Title: New Beginnings: Discoveries
Content: Weird stuff, m/m and f/m relations
Distribution: If you want it, please let me know where its going.
Disclaimer: I don’t own a butt cheek of these guys, Marvel does and Joss owns BTVS.
Spoilers: Wouldn’t know since I don't read the comics and the movies are not really going to be mentioned though X2 or at least Strikers attack with a couple of changes will be referred to. X-men evolution and X-men the cartoon will be used as reference but nothing concrete. Basically making my own x-men universe out of all the bits and pieces I know. BTVS is up to and including the Series Finale.
Summary: A disturbing phone call from an old friend brings out something in Xander many had not seen. The rest of the X-men are shocked at Xander’s hidden depths.
Set three weeks after the end of “Confessions”
“Pretty, pretty, please, with a cherry on top?”
“For the last time Xander, I’m not going to use my optic blast to cut wood.” Scott Summers was wondering how a seemingly grown-up individual could act so much like one of his students at any given time, when he deemed it appropriate.
“Come on Cyke,” Xander could feel Scott’s glare at the use of that nickname even if he couldn't see it. “It’ll take you about two minutes instead of the five hours it’ll take me. I could be fixing the plumbing instead which is more important.” Xander knew he was whining but he had no shame if it got him out of cutting the wood.
Scot sighed. “Xander, for the last time mutant powers are not to be used for something that you are perfectly able to do by yourself.”
Xander rolled his eyes, Scott could be such a moron at times, like cutting wood was going to lead him to start roasting small furry animals for fun. “Fine, be an ass.” Xander muttered turning around and heading back towards the mansion from the tool shed. He made sure he was within hearing before speaking again. “Hope you don’t mind not showering for the rest of your life, Spike’s taken a shine to you and is coming to visit.”
Xander walked away whistling happily as he heard the fearless leader swearing a blue streak behind him. He wasn’t proud of the fact that he had to resort to blackmail but like he said before he had no shame. That and the fact that it freed up his time to fix the plumbing and hang out with Logan was worth it.
“Heard you got my hubby to do your work for you…” Jean stated as she leaned into the door jam as Xander worked under sink in the upstairs bathroom. It had been acting weird all week and they’d finally found the problem.
“Yeah, it was hell on the ego but it was worth it. Got all my wood cut which means I get a lot more free time for a few other projects I’ve been wanting to start.” Xander spoke not bothering to stick his head out from under the sink as he was changing the pipes and making sure he put them on correctly.
“Scott isn’t too happy about it though…any particular reason why?” Jean inquired mildly not that she was upset just wondering what Xander had said to change Scott’s mind since it didn’t happen often.
Xander wasn’t really paying attention to the conversation but he did absentmindedly wonder if Jean would hand him the brass flare, which he’d not stuck under the sink before hand. He wasn’t as surprised as he should have been when it was floating right above his head seconds later. “Thanks Jeannie, you rock.”
“I know, now tell me what you said to Scott.”
“I had to lower myself to blackmailing him because he was being an ass about using his laser vision for something as mundane as wood cutting.”
“Really?” Jean asked impressed Xander had blackmailed Scott and that Scott had actually given in.
“Yeah, I guess he thinks if he uses his powers for everyday things it’ll lead him to the dark side of the force, like he’ll be roasting fuzzy animals for entertainment next or something.” Xander scoffed at the thought, the person most likely to always be a white hat was one Scott Summers, not that it was a bad thing just annoying at times.
“Hmm. You were saying?” Jean didn’t agree or disagree since Xander was way off on that but he knows it, so why bother.
“What? Oh. Yeah, told him in a round about way that I’d have Spike popping over to visit and that Spike really enjoyed peeping on Scott in the shower. So like I told him he’d better get use to not showering in this lifetime since a vampire ghost would outlast all of us, no doubt.” Xander laughed at the image and what he thought Scott would look like being chased out of the shower by Spike.
“Xander! That’s really…ingenious actually.” Jean smirked at their handyman’s astonished expression.
“Here I was thinking you’d be telling me that blackmailing your hubby wasn’t a nice thing to do.”
