Xander the Mage: The Aftermath
A/N: This is an explanation of the game Magic: the Gathering and Xander’s first foray’s into land-casting.
Xander had been so tired that he had fallen asleep in his costume. He awoke and peeled the white robes off of him and started for the door. He may as well try and evade his parents after cooking breakfast for them. He went upstairs and began cooking when he saw his father in a drunken haze slap his mother. Tony went in for another strike and the bottle in his hand shattered against an invisible barrier, he flew against the wall in a spread-eagle pose as thick iron manacles sprouted from the wall. They clamped around his arms and he began swearing at Jessica. Xander reached out to his mother and touched the hand print on her cheek; she glowed white and the mark was gone. Xander smelled smoke and frantically batted at the blaze that was starting. He looked around and didn’t see his mother. He saw her coming through the door with a thick leather-bound tome.
“Xander, come here.” She patted the seat next to her and opened the sun embossed tome.
“What is it?” Xander asks his strangely sober mother.
“This is the Tome of Urza, the book that will explain your new powers. You’ve been using them subconsciously since you were born. Remember that time you wanted a dog?
Remember that no one fought you in grade school? Remember when you saved that little bird? All of those are manifestations of our birthright. We are mages, however you’re a little different than the witches you read about or see. We use the land to power our spells; unfortunately there is a wizard using Black magic to reshape the land to channel his power better. We use the power of the white mana that is produced by the gently rolling prairies, farmland and cities where life is civilized. Unfortunately, at this time we must hide from the minions of the Necromancer-General, Lim-Dūl. This land has choked off my magic; so this Tome will be your only teacher. Keep the Tome safe from the servant of darkness Xander, in it is contained both the legacy of White Magi and the power to destroy us.”
Xander was awe-struck; he was a mage and that was what helped him bring the Buffster back. Tony was still raging at Jessica, his mother put a hand on his arm and Xander dismissed the chains. Tony fell to the ground; he picked himself up and grabbed a bottle of beer and guzzled it. The Zeppo shook his head, grabbed the Tome and ran to the library hoping Giles in his Britishness would know what to do.
Giles was indeed in the library; organizing his precious card file. Just as he closed the U-V drawer Xander burst in with a concerned look on his face. Giles inwardly smiled at his surrogate son; unfortunately he wasn’t his so he could never pass on the magic of Ertai.
Giles took off his spectacles and polished them as he gathered words to speak.
“Giles, I need some help!” Xander yelled out of breath. Immediately his Ripperish protectiveness came out.
“What is it Xander?” Giles asked concerned.
“I just talked to my mother and found out I’m a mage!” Xander almost yelled the last word.
Giles let out a breath he never knew he was holding, at least he wasn’t complaining about the hyena. That was a hard magic, suppressing one of nature’s creatures. Xander pulled forth the Tome of Urza and Giles went into his office and brought out the Tome of Ertai.
“G-man; you’re a mage?” Xander queried as his jaw met the library floor.
“Stop that infernal nickname; of course I’m a mage. Did you think that I could guide Buffy to the right prophecies otherwise?” Giles said as he set down the dust-covered leather bound volume.
“How many more magi are there here, Giles?” Xander asked.
“Few are left since the Planeswalker wars, during the days shortly following the Great Exile of the demons this was a battleground in the War many died in that conflict. Though there are ones of each of the five colors here; they are few because only the Black Ones can harness a Hellmouth.”
Giles walked up to Xander and clasped his shoulder.
“Because of the ancient pact between the Green and White I can teach you some of your abilities; although the Tome of Urza shall teach you much more. Now for the first lessons that you need to learn.”
Xander and Giles sat in the library for hours, going over the basics of land-casting, by the end of the day Xander was able to draw upon the mana from the land to summon forth creatures such as the flying Beacon Hawk and the Steadfast Guards. He had mastered the use of the white mana enough to summon the Manacles of Dominaria, to salve wounds with a thought and feel other magi.
Eventually, Giles called a stop to the session; citing the strain of using energy that seldom was used. Xander headed home under the watchful eye of the Guards. When he rounded the corner his home was in flames.
With nary a thought Xander focused and the glowing Manacles of Dominaria manifested in the air. Unfortunately, they disappeared in a flash of light when they were subjected to the fire. Then Xander began running towards the fire. When he got there he found the flames far too hot to proceed any further. What he saw amid the flames made his blood boil. In the center of the ruins of his home stood a towering green creature
The creature saw him and started advancing toward him; the young mage cast everything possible at the monstrosity but its hide reflected even the Manacles. The creature lashed out at him; only to be met by the iron of the Guard’s weapons. It seemed the creature was invulnerable; when a huge elephant-like creature charged it and sent it flying over the skyline where it imploded. The creature looked at Xander and the disappeared in a puff of flame. Ten feet away stood Willow; adorned in red robes with a Tome identical to that of Urza’s except for a flame embossed on the cover.