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Unavoidable Lies

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Review of chapter "Chapter One" from HeatherDee
Truth that. They ignored it in season 7. That's one of the many reasons why that season stank.

Ahh the story.. Well the only point I'd question is Xander's belief that he's somehow guilty of killing Jesse. He isn't. Jessie was already dead and gone. Your implied point here is that he didn't think that way though. It's reasonable that he would think that way,.. survivor's guilt can do strange things to you.

I like this. You present him as a believable human teenager, not some cardboard cut out and you've done it without bashing. Very good.
Comments from author:
Thanks for your reviews! I'm glad someone else can see that there has always been more to these characters than meets the eye. Both Xander and Buffy have hidden motivations and goals that never really come across in the show. I watched both parts of Becoming the other day and even though I've seen it before (and liked and hated parts of it) it was very powerful in a way I hadn't noticed. I'm glad you liked both stories; I tried to make them different while carrying on some key similarities.
Review By [HeatherDee] • Date [24 Feb 10] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from (Past Donor)IntoOblivion
Beautifully written, and a lovely perspective on something not often mentioned. I enjoyed the progression of how his tenancy to lies was exasperated by his association with the Scoobies. They do, as you mentioned, so often deal in lies.

I don't know if I've just forgotten, but I don't think we saw any recriminations about Xander's lie in the show - it felt to me that any tension caused by this was in fannon not cannon and that Buffy, though she probably did not like it, understood why Xander had felt the need to hide what Willow was doing. The fight was so close anyway that any hesitation on her part would have meant Angelus' victory.
Comments from author:
Thanks for taking time to review! My friend and I were discussing the lie in season 2, what we did and didn't like about it, and the point came up that lying is a Scooby way of life. So, this story was spawned; habits are hard to break.

In cannon, the lie he tells is only mentioned one other time. In season 7, the episode Selfless, Buffy is going to kill Anya because she's getting her vengeance on again and killed an entire frat house of boys. Xander tells her that she doesn't know what its like to have to kill someone you love; she brings up Angel and Xander and Willow cheering her on to slay him. Willow pops up with 'I never said that.' But, in typical Joss fashion, they steamroll right over it. So Willow knows Xander lied to Buffy back then, but I don't think Buffy picked up on the fact. It's this little random scene squished inbetween the major plot points.

Sorry if I went a bit overboard there, lol. It was a tough situation that everyone was in and Willow often gets credit for the magic, Buffy gets hers for stopping Acathla, but they weren't the only ones who had to make hard decisions to get them to that point. Thanks, again!
Review By [(Past Donor)IntoOblivion] • Date [24 Jan 10] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from kaleecat
Nicely done. It really captures a deeper level of thought about the web of lies Xander (and the others) have to live their lives in. I've always thought Joss did a disservice to the characters, particularly Xander, by killing and then forgetting Jesse. His best friend, brother, died by his hand even if it wasn't intentional Xander would suffer survivor's guilt, not to mention as you said--what does he tell Jesse's parents?

And I agree with your Xander's thinking re the big fight and Willow's spell. It was a no win situation, and while Xander's decision in canon was perhaps not 100% altruistic, it had also been previously shown in canon that Buffy was too blinded to stop Angelus even after Calendar's death. Within the auspices of *your* narrative, it all works and its also quite melancholy. What is the cost of the weight of lies?

Thanks for sharing such a thought-provoking piece.
Comments from author:
Thanks for the review! I really enjoyed getting into his mind. I know that I've read a lot of different reasons for why Xander told his lie, but none of them ever seemed complete. I couldn't help but think about how bitter I'd be if one of my friends had to die for being a vamp and another one got to live. Jesse always kind of seemed to be in the background of Xander's hatred, to me. Joss doesn't handle his death, at all. Jesse was such an integral part of Xander and the show just threw him away. But Buffy gets to run away and whine for months because she killed a man she'd only known for a few months? How is Jesse being forced onto Xander's stake any different than Buffy being forced to send Angel to hell to save the world? Neither of them wanted or meant to.

Sorry about the rant, lol. Thanks again for taking time to tell me what you think!
Review By [kaleecat] • Date [23 Jan 10] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from Shulik
Your story is very well written.

I know I'm going to sound like a huge bitch for saying this, but at the end of the day- Jesse didn't make any great sacrifices for the cause. He died because he was a horny high school student who followed a hot chick out of a club. He didn't know about vamps and go out specifically looking for them like Xander and Willow, there was no heroic sacrifice in death by hormones.

P.S. What everyone seems to forget about Jesse is that he was accidentally killed by Xander. During the melee with Buffy and the other vamps, someone knocked him onto a stake that Xander was holding. That's it. No big heroic killing of your best friend due to the monster he'd become, it was just an accident which gave Xander enough justification for turning into a huge asshole.
Comments from author:
When I mentioned sacrifice, I meant it for Xander, the friend that he lost. I was talking about the relationship between the characters that was no longer there. And if your friend died of some incurable disease, it doesn't mean you killed them, you're still going to feel guilty. Also, if hormones are a justification for being killed, that means everybody deserves to die.

You don't seem like much of a Xander fan, and that's okay. But I didn't write this for anyone to be in a heroic light. Xander can be asshole, just like Buffy can be a bitch, Willow can be overwhelmingly self-righteous, and so forth. The point of fanfiction is to give us, as authors, a chance to redeem or re-interpret the characters actions, whether we like them or not.

P.S. I am aware of the events of 'The Harvest', which is why I never said Xander actually killed Jesse. But survivor's guilt is a very real and potent thing. Thanks for dropping me a review.
Review By [Shulik] • Date [23 Jan 10] • Not Rated
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