Jesus, does it ever end? (REWRITTEN)
Disclaimer :I don’t own, you no sue ^_^ Property of Joss W. and Laurell K Hamilton
FR18 for future chapters
Ahh Jesus H Christ. Xander thought staring at the pile of books Willow was trying to get him to read. Willow and Buffy had left an hour ago to go shopping for groceries. And had left Xander scowling at the huge pile of books in front of him. He always was stuck at home hurt. But he was grateful to the dim lights. Willow had read that a new shifter could be sensitive to light and even sound. Okay... so he had gotten Puppy Chowed. Or was that Meow Mixed? To make it short and sweet, were-leopard decided he’d make a good full moon snack.
But that wasn’t the only thing that give him the willies. The world had changed, no more were the captain foreheads, and extremely fugly things. Willow's magic had changed something, now outside Sunnyhell vampires were citizens, didn’t have a game face, had freaky-deaky powers and controlled animals. But worst of all, they didn’t dust. So now he was stuck doing more research on Were-Leopards and the world which they were now thrown into.
Sitting down, gingerly, he rested his wounded back against the overly ,stuffed chair. It was slightly painful be he could deal. Soon they would be moving on out of St. Louis and up to Cleveland to take up post on the newly forming Hellmouth. Surely he’d have it all figured out by then right? Looking around the shabby little house he sat in he shrugged. They had rented it from a place called JC corporation, and it wasn’t half bad. Better than the basement of doom had been.
When a knock sounded at the door he flinched. Who would be knocking? Willow could open the door without even thinking about touching it. So it wasn’t the girls. Standing slowly he hobbled his way to the peep hole. Standing on the other side of the door was a man with brown hair and golden skin. But he wore sunglasses, so Xander couldn’t see his eyes. But Xander knew that this guy wasn’t there to hurt him and so he opened up the door a crack.
“Can I help you?” he said calmly. He automatically regretted opening the door. He may have been taller than the guy, but something told him not to push him too far.
“Hello, I’m Micah Callahan, Nimir-Raj of the Maneater Clan” He said simply
Xander glared at the man “Leave me and my friends alone.” he snapped closing the door in the guys face. Just what he needed the head-honcho of something called the Maneater Clan, why was he such a demon magnet. He didn’t want pity or some kind of Were-animal politics, like the ones Oz had described. He just wanted to be left the fuck alone. But when another knock came at the door he sighed. Turning ever so slightly he looked through the peep hole and standing next to Micah was a petite woman who looked almost like Faith. Rolling his eye he opened the door.
“What?” He snapped, getting grumpy.
“Can we come in?” she asked simply
“No, you can’t come in. Now like I said to your friend here. Leave me alone.” and he shut the door. Hobbling over to his chair again he glowered at the stack of books.
He hated research, he really did. His ass was going slowly numb. He needed some sugary goodness. Like Twinkies, he wanted Twinkies damn it! Scowling a little more he picked up a book and leafed through it. Really, they had scoured the Internet looking for Vampire Information, the information they had gotten spoke about some sort of law suit, that had made the blood-suckers family friendly.
Xander snorted, even he was shacking up with a fanged wonder he wasn't one to call them family friendly. They were nothing but walking Happy Meals. It made him want to sigh, and go to sleep and hope he woke up in bed all the way back in Sunnyhell, even with his alcoholic parents.
Before he noticed time had passed and Willow came walking back into the house, smiling happily.
“Hello, my Xander shaped friend.” she smiled and threw a box of Ho-Hos at him. “Thought you might need a little boost.”
“I like Twinkies more.” he grumbled.
“Hey Ho-Hos are of the good. So don’t go there with me mister.” she pointed at her face, it was her resolve face.
“Alright, Thank you for the Ho-Hos Wils.” He gave his goofy grin.
“We are going to the Library, see if we can find more information.” she chirped, “We’ll be back in an hour or so.” Kissing his forehead in a motherly like way she helped Buffy put away the groceries and then the two left with smiles.
