Author's Chapter Notes:
Well, this is my very first story of any kind, and it’s been awhile since I’ve written anything. My memory is also a bit hazy on the exact details of certain Buffy episodes, so if events are a bit out of place or missing altogether, well there’s your reason. But, all reviews are welcome, good and bad. Suggestions and tips are more than appreciated, as I really have no clue what I’m doing.
Authors Notes 2: I also intentionally changed some things that just made more sense to me. Like one thing, the day Buffy, Willow, and Xander get their costumes is on Halloween. Throw that in right after school. I figured one of them might mention to Giles where they got their costumes had it been a day before, which would lead Giles to figuring things out earlier than expected. Of course, this is my story, so it really wouldn’t matter anyways, but I just wanted that to be the case.
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters of Buffy. Nor do I own any characters from Naruto. If I did, I’d tell you, trust me. There will be some characters though that are mine, I just haven’t really thought of who, though I know their roles.
Chapter 1- Ethan’s Shop
Stepping into the store, Xander already had in mind what he was looking for. Having a very limited amount of money to spend, he figured with his set of Army fatigues at home, all he would need is a toy gun. Dubbing himself the $2 dollar costume king, he set forth to complete his mission. As luck would have it, after approaching a bin labeled “Toy Guns”, he saw that there was nothing left.
“Figures, the ole Harris luck” said Xander. Looking around to see if there was something else, he was unaware of the man who stepped behind him.
“May I help you with anything” said a voice carrying a familiar accent.
Trying not to act startled, Xander turned around and saw a man around Giles age. “If you told me there were any more of those lying around, that’d be great” he said, pointing to the empty bin.
“Toy guns, now what costume were you planning on going as” asked Ethan, who in truth really could care less, as long as the boy purchased something.
“Well, I have some fatigues at home, so I was hoping that I could complete the soldier look with a toy gun” said Xander. “I guess I’ll check if Party Town has any, though with my budget, I doubt I could afford it.”
“Maybe we can see if there’s anything else that might interest. Soldiers are quite an unoriginal these days.”
“I’m sorry, but I doubt I can afford a full costume here. Like I said, I don’t exactly have much of a budget to work with” said Xander, getting a slightly odd feeling from the English man.
“Well, let’s cross that bridge when we get to it. I’m the owner of this shop, my name is Ethan. My goal is for every customer to leave a satisfied customer.” Of course, Ethan could care less about his customers satisfaction, as long as they left with something from here in they’re hands. Money not being his main concern, was always still nice to have as a bonus, and giving a kid a discount wouldn’t hurt him. In fact, all the more reason to help. Being able to suggest a costume idea when the kid’s in need, and who knows what kind of Chaos could be wrought from him.
“If you say so. By the way, you wouldn’t by any chance know a man named Giles…it’s not often we get English people around here.”
Well this is certainly a surprise, thought Ethan. What are the chances that he’s talking about Rupert Giles. Seeing the boys face looking over to a young pair of women, one in particular, as she fawned over a 18th Century gown, Ethan knew he had struck gold. Looking over himself, he was shocked to see that the girl was indeed the slayer. Like Christmas on a Halloween, Ethan thought to himself. If you were coming to the Hellmouth, you had to have your information, and a Slayer on the Hellmouth was necessary information indeed. Knowing the Chaos that would come from the Slayer alone if she chose that costume, giving this boy a hefty discount to ensure more Chaos would be more than worth it.
“Would you be talking about Rupert Giles” asked Ethan, getting the boys attention. Seeing his nod, Ethan had to repress from jumping in joy. The chances indeed, he thought. “This is a surprise, I never thought Rupert would be in California of all places. Me and him go way back, to our younger years. How is he doing these days?”
“He’s librarian at my school. Guess it’s a small world” said Xander, oblivious to the man’s sudden change in attitude.
“If that’s the case, then let me show you some of my better costumes. I can’t let a friend of Rupert’s go as a simple soldier. Also, I have one in particular that’s bound to impress your young lady friends over there.”
Realizing he had been glancing towards Buffy and Willow time to time, Xander had to hide a blush. “It’s umm…not exactly….well that’s not really important or anything” said Xander, slightly embarrassed he had been caught staring.
“Sure, whatever you say my young lad. Well, if you can follow me over here, I have one costume I just received. It came a bit later than the others, so most kids already had theirs by the time I put it on display” said Ethan, as he led the young American boy to the back. Of course this was a lie, as he already sold 10 other costumes that came with it. Not familiar with any of them and only coming with a brief description of each, he really didn’t give it much thought of the effects they may have. Chaos was his job. Knowing the particulars of every children’s costumes he had in stock wasn’t important, as long as they wrought a change in their wearer. From the looks of the costumes, it was obvious that would happen. Still, those red cloaks had intrigued him. Hmm, Ethan thought to himself, perhaps I should look over those descriptions when I get the chance. “Well, here it is.”
