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Vampire hunting can lead to adventures

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Summary: Once again Xander gets pushed out of slaying. But now he goes out on his own as he can't give it up and simply stand by. Then he findes that interesting stone...

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Games > FantasymalaskorFR15718,20901715,23610 Apr 0417 Jan 05No

Travelling

Title: Vampire hunting can lead to adventures

Author: Malaskor

Disclaimer: All characters of Buffy the Vampire Slayer belong to Joss
Whedon,
Greyhawk belongs to Wizards of the Coast, the characters Justicar,
Cinders, Escalla, Enid, Polk, Henry and Morag belong to Paul Kidd and
Wizards of the Coast

Summary: Xander starts to patrol alone. Then finds this interesting
stone...

Setting: Season 4 after the Initiative was discovered by the Scoobies /
AU Anya left during Graduation Day never to return. Xander has already
his job in construction, but doesn’t show any talent for carpentry so
far

Pairings: B/R in the beginning, you won’t be bothered with it too long.
B/X in the end (I hope J - this was the plan when I started the story
but currently I don't see how I'm going to do that, so I'll gurantee
frindship for now, maybe more later), W/T mentioned

Rating: 13, 16 max. Due to some violence and swearing

Feedback: Of course, after all I want to get better.

Author’s notes: '....' denotes thoughts; //...\\\\ denotes telepathic
communication;

AN 2: Yay, my muse finally deigned to share a new chapter for this story with me. Hopefully

she will continue to do so and won't take so long...

further notes will be added as necessary

Thanks to Tenhawk for bouncing ideas back and forth with me

Part 6

"…. Who are you to deny him his choice?"

At the end of their argument both girls were near tears as they slowly
started to see that they were wrong with their tactic and had in fact
reached the opposite of their goal of keeping Xander safe. They had
driven him right into his current situation.

"Ok, no more excluding Xander from patrols but I'll still have a serious
talk with him when we get him back. I mean what was he thinking to go
out there alone? Doesn't he know what it would do to me, to us, if he
would die?"

"Be that as it may, I have to go now to see an old friend in Los Angeles
about a book that might have some more clues about Xander's whereabouts.
Please shut the door behind you when you leave."

On the way to his car Giles wondered if the two girls would remember
their realization when Xander came back or would they slide back into
pattern and try to 'protect' Xander from the life he had chosen.

*****
(A/N: From now on we - read: I - are going to focus on Xander in
Greyhawk, for now assume that the season runs close to what you
remember, any changes will be explained in flashbacks when appropriate -
unless my muse kicks me with an idea that has to be used at once and not
in the future)
*****

Duchy of Ulek, Oerth

The next days were filled with the same routine every day, they would
march from shortly after sunrise for about eight hours, and then they
would search for a good place to set up camp. While the others would
then proceed to prepare the evening meal or something along these lines,
Xander would spend his time with Jus training how to handle a mace.
Then, shortly after dinner Xander would fall into a deep, exhausted
sleep only to be woken two hours before sunrise to take the last watch
of the night. Despite of his misgivings about the early rise he was glad
not to have the first watch, or even worse one of the watches in the
middle of the night where he would have to wake up after a few hours and
be alert only to get then back to sleep for a short while until it was
time to get up again. No, compared to that he had an excellent guard
duty.

When the sky began to lighten with the approaching dawn Xander started
to fan the ashes and charred wooden remains of the campfire up again and
placed new wood into the fire pit. Now that the fire's glare wouldn't
destroy his night vision anymore he could get warmed up and start the
first preparations for the breakfast. As the fire grew to full size the
birds began to sing their morning songs and slowly the stars winked out
as the sky grew brighter.

Soon the others woke up r were woken by those awake and they had a short
breakfast of trail bread, dried fruit and porridge with water and cider
to drink from. After packing all the gear together the group was ready
to leave and moved onwards towards their goal the village of Hommlet.
Their way continued to lead them over rolling hills with the occasional
island of trees and little creek.

By late afternoon rusty swords and armor parts began to jut from the
ground, growing more numerous as they progressed. Soon they could also
see bleached bones littering the ground, both humanoid and obviously
nonhuman bones could be found mixed haphazardly with each other. As the
traces of battle grew in number, the life of the plants diminished, with
the grass becoming shorter and sicklier, even to the untrained eye,
until only a few patches of brownish grey grass were all that covered
part of the ground leaving the rest open to the elements.

"We have to move on quickly. I don't want to be caught here in the dark.
This is one of the sites of the War where one of Iuz's troops was
destroyed. There is no telling if there aren't any lingering necromantic
magics still hanging around," the ranger ordered before quickening his
steps without waiting for a reply.

Xander directed a questioning look at Henry and the badger Polk that sat
on the cart Enid pulled, looking around for danger. When Henry noticed
Xander's ignorance about the potential dangers of the area the young
soldier hurried to explain while keeping an eye out for trouble.

"Iuz and his magi used a lot of necromancy to bolster their armies'
ranks with the raised dead. That is one of the reasons why the
resistance and regular units did cut off the left foot and right hand of
their fallen, sometimes even the tongues, so that they wouldn't be of
use to the necromancers. But even that wasn't always effective when they
used their mightiest spells. When Jus says we have to move quickly he
has either spotted traces of some of these spells or he saw complete
remains that could rise at any moment. We have to be careful."

"Thanks," Xander replied, "I'll take this side to watch," he continued
while walking purposefully alongside the wagon, his gaze sweeping the
field to the left of him while Henry took care of the right and Polk
looked out of the back of the cart, though in his case his nose was much
more important than his eyes.

It was close to dusk when they had passed the last, sporadic traces of
the battle. It must have been a steady retreating action by one of the
two sides, for the remains of the fight had littered the ground for
several miles after leaving the epicenter of the battleground. The
losses had been horrific, Xander guessed that he had seen parts of
several hundred dead and there was no telling how many were hidden from
sight under the earth. No matter who won there, they had paid a steep
price.

This time they broke their usual routine, Jus didn't want to make their
camp so close to the battlefield so they kept on moving until well after
nightfall in the light of a single hooded lantern and the flickering,
multicolored globes of light Escalla had conjured when it became too
dark to safely see where they were stepping while maintaining their
speed.

Finally they reached a place Jus deemed suitable and readied their camp
for the night. A fire was lit and the last of their flesh provisions was
grilled, well all except Enid's portion of course. Some wild fungi and
beans made up the rest of the meal in form of a warm paste that they
spread on some simple flat bread Jus made in the fire, abusing a metal
shield as the baking tray.

*****

Several miles behind them something reacted to the passage of life force
through the area. It woke up and in a barely visible bluish shockwave it
traveled through the scarred strip of land.

In its wake all was silent, not even a cricket made a sound. It was as
if the world held collectively its breath.

Then, minutes later, a bony hand broke through the ground. And then
another, and another. Over there it was the head of a horse that rose
out of the ground and there a rusted sword led the way to the air.

An army was waking to ride again.

End Part 6
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