AN: This is a story that I have had in my head for a while. We have all read Halloween stories in which Xander or the other get powers or knowledge, they change their lives or fall in love with their soul mate or even turn evil, and all that other bullcrap.
Well, this is not one of those. If someone could get the benefits of a costume then why not the drawbacks? That's where this is going. If your looking for a Hero!Xander or Evil!Xander or Wise!Xander, even Powerful!Xander and Romantic!Xander then you are shit out of luck. This will not be one of them.
Disclaimer: All fictional characters belong to their proper owners and any real people or places in these story will be used fictionally or in a fictional manner. I am not making any money or currency with this story. This is going to be the only disclaimer in the story so read it now.
Xander dropped the test results that he was holding, letting the piece of paper fall to the floor. He'd guessed what the results would say, even expected it, but nothing prepares you for the cold, hard evidence that you were dying. Funny, he'd always thought that he'd live forever. Not literally, of course, but dying had always seemed a far off possibility, even in moments of mortal danger.
Xander sank down to the floor and felt tears gather in his eyes, his heart aching. The coughs were what had clued him in to the disease and waking up in the middle of the night drenched in sweat hadn't filled him with confidence either. It was that damn costume's fault, he knew that it was stupid to think that it had something to do with his current predicament, but it was too coincidental.
Three months ago he had dressed as his childhood hero, Doctor John Holliday. He'd been fascinated by the man since he could remember and after seeing the movie Tombstone, even more so. So, when had found a Doc Holliday costume at Ethan Rayne's costume shop, he had jumped at the chance and had taken a sizable chunk of his road trip funds just to by it. It had been very expensive as it was one of the props from Tombstone or so Ethan told him.
After the incident of Halloween, he'd begun to notice irregularities in his personality, for example he had just used the word 'irregularities'. When Larry used to bully him Xander used to flinch or just shut up and took the humiliation, but after Halloween when Larry made fun of him, Xander would taunt him back with a polite and friendly manner. Sometimes, when he was talking about something his voice would taken on an educated southern accent.
The pluses were that he could speak Latin fluently and read it just as well, he could play the piano, his dress sense had improved to the point that he wore button ups that were actually buttoned and slacks of different colors, and he knew all sorts of things about poker, including how to cheat. The poker thing had been very handy at getting information from the local demons, though he still couldn't believe that they played poker with kittens.
For some things he had to work for them. Dentistry had changed in the last hundred years and Xander didn't remember much of Doc's knowledge on the subject, but he had felt compelled to study it. If there was one thing he's learned from his Halloween experience then it was that knowledge of dentistry can be a very handy handy skill to have. As for drawing a gun and shooting, Xander had to practice that for hours everyday and three months later he still wasn't as fast as Doc Holliday had been.
Then there were the exercises for keeping his fingers nimble when he wasn't practicing drawing a gun. One of these was rolling a coin between his fingers or just twirling a pencil. It was harder than it sounded. He had loved feeling the fearlessness of Doc Holiday so much that he had forgotten what had caused that feeling. That Doc Holliday had wanted to die, he had wanted someone to shoot him but hadn't been willing to go down without a fight. If someone had wanted to kill Doc, then they were going to have to earn it. He hadn't wanted to suffer a slow death by Tuberculosis.
He had thought that's all there was to the costume, the skills, but it wasn't. Now, he had contracted the same disease that had brought down the legendary Doctor John Holliday. Xander didn't want to die, he always thought that one of the vampires or demons would put him down or the less likely chance that he would retire, but now there was no chance of retiring. He was either going to die due to the demons or due to TB. He wasn't sure which way he'd rather go.
But one thing was sure, Xander Harris was NOT going down without a fight and he'd take as many of the nasties as he could with him.
Xander stood up and grabbed the holster from the costume and strapped it on, grabbing the silver Revolver that he had bought and loaded it. He grabbed the long coat and the hat and put them on, and looked into the mirror.
He wasn't Doc Holliday, but he did look intimidating. He stopped suddenly as a thought came to him. How would Buffy and Willow react to the news of his illness? They'd probably try to lock him up in a hospital or keep him out of the fighting. He wouldn't tell them, they didn't need that sort of bad news on top of Angel going psycho. And if they found out and tried to keep him from fighting?
Xander grabbed a shotgun and walked out the door. "Then they can go to hell."
END OF CHAPTER
AN: Well what do you think? Review and tell me.