Chapter 1 (revised 5/9/13)
NaNo for the month of April 2013
Over the years, I have seen references to NaNo (National Novel Month) this year after seeing a post by two of my favorite fan fiction author’s (Keira Marcos and Voracity) I have decided to submit my own humble bit to this event. My goal is not so much as to be able to finish a novel in this time frame as to just start writing again. As time has gone by it seems I have let life and problems sap away at all the little things I use to enjoy doing. Perhaps this will be one of the first steps in changing that around.Author’s Standard Disclaime
r: I do not own any of the characters, movies, TV shows, books, comics, Anime, cartoons, music or other copy righted materials used in this fan fiction. No money, jewels, gold or other monetary assets were gain from the writing of this fan fiction. All works are have not been edited by individuals other than myself, expect spelling errors, grammar errors and possible random rants in odd directions.
The author is also not a profuse writer and suffers from ADD, she really misses her sanity some days.Note: This is a story I pulled out of my WIP file originally titled Traveler.
It it seems familar it is because I did post this under my Bunnyville file on Twisting the Hellmouth (prior to deletion) and Imagine: This List,under the pen name Samsas.Story Note:
Some lines were taken verbatim from the tv script of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Episode 18 titled Halloween. Written by: Carl Ellsworth.
The halls of the Sunnydale High school were decorated in shades of orange and black for all saints eve. Xander absently wondered if it was normal for schools placed as much intenseness on the holiday, or perhaps it was just another aspect of the Sunnydale syndrome? After all in a town infested with demons and other supernatural threats, Halloween was the one time of year residents actually didn't have to fear the dark. Giving a mental shrug he figured it was one of those things he would have to think about asking Giles about. The school hallways were buzzing with students as they moving to and from classes. A long table has been set up with signs that announcing.
"VOLUNTEERS ARE WINNERS" and "SAFE AND SANE HALLOWEEN."
A few kids were sitting behind the fold out table with signup sheets. Silently he groaned as he caught sight of Principle Snyder prowling the busy hallway, winching as he watched him grab an unsuspecting girl on her way to class.“Hey!”“You're volunteering.”“But I have to get to class-“
Ignoring her protests he steers the reluctant kid up to the sign-up table. His hopes however of sneaking by the troll unnoticed were dashed as Willow's curiosity once again over road common sense. Watching as she stops in the middle of the hallway to observe the scene with all the self preservation of a Lemming.“The Mayor must be really pushing the volunteer safety program for Halloween this year."
It was a well known fact inside their group that Principle Snyder was one of the Mayor's toadies. For Snyder to have such an interest in the after school program, reeks of the Mayors influence. Readjusting his shoulder bag in hidden irritation, Xander shuffled few steps ahead, while trying to mentally will his two companions to keep moving.
“Note his interesting take on the "volunteer" concept.”
He remarked dryly, trying to drop a subtle hint or two that it was time vacate the local premises ASAP. Only to mentally bang his head as Buffy joined Willow in watching the sign up desk. Lemmings... Lemmings!!“What's the deal?”
Xander sighed before answering, his plans worked so much better when other people cooperated.
“A bunch of little kids need people to take them trick-or-treating. Sign up and you get your very own pack of sugar hyped runts for the night-“
Turning towards him, the faintly horrified expression on Buffy’s face clearly portrayed her thought on that matter.
“Yikes. I'll stick to vampires-“
Xander’s eyes widen slightly in horror as the fate he had been trying to avoid befell them. In the form of a very familiar hand landing on Buffy's shoulder. A hand that belong to none other than their high school arch nemesis, Principle Snyder a.k.a. the Troll.“Ms. Summers, just the juvenile delinquent I've been looking for.”
Buffy stiffen and he could clearly see the “Oh Crap” moment as it passed through her mind, before she plastered on a perky smile that never reached her eyes.“Principal Snyder-“
She chirped out brightly, as she turned only to be interrupted.
“Halloween must be a big night for you, huh? Tossing eggs. Keying cars. Bobbing for apples. One pathetic cry for help after another. Well. Not this year, missy.”
Bobbing for apples? Xander mouth silently in amusement.
As Principle Snyder all but manhandled her up to the signup table, Buffy casted a bewildered and pleading look at the duo. Earning a small squeak from Willow as she hastily followed the two. Xander reluctantly trailed behind them, he had a bad, bad feeling about this. Up ahead he could hear Buffy’s voice as she tried to unsuccessfully talk her way out of the situation.“Gosh, I'd love to volunteer but I recently developed... carpal tunnel syndrome and, tragically, I can no longer hold a flash light“
Xander could swear he heard a musical ~Wa Wa Waaaaaaa~ as he face palms.
