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Chaos Raynes

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This story is No. 11 in the series "Tales of the LSH (Legion of Sunnydale Heroes)". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Halloween in Sunnydale ends up being a lot more chaotic than even Ethan intended.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Multiple Crossings > GeneralGreywizardFR18415,41503022,50131 Oct 0831 Oct 13No

Chapter One

Disclaimer: They all belong to Crack-Head Joss and ME, James H. Schmitz, DC or Marvel Comics, except for Alex Scoren and Siobhan Hanley, who belong to me.

Time Frame: Begins during Season Two, episode eighteen, 'Halloween.' After that, it goes seriously AU.

Spoilers: None intended, but if you don’t know what happened up to this point, why are you reading this story?

Character Bashing: Zip. Nada. None.

Feedback: Of course!

Archiving: Talk to me first, please.

Author’s Note 1: This is unbeta'd, so any mistakes are solely mine.

Author’s Note 2: As usual, "word" indicates speech, :: word :: indicates mental communication and { word } indicates a character's thoughts.

Author's Note 3: This is another story I've had lying around my hard drive for a while that, since it's that time of year, my muse has suddenly decided she wants to finish up, so you should be seeing the rest of it in the very near future.

~~~

“There is nothing that gives more assurance than a mask.” – Colette

“Where there is no imagination, there is no horror.” – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

~~~

Dimension Kinari Minor Mark Four One Two

Sunnydale High School
October 30, 1997


Larry Blaisdell laughed contemptuously as Xander Harris reacted to his somewhat derogatory comments about Buffy's reputation among the jocks by grabbing hold of his shirt and trying to yank him forward, in a futile attempt to intimidate him. After knocking away the smaller teen's hands, he grabbed Xander with his right hand, balled his left hand into a fist and started to throw a punch into the other's face. A momentary expression of astonished disbelief crossed his own face, though, when his intended victim swayed to the side to avoid the blow, then drove his own left palm into the jock’s solar plexus in retaliation, momentarily paralyzing his ability to breath.

Xander smiled ferally as his own right fist then came up and hooked into the fullback's jaw, returning the blow and driving his opponent backwards to crash onto one of the lunch tables typically occupied by members of the football team and cheerleaders, upsetting it amid a chorus of outraged, indignant and astonished yells and shrieks. To the astonishment of the entire cafeteria, the larger youth slumped to the cafeteria floor, unconscious.

"Xander! What did you just do?" Willow asked in an incredulous voice as she and Buffy stared in disbelief at their friend.

"I think I just got moved onto the ‘people who shouldn't be messed with’ list I've been trying to get on since grade school," the brunet smiled while absently rubbing his knuckles.

Ignoring the surprised and disbelieving questions his friends were throwing his way, Xander picked up his lunch and walked away in search of a quieter spot to eat, grinning with satisfaction as he considered the accomplishment he’d just achieved.

{ Hmm. Seems like I might actually have talents I never realized I had before, } he thought to himself as he settled down under the elm tree on the far side of the school quad. { Assuming that we all make it through school and graduate, I could definitely end up being a lot more than just some generic soldier like I planned on dressing as tonight. }

{ Of course, what would be even cooler is if I could be someone like that Guardian character that Project Cadmus created or maybe that Gaven guy in Schmitz's 'End of the Line' story } he thought to himself with a wry grin. { Now *he* was one really tough customer, what with all the training and skills he had – not to mention all the genetic enhancements and other stuff. I bet every government in the world wishes they could produce people like that. }

{ Man, just imagine what I could do if I was someone like him! }

~~~

"You know, Will, Xander told me about how you always go out as a ghost each year, so I was thinking that maybe you could think about maybe upgrading your ghost outfit this year from the sheet he said you normally use," Buffy offered a relatively subtle (for her) alternative to the redhead’s typical costume as the two friends headed for algebra class after lunch.

"Right before I found the gown I’m wearing, I saw this really terrific outfit that I think would look great on you," she said. "I think you’d really surprise Xander if you wore it, since it’s a character from one of those comics he’s always reading,"

"You could just think of it as not just dragging your costume idea out of the stuffy and traditional old past, but improving it and actually forcing it to adapt to future expectations!"

"And a major bonus would be that it would definitely remind him that you’re a girl, and not just the best friend he’s known since kindergarten," she grinned encouragingly at her friend, drawing a somewhat embarrassed but pleased grin from the other girl at that revelation.

"Really?" Willow asked hesitantly, intrigued by the idea, while the not-at-all unwelcome suggestion that Xander might finally realize she was female made her blush slightly. "Who or what exactly is this idea you’ve got, Buffy?"

"Well, remember last week, when Xand was comparing me with that girl superhero he said got superstrong, but only at night, and then he got to talking about some of the other characters she hung around with…"

~~~

As he made his way to the algebra class he shared with Buffy and Willow after lunch, Xander grinned at the various conversations he could hear about the various costumes his classmates planned on wearing.

