Disclaimer: no-one is mine, I didn’t make them up and the characters and the universes they normally live in belong entirely to their creators and respective television companies (I assume). All I will admit to doing is taking these characters and their universes and mixing things up a bit. Hope you enjoy.
This IS a crossover fic, but I hope to keep you guessing for as long as possible as to whom Willow’s mystery man is, so I haven’t identified with which genre I am crossing it with. The crossover is revealed at the end, and the explanations will follow in a separate story which I hope to post in about a week. I apologize if you take the time to read this story and find out it crosses-over with an area that you wouldn't normally read.
As this is an AU story, some of your favourite characters or events will probably not appear or be mentioned.
As Willow woke, she carefully pried apart her sticky eyes and used her tongue, from a mouth that surely must taste like a cat litter tray, to lick her lips. She groaned as her head protested her sudden movements and mentally promised herself never, ever, to drink so much again. Well, at least maybe not this week.
She moved her arms to try lean on her elbows and get into a sitting position, the first steps towards getting out of bed, when her left arm made contact with a warm soft body.
“Willow, sweetie …..” a strange male voice muttered sleepily, “stop wriggling and go back to sleep.” An arm reached for her shoulder and pushed her back onto the bed.
At the same time, Willow's stomach protested her sudden movements, and clamping a hand over her mouth, she ran from the bed. Where the bathroom door should be she ran into a wall and frantically looking around her found the bathroom door on the other side of the hall.
A jumble of thoughts babbled through her head about strange men in beds, is this how the three bears felt when they found Goldilocks, back to strange men in beds, phone Buffy get her to come over, why has the bathroom moved, should I not be panicking and freaking out?? Oh, and there's a strange man in my bed.
A few minutes later, Willow slumped against the door, a cold washcloth across her face as she tried to remember the night before……. There was Buffy, and Giles’ scotch and … she paused and paled as she remembered……
“Through space and time to find what’s mine,” Willow began to chant.
“Though past or future they may be,” Buffy giggled at the thought of caveman Willow.
“Let me know that things are fine,”
“Willow, that was an awful rhyme,” Buffy was now laughing helplessly.
“And let me see what life will be!" Willow finished triumphantly.
“Now what happens?” Buffy asked wiping the tears from her eyes.
“Now,” Willow hiccuped, “we finish this lovely bottle of whatever it is, and I go have pleasant dreams of my true soul mate.”
Willow snatched the cloth from her face and sighed with relief. It was just a dream. But if it was a dream why did she have a hangover? Sighing, she pulled herself off the bathroom floor and looked around. “Must be dreaming,” she thought as she looked at the unfamiliar bathroom products on the shelves.
She opened the door carefully and peeked out into the hall. Soft snores were heard coming from her bedroom. She crept softly into the bedroom and looked at the figure on the bed. He was blonde, about 6 foot tall, was alive and not a vampire (an obvious plus), looked fit and healthy, and he had the most gorgeous blue eyes ("There's a strange man in my bed" her mind quietly squealed).
Blue eyes?? She gulped as she realized he was staring at her. “Are you alright?” he asked with concern.
“Yup,” she quickly replied, “fine here. I’m fine. Coffee needed. Going now.” The man smiled fondly at her as he fell back into the pillows.
Willow headed for the kitchen. She frowned as she looked around the living room. Looking back at the stairs, she mentally counted them, one less than she knew there should be. The living room – something was off but she didn’t know what. She recognized all the furniture, but, as she skirted round the couch to reach the kitchen, it seemed bigger than she thought it should be and was not quite in the right position - did that ornament on the fireplace not get broken a couple of months ago?
As she waited for her coffee she twiddled her hair with her fingers and looked around her. Everything was perfect – just a little bit too perfect........ with a sigh she banged her head down on the table, winced at the increased pain, and closed her eyes.
When Willow woke, for the second time that day, it was nearly lunchtime. She forced her eyes open again and licked her parched lips. Her headache had eased slightly but she felt like she was on a ship during a storm at sea, before realizing she was being shaken awake by Mr Blue Eyes.
He smiled down at her and pushed a mug of coffee towards her.
“This will help with the hangover,” he grinned at her discomfort and carried on talking, “you should know by now that you can’t out drink Buffy. When she carried you back here you were singing “Eye of the Tiger” at the top of your lungs. Mrs. Henderson next door will doubtless be along soon to complain, so drink your coffee and go have a shower. You’ll feel better soon, I promise.”
Willow stared at him, blinking her eyes and wondering what to say. A hundred questions flitted through her mind, like “Who are you?” and “Where am I?” or "What alternate dimension is this?" but instead of asking, she gulped down the coffee and fled up the stairs, noting again that there were still only 14 and not 15 steps.
