One Year Later...
I DO NOT OWN BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER OR GREEN LANTERN. BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER IS OWNED BY JOSS WHEDON AND GREEN LANTERN AND ANY OTHER DC COMICS CHARACTERS ARE OWNED BY DC COMICS.
Author’s Notes: I’m AUing the timetable quite a bit. I don’t want to get into the Blackest Night until way later on. So, I’m stretching events out.
One Year Later...
He was nervous as hell. That was the only way he could describe the feelings he was having right now. The Guardians had called him into their council hall and gave him a mission personally. He was to return to Sunnydale and make certain nothing from there managed to receive a Qwardian Power Ring, the ring of the Sinestro Corps. “Watchtower to Green Lantern.”
“This is Green Lantern.” Xander said. “I’m coming in.”
He had been floating around Saturn taking in the sights. Xander restarted his flight and headed towards Earth. He stopped at Mars and snapped off a picture of the red planet, glad that he thought to bring a camera with him as well as tons of film. Xander put the camera back inside the ring before reminding himself that he would have to learn how to develop his own pictures if he didn’t want any questions to be asked later. He flew next to an airlock not wanting to be seen as rude by simply phasing through the outer wall.
“I’m here.” He said communicating to them. “You can come in.”
The voice said to him.
Xander phased through the outer wall and into the Watchtower to be greeted by one familiar face and one he knew but wasn’t ever introduced to before now. John Stewart had seemed to take it upon himself to act as a mentor figure for Xander which the native Southern Californian didn’t mind at all. John had helped him get over the shock of being on Oa and more than once stopped him from trying to swat Bzzd, who was now a pretty good friend of despite what had occurred.
“Xander, I’m glad you finally made it here.” John said joking with him. “Take a wrong turn somewhere?”
“No, just taking the scenic route.” He replied. “I’m still wrapping my head around this.”
“You’ll get use to it.” John said. “I wanted to introduce you to J’onn.”
“Hi, Xander Harris.” Xander said extending a hand which the Martian took.
“Nice to meet you. John has told some interesting stories about you.” J’onn said receiving an embarrassed smile from Xander.
Xander began to wave his hands back and forth. “Whatever he told you isn’t true.” He said. “I didn’t know not to try the Korugaran Spice Loaf.”
“Actually, he told me about you managing to save an entire planetary civilization on your own from a rouge planetoid.” J’onn informed him. “Though, I am curious about the Spice Loaf.”
“Another time, what was it that you really wanted to talk to me about?” Xander asked John.
“Oracle took the liberty to arrange an alibi for you to cover the past twelve months as well as invest the money you made off that graphic novel that Kyle helped you sell.” John informed him. Ah yes, the graphic novel.
Xander thought to himself. One of the leftover skills from Soldier Boy had been Soldier Boy’s ability to draw which Xander had practiced since Halloween. The graphic novel was actually a fictionalized version of what happened in Sunnydale and he knew what might happen if anyone there found out. He’d rather face the entire Sinestro Corps with a half charged ring. Fortunately, he had used a pen name.
John led him into a computer room where Xander saw a pretty red headed woman in a wheelchair working at the controls. She turned around and smiled at them.
“So, this is the guy I’ve been hearing about.” She said pushing her wheelchair over to him. She held out her hand to him. “Hi, my name’s Barbara.”
Xander shook her hand. “Xander Harris but I think you already knew that.” He said smiling.
“I did but it is great to finally meet you.” She said. “I hope you don’t mind that I invested the money you had in your account but you will be happy with my results.”
She pushed herself back over to the console and typed in a few commands bringing up what looked like a balance sheet. Xander whistled when he saw how much was in his account now.
“One hundred and fifty three million dollars!” He exclaimed. “Of course, I don’t mind at all. I just hope you collected a fee from me for this.”
“I do investments for the entire League and I collect a fifteen percent fee.” Barbara said. “As you can see, it’s worth it.”
“I’d say so.” He said. “I’m guessing you’re Oracle.”
“I am.” Barbara said. “Your alibi is that you’ve been living in Metropolis working at the Daily Planet as an intern. Lois Lane had remarked that you’re one of the more competent interns she’s seen. Don’t worry, she’ll keep your identity a secret.”
