A good morning and a some conversation.
Disclaimer: See 1st chapter. I own none of them and don't make any money off this
Authors Note: Religious imagery. If you don't recognise the centurion, google “Spear of Longinus” or “Holy Lance”. If you don't recognise The Carpenter he's the guy who was stuck with the spear. Also the situation Xander is in is confusing because as Gaius states, the home of deities is by definition not going to make sense to a mortal.
Xander woke up aching all over, thirsty and hungry. On the plus side he was lying on silk sheets with a warm breeze blowing tropical sea air over him and a naked woman lying next to him. Looking past her he could see open french windows leading to a balcony that jutted out into a lagoon with surf breaking over a barrier reef in the distance. The right hand side of the reef ended in a small island with palm trees growing on it.
The woman, no, female demon lying next to him had her head propped up on her hand as she studied him with a smile on her face. To call it a nice face attached to a nice body would be like calling the surface of the sun mildly warm. She had clearly been watching him, waiting for him to wake.
“Good to see you awake finally.” She stated. “Go take a shower and I'll call for breakfast. We can eat on the balcony.”
The youngest of the Sunnydale Harris's got slowly out of bed and staggered off toward the door the demoness, he vaguely remembered her being called E something, had pointed to. The bathroom itself could only be described as decadent. The bath was big enough for two and the hot tub for four or five. The towels were huge, thick, fluffy and by the time he re-entered the bedroom wearing one around his waist – having woken up naked it was all there was to wear – he was feeling considerably more like his usual self.
Breakfast was served on a wooden table with a large shade cloth over it to avoid them being broiled in the tropical sun. There was pretty much everything he liked to eat in the morning – or fantasized about eating for breakfast if his mother bought what he wanted to eat for breakfast – plus some other stuff he'd never tried before.
“Xander, in case you don't remember my name is Elisha and I am one of Satan's personal assistants.” The demoness said. She was glistening with water from a quick dip in the lagoon and lying on her towel rather than wearing it. She was also positioned so that ALL of her assets were on display. “And no, you are not going to be offered a deal by Satan.”
“Ah, well, why not?” Xander was not up to his usual goofiness, not after what had been done to him the day before.
“Bad press.” She responded, smiling at him as he spoke. She was glad he was sufficiently recovered from his ordeal to respond to her provocative positioning with a massive erection he was trying to hide under the towel. “Deal with the Devil became such a cliche for being cheated that people either spent all their time trying to work out what the trick was or else they were planning to go back on the deal from the word go, which made them useless.”
“That sounds just so monumentally stupid that even my parents would think twice about it.” The male Scooby responded as he sipped the best cup of coffee he'd ever drank.
“You'd be amazed.” She responded. “In any case you are not being offered a deal, you are simply being provided with a resource with which you will be able to prevent much pain and suffering on Earth before being returned there. You can just let all those people be tortured, raped and murdered if you really want to.”
“Hey I may just be the dough nut fetcher but I'd never do that!” Xander stated as he stood up angrily. Which had the effect of causing his towel to fall off exposing his raging boner. He tried to maintain a train of thought while bending down to recover his towel and dignity. It was a losing struggle.
“Please Alexander I'm not suggesting you would abandon people like that. Quite the opposite in fact,we are relying on you not to.” Elisha stated. “Oh and please don't cover yourself again I'm enjoying the view far too much.”
“Ah.” The scooby responded, while thinking 'way to go man, demon magnet Xander strikes again'.
“We have a very complete dossier on you. We know you better than you do which is why you are being prepared here rather than just returned to Earth.” The demoness got up and walked towards him as she spoke. “But we will discuss that later because right now I have a desperate need to fuck your brains out.”
Xander followed the man who had been sent to get him and felt bewildered. That apparently was to be expected.
“Don't think about it too much, we're in the realm of the gods it's not supposed to be understandable to humans.” The individual sent to fetch him had said after noticing how confused he was from walking out of what appeared to be a tropical resort through a door into Satan's 19th Century English Gentleman's Club style office complex and out into an olive grove overlooking a middle eastern looking village.
