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This story is No. 2 in the series "Life on the Hellmouth". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Life was going fine in Pleasantville...until Merton's Dad got a transfer...to a small town in Southern California called Sunnydale. Some AU going on for Big Wolf, otherwise the crossover wouldn't work. Tommy/Merton sequel to Priceless.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Television > Big Wolf On CampuscalikocatFR18321,741031,1881 Jan 1323 May 13No

Welcome to SunnyHell

Welcome to SunnyHell
by: calikocat
word count: 5324

Disclaimer: I do not own Big Wolf on Campus, however if I could find it on DVD I would gladly buy all three seasons. I do not own Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I do however own the DVDs. No money is being made from this, no copy right infringement was intended. Please don't sue me, I am but a poor and humble farmer/homesteader.

Set up: Tommy goes wolf the beginning of their Sophomore Year. Their Sophomore Year runs from the Pilot episode to Stone Free. Tommy and Merton start dating the summer between Sophomore and Junior Year. Junior Year runs from N'Sipid to Switch Me Baby One More Time. Use your imagination and throw in a few run-ins with Buffy-verse vampires. Ignore any and all mentions of Buffy or Sarah Michelle in the series. Junior Year is coming to an end when Merton's dad gets a transfer; he's needed to oversee/manage a new factory/business venture in Sunnydale. It’s an offer he can't refuse as he's thinking of his family first and the increase in pay will go toward college tuition for Merton and Becky.

XXX

There was a knock on the door; there were a limited number of people who could be on the other side, a grand total of three in fact. Things were still a little tense between the rents, or rather between Becky and the rents. Becky was still being difficult...and more than likely it was her on the other side of his door.

They'd been in Sunnydale almost two weeks; he hadn't realized they'd had so much stuff...okay he hadn't realized he'd had so much stuff. Mom had donated most of their furniture to Good Will before moving, so the rental truck was mostly filled with the odds and ends from his old Lair. He'd ended up driving his hearse halfway across the country following the hideous U-Haul. Becky, of course, rode shotgun.

“Freaker!” Yep, it was definitely her on the other side of the door. It was odd, having so much space to himself. An entire apartment above the garage, it was pretty cool too. “Merton!”

He sighed and opened the door. “What?”

“It’s about time.” She snarled as she pushed him aside.

“Don't you have your own Lair now? Why are up here in my space?”

“I don't have a lair; I have the basement, which is boring. It’s not fair.”

“What do you want Becky?”

She put her hands on her hips. “What I want is to go back to Pleasantville, but since that’s not happening I need a ride to the mall. I need a new outfit for the first day of school.”

“School doesn't start for another two weeks.”

“I just...I need to get away from Mom for a while. She's making me feel guilty for not being happy.” She looked like a lost little girl for just a second. “If I go out she'll stop giving me sad eyes.”

He shook his head. “Let me get my keys.”

Becky grabbed his left hand. “You're not wearing your wedding ring?”

“Not on my finger.” He reached into his shirt and pulled the chain into view, on it hung his usual medallion...and the pale gold wedding band. “Obviously I can't wear it in public; Mom and Dad don't know I got married to a werewolf, Beck.”

“Whatever. I still say you're like so lucky that Tommy Dawkins picked you.”

“At last, something we can agree on. Go get in the hearse already I'll drop you off at the mall.”

She rolled her eyes. “And what are you gonna do?”

“I thought I'd look for some occult book shops and such, kind of familiarize myself with the town and its perks.”

“Whatever.” She turned on her heel and all but stomped out. He shook his head before grabbing his keys and wallet and followed her out, locking the door behind him.

xxx

The first thing he realized as he drove around Sunnydale...was that there were a lot of cemeteries and even more churches and synagogues. It was eerie in a way that was almost familiar, Pleasantville only had a handful of cemeteries and a few churches, and only one synagogue. But his hometown did have its share of eeriness; which he was definitely feeling right then.