“Okay, just a bit nervous.” Xander replied. “Thank you for this.”
“Not a problem.” She said. “You’ve been enrolled in UC-Sunnydale and you’ll start in the Fall.”
“Wait, I didn’t do good enough to get into college.” Xander replied.
“You’re in.” Barbara told him almost scolding him. “Don’t worry about it.”
Xander flew down to Sunnydale. The first person he intended to visit was Joyce so that she could see him in full uniform. He landed on Revello Drive and went back to his civilian attire. Xander walked the rest of the way to Casa de Summers and knocked on the door. Joyce answered and his surrogate mom hugged him like he was a soldier who had just returned home which was a good way to describe it. She brought him inside.
“Xander, you’re home.” She said. “So, make any friends?”
“A lot actually. One of them I kept trying to swat but I broke that habit really quickly.” He said
Suddenly, her expression changed. “Xander, you’ve got to go to the college campus.” She said with concern. “Buffy’s in danger.”
“What’s going on?” He asked.
“She doesn’t tell me much but there’s some kind of demon underneath the college in a secret military base.” Joyce explained.
Xander used his ring to don his uniform and looked over at Joyce.
“You look good, Xander.” She said. “Now go.”
Xander flew through the roof and headed in the direction of the university. He stopped in mid-air and began to use his ring to scan which drew quite a few looks from the students. Finding Buffy fighting some strange cyborg, he phased through the ground to help.
Riley tackled Forrest to the ground to get the thing off of his girlfriend. The cyber-demonoid tried to strike him but an emerald energy blast left a large hole where most of Forrest’s chest had been. What had use to be his friend fell to the ground like a marionette whose strings have been cut and Riley looked to see where the energy blast had came from. Buffy stared at it as well and was amazed.
“Buffy, do you know him?” Riley asked.
“I think I’d remember a Green Lantern.” She replied.
The Green Lantern walked over to them like an officer approaching a crime scene. He looked over at Buffy.
“What’s going on?” He asked.
“This secret project named Adam is responsible for all of this. He’s planning on trying to replace humanity with things like him.” Buffy said pointing to Forrest.
“Okay, I’ll take care of Adam.” The Green Lantern said. “You help out the humans that are still here.”
He flew down the corridor that led to Adam.
“Good luck.” Riley said before obeying his orders.
Xander landed in the room that Adam was in. The cyborg turned to face him and the abomination looked puzzled.
“Strange, you were not whom I was expecting to face.” He said. “No matter. Your death will award me your power ring.”
“I wouldn’t bet on it, Terminator-wannabe.” Xander replied.
Adam’s arm transformed into a mini-gun and he fired it towards the Green Lantern who erected a shield to block the attack. Noticing Adam ceasing his attack, Xander chopped off the mini-gun arm with a sword construct. Before the cyborg could react, Xander caught him in a guillotine construct. The construct blade came down and Adam’s head fell to the floor. “Warning, nuclear meltdown detected.”
The ring said.
“Where?” Xander asked the ring.
The ring indicated Adam’s body which he wrapped in a protective bubble. Phasing himself and his ‘cargo’ through the surface, Xander headed into space and hurled Adam’s headless corpse into space away from the Earth. Adam’s corpse exploded furiously and Xander let himself drift back down to Earth.
“Well, that was easy.” He said.
Buffy, Willow, Giles, Tara, and Riley walked into Casa de Summers rather glad to be alive. They hadn’t been sure the spell they had found would have worked and the surprising arrival of a Green Lantern certainly tipped the scale in their favor.
“John acted like a mentor/father figure for me.” Xander said.
Buffy’s eyes and Willow’s eyes lit up when they heard the voice of their best male friend come from the kitchen and they stampeded into there to see him. They wrapped him in a bear hug.
“Buffy, Willow, need air.” He said to get them to release him.
“Xander, when did you get back?” Willow asked.
“Today, I didn’t know where you two lived so I decided to stop and see Joyce first.” He replied.
“It’s great you’re back.” Buffy said. “I guess that job didn’t work out.”
“No, I’ve met a lot of great people and made a ton of friends.” Xander told Buffy before looking over at Riley. “So, who are you?”
Riley held out a hand and Xander shook it. “Riley Finn.” He said introducing himself.
