I can not believe that no one. ABSOLUTELY NO ONE! Has ever done a crossover like this before. It just makes too much sense. Well I pride myself on taking that first step, the plunge as it were. So here's my contribution, a one shot, maybe it'll inspire other authors to write a longer version of suspicion and intrigue as our favorite Scoobies move next door to the Petersons.Disclaimer: I own nothing. None of the characters in this belong to me. All BtVS Characters are the property of Joss, ME Productions and 20th Century Fox. All characters from The 'Burbs originated from the brilliant mind of Dana Olsen and belong to him, Universal Studios and all the people involved in the making of the film. Consider this a little tribute to Tom Hanks as well.
The new house had been built relatively quickly – vans of every shape and size as well as a few trucks had delivered all of the necessary materials – and so a much nicer looking house had been erected on the site of the major explosion.
An explosion he had caused. Oh sure it was all in the name of solving a possible murder – technically, but he still wished that some people would just forget about what he did. Like his wife.
The new neighbors seemed to be ok though. They weren’t shut-ins, not by any stretch of the imagination, although some of them could stand a few wardrobe improvements. They tended to show off far too much flesh making him decidedly uncomfortable.
The large and impressive looking four story complex stood as a testament to human engineering and tenacity, but still curiosity often started to get the better of him. Especially three months into the new arrangement when he started noticing some very questionable goings on at his neighbor’s house.
The young women and teenage girls didn’t seem to have any type of curfew. They’d be running around at all hours of the night, mostly in groups of three or more. Always wearing leather. Always carrying something that he couldn’t quite make out.
Then there was the one-eyed man. He wasn’t as frequently spotted as the female population of the house – instead Ray would catch an occasional sighting when he had to repair something in the backyard or the front yard. There really wasn’t anything odd about it – with the possible exception that Ray noticed an axe a good many times nearby.
One night however everything just seemed to come to a head. Art was going off again about Satanists – and other cults – worried that another crazy family had moved in. Carol however pointed out that the house was run as part of some new school that had been built not too far away in the main area of town. The house was a sort of off-campus living area.
Art still refused to believe that they weren’t normal. He started in on the way things were perfectly normal and then ‘bang’ there were gas line explosions and skeletons of dead people found in the trunks of cars.
Ray angrily told him off. He wasn’t getting involved this time. He should have known better.
The loud knocking at his front door woke him up around two AM. Shrugging into his robe and mumbling at Carol to stay in bed – Ray Peterson walked downstairs to answer the door. “Art, if this is another of your stupid…” Ray trailed off when he found the one-eyed man holding a very bloody looking axe in one hand and a young girl leaning up against his shoulder in the other.
“Mister Peterson,” the man said in a controlled tone.
“Wh-What?” Ray stammered doing his best not to stare at the axe.
“Someth… Someone jumped us,” he hastily explained. “Can we use your phone to call for help? I… I dropped my keys,” he admitted reluctantly.
Ray nodded. “Couldn’t you just knock on the door?” he asked.
“Nobodies home,” the girl said gasping through her pain. “Late night studying on campus,” she added.
Ray could tell there was a lie in that sentence, but he wasn’t about to let the poor woman bleed to death on his front porch.
“Sure, sure, come in,” he said quickly moving aside.
The younger man flinched at his words. “Never do that,” he ordered his voice one used to giving commands.
“Huh?” Ray repeated mystified.
“Never invite anybody into your house like that after dark,” the other man elaborated leading the girl into the living room and gently lowering her onto the couch. “Some people might try and take advantage of that sort of thing,” he added. “Do you have a first aid kit?”
Ray could see now that the young woman had a few deep scratches – almost as if something had clawed her across the stomach. “I-I’ll get it,” he offered hastily moving into the kitchen and out to the garage.
“Stupid, Xander,” Tracy whispered into his ear. “It was stupid of us to volunteer to come back alone… They knew where we were and how to hit us,” she said biting down on her lip to keep from screaming out when Xander lifted her top.
Xander shook his head. “It was either us or Dawn and Andrew, I wasn’t about to send them here alone,” he said.
“Did you kill it?” Tracy wondered.
Xander shook his head. “I think I just winged it. I can swing an axe pretty hard, but I’m not as good with it as I used to be,” he sighed wistfully and started tearing up a stray article of cloth that had been on Mister Peterson’s couch. It used to be part of an old nightgown, but Xander didn’t care, he just started making a bandage.
“Here’s the phone,” Ray returned lugging the first aid kit and a cordless phone.
Gratefully Xander took it from him and dialed a number. “Could you disinfect her wound for me?” he requested politely.
Nodding Ray got on his knees and opened the first aid kid. Rifling through it he wondered when the hell the last time was he’d bothered to restock the damn thing. Probably some time during the Klopek incident. Luckily there was at least something. “This is going to sting,” he told the girl.
“I’m used to it.” She closed her eyes in anticipation.
Ray noticed an older scar peeking out halfway from her chest. Surprised he almost dropped the bottle of disinfectant.
“Something… Watching… Stalking House.”
Barely aware of the conversation between his one-eyed neighbor and whoever was on the other line he tried his best not to think about what could have done this. There weren’t any bears around here. Unless you counted the occasional Satanist neighbors moving in Ray had little knowledge as to things that could cause an injury like this.
“So… What’s your name?” he asked.
“Tracy,” the girl replied.