“Great I’m alone, again.” he grumbled and stuffed a whole Ho-ho into his mouth. He gingerly picked up a book, as if it would bite and sighed, little flecks of chocolate flying out of his mouth.
Twenty minutes of sitting around and there was a knock on the door. He glared at the door, why couldn’t Buff and Wils be here when these assholes came a-knocking. Standing he made his way to the door and let it fall none too lightly on the wall as he saw the same people standing outside his door. Mitch, Mike...whatever his name was, that girl and two new guys. But looking at their clothes he would say Vampire.
Whipping the door open a stared down at the girl. “Why are you here again?” he asked tiredly.
“We want to talk. and help you. So don’t be a piss ant.” the woman snapped
“What Anita is trying to say is that, we want to help you. Being a new shifter is really hard on the body.” Said Micah, Xander smiled at remembering the mans name.
But quickly it fell when he noticed that they took it as an invite. “Didn’t you get the message clear enough before. I don’t want any help.” he slammed to door and angrily marched back over to his chair. But when he had only got half of his Ho-Ho into his mouth the door swung in and Micah and Anita stepped through. A key shown in Micah's hand.
Xander sat still, his one eye taking her in. He knew better than to underestimate a girl. So he stood, as fast a he could. “You had no right to do that.” he stated through his mouth full of Ho-Ho. “And I'm not inviting anyone in.” He grumbled.
“Yes I did, we need to speak to you and you’re going to listen.” She snapped “now sit down.”
“We just want you to know what’s going on.” Micah said looking over at Anita.
“I'm well informed ok! I've been around this stuff for my entire life! I was born on a Hellmouth for dancing Jesus' sake!”
“But everything is different on them.” Micah said shaking his head at Xander like he was a child.
“I really don't want to do this now. I mean I'm too tired and it's been a long and boring day. So just go away.” Xander turned his back on them and walked into the Kitchen.
“May we come by tomorrow then?” Micah asked politely.
“Yeah sure, but leaved your fanged friends behind.” Xander shouted from the Kitchen. When he was sure the door had closed he took in a deep breath. She had almost broken out, something about Anita. She was cold, well the energy around her was, the thing that had given him the most wiggins were the black streaks that were menacing. The color did not match her other two auras, the dark purple and the warm red. He could see her and it made him shiver, he knew that something was about to go horribly wrong.
Xander laid down on the long couch with a sigh. He really needed to figure out his life. First the whole, oh jeez I have no home, then the vampires with rights, and now getting Meow mixed. It was certainly unpleasant, to say the least. Now he was thinking like G-man, freakin A. His thigh hurt like a bitch and it didn't help at all it just made him a droopy sad Xander. A smile flickered his face at the word droopy. However he decided to take a nap, because who cares if he didn't research. He was no good at it anyways.
Xander's eye popped open when the door opened. Though his vision was blurred he could clearly see the red blur that was Willow.
“Hey sleepy head, I knew we'd come home to find you snoozing.” she chirped.
“Yeah Xan, you look really tired still. You should take a bath and go to sleep.” Buffy said setting down a large armful of large tomes.
“We had visitors today.” Xander said, as he reached for another pack of Ho-Hos.
“Really?” Willow said placing the tomes into three different piles, reliable, semi-reliable and maybe.
“Who was it Xander, did they hurt you?” Buffy said advancing.
“No, I'm fine.” he received a look from both woman. “Well, as fine as cat chow can be. It was a guy who was he was a Ninja of the Maneaters Clan.”
“Thats Nimir-Raj.” Willow corrected.
“Wait how do you know this already?” Xander pouted.
“Books.” Willow answered with a smug smirk.
“Well hey, this is the Xan-man we're talking about. I have a fear of become a were-book.” Xander gave a goofy grin.
“Me too.” Buffy nodded. “I believe that the First Evil created Homework. There by becoming the first evil.”