They walked into a wooden workshop and up to a tall man with a beard and long hair who was using a wood lathe. When The Carpenter turned to face them Xander's escort gave him a curious type of salute, one clenched fist held to the chest and then struck out similar to the Hitler salute.
“Centurion Longinus reports with Alexander Harris Sir!”
“Thank you Gaius, I will call for you when he needs to go back.” The speaker was tanned, weatherbeaten and fit looking as someone who lives and works largely outdoors in Galilee will tend to be. The Carpenter poured some wine from a goatskin into a wooden cup and handed it to the male Scooby. “Have some wine, you will feel better honestly.”
Harris looked into the cup for a second and then took a sip, it was good and he did indeed feel instantly better. Normally drinking booze from the only cup in view is something he would avoid, given his families drinking habits and the health issues of sharing cups. But given the company he was in and the identity of the drinking vessel he had few doubts.
“The Powers That Be are officially unemployed as a result of your action yesterday and their whole operation shut down.” The Carpenter said. “You, a good man, wound up in hell because an obviously risky plan went wrong. That is totally unacceptable.”
“Good.” Xander said. He might have added '...and I hope they rot in hell' but under the circumstances it might sound like a demand.
“Xander I want you to do something for me.”
“Uh, ok.” What was he going to do, say NO?
“I want you to be my Earthly representative for the joint operation Lucifer has proposed.” The Carpenter said as he turned to finish off the piece in the lathe. He continued to speak as he took it out of the clamps holding it in place. It was a wooden cup identical to the one the human was holding. “The demon situation on Earth is far worse than it should be thanks to The Powers that Used to Be's Machiavellian plotting and both sides have an interest in returning at least most of them to the lower realms. Elisha will be Lucifer's representative and will handle the paperwork and database management.”
“Database management?” The Scooby asked. “Paperwork? Hell has bureaucracy?”
“Of course Hell has government bureaucracy, who do you think invented it?” The Carpenter said. “On the other hand it means none of the cryptic prophecies you are used to. You will be getting files listing details like names, addresses, weaknesses and the names and contact details of your targets known deadly enemies. In a lot of cases all you will have to do is make a phone call.”
Xander thought for a moment. It was a lot to take in and while it sounded perfect that was the problem, it sounded too perfect.
“I know why I want to take the offer but what does Elisha get out of it?”
“She gets to not work in Hell anymore for one thing, I mean would someone who LIKED being in hell build that pocket dimension you spent the morning in?” Was the response. “She's a Slutha demon, they're very sensual, decadent beings who crave the good things in life. That villa will be your home base by the way, her office is there and it means she won't ever have to go back to Hell if you agree to take on the task I have set you.”
The Scooby thought for a moment before responding.
“This sounds perfect but can I, um...”
“Take some time to think about it?” The Carpenter asked. “Of course you can, I realise this is overwhelming for you. I will make as much time for you to get used to the idea as you need.”
“You'll clear your schedule for me?”
“No, I will make the time.” He responded. “It's one of the things I do. Take as long as you want to think, train, get used to living with Elisha, and I will return you to your friends ten minutes after you left them.”
Xander took another sip of wine, emptying the cup and tried to hand it back.
“No, I'm giving it to you, just leave it in Elisha's home and whenever you want it it will come to you already full. Just don't let Elisha drink out of it.”
“A demon who drinks from The Grail?” He responded. “Think about it.”
For someone who had been doubtful of the existence of god only days ago it had been an amazing few days. Xander needed time to get everything straight in his head, this was not an instant crisis where he would just jump in and trust his instincts. He needed to be sure about this.
“Oh Xander one thing.”
The unusually subdued Scooby looked up from the grail he had been staring into and turned to the other being.
“Elisha has strong passions and partnering with her requires you to satisfy them, particularly her sexual needs.” The Carpenter said. “This is a mission requirement and won't count against you when you are judged. I wanted to make that clear, and we will talk again.”