Principle Snyder is not convinced or amused and merely hands her a pen and points at the sign up sheet.“Costumes are mandatory.”“The program starts at four and the children have to be returned to the school by six thirty."
Xander stiffens as he suddenly finds Willow and himself under the beady eye stare of the Principle, oh boy."That goes for you two also."
~Wa Wa Waaaaaaa~ yep he definitely heard it that time.
By end of the week it took everything Xander could do not to scream in frustration. The source of his current mood was sitting two rows in front of him. He watched as his two best female friends once again tilted their heads together, obviously conspiring based upon the hushed whispers and giggles. Oh, he wasn't angry at them for once again leaving him the odd man out. No, It had more to do with the overheard bits and pieces of their conversations, centering on Buffy’s intentions of trying to impress Angel, a.k.a brood boy, dead boy or that undead pervert in Xander's mind.
Hello, can you say pedifile?! He had done some quite research on the 242 year old cursed master vampire once known as Liam O'Connor. According to the Watcher's files the Irish man had been 26 at the time at his turning. While alive Liam had been the eldest son of a wealthy family, noted for his drinking, wenching and fighting ways.
Color him unsurprised at uncovering that bit of information and the little he had learned of Angelus had turned his stomach. Now that perverted bastard was sniffing around Buffy, by his own confession since she was 15 for gods sake! If his sorry arse had been human, he would have been in jail faster than you can say Jack Robinson. Yet it was Buffy's own lolita attitude and apparent necrolagnia attraction to the vampire and made him quickly reevaluate his own attraction to the blond slayer.
~Shudders in aversion ~
As the bell rang signaling class change, he slipped the finished math assignment into the calculus book flipping it closed and shoving it back into his back pack. Willow might despair about his study habits and his teachers nag about his lack of application but it wasn't as if he actually had the time or peace to do school work at home. Between his parents nightly drunken fights, the hours after school he put in working at his Uncle Roy’s junk yard and then patrol at night. He was dam well proud with the solid C’s he received in his AP classes. Shuffled out of the room, his spirits uplifted with the thoughts of having a free afternoon off work and just two more classes and then sweet, sweet freedom. Spinning the last digit on the combination lock Xander looked up as his name was called."Xander?"
A smile tugging the edges of his mouth as he found Willow standing there hugging her book bag. The smile faltered however at the determinedly nervous look she was currently sporting. Ohhhh~~ resolve face."Give me just a sec Wills."
Quickly he stuffed his books into the locker and closing and locking the door."OK I'm all ears, what got you so riled up?"
he teased, giving her his full attention.
Giving her lip a nervous bite, Willow gathered a deep breath and look her oldest friend straight in the eye."You are."'Wa..What?"
At his startled look she reached out with a sigh and grabbed his arm."Come on mister you and me need to have a little talk."
Sitting off to a corner of the student courtyard. Willow took a bit of time to look over her friend. He looked tired, there were dark rings under his eyes showing her he hadn't been sleeping well again."Xander
" she asked softly."What's going on with you?"
Not surprise when he wouldn't meet her eyes."Nothing Wills, everything fine."
Liar she thought."No it's not. You changed Xander"
she voice dropped a bit."When Jesse died you became a bit more hard and you don't laugh as much any more. Oh you joke and fool around but you don't laugh."
Taking a deep breath."You know it's not your fault don't you? The vampire was no more Jesse than I am. It's not your fault and it's not Buffy's either."
Xander froze this wasn't what he had expected at all, conflicting emotions flickered through him. It had been almost a year, logically he knew but inside was another story. His voice was decided rough when he replied."I know Wills, Jesse died when Darla turned him."
he stopped unable to go on.
Willow promoted."It's not her fault either."
Shaking his head."Then why have you been acting like it is?"
Making him look up at her sharply, resolve Willow resolve you can do this."How?""You pick on her relationship with Angel."
Ignoring the snort that comment got from him, she plowed on."You get all distant and snarky when she talks to you lately. I think you forgotten that Buffy outside of all the mystical kick-butting powers is still like the rest of us, you know girls. We worry about every thing from the way we look, to SAT's and boyfriends."
Blushing at the word, which Xander caught with surprised at that tidbit of information."Sometimes it feels impossible that you will ever find someone who's right for you and that your right for them. For Buffy it's even harder with her being"
Willow pausing to look around the busy court yard before continuing cautiously in case there were any listening ears."Who she is but with Angel that doesn't matter. She can be herself and umm share her hobbies and other interests with him. I know you get all wiggy about Angel's condition but you can't help who you love Xander."