The next thing he noticed was that Sunnydale, like Pleasantville, did not have a Starbucks. Instead it had a cafe called The Expresso Pump, which had decent cappuccinos, which was a nice turn of events. Then...he spotted his first occult shop...then a magic shop, and a rare book shop, a pagan specialty store, another occult shop...and three Christian bookstores. Sunnydale was getting weirder by the second.

He'd abandoned the hearse a while ago, choosing to stretch his legs a bit and enjoy the afternoon. He had just spotted another book store when he bumped into someone, causing them both to stagger a bit. “Sorry, I wasn't paying attention, totally my fault.”

The other nodded. “No, no. I wasn't watching where I was going either. Sorry.”

“So we both had our heads in the clouds, no harm?” He tried his best to look friendly...it looked like it was working. The other boy, possibly his age, though quite a bit shorter nodded.

“No harm.”

“Merton Dingle, I just moved here.” He held out his hand.

The other boy sort of nodded, like he was surprised to actually take part in a conversation with another person, though he did shake Merton's hand. “Er, hi. I'm Jonathan Levinson.”

“Nice to meet you.” They released hands and then there was the inevitable awkward moment.

“So...where did you move here from?”

“Little town called Pleasantville, its back east past the Rockies, pretty much no one has heard of it.”

“So it was kind of like Sunnydale then?”

“Yeah...just not quite so sunny, and we didn't even have a Wal-Mart.”

“Wow...so what brings you to Sunnydale?”

“My dad got a promotion, and a transfer came with it. I get to start my senior year not knowing a soul...except my little sister who will be a sophomore. But thems the brakes.”

“Well...you'll know me. I'll be a senior this year.”

“Really?” Jonathan nodded. “Cool that actually does make me feel better.”

Jonathan just sort of gaped at him. “Uh...wow. Thanks. So uh, you wanna hang out for a while? I can show you around a little.”

Merton let out a sigh of relief, maybe getting to know people outside of Pleasantville would be easier than he thought. “Sure, I've got a couple of hours to kill before picking Becky up from the mall. Lead the way.”

xxx

Jonathan turned out to be an excellent guide, and Merton felt as though he were looking into a Goth free mirror. As good a guide as the guy was...he was like Merton used to be, not a friend in the world. The only difference was the lack of Goth attire and the uber pale skin. Nevertheless he was a good guy and even had some knowledge about the occult, which was odd but still cool.

Of course Becky didn't like the fact that she was relegated to the back seat because his new friend was in the front but his hearse, his rules. Besides the later it got the more nervous Jonathan became, so he offered to give the guy a ride home, it turned out to not even be out of their way. Jonathan only lived a couple of streets away.

The oddest part of the day happened when he pulled into Jonathan's driveway. His new friend started to get out of the car, but paused and looked at Merton seriously. “It’s a bad idea to go out at night alone, Sunnydale looks okay in the daylight...but there's some gangs in town and they go wild at night.” He flicked his eyes toward Becky in the back seat. “Be careful.”

A little chill went through Merton and he nodded. “Sure Jonathan. Thanks.”

“Yeah, I'll see you in a couple of days?”

Merton grinned. “Definitely.” Jonathan smiled and got out, closing the hearse door behind him.

“What was that about?”

“We're going to the movies.” He put the car in reverse and backed out onto the street. “How was the mall?”

She held up her shopping bags. “Bought my outfit, met a few people, had a low fat latte, flirted with some guys.”

“Were you carrying the pepper spray I bought you for your birthday?”

“Merton.”

“What about the stun gun I got you for Christmas?”

“Freaker! The point of flirting is to get dates and to find a boyfriend. Boys aren't any fun if they're maimed or unconscious.”

“Lori has been a very bad influence on you.”

“Just drive Freakenstine.”

xxx

“You really don't look like the kind of guy that watches action movies.” Jonathan said as Merton parked the hearse.

“I like lots of different movies, and I kind of got used to watching action movies because my friends back home love them. The more martial arts and explosions the better.”