“So, do I get to give the shovel talk or was that already done?” Xander asked.
“Already taken care of.” Willow said before noticing Tara was staring at Xander. “Tara, is something wrong?”
Tara shook her head. “No, noth-ing’s wrong.” She said. “Hi.”
“Hello there.” Xander said. “Any friend of Willow is a friend of mine.”
“Tara’s more than a friend.” Willow said hinting which Xander recognized.
“Cool.” Xander replied. “I don’t exactly feel right threatening you with a shovel so I hope you understand.”
“I do.” Tara said nodding.
Buffy and Willow dragged Xander away to talk about the past year but Tara stayed in the kitchen. Giles noticed Tara seemed a bit confused.
“Tara, is something the matter?” He asked.
“No.” She said shaking her head. “It’s Xander’s aura.”
“Yes, is there something strange about it?” He asked.
“It’s like something has changed it to green.” She said. “It’s a really pretty green.”
Giles and Joyce exchanged looks at each other. Both of them didn’t need to guess why Xander’s aura appeared green to the young witch.
“I wouldn’t worry about it.” Giles said. “I’m sure nothing’s wrong.”
The first thing Xander did was pay off Joyce’s mortgage on her house. She was one of the few people he had trusted with what he had chosen to do so he felt like he needed to repay her for that. Joyce helped him find a rather nice house to move into as well as helping him furnish it. He was on patrol near Proxima Centauri having already done a quick patrol of Sunnydale dusting a couple of dozen vampires. Xander wasn’t exactly pleased with this Initiative that had been set up in Sunnydale but he was glad it was shut down. Patrolling took a while for him which is why he was glad that Hal and John were there to patrol as well.
He knew that there were several people within the Corps that didn’t like him. Some of them he understood why and others he didn’t. Ch’p didn’t like him because the first thing Xander had thought to do when they had first met was offer the squirrel-like Green Lantern a peanut. The partner of Rozix, who was the Green Lantern who had fallen on his car, hated him mainly because of Rozix’s death. Drazor wasn’t one to forgive and forget. The Guardian known as Scar didn’t like him but Kilowog had told him that Scar didn’t like anybody.
An asteroid was blown into space dust by an emerald blast and Xander turned to see who it was. Drazor hailed from the same planet as Rozix and Xander had heard a rumor that the crocodile had sworn a vendetta against him.
“Drazor, something wrong?” He asked.
“You are the problem.” Drazor said. “You shouldn’t have the ring. The Guardians had no right giving it to you.”
“Funny, I had this crazy notion that they were in charge.” Xander replied realizing where this was going to end up. “If they decide that I’m worthy of the ring, it’s their call.”
“I’m taking the ring.” Drazor said eyeing him like a crocodile eyeing cattle.
“Drazor, listen to me. I’ve been told Rozix was a good man. He wouldn’t want you to do anything dumb like this.”
Drazor wasn’t listening and sent out another blast. Xander dodged and told his ring to let out a emergency signal detailing what was going on. He hoped that Drazor was going to be too vengeful to realize the signal was being sent.
Another asteroid was destroyed as Xander dodged another blast from the alien crocodile. He twisted around and used his ring to grab an asteroid to hurl back at the crazed Drazor. Drazor blasted through the asteroid effortlessly and caught Xander by the throat using a green mechanical pincer arm construct. The arm was drawn closer to Drazor and Xander tried to defend himself but Drazor grabbed his ring hand.
“There’ll be none of that.” Drazor said.
Xander saw Drazor’s mistake. The senior Green Lantern had his hand over Xander’s ring thinking Xander wouldn’t try anything. Xander concentrated and fired a blast of energy from his ring which incinerated Drazor’s hand. The pincer construct that was restraining him was dissolved as Drazor grabbed his hand in pain. Xander was taken back by what he’d done. He hadn’t meant to take Drazor’s hand, just to blast him off. Drazor pointed his ring towards Xander.
“Time to die, Harris!” Drazor yelled as he fired at Xander.
Xander braced for the impact but was surprised that it didn’t come. He opened his eyes to see someone had protected him from the blast with a green force field. Xander looked towards the source and recognized who it was. Like something out of either a Celtic or Scottish myth, Boodika had saved him in the nick of time. Drazor seemed furious that the Alpha Lantern had interfered and redirected his fire at Boodika. Xander returned the favor and created a shield to protect Boodika from the blast.