Standing up she patted his shoulder."Just think about it alright?"
Xander watched with mixed feeling as Willow walked away.“Hey Dweeb!”
Joy, his day was now complete. Looking over to his right caught sight of Cordelia Chase standing on the walkway with her gaggle of Cordets behind her. Throwing her a questioning look and waited patiently to see what the Queen B of Sunnydale High wanted this time.“Geeze what is it with you losers, can’t you even manage a simple greeting?”
to the snickers of the girls behind her.
Rolling his eyes.“And------“
He drawled sarcastically“What do we owe the honor of your presence today?”
Earning a vicious and decidedly catty smile in return.
“Heard through the grapevine that your little group of rejects got drafted by Snyder for this year’s Halloween escort detail. It’s just too bad you’re going to miss the best Halloween party of the year.”
Pausing she tapped a perfectly manicured finger nail against her lips.“Oh wait, that’s right you weren't invited!”“Yeah, yeah, yeah yuck it up, was there anything else?”
“No have fun with that, although I can’t wait to see what kind of lame costume you come up with this year."
Giving his current outfit of an old Hawaiian shirt over a baggy black tee, faded blue jeans, and well scuffed up tennis shoes a scornful look."However considering what you normally wear twerp, anything else would be a vast improvement."
Turning she flounce off among her giggling gaggle of followers, leaving him scowling at her retreating back.
Later that afternoon found him at casa de Harris rummaging through the attic and garage looking for anything that might have decent costume making potential. Cordelia earlier callus remark having hurt more than he had wanted to admit. He learned long ago to hide his true feeling and she was not the first nor the would be the last to throw his family status or lack of, back into his face. Glancing at the time he hurried his pace, wanting to be done before the parents got in. It was always a gamble at what type of mood they would be in, so the sooner he was done and out of sights the better. Unfortunately so far the only things he had found with some potential were a couple of pairs of faded and frayed green fatigue pants packed in a box with some other hunting gear. Along with a motley fuzzy grey raccoon shaped hunter cap, showcasing his one of his uncles more bizarre and in his option disturbing hobbies of taxidermy.
Poking the hat a couple of more time to ensure it was actually just a hat and not going to suddenly jump out and attack him. He packed everything back into the box and left with his meager finding. A few minutes later found him sitting on the edge of his bed in the basement, he held out the fatigues before him and looked them over with a critical eye. Who was he kidding!? With a dejected sigh he let them drop onto the floor and fell back on the bed with a small bounce. There was no way around it the fatigues were a total bust. Even if they were to survived a cleaning through the washer, which he severely doubted. There was no way the rotting threads he had spotted in the seams of the pants would hold up and that was one project his couldn't fix with his little travel sewing kit.
What to do, what to do, running a hand through his hair he turned his head to at look at out of ancient dilapidated wardrobe that served as his closet. Rolling to his feet he made his way over to doors and pulling them open, his eyes running over the slim offerings before falling on to an old canvas messenger bag tucked into one of the corners of the cabinet.
He paused for a moment before slowly reaching down and grabbing the satchel and making his way back to his bed. Sitting indian style against the head board, he settled the bag before him with a small sad smile and pulled loose the top flap. Nestled inside were several 9 ½ by 6 notebooks and a medley of miscellaneous items tucked away into the different nooks and crannies.
He could remembered the first time he had seen the beat up old bag years ago. Jesse had come running up to him before class waving it about and crying out “Behold the ultimate bag of holdings!” which had just caused Willow to shake her head and muttered. “Boys!”
She never did understand Jesse and his utter fascination throughout Jr. High with D&D, then World of Warcraft and other online mmorpg. Back then every minute of his free time seemed to be spent over at Jesse’s as they both praised and bemoaned the different aspects of their favorite games. In fact he was pretty sure they had pretty much driven Willow batty with their constant chatter, arguments and complaints about the different character classification, skills, point system of various games.
Until one day she had finally had enough and told them in exasperation if they had idea’s to make a better game, why didn't just go ahead and do it! Thus the beginning of Phantasticus was born and that just gave him an idea for Halloween.Authors Note: I had a couple of reviewers comment on the photos incorporated into this story (I was trying something new ^^) due to this I have removed all pics except for the one at the beginning of this page and on chapter 5.
MMORPG - Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game
D&D - Abbreviation of "Dungeons and Dragons" a book based fantasy role playing game.