Ray smiled slightly. “I’m Ray, but of course you already knew that… And he’s… You know I’ve talked to him often, but I don’t think I’ve ever actually gotten his name.” The realization made Ray a little nervous.
“Xander doesn’t trust often with that sort of information,” Tracy stated with a friendly smile aimed at the other man. “Although I think he just conveniently likes to forget.” Her conspiratorial whisper made Ray smile. “He enjoys messing with the neighbors, especially old Walter.”
“Nosy bunch of jerks,” Xander muttered before resuming his conversation with the person on the other end of the phone. “Ok, Will, we’re at Peterson’s place. Let us know when they get it… I mean here.” Hanging up Xander moved to take over. “Sorry about this,” he apologized again.
Ray shrugged. “Neighbors have to stick together,” he said. “Especially around these parts.”
Xander smirked. “I couldn’t agree more, Mister Peterson.”
Ray blinked slightly, but shook off the strange unease he got from seeing the expression on the other man’s face. If he didn’t know any better he would have sworn the guy was referencing the Klopek incident. But that was just impossible, these people hadn’t even been around at the time.
“How long before the ambulance gets here?” he asked.
“Uh, we’ve got someone coming,” Xander returned evasively. “Relax, Mister Peterson, we won’t be here long.” Smiling slightly he double checked Tracy’s vitals and gave a slight nod.
Ray got back to his feet and his gaze fell on the axe, which lay forgotten at the edge of the couch. He began to notice that the blood he’d seen earlier wasn’t exactly the color it should have been. His eyes widened slightly when he realized that the blood was actually blueish brown. And seeping into his carpet. “Oh crap, Carol is going to kill me!” he blurted.
Xander sighed. “Whoops,” he said sheepishly. “Sorry about that, sir, we’ll pay for the cleaning,” he offered.
Ray backed up. “What the hell did you kill?” he demanded.
Xander shrugged. “I didn’t kill anything, Mister Peterson… Ray, I just winged it. I didn’t get a good look at it either so I couldn’t begin to tell you… Who it was, ha, ha, right, who not what. It was definitely someone.” Xander stopped himself before he started a full on babble because that would have just made things worse.
Ray shook his head. “Forget it! I don’t want to know!” he declared. “Just promise me you aren’t killing people in some kind of satanic ritual,” he requested as politely as he could. He’d be freaking out a lot more if he wasn’t so bone tired and concerned for the girl who’d been injured.
Xander laughed. “You can relax on that front, Mister Peterson, we prefer to make all of our sacrifices in the name of the almighty Twinkie,” he stated with a straight face.
Ray laughed nervously. “Ok… I’d better go upstairs and make sure Carol is ok, you’ll be alright down here until your friends show up?” he wondered.
Tracy nodded. “Go back to bed, Mister Peterson, we promise we won’t make too much noise,” she said cryptically.
“Right.” Ray started to leave. But once again he stopped when he saw the axe. “On second thought maybe we should put that outside,” he suggested.
Xander shook his head. “Nah, I’ve got it,” he said hefting the axe single-handed and moving into the downstairs bathroom. “This stuff better not be acidic,” he grumbled. “I lost two axes to that kind of demon goo already,” he complained under his breath.
“Good night, Mister Peterson,” Tracy called.
Ray shook his head and started up the stairs. “Art isn’t going to hear about this,” he decided with a slow nod. “He’ll just keep pestering me about his stupid insight into the satanic cult we’ve got living next door… Again.”
“Why couldn’t it have been a vampire,” Xander said unaware that Ray could hear him. “One swipe and they’re dust, but nooooo it has to be a walking mountain of scales and fangs and who knows what else.”
“Oh quit griping, we’ll get you a new axe,” Tracy scolded.
“I’m entitled to a good gripe, Tracy, I mean do you have any idea how hard it is to get demon blood out of metal?”
“I’m the one with it all over my favorite top.” Tracy scowled.
“Buffy will take care of it. And if she can’t I’m sure the rest of the class will eviscerate it in no time for daring to attack you and me,” Xander assured with a smirk.
Ray sighed from his position on the stairs. “Why is it they all move to this neighborhood?” he asked of no one in particular. Deciding it was better to just go back to bed he went upstairs knowing that his next door neighbors probably wouldn’t be there come morning.
“Think we should be worried about him?” Tracy asked.
Xander shook his head. “Nah… The guy took down one of Wolfram & Hart’s best clients. They couldn’t even get that Klopek guy off on a technicality after Peterson and his group blew their house to kingdom come… Why do you think Buffy chose this place to move to?”
“Why did she? We’re nowhere near the active Hellmouth in Cleveland.” Tracy eyed Xander with an expectant look.
Xander smirked. “When your next door neighbor is willing to do anything to prove that some human is performing satanic rituals it kind of increases the likelihood that they’ll be useful in a crisis sometime…” Xander trailed off with a shudder. “Except maybe that Art guy, I think his wife is part demon,” he added with a grimace.
Tracy laughed and then winced as she clutched her injured side. “Don’t do that.”
Xander smiled briefly glad that he could help and then sat down waiting for the all clear from Willow. Living in the ‘Burbs wasn’t the worst that could have happened for this band of demon hunters. Compared to Sunnydale this place was downright normal, except for Walter and his goddamn Dog. One of these days Xander was going to get Dawn to practice with her crossbow again while Queenie was out and about, if it worked with Miss Kitty Fantastico – and that was an accident – it’d work for the mutt from hell.
There were a lot of places in the backyard where a body could be buried. Especially one as small as a dog.The End