“It isn't, but you knew that already so why bother.”
Jean laughed at his lack of thoughts.
Xander shrugged and smiled a bit ruefully. “Good point.” He stood up checked to make sure the sink was no longer on the fritz before packing up his tools. He could feel Jean’s eyes on him the whole time making him wonder if there was more to this conversation that he knew.
“Why don't you like Betsy?” Jean knew that came out of left field by the way Xander did a double take before picking up some extra pipe.
“That was random.” He said quietly trying to think of a.) How to get out of the conversation or b.) Give her an answer that was logical.
“Maybe, but I’ve been wondering about that since you met her. It’s not obvious and I doubt anyone but Logan, Scott and the Professor have caught on as well. I don’t think she even knows and she's a telepath.” Jean explained hoping it would get Xander to answer the question.
“I…Christ, way to go for the hard questions. It’s…well, she just feels…wrong.” Xander snorted at his articulate wording.
“She feels wrong?” Jean asked not incredulous or doubting but as someone who wanted more details.
“Yeah, like she’s not complete, she's missing something. I have no idea what it is she’s lacking because the Professor isn’t a flake to just trust anybody but whatever it is it makes her feel wrong to me.” Xander didn’t think that was the best explanation he’d ever come up with.
“That’s something I never thought regarding her. I wonder if anyone else had seen what you’ve seen?” Jean asked trying to correlate what she knew of Betsy and what Xander had just divulged.
Xander shrugged, uncomfortable with the whole thing. “Logan, he says she smells hungry sometimes.”
“I’ll have to ask him about that sometime. I didn’t mean to make you uncomfortable either; I just trust your judgment. Betsy has always been a little distant from the Professor and us but I never could figure out why. Its gotten worse since she’s developed her new mutant abilities…. I worry.”
“Look at who stands behind her in the shadows when the time comes, she doesn’t hunger alone.” Xander told her; his eyes once again glowing eerily making the hair on the back of her neck stand up.
“Xander?” Jean asked confused at the abrupt sense she felt in him and what he’d said.
“What did you—“
“I don't know. I have to go start on the basement now, no time to chat.” Xander interrupted her and quickly left the bathroom, walking with enough purpose and speed to discourage her following. He didn’t like when weird shit like that happened, it freaked him out. He’d have to call Angel and ask him to do a little research on his behalf. He quickly made his way to the basement already ignoring the weirdness in favor of his remodeling plans for the basement and getting one Jonathan Starsmore to move out for the next little while.
“Maybe.” Jean hedged.
“You don’t want to alienate him….”
“I don't.” Jean agreed.
“He is like a wild animal, corner him and he will strike out against you.”
“Very much like me Jeannie, remember that when you feel like head shrinking again.” Logan growled as he followed Xander’s agitated scent toward the basement.
“I will.” Jean murmured remembering the only time she tried to help Logan remember by probing his mind. She had been in a coma for a week as his mind had seen her probing as something to fight off. It had somehow viciously attacked her own, with a feral intensity that still haunted her if she thought about it too much. She would let Xander come to her; she didn’t want a repeat performance after all.
Xander knew he was jittery never a good thing with him, since it made him high strung and more than a bit erratic. He wasn’t up to dealing with Jono in a capacity that wouldn’t make the other mutant think he was off his rocker. He didn’t care but he figured the guy would be freaked out enough about someone coming down here. Then again it might make things a whole lot easier, something that wouldn’t be amiss in this instance either. He debated all of five seconds whether he should do this at all before he was knocking on the door.
“Oley oley oxen free.” Xander yodeled for entertainment purposes since he felt like he was baiting the beast in his lair.
“Go away!” Came the rather unoriginal response from inside though it was more than muffled by the angry rock music from some underground band no doubt, that the kid thought rocked, for their understanding of his anger issues, he bet.
“I’m afraid I’m here to evict you Mr. Starsmore, as your room won’t be livable while I remodel the basement.” He sounded professional even to his ears though if the kid opened the door, the shit-eating grin would give him away.
