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There And Back Again The Horsemen's Tale

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This story is No. 1 in the series "The Horsemen". You may wish to read the series introduction first.

Summary: Cordelia makes a different wish in season three and lands Willow and Xander in a new world, with a few changes. last two chapters added

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Highlander > Willow-CenteredangrymonkeyFR18820,614337785,52121 Sep 0525 Oct 05Yes
CoA Winner

Wish Fulfilled

as usual thank you for editing Rognik

still don't own anything




Chapter three

Wish Fulfilled



At first, the Horsemen only robbed thieves and hunted other immortals; however, over a couple of centuries, their morals started slipping. Soon they were robbing the rich - they could afford it after all. If a caravan had a few slaves then so much the better. It was nice to have some help around the camp. Sometimes patrols were sent out after the four, but of course killing them was only self-defense. Now who could really judge them for wanting some revenge on the cities that sent the patrols out?

After three centuries they only lived by three rules:
NEVER raise a sword in anger to your brother
All spoils of raids are split evenly and
Want. Take. Have.

They were no longer Kronos, Casvienne, Silas, and Methos; they had become War, Pestilence, Famine, and Death. They all brought something to the group: Methos was a brilliant strategist, Xander was an extremely gifted swordsman and blacksmith, Willow had her magic as well as an extremely sharp mind, and Silas was so large people often ran when they saw him.

Perhaps the most surprising change in any of the four was in Xander. It seemed he was always destined to be the heart of the group. He had developed an almost fanatical attachment to his Brothers. He was ruthless in dealing with anything that came between them. At one point, Willow and Silas had been fighting over one of the new slaves. Before it could come to blows though, Xander had run the girl through with a sword and said to them in a cold voice, “Top or bottom half?” When neither replied, he continued, “We share everything.” Xander then turned and left two horsemen open mouthed.

If Willow could have remembered her mortal life better, she might have recognized this behavior as similar to Hyena Xander. It seemed that, on some level, Xander’s early experience as the Alpha of a pack was how he was basin his leadership of the four horsemen. If you weren’t part of the pack, you were prey; or a rival.

Willow’s changes were easier to explain. After millennia of killing to survive, she had hardened considerably. To make matters worse, delving into the quickenings she and Xander had accumulated were causing what was left of her personality to be slowly corroded. As a result, Willow was now slightly schizophrenic.

~~~~~


Sunnydale 1999

Giles was worried; in the book he had been browsing, dated 1025 (this is before the horsemen), Willow had seemed so disconnected and aimless. He also got the impression Xander was becoming increasingly reckless. It was his impression that the weight of so many foreign memories were starting to alter Willow’s and Xander’s basic personalities.

Hoping to see a positive future for the two, he decided to read a journal farther into the pile. The tome was massive and bound with leather, and must have taken weeks to make. It showed some signs of wear but was in otherwise good condition. On the cover, in cuneiform, was written 1975-2005. He opened it in a random place and began reading.

Xander’s Journal
Year 1996

I wish you had been here today Giles, Willow was amazing!!!

~~~~~~

~Well this is encouraging,~ though Giles. ~They seem to be doing better.~ This opinion quickly changed as he read on.
~~~~~~


The city of Babel will forever regret putting a price on the Four Horsemen.

Methos’ plan worked perfectly. We slipped a hallucinogen into the water supply. This made it easy for Willow to use her magic on their weakened minds and make the army of Babel think their own officers were the ones they were supposed to be fighting. Meanwhile, I used my gift with animals to drive their horses insane. Within 20 minutes, the army had torn itself apart. The confused survivors were quickly slaughtered by Silas and Methos. The shear strength and brutality of Silas is impressive, but the surgical efficiency Methos commands truly earns him the name Death.

Willow was upset that she couldn’t join the initial fighting. She had to stay hidden so she could focus enough to cast. Any spell like this takes her hours of mental preparation beforehand. However, she more than made up for missing the initial battle after we entered the city. Seeing Willow and her horse completely covered in the blood of our enemies was one of the most beautiful things I have seen in my entire existence. It was all I could do to keep from dismounting and taking her there on the street.

But we had a job to do. The city wasn’t going to burn itself to the ground.

