Trick or Treat - Trick, Most Definitely!
Trick or Treat - Trick, Most Definitely! 1/?
Rating: maybe R for violence and some language, but definitely not much worse than the show.
Disclaimer: They're not mine. They belong to Crack-Head Joss. Deal with it. I have.
Category: Friendship only. No smut here, people. (Sorry about that.) Pretty much just friendship stuff. B/X, W/X, and some D/X and C/X, too.
Summery: Yet another fascinating alternate Halloween episode. How could have things been changed if everyone had chosen different costumes that night?
Time Frame: Canon for first season, then becomes AU at second season episode 6, "Halloween."
Spoilers: None really, if you've watched anything past the middle of second season.
Character Bashing: None. Really. :)
Feedback: Of course! Flames, however, will either be ignored or to used to toast marshmallows.
Author's Note 1: Significant changes in this particular universe are as follows: Dawn is present here, since the monks' spell in the Joss-verse retroactively altered the past when they cast it to create Dawn, give her a soul and make her Buffy's sibling. So she really was here all the time, and the false memories everyone has of her being here really aren't! Joyce knows about Buffy being the Slayer and that Xander, Willow and Giles support her, and everyone thinks that Dawn is unaware of everything concerning Buffy and Slaying, including the Scoobies' support of her sister. Angel is still a brooding asshole and Spike is most definitely the nasty, vicious, mean and underhanded prick he used to be, before Joss and Marti castrated him and turned him into the capering Nancy-boy poof he used to despise.
Author’s Note 2: The movie crosses I’m going to be using (yes, there’ll be more than one) will be revealed in the next chapter or two, so you’ll just have to wait to see what they are.
Trick or Treat - Trick, Most Definitely!
Sunnydale High School Library
Wednesday, October 29, 1997
"So what are you guys planning to do Friday night, huh? Hang around the house and enjoy the opportunity to hand out candy to bunches of hopped-up sugar-charged kids dressed up like their favorite superheroes?" Xander grinned as he looked over at his two best friends in the world from his perch atop one of the card catalogue file cabinets.
"Well, since Giles insists that tomorrow night will be dead, figuratively speaking, as far as the actually dead and undead being out and about goes, I plan to veg out and spend a fruitful evening crammed full of doing nothing but pigging out on popcorn, chocolate covered raisins and other nutritious junk foods while watching movies and NOT being out Slaying," Buffy announced happily, leaning back in her chair and taking advantage of the momentary peace they were enjoying while Giles attended a faculty meeting.
"Why, Xand? Did you have something else in mind?" Willow asked him, looking up from the monitor of the library's computer where she had been idling away her time trying to hack into the state's DMV files and assign herself administrator privileges.
"Do I ever!" he replied enthusiastically, kicking himself off and dropping to the floor with an awkward stumble as he landed.
"*I* have been invited to attend the Sigma Phi Epsilon Halloween party, *and* told that I can bring along a friend or twelve!" he proudly announced, puffing his chest out with pride. "That is why I'm inviting you to accompany me on this soon-to-be-memorable excursion."
"Uh-uh, Xand," the petite Slayer shook her head negatively as she lay her head back against the chair frame and closed her eyes. "I haven't had a night off from Slaying in months, and I'm not going to waste it watching random groups of college guys drinking beer and then throwing up a little later. This girl is going to spend a quiet night at home and enjoy the lack of screaming, terror and bloodsucking fiends trying to kill me."
"So, Will, I guess that leaves just me and you, then, huh?" the tall brunet smiled at his best friend since kindergarten. "I'll dazzle the ladies and you can charm the Neanderthals when they're not busy grunting, drinking and throwing up, right?"
"Uh, I don't know, Xander," Willow replied uncertainly, turning to face him. "I'm thinking that we wouldn't fit in very well, or anything, what with us being non-college people and all that stuff."
"Aw, come on, guys! It's a frat party! You know you want to do this!" Xander cajoled his friends, urging them to accept.
"I can't just show up by myself, you know. Not after bragging about knowing the two most beautiful women in the world and promising that they'd show up with me," he admitted with an even bigger grin.
"Xander! You didn't!" Willow gasped, blushing at both the compliment and the gut-tightening thought of showing up at a party where she wouldn't know anyone at all.
"Yeah, I did, Will," he nodded his head affirmatively. "So you guys are gonna have to get busy picking out costumes 'cause the party's in just two nights, you know."
"Xander, I'm not going," Buffy repeated herself tranquilly, not opening her eyes or looking over at him as she relaxed and enjoyed the momentary tranquility. "I'm staying home and enjoying the quiet."
"All right, Buff, if it's your choice. Guess you forgot all about your Mom letting Dawn have that Halloween party at your place then, huh?" Xander reminded the blonde, a triumphant smile on his face as he delivered his argument's coup-d'etat.
"WHAT??!!!" Buffy screamed, immediately snapping upright and glaring at him when she heard the brunet's final words.
"Dawn's having a Halloween party tomorrow night, Buff, remember? Shouldn't be more than, oh, say a couple dozen of her friends and classmates there. Your Mom asked me if I could help her set everything up for the party after school on Friday, that's how I know," he hastily explained as his self-preservation instincts instantly kicked in and made him take a step backwards from the apparently agitated Slayer.