The door was opened with enough force for him to feel the air being sucked into the room beyond. “You're having me on.” The figure in front of him demanded in a slight accent though quite a lot less cockney than Spike’s. He couldn’t see them since the lighting was minimal and the figure was cloaked in shadow.
Xander rocked back on his heels. “Nope.”
“Does the Professor know?” This would be considered panic for one Jonathan Starsmore, he guessed since any other kid wouldn’t have been so self-contained.
“Sure does, gave me the go ahead himself…would you like to see the work order?” Xander asked cheerily well aware that he didn’t have a work order. He wasn’t above going upstairs and forging one but he hoped the threat of one was enough to discourage actually seeing it.
“Who are you anyway?” The kid asked that with enough suspicion to have him grinning goofily and holding out his hand.
“Xander Harris, handyman.” He stated politely.
“Why are you here?”
“Evicting you from the basement since I’m going to remodel….remember?” Xander asked more than a bit confused at the question.
“You’re not a mutant. Why are you at Xavier’s School for the Gifted?” the tone of voice left no doubt in Xander’s mind that the kid was bitter about being here.
“Because mutants need handymen just like normal people.”
“Why not me? I’m in good health, relatively good looking, young enough not to run screaming from the mansion when really freaky shit goes down, and I know how to deal with kids. What more could anyone want in their handyman I ask you?”
“Being knowledgeable and experienced.” Came the droll reply.
“Yeah, I have that too. Anything else you want to know before we pack your stuff up and head to your new room?” Xander asked in his most neutral tone though he really wanted to gloat.
“I’m not moving.”
“All right.” No doubt that kid thought that was easy. Mr. Starsmore however would be in for a rude awakening.
“I’m not.” Came the insistent reply.
Xander shrugged nonchalantly and gave him a vague smile. “Its your choice, of course. I would advice against it as any professional would but like I said it’s your prerogative.”
“All right then.”
“Well, now that we got that out of the way, do you mind if I take a look around?”
“Not at all.” The kid said graciously as he opened the door wider and allowed him to enter.
“Thanks.” It was just as dim in here as it had been outside. “Do you mind turning on a light because I need to get a feel for what work I need to do.”
There was silence before the overhead fluorescent lights turned on. He turned back towards Jonathan and didn’t even blink at what he saw just nodded his head in appreciation. The kid had this invisible man thing going on except his only extended to half his face, neck, and chest. His eyes were a deep dark blue that contrasted with his dark coloring. His clothes were standard angry teenager fare and frankly not as gothic as he’d thought. Though he did notice that everyone failed to mention a very important fact.
“You're a spook.” So he had been mistaken in thinking the kid could talk.
“Yeah, to some extent…does it bother you? I can stop.” He could tell the kid was taken aback by his reaction. More than a little confused about the fact that he took more notice of his telepathy than his disfigurement.
“Its all right, just caught me off guard. I’m not fond of telepathy but Jeannie and the Professor are okay for head shrinkers. I guess I could add you to the list.” Xander told him grinning.
“Gee thanks mate.”
“No prob Bob.”
What followed was the weirdest thirty minutes anyone had ever spent with Xander Harris. He only talked when the kid spoke to him and he behaved himself quite admirably. He didn’t speak non-stop as was his want but restricted himself to simple answers that were friendly but not overtly enthusiastic. The conversation was kept flowing about very boring normal stuff which was boring him half to death but he dealt. He channeled his inner Wesley and Giles for all he was worth without being stuffy and British in the process. He had no doubt when he finally left that the kid thought he was boring and nice, which made Jonathan even more likely to underestimate him. He made it all the way towards the stairs the lead out of the basement before he started rubbing his hands eagerly and cackling like a loon. He wasn’t the least bit surprised to find Logan waiting for him.
Logan answered with a growl, he’d given up telling the kid to quit calling him that.
“You spoke to Jean.” Xander stated more than asked the man who had become like the father he’d never had.
Xander knew that meant, he’d raked her over the coals in his own fashion. “Did you know Starsmore a spook?”
“Would have been nice if you’d shared. You know I hate spooks.”
“The Cajun said he was alright for one.”
“High praise that, since he hates spooks more than I do. So anything going on?”
