None Timeline/Authors Notes:
BTVS: Set just after Welcome to the Hellmouth. Supernatural - pre-series by about 8 years. I'm keeping to the original timelines. Also, contains mostly secondary characters.Disclaimer:
I own nothing. Buffy and Angel people belong to Joss and Mutant Enemy. Supernatural belongs to Eric KripkeNotes:
This was written as part of the 2013. August fic-a-day challenge. I intend to post of a majority of the fics I write in one "fic", but this one will be continued after the challenge is over, so I want to keep it separate.
Xander waits until Willow is suitably distracted before he puts his game face on and lies his heart out. There's a part of him that wishes Willow knew what he was doing, because then she'd insist on coming and he wouldn't be alone, and he wouldn't feel like complete shit
all the time.
But Willow, with possibly the exception of Buffy, is the worst liar he knows... and there's no way in hell she'd be able to lie. Not about this, not like
this. So Xander makes up his first lie of the afternoon to tell his bestest bud (an obvious one, which he knows will make Willow think that he's trying to get out of research) and sets out for his real destination. The one she can't know about.
To be honest, Xander's a little surprised no one has mentioned anything. Although, he's pretty sure Giles has got enough on his plate with a new Slayer, and Buffy has enough on her plate with the Hellmouth and all, and Will... Well, Will probably doesn't want
to think about this. Xander sure as hell doesn't, but he has to because if he doesn't there will be far too much attention drawn to them. After all, no one other than the Scooby Gang knows that Jesse is really dead. Everyone else thinks Jesse ran away from home.
When he reaches the McNally home, he's a little surpised to see the drive and front yard filled with cars he's never seen before. He almost turns around and heads home, but he can't. Mrs McNally knows
how much Jesse means - meant - to him and a few cars aren't enough to keep him from "looking" for his best friend.
So Xander has no choice. He takes a deep breath before he knocks, but there's no immediate answer. He can hear a few voices inside and he thinks that maybe no one heard him. He's ready to knock again when the door swings open. A man Xander's seen more in pictures than in real life is standing in the doorway, looking like hell. The man stares at Xander thoughtfully for a minute, before recognition lights his eyes. "Xander?"
"Hey Mr Harvelle," Xander greets Jesse's father. The sperm donor,
Jesse always called him whenever his dad let him down (which was a lot, and why Jesse took his step-dad's name). Personally, Xander tries not to call Mr Harvelle anything. The man intimidates the hell out of him.
"I thought I told you to call me Bill?" he says, opening the door for Xander to come inside.
Xander shrugs and enters the house. He makes it one step into the living room before he freezes. It's full
of people he's never met before, most of them gathered around the coffee table, looking at what he's pretty sure is a map of Sunnydale. He stares at them for a second, before he turns back to Mr Harvelle. "Maybe I should come back tomorrow?" He's not sure why, but he's got a really bad feeling about this.
He's pretty sure it's because most of the men looking at the map are just as scary as Jesse's sperm donor.
Xander closes his eyes and silently curses at the sound of Mr McNally's voice. His opportunity of a strategic escape has just vanished. Damn him and his lack of Slayer speed. Slowly, he turns around and faces Mrs McNally. She's standing just in the kitchen doorway, her eyes red. Behind her is an African American woman, holding Mrs McNally's hand tightly, and studying Xander with a scrutiny that's making him more than a little uncomfortable.
In fact, the entire room is now studying at him in a way that's making him more than a little uncomfortable.
He really shouldn't be here. "I'm sorry Mrs McNally, I didn't realise you were busy..."
"No, Xander, it's fine," Mrs McNally assures him. "Actually, it's good that you're here. Jesse's father brought a few of his... colleagues to help with the search. They have a few questions about Jesse's last movements before he disappeared."
Yep, he really
shouldn't be here. It's bad enough coming here everyday and printing flyers... pretending that he doesn't know exactly where his best friend isn't
Mrs McNally continues on, completely oblivious to the way all the blood drains from Xander's face. "Missouri," she gesters to the woman beside her, "will most likely have some questions too."
Xander shakes his head, trying to fight the guilt that rips through him. It was easy to lie to Mrs McNally and the police. Really it was. It's amazing the sort of assumptions people make when you nod and make a few vague comments, especially in Sunnydale. But these people aren't from Sunnydale. He's pretty sure, just by looking Mr Harvelle's friends, that they're already smarter than the Sunnydale PD. He wants to call Giles, he wants to run, admit that he's too upset to talk about it, but he...
"It's okay, sugar."
The gentle southern voice startles Xander out of his panic and he's surprise to see Missouri standing in front of him, her eyes full of tears.
Missouri turns to the people standing around the coffee table. "John, why don't you take Alison here and make her a cup of tea?"
The man, John, frowns and looks as though he's about to argue but, to Xander's amusement, Missouri beats him to it.
"You open your mouth, John Winchester, and there'll be hell to pay." She turns back to Mrs McNally. "John will get you a cup of tea. I'll take care of Xander for you."
Xander contemplates making a dash for it while everyone's distracted (because asking Mrs McNally to leave is a really
bad sign), but Missouri clamps her hand around his wrist.
"Don't you even think about trying it, sugar," she tells him after Mrs McNally has disappeared. "These men here will hunt you down like the monsters you wish you didn't know existed."
Everyone in the room, including Xander, freezes. What?!
"Missouri? What are you doing?" Mr Harvelle asks, sounding partly annoyed and partly... scared? Xander frowns. It's almost as if...
Missouri doesn't take her eyes from Xander as she speaks. "This boy here knows."
"I do?" Xander blurts out in a last ditch effort to play dumb. How does she know?
"Of course you do," she says gently, "and it's eating you up, lying all the time, and there aren't enough vampires in the world for you to stake to take the pain away."
Xander's blood runs cold. There's no way in hell he can pretend anymore. She knows
. "How do you..."
"I'm psychic," she explains. "Jesse's daddy asked me to come here to see if I could read anything from the house, but that abomination underneath your school blocks almost everything."
"Wait! Vampires?" Mr Harvelle moves to stand next to them. "Xander knows about the supernatural? Do you know what happened to my son?"
Xander turns to his best friend's father, his game face gone, and utters what feels like the first honest thing he's said in days.