"NOOO! She can't do that!" the blonde looked up at the heavens and wailed in protest. "I had the night all planned out already! Sleepless in Seattle! The Princess Bride! Somewhere in Time! While You Were Sleeping! I already rented them! And I got two half gallons of Double Chocolate Fudge and Velvet Strawberry ice cream, too!! That's so not fair!"
"Well, since it seems your plans have to be cancelled due to annoying kid sister, Buff, would you like to accompany Willow and myself on our excursion to the realm of the educationally upwardly mobile?" Xander asked smugly, already knowing the answer he would be getting.
"If I thought there was the slightest chance that you were responsible, Xander..." Buffy frowned at him, letting the rest of her threat hang unsaid.
"Do I look that dumb to you, Buffy?" Xander challenged her, while inwardly he prayed that Dawn would keep her mouth shut about where the initial idea for her party had originated.
"It just seems too coincidental for some reason," the Slayer commented a bit suspiciously as she looked at him. The air of innocence that radiated from the brunet would have done justice to a saint.
Willow, too, regarded him with a jaundiced eye as she considered the various circumstances of timing involved for a moment, before dismissing the matter as just an unfortunate coincidence.
"Well, ladies, would you like to go pick out our costumes, or would you rather wait until the last minute?" Xander asked them; then, seeing the glares the two girls gave him, wisely shut his mouth and followed them out of the library.
"Xander, exactly how is it that you got invited to a frat party?" Willow asked him, as the three of them strolled down the street housing the newly opened costume shop.
"Yeah, Xan, what's going on? No offense, but you aren't exactly the first person I'd think of when somebody mentions a fraternity," Buffy chimed in.
"Well, ladies, you may not believe it, but over the course of the past several weeks, I have become an indispensable part of the Sigma Phi Epsilon on-campus community," the brunet announced with a wide smile, ostentatiously puffing out his chest in a parody of pride as he hooked his thumbs in his belt.
Seeing the dubious looks the girls were giving him, he grinned and elaborated.
"Well, guys, seeing as how Sigma Phi Ep has been holding parties virtually every third night since even before the semester began, and adding in the fact that, even though they're all college guys, pretty much none of them even know which end of a hammer to hold, they have been forced to seek outside help in repairing the collateral damage that seem to accompany their ongoing efforts to consume as much beer as is humanly possible and try to seduce every woman foolish enough to enter their viewing range," Xander told them.
"Enter moi, the enterprising young entrepreneur and independent contractor, who can repair the holes in the walls, paint over said repaired walls so that their landlord doesn't notice the damage, replace the broken windows, fix the various electrical switches and fuse boxes that seem to invariably blow out when they try to plug too many stereos and pieces of band equipment into the outlets, and generally handle all ongoing repairs the residents of the house find themselves in need of," he explained. "All at prices so reasonable that they would have to be even more drunk than they usually are, in order to refuse and look for someone else to do the work," he elaborated.
"Plus, there's also the fact that I'm not connected to the school in any way, so the administration won't ever hear anything from me about what goes on in there," he added offhandedly.
"So you're what, a handyman?" Buffy asked after hearing the brunet's explanation.
"I prefer the term maintenance engineer or housing repair contractor myself," Xander replied.
"I'm sure you do," Willow grinned at him.
"In any event, I've got a fairly steady cash flow coming in, now," Xander shrugged, "and that's something novel, innovative and almost inconceivable for a member of the Harris household.
"Actually, I'm hoping that they'll disown me, once they find out about it," he added with what appeared to be only a partially-joking expression.
"So, anyway, these guys appreciate your fixing up their place so much they invited you, a high school student, to their Halloween party?" Buffy inquired skeptically, raising a questioning eyebrow.
"Yeah," Xander nodded.
"Well, that, and the fact that I begged, pleaded, whined, brown-nosed and sucked up to pretty much everyone living there until they agreed," he added after a moment, as both girls merely stared at him doubtfully.
"I also told them I would bring two of the hottest women existent along with me, which is what clinched the deal," he continued.
Seeing the pleased smiles light up the girls' faces at that remark, he couldn't help himself but add, "And since Cordy and Harmony can't make it, would you two want to go, instead?"
"OW!!! No fair! Slayer strength, Buff!" he yelped a second later, rubbing his arm as both girls swatted him from either side.
"And you're getting a bit too enthusiastic, too, Wills," he stated, as he turned to glare at the frowning redhead on his other side.
"You deserved that, and you know it!" Willow told him without a flicker of remorse on her face. "And I've got a lot more where that came from, too," she warned him. "So you just watch yourself, mister."
"Oh hey, guys, we're here!" the redhead abruptly shifted moods as the three paused in front of a shop whose windows were adorned with 'Grand Opening!' signs.
"Think this place is some kind of franchise thing?" Buffy asked, as Xander pulled open the doors and gestured for the girls to precede him.
"Must be some really new chain or something," Xander guessed as he followed the girls in. "I've never heard of anyone or anything called Ethan before. Guess he must be the owner."