“Really? You answered?”
“Jubes did, passed on the message.”
Xander rolled his eyes, it figured, as if Logan would ever answer the phone on his own. “Who was it?”
Xander stared at Logan blankly for a moment before he started giggling uncontrollably at how badly Jubes had managed to mangle Wesley’s last name. Logan figured something like that had happened when he heard the last name but didn’t bother trying to get Jubes to remember what it had actually been. It seemed easier just to let Xander figure it out and if not then the guy would call again if it was important enough.
Xander managed to get himself under control enough to ask, “What’s the message?”
Logan grunted; even Jubes had found it a little odd. “Call before nine this evening or think about sunny California.” Wolverine wasn’t surprised when Xander went still and his eyes flashed. His cub had gone from happy kid to cold in an instant, which meant the message was more dire than it seemed.
“Damn.” Xander stated quietly as he headed for the nearest phone, knowing Wolverine was following. This was bad, someone was trying to either a.) Re-open the hellmouth or b.) Open some other portal to some hell dimension or c.) One of them had gone bad again and wasn't that a cheerful thought.
“Bad?” Logan asked wondering what it could be since it hadn't sounded like anything remotely needing such a response from his cub.
“Could be, won’t know till I give them a call.”
Logan growled his response as Xander dialed what had to be a familiar number. It must have been a direct line since the Brit immediately answered the phone. Logan was well aware that he was eavesdropping and didn’t really care since whatever upset his cub had to be dealt with.
L. A., California
Wesley was relieved when his phone rang, since he had a feeling it was Xander. He knew that he had no right to dump this is the young man’s lap but his choices had been limited. Taking over Wolfram and Hart had alienated them from the Watchers Council, after the whole Lindsey debacle he’d rather have a back-up plan that involved a third neutral party of sorts.
“Xander.” He rather hoped he didn’t sound as relieved as he was.
“What’s the what?”
“The reason I needed to speak to you is not apocalyptic in nature. I’m sorry about the misdirection but it was imperative I talk to you.”
There was silence on the line before he heard Xander sigh, he hoped the young man would listen but he wouldn’t be surprised if he hung up. “All right.” Xander finally acquiesced but it was cautious.
“I’m sure you’ve been made aware that Angel is now CEO of Wolfram and Hart, though it is debatable on whether we hold the reins or the senior partners do.”
“Yeah, G-Man gave me the 411 before I went on vacation. Evil incorporated was offered to Angel and by association his team, he took the deal and thanks to the amulet, Spike and Willow, we defeated the First.”
“Yes, quite, though not everyone sees it that way.” Wesley was relieved that Xander didn’t seem to care one way or the other about making deals with the devil.
“I can see why some would have a problem with the Champions of the PTB taking perks from the bad guys.” Xander answered, Wesley though he heard someone grunting but it could have been the service on his cell phone it wasn’t the best in a building so heavily warded by magic.
“As you can imagine being in charge of evil incorporated as you put it hasn’t ingrained us to the new Watchers Council. In fact it seems were not welcome to even associate with them as it became apparent when they threatened Angel.”
“What happened?” The question was softly spoken with a wealth of meaning Wesley couldn't decipher over the phone.
“Willow activated all the Slayers regardless of circumstance, such a potential was here in LA. She witnessed her family killed by a man and the same man kidnapped her, tortured her for a long time before she escaped somehow. She wasn’t deemed legally insane after that but nonetheless she lived in a mental institution for the next nine years of her life. When she was activated the violent Slayer dreams sent her right over the edge, we contacted the council to help…they sent Andrew.”
“They sent Andrew?” Came the incredulous question.
“Yes, unfortunately, Spike and Angel set out to help catch the Slayer before she could cause any more human deaths, like she did when she broke out of the Institute. She got the best of Spike since he didn’t want to hurt her. She tied him up, drugged him and cut his hands off.”
“Fuck! Is he all right?”
“Spike’s fine, it wasn’t the first time it had happened to us and we knew what to do in order to give him working hands back.”
“You know it’s disturbing to know that you got experience with fixing hands like that.”