~~~~~~


Giles couldn’t tear his eyes from the pages before him. They described atrocities no single group of demons in this world had ever been able to achieve. This was a mixture of the cunning of three extremely intelligent humans with a psychopathic passion that was terrifying. Hell, they made the Scourge of Europe look like a group of fledglings. (Which I guess from the Horsemen’s point of view they were)

After half an hour, he closed the book. He put it on a side table while in a state of shock. Sitting back down on his chair, he carefully he put his glasses in his shirt pocket, then began to weep.

It was like this that Buffy, Oz, and Angel found him when they came to report a half hour later.

~~~~~~~


Willow’s Journal
2417

I am worried Giles. That new slave Methos has is stirring things up. It wouldn’t be so bad if she were mortal. All we would have to do is wait fifty years or so for her to break. As it stands, she is here for a while.

I wouldn’t mind sharing her with Xander some night; she is gorgeous, and our Brother has trained her well, if the way he favors her is any indication. Here however is the problem: both Xander and I can feel Methos pulling away from us and into the little nest he has with her.

We are at an impasse as to what to do. Xander wants to force Methos to share. I think this is a bad idea; it will just push him away from us. Perhaps bring Cassandra into the Horsemen? She does have the potential for magic. Even if it is extremely weak, it is the best I have ever found in another immortal besides Xander and myself. Besides I might enjoy having a girlfriend to talk to. The slaves Xander likes to watch me with don’t really count.


Willow’s Journal
2420

I can’t believe that blundering oaf!!!! He waited until I was off sparring with Silas and tried to take Cassandra for a ride. She then stabbed him and ran away. Serves him right!

Methos is upset; he doesn’t think I can tell. He’s so proud of his ability to hide emotions. I am very worried about this. He has never hidden from us like this before. He now looks at us with the same eyes he uses to evaluate enemy forces or the terrain before a fight. When I look at him now, all I see is a sharp calculating precision that is trying to find a means of escape.

I know without a doubt that if it takes a thousand years, he will leave. The Horsemen are dead. Xander is just too blind to see it.



Xander’s Journal
2429

Methos left with Silas three weeks ago. I have been tearing apart the countryside looking for them. I sent out birds and rodents to spy for me. The sneaky old bastard, however, ran into the desert. No animal will go more than a few miles into that wasteland.

To make matters worse, Willow keeps smirking at me like I’m the butt of some joke. I swear, if she weren’t my mate, I would wipe it off her face.


Willow’s Journal
2429


I can’t write much, I’m only lucid for a few minutes at a time.

Xander left me today. I don’t no what to do, Giles. Part of me wants to tear him apart, but the other wants to curl up and waist away. We’ve been Willow and Xander since before I can remember. Almost 25 centuries is a lot to throw out.

It was all because Methos left, you see. While we were tearing apart the desert looking for him, he muttered, “I just don’t see how that bastard could leave.”

“You wouldn’t,” I snarked.

At this, he spun around and yelled, “What are you talking about, Witch.”

I had had enough of his attitude, so I screamed, “If you are too stupid to figure it out, then I am sure as hell not going to help you out.” Then he did something I never would have imagined him capable of: he hit me. Never in the entire time we have been married has he hit me in anger.

As the shock wore off, something inside me changed. I was filled with a blinding rage, and I felt the walls in my mind that kept the other memories at bay dissolve. Power like I have never felt filled me. The thousands of quickenings surged through me. I am pretty sure that if you had seen my hair and eyes, they would have been jet black.

Xander realized something was horribly wrong and as I threw a large ball of fire to incinerate him, he was able to stab me in the heart with his sword.

When I came to, my horse had been killed, and the power had receded. My mind, however, was broken. Even now, I am still jumping from personality to personality every few minutes. Some of them are mine, some are from immortals I have killed. Pinned to horse with my sword was a note from Xander. It said:

Dear Willow,
We nearly killed each other today. I know that this wouldn’t have happened if we were sane. We need to travel different paths for a few centuries. I think we will know when we are ready to see each other again. Don’t try and find me.

Love, Xander

~~~~~

Bronze Age

A lone man walked in the desert, his horse long dead from dehydration. He didn’t know where he was heading, but he felt drawn further into the African continent.
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