It's a jump to the left
I don’t own Buffy the vampire slayer or anything pertaining to that franchise such as the movie, the show, the comics, the books, the spinoff Angel the series, the character, etc. In fact if and when you see the word Disclaimer just assume that I own nothing and no one in the story, you’ll probably be right. Warning the narrator voice is based on Forest Whitakers stint on The Twilight Zone so its long and uses a lot of encyclopedia words (and was a pain in the ass to write).Narrator:
Reality is not as singular as some would have you believe; there are an infinite number of them in existence already and more coming into existence every second. Now most of these realities spring up from seemingly insignificant and infinitesimal variations (waking up a second or two late, wearing navy blue socks instead of sky blue, using jam on your toast instead of butter or any other number of possibilities) and are soon reintegrated into the timeline from which they sprung. Other more significant differences such as Germany winning WWI or the human race never becoming the dominant life form on planet Earth produce viable alternate timelines capable of independently sustaining themselves.
Knowing this people would be quick to ignore or disregard the seemingly inconsequential and minute deviations, and they’d be wrong. Sometimes, not many but just enough to have a real effect one of these small changes leads to another change big enough to have a real impact. Imaging for a second if you will that that one extra second of sleep being the difference between stepping on the cats tail and falling down the stairs in the resulting yowling, scratching pain induced retaliation and not. Or that because you used jam instead of butter the plaque in your arteries doesn’t build up just enough to induce a heart attack. Now let’s take a look at Sunnydale circa 2003, at its defenders on a night like any other night and the changes that a little jump to the left can cause.
The front door to the Summers house opened with a bang as two young women stepped in from the night carrying a third between them. As they moved her to the couch more women, some barely into their teens poured in through the door followed by the distinctive figures of Buffy Summers, Faith Lehane, Willow Rosenberg and Xander Harris. Every one of them bore some evidence of the nights activities be it cuts, bruises, broken bones, torn and dirty clothes and in the case of the injured girl on the couch bite marks. Buffy took charge, as had become habit over so many years, calling out “Giles we’ve got injured.” before starting to supervise the less wounded potentials attempting to patch up themselves and their sisters.
Moments later Giles, Dawn and some of the potentials that hadn’t gone out that night rushed into the living room and began to administer first aid. Coats and jackets were stripped off and hung up or tossed into a pile to be thrown away. Usually Xander would’ve have helped out but instead he dropped his jacket into the growing pile of discarded clothes on the floor and headed towards the stair, beginning to peel of his t-shirt as he went. The squelching sound of his sweat and goo slick shirt reluctantly pulling off his body drew Buffy’s attention. “Where are you going, we’ve got injured potentials down here.”
The almost dictatorial tilt in Buffy’s voice was something he’d come to know very well and most times he’d let it flow off him like water off a ducks back. Tonight was not one of those nights. He hadn’t had a good week, a blown tire, delays on the project his team was working on because somebody ‘upstairs’ was caught embezzling, spilled coffee on his pants and getting caught in the rain were just some of the highlights of his week. To cap it off he was tired, injured and had work tomorrow morning and here was ‘General Buffy’ starting in again. At other points in his life he would have been able to vent to someone about all this his friends, Giles, Joyce but they were either gone, dead or dealing with the impending apocalypse to listen. Well now he had a volunteer.
Turning around he left his t-shirt hang how it was, one side hitched above his shoulder revealing an already darkening bruise on his ribs and the other halfway up his torso. “I’m tired, I’m hot, and I’m sweaty, bruised, beaten and battered. I’m covered in dirt, blood and demon goo. So I’m going to strip naked, take a long hot shower and go to sleep like god intended. Is there a problem with that?”
“As a matter of fact, yes I have a problem with that.” By this time everyone in the living room had turned their attention to the not quite argument. “We have a room full of potentials just, as if not more than, injured and tired as you and instead of helping you go off to take a bath? No, you’re going to grab some bandages and help the others.” As she finished speaking Buffy crossed her arms across her chest and stared at Xander.
As the quiet held another voice spoke up, almost low enough to pass for a whisper but just high enough to let others know that it was meant to be heard. “He should just stay out of the way with the rest of the normals and leave the fighting to those who know what they’re doing.”
Xander took a deep breath, wincing slightly as damaged muscle and skin stretched across equally damaged ribs. “First of all you don’t get to order me around like a five year old. Secondly, helping? Who do you think pays for the food, utilities and supplies around here. Who do you think his most of his free time repairing this house and the things in it, making sure that it stays standing? And then spends whatever little free time remaining whittling stakes? So no you don’t get to act all high and mighty with me about helping while you just stand around.” Cutting off whatever reply that Buffy might have had, he turned to face the other occupants of the room, standing and sitting most still stunned by what they were witnessing. He zeroed in on one person in particular, the one who had made the insulting comment moments ago.
“Now for you, Buffy and Giles may cut you slack because you’re a potential slayer, or Willow because she thinks you have perky tits and a nice ass. Frankly I’m not even sure why Faith hasn’t kicked the crap of you yet but I’m done putting up with your spoiled little rich girl better than thou attitude. Yes I’m normal, no magic, no slayer powers or even watcher knowledge but this normal has been in this fight since he was 16. That’s 7 years, more than most slayers make it. 7 years of facing off against vampires, demons, magic users, the regularly occurring big bad and the yearly apocalypse and I’m still here. You on the other hand are a potential still wet behind the ears and yet to see any real action. But somehow you’ve got all the attitude and bravado of slayer, something that you shouldn’t have seeing as by my count someone’s pulled your ass out the fire at least seven times tonight and the last one almost lost her life doing it.”
Pulling back on his shirt he started walking towards the door, grabbing his favorite axe as he went. Buffy’s voice, slightly less authoritative than before caused him to pause in his tracks. “What do you think you’re you doing?”
Grabbing the door handle he looked over his shoulder at her. “I just realized that I don’t have to be here. Because I’ve got a big empty apartment, a nice tub with hot water and a nice warm bed to go home to. So that’s where I’m going, home.” Turning back he pulled open the door and walked out slamming into Spike and knocked the smaller vampire back. Tightening his grip on his axe he pushed past the second souled vampire and headed off into the night.
“Oi!” Spike yelled at Xanders retreating back before turning to look into the house. “What’s wrong with droopy boy?”End
If you didnt guess the mouthy potential was Kennedy.