“What are they like?”

“Lori is...dangerous and can hit hard. She's into kick boxing and tai kwan do.”

“I know a girl like that...not personally; she just saved me from the swim team...one of my more embarrassing moments.”

“You too huh? Usually when the bullies came after me I hid behind Tommy or Lori, whichever was closest, at least until the bullying stopped.”

Jonathan's eyes got big at that. “How'd you get the bullying to stop?”

“Tommy and I came out as a couple.”

Jonathan froze. “You're gay.”

Merton grinned. “Yep.”

“And a bully magnet.”

“Obviously.”

“And coming out of the closet with your boyfriend stopped the bulling how?”

Merton opened the door and stood, Jonathan did the same and they locked the doors. “Tommy Dawkins is a quarterback, best on the team. More than likely he'll make Captain this year. His dad is the Mayor, and his mom is the top reporter for the local TV station.”

“Wow.” Jonathan grinned back. “Is that why you dated him?”

Merton shook his head. “Love man. There's nothing else like it. Tommy's gonna move here after graduation.”

“So you're still together.”

“Till death do us part.”

“Wow---Ow!” Jonathan exclaimed as he ran into someone. “Sorry... hey Xander.”

“Jonathan.” The new boy steadied Jonathan, keeping him from falling over. “You okay man?”

“Yeah, again sorry.”

“No problem...who's your very pale friend?”

“Oh, Xander, Merton. Merton, Xander.”

Xander gave Merton a half wave. “First time I've ever seen anyone that pale walking around in the daylight.”

“I have a naturally fair complexion...that I would like to keep from getting scorched from this dazzling California sun.”

Jonathan snickered a bit. “We're gonna catch a movie...you wanna come?”

Xander looked thoughtful for a moment. “Sure. I could use a break from the gang. Willow's getting ready for school, Oz is still unconscious and Cordy hasn't called me yet.” He sighed and held his arms out. “I'm yours for the next couple of hours at least...we're not watching a chick flick are we?”

Merton shook his head. “Lots of explosions.”

“I like explosions.”

xxx

Time was starting to fly by and school would be starting soon, so Merton, Becky and their Dad ended up going to Sunnydale High to register for classes and pick up their text books. Thus avoiding some of the first day of school chaos.

Their first impression of Principal Snyder was not a good one...the little man did however seem impressed with Merton's grades...but not his choice of clothing, nothing new there. But there was something just a little bit...ooky about the man. Becky however couldn't care less.

“Could this be any more boring?” Becky asked.

He rolled his eyes. Teenage Drama, thy name is Becky Dingle. “It’s not that bad; at least we can get our books now and avoid the first day rush.”

“Whatever, let’s just find the library so we can go home. Hopefully Dad will be through talking to Principal Snyder by the time we get our books.”

Merton shivered at the mention of the little troll of a man. “Did he seem sort of evil to you? Maybe not quite human?”

“If all that bizarro crap you're into wasn't real I'd call you a freak and ignore you.”

Merton put his arm over her shoulders. “But all that bizarro crap I'm into is real so he might indeed be evil...or perhaps not entirely human.” He stumbled a bit when she shrugged him away.

They found the library easily enough, after which Becky handed him her list of books and promptly ditched him so she could explore a bit. So he entered alone, and promptly lost himself in the books. There were the usual books one would find in your typical high school library, biographies, history books, poetry, demonic manifestations, great works of literature...wait...what? Merton took a closer look at the shelves and noticed that there were as many, if not more books on demons and the supernatural here than either of the occult bookstores he'd been to.

What was up with this school?

“Can I help you?”

Merton jumped, and he was man enough to admit it...he squeaked an unmanly squeak. “Don't do that!”

The man, Merton assumed he was the librarian due to the British accent and the tweed suit, had moved very quietly...or he simply hadn't been listening. “Sorry.”

“No problem...um. I need some books, my sister and I just moved here.” He handed the lists to the man. “I didn't see anyone when I came in so I just started browsing.”