"I’m telling you, guys, anyone can dress up as a superhero, but personally I think it’s the supervillains the ladies really go for, what with the badass, bad boy image they’ve got going for them," Gage Petronzi was confidently declaring to several of his fellow swim team jocks as they discussed the costumes they were planning on wearing to the party Harmony was hosting that evening following the students’ escorting the school children.

"And I'm gonna be one of the baddest supervillains ever! I got my costume at that new shop that just opened down on Elm, and it's got the best prices on costumes in town. You guys should go check it out.

"You won't believe the deals you can get there!"

***

"Jono, this is gonna be the greatest Halloween ever! I found the greatest, most absolutely perfect costume shop, and it’s got the best costume selection you could ever hope to see! They’ve even got a Dr. Strange costume that’s even better than the one you were looking at in the online catalogue last year!" Andrew Wells’ voice echoed down the hallway as he told his friend of the wonders he’d found at the new costume store that had just opened.

"Sounds good to me, man," Jonathan agreed enthusiastically. "Are you still planning on going as Blue Devil? Because that would be awesome!"

"Nope, my costume’s going to be even better than that!" Andrew shook his head even as a wide smile split his face. "I was talking to the owner of the shop – he said his name is Ethan – about that first idea I had considered for a costume that I told you about, and the problems I was having making it work properly and he told me he knew a way to make the whole thing with the flames around the head work without really having to worry about burning anything, because a friend of his was a special effects artist in L.A.

"And he not only said he liked my idea so much that he’d put together a helmet that would make it seem like my head really was on fire, but he promised to have it ready for me by the time school let out!" he went on.

"So if you get that Dr. Strange costume I was telling you about, it’ll be just perfect! We’ll have the two best costumes anyone could hope for!" he declared enthusiastically.

***

"So, Princess, just what kind of costume will you be overawing us mere mortals by wearing to Harmony's post-rugrat-escort party tonight?" Percy West questioned Cordelia Chase with his most charming smile.

"Well, since the Troll was originally trying to get people to follow some stupid mythology theme idea that he evidently thought was clever, I figured I'd get some additional credit from him by dressing up as Circe. She was some kind of queen back when the Greeks were in charge of things according to this book of myths I got from the library, and she would turn the people who annoyed her into animals," the school's reigning social queen answered.

"And god, that's exactly the kind of thing I wish I could do when these dweebs annoy me with their stupid complaints and stuff," she added with her typical self-important air, a look of annoyance on her classically beautiful features as she considered her social inferiors.

"Well, I have to agree with you, Princess, that would be a great thing if you could do that," Percy nodded his agreement, wanting to improve his standing with the gorgeous cheerleader.

"It's just a shame that we can't really get the world to listen to what we want and give it to us."

***

"Cordelia may think she’s going to be the hottest looking girl at the party tonight," Harmony confided to Aura as they made their way down the hall, "but she’s going to be dying of jealousy when she sees the outfit I’m wearing.

"*I’m* going to be the one with all the power once the guys see my costume tonight," she predicted confidently.

~~~

No one could begin to predict the full repercussions which all of the forgoing decisions would send echoing through the mystical landscape, but the ether reverberated as Janus sat back and laughed himself silly with anticipation.

~~~

Summers Household
The next evening


"Well, how do I look, Mom?" Buffy asked, the expression on her face both hopeful and concerned as she twirled and modeled the billowy red gown she’d acquired at the costume shop the day before.

"You look beautiful, Buffy," Joyce smiled affectionately at her daughter, her maternal pride evident in her gaze.

"Very eighteenth century, I would say. Although I think you should have some type of necklace or pendant if you really want to look the part," she noted.

"Hold on a minute," she said, as a stray memory blossomed. "I think I may have something you can use."