“No Lantern escapes the Alpha Lanterns.” Boodika said before draining Drazor’s ring of its energy. “Lantern Harris, you will assist me in escorting Lantern Drazor to Oa for judgment before the Guardians.”
Xander nodded knowing that it wouldn’t be smart to cross an Alpha Lantern. Boodika formed a bubble around Drazor and flew off with Xander not far behind.
“Looks like my patrol will have to wait.” He said to himself.
“I tried going to see Xander’s new place but he wasn’t home.” Willow said to Buffy as they were patrolling. “I wonder where he could be.”
Buffy sighed. “I don’t know, Willow.” She said. “I hope he’s not out patrolling on his own. He’ll just get hurt.”
This night was surprisingly quiet which was bothering the two of them. It was literally dead tonight. No undead fiends were skulking around and they’d already seen Spike but he didn’t count because of the chip. They decided to head for Willy’s to see if he knew anything. Buffy opened the door to the bar to hear screams of terror and a lot of crying. She entered with Willow not far behind to see every demon hiding behind whatever they could find. Willy poked his head out from behind the bar.
“Relax, it’s not the GL.” He said.
“What do you mean by that, Willy?” She asked him walking up to the bar.
“Didn’t you notice the Green Lantern that had shown up in town and put the fear of every single deity that could possibly be named into the hearts of every demon in town?” Willy asked.
“Why would a Green Lantern be here?” Willow asked. “They’ve never been around before.”
“I don’t know either but he don’t like demons.” Willy said. “He dusted like twenty-four vamps over in the warehouse district before heading out into space.”
They left Willy’s and decided to check on Buffy’s mom. She was on the phone when they arrived and they decided to listen in on her conversation.
“So, when will you be back?” She asked whoever was on the other end. “Okay, I’ll let them know.”
Joyce hung up the phone as Buffy and Willow let their presence be known. Buffy walked over to her mother.
“Who was that, Mom?” Buffy asked.
“It was Xander.” Joyce said. “His mentor, Mr. Stewart, called him to LA to look at some classic architecture in some old hotel.”
Joyce walked away to do something else and Buffy left with Willow. Buffy stopped and Willow seemed confused by her friend’s pause.
“Is something wrong?” Willow asked her.
“My mom lied to my face about Xander.” She replied. “Why would she lie for Xander?”
“Maybe he joined the CIA.” Willow suggested. “If he did, I’ll make him quit.”
Xander sat in the cafeteria eating a cheeseburger with French fries and a glass of juice. He never did ask what the juice was ever. It was one of the rules he had about the cafeteria on Oa. Instead of merely reciting the incident with Drazor, he let Ranakar enter his mind to view the memory himself. He liked Ranakar. The Guardian reminded him of Obi-Wan Kenobi and he also seemed to be the only Guardian to have a sense of humor.
“I would not want to be in your shoes.” Guy said as he sat down with a plate with some kind of food on it.
“What is it that I’ve done that I’m going to regret doing and who is pissed off at me?” Xander asked eating another fry.
“Soranik has been trying to sedate Drazor so that she can treat his injuries that you caused but he keeps waking up screaming ‘Oh Shit! It’s him!’ before she can do anything.” Guy said. “She’s pissed that you blew off his hand.”
Xander put his burger down. “He was dumb enough to put his hand over the ring when he was trying to kill me.” Xander said. “Don’t tell me you wouldn’t have done the same thing.”
“Guilty.” Guy said. “So, any idea what the fallout will be?”
“Soranik won’t want to see me for a while.” Xander replied.
“Ain’t that the truth.” Guy said laughing.
Bzzd flew into the cafeteria and landed on the table that Xander and Guy were sitting at. Guy noticed him first.
“Hey Shorty, what’s up?” He asked receiving a glare from Xander. “What did I say?”
“He’s a fellow member of the Corps and his partner is an entire planet, Guy.” Xander said. “I was bullied in high school and they were always jocks.”
“I’m one too.” Guy said.
“That’s my point. All of us are members of the same Corps. Calling each other names like that are demeaning and beneath us.” He said.
