XANDER HARRIS: THE IRON TAU'RI
Disclaimers: Nothing belongs to me other than this insane idea I have that just won’t let go. Iron Man belongs to Marvel, Stargate SG1 belongs to Paramount. Buffy belongs to Joss.
Summary: Xander goes as one of his favorite marvel comic characters, but gets more than he's bargained for.
"Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Knight?"
To say that Xander was annoyed, was a gross understatement. To think the day began with lots of nice possibilities that were shot down the moment he entered school. He blamed it on the Hellmouth.
And that was before he saw Cordelia Chase in class.
It took all he had not to scream and pull out his hair at the way Cordelia replied to the history teacher in regards to the anecdote on George Washington and his infamous apple tree.
He glared at the back of her head, wondering if she had been born a dysfunctional blond underneath her brunette tress. She must be doing this on purpose to get a reaction from everybody, he thought. That’s the only possible answer, as he refused to believe that anyone could be that obtuse - or bent. He sighed in relief when the bell signalled the end to another dismal day and wasted no time from getting as much distance between himself and the reigning queen of Sunnydale High as he could.
Bad enough that his overdeveloped libido from the merging left him more than wanting to ogle the supposedly insane brunette, but he almost had the same reaction to any attractive female in range. The only thing that kept him from doing something that would have his head handed to him on a silver platter was the simple fact that everyone around him were jailbait. Unless of course it was Jenny Calendar.
Thank God for small favors, he thought.
“Wimp,” Was the reply from the Tony Stark collective running the peanut gallery in his head.
He sighed, checked his watch and started walking back to his warehouse only to stop when he saw who waiting for him near the school entrance.
Buffy and Willow.
“Er, hello ladies!” he said and tried to sound nonchalant, unfortunately he twitched when someone at the back of his mental mind-scape wolf-whistled.
Make that all of them, he groaned.
Both girls shared a glance and smiled back at the confused young man.
“Xander,” they began. “Where have you been these past few days?”
“Oh no,” Xander said as he moved to get clear. “You two don’t play the coy act on me. As for what I’ve been up to, I’ve been busy trying to catch up on school since it slacked a lot after I started on the slayage with you guys.”
Buffy frowned, while that was true, Xander never usually avoided them on purpose. But after the Halloween incident, they had been seeing less and less of each other. And while she was glad that one of her friends tried to keep to the safe side of the fight, she still felt that she had to worry.
In spite of his admittance that nothing much happened to him during his possession, she still had doubts.
“Are you sure you’re okay?” Buffy asked, and then she noticed how his clothes no longer hung awkwardly around his frame like it did before. And even though his choice of clothing still sported the Hawaiian motif, the prints weren’t as loud as they had been before. The ones he habitually wore in the past had almost blinded even someone with Slayer abilities.
“Nice shirt by the way.” She said.
“Uh thanks.” Xander said in reply and fidgeted a little as his other best friend had yet to say anything. He looked into her face and blinked as he saw that she almost had literal heart-shapes in her eyes. He gulped and started to back away from the redhead when he started to notice she was almost close to taste.
“Well,” he said backing away from the redhead with caution, wondering why he thought of her like a cat pouncing all of the sudden. In desperation, his mind tried to grab on to one excuse. “I really have to run, got myself a part time job to go to, too.”
“Really?” both girls gasped in surprise.
“What sort of job would hire a high school student?” Willow asked as she spoke for the first time since both girls had cornered their only male friend below thirty.
“Oh nothing much,” Xander said and tried to play it down. “He bought one of the warehouses closest to here to start up a company for research and development and needed a go-fer for stuff he normally doesn’t have to bother with.”
“That’s nice, Xand.” Buffy smiled, “Is he treating you ok? Is the pay ok? And is there an opening for more? And what’s your boss’s name?”
“Uh well, the pay is decent.” Xander hedged at the slayer’s interrogation and started to lie his ass off. “He’s usually out of town on country-hopping trips, so I’m more or less the caretaker of the place. His name is Jarvis, and no I don’t think he’s hiring anyone right now until he gets set up. And yes, I have seen him in daylight and eating human food.” The last one was said for Buffy’s benefit in regards to her unspoken profession as a Slayer.
“All right girls,” he said and made a show of looking at his Mickey Mouse watch. “Have to go, bye!”
Then he moved forwards, and kissed each girl on the cheek. Xander was mortified when he realized that the kiss was dangerously close to their lips. He blushed beet red, and bolted. Too bad he wasn't able to outrun the series of guffaws that echoed in his mind-scape all the way home.
He felt that he needed a very stiff drink.
Ack, NO! -- A cold shower, definitely needed a cold shower, and then get to working on some experiments while loud rock music blasted his eardrums off his skull.
But with NO alcoholic beverage involved.
I’m doomed, he thought as the peanut gallery in the back of his head laughed louder while they clinked imaginary champagne glasses and downed them in one gulp.
After he finally recovered from his recent lapse of sanity, he had ZZ-Top playing in the background and he tinkered with one of his more recent electronic additions in the warehouse. He had taken apart some old projectors and some infrared lasers and then reassembled them to point from top to bottom facing each other inside a large cage that suspended the whole contraption. It was wide enough for him to walk through. He also made sure to weld the whole prototype cage so it won’t fall on top of him.
Once he was satisfied that the whole thing was sturdy, he connected the main cables to the Cray unit and flicked on the switch inside the cage. A series of lights winked on and the whole array bathed him in illumination the moment he stepped in and donned some tight fitting gloves that had silver lining on the end of each digits.