“Quite alright. Let’s get you settled then.” The librarian moved with an efficiency that Merton could appreciate, easily locating all the text books that he and Becky would be needing for their first semester.

“Thanks for the help Mr..?”

“Giles, Rupert Giles. And you're quite...my manners seemed to have escaped me. I apologize.”

“That's okay. I'm Merton Dingle, and my sister is Becky Dingle.”

Mr. Giles nodded as he wrote down the names on his paperwork. “Right, there you are Mr. Dingle.”

“Merton. Mr. Dingle is my dad.”

Mr. Giles smiled a little at the correction. “Of course. Well here you are, Merton, please just call me Giles if you would...all the children do. Will you be able to carry all of these?”

Merton grimaced; he really should have brought a back pack. “Probably not, and Becky ditched me to go explore the school.”

“I suppose I could give you a hand, get them to your car?”

He grinned. “That would awesome, thanks.”

xxx

School was starting tomorrow and he was restless, so he did what he normally did when he couldn't be still. Well, normally he'd seek out Tommy, but that wasn't an option anymore, so instead he looked for a place to just sit and be. Though it took him some time to find a place where he could be alone with his thoughts staying in his apartment wasn't an option due to Becky's habit of barging in. He'd driven practically all over town before he found a place that seemed suitable. It was at a park, Weatherly the sign had said, that he finally found a bit of solitude. It was just at sunset and the sky was becoming a beautiful array of colors, orange, pink, and purple just to name a few.

Briefly he remembered Jonathan's warning about Sunnydale's nightlife but he reasoned that he'd be okay. After all he wasn't going for a stroll in the park at sunset, he was sitting on the hood of his hearse in the parking lot, just thinking...and missing Tommy.

He sat there for more than an hour, no longer watching the changing sky as it grew darker and the stars came into view just as the security lights in the lot came on. So lost in his thoughts was he that he almost didn't hear the approaching footsteps.

Merton looked up and caught sight of a pretty girl dressed in black walking towards him; her steps were slow, almost hesitant. He gave her his nicest smile, trying to look friendly and not dangerous. Not that he ever looked dangerous.

She smiled back, her steps becoming bolder as she came close. “Um...hi.”

“Hello.”

“This is gonna sound crazy...but could you give me a ride? My boyfriend was supposed to be here half an hour ago but he never showed.”

Merton looked at her closely; her hair was a dark brown, her eyes a light blue, and her skin looked as pale as his in the light of the parking lot. He slid off the hood of his car and took a step towards the drivers side...he'd spotted what looked like blood at the corner of her mouth. “I'd like too, but I have a few errands to run. I'm sure he'll be along soon, what kind of jerk would leave a girl as pretty as you alone in the park at night.”

Her eyes narrowed, her face lost its gentle appeal. “Evidently you would.” Then her face changed, figured she'd be a vampire. “Guess that makes you a jerk.”

“No, I just don't like vampires, on account of they always try to eat me.”

She charged at him then but he was ready for her, barely, he'd managed to get to a vile of holy water and uncap it before she reached him. Her screams echoed around the empty lot as it splashed and sizzled on her skin.

Merton knocked her away from him as she screamed and reached for a stake and a cross, glad that he'd started carrying all the items in his coat pockets. When she tried to grab him again he shoved the cross in her face, burning her more and slammed the stake into her heart. She disintegrated and he hit the ground, the stake was gone, leaving him with the cross in his hand and covered in vamp dust.

He sighed and stood, brushing the debris from his pants. “Great. Our new town has vampires, just what I didn't need.” Merton shook his head and got into his car. He was going to need more stakes...and a discount card from one of the Christian Bookstores, he had shopping to do.

xxx

By the time he got home it was dinner time, so he stashed his purchases in his room and joined the family for the evening meal. Then he practically dragged Becky back to his rooms.

“What is your problem Freaker?”

