," Ray said as he walked out. "Xander said that the guy told his people, before they came over, to leave Jace alone." He smiled at Oz, waving his injured hand. "Did you need him to go hunting tonight?"
"We're leaving it to Willow," Oz told him. "Did he make sure you won?"
Ray grinned. "He picked out the machine after playing some funny card game. The one those Bond guys plays in the movies."
Oz groaned. "That boy's evil at Baccarat." He looked at Methos. "He's lost *once*. His second game. He tried to second guess himself."
"And I have some strange ability to know when slots are going to hit too," Xander said from their bedroom doorway. He winked at Ray. "You didn't do too bad."
"Nope. I won a couple thousand," Ray said, holding out the money. "Hold that for me?"
Methos took it and looked at the mass. "Congratulations, Ray." He pulled him in for another hug. "Would you like to take a tour with me tomorrow?"
"Sure. Um, Xander..."
"I don't mind," he said, grinning at them. "This should be a vacation for you two. Have fun." He walked into the bedroom and came back with his pants. He started emptying the pockets into Oz's lap, finally taking one last chip that he had hid in his pant's cuff for luck. "I wasn't that bad tonight," he said with a grin.
Oz pawed through the chips and the money. "Xander, you've got to watch out for that. They thought you were cheating the last time you did this." He looked up, seeing the grin. "You had fun, didn't you?"
"Yup," Xander said proudly. He winked at Ray. "Wanna go do it again tomorrow night?"
"Sure," Ray said with a shrug. "If Meth don't mind."
"I think we'd better come with you," Oz told him. "Just so Xander doesn't get into trouble." He grabbed Xander's hand to squeeze. "Not that you'd do it on purpose."
Xander grinned. "Of course not." He looked over at Ray and smiled. "Want me to teach you how to play?"
"No thanks." Ray tugged on Methos' hair. "Coming?" he asked, nodding at the bedroom. "I'm going to take a long, hot bath."
Methos stood up and followed him. "Good night, you two. Please don't keep us up while you punish him, Oz." He closed the door.
Xander gave Oz his best pitiful look. "I don't deserve it," he complained.
"Oh, really?" Oz stood up, walking around the couch, still holding onto Xander's hand to pull him along with him. He stopped to put the money down onto their dresser, then walked Xander into the bathroom. "You didn't go talk to a mobster to get him to ease off Jace?"
Xander shook his head. "I went to the bank to go help her," he said with a grin. "They decided to call in the bad guy to make me see sense."
"Uh-huh. And did you take Ray to a casino somewhere that Jace couldn't watch over you?"
"Yes," he admitted with a grin, "but I was with him. He wasn't ever more than a few feet from me, except when the guard helped him cash out while I was waiting on my machine to hit."
Oz shook his head and pointed at the tub. "Run me some water, naughty. We'll talk about this while enjoying the jets." Xander clapped and bent over to start the tub, while Oz considered the nearly bare rear. "Hmm," he hummed, grabbing the lube off the counter, from where he had put it earlier, and slicked himself up. He pushed Xander over further and pulled out his plug, diving into the waiting hole. "Never let Ray out of your sight," he whispered. "Methos is very paranoid about his darling. Same as I am about you." He pulled out and rammed back in again. "Never."
Xander whimpered and pushed back. "Yes, Oz, I'm sorry, love."
"Good," Oz said, leaning over his back, starting a gentler stroke. "As long as you learn your lesson." He pulled out and climbed into the growing water. "Come on," he said, patting his lap. "You're gonna give us bubbles, babe."
Xander grinned and slid down onto his lover's body, riding him to the best of his abilities.
They were only interrupted by someone screaming from the other room.
Methos logged onto his email account and hummed as he saw the spam sitting in it. He decided to go through a few of them, stopping when he saw one with a picture of his Xander on it. "What the *HELL*!" he screamed, bringing Ray from the bathroom.
Ray looked at the message and clicked on the link, frowning when he saw which videos it was. "Oh, they're gonna be pissed," he whispered, backing away from the computer. "Who did it?"
Methos looked over the page. "The same people who sold the Pamela Anderson tape a few years back," he growled. He jumped as his door flew open. "Oz, this wasn't my fault," he said, waving a hand at the computer.
Oz leaned over and read it, his growl getting louder. "I'm going to kill them," he muttered, walking out of the room and slamming the door again.
