Don't Call, Don't Write


How satisfying would it be for him to peel out of Sunnydale in a squeal of burning rubber? But he's not so sure about the Mexican carburetor, and he really wants to get the hell out of here without any more drama. Or farce, which is what it would be if the van broke down before he even got off-campus. He's happy to Thelma and Louise it once he's off in Arizona or Guinea-Bissau or somewhere else that Willow will never find him, but for now he just wants out. So he drives under the speed limit, yields at all crosswalks, and even stops for a couple of chocolate-glazed at the Winchell's right outside the city limits, as if Devon were lying down in the back of the van jonesing for some sugar. The monks in Tibet frowned on sugar, caffeine, and mj, and the last thing he needs to do is lose control while he's still in range of -- well, anyway, he won't eat the doughnuts. But walking out of the shop with the waxed paper bag and the cup of coffee (which he won't drink, anymore than he'll eat the doughnuts) feels to his body like something normal, something it can do on autopilot. Autopilot is good right now. No thinking.

Which is why, when he reaches the van and finds it parked in by an ice cream truck -- an ice cream truck? -- he just stands there for a minute. He doesn't put down his doughnuts or his coffee on the hood of the van to reach for his keys, which is what autopilot wants him to do. But autopilot can't cope with the ice cream truck, or with the figure leaning against the van door. In order to get into his van and out of this parking lot, Oz is going to have to engage the forebrain, exactly as he's been avoiding since leaving UCS. He stands still, hoping that the situation will just go away, so he can leave, and not think. Not think about Willow.

"If you're planning on taking off without telling anyone again, Holden Caufield," said Xander, still leaning against the van, "the least you can do is buy me a doughnut." So much for autopilot. Now Oz is paying attention, and that's just bad.

"Go away, Xander." Xander's pose has such studied nonchalance that Oz is sure he's practiced it in a mirror, and dammit, there his forebrain goes recognizing people and making judgments. Next thing you know he's going to be thinking about Willow and Tara and -- fuck. Xander isn't moving, so Oz still can't leave. "Go."

"It's not that Grandma insists on goodbye kisses from her baby boy, but occasionally dropping by to say 'Hey, Nana, missed you, I'm taking off and probably never coming back this time, keep the cookies warm for me,' wouldn't be amiss." Xander was finally moving, but only to get more in Oz's face with his babbling. Could he just go? "Instead of the secret vanishing in the night trick which made us all so happy last time."

"I talked to Willow."

Xander smiled his crooked little grin. "Yes, which is why I'm here, as I haven't added psychic tracking to my incredible pizza delivering and ice cream scooping skill set. Or at least, she told me you had left, and I hoped habit would out. But even so -- Oz, the only friends who deserve a goodbye are the ones you were sleeping with? The rest of us missed you, too. Idiot."

Why wasn't Xander letting Oz leave? "Goodbye. Here." He pushed the doughnut bag and coffee toward Xander, and the coffee splashed out through the hole in the plastic lid.

"Whoa," said Xander, steadying Oz's coffee-holding hand. "Warning! Contents may be extremely hot!" Oz pulled back his hands, but Xander intercepted. "But I'll take the doughnuts." Oz turned to walk back toward Winchell's. Maybe if he sat inside for long enough, Xander would go away. "Wait, Oz, I'm sorry." A hand rested on his shoulder. "I didn't come out here to yell at you. I came out here to apologize." Oz paused, still facing away, and Xander must have taken that as a request to keep talking. "When I told you that Willow didn't have a new guy --"

Oz jerked out of Xander's grip. "Shut up." Beat. "Wait, no. You knew?" He turned back to face Xander again. "Willow talked to me all night and never told me, okay, I can deal with that, I confused her. But we -- you and I -- were friends. And you're Willow's friend. And you let me go to Willow, and do that to her. You let her see me like that."