“All right,” Xander said in triumph. “Jarvis, initiate grid processing on my mark, power up for twenty five percent.”
“Initiating.” The A.I. intoned, the infrared lasers changed spectrum as the projectors above and below him formed solid lights that surrounded him briefly before dimming to an acceptable level so as not to destroy regular human level eyesight.
“Mark!” he said, and watched in glee as a holographic flat monitor and transparent keyboard appeared and floated before him. He began typing on the holographic keypad and was more than pleased to see that they registered as solid when the gloves came in contact.
“Up the power to fifty percent.” Xander called out as he took off the gloves and started testing the holographic surface for actual skin contact. Pleased to note that they were solid as the A.I. complied, he ran a normal Windows type browser and surfed the web when all the sudden one of the projectors above his head popped. And then the power blew. The warehouse was plunged into darkness when the last of the main fuses died. Two seconds later, the backups he installed kicked in .
“Well shit,” the young genius groaned. He took the whole system off the Cray in disgust until he was able to come up with a better power source. “There goes my electricity bill.”
Once he got the power back to normal; he straddled the chair in front of the machine that was doing the ZPE and Arc equations and simulations to check up on its progress. He was slightly mollified that at least the system was making good in its assigned task.
From the readouts, Arc technology is indeed feasible with the use of current tech. The size of the reactor concerned him a bit, while not overly large, it was still big enough to be the size of a family van.
He picked through the list of possible places to acquire said materials the machine had found and was pleased to note that some of them were in the immediate area. One of them was actually in the former CRD compound while the others can be bought from various sources.
The main part however was inside the Sunnydale Military depot.
He frowned again as he wondered why the depot showed the components of a disassembled tactical warhead hidden amongst its manifest. Maybe somebody made an error of gross proportions or this was intentional, he didn’t want to know, but the fact it was there worried him more than making the reactor. If SHIELD was around in this reality, he would have thought that this would be their last ditch effort in case the Hellmouth would open.
If someone higher up does have an idea about the goings on in Sunnydale, then why haven’t they sent in some help? The components would be useless to them later on though, he needed those parts. He started ordering the rest of the materials that were easily available with his stock earnings while he would leave the one inside the depot for last.
With that out of the way, he dismantled parts of the holo-projector he was working on and started working on a stealth generator.
One way or another, he needed those parts, so he would have to lift them off the base itself.
Besides, it’s not like he could steal some radioactive isotopes from broke Libyans running across the border while trying to help them enact vengeance against the authorities, now could he? He had more class than that.
Though he shuddered to think what would have happened if had went out as Doc Brown on Halloween. He touched his full head of hair and shuddered again. He really didn't want to spend the rest of his life with hair that looked like he'd been electrocuted fifty ways from Sunday.
A blurred, barely discernable form ghosted past the dozing sentry guarding the depot gates later that night, stopping only to carefully wedge itself through the slightly ajar gate and headed for building it wanted. With agonizing slowness, it opened the door and let itself in and locked the door once it was fully inside.
Coming out of stealth was a bizarrely garbed Alexander Harris dressed in a black tight-fitting scuba wetsuit, wearing a harness made out of projectors and electronic jammers. It would have looked ridiculous to anyone that saw him if not for the fact that the damned thing worked. On his back was a large knapsack for this mission. He took off the harness that held the stealth generator for the duration and set it aside. He retrieved a copy of the room map from the knapsack's left side pocket, along with the manifest for said depot that he had hacked into and began rooting through the crates for the parts he needed with the utmost care as to not make a sound.
As he was almost finished rooting through the last crate which held the micro-circuit board for the guidance system, he caught something peeking out from below the crate packing material. Upon closer inspection, he noticed it had an odd purplish color. After stuffing the board into one of the knapsack’s protected pockets, he leaned in and brought the object of his curiosity out.
It was slightly bulky in appearance and it resembled a squished letter Z or S from the side. Examining the object, he noted a button on the side and depressed it, and nearly dropped it as it became live and took the position of a standard letter Z configuration.
The engineer in him immediately recognized a weapon when he saw one; however he also noted the design was nothing close to what a human would have in mind. Glancing back into the crate, he saw a few of them in there and also noted that a few of them had been taken apart and placed into separate containers. His curiosity getting the better of him at the moment, he lifted a couple of them for his own testing and stuffed them into the knapsack.
Since these babies weren’t even included in the manifest at all, he knew without a doubt that they would be hush-hush about it missing a few.
Once he was done with his illegal shopping spree, he made sure to make everything look back the way it was before he even stepped foot in the room. That done, he donned the harness again and activated his bulky as hell stealth camouflage then made his way out of the depot with exaggerated caution.
It wasn’t until the next day when he came back from school that he found out that the strange weapon he had acquired as a bonus from the depot was never made by human hands after hours of analyzing and testing it.
In fact, it was never manufactured on Earth.
The shock was enough to make him forget all about what that disassembled warhead was doing in Sunnydale in the first place.
-- To Be Continued --
A/N: I hate plot bunnies that won't leave me alone until they've had their nasty way with me... I mean, c'mon.... a guy's gotta get some sleep around here. Thank you all for the kind reviews!
-- also to KingOfCretins: I hope my reply will help alleviate your concerns as to where this one is going....
.... also no offense to real Libyans reading this.....
Until next time all......