Xander blinked and in that time all the memories of the balance demon and ever being human faded, to be replaced by new ones. A second passed and he was unaware that they were new. Memories of always being the way he looked now filled his head. Being found by the Harrises a little over twenty years ago, sitting next to his dead mother, little more than a bade, unable to even stand on his own.
Tony and Jessica took him and raised him in the basement of their home. Away from other people, as they feared what the government would do if they found out about the little alien. He'd grown slowly so when he was twelve, he still look like a four year old. It was at this point that he was finally able to leave the house to met other people. It had been halloween. That was when he met Willow and Jessie and even after they found out that his appearance was not a costume they remained his friends. They would come over every day after school. Willow would teach him everything she learnt that day and Jessie would play games with him.
Then Buffy came to town, she found out about him. Jessie died and they stopped the Master. Xander took that hard, Willow's and Jessie's minds had become as familiar to him as his own. He didn't know what to do without the reassuring touch of his friends mind. Willow, along with his new friends Buffy and Giles, tried to help him. But they couldn't, humans aren't psychic so they couldn't understand the additional pain he felt from losing that connection. Once he'd healed from that loss, they tried to find out what he was, without any success. So Xander starting hanging out at the library and helping out with the slaying as it turned out he was almost as strong as Buffy. All this filtered into everyones minds in the time it took Giles to take his next step.
'Even with the new...' Giles paused seemingly unable to come up with a tactful way to put into word what had happened that night. 'New information, I am still unable to ascertain what you may be,' he concluded. When Xander didn't respond he looked up from his book. To see Xander sitting at the table, staring at palm of his right hand as if it was a dangerous animal that might attack at any moment. It was hard to believe that Xander was nearing his mid twenties, when the young man looked no older than Buffy and Willow, he even looked at little younger at times. Times like now.
'Xander?" Giles said to get the young mans attention. Xander didn't look up when he replied.
'Ya know, I always wondered what this thing was for. I guess we know now,' He looked up then. 'I'm a monster.'
'It's not that bad,' Xander jumped up from his chair with a hiss. Giles ignore the hiss, as he'd learnt that it was an instinctive response to things that angered or frightened the young man.
'How can you say that!' The anger vanished to be replaced by a look of loss and dejection. 'I ate him, Giles. I'm no better than a vampire.' While Giles was still reeling from watching his old friend and rival age and die by the hand of this young man. Giles realised that Xander was in a far worse state seeing as he'd been the one that killed him. So as the adult in the situation he had to do his best to comfort obviously in pain young man.
'Lets not jump to conclusions. At this point we don't know what happened to Ethan.' Xander just gave him an unreadable look, before turning away.
'I can't eat,' Xander muttered as if revealing a great secret that he didn't really want to share.
'I beg your pardon?' Xander turned back in a swirl of dark clothing.
'I said, I can't eat food anymore!' and as if that had breeched a dam in all rushed out. 'I've tried to eat, but for the last few days I've just been throwing it back up. I was so hungry...' he trailed off unable to face the memory of the hunger that had ravaged his body for those days.
Giles blinked, that was indeed worrying. He sighed and removed his glasses before placing the book on the counter and moving towards the boy.
'I see, and how do you feel now?' Xander paused before answering.
'I feel... good, full... complete.' Xander turned his fear filled inhuman yellow slitered-pupiled eyes on him. 'What if... what if that's what I have to do now? What if...' Xander trailed off unable to finish that sentence, the idea was just to horrific. 'I don't want to kill people.' Giles gave him a reassuring smile, at least he hopped it was reassuring.
'And that is what makes you not a monster,' But it was clear from Xander's expression that he was not convinced. 'We shall have to learn to deal with this,'
'Deal with what!' Buffy demanded as entered the library at a dead run, causing the doors to swing wildly behind her. She frowned as she found that Giles and Xander were the only one's in the room. She was sure she'd felt something bad pinging on her slayer sense. Something that was showing up worse than the Master had. In fact it was still there, it was... Xander, she realised.
'What's going on, why is Xander suddenly giving me the wiggings?' Xander just points at her.
'See! Even she knows it, I'm a monster.'
'We've been over this mister, you are not a monster,' Willow said as she entered the library as a much more reasonable pace.
'Ah, Buffy, Willow, they have been some developments when it comes to Xander's condition.'
'What he's trying to say is that I really am a monster.'
'That is not what a meant.' Xander just shrugged.
Willow came marching up to him, looking angrier than Xander could even remember her being before and slapped him hard on the cheek. Xander stared at her, his eyes wide in shock. It wasn't that the slap hurt him. In fact it hadn't even made his head move even an inch. But it was the fact that it had been Willow, she had never hit him before.
'Stop being a stupid poopy-head. Just because you're not human doesn't make you a monster!'
'Wills, I killed someone.' Willow stared at him for a moment, before folding her arms over her chest.
'I don't care. You're still my Xander!' she said with a sharp nod to reaffirm her statement. Xander smiled, even though he could feel that she really did care, it was still nice to hear. Willow was suddenly in his arms, she buried her head in his chest.
'It's okay, we'll figure this out, you hear me, we will.' she said into his chest. Xander closed his arms around her, being careful not to let his right hand touch her in anyway. She continued muttering her reassurances. Xander was unsure if it was for him or for herself, but it was nice in any case to know that he hadn't lost his oldest friend.
Buffy had tensed when she heard Xander say that he'd killed someone and when Willow had gone to hug him she'd taken a step forwards. Only to be stopped when Giles placed a hand on her shoulder and shock his head.
'She is in no danger, Xander would never hurt her, you know this.' Yes, Buffy did know that. But with her instincts telling her to slay and his confession, she didn't know what to think.
'But he said he killed someone.' Unseen by either of them Xander tensed at those word, and was currently staring at them over the top of Willows head.
'Buffy, there is more to this than any of us understand. But right now he doesn't need a slayer, he needs his friend.' Buffy glanced at Giles then over at Xander, their eyes met and Buffy knew that this is the same Xander that she'd known for the last year. If she could work with a vampire with a soul than she could still work with Xander. Slayer instincts be damned. With her mind made up she walked over to the pair. Xander smiled as she joined in on the hug. It was good to have his queens.Well there you have it, the next chapter.
Hope you enjoyed it, if you did please review.