Obligatory Disclaimer: Don't own either Buffy or Bioshock Infinite. Neither am I making anything from writing this. It's simply self-indulgence. Sit back, relax, and I hope you enjoy the read.
Authors Note: This is just a quick something I had to get out after learning about the Bioshock Infinite story. The idea plagued me in my dreams the other night and I just had to write it down.
“We need an answer Mr. Harris. Yes…”
“.. or no?”
Xander stood there dumbfounded as he looked between the man and woman standing in his basement. He knew something weird was going on; Hellmouth-weird. This just proved it.
For the past week, as Xander was going about his life, he kept seeing the same two people all around town. For the most part, he wouldn’t have even noticed it were it not for the fact that the pair was dressed in turn of the century clothes. It seemed as though Sunnydale syndrome was in affect here too as no one seemed to notice the oddly dressed duo with the exception of him.
The first time he saw them, they were in the Sunnydale Mall looking in an electronics store. Afterwards, when he was leaving, Xander noticed them again at a construction site sitting on a girder suspended from a crane. The next day, the duo were dancing a waltz in one of the towns many parks. Stranger still, he could have sworn while on patrol he saw them again having a midnight picnic in one of the graveyards.
Every day, several times each, he kept seeing this pair all around town. He tried to point this out to the others but every time he turned his gaze back to where they were they had disappeared. Giles was polishing his glasses, concerned, when they last spoke about his observation. He didn’t think it meant anything supernatural that Xander kept seeing these people in town. They could simply be a new couple who moved to Sunnydale who happened to prefer the wardrobe of a certain time period. Willow and Buffy kept giving him pitying looks as though he was going through a mental breakdown; seeing demons and witches everywhere.
Tonight, Xander opted out of patrol. The others, despite their attempts to hide it, looked relieved that he was going to take it easy for the evening. He hadn’t seen the pair at all today and he admitted to himself that it was a little concerning. He was grateful, as he unlocked the door to his home, that his parents decided to take their drinking to the bar tonight. All he wanted was to unwind and rest. Unfortunately, he quickly realized that wasn’t going to happen as he heard from the top of the basement stairs two voices coming from his room. They had a bit of an upper-class tone to them; one male, one female.
“I can’t believe one could live in such squalor in this day and age”, commented the woman.
“Well, he is a young bachelor.”
“Living in his parents’ basement.”
“What the hell are you doing down here?” Xander interrupted the bickering duo. As they turned to face him, Xander shook his head in dismay. It was the pair he kept seeing.
“Ah, Mr. Harris. Right on time.”
“Is he right on time or are we?”
“I suppose you could make an argument for both.”
“You should be more concise with your statements.”
“Well it’s not needed as the statement is valid for either point.”
“Ahem.” Xander coughed loudly to get their attention. Once they stopped, he continued. “What are you doing here?”
“They always ask ‘what’ as though it would fully answer everything. The proper question to ask is ‘why’.”
After a few seconds of silence, Xander pinched the bridge of his nose. Is this how the G-man felt when dealing with the Scoobies?
“Alright then, why
are you here?”
“To speak with you, of course.”
“We wish to make a proposition to you. Something we feel that you would agree to.”
“It had taken us quite a while to find a suitable person for the task and we eventually stumbled upon you, Mr. Harris.”
“You possess a quality that makes you perhaps the best choice for this task.”
Xander felt like he was watching a tennis match the way his head kept swiveling back and forth between the two. “And what quality would that be?”
“You’re a prophesy-breaker.”
“You need me to stop a prophesy?”
“Not a prophesy, as such.”
“But a prophet for certain.”
“You have other qualifications, of course; ‘The White Knight’ and ‘The One Who Sees’.”
“But your label as a prophesy-breaker is what we’re putting stock in.”
“No one has called me ‘The One Who Sees’.”
“Not yet, in any case.”
“But that’s neither here nor there.”
Xander sat heavily in a nearby chair. This conversation has quickly gone in a direction he never assumed. “Are you sure you’re talking to the right person. Maybe you’d want Buffy instead?”
“The Slayer is quite skilled in fighting and defending. However, those you would be opposing are human and that would perhaps make her hesitate when more drastic measures need to be taken.”
“There was one other we had decided. Though the current track record he has isn’t as promising as I would have liked.”
“He has failed one hundred and twenty two times.”
“Yet he progressed further with each attempt.”
“One hundred and twenty two times.”
“Which is why my dear sister thought it was time to try someone new.”
Xander ran a hand through his hair. This was getting ridiculous. “So, your first draft pick didn’t measure up and you’ve made me second string. Fine, whatever. You still didn’t mention why you think I’d agree to stop this prophet other than calling me some names.”
“There’s a reason. One you’ve been fighting for all these years and will continue to do so for many more.”
With that cryptic answer, the man reaches into an inside pocket of his jacket and holds out a picture. Xander stands and reaches out to take it. It’s an old back-and-white photo of a young woman, probably around 18. She was, in a word, beautiful. The name Elizabeth was written in the top left corner.
“One reason,” the woman continued in a slightly softer tone. “that your heart can’t turn away from. Save the girl.”
“We need an answer, Mr. Harris. Yes…”
“.. or no?”
Xander stood there dumbfounded as he looked between the man and woman standing in his basement. He knew something weird was going on; Hellmouth-weird. This just proved it. He knew they weren’t normal humans but that wasn’t exactly something to hold against them. They wanted him to stop a prophet and, from the sounds of it, his followers using perhaps ‘permanent’ means. And, really, how could their first pick fail a rescue over 100 times? You’d think after the first five someone would have clued in to what was going on. But as he looked down at the picture Xander had to admit to himself, deep down, that he knew what his answer was going to be.
“What do you need me to do?”