“Quite and naturally our first experience with that was an evil hand as a replacement when one of the lawyers lost their hand. Regardless, Angel found them and was able to restrain her without too much fuss as he had back up from a team of trained operatives. When we went to move her to a secure location and try to see if maybe her insanity could be cured fifteen new slayers and Andrew threatened Angel before taking off with her. He of course didn’t leave without making sure we knew we weren't trusted.”
“Ouch, that has to suck. So not to be an ass but what has any of that got to do with me? I mean the new Watcher’s Council doesn’t exactly feel all fuzzy about me either. I mean I got Faith, Dawn, and Willow as my allies when I decided to take an extended leave of absence. I’m not exactly rolling in their approval if I got a former rogue slayer, almost ended the world Wicca, and someone’s little sister for backup.” Wesley rather figured he had a point but since this wasn’t really about the Watcher’s Council per say so it was all right.
“I was aware of your precarious position with them when Andrew felt it necessary to inform us of your whereabouts. I also know that you’re currently employed by a third party that could potentially rival the Watchers, which brings me to the reason I’m calling.” Wesley definitely heard an angry growl that time, it wasn’t his connection, he was positive of that.
“Wesley, I’m not about to embroil these people in the supernatural side of things. They have their own shit to deal with and truthfully I’m just their handyman.” Wesley could hear the steel behind those words, if he wanted Xander to consider this he would need to talk fast.
“Xander you’ve never been a just anything in your life. Now, I’m not asking them to become part of our group because they aren’t equipped to handle the everyday much less the yearly apocalypse. In fact I don’t want them involved at all but circumstance have conspired against that.”
“Ok, I’ll bite. What do you want from them?”
“You know what kind of dangerous game we are playing with Wolfram and Hart. We can’t afford not to have someone to turn to if things go really bad. All I want is for them to give us safe haven to stay should things go bad here. That this will eventually turn into situation that will have us fleeing is a given its more of a when situation. I want to be prepared but since our sister operation in the Watcher’s would no doubt kill us on sight I rather thought we’d need somewhere neutral to regroup.”
“I can see how that would be of the good. I’m not agreeing to anything since it’s not my place but I’ll look into it and call you back with the details. I’m not too happy about involving them in being anywhere near the supernatural but I see your point.”
“Thank you.” Wesley hadn't been aware he’d been holding his breath till that moment.
“Hmm, anyway Spike’s corporeal then?”
“What? Oh yes, something was able to re-corporealize him. He’s quite happy about that I believe.”
“He would be. Anything else I need to know?”
“Nothing comes to mind, but I’ll give you a call should anything come up.”
“Right. Goodbye, Xander.”
Wesley knew Xander would come through he always did. He also knew that some of the things they would have to promise the youth in order to get his help would no doubt be annoying and somewhat restricting but he was ok with that. They needed a neutral ally more than they needed room to maneuver them after all.
“That was different. Usually, its all need help for the yearly apocalypse come quickly, after thought: bring your axe.”
“You telling the Professor?”
“Nope. Asking Warren and Remy though…” Logan growled, and Xander continued rolling his eyes. “and of course you’re invited, not like you would let me do this on my own.”
“Damn straight, you three planning anything is frightening.”
“Funny, really funny, Pops. Remind me to let you take your act on the road.”
Logan grunted, smelling some of the anxiousness he had picked up from his pup dissipating as they headed for Xander’s room. He knew the reason Xander wouldn’t include the X-men was because he didn’t want to endanger the students or his new friends. He was sure that if he hadn't been eavesdropping the kid would have done alone before asking for help. “Why Wings and the Cajun?”
“Because if, well when Angel and his crew need a safe house it’ll mean that they’ve pissed off the senior partners but good and they’ll be gunning for them. I’m not bringing that here, no way no how. Remy or Warren should have some not used house somewhere on the east coast that ought to work though. If not I’ll just ask them for their help in getting one, I can get Willow to ward it and Remy to do the security on it. That should give them some breathing room without endangering anyone here.” Xander explained as he booted up his laptop and e-mailed both Remy and Warren since they were currently both away on business. Warren he knew was actually doing business related CEO things, Remy was pulling job but liked to keep the X-men in the dark about still being a thief.