“Nothing, just almost got eaten by a vampire this evening. Here.” He shoved the smaller shopping bag at her. “I stopped by one of the churches on the way home and had a priest bless them all.”

Becky gave him a strange look as she pulled out a cross on a chain, followed by a pair of dangling cross earrings. “Is that an ankle bracelet too?”

“Yeah, just promise me you'll wear one of them every day Beckster.”

She narrowed her eyes at him. “You really saw a vampire?”

“My stake disintegrated when I staked her.”

“Fine, I'll wear them.” She put the jewelry back in the bag. “Thanks...” And she left the apartment.

Merton sighed and collapsed onto his couch, reaching for the phone without even thinking about it. Before he realized what he was doing he was dialing Tommy's cell phone. It took a few rings but eventually a sleepy Tommy answered. “Ello?”

“Sorry Tommy...did I wake you?”

“Yeah...glad you did though.”

“Really?”

“Yeah, bad dream.”

“You okay?” Merton really wished he could be there with his mate.

“Yeah, I'm really glad to hear your voice Merton. How about you, are you okay?”

“Little shaken up.”

Tommy's voice was sharper then, more awake. “What happened?”

Merton sighed. “Sunnydale has vampires.”

“Crap. Did it hurt you?”

“No...I splashed her with holy water, which gave me time to get my stake out.”

Tommy's sigh of relief was almost a physical sensation as the sound of it washed over him. “I'm glad you're okay man.”

“Me too. Hey, how's school?”

“Made team captain.”

“Was there ever any doubt? How's Lori?”

“She's good, bored out of her mind because there have been no monsters to fight, but she's good. How about you?”

“First day is tomorrow.”

“Nervous?”

“A little.”

“You'll be fine babe. You've already made a couple of friends, right? That Jonathan guy...and what's his name?”

“Xander.”

“Yeah him...what kind of name is Xander anyway?”

Merton snorted. “I think its short for Alexander.”

There was a pause before Tommy whispered. “I miss you.”

“I miss you too Tommy.”

“Promise me you'll be careful?”

“Always, I even went to a Christian Bookstore and bought some new crosses. A local priest blessed everything I had for a donation of twenty bucks.”

“That's kind of weird.”

“A little.” Merton sighed. “I better go, we both need sleep, and I've got a big day tomorrow.”

“Yeah.”

“Love you.”

“Love you too buddy.”

xxx

It took Becky all of three seconds to lose him in the crowded hallway. Which he expected and didn't mind much, she was after all wearing the blessed cross earrings he'd bought her the night before. He found his classes easily enough, and amazingly none of the jocks had targeted him, or the cheerleaders. Merton decided not to question his luck, less it turn bad, so he sought Jonathan out for lunch and went about his day.

He ran into Xander again, and was promptly introduced to Willow and her boyfriend Oz, which was an interesting meeting. Oz sort of looked at him, cocked his head to one side and even sniffed him a bit. Then shook his hand. Willow had looked at her boyfriend in curiosity before shaking his hand as well.

All day long he kept waiting for something unusual to happen, but by the time the last bell sounded he decided that his run in with the vampire last night must have been a fluke. Perhaps Sunnydale was more normal than Pleasantville after all.

xxx

A couple of days later Jonathan nearly ran him over in the hallway. “Merton! There you are! I've been looking all over for you!”

“I'm not that hard to find Jono. What's up?”

“There’s supposed to be this really cool party at Buffy's house tonight.”

Merton paused in thought...had he met anyone with that name? “Who?”

“You haven't met her, she got kicked out last year and has been in Juvie or something all summer, but she's home and her Mom is throwing a party. Everyone is going to be there.”

“And you're telling me because?”

Jonathan sort of paused, as if surprised by the question. “Err...it’s a chance to mingle with a lot of people. Xander, Willow and Oz will be there...Buffy is kind of their friend. Actually she's the girl that kind of sounds like your friend Lori.”

“That's just enough to pique my interest. You have the address?”

“Yep.”

“I'll pick you up then.”