After two minutes’ exploration through one of the boxes in the bottom of her closet, Joyce emerged with a triumphal smile, holding up an ivory cameo on a black satin choker.

"I knew I still had this around somewhere," she declared as she held it out to her daughter. "This was given to me by my Grandmother Jenny shortly before she died. She told me it was the last memento she had left of her best friend, who had disappeared mysteriously several years before.

"She said she wanted me to have it, to give to my daughter when the time as right," Joyce said with a fond smile at the memories it brought back. "She told me it would help my little girl survive through dangerous times, and that without it, she would surely die.

"Grandmother Jenny was supposed to be something of a psychic, you see," Joyce explained with an apologetic, semi-embarrassed shrug. "My mother said she had predicted the times when every one of her grandchildren would be born, almost to the minute, and that there had been a number of times that she’d also managed to warn other members of the family about various natural disasters earlier enough to let them get out of the way and to safety.

"Anyway, regardless of whether you believe she was psychic or not, this will still go beautifully with your gown," she noted as she held it out for inspection.

"You’re right, Mom, it’s perfect!" Buffy smiled with appreciation as she examined the proffered locket and gave Joyce a hug. "You’re the best Mom ever!"

"And your outfit looks really sharp, too," she then noted as she stepped back and looked her mother’s business pantsuit outfit over with a discerning eye. "Very professional looking and everything. What are you going as – some kind of lawyer or something?"

"No, not a lawyer," Joyce replied as she shook her head in disagreement.

"At least, I hope not," she then added with a half-laugh.

“Matt insisted we should all dress up in costumes for the party we’re hosting,” she began explaining, referring to her junior partner, “and he wanted to pick out everyone’s costumes for them, so that everyone’s costumes would match.

“And I insisted that I was only going to agree if I could dress as some kind of respectable, professional person. No way was I going to dress up as one of those spandex-costumed superheroes he loves reading about in his comics,” she noted with a tolerant smile as she reflected on the younger man’s semi-obsession.

"Anyway, he agreed and said he’d arrange for everyone’s costume and he gave some sort of I.D. badge I’m supposed to carry as part of my costume. I’ve been told my character is an undercover agent for a government agency."

"Oh, so you’re like Dana Scully, huh?"

"Something like that, I guess," Joyce laughed. "Honestly, I haven’t even look at the I.D. Matt gave me yet – I only went along with the idea to humor Matt, to tell you the truth. Now, I think you’d better finish getting dressed, don’t you? It’s almost five o’clock and Willow and Xander should be showing up for you very shortly."

~~~

Inside a small store in the commercial shopping area of the city, green-tinged light flared around a two-faced bust and a spiteful and mean-spirited Englishman laughed with cruel amusement as arcane energy rushed outward to flood the town.

~~~

The blackness faded and Alex Scoren (Official designation LX-20N) shook off the momentary dizziness and crouched down to minimize his presence as he scanned the area around him for any signs of hostile forces.

The area around him was chaotic in the extreme, with all types of beings – both human and what looked to be numerous strains of experimental hybrid species running around in confusion.

But what was most significant was that right now he couldn't feel the normally all-pervasive, constant awareness of one of CenGov's Dominator's presence that normally seemed to lurk in the back of his mind.

And if that was true, it meant that now was the opportunity he had been waiting for to finally gain his freedom!

A moment later, though, upon seeing an unusual glow flare up accompanied by the sounds of battle on the horizon, Alex sighed and gave his weapons a quick check to ensure they were all working properly (and that was another puzzle, he noted absently – the few weapons he was carrying all seemed to be general issue items that would be used by the typical Alliance soldier, and most certainly none of the customized designs he'd created for his own use) before then heading off to investigate.

He might not know exactly where he was, but his instincts were still that of a protector and they were telling him that something very, very dangerous was going on and that people were in danger.

