I challenge anyone who dares to write a ficlet for after the end. I will NOT continue writing this, though if you want to write a 'chapter two' or so of your own, you are free to do so.
I do not own BTVS.The Wish 1987
Xander stared into the unblinking eyes of his sister, somehow it remained unbroken even as people pulled him away from her body.
“Jessie!” He cried.
And at Age 7, he learned what death was.
Nearby, his parents were being held for questioning by the police, while a young woman held him close.
Willow sighed as Xander talked to his invisible friend, Jessie, although his odd pausing every so often was convincing enough that if she were a certain kind of kid, she’d believe that he really had an invisible friend only he could hear, and those pauses where said friend, talking back.
As it was, she didn’t believe in that stuff, thanks to her own parents method of raising her. The telling her that the Easter Bunny doesn’t exist, Santa Claus is every other parent teaching their kids to lie to their kids when they grow up kind of thing.
Xander turned, and smiled and jumped into the arm of a neighbour, who was away most of the time on business. “Hallie!”
Hallie smiled, and waved to Willow, then looked curiously over willow’s shoulder, then back at Xander.
“Where have you been, Halfrek?”
D'Hoffryn was frustrated with the woman, for decades she’d randomly disappear several times a month, or once in a particular month but be gone for as much as two weeks. Most of his order wouldn’t get away with it, but Halfrek was one of his few favourites, and that came with some perks.
He frowned. “I thought I told you the Hellmouth was off limits.”
“You did, for wish granting. I wasn’t there to grant any wishes.”
He knew the effect that the hellmouth had on wishes.
His Wish-granting order were rather a mixed sort. He had so-called, ‘light aligned’ ones in the order, as well as the darker ones like Anyanka. Halfrek was the rare one who did both. But perhaps it was because she had been in the unenviable position to have been a Wronged Child, and later the mother to a Wronged Child, before she’d taken the position. She’d hated her parents, and then her former husband. She’d on her own, made a wish and then granted it herself, through latent magical power. Indeed, it was similar enough to how he recruited Anyanka – for whom it was far more intentional than the accidental granting that happened with Halfrek, that he’d gone down and offered her a job as a Justice demon.
Sometimes, Justice meant pain and misery at similar or greater levels to Anyanka’s more moderate granted wishes. Sometimes it just meant a trip to a jail for thirty days. Unlike Anyanka, Halfrek was more concerned with interpreting wishes to make it both come true yet in ways the people affected deserved, where Anyanka was more concerned with interpreting wishes to make sure the most people suffered, not caring that often, the woman wishing was caught in the pain and misery to follow.
Oddly, the two were friends, even though everything about how they operated said that they should hate the other... Anyanka thinking halfrek was a ‘goodie two shoes’, to use modern phrases, while halfrek thinking anyanka was a vindictive cow with no regard for the lives of others.
They both knew how the other operated, how the other thought, and if anything it made them close friends.
The one thing they couldn’t agree on, however, was Sunnydale.
Anyanka couldn’t imagine going anywhere and not granting wishes, especially on such a demonic hotspot, where wishes would cause more harm than intended. The right wish could even remove all men from reality if granted directly on the hellmouth.
And as a male, perhaps that is why he forbid, at first just Anyanka, then all the others, from ever granting any wish on or near the hellmouth.
Even after six hundred years, he still hated the reminder of when Anyanka granted a wish that “all men would know what it was like to be women for a month.”
It still made him check he had balls when he got up on a morning. And that he didn’t have breasts whenever he had backache. Lord was those melons heavy.
Shame the experience was forgotten by human men the day it ended.
Back to the matter at hand, though...
“Is... is this about the boy?”
Halfrek didn’t look him in the eye, and nodded.
“I don’t know why you’re so obsessed with him.”
“I Am NOT obsessed!” Halfrek shot back. “Remember, you’ve met him, you’ve felt his aura, you could feel that he, more than the damned hellmouth, is a nexus... He needs to... to be protected.”
“That’s what you’re doing?”
For some reason, he felt there was more to it, even if that was a genuine reason it couldn’t be the only one.
“You are correct, he is a nexus. But one that could destroy us, our way, and a whole lot more.”
“I’ve seen it.” Halfrek revealed. “I... I’ve seen why he’s a nexus. But the corrupting nature of the Hellmouth... combined with that reason? No seer can predict what will happen. Not unless they know him... like I do.”
He understood now.
So he let her continue.
Xander stared at the gravestone.
Willow and Jessie were at school, probably wondering what happened to him.
But the fact that those two got along had started to make him... question things. Like how his ‘invisible friend’ wasn’t invisible anymore. And like how he was even there, when it started as a drug-induced delusion when the doctors were worried about his depression, when....
He read the faded lines.
‘Here lies Jessica Harris, Beloved Sister’.
Not ‘Beloved Daughter and sister’, just ‘sister’.
“Thought I’d find you here.”
He turned, and saw Hallie slowly walking over to him.
“Where were you?” He asked hesitantly.
“Working. Sorry I didn’t get to even visit...”
And with that, she held him as he cried, for a lost sister, for lost friends at school who had disappeared and he seemed to be the only one to notice, that apparently his delusion-induced friend had been turned real because he’d kept up the charade to cheer himself up, for way way too long.
Silently, she brought him to her car – she didn’t need it, except to maintain the appearance of... well, of being normal, but it was something of a guilty pleasure.
She knew how much he liked the part of the sunnydale’ forrest that wasn’t in sunnydale, mainly because the far end of it from the hellmouth was untouched by the corrupting energies, and that it ended on a hill with a parking spot that provided a lovely view of sunrise. The symbolism of which was not lost on her, considering the primary demonic denizen of sunnydale.
So that was where she took him, although it was not the right time for sunrise.
Finally, they got to the spot, and again she found herself holding an upset Xander.
“Rose, Willow’s sister died last week.” He told her.
“I’m sorry. How is willow dealing?”
He sniffed. “Already forgotten. It’s Jessica all over again.” Hallie nodded slowly. “They don’t know why I’m upset all the time... Jessie even said that, ‘come on dude, cheer up, its not like your girlfriend died’. Who says that?!”
Honestly, she wondered how much of the hellmouth had a hand in shaping ‘Jessie’s personality. She’d seen the figure evolve from being invisibile to everyone except her, through to even Xander, to everyone seeing him. The boy was quite the stalker of Cordelia Chase, Prankster when it came to teachers, and all around general nuisance and bad influence.
Somehow, Willow hadn’t been affected... and Xander somehow remained friends with the human-form poltergeist, despite not liking most of the things disparaging remarks.
“And don’t get me started on mom and dad.” He slunk even further into her arms. “Since I told them about Rose, they just dove into drink again... No one cares.”
“I care.” She spoke, softly.
“I wish you were my mum.” He mumbled.
Her eyes widened, and suddenly she was very aware that D’Hoffryn’s order not to grant wishes was about sunnydale... and though technically this spot was part of the sunnydale forrest, therefore within sunnydale, the actual legal, as well as ahellmouth boundaries (both identical) stopped a few hundred metres away.