Xander woke up, refreshed, sort of and in a hell of a lot of pain. He swung his legs over the edge of the bed hissing as his thigh let out a jolt of pain. He whimpered and looked at his nightstand, standing on it was a bottle of green juice. In actuality it was a potion Willow had come up with to help him heal and such. It tasted like apples, something Willow said she had specially done for him. Sighing he grabbed the bottle, and downed it. When he had first gotten attacked willow had got some prescription pain killers she carried for emergencies and had tried to give them to him. He had refused, he had stayed away from prescription drugs his entire life, fearing an addiction. So he had suffered through the pain while Willow had pulled the potion together. Now that he thought back, that first potion had tasted like a turtle's mouth, not that he knew what that tasted like but he was pretty sure it was bad. So now he did a mental snoopy dance for apples and their golden-delicious-ness.
As he hobbled downstairs he mumbled “Limpity limp limp.” It was for self amusement, because if he didn't make the funny he was sure that someone would put him in the loony bin, and he did not want to go to the funny farm...yet.
Delicious smells wafted from the kitchen, Buffy had finally learned to cook. Xander thanked the god that was Martha Stewart. Buffy had learned the entire cookbook and now cooked from it all of the time. This made Xander happy, because he could once again feast without the fear of dying.
The kitchen was bathed in morning light, it was only eight thirty, but he never slept any later than nine. Buffy had learned to rise with him, for the fear of coming down and finding him eating Chinese food or whatever leftovers were from the previous night.
“Morning Xan.” Buffy smiled, flipping the pancake which was suspiciously stake shaped.
“Hey Buffster, making Mr.Pointy pancakes?” Xander sand at the kitchen table which he loved. It was hand carved out of cherry wood.
“I didn't was circle pancakes this morning. They are so last year.” Buffy shrugged before filling up a paper plate with a giant pile of pancakes. “Here ya are. The syrup is in the microwave.”
Xander stood up and hobbled to the microwave, grabbed the torso of the woman shaped bottle before finally being able to sit back down. Soon his Mr.Pointy pancakes were drowned and he was stuffing his face. A glass of orange juice had appeared by his plate in the mean time, adding the his breakfast happiness.
After he was finished, he thanked his chef and went to sit on the couch. The pile of books that greeted him made him want to go back into the much more sunny kitchen.
“Glaring at them won't make them go away.” Willow's voice came, startling the one eyed man out of his stupor.
“Hey Wils?” Xander said suddenly, his eyes still fixed on the book in front of him.
“Yeah?” Willow sat next to her best friend.
“Do you remember what Caleb called me?”
“Caleb? The crazy priest?” Willow looked at him with a funny look.
“Well not clearly.” Willow frowned in thought.
“He called me the One Who Sees.”
“Yeah, so what about it?” willow asked.
“Well the visitors yesterday.”
“The ones coming back today?”
“Yeah, well I saw one of their auras. But it was really colorful, I mean I sometimes get glimpses of green from Buffy or white from you. But I could see hers like it was really there.”
“Well, Tara used to tell me that aura's reflected the soul and the power people had, and what was held over them.”
“So like Tara could see a curse on someone?”
“She never told me, but yeah I assume she could.”
“So you see auras?”
“Yeah, and shadowy figures of beasts. That is a really creepy thing to see.” Xander shook himself.
“I bet. Now about this pile of books.” Willow smiled innocently.
“But Wils, I'm wounded!”
“Not buts mister!”
So Xander picked up a book and began to read silently, a pout on his lips.
When lunch had passed, Xander knew that the should people would be coming soon. However when the sun sank he had a bad feeling that they were bringing some fanged friends along with them. Willow said that they would be upstairs if he needed them. So the two girls had retreated up into a bedroom to watch some chick flicks. He could handle this, he was a grown Xan-man. However knowing that all the people could out man him well he wasn't that confident in his skills.
Finally a knock sounded and Xander shuffled to the door. He swung it open and there stood Micah, Anita and two vampires. Great, just freaking peachy.
“Are you going to invite us in?” Said Anita politely.
Xander stepped to the side opening the door wider.
“You know they can't come in without you inviting them, right.” Anita said as if she were talking to a child.