She grabbed some clean clothes from the closet, and noted with dismay that men’s clothing hung on the rack alongside her own. She automatically turned towards the bathroom before remembering that it was now on the other side of the hall.
“Suck it up Rosenberg.” she said to herself. “Find out what's going on, then react. Oh and hope that the cutie downstairs is a good guy.”
Dressed and refreshed, she went back downstairs to find her mystery man talking to Buffy. She caught part of what he was saying “…. and she acts like she doesn’t even know me....hey sweetie, feeling better?” Blue eyes turned in her direction again, still filled with concern but worry was there as well now.
Buffy grinned over at Willow, “Someone can’t hold their liquor,” she laughed, speaking in a low husky voice.
“What’s wrong with your voice?” Willow asked, noting that Mr. Blue Eyes seemed really perplexed at her question.
“My voice? Nothing’s wrong with my voice. I always sound like this. What's wrong with your hearing?” Buffy countered. She turned to Mr. Blue Eyes with a slight frown on her face
“I see what you mean, … Willow honey, did you bang your head last night?”
Willow was about to reply when the front door swung open and Xander strolled in wearing a bright orange Hawaiian style shirt, and matching orange eye patch. She didn’t know whether to laugh or cry - he hadn’t worn anything that loud for years.
She sat down heavily at the kitchen table and looked from Buffy to Xander. “Please just let me wake up and find this is a dream.” She closed her eyes momentarily before opening them again, the look of hope fading from her face, as she realized nothing had changed.
Xander looked from one to the other, “What's going on?” - but no one answered him. “Willow? Buffy? Tommy?”
Willow's head snapped up – well, that was a start - she knew Mr. Blue Eye’s name now.
Buffy turned to Xander, “Someone had too much to drink last night and woke up this morning a little bit confused”. She patted Willow’s shoulder gently and moved to the cooker. "You’ll feel better after some food.”
Xander’s eyes lit up at the mention of food, “Yeah, food. Then if nothing changes we can go to Giles', do some research and get more food.” He grinned hopefully as Buffy affectionately ruffled his hair.
“You and your food, Xand. Now go sit down and see what Willow remembers or not, while I rustle up some omelets. Tom, wanna help?”
Tom looked up from his laptop “Sure thing ma’am.. “ He looked at the computer again and seemed to re-assure himself that everything was fine before getting Buffy some eggs.
Xander patted Willow’s knee, “Everything will be fine after food.”
Willow smiled. Sure it was like Xander and Buffy, but they seemed like cliché’s of themselves - Buffy’s didn't sound like that or was so keen on the domestic things and Xander wasn't so food obsessed or wore clothes like that any more. She sighed as she wondered where on earth she could be, then blushed as she realized she was watching what Tom was doing and enjoying the view.
Several hours later, Willow was getting stressed, agitated, and more than a little hyped up on caffeine. She saw Buffy and Tom exchange worried glances, and more than once Tom had groaned in frustration as Willow had corrected the details on a few of the stories they had been telling to pass the time. Willow still hadn't told her "friends" that she knew something was wrong and was desperately trying to find out how different things were here (where ever here was).
For the last half hour or so, as the story telling progressed, Tom had been leafing through a book and making notes on his computer and he kept shaking his head and muttering about having to change the details. Willow watched him from the corner or her eye trying to figure out if he was going to be a danger, but keeping her fingers crossed for a friend.
He met Willows gaze and smiled slightly before being distracted by the doorbell.
“I’ll get it,” Buffy announced. Seconds later Spike joined the company.
“Evening ducks. ‘Ow we all doing then? Bit parky out. Anything 'appening or are we staying in to watch the telly and warm the cockles of me 'eart?” He bent forward to rub his feet. “Me plates of meat are killing me so I could do with staying in!”
Willow could not help but giggle – Spike sounded just like Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins.
The others looked at her with concern as her giggles became more and more hysterical.
Tom reached to hug her, but Willow jumped up from the couch evading his touch. Enough is enough, she thought.
“Look, I don’t know what is going on here or who you are,” she pointed at Tom. Pointing to the others, she continued, “You look like my friends, but you sure don’t sound like them or act like them. I want to know what is going on.” She stood in the middle of the room, arms folded, glowering at the four people in the room.
Buffy, Xander and Spike all exchanged startled looks. Tom sighed heavily and stood, carefully not getting too close to Willow. He tapped a hand against his chest, quietly saying something at the same time.
To Willow’s horror, the room and its occupants disappeared, leaving her and Tom standing in a large empty room.
Tom mirrored Willow's look of horror as she crumpled unconscious at his feet. Quickly bending down, he checked for a pulse before tapping his chest again. His voice shook as he spoke into a small badge that Willow had never noticed.
“Paris to Janeway. Umm ..... intruder alert and medical emergency in Holodeck 4.”