Title: It’s Not Funny
Disclaimer: Xander belongs to Joss et al., and the pard belong to LKH.
Summary: Xander gets pointers on how to do it standing up… comedy, stand-up comedy, geesh people, get your minds out of the gutter ;). Fic-a-thon entry for Pixiestyxs.
Genre: Anita Blake
Max Rating: NC-17
Characters: Xander, Asher
Want To See: Xander telling of Anita
Not Want To See: Xander following Anita around like a puppy
A/N: I’m sorry, pixiestyxs. I don’t believe in love at first sight, therefore my attempt at Xander/Asher romance, was getting to be way too long for the Fic-A-Thon… but I do have one started and I’ll put it online as soon as I finish it.
“So the bartender says, why the long face.”
“No.” Nathaniel shook his head.
“Do you really want me to answer that Xander?”
“But, Nate…” Xander looked at his roommate pleadingly.
“Try something else.” Nathaniel said firmly.
“Fine.” Xander took a deep breath, collected his thoughts, and started with, “So there’s a priest, a rabbi, and a woman trapped on a desert island…”
“What? I promise it’s a good one!”
“Yeah, that’s why everyone’s heard it already, from their grandpa, when they were five.”
“So what do you think I should do?”
“Well, why do you want to do this anyway?” Nathaniel looked up at the young werehyena questioningly. Xander was one of the big mysteries in Nathaniel’s life. He was right up there with Anita and Richard when it came to people who made no sense. Xander had hyena in him, but didn’t shift all the way. He didn’t spend all his day in the gym like all the other werehyenas and didn’t think Narcissus was the best thing since sliced bread, which probably explained why he lived with the leopards instead. He stood up to Anita sometimes, but let his childhood friends, all girls, order him around. He wasn’t a top or a bottom. In short, Xander was an enigma.
“Well, I sort of want something that’s all mine, you know, my schtick.” Xander tried to explain, pacing across the living room carpet. “I mean, Buffy’s the strong one and Willow’s the smart one. I always thought I was the funny one, and so I sort of want to prove it.”
“But your friends understand that. You don’t have to prove anything to us.”
“You think it’s a bad idea too?”
“I didn’t say that.” Nathaniel frowned. He didn’t like that look on Xander’s face. He never met anyone before who actually took anything he said so seriously. “You just need to find your schtick- not some bartender joke or lame impression.”
“But I’m not sure anyone will get my schtick.” Xander frowned.
“You need to sit down before you wear out the carpet.” Nathaniel observed. He took a minute to collect his thoughts, and then began his friendly advice. “Okay, so, here’s the deal. This isn’t just Amateur Night, this is Amateur Night at the Laughing Corpse. People go to the Laughing Corpse because they want to laugh at demony things. Your jokes are pretty demony normally, so you’re right up their alley.”
“No they aren’t.” Xander looked confused as he leaned against the kitchen counter.
“Yes they are. What about that one you told at dinner last night, about the bunny?”
“That wasn’t a joke. That was my ex-girlfriend.”
“Oh.” Nathaniel sighed. “Oh, but that’s good! Think about it. What do real comedians do? They take their life and then only tell the funny parts. That’s what you need to do.”
“Really?” Xander thought about it. Going over reruns of Comedy Central in his mind, he had to admit Nate was right. “Okay. Let’s try this again.” Xander paced back and forth before stopping right in front of the tv. “Okay. You’re the audience, you sit there.” He pointed to the couch that Nathaniel was already sitting on. Nate nodded at him encouragingly. Xander smiled goofily then started. “Ladies and Gentlemen, I’m not a vampire or a zombie, so you may be wondering, what I’m doing here at the Laughing Corpse. Well, I’ve got a little secret.” He leaned forward then stage whispered. “I’m a demon magnet.” Backing up, he raised his hands in a typical surrender pose “Yes, I admit it. I’m a demon magnet. Every single girl I’ve dated or considered dating has turned out to be demonic.” By the time Xander had finished telling about the foreign exchange student, the mantid teacher, and Cordelia, Nate was rolling on the floor, tears in his eyes from laughing so hard.
An hour later they had edited the act and were working on the presentation. “… so then she’s stomping around in this bunny costume and the midget is all…”
“Oh hey, Xan, not like that.” Nate interrupted.
“Huh?” Xander froze midpose, trying to cower in an impersonation of the mini-fear demon.
“You’re blocking out.” Nate explained, but Xander just stared. “It’s a stage term.” Xander looked even more lost. “That’s what Jean Claude says when he’s directing us at Guilty Pleasures. It means the audience can’t see the goods.”
“But I’m not showing the goods.” Xander said, trying to keep a straight face. He always thought it was hilarious that he was living with a male stripper.
“Yeah, but all I can see is your back. Here try this.” Nate jumped up from the couch and began moving Xander’s limbs around like he was a giant doll. He was so intent on getting Xander’s pose just right that he didn’t notice the door open and the rest of the pard return home from the grocery store.
“Somebody grab a camera!” Anita shouted seeing Nathaniel leaning over the back of the new werehyena. “Nate’s finally found himself a bottom!”
The two budding comedians looked up at Anita like deer in the headlights. “Here you go!” Zane grabbed the digital camera from the kitchen counter and threw it at Anita, who got in a quick shot before Nate and Xander realized what was going on.
“I hate you.” Xander growled.
“And what are you going to do about?” Anita arched her brow, knowing she could take on Xander any day, probably with a hand tied behind her back.
Xander scowled. “One day, when you least expect it, when your guard is down, I’m going to… call Buffy and have her attack you.”
Nathaniel fell down laughing. “What?! I’m serious!” Xander frowned, standing back up.
“But… you…” Nathaniel was rolling around on the floor so much Xander couldn’t understand a word he said.
“No really, I wasn’t kidding.” Xander frowned.
“I know.” Nathaniel panted, getting his breath. “But we have to save some material for next month’s act.”