A VERY AU HALLOWEEN
DISCLAIMER: I don’t own BTVS or Joan of Arcadia and I do not profit by writing this. It’s for fun. READ!!
AUTHOR’S NOTE: This is not part of my ‘Adventures of Xander and Faith’ series, but another chapter of that is coming soon. Consider what might have happened on Halloween if Ethan Rayne had decided to work his magic in a town other than Sunnydale. Thanks to Storyseeker for his help in reviewing this. As usual, if you have any comments or preferences, please don’t be shy. RandR.
Ethan Rayne smiled as another satisfied customer left his shop. Two days before Halloween and business was booming. It had been a near thing. He had almost opened his costume shop in Sunnydale, just to have the chance to beard Ripper in his den. The Slayer certainly would have made the evening interesting. Then, by chance, he had heard of this town. It was, on the surface, a perfectly average American town. Nothing at all distinguished it, unless one was to look at the supernatural side.
There was none. The town was devoid of vampires. There were no demons of any kind. It was creepy in its normality. That just couldn’t be allowed to stand.
The people, Ethan reasoned, would probably thank him for livening up their dull little burg. He had been doing a good business in monster costumes and had also sold a handful of super-hero costumes as well. After all, there had to be a good mix or it was just carnage and not chaos.
He had made sure to acquire a wide variety and took just as much pleasure in selling a spider-man costume as he did in ringing up a werewolf mask and furry gloves. Some of the heroes, he was certain, would make plenty of trouble for the town all on their own. He could barely keep himself from grinning in anticipation.
Ethan looked up from his ledger as the bell rang and another customer came in. A rather pretty brown-haired girl stopped and looked around for a moment before walking over to the hand drawn sign he’d prepared pointing the way to the costumes he’d carefully arranged by theme.
“Can I help you find something?” The girl jumped slightly at his voice, but then smiled and shook her head.
“I already found it,” she nodded at the sign. “I’ve got a Halloween party to go to and I know exactly what I want.” The smile froze on her face, though, as she caught sight of someone. Ethan followed her stare and saw a teenage boy in a brown corduroy coat examining the costumes over in the far corner. He frowned slightly, as he didn’t remember seeing the boy come in.
Ethan glanced back at the girl and found that her smile had vanished entirely, replaced with a resigned expression. She started over to him, and he turned to face her holding a costume.
“Personally, Joan, I think you’d look lovely in this.”
Joan stopped in her tracks. “Please tell me this is another example of your bizarre sense of humor.”
The boy shrugged. “It’s always your choice. You know that.”
Ethan tuned out the rest of the conversation to go back to his bookkeeping. A few moments later, the girl put the costume on the counter, a put-upon look on her face. “Guess I’ll take this.”
“Lose a bet?” Ethan asked before he could stop himself. She scowled at him. “Sorry. I couldn’t help but see your reaction when he showed you the angel costume.”
Her expression softened, and she gave him a rueful smile. “Something like that. Call it divine inspiration.”