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Title: The Prisons We Make
Author: whichclothes
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Pairing: Spike/Xander
Rating: NC-17
Warnings: non-con, graphic violence
Genre: dark, hurt/comfort, first time
Word Count: 55,756

Summary: It’s over a decade since Sunnydale collapsed, and Xander is doing time. A fellow prisoner mentions a vampire he once saw displayed at a tourist trap. Freedom doesn’t come easy.

Why You Should Read This:

The Scooby gang is gone, Angel and co in LA have been dusted and Xander is at loose ends. A ‘normal’ job isn’t much and actually boring after fighting demons and saving the world. Saving the world may not be on the agenda, but there still are plenty of demons to slay. Xander gets thrown in jail for killing a demon that looked too human.

While in prison, Xander makes friends with a fellow inmate who is also a (friendly) demon and, in exchanging life stories, the demon tells a story of a vampire held in a backwater ‘see the freaks’ sideshow. Once released from prison, Xander skips town and heads toward the backwater.

This is a grim, almost bleak story. On his own, without the Scoobies, Xander is a lost soul. His self-imposed mission to see if the vamp is Spike and then to save Spike from the hell he’s held in is all that seems to give Xander purpose.

But, being BtVS-verse, all is not what it seems. There are other players in this story, seen and unseen, good and evil. Xander saves Spike from the freakshow but what if the cost is too high?