“I know.” Xander looked at her coldly. “didn't I say I grew up on the Hellmouth.”
“So you're not going to invite them in?” This was from Micah.
“No.” Xander looked silently at the two non-vampires.
Anita walked through the thresh hold and grinned. “Since you invited me in Jean-Claude can come through too,. I'm his human servant.”
“I never invited you.” Xander said, leaving the main door open and the screen door the only thing between the vampires and the thresh hold. This caused Anita to press her lips together. She had been out smarted by a kid, and it irritated her.
“Fine.” She grumbled.
“So this help you said you'd give?” Xander crossed his arms.
“Well we're going to help you through the change and then maybe you'll join our pard.” Micah said happily.
“Sorry, but I'm leaving soon. Got other things to do you know.” Xander shook his head.
“You'll have to join a pard, or you'll get in trouble.” Anita said, in a threat like tone.
“I doubt that.” Xander said with a sigh. “See look I listened to you, now you can go.” Xander shooed them away.
“You need to sit down and understand the rules!” Anita snapped, her power lashing out.
Power bubbled up in Xander the second time in two days, and he just internally sighed and handed the reins over to the entity in his body.
“Tisk tisk, don't threaten one you know nothing about.” Xander's voice had gotten feminine and gravelly. “I am more powerful than you could fathom.”
Anita hand pulled her gun, and had it level at Xander's chest. Xander now side stepped, Anita following him. The grin spread on Xander's face was unnatural as Micah began to try to control the situation.
“Ma Petite.” said the dark hair vampire from behind the screen door.
“Anita.” said Micah “Put the gun down.”
“No, he’s not natural.” she said her eyes a little too wide.
“And you are little Necromancer?” Xander stated back coolly, his grin stretching further.
Suddenly Anita was taken down but a blond blur. Buffy had the gun in one hand and Anita in the other. Micah made a move to jump on Buffy but was stopped when Willow’s magic washed through the room. Willow was by Xander’s side in an instant, feeling the brush of his power she did a low bow. Which Xander returned gracefully.
“Regina, I am a follower of Gaia. I beseech you to let their foolishness go. They did not know whom they were crossing.” Willow said
“This is the only time I will let them cross me and Meus parvulus.” with that the green faded from Xander’s eye and Willow caught him as he began to fall. Sitting his in his chair she stood, muscles tense.
“What right do you fools have to threaten Xander.” Willow whipped around her black eyes staring a Anita.
“We are the leaders of the local Were-leopards.” Micah said in a business like tone.
“You have no fucking reason to be here, Xander knows of the politics within packs and pards.” Buffy snapped “But we are leaving soon, so why should you care.” Buffy almost tossed Anita at Micah.
“Because we want to help. But he didn’t even let us explain.” Anita snapped, she was still trying to act tough.
“So that gave you the right to bust down the door and come in guns blazing.” Willow glared.
“We didn’t come in guns blazing He did that creepy metaphysical shit .” Anita snapped back.
“He didn’t. The Hyena Primal that has had residence in him did. She was the first hyena spirit. She’s a Goddess! The one who created Were-Hyenas and normal Hyenas alike!” Buffy gave Willow a look. “I felt her in him about two years before the Hellmouth was closed, but she didn’t wake up so I though we were in the clear. I didn’t think that he would go all growly on us one day. Though it’s way cooler then being puppy chow and” Willow smiled “sorry rambled off.”
“Tell us who you are and why my spidey senses are going hay wire around you people.” Buffy frowned at the two intruders.
“Why the fuck did you call me Anita?” came a growl and everyone turned around. “He’s here you didn’t need me.” the brown haired man jabbed his finger at the dark haired Vampire. The man's eyes took in the situation, however he eyed Xander in interest.
“Richard, I’m sorry, it’s just the situation was getting out of control.” Anita said shrugging slightly.
“That was your fault, never threaten somebody you don’t know. And never underestimate Xander.” Willow huffed. Then her brow raised in happiness. “You’re Oz’s Ulfric.” she smiled tilting her head.
Then there was silence.