Xander saw the costume the man had led him too. This definitely was not what he had planned on. A loose fitting white shirt with the chest fairly exposed, black pants, and what looked like a purple rope for a belt, was displayed on a mannequin. Black sandals were on it’s feet, and black cloth on the arms. Next to it, leaned against the display, looked like a brown sword with it’s scabbard on. “I’m not so sure about this. This is not exactly what I had in mind” said Xander, as he eyed the costume.
“Nonsense. You look to be in decent enough shape to pull it off. Beside’s, this costume here is fairly original. No one has purchased any thing quite like this. I guarantee you’ll impress you’re lady friends” said Ethan, a little excited at the possible effects this costume could have for the kid. Knowing he knew the Slayer and Rupert bloody Giles was simply icing on the cake.
“Even still, like I said before, I don’t think I have anywhere near enough to afford this.” Xander, a bit uncomfortable at the idea that he might wear this costume, was trying to argue against it. And even still, he really did doubt that he would be able to afford such a costume, and it did stand out, he had to admit to himself. The problem was, it may stand out to much.
“Don’t worry about that. How about this, you tell Rupert, Ethan sends his regards, and I’ll loan you the costume for a night for what you were willing to spend on the toy gun.”
Now Xander hadn’t lived on the Hellmouth his whole life without growing a little suspicious of things, even if he had only found out about it a little over a year ago. Still, at this point, his options were limited, and try as he might, he really couldn’t find a reason why not to wear it. His embarrassment earlier this morning with Buffy saving him from Larry still fresh in his mind, he was a little anxious to see if he could pull off such a look. He was just hoping that look didn’t cause more embarrassment. That was the last thing he needed. Male pride can only take so many blows.
“Fine, I’ll take it, but all I have on me is $10 bucks, so even for a loaner, it seems like that’s a bit of a stretch for you.”
“Like I said young man, Customer satisfaction is my main goal. Besides, I have a feeling you’ll be able to pull of this look. Just give me a few minutes to get everything ready, and meet me at the cash register.” As Ethan took down the costume to wrap up, he couldn’t help but wonder what would happen to the boy later tonight. Looking at the sword, he knew the costume had to have some skill in using it. With the Slayer being helpless, hopefully this boy might provide some protection for her and others. Of course, that’s assuming this costume is one who plays nice with others. Ethan was by no means a good guy, but he wasn’t heartless. And getting the Slayer killed, especially with her bloody watcher Ripper, was more than likely a death wish. Still, he was a loyal worshipper of Chaos, so whatever pleases Janus is fine by him.
As Xander looked at himself in the mirror, he couldn’t help but feel a little excited. Looking at himself, he could feel a little more confident than usual. The loose fitting white shirt did indeed expose a lot of chest, but fighting Vampire’s for the last year or so definitely helped with his physique. The black pants, which were baggy, but tight around the shins, lead to black sandals which were wrapped up to his ankles, which made it seem as if they were connected. The rope was a little harder, as he had to wrap it around himself a few times since it was so long. He wasn’t so sure about the knot he made in the front, which seemed a bit too big, but he had tried to get it as close as possible to the way he saw it in the store. The sword, which wasn’t real, but looked good enough, was fit in the back of his costume in the rope. He had to angle it a bit, but it was fit in place so that if he reached behind him, he’d be able to pull it out. It was also fit in pretty tight, so he wouldn’t have to pull out the sword completely with the scabbard. He hadn’t noticed earlier, since he was only able to see the front, but the shirt he had on had a symbol on the back, right on it’s collar. He wasn’t to sure what the symbol was, but it looked to be in the shape of a fan, red on the top and the rest white. Maybe later he’d ask Willow to find out about it, but that wasn’t so important.
“Here’s hoping this costume doesn’t make me look like a fool. The last thing I want is another encounter with Larry” said Xander, who even though felt more confident thanks to his clothes, was also a bit self-conscience about how much of his front he was exposing. “Off to Buffy’s I guess.”
As Xander walked up to ring the doorbell, he couldn’t help but feel a little chilly. “Sheesh, maybe I should have thought of an undershirt.” Not that it got that cold in this part of California, but still, a breeze when your hardly wearing a shirt still affects the body. Oh well, too late to turn back now, thinks Xander as he rings the door.
As Buffy opens the door, he has to admit that she looks great no matter what she wears.
“Buffy! Lady of Buffdom, Duchess of Buffonia, I am in awe! I completely renounce spandex.” Well, not completely, but I’ll keep that to myself.