“This coming from the guy who called Kilowog ‘Gray Gargoyle’.” Guy replied.
“Hey, the Guardians passed sentence.” Bzzd said. “Drazor lost his ring and is being sent back to his homeworld..”
“Oh well, I’m going to find Kyle.” Guy said finishing whatever was on his plate. “See ya, Xander.”
When Guy left, Bzzd flew up to look Xander in the face. “Thank you, Xander.” He said.
“Not a problem.” Xander replied.
“I mean it. Guy says what he will because people will overlook what he says because they know what he’s done.” Bzzd said.
“I know but that isn’t an excuse.” Xander said. “Belittling someone like that can weaken someone’s will after a while. The Green Lantern Corps is built on willpower so it’s kinda like we’re hurting ourselves for letting it happen.”
Xander didn’t want to know what kind of demon it was but he was glad he had killed it. Joyce had called him and informed him of the lie she had told Buffy and Willow in order to cover for him so he had Oracle find an old hotel for him to buy. The Hyperion seemed like a nice place but he had discovered some kind of demon who could sense his power ring’s energy which led to Xander roasting said demon with his ring.
“The things I do to make it so that Joyce isn’t called a liar.” He said to himself. “Damn, I need to find a contractor. Ring, find Cordelia Chase.”
He headed for the location that the ring had told him and shifted into civilian mode so that he didn’t give himself away. Surprise hit him when he saw Ranakar exiting Cordelia’s apartment with an astonished Cordelia, Angel, and Wesley in tow.
“Ah, Xander.” Ranakar said. “Perhaps we can continue this inside Ms. Chase’s apartment.”
Xander followed them back inside Cordelia’s apartment and the former May Queen spun him around.
“How in the hell do you know the little blue guy?” She asked. “He teleported himself here saying he was waiting for you.”
Xander turned his attention to Ranakar who kept smiling that annoying smile the Guardian had. He shook his head.
“Are you trying to turn my life into hell?” He asked the Guardian.
“No, I’m merely here to inform you of something.” Ranakar replied.
“Couldn’t you have just called?” Xander asked.
“Who is he, Harris?” Angel asked demanding an explanation.
“You really don’t know, Deadboy. Fine, I’ll let you all know.” Xander said transforming into his uniform and taking a knee. “Hail Ranakar, Guardian of Oa.”
Angel, Wesley, and Cordelia each took a step back in shock which made Xander crack up laughing. Cordelia, feeling insulted, slapped him in the back of the head.
“Hey, what was that for?” He asked.
“Why couldn’t you just tell us?” She asked before a smile displayed not only her marvelous pearly-whites but also her realization. “Oh my God! Buffy doesn’t know, does she?”
“Ah gee Cordy, do you really think I can bring something up like this?” He asked. “Buffy and Willow think I’ve been interning at the Daily Planet so I’d appreciate it if none of you squealed on me.”
“Lantern Harris, the reason I have come here is in regards to Faith.” Ranakar said. “I am in the process of prevailing onto this country’s government to hand her over to the Green Lantern Corps. My intent is to have a Green Lantern act as a ‘parole officer’ I believe the term is.”
“Okay, but why are you doing this?” Xander asked.
“Lantern Gardner suggested it after talking with Lantern Natu. He believes that Faith may have not been acting under her own will at the time after the accidental death of Deputy Mayor Finch. I have already been by her cell though she may not know it and checked.” Ranakar said. “Whatever effect that was applied to her acted like a sort of drug causing her to lash out.”
Angel looked over at the Guardian. “You think it might be an effect the Mayor had on her.” He said.
“Precisely, that is why she turned herself in.” Ranakar said. “Her actions were not her own. Officially, she’ll be in your ‘custody’ but a Green Lantern will serve as her parole officer.”
“I sense bad things.” Xander said. “Okay, I’ll do it.”
“Splendid, I’ll be off now.” Ranakar said teleporting away.
Xander got rid of his uniform and returned to his civilian attire only to have Cordelia slap him in the face. He glared at her.
“What was that for?” He asked. “The last couple of days haven’t been the greatest for me, Cordy, and the last thing I need are my friends hitting me.”
Concern could be seen in her face as she asked. “What happened?”
