As to the force of the god’s words, consider this observation. When God Whispers, man bows before the thunder.
It had been a fitful week for Ethan, the sense of impending loss, seemed to permeate his every moment. He could not even find refuge in dreams. His God was upset with him; never the less the deity was charging him with a mission. The chastisement left the Chaos Mage confused, had he not sown chaos at every turn, and at every opportunity. So why was he being plagued by these dreams, it didn’t make sense.
Then during one of Ethan’s nightly supplications, the answer was driven home. Janus appeared before his self proclaimed degenerate son. “MAGE, YOU HAVE STRAYED FROM MY PATH. YOU HAVE IGNORED MY DIRECTIONS THAT I SENT IN DREAMS. BECAUSE YOU DID NOT RESPOND WHEN FIRST I WARNED YOU, YOUR BROTHER HAS BEEN KILLED. YOU COULD SAVED HIM, GONE ALSO ARE MOST OF HIS TEAM. NOW MY AVATAR IS IN DANGER OF FALLING INTO MADNESS. YOU CAN SAVE HIM, AND SHOULD YOU IGNORE ME ON THIS, AND I LOSE HIM, MY FORGIVENESS WILL FOREVER BE DENIED UNTO YOU!”
The Humbled Englishman dropped to his knees. ‘Could it be true, Giles was dead’ Grief became rage, and rage turned to resolve. “Master, I am yours. Direct me in thy wishes. Guide me in what you would have me do. How may I save your chosen Avatar?” The Chaos Mage was truly saddened that he had displeased his god.
With a slight grin, the god looked upon his most active and loyal of worshipers. “YOUR WILLINGNESS TO RETURN TO THE TRUE PATH IS A GOOD SIGN. WHILE YOU DID STRAY, YOU NEVER TURNED YOUR BACK ME. THEREFORE YOU ARE STILL MY PRIEST. AS TO MY INSTRUCTIONS FOR THEE, THIS IS WHAT I WOULD HAVE YOU DO.”
As Janus explained his plan, Ethan was shocked at the simplicity of it, and how profound the effect would be. His God’s rules now he understood now, he inwardly vowed to never disappoint the deity again. Change and progression not anarchy and insanity. The God explained to him that ‘Complete Chaos’ was almost as bad as ‘Total Order’, both concepts were held in contempt by Janus. From now on Ethan would be expected to walk the path of the teacher, mentor, and guide. In the name of Ripper, Ethan was going to leave a legacy, worthy of both his fallen friend and his god. Then as suddenly as it began, Ethan awoke from a dream. The Chaos Mage was unsure of the truth of the dream. ‘Still, it would be good to see his old friend ‘Ripper’ just to make sure all was still good in ‘Mudville’, so to speak. Besides what would be the harm in making sure that the dream was false.’ Ethan thought to himself.
Although Ethan’s base mood was best described as ‘Skeptical’, he never the less couldn’t take the risk of displeasing his god. So when he returned to Sunnydale, he came prepared for any eventuality. ‘The High School, that’s where I’ll find Ripper’ he thought to himself. As he rounded a corner in the school hall, he saw something out of his nightmares.
The bodies of Giles and the Scoobies were strewn about in a horrific fashion. To make matters worse, there was a troll like creature in a suit and tie kicking the bodies with glee. “Oh, Joyous day, all you little trouble making little pricks are dead.” The Troll punctuated each word with a kick to one of the bodies.
Ethan with his rage boiling over, roared, “Just what have you done to my nephew and his friends troll…..Never mind I’ll let you explain to the police.” Ethan’s own innate inner magic, had detected that there was still life within Ripper’s Apprentice, the boy Janus had identified as his avatar. Knowing now that the only course he had left was to follow his god’s directives, and to do so he needed the boy safe, so he claimed him as his own. After the troll was knocked cold, Ethan serendipitously cast some spells that formally transferred custody of the boy to him. Then Ethan knelt down beside the boy, and called upon Janus for a blessing upon the boy. With a sudden jerk, the boy gasped, and returned to consciousness confused. “Shh, Boy, I’m here to help.” Ethan told the boy. “When police get here, I will be your Uncle.” Then seeing the retort in Xander’s eyes, traveling to the boy’s tongue, Ethan added, “I know I haven’t done a lot in the past to convince you of my worthiness; But I’m here, you don’t have a lot of options or allies, and trust me on this if on nothing else ‘THAT SON-OF-A-BITCH-KILLED-MY-BROTHER’ for that I’m going to burn his ass.”
Xander having weighed his options had to admit;
1. He needed help if he was to deal with Angelus, and Ethan was here.
2. Ethan did have motives to help.
3. Ethan’s sneakiness could be a godsend against Angelus &Spike.
4. He (Xander) really didn’t have a lot of options.
The Final Reason that convinced the boy, was something the G-Man told him after the Eyghon incident, a drunk Giles confided in Xander that Ethan was his older half brother, and while they often fought there was a bond between them, and that was the deciding factor. Having made a similar vow of vengeance over the loss of a brother, Ethan’s need for revenge was a motive that Xander could understand. “Alright, UNCLE ETHAN what is your plan?” The boy finally said.