Xander politely tapped a few minutes later before walking in, leaning down to calmly read the message. "I'll be damned," he said, changing screens to send a message to someone he now knew. He closed that screen after the message had been sent and nodded at the couple. "Forget it," he whispered. "I'm going to calm Oz down." He walked out, gently closing the door behind him.
"Ooh, so glad I'm not on the other side of that," Ray said, going back into the bathroom.
Methos nodded and followed him, making sure his lover was still all right.
Xander hung up his phone and smiled at Oz. "Did you know that one of the tapes got stolen and copied in London?" he asked nicely, a sure sign he was pissed.
"No, but I believe it. How many do they have?" He sat down on Xander's lap, kissing him to calm him down. "We'll deal."
"Oh, that's not the best part," Xander said, holding up a finger. "There's a new cult. Based on the dances. Apparently someone bought one and almost killed himself doing it, and saw God."
Oz shook his head, resting his forehead against his lover's forehead. "I don't doubt it. You're worthy of being worshiped."
Xander snorted. "Don't change the subject, Oz."
"I'm not trying to," Oz lied, sliding off his lap. "Want to go take a walk with Jace? She wanted to know."
"Sure. I could use the calming influence." Xander stood up and left the suite, going down to find his friend.
Methos walked out of their bedroom and looked at Oz. "What is he going to do?"
"He's going to try and sue them, and then he's going to hurt someone if he doesn't win." Oz sat down and got comfortable, putting his feet up. "I'm sure we'll hear something by tomorrow." He looked at the door as he heard a thump out in the hall. "Wonder if he hurt his hand again?" he asked the room in general.
"That was me," Ray called. He walked out rubbing his head. "I hit my head on the sink." Methos pulled him over and kissed the top of it. "Thanks." He snuggled into the comforting arms. "So, what'd he do this time?"
"He's started proceedings to sue the guy," Oz said with a shrug. "It's all he can do."
"Maybe something else should be done," Methos said calmly. "Do we have the only copy of all the tapes?"
"Nope. We've got a set in a safety deposit box in LA. We sent the set there after we copied it." Oz sat and listened to the noises in the hallway. "Someone's coming and they're walking funny." He reached under the couch for his back-up sword as someone knocked. "Who is it?" he called, walking over to answer it, sword held to his side.
"Let me in," Xander panted.
Oz opened the door and let him in, checking the hall. "What's wrong?"
"Press," he panted.
"Damn," Methos muttered. "We should change resorts." Everyone looked at him. "Jace won't want the publicity."
"She told me to come hide," Xander told him. He shook his head. "She thought it was for the best if we stayed up here."
"Something's been bugging me," Ray said. "Where's the animals?"
"You didn't leave them, right?" Oz asked.
"No," Methos said. "I think he meant now. We did promise to bring your animals with us."
"Oh. They're coming tomorrow. They had to go to the vet's for a checkup. The airline demanded it when they found out they'd been in Europe and Asia." He patted Xander on the arm. "Go dial the desk so I can talk to Jace." Xander nodded, going to do as he was told.
Oz sat down at the desk and took the phone. "Jace, what's your plan?" He smiled. "That's sweet, but those are people who would eat us alive." He looked at Methos. "Of course. Sure. We'll stay in then. That's not a problem. No, I didn't want Xander to go back out when there were people trying to get him anyway." He hung up. "We're staying. She'll go get anything we need."
"Okay," Ray said with a shrug. "Are we switching rooms?"
"Why?" Methos asked. "They probably know we're up here."
"Point, but this is gonna cause hell at home."
Methos sighed. "I'm sorry, Ray, I never thought about that." He stroked down his face. "We'll call them in a bit, from downstairs, all right?" Ray nodded. "You can explain everything to your boss and let him handle it for you. He's usually on your side."
Ray nodded and sat down on the couch, adjusting his sling so he was more comfortable. "Okay. I'll let you tell him."
Methos nodded, leaning down to give him a hug. "I will if you want. Don't worry about it." He stood up and walked out of the room, going to do as he had promised.
Oz looked over at Ray. "We need games," he joked.
Ray grinned. "We've got games if we want them. Xander could always teach me more of the dances. Let's close the curtains."
Oz nodded and got up to close the curtains. "I'll even let him do something special and wear his leathers." Xander looked up at him. "If you want to, that is."