“Thanks, this is gonna be so cool!” And Jonathan was off again.

xxx

“I can't believe we're already getting invited to parties.”

“Uh, Beck, I think it’s a pretty open invitation list. We weren't invited specifically.”

“Whatever, it’s our first party, don't embarrass me.”

“Is she always like this?” Jonathan asked from the back seat.

“Unfortunately, yes. It’s my fault really, I preformed one too many surgeries on her dolls when we were kids.”

“Freaker.”

“Ya see what I mean?” He stopped the car at the side of the street. “Is this it?”

Jonathan leaned forward and peered through the windshield. “I think so...roll the window down.” Merton gave him a look but rolled the window down, music drifted in from the house. “Yep, that's the Dingos.” He grinned. “We're in the right place.”

Becky scrunched up her nose. “The Dingos?”

Jonathan nodded as they got out of the hearse. “Dingos Ate My Baby. It’s a local band...actually Oz plays lead guitar for them. Have you met Devan yet?”

Becky jerked to face the shorter boy. “Devan McLeish? He is so dreamy!”

“That's him singing.”

And Becky was off like a shot. Merton glared at his friend. “And I didn't bring any pepper spray.”

“Come on Merton.”

xxx

Merton had to admit the party was pretty fun, the Dingos were awesome, and more than once he got dragged into the fray by a pretty girl, just another face in the crowd. Anonymous. Then the drama started and the music stopped. Evidently things were getting ready to come to a head with Buffy and her mom...and Buffy's friends. Quickly he located Becky.

“Time to leave?” She asked him, her whisper hopeful. “It’s not that cool anymore.”

“As soon as we grab Jonathan.” He gripped her hand and she went willingly with him toward the chips and dip where Jonathan was still snacking despite the drama. At least until...Buffy? The pretty blond in the pink outfit put him on the spot.

Jonathan shook his head at the blond. “No thanks. I'm good.”

Merton shook his head and grabbed his friend by the arm. “Nice Jono. Come on.”

“But I'm not done.”

Merton ignored him and slowly pulled Jonathan and Becky away from the center of Sunnydale's latest Drama. He saw a crowd of people walking toward the house when he passed a window. “Great, more party-goers.”

“You think they'll start fighting?” Jonathan whispered. “I've seen Buffy hurt foot ball players before.”

“All the more reason to--” The windows smashed inward...and suddenly the house was filled with...”Zombies?” He yanked Becky away from one particularly gnarly corpse.

“What do we do?” She yelled at him, fear coloring her face and voice.

“We hide!” He yelled back, continuing to pull them along. “Try that door!”

Jonathan did as instructed. “Basement!”

“Go go go!” And down they went, Merton shut the door behind them. “Hit the lights!”

“Got it!” Jonathan managed to flip a switch even has Merton dragged them down the stairs.

“Merton!” Becky cried out. “The door!”

He shuddered. The zombies were already banging on the door. There had to be something. “What do we have to work with...bleach...detergent...fabric softener....salt!” The door was wrenched off its hinges. “Get over here now!”

Jonathan and Becky all but clung to him, and he opened the first container of salt and started to pour it around them in a circle. “Freaker what are you doing?”

“Trying to stay alive!” He started a second circle, this one closer to them.

Jonathan gulped as the zombies clamored down the stairs and approached them. Merton finished the second circle and waited, not even daring to breathe. The zombies shambled around them, circling them...but never crossing the lines of salt. Jonathan shivered. “How did you know?”

Merton let out a sigh of relief. “Didn't you ever watch Hocus Pocus? Besides salt has been used in protective rites for hundreds of years.”

“What do we do now?” Becky asked her hand over her nose to block the stench.

“Pray? Hope someone can put the zombies to rest? I don't exactly have my ancient Aramaic scroll with me...also I didn't raise these zombies so there's no guarantee I'd be able to put them back in the ground even if I did have the scroll with me.”