Xander held up his hands like a parody of a referee. "No, no, wait. I know. And I didn't know. Or I wasn't sure. I mean, Willow never told me, but I thought, I suspected, I wondered." His voice rose in volume and pitch with each stuttery protest and the new not-improved Thinking Oz didn't like drawing stares with a hissy fit in a parking lot. Though that might have just been folks contemplating ice cream with their evening's doughnuts. He walked around the front of the van trailing a babbly Xander, unlocked the back door, and pushed Xander inside.

"In."

Xander fell on his hands and cursed. "What the hell? Oz?"

Oz crawled in behind Xander and pulled the door to. He settled into a half lotus on his ratty mattress -- as if meditation postures could possibly help anyone deal with Xander, but it was calming to find a physical pattern his body knew well. Almost like autopilot. It gave him the strength to face Xander, who was still lying on the floor of the van. "If we're going to expose Willow's personal life all over Sunnydale, and let's not, can we do it not in public?"

Xander spoke to the steel floor. "I didn't know for sure. I thought, but Willow hasn't said anything. And how could I tell you, when she hasn't told me? And when I didn't know. She brought Tara to a Scooby meeting, and that always means smoochies. But what if I was wrong?" Oz didn't say anything, and after a while Xander went on. "But I should have found a way. You were hurt, and Tara could have been hurt, and if it weren't for Spike we all would have been in for a world of hurt when the Initiative court martialed our Slayerette behinds. My fault. As usual."

Oz let his eyes drift closed. "Sorry, man. Gotta chill for a minute. Get with the Zen or bad dog will out." He used Xander's voice as a mantra to guide his breathing. Up, down, a little choky breath, some silence, all just as a wave for Oz to ride on in the moment.

The shuffling sound of Xander scrambling to his knees was a path running from Oz's ears through each chakra, and the rambling -- "That's relaxing? No kid? Doesn't look like fun." -- grounded his energy. In a cloud of light, pain free, Oz hung suspended as Xander muttered, moved, cursed, leaned forward, and -- unzipped Oz's pants? His eyes snapped open. "Dude, never figured you for a commando man," Xander said, when he discovered Oz's post-imprisonment state.

He clapped his hands over Xander's wrist and tried to pry him off, but gingerly, since he wasn't going to yank the hand that had already snaked into his fly. "Xander, what the hell?" Xander ignored Oz's attempts to push him back and leered at the half-hidden cock. Had this devolved into a porn flick when Oz crossed the Sunnydale border?

Xander shifted his gaze from Oz's groin to his face. "Oz, please? Let me try this?" His eyelashes were very long. Oz's eyelashes, free of dye, were pale, almost invisible. Xander's were dark. "Call it an apology, if you want." They lowered as Xander looked away, like a porn star's mockery of demure, and then Oz wasn't paying attention to them but to the fumbling hand that pushed past cloth and groped for his cock. The reality of being twenty and male intruded on the shock of being yanked from his quest for inner peace by a hand in his crotch, and he hardened as Xander maneuvered cock and balls through his slacks. Oz pushed against Xander's shoulders but, wolf days aside, let's face it, he'd fit in Xander's shaving kit. There was no way he was pushing Xander back without doing himself some sprainage, and he wasn't yet Zen enough to be serene in the face of accidental castration. Especially after a fun-filled night of government sponsored torture.

Xander brushed aside Oz's hands and leaned over. A warm mouth closed around the head of his cock, and Oz gasped. "I don't know what you've been reading, but most guys don't apologize with fellatio." He tried to settle back into his brief moment of cool, but it had been a long time since ... well, since anything. The monks didn't follow a path that allowed for much in the way of self-gratification. He looked down, hoping to find center, but all he saw was Xander's dark head, moving back and forth in time with the amazing suction. A hand cupped his balls, and Oz inhaled sharply. The air whistled into his mouth and he noticed he was chewing on his lower lip. "Xan. Stop," he said, and reached out one hand to rest against the back of Xander's head, pressing him closer.