Wolverine grunted knowing exactly what the Cajun was doing and where. He was the only X-men the other man trusted enough to leave his whereabouts in case of emergency to.
Logan shoving him behind him and popping his claws surprised Xander. He knew the other man had sensed something since he was sniffing the air. Xander didn’t smell anything but then again he wasn’t as good as Wolverine at picking up scents, well strange non-belonging scents.
“What is it?” Xander asked quietly well aware that normal human hearing wouldn’t have picked it up but Logan would.
“Someone’s here.” came the equally soft response.
“What’s it smell like?” Xander asked looking around the room, trying to see something out of place.
“Old blood and fear.”
“I bet. Good smell then, means it’s not thinking it’s stronger than us and more than likely hurt.”
Logan didn’t bother answering but deliberately moved to a corner of the room. He made as if to turn but instead moved to pin something or someone against the wall. His forearm was across the assailant’s neck and claws held threateningly in front of their face. He watched as Xander approached the invisible attacker.
“Good job never would have been able to do that myself. I think you’re going to have to teach me how to do that shit. So who is it?”
“Invisible, female, scared, bleeding and in pain….” From that close up Logan could smell a lot more. He could have said a lot more but that was the most pertinent information.
“Huh. Well, invisible girl you might want to uncloak yourself or whatever before Wolverine cuts you a new breathing cavity.”
Logan grunted in response as he felt one of the female’s hand move from their hold on his arm to just below and rip away a necklace. She was immediately visible and Wolverine new she had to be in pain. She was pretty banged up and probably not even old enough to drink. He backed off since now that she was visible she was no threat.
“Dawn?” Xander asked incredulously. He couldn't believe what he was seeing; he had to be hallucinating. He closed his eyes and opened them again but she was still plastered against the wall.
Logan wondered how the kid knew the girl but decided to ask later. He moved back letting Xander closer but he kept his claws out in case she wasn’t as friendly as Xander wanted to think. He would see how thing played out before doing anything more.
“Xander.” Came the raspy reply, the tone was too neutral as if she was waiting for him to react first before she reacted.
“What the hell happened? Buffy and Giles are suppose to be looking after you.” Xander trailed off not missing the way Dawn’s body tensed at the mention of her sister and winced at Giles name. “Shit.” He knew whatever was going on had to be fucked up.
“You don’t….are you going to call them?” Was what Dawn finally asked him and Xander shook his head negatively. He wouldn’t call them not after her reaction and the condition she was in.
“Dawn, you need to see a doctor.”
“No, No, I don’t want to go to the hospital, they’ll call her.”
“Sweetie, calm down, I’m not taking you to the hospital. We have a doctor here and while he’s very interesting to look at, he’s cool. Kind of like Willow only blue and well male and like way smarter, so I guess not so much like Willow. Now I’m gonna pick you up and take you to him because you look like you’ve lost too much blood and are really banged up.” Xander moved slowly since Dawn was as skittish as he’d ever seen her, even after the Glory tower thing. He carefully tried to lift her into her arms without jostling her about too much but even carefully he still felt her tense, smelled the blood and pain pouring off of her since he was closer. He heard Logan sheath his claws before he turned around and was reminded that the older man was in the room.
“Xander, I’m not feeling too well.” He looked down at her after her understatement and found her as white as a sheet and biting her lip to keep herself from making noise.
“I know, Sweetie and that’s why Q and A will wait until Blue takes a good look at you and has you floating in a morphine cloud.”
“OK.” The easy acceptance was but a wispy sound that escaped her mouth as he looked at Logan, letting the other man see his anguish at seeing her like this and his confusion as well as helpless anger.
“Get her to Blue, I’ll tell Chuck and the others. Meet you down there.” Logan didn’t wait for the answer but made his way out of Xander’s room, knowing his pup wouldn’t waste time getting her to the infirmary ASAP.
Finally updated!!!! Its been a while and I hope no ones too ticked off since RL has been keeping me plenty busy. Enjoy!