"I want," Xander said, standing up. "Make sure no one can see through them and shift the furniture. I'll show Ray one of the side dances in the second line of the story, the ones about the times he was a slave." He walked into the room, coming back a few moments later with his leather pants on. He pointed at a spot beside him, turning them away from Oz again so Ray wouldn't be self conscious.
Methos stepped back into the suite and stopped, watching the intricate dance. "I'm lost," he admitted after a few seconds. "Can you start over?"
Ray smiled at him as he moved closer to him. "Sure. Xander?"
"Of course." He stopped and panted. "Oz, I'm out of shape."
"What do you want me to do about it?" Oz asked simply, patting his lap.
Xander straddled the offered legs, giving him a kiss. "You've got to make me work out, babe. I need to be flexible to do this stuff." He stood back up and nodded at Ray. "Ready?"
Ray put down the glass of water he had been gulping and nodded, getting back into place. He started off the first movement, a subtle hip side-to-side movement.
Methos sat down, entranced by the wiggling his lover was doing.
Jace knocked on the suite's door, smiling as a disheveled Oz opened the door. "Hi, sweetie," she said, walking inside. "How did he learn that?" she begged, giving him a hug. "And is that what's on the tapes?"
"It's a whole series of dances," Oz told her, leading her over to the couch where everyone but Xander was lying spent and nearly asleep. "He figured out some were stolen from us in London when we dubbed them."
She shivered. "From the little I saw, it was more than enough to outsell that other video they stole." She sat down beside Xander and pulled him against her for a hug. "Sweetie, where did you learn that?"
"Across a barrier," he said quietly, looking at his hands. "Were you spying?"
"Only until I figured out what was going on. I was looking for someone who I think broke into the rooms around yours." She gave him a squeeze. "Can you teach those?"
"Yup," Ray said, waving a hand in the air. "I'm getting the special lessons."
"Which I may not live through," Methos groaned, rolling onto the floor and crawling for the water pitcher Oz was pouring from. "Please?" he begged.
"Shh, or I'll let Xander have you," Oz said, handing him a glass.
Ray lifted his head. "Not."
"Okay, not," Oz agreed.
Ray smiled. "Thank you. Those moments are by arrangement only." He took the glass his lover was drinking from, finishing it off for him. "Babe, you can't have too much or you'll get sick."
Jace snickered. "I got told that about jogging too."
Xander grinned up at her. "I could go do that right now."
Oz groaned. "No. You may get energized by sex, but the rest of us need a nap."
"Desperately," Methos agreed. He looked at his student. "How much did you see?"
"Just the first few moments," she admitted. "I wouldn't mind seeing the whole thing."
Methos shivered. "I haven't seen the whole thing."
"I've seen the abbreviated one," Oz told them, drinking from the pitcher since they were out of glasses. "It started a riot and Xander had to be rescued. And he wasn't wearing his leathers."
Xander winked at Methos. "But I was good."
"Yup, you were good," Oz agreed, sitting down next to him. "Very good. You still are." He wiped off the beads of sweat on Xander's chest. "But you're never preforming in public again," he said slowly and clearly.
Xander grinned. "Not without a lot of bodyguards."
Jace snickered. "I can imagine." She pushed Xander up and stood up. "If you wouldn't mind, I would like to see some more of it, Xander. I promise I'll be good and not kidnap you." She smiled at Oz. "If you say so, I'll even tie myself to a chair."
Oz nodded, staying serious. "I had to."
Methos raised a hand. "I will from now on." He looked at his lover. "Learn the rest," he pleaded.
"Sure. I'll let Xander teach me all of them," Ray agreed with a grin for the other GHS in the room. "Which part next, teach?"
"You can both do a performance for me," Jace offered.
Methos sighed, "Let us get some strength back first, dear. You can see it in a few days."
She giggled and walked out, running into the man she had been looking for. She grabbed him by the chin and looked into his eyes, then dragged him down the stairs by his balls.
Oz walked over and shut the door. "Now what do we do?" he asked.
"Nap and bath, not in that order," Ray suggested, putting his head down on Methos' shoulder since it was nicely sitting in front of him.
"I agree," Methos said, reaching up to pat the head. "We'll be in our room. Have fun wearing him out." He got up, helping Ray up and into their room.
Oz looked down at Xander. "If you need more, you've got toys," he said, limping into the bedroom. "I may never be the same shape again, you stretched me too far," he noted as he closed the door. "I'm stretched out of shape."
Xander grinned and laid back down on the couch, getting comfortable so he could work out the remaining ache.
