I own nothing. Buffy's Joss's, Halo belongs to Bungie. I'm just a poor bus driver. Boo hoo.
It was two days after the events in the library with the Sisterhood of Jhe, and Buffy, Willow and Giles had met to discuss Xander's standing in the group. Whilst this little meeting was going on, Xander was in lunchtime detention for snarking off to Principle Snyder again.
"I don't know Buffy, this really isn't a good idea. It would crush Xander if he was pushed completely out of all slaying activities," said Giles as he polished his glasses.
"But Giles, he just gets in the way, or gets hurt. He's got no special powers, and it's not as if he can actually fight," Buffy replied. "No this ways better 'and' safer for Xander."
At that moment, Faith pushed her way into the library,"Yo, B, Red, Jeeves. Where's Boytoy?" she asked as she boosted herself up onto the counter.
"Detention with Snyder" said Willow looking uncomfortable in Faith's presence. "Why?"
"No reason" said Faith looking bored, "what ya talking about?"
"Whether or not Xander should still be slaying. Buffy and Willow think not-" started Giles.
"Boytoy's got some wicked moves on him. Took out one of the Sisterhood that I was fighting the other night, saved my ass," interrupted Faith. And then she dropped the bombshell, "and I also heard he took out a gang of zombies on his own too."
"What!" shrieked Buffy and Willow. "We told him to stay at home out of trouble."
Giles just put his head in his hands, "this isn't going to go down well with Xander, Buffy. He's not going to accept it easily at all."
"He's just going to have to," said Buffy stubbornly, and with that, she stormed off to class.
True to Giles prediction, it didn't go down well with Xander, who met up with the rest of the Scooby gang after school in the library. When told of the final decision, ie. Buffy's decision, it went down like a lead balloon.
10 minutes after storming out of the library, Faith caught up with Xander playing idly with a knife he'd taken off a dead demon 2 weeks previously, when she carefully approached him.
"You OK, X?" she asked carefully.
"Oh, yeah fine," answered Xander bitterly. "Why shouldn't I be. My 'best friends' are kicking me out of the only thing in my life thats worthwhile, my home life is shit, and lets not forget that Cordy hates me too. Just peachy, with a side of keen," he snorted.
"I hear you about a shit home life," muttered Faith, in a louder voice she said, "I just wish we could start afresh somewhere else."
Getting into the spirit of things, Xander said, "I wish we could be super-soldiers or something." Not realising that the saying 'the walls have ears' could at times be quite literal. In this case, it was a vengeance demon that was hanging around, never dreaming that she would get both the White Knight 'and' the Dark Slayer to both make a wish that she could grant.
At that precise moment, she teleported in, and said "Done", and both Faith and Xander were whisked away to a new fate.
The next thing that both Xander and Faith knew, was someone screaming at them to wake up.
"I am Chief Petty Officer Mendez, the rest of these men are your instructors. You will do exactly as we tell you at all times." Was shouted three beds down from Faith, and then the first day began.
After the shock had worn off at waking up 6 years old again, Faith and Xander gravitated towards one another again, feeling semi secure in each others presence and not quite so alone, even in the midst of 73 other children.
They had memories, which clearly weren't theirs, of being told that they had been recruited to be soldiers, but what blew both of their minds was the fact that they was on a different planet. A planet called REACH.