A/N: Post Season 7. Post Season 4 I think for Angel. Anya happened, but I made it so Xander never lost his eye or had it repaired. One or the other, I can't decide yet. That's really my only continuity mishaps. Nothing belongs to me. I don't own and you don't sue.
Why again is it always me that gets sent halfway across the world to search for more potentials," Xander questioned with an agitated sigh, "Why not Willow, or even Kennedy?"
"You're right, it's sexism," quipped the chipper Slayer, "Girls rule and boys drool."
"Actually, Buffy," Willow began,"That quote is supposed to be "Cats rule and dogs drool"."
"Why would I tell Xander that," questioned Buffy, "It has nothing to do with the conversation in any way, shape, or form and I'm shutting up now."
"Sorry about being babble-girl, I'm just excited about there being possible potentials in Japan," apologized Buffy, "Aren't you guys excited?"
"Well the possibility of potentials in Japan is quite exciting since they, as a people, have quite excellent fighting skills and their weapon handling is surpasses most," stated Giles, "Are you aware that some of the earliest documented accounts of reported demon activity-"
"Yeah," interrupted Xander, "And they have the whole cool samurai sword thing going on for them."
Maybe they can show us some new techniques after Xander finds them," said Buffy, excited at the thought of a new combat style.
"Yep," said Willow, "Plus there's the whole being ahead of us in technology thing."
"Ooh," exclaimed Buffy, "I wonder what kinda of techno-goodies they'll have to show you, Willow."
"Yeah," said Xander, "Maybe they could even show me some new kind of..and I'm going aren't I?"
"Yep," chorused Willow and Buffy.
Xander sighed dramatically, causing the slayer and techno-pagan to giggle.
"Awe, come on Xander," needled Buffy, "You know you want to go anyway, and it's paid for, so what's the problem?"
"And you can check out all the cool Kung-Fu stuff, like in the movies you like," added Willow, wanting to put her two cents in as well.
"Yeah, yeah," ground out Xander, "It would have been nice to have been asked instead of told."
Buffy and Willow laughed at their friend's rejoinder, both locking their arms around him in a group hug.
"I'm going to miss you," said Willow, getting teary eyed.
"Me too," agreed Buffy.
Xander grinned at the squishie-girlie hugs he was recieving, hugging both his girls right back. He looked over their heads at Giles, arching a brow.
"Aren't you going to miss me too, G-man," questioned Xander cheekily.
"I told you not to call me that, Xander," said Giles with a sigh, removing his glasses to clean them on his shirt.
Xander grinned at Giles, it wasn't his way to get overly emotional. Must be the Brit in him, thought the brunette.
"Of course I'll miss you, wretched boy," rang out Giles, surprising Xander with the amount of feeling he had put into the statement.
It made him feel all warm and toasty inside. So, check. Toasty, of the good.
"Thanks, Dad," Xander quipped.
Giles began to polish his glasses once more.
"Yes, well," began Giles, "Do I need to tell you too-"
"Be careful," chorused Buffy, Xander, and Willow, having heard Giles' safety lecture many, many time before.
Willow wrapped her arms around Xander's waist from behind him, getting a bit emotional once again. Xander just patted her arms softly, reassuring her that he would be alright.
The brunette glanced over at Buffy.
"When's my flight?"
"Tomorrow at 8am," replied the Slayer.
"Lovely," said Xander sarcastically.
The slayer just grinned at her Xander-shaped friend, well used to his moods by now.
"Donn't forget to say good-bye to Dawn," reminded Buffy, "She'd never forgive you if you didn't."
"As if I would forget to say adios to my partner in crime," Xander said with a fond smile playing about his face.
"It's late," mumbled Willow, as her face was still pressed to Xander's back, "We should get some sleep."
"Yes," aquiesced the Watcher, "And Xander's flight is going to come very early."
"Alright then," said Buffy, giving Xander another quick hug, "Willow and I will drive you too the airport tomorrow, okay?"
"Okay," replied Xander, returning both his girls' affections.
He turned to look at Willow with a mischievious look in his eye.
"Want to help me pack, Wills?"
Grinning up at him, Willow nodded.
"Well, good night then," said Giles.
A chorus of goodnights rang out to him as he exited the room.
"Want me to help you pack, too," questioned Buffy.
"Surely," said Xander amicabally, grinning, "How could I pass up a lovely offer like that?"
Giggling, they all set out towards Xander's room down the hall.
Xander relished his time with them as they walked, committing the way they both looked to memory, as was his way, storing up the good to negate the bad. It didn't often balance out.
Who knew when the next time he would see their smiling faces would be?
The next morning came and went in a rush because a certain blonde slayer forgot to set the alarm clock. Leave it to Willow to anticipate Buffy's forgetfulness. The witch had gotten them all up and dressed in record time, albeit still 15 minutes later than originally planned. That had cut short the last minute goodbyes, threats of dismemberment if Xander didn't call, a gift from a smiling Willow, and one teary eyed hug from Dawn.
Two hours and three Pepsis later, Xander was bored out of his skull. He'd tried take a nap, but was too jittery for that. A foot tapped repeatedly for about 5seconds longer than his usual attention span of 7.3 seconds, and he let out a sigh. Even the in flight movie was boring. Sure, watching a Star Trek movie for the millionth time was better than nothing, but there were only so many times in a week you could watch Captain Picard take on the Borg. Now, if only they'd had the new Dr. Who series, that would've been something.
With a sigh, Xander flopped back in his seat, wiggling about in the standard, stiff as a board uncomfortableness that was his 1st class seat. (On the Watcher's Council) You'd at least think the 1st class seats would be comfortable, Xander thought. He should have had Willow mojo on up for him since she was Miss Uber witch now. He suddenly remembered the gift Willow had tossed at him at the last second. He unbuckled his belt and leaned down to scrounge about in the bag at his feet until he held up his prize triumphantly.
"Wonder what this could be," Xander pondered aloud.
He opened the envelope with a tiny witchy smiley face on it and opened the card. It read "Because I know how easily you get bored, a gift from me too you. I love you. Willow"
A brilliant smile graced Xander's features, making his eyes light up in anticipation. Willow always did give the best gifts. He unwrapped his gift to find a book on Japanese myth and lore. Score! He owed Wills a big hug now. He settled back in his seat and began to read the first myth entitled "The Tale of the Shikon no Tama."