Author’s note: this is the sequel to ‘Fun and Games’, and the fourth instalment in this series. It won’t make a great deal of sense unless you’ve read the proceeding works, so I suggest you do.
This story is a Buffy, Angel and Gilmore Girls crossover. Sadly, I do not own these shows. Please don’t sue me for using them. This is set post-‘Chosen’ in Buffy, early season 5 for Gilmore Girls and just after ‘Lineage’ in Angel.
After Wesley left Sunnydale, he never had even the slightest inclination to keep in contact with anyone he’d met there. He had no illusions about how they remembered him. In fact, when he remembered what he had been like back then he cringed so hard that his face hurt.
That had changed, when he had found out that Fred had contacted Willow in order to enlist her help to resoul Angel. It had occurred to him that knowing what a Slayer, a powerful witch and her support group were up to was a very useful thing. Even if they remembered him as the most useless person on the face of the planet.
So, once he had become Head of Research and Intelligence at Wolfram and Hart, Wesley had kept tabs on the new Watcher’s Council. He’d thought that knowing what an army of Slayers was up to at any given point could only be a good thing.
However, he had never given much thought about what he would actually do with this information. He knew it could be useful, especially when they actually tried to bring down Wolfram and Hart, but beyond that he was just collecting it.
That changed, however, once Wesley had shot the cyborg that he had been utterly convinced was his father.
He didn’t want to contact the Slayers in order to find out who the cyborgs had been working for, though. His desire was more personal than that.
It had recently come to his attention that Xander had finished building a convalescence home for Slayers and Watchers in Connecticut. It seemed like the perfect place to go for someone who was getting over the fact that he had thought he’d committed patricide. He was, after all, an ex-Watcher. He was certain that he fit the criteria for admittance.
However, his information hadn't extended to contact information. In fact, the building, going by the codename ‘Coffee Lion House’, had been incredibly well hidden. He could understand why. A place filled with recovering Slayers would be the perfect target for anyone with a grudge against the Council. If it hadn't been for his vast resources, he doubted he’d have been able to find anything about it at all.
As a result, he didn’t contact Xander before he packed his bags for a stay in Connecticut.
When Wesley arrived at Coffee Lion House, he was surprised to see the place strewn with Halloween decorations. Halloween had happened more than two weeks earlier – which Wesley doubted he’d ever forget, after the incident with Lorne. It wasn’t just laziness, either – he could see a few people around in costumes, putting up even more decorations.
His thoughts on this were promptly interrupted when he felt someone put a hand on his shoulder. Only the fact that he was surrounded by people, some of whom were obviously Slayers, prevented him from spinning around and breaking that person’s wrist. Wesley didn’t like being surprised.
Instead, he simply turned and saw Xander standing behind him, frowning. Not that Wesley was particularly bothered about the frown. His attention was more immediately preoccupied with the fact that Xander was wearing a white robe, sandals and what looked remarkably like a circlet of thorns.
“Hello Wesley, nice to see you, Wolfram and Hart aren’t welcome here, stop trying to ruin my Halloween party, go away now, have a nice day.” Xander said, all in one breath.
“Why are you dressed as Jesus?” Wesley asked. He hadn't listened to a word Xander had said.
Xander frown deepened, and Wesley got the strong impression that that wasn’t the first time that Xander had been asked that question. “I’m not Jesus! I’m Valley
Jesus. Totally different. This is a designer robe, you know.”
Wesley decided not to question that. He was vaguely entertaining the thought that he might have lost his mind after he had shot his father, because that sentence had been lacking all kinds of sense. Probably best to ignore it. “So, can I have a room or should I have booked?”
“A room? You do know that you work for an evil law firm that wants to start the apocalypse, don’t you? Jeez, Wesley, I know you were inept, but your planning skills need a lot of work if you thought you’d get in with that.”
with the sentence that made no sense! It seemed almost as though Xander’s statements were missing half of what they needed to make sense. “What are you talking about?”
“You. Work. For. Bad. Guys. We. Don’t. Capisce?” Xander said, as though talking to an idiot. “You guys have been on our no flight list since you joined Wolfram & Hart.”
Suddenly, understanding dawned. Xander thought that Wesley was evil, because of who he worked for. They didn’t know that they planned to bring down the organisation from within. “You do know that you’re working for the organisation that ran the Cruciamentum for centuries, don’t you?” seeing Xander’s blank look, Wesley rolled his eyes. “You’d probably call it ‘that time when Buffy, like, totally almost died when she was, like, 18.’”
Xander grinned despite himself. “Your accent needs a little work. You’ve been living in California for, what, five, six years now? I’d have thought you’d have figured out how we speak by now.”
“I’ll bear that in mind.” Wesley said drily.
“I don’t get your point, though.”
“Well, you work for an organisation that was perfectly content to mistreat Slayers and expose them to unnecessary dangers. The Council wasn’t outright evil, but it wasn’t exactly a paragon of virtue either.” Xander nodded. That much was true. “Wolfram and Hart is worse. We’ve been trying to bring them down for years, and although we’ve foiled some of their plans they’re still much, much stronger than we are. So, given that we couldn’t take it down from the outside, we thought we’d try from within.” Wesley finished. Then he frowned. “I’m kind of surprised that you thought we’d turned evil.”