Xander looked across the table at the lawyers for the people who had his tapes, then at the mediator the judge had suggested to keep this out of the press. "I don't care, they *stole* it. It's private property."
"You put it on tape to give away," one of the lawyers said, reading a paper in front of him.
"To *a* friend. There's two copies of the set and I'll be damned if I want those being sold either!"
"Sir, a person in your position of notoriety...."
"Huh?" Xander asked. "I'm not famous. You guys screwed a normal guy this time. I'm not a rock star or an actress."
"Hmm. We have here that you've got another tape out on the market," he said, picking up the paper to read. "That you're an amateur porn star."
Xander snorted. "I'm not and if someone stole something else of mine, I'd like to know about it. These are the only tapes I've ever done anything for." The paper was handed over to him. "Oh, he did it," he grunted. "I'll deal with him later. I know what's going on there. That was made illegally, I never agreed to it." He crossed his hands. "Guys, you messed up this time. I'm not a porn star, I'm not famous, and you guys stole from me." He looked at the mediator. "If I don't get what I want, I'm going to continue to sue them. I have no problems with suing them for all they're worth and then some." He stood up. "You have an offer on the table. All the tapes will be destroyed and this campaign will end. The profits from this stolen merchandise will be turned over to me, and I will find a way to make sure all copies of this tape have been destroyed. If not, I won't agree to anything." He walked out, slamming the door.
The lawyers looked at the mediator. "He isn't being reasonable."
"It's his life," the mediator pointed out with a great deal of distaste. "What went on in his hotel room is not public business as he's not a public figure. I'm going to rule in his favor if you don't come up with some very heavy evidence." A paper was pushed over to him and the mediator read it, then snorted. "I don't care what he used to be, now he's an upstanding citizen who doesn't do that anymore." He pushed it back. "That's not good enough, gentlemen." He stood up and left.
The lawyers looked at each other and shrugged, then at their client. "You screwed yourself this time," the lead one said. "There's no hope this will go your way."
Xander got the judgement letter and let Ray open it, hugging Rocky as hard as she would allow. Ray whooped and handed it back to him, so he read it, slowly smiling. "I really won?"
"You really won," Ray agreed, giving him a hug. "Way to go, Xander!"
Xander grinned up at him. "Good. I'm glad we won." He read the judgement. "This is really great."
Ray patted him on the head. "Soak it up, Xander. I'm going to go find the s. o.'s and tell them." He took the letter and left the room, inadvertently bringing a kitten with him. He strolled down to the front desk, smiling at the familiar young man standing there. "Hey, Robbie. Do you know where our significant others are?"
"They're in the gym," he said, pointing at a room across the hall. He looked over the edge of the desk and waved. "Hi, you."
Ray looked down at his cat and frowned. "Fluffy, why did you follow me out? You know you're not supposed to be walking around the resort." He picked her up and tucked her under his arm, going to give his lovers the good news.
Methos picked Ray up and spun him around, ignoring the cat completely.
Oz picked her up as she jumped down, wobbling badly. "Yeah, we'll beat them up later for making you dizzy," he cooed.
Methos looked at him. "Did you just make that disgusting voice at my cat?"
Oz looked up. "Disgusting voice?"
"You cooed!" Ray taunted.
"I don't coo!" Oz said firmly, handing her back. "Treat her better. You made her dizzy." He picked up his sword and cleaned it off. "Are we done for the day?" he asked Methos.
"Not quite," Methos said, pulling Ray into his side. "I want you to be here when I ask Ray something." He looked down at his lover. "I want to do the same spell they did on Xander, Ray. I want you to stay with me permanently."
Ray pulled back and looked at him. "Like forever?" he asked, looking around for an exit. "Um, that's..." He turned green and ran to find a trash can before he stained the carpet.
Methos sat down hard, staring at Oz. "He said no," he whispered.
"No, he's commitment phobic," Oz told him, getting down to calm him down. "Believe me, he didn't say no. You just shocked him." Methos focused on him instead of the area around him. "He didn't say no, you startled him. You went too fast."
Methos swallowed then nodded slowly. He looked over as Ray walked back in, giving him a pained look. "Was that a no?"
Ray got down, kneeling beside his lover, holding his face in his hands. "I'm scared, but I want to be yours."
Oz silently got up and left them alone, going to call Giles. They'd need him.
TO BE CONTINUED...