“Yesterday, a Green Lantern by the name of Drazor attacked me while I was on patrol. I got his dead partner’s ring when the guy fell on my car last year.” Xander explained.
“That was you at the Grand Canyon.” Cordelia said.
“Yah. After New York, I went back to Sunnydale and told only two people what I planned on doing. Giles and Joyce were really supportive though I wish she could have come up with a better excuse that classic hotel architecture.” Xander said. “What in the hell am I going to do with a hotel?”
“Which one is it?” Angel asked.
“The Hyperion, encountered a demon there but I toasted it.” Xander said.
“I know what you can do with it.” Cordelia said almost eager. “Angel needs a place to stay.”
“You want me to be Deadboy’s landlord?” He asked Cordelia who nodded. “No, ain’t gonna happen.”
“Xander, you’re a Green Lantern now.” Cordelia said scolding him. “You can’t keep hating Angel like that.”
Xander’s shoulders dropped when he realized she was hitting him where it hurt, metaphorically speaking. “I’ll rent to you, Cordelia.” He said. “Got a dollar?”
A dollar floated through the air and Xander plucked it out of the air. He looked over inquisitively at Cordelia who shrugged.
“That’s just Dennis.” She explained.
“Okay, you’ve just paid a year’s rent and I have ‘no problem’ who you ‘hire’ as a ‘maintenance man’.” He said knowing Cordelia would get the hint.
“So, what’s happened with Drazor?” She ask. “Kick his ass?”
“No, I sent out a distress call and he got me by the throat. He put his hand over my ring to try to stop me from trying to use it.” Xander said. “So, I blew off his hand.”
“Ouch.” Cordelia replied. “Then, what happened?”
“I was lucky because Boodika shown up in the nick of time. Boodika is an Alpha Lantern, an Internal Affairs portion of the Green Lantern Corps.” Xander said visibly shuddering when he said “Alpha Lantern”.
“Something bothers you about Alpha Lanterns, doesn’t it?” Angel asked.
“These are people who are so devoted to the Corps that they’ve basically handed over their souls over to the Guardians. They underwent invasive surgery to have their rings and their power batteries physically merged with themselves as well as being hardwired into the Book of Oa.” Xander said. “They’re devoid of emotion and they just seem dead already.”
“Why would anyone allow themselves to undergo that?” Wesley asked.
“They were that devoted to the Corps, Wes.” Xander replied. “The Alpha Lanterns gave everything they could to the Guardians and this was their reward.”
Cordelia shook her head. “What happened after Boodika shown up?” She asked.
“Boodika drained Drazor’s ring of its energy and ordered me to accompany her back to Oa so that Drazor would face the judgment of the Guardians.” Xander said. “Guardians stripped him of his ring and sent him back to his home planet.”
Xander paced outside the prison gates. He wasn’t looking forward to this but he wasn’t about to disobey a Guardian’s order. Faith could be seen being escorted by a dozen guards and a confused look came over her face when she saw Xander waiting for her. The gate opened and Faith as well as the dozen prison guards stepped out.
“Boytoy, why are you here?” She asked.
“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.” He said. “But you’ve been placed in my custody sort of like a work release program worked out by some very powerful people.”
“Shit, you work for the fucking Watchers.” She accused him. “Don’t you?”
“Oh, hell no.” Xander said gesturing to his 1967 silver colored Shelby Mustang. “I’ll tell you more when you’re in the car.”
Xander led Faith over to the passenger door and opened it for her. She got in and he walked around the car to get into the driver’s seat. Faith looked over at him.
“So, what’s really going on?” She asked.
“I might have mentioned going on a road trip after graduation right?” He asked to see if Faith remembered.
“Might have heard something about it.” She said indicating for him to continue.
“I stopped at a gas station to buy a Coke when a Green Lantern fell on my car.” He said surprised to see the stunned look on the Slayer’s face. Her eyes darted over to his hand where she noticed a ring on Xander’s finger.
“Is that what I think it is, Xan?” She asked only to see him nod in response. “Holy shit, does B know?”
“No and if you tell, I’m sticking you in a sciencell on Oa.” He said glaring at her. “I’m acting as your parole officer here, Faith, and Ranakar believes in you.”
“Who’s Ranakar?” She asked.
“My boss.” He said as he started the car and drove away from the prison.