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31 Never Was

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This story is No. 1 in the series "Thirty One". You may wish to read the series introduction first.

Summary: 31 things Xander never was.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Multiple Crossings > Xander-Centered > Ficlet CollectionsLadyAvariceFR153218,57728168,8711 Oct 121 Nov 12Yes

CH 29: Music and Metal

CH 28 Costume: Zack Fair from Final Fantasy VII

Xander was at a loss. He really didn't know what to go as now that the soldier idea was caput. There was a no-weapons rule laid down by the troll.

He'd even confiscated a foam bat. Foam!

Huffing he took another look in the bargain bin, hoping something would jump out at him.

Well, not literally anyway.

There in the corner was a set of oversized headphones like a DJ might use. The wire coming out of the headpiece was ripped, leaving a dangling end. Probably why they were on discount.

Mentally he went over the characters from movies, books and TV he knew of that he could be with a set of headphones. He knew there had to be at least one.

Finally, it clicked. The headphones and some silver paint later and he was walking home.

Still the proud two dollar costume king.

"Hi Xander, what are you supposed to be?"

"Hi Mrs. S. Technically, one of the best undercover guys, ever."

He grinned as she looked over his costume. The headphones were around his neck, the wire clipped off and replaced with a mini antenna. On the sides of the ear pieces was a stylized metallic silver face with a little 'J' done to the bottom right of each face. The rest of his outfit consisted of a snug black t-shirt, jeans and construction boots. Overall, he looked like a young man from just about anywhere in the States.

"Well you certainly look nice, Xander. Have a good evening."

"Thanks Mrs. S. As soon as the girls are ready we can go."

As if summoned Buffy and Willow came down the stairs, Buffy huffing over Willow hiding that great outfit under the ghost sheet.

Willow smiled as she spotted Xander's costume. Sneaky and clever enough to get around Snyder's rule.

What the troll didn't know was meant to be a weapon couldn't be confiscated.

Xander always was smarter than he believed he was.

"Xander, why are we all here, rather than in the library?"

Giles was sitting on a park bench, polishing his glasses. Buffy and Willow were on the one next to him, chattering quietly and waiting for the 'boys' to settle down to business.

The sun was bright, the day was warm, his headphones were quietly pumping out some of his favorite music from around his neck (that had been a rather nice discovery) and his friends were all here.

Time to drop the bombshell.

"Some of the things from Halloween stuck."

Giles stopped polishing his glasses to stare.

"What do you mean, stuck?"

"As in didn't go away, part of me, not going to go bye-bye."

Giles started rubbing his glasses again. Harder.

"Oh no! We can fix it though, right? I mean we have to be able to fix it!?"

"There's nothing to fix. Actually, this may have been a good thing."

Willow and Buffy could only stare in shock and Giles kept polishing his glasses.

"Wills, who did I dress as?"

It took the redhead a moment to think about it, but then it clicked.



Willow's nervous babble suddenly stopped and she smiled.

"So, Xan, how much of what did you keep?"

Giles stopped polishing, Buffy looked curious, and Willow just saw his mischievous smile and eyed the car she hadn't noticed behind him, parked just beyond the park's fence.

With a wicked grin Xander shimmered then vanished.

Before Giles or Buffy could do more than sit up at full alert there came a musical sound from the lot. Three pairs of eyes stared in awe as the former car shifted until in its place stood a tall metallic figure. The features were alien, the limbs similar but odd, but the stance and body language was pure Xander.

"Well, what do you think?"

There was a 'chink!' as Giles polished right through his glasses. Willow, getting over her shock stumbled over and he knelt down, lowering one hand palm up. Awe shifted to a smile as she ran a hand over her best friend's now metal hand.

Buffy was still as a statue for the longest time before a wicked grin crossed her face.


"Yeah Buff?"

The three humans noticed that in place of brown eyes were blue…. somethings that still managed to seem Xander-ish.

"Can we get Spike to steal you, and then have you do that flippy thing?"

The others paused their motions and stared into space as they contemplated.

Then Xander's face moved into what was unmistakably a grin.

"That has potential for much goodness."

Willow giggled as she settled in Xander's hand and let him lift her up.

So he was over 15 feet tall and metal, big deal.

As if feeling her gaze Xander turned his head towards her and smiled that one smile that was only ever for her and Jesse.

He was still her Xander. And always would be.
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