“Well thank you kind sir. That's quite an outfit you have on yourself Xander.” Now Buffy was never unaware that Xander was very attractive. But with Angel, and Willow’s crush, she never gave it too much though. But seeing his costume, with muscle’s she never knew he had exposed, and she had to admit that he was looking very drool worthy tonight. She had to remind herself, best friends don’t think that sort of thing about their best friends, but still, it was hard not to notice.
Forcing down a blush, “Thanks Buff, I wasn’t to sure about wearing this, but that makes me feel a lot better.”
“Your welcomed, but wait until you see…” Buffy says, and looks to the top of the stairs as she hears Willow about to come down.“….Casper." Damn Willow. The dissapointmet is clear on Buffys face.
“Hi” says Willow as she makes her way down.
“That’s a mighty fine Boo you got yourself there Wills.” Xander knew Willow like the back of his hand, and knew every year she had the same costume. Though from the way Buffy made it seem, he thought she might have gone for something a little different this time around.
“I guess we should get to the school and get the rug rats, the last thing I need is to give Snyder another reason to hate me even more.” The troll had cornered Buffy earlier that day, getting her to volunteer for escorting duties. She had dreams that one day she’d find out Snyder was really a troll demon, one she’d get to slay. I guess a girl can dream.
“Wow Xander, that’s some costume you got on.”
“Thanks Wills, I was telling Buff a second ago that I wasn’t to sure about this.”
“No, it’s perfect on you….I mean that it looks nice, in that you look good… I mean it just seems to fit you, that’s all.” At this point, Willow was glad she had a sheet over her. Her face must have been beet red by now.
“Thanks Will, I got what you mean.” Seems like Willow is a bit nervous about tonight. I can’t blame her. Even though Giles says this is the Hellmouth’s night off, I can’t help but feel a little skeptical. Good thing Buff is with us though, and wow, how not manly did that sound?
In the back room of Ethan’s, there’s a two-faced statue on a stool. We see Ethan kneel down in front, and cut his hand.
“Chaos. I remain, as ever, thy faithful degenerate son.” Ethan than proceeds to smear the blood from his hands onto his forehead. “I’m looking forward to tonight’s Chaos” he says with a malicious smile.
As Xander is escorting his group of kids, he flashes back to what happened when they got to the school. Larry, being the gorilla that he is, decided to jump at Xander, making him flinch.
“If I had just a little more strength, I'm not sure what I would do to Larry. What I do know, is that it would be bad” Xander says, as all of a sudden, a wave of dizziness overcomes him.
As he stands back up, there seems to be something a bit different about him. As he surveys the scene in front of him, he notices what looks like monsters to be running around everywhere.
“Hmm... this is new. Last thing I remember, I was talking to Suigetsu. Could I have gotten caught in a Genjutsu somehow.” As he looks around, there’s seems to be something different about his eyes.
“Xander, thank God I found you” yells a red-haired girl as she runs up to him. “Listen, there’s something very weird going on, and we need to find……Oh my God Xander, what happened to your eyes.”
The figure formerly known as Xander looks at her, and we see that his eyes, usually dark brown, are now red, with what look to be three commas in the red of his eyes, surrounding a black pupil. As he gazes upon her, his face seems to darken.
“Who and what are you” he says, reaching around his back, about to pull out his sword. I’ve somehow been caught in a genjutsu, but for some reason, I can’t seem to see through it, even with my Sharingan.
“Listen, your name is Xander, and somehow you were changed into your costume...and we really need to find Buffy” says the strange red-head.
With his hand on his sword, and looking around, he says “I have no clue who Xander is, or what this Buffy is either. Now I’ll only ask one more time, who and what are you? What type of Genjutsu is this?”
“Genjutsu?...whaa?..Just listen, my name is Willow, and somehow everyone has been changed into their comstumes. I was dressed as a ghost, and the body you’re in is my best friend’s, Xander. Please, we need to find Buffy. She’s the slayer, she should be able to figure this out.
His hand leaving his sword, he starts to think. Apparently, she doesn’t even know what Genjutsu is, but that’s assuming she’s telling the truth. Besides, I have never seen anyone wearing her type of clothes, ninja or not. I was just in the Land of Waves, and this place looks like no other I’ve ever seen. Deciding to give this girl the benefit of the doubt, until I can at least get a bit more information, seems like the best course of action. I sense no murderous intent from her, though I can’t seem to pick up much off her anyways. “Hmph…fine, but I want some answers if I’m to help you find this…Buffy.”
Oh no, it looks like Xander is in full on costume mode. It doesn’t help that I have no clue who he is, and what the hell is up with his eye’s. He almost looks….evil. I guess I have no choice, and if he can help me find Buffy, all the better. I hope he knows how to use that sword. It doesn’t hurt that he looks like a total hottie right now, red eyes aside. “Fine, I’ll help you if you help me. Umm..by the way, what’s your name.”