Xander pulled off and grinned up at him. "Now who's acting like a bodiceripper heroine?" Before Oz's wet cock could even cool, a tongue licked up the side in raspy little cat strokes. He was trying to frame a protest Xander would pay attention to, since his laconic standards weren't cutting it, but Xander rolled Oz's balls roughly and ran his tongue down toward his 'nads. Did a grunt count as laconic? Because he was definitely grunting, which would have been disturbing if could have thought past the mouth around his testicles. Then an almost wolfy whine as his balls were released to the cool air, while his cock was engulfed again. People should have two mouths, Oz thought, so they could suck on more than one bodypart at a time. A hand contorted and reached into the loose slacks -- good thing Riley hadn't found a pair that'd fit -- and groped toward his ass. That was going to mess with his perineal chakra, but then so would this whole surreal experience. A finger pressed against cotton, Oz's cock pressed up into Xander's throat, and Xander made a funky chord -- E flat diminished 9th? -- in his throat, like a Tuvan throat singer. And Oz came. All the anger and frustration he'd been trying to channel with prana and asana and all that crap left him in a rush as his orgasm rocked him. He wondered bemusedly if he should have gone straight to tantra and screw all this internal bullshit. Because for at least 30 seconds now, since he'd come, he hadn't thought about ... Oh. Well, the 30 seconds had been good. And he was young. He had stamina.

And he had confusion. What the hell? Xander was stretching from his kneeling posture, rubbing his knees, and Oz realised he'd been holding his own half-lotus under odd pressure for too long, and unkinked his legs. Mmm, that felt good. A nice burn up his hamstrings. He looked at Xander, who looked sheepish. But happy, maybe. "When'd you learn to do that?"

Definitely sheepish. "Spike."

Oh.

What?

He must have misheard. "Spike? Dead, bleached hair, pointy teeth, once kidnapped you and Willow? That Spike?"

"Yeah, and saved your canine butt tonight, mister." Xander looked at his hands, and so did Oz, who was surprised to see that they looked like normal hands and not like they'd just fondled his ass and helped bring him off. "He's been ... nicer, lately. And last week Buffy and Riley were doing the nasty in this posessed frat house that made everyone want to dance the horizontal tango. We defeated it, but I needed a little manly relief, and Anya and I were fighting, and Spike. Well. Anditwasn'tthefirsttime."

Oz listened to this monologue and found himself smiling. "No?"

Xander met his eyes for the first time since the blow job. "He was living in my basement for weeks. He was frustrated, and I ... I was interested. So he's taught me some things."

"And you decided to come try them out on me?"

Xander's lips quirked into that self-deprecating grin he used when he was about to make himself look like an idiot. "No, I didn't think, 'Willow's sad, I think I'll drive to the doughnut shop and lie in wait for Oz so I can have my wicked way with him.'" He held out one hand to Oz but didn't touch him. "I came to apologize for not telling you what I thought. And then I got here and I realized that was furious at you for running away again, so I made an ass of myself. And then we were in the van. I have all these great new skills, and I had no idea if they'd be... good... with anyone other than Spike. I've never had sex in a van, before, either." Oz thought of high school, and of Devon in the van, and didn't say anything. "It seemed like as good a way of any to say goodbye." Xander shrugged. "At the time. Because I'm an idiot, and apparently gay, except for the liking sex with Anya part." Xander dropped his hand, and looked surprised when Oz reached out for it. "I guess this is where I apologize again, before I let you go."

Oz leaned forward, and held Xander's hand against his own cheek. "No. No apologies." He turned his face to kiss Xander's fingertips. Now he couldn't see his face. "Don't be sorry for this." He wouldn't turn back, wouldn't turn to see Xander's eyes. "But this is where you let me go." He closed his eyes, and rested his forehead for a moment against Xander's knuckles.

Center. Autopilot. Time to take off.