Jonathan and Becky gave him matching looks of shock; it was Jonathan however that asked the question. “You've raised zombies before?”

Merton shrugged. “Not on purpose...and not just zombies...there was an incident with a lesser Egyptian Pharaoh.”

Becky shifted a bit. “We just had to move to a town as weird as Pleasantville...can't we like just throw the salt at them?”

Merton bit his lip I thought. “I'd rather stay inside the protective circle if you don't mind.”

“What if no one can get rid of them?” Becky asked him.

“Well...I can try the chant...I think I remember it. But don't get mad if even more zombies show up.” They nodded and he took a calming breath. “Kayla marod ya balac marod.” Amazingly the zombies shuddered and began to fade into nothingness. “Huh...it worked. Kayla Marod ya balac marod!” And the zombies in the basement fully disappeared.

“Wow...”

Merton nodded in agreement. “You guys stay here; I'll see what I can do to help.” He gave them his best glare. “Don't leave the circle.” Becky and Jonathan nodded in agreement and he made his way back up the stairs...salt canister clutched tightly in his hands.

The first thing he saw was the Librarian and a pretty brunette holding off a handful of the undead. “Get back!” He yelled at them as he dashed the salt on the zombies. The undead shrieked in pain and fear. Then they started toward him.

“Run!” Giles ordered.

Instead Merton remained calm, mostly. “Kayla Marod ya balac marod!” Like before the zombies shuddered and flailed. “Kayla Marod ya balac marod!” The repetition caused them to fade away. Giles and the girl stared at him.

“What was that?” The girl asked, lowering her weapon...a ski pole?

“Was that Aramaic?”

“Yep.”

There was a flash of light outside somewhere, and everything became very quiet. Xander and Willow, and Buffy's mom came downstairs, cautiously. As Buffy and Oz came inside Merton somehow sensed a Hallmark moment in the making and stepped back to give them a moment. In fact while Buffy and Willow were hugging Xander apparently noticed he was trying to sneak away.

“Merton? Why are you holding salt?”

So much for sneaking away. “Well...traditionally salt is a good deterrent against a multitude of supernatural entities, including zombies.”

The others looked to Giles for conformation, the librarian nodded. “He is correct.”

“Yeah, he totally saved us with it. Then he said some weird mumbo jumbo and the zombies attacking us like totally disappeared.”

Merton sighed. “So...does this happen often?”

The girl in pink... who had to be Buffy, eyed him suspiciously. “That depends...what do you think just happened?”

He snorted. “I think a horde of flesh eating zombies attacked us and crashed your party.”

Giles cleared his throat. “Merton, Zombies don't eat the flesh of the living.”

He raised a brow in a sort of 'oh really' expression. “Obviously this wasn't my first horde of zombies, and they do crave brains if you raise them with a chant used by Mesopotamian royalty written in ancient Aramaic.”

Giles blinked at him, and slowly nodded. “Fair enough...I don't think I want to know how you know that. Good work by the way, your pronunciation was spot on. Where on earth did you find such a scroll?”

“Thanks and eBay... Also in my defense I wasn't trying to raise the dead when it happened.” He grimaced. “If the coast is clear I'm going take my sister and Jonathan home now...unless you want some help cleaning up?”

“That would lovely.” A woman, in her thirties he thought, smiled at him. “I'm Joyce Summers by the way, your hostess for the evening.”

“Merton Dingle. I'll just go get Becky and Jono now.”

Willow gave him horrified eyes. “You left your sister alone in the middle of a zombie attack?”

“No. We hid in the basement and I poured out two salt circles to protect us...and then I said the Aramaic chant. Had to use it twice, I guess because they were raised by a different source.”

Xander grinned at him. “Hey Merton, welcome to SunnyHell.”

Merton rolled his eyes. “Feels just like home. Don't suppose you guys have had any run-ins with body jumpers or Egyptian mummies? Human-eating spider people?”

There was a round of amused smiles, and a couple of gaping mouths. Lovely.

XXX
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