So, despite anything else that might be happening, he was going to do his best to make sure that the people around here were safe and protected.

~~~

Siobhan Hanley stared around, trying to comprehend what was happening around her.

It seemed only a moment ago that she had felt an overwhelming impact hit her between her shoulder blades as she and Jason were preparing to head over to the Suburban Center to meet up with Michelle and her fiancé, and the last thing she could remember seeing before the blackness had taken her had been the sight of her sword-brother drawing the blade from the concealed sword-cane he always carried with him, a look of rage on his face as he turned and stared at something behind them.

Now, she found herself in the midst of what appeared to be some sort of riot, with a large number of the participants apparently children dressed in a wide variety of costumes, running around and screaming in panic.

A small furry creature who resembled a scaled down version of Chewbacca from the Star Wars franchise, rushed at her and she quickly sidestepped its attack and kicked its feet from under it as it passed, causing it to fall to the ground and allowing her to kick it in the head and render it harmless, at least for the moment.

Murmuring the retrieval spell she’d learned from her mentor back in Switzerland around the beginning of the twelfth century, she smiled as her favorite sword, a katzbalger she’d had made especially for her by an exceptionally talented swordsmith she’d run across in Germany at about that same time, appeared in the air immediately before her.

Her hand snapped out and she snatched it before it could fall to the ground, her reflexes seeming to be even faster than she’d thought herself to be, and she glanced around, trying to determine which direction to head in order to acquire the information she’d need to figure out where and when she was and what she needed to do to get home.

Hearing what sounded like the noise of a battle, she headed off in that direction, sword at the ready and her every sense alert for signs of danger, spurred on in her actions by some strong but nebulous feeling that something dangerous was over in that direction and the equally strong certainty that she was urgently needed there.

She took a moment to slash away some of the fabric of the somewhat cumbersome gown she had found herself dressed upon awakening, since that same sense of foreboding was telling her that she was going to need to be able to move quickly and freely in the very near future.

~~~

Tinya looked around her, seeing the pandemonium that was going on around her and tried to figure out how she’d ended up here, and where exactly ‘here’ might be. The area around her seemed to resemble the holos she’d seen of the early, technologically primitive eras of Old Earth, or possibly one of the frontier planets which had regressed and lost their technological capabilities.

Her short-term memory seemed to be a bit foggy, since she couldn’t remember exactly what she’d been doing before finding herself here, but that wasn’t as nearly important as helping the people around her who clearly needed help against the hordes of monsters that were running rampant through the area.

Splitting apart into her three bodies so as to multiply her ability to help those in need, she headed off in a reflexive response to the innumerable cries for assistance around her.

~~~

The creature pushed itself up off the asphalt and glared around in confusion at its surroundings.

A loud blaring noise and a high-pitched screech coming from behind it preceded by half an instant the sudden impact of something smashing into it, and it quickly whirled, roaring in rage as its arm batted away whatever it was that had attacked it, the bone-like protrusions jutting from its elbow and knuckles tearing the metal crumpled around its arm into an even more tattered ruin.

~~~

Kara shook her head groggily and shoved herself to her feet, looking around dazedly.

Seeing the towering grey-skinned monster tossing aside the SUV that had crashed into it as though it were a toy made of tinfoil and cardboard, she lifted into the air and zoomed towards the monster, her hands clenched into fists in an attack that she already knew would do only minor damage to the rampaging beast.

Her main intention at the moment was to try and focus the monster’s attention on her and allow any civilians in the area to flee to hopefully safer refuges. She knew the rest of the League was on their way to join her, and she had the feeling that they were going to need as much assistance to handle this particular menace as they could get.

Some reporters had evidently overheard Booster’s earlier comment describing the monster’s rampage and the television commentators had quickly picked up on it and used it as an entirely too-suitable appellation.

So far, nothing they had been able to do had stopped Doomsday for more than a few moments of time, and Power Girl wasn't at all sure what else they could do to delay it until her cousin showed up to help out.

~~~

Kang blinked and looked around, anger beginning to flare as he took in his surroundings. Not only wasn’t he in New York, challenging the current incarnation of his nemeses in this time period, the Avengers, he had apparently somehow been transported to some rinky-dink backwater town without even the courtesy of having any of his opponents transport here with him.

Did they truly think he’d allow them to casually throw him aside and ignore him, as though he were some minor rogue not worthy of their attention? That was a mistake they’d never dare make again! He’d show them the true folly of that belief and make them regret that they’d treated him this way!

With a casual wave of his hand, the blasters in his gauntlets incinerated the hovel nearest him, making the screaming rabble in the area begin running away, screaming in terror as he made his way down the street.

~~~

Sersi blinked and looked around in confusion at the completely unfamiliar scene around her.