“Your boss is a 250 year old vampire with a tendency to go psychotic and kill people. Really wasn’t that much of a stretch.” Xander pointed out. Wesley thought about protesting, but then thought about the incident with Willow and decided that Xander had a point there. “Besides, taking an organisation from the inside doesn’t ever work. Don’t you even watch TV? You’ll end up getting compromised.”
Wesley looked at him steadily. “You know that we’re not in a TV programme, right?”
Xander made a mental note to introduce Wesley to Andrew at some point. “Still, how do I know that this isn’t some evil cunning ploy you guys have come up with to, uh, gain our trust and then bring us down?”
Wesley sighed. “Yesterday, I killed a cyborg who I was absolutely certain was my father. I don’t have even the slightest inclination to indulge in espionage. If you say I can’t stay here, then I’ll leave. I came because this place seems perfect for someone like me, but just say the word and I’m off.”
Xander’s frown didn’t smooth out, and his gaze didn’t soften. He also didn’t immediately summon some Slayers to throw Wesley out. “Cyborg, huh? What was it like?”
Wesley shrugged. “They wore masks, mostly. Beneath that they looked human but kind of burnt. The one who looked like my father must’ve had some sort of sophisticated glamour, because none of our spell warding at the office caught it.”
“That’s them.” A voice said from behind Wesley. He turned to see a girl, a Slayer, with a fierce expression on her face.
“Are you sure, Shannon?” Xander asked gently.
“Yes. I killed one of them, and they looked like that. They’re the ones who killed my Watcher.” Shannon said.
Xander turned back to Wesley. “Well, then. I guess you might not be up to something after all.”
A little while later, once Xander had conclusively decided to allow Wesley to stay, at least for the time being, Wesley said “So, you’ve been attacked by the cyborgs too.”
It hadn't been a question, but Xander decided to take it as one. “Shannon has. A couple of them broke into the place where she and her Watcher were staying. She killed one, and the other got away, but not before her Watcher was killed. Never did figure out what they were after. We meant to look into it, but we’re more concerned with-“ Xander cut off suddenly. “Never mind.”
Wesley understood. He wasn’t completely trusted. He understood that. He wasn’t he most trusting of people, either.
“Anyway.” Xander said brightly, obviously wanting to change the subject. “Let me show you around.”
They went up a flight of stairs. “Here’s the-“ Xander began, only to be interrupted when something went flying past his ear.
“What have I told you about throwing javelins in the hall, Lizzie?” Xander yelled without turning around.
A guilty looking girl poked her head around the corner. “Sorry, Xander. Once I throw it, it’s out of my hands.”
Xander sighed. “Yes, Lizzie, that’s what throwing means
. Don’t do it again, okay? I’m sure there’s some Watcher around who wouldn’t mind spelling your hands so that you can’t throw anything. We have a javelin range for a reason, you know.”
Lizzie apologized again and then scampered away. “Sorry about that. Girl loves her javelins. You might want to reconsider staying here – the Slayers are a rowdy bunch and the Watchers aren’t much better. There’s usually at least one full-scale battle in the hallway every day.”
Wesley smiled faintly. “I’m sure I’ll be fine.” He didn’t want a relaxing time. He just wanted to be away from LA.
They went fully into the corridor, and Xander pointed at an ornate object protruding from the wall. It looked almost like a sundial, except it had three indentations instead of a dial and considerably more than 12 markings around the edge. “This is Willow’s work. We call it the TARDIS, because it means you can make the corridor bigger on the inside. Watch.” Xander put three of his fingers into his indentations and then turned them to the right. There was a click, and then the end of the corridor shimmered like a heat mirage. When it stopped, it was longer than it had been before. “Took her a long time to figure that out. Magic doesn’t work quite right around here, for some reason. And before you go all librarian on it, Giles has been trying to figure out why for months now and hasn’t gotten anywhere. I doubt you will either.”
Wesley decided not the mention all the resources he had at his disposal thanks to Wolfram and Hart.
“Anyway, that’s your room, back there.” Xander gestured. “Oh, and before I forget, we’re having a Halloween party here later. I suggest that you get your own costume. If you don’t, I'm pretty sure that the girls will make you one and force you into it. You could go as Clint Eastwood. You’ve got the unshaven squinty gunslinger feel to you.”
Wesley decided that he should avoid the party at all costs.
“Everyone!” Xander called. “We’ve got a new guest! Come meet Wesley!”
Faster than Wesley would’ve thought possible, the corridor was filled with people saying variations of the theme of “Hi, Wesley!” Wesley began to think that, while he didn’t want a relaxing time, he also didn’t really want to be surrounded by raucous teenagers. He hadn't done well at Sunnydale, he doubted he’d be any better here.
Fortunately, he was saved from having to say something when a boy at the back of the crowd spread his hands and summoned a firework which exploded against the ceiling. Besides the deafening bang, it was harmless, but it still set off the sprinklers.
“Sam! No more magic for you!” Xander admonished the now-drenched young man.
Wesley smiled slightly. He supposed that this would be a good environment to get over something. He’d already been narrowly missed by a javelin and soaked by sprinklers. He doubted he would have much time to think about his father.