It had only been a moment ago that she had been standing next to Dane at Avengers HQ as the two of them recounted their adventures of the past few months during their return home across the myriad of realities that Proctor had tossed them during their battle to save their teammates from the insane dimensional traveler’s attacks.

The brunette Eternal then frowned with mingled concern and puzzlement as her telepathic scan failed to locate either Dane or any of her fellow Eternals in the vicinity.

That was quite strange, she reflected as she absently gestured and tossed aside the small group of what looked to be a scout force of Deviants as they attempted to attack her. The chaos that looked to sweeping through this area was exactly where she would have expected to find most, if not all, of her companions. Perhaps the pandemonium she’d encountered here was part of a more wide-spread wave of disorder covering the country? That could partially explain why she had found herself alone here amid the bedlam, although it didn’t begin to explain why she couldn’t even feel the presence of her soulmate, Dane.

Hearing the sound of panicked screams mixed with the semi-familiar screech of energy bolts tearing things apart, she gave a mental shrug and lifted off the ground to fly off in the direction of what was most likely yet another would-be self-styled supervillain.

~~~

Nyeun Chun Ti shook his head to rid himself of the wooziness and frowned as he failed to recognize his surroundings.

Hearing the growl of something large and nasty-sounding erupt from somewhere behind him, he spun around, the Atomic Axe in his hand reflexively lashing out in an aggressively defensive motion, and he indifferently watched both halves of the massive furred body drop to the ground, the blood pouring out of both pieces pooling on the ground in thick scarlet pools.

Glancing around at the screaming masses running around in panic, Ti shook his head again, this time in rejection of his current situation.

He might not know where he currently was or the reasons he had ended up here, but that didn’t necessarily mean that he was forced to remain here.

Lifting the Axe above his head, Ti brought it streaking down in a diagonal slash in front of him as he concentrated on visualizing the familiar environs of his home.

He smiled as the easily recognized contours of his family estate became visible in the tear he’d just ripped in space-time and he made a second slash at right angles to the first to make it even easier to step through.

He didn’t notice (and probably wouldn’t have cared even if he had) the additional gashes in the spatial-temporal fabric that the trailing edge of the Axe had ripped as he stepped through the aperture he’d made on his way home to rejoin his teammates in the Fatal Five.

As the breach to the thirtieth century slowly closed behind the Persuader, the other rifts that still remained in Sunnydale in the twentieth century began pulling further apart as the multi-dimensional stresses inherent with the existence of the Hellmouth began proliferating.

~~~

Dormammu threw another eldritch bolt at the infuriating mortal sorcerer who had time and again frustrated his attempts at taking over this world, his fury growing with each passing moment. He felt far weaker than he knew he should, and he worried that the thrice-damned mortal had somehow found a way of draining the power of the Faltines that provided him with the arcane energy that enabled him to rule his home plane.

Could he have possibly allied with his traitorous sister to siphon a portion of his power from him? Regardless of the cause of his current weakness, he would not stand by and allow anyone to challenge him and walk away unscathed!

Strange would pay for his effrontery! And he would pay with his life and his soul, if he had his way!

~~~

Carol Danvers blinked as she tried to figure out how she’d suddenly found herself no longer standing in the main administration building of the Canaveral compound, but somehow in the midst of what looked like some movie producer’s wacked-out outdoor version of the cantina scene from the original Star Wars movie that had been set in some residential neighborhood.

Dozens of oddly garbed humans – and humanoid creatures – of widely varying sizes were all rushing around, either chasing others or being chased, all the while screaming in rage or terror.

As she watched, something resembling a human-sized Tyrannosaurus Rex caught up with a small furry humanoid it had been chasing, and took a tremendous bite out of the tiny creature’s upper torso with its mouthful of shark-like teeth, abruptly silencing its victim's shrill scream of terror even as a fountain of blood sprayed across the lawn in front of it.

Outrage and fury filled her as she watched the callous murder of a sentient being and she reflexively shifted, her business suit disappearing as her uniform appeared in its place, the golden lightning bolt across her chest contrasting vividly against the black of her costume.

An instant later, a bolt of energy erupted from her outstretched fist, impacting against the lizard creature and blasting it backwards through the wall behind it in a gesture of retribution for the murdered innocent.

Warbird then lifted herself up into the air and headed towards the nearest group of innocents, who were fighting off the attacks of a group of what looked to be some type of gigantic arachnoids.

~~~
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