Disclaimer: I don’t own BTVS or the Watchmen
A/N: The obvious choice would be Xander… so Andrew! :-D
By: Cousin Mary
“Here, Andy.” Eddie thrusts a tumbler of amber liquid at him. “Ever drank whiskey before?”
Andrew shakes his head, staring into his glass to avoid eye contact. While the Watchers’ Council doesn’t have a permanent presence in New York, there are times when they need someone there. Their NYC to-do list had started to get pretty long, so Andrew had volunteered to spend the summer with his biological father. He hadn’t realized things with Eddie would be so awkward. He probably should have, he hadn’t seen the man since he was three. He looks up. “I had a wine cooler once. It was raspberry.”
Eddie doesn’t seem to know what to say to that. The man is trying, on some level Andrew knows that, nevertheless, it’s obvious that Andrew is not the kind of son Eddie Blake expected.
“Uh, this is a bit stronger.” Eddie tells him.
The fumes alone are making him kind of dizzy so Andrew sets his glass down on the coffee table. Casting around for something to talk about, his eyes land on the well stocked bar. “When I was seven I tried distilling gummie bears. It turned out lumpy, kind of blue and smelled sorta like fish? I didn’t drink any myself, but Mom’s canary sang funny for a week.”
Eddie gives a bark of a laugh before taking a large swallow of whiskey. “You like baseball?”
Andrew shakes his head and continues to look around the apartment. There are posters of pin-up girls on the walls, mostly the same woman. He wants to ask who she is, but isn’t sure how that would go over. From where he’s sitting he can see the door to Eddie’s guest room, his room for the summer. The room is Spartan: one window, no blinds, a dresser and a twin sized bed with sheets you could bounce quarters off of. It’s the only room in the apartment that didn’t reek of smoke.
“F*ck kid, you gotta give me something
.” As Eddie lights up a cigar his eyes turn thoughtful. “So, the guy who wrote the ‘Hokey Pokey’ died and everyone was all broken up about it. He was from this Podunk town that was only on the map ‘cause of this ****sucker. Anyway, the town plans this huge freakin’ parade, big ceremony. Seriously, you’d think the president died all the planning these dinks did.”
Andrew can’t help but stare at the man.
Eddie takes a long drag off his cigar and blows rings that float up over their heads. “Thing is, all that planning went down the crapper ‘cause the guy wouldn’t stay in his coffin. They’d put his left leg in and… well, you know the rest.”
“Wha-?” Andrew sputters, then snorts. If his giggles are more nervous than amused, Eddie doesn’t seem to care.
“It’s a joke, kid,” he grins, unhooking the smiley-faced pin he wears on his lapel and sticking it on the collar of Andrew’s tee-shirt. “You just gotta remember to laugh.”
It wasn’t until two weeks later that Andrew finally gets a chance to work on one of his assignments. Most days he ends up following Eddie around New York, visiting his old military buddies, or at least old buddies, some weren’t veterans, though Eddie never says how he knows them. They also saw the sights, albeit, most of Eddie’s ‘sights’ were places that served large, meaty sandwiches and beer. But, that was okay. While they had nothing in common, Eddie seemed to find some sort of strange amusement in his company. And, Andrew admits, Eddie is kind of growing on him too.
He checks the scrap paper with the address again. It was sort of illegible, but the demon bar had to be around there somewhere. He flips the collar of his Sunnydale High windbreaker up and stuffs his hands in his pockets. Eddie had gone to a poker game and wouldn’t be back until late. If he is going to do this, tonight is his best chance.
The neon sign read ‘Eat Here,’ or it would of, if all the e’s weren’t burnt out. He has to answer a series of three riddles to get in, although he doubts it’s that way for everyone. Demonic bouncers love messing with Watchers, especially Watchers in training.
His contact is an Oidan demon and there is only one sitting at the bar. Andrew makes his way over, mentally reviewing his Oidan pronunciation. “Are you H’orviard?”
“Howard,” the small, gnome-like creature corrects cordially. “Oh, and I hope you die a thousands deaths in the baking sun with nothing but urine to drink.”
Andrew blinks. He’d read Oidans liked to start negotiations off with insults, he just hadn’t realized they would be so… colorful. “Uh, I hope Jawas spit on your head and Ewoks eat your heart?”
“Ewoks? Nice!” Howard nods. “I hear you’re in the market for a Box of St. Onon? I have one, but it’ll cost you ten thousand, a Horn of Adonis and a mule.
“Don’t try to cheat me,” Andrew scoffs. “I was born at night. It wasn’t last night.”
Howard’s mouth shoots to a grin. “You’re a funny guy.”
“That’s actually my dad’s joke,” he admits, his hand coming up to touch the now ever present pin. He takes the seat next to Howard before asking, “how much do you really want for the Box?”
Howard gives him a shrewd look. “Two thousand and the Horn. Oh, and I still want that mule.”
Andrew sighs and signals the bartender for a ginger ale. This was going to take awhile.
By the time Andrew stumbles back it’s almost dawn. Buying the Box off Howard hadn’t been a problem, once the gnome had given up on the mule, getting the Box to the train station however… Somebody really
should have told him that a six inch square box could weigh over a hundred pounds. He unlocks the apartment door, cringing when he sees Eddie sitting on the couch, evidently waiting up for him.
“’Morning,” Eddie salutes him with an empty glass. He has a fat cigar in his mouth and the beginnings of a black eye. That’s right, the poker game.
“Did you win?” Andrew asks.
Eddie smirks, “didn’t lose.”
Andrew nods, absently running a hand through sweat soaked hair.
“Where were you?” Eddie asks, sounding genuinely curious.
“This, uh, place,” Andrew stammers, “I had some stuff to do.”
Eddie laughs. “Relax kid! I ain’t going to grill you. You’re adult, barely, but still. Sit.”
After cautiously making his way to the couch, Andrew sits down. Other than the fact that the man is his father, there are a lot of things Andrew doesn’t know about him. His official records had things blacked out in ink so dark even Wiccan hackers couldn’t read them. Not that Andrew has any room to talk, he has plenty of secrets of his own.
They sit there as the Sun comes up, Eddie smoking while Andrew desperately tries to think of something to say. Twenty unnerving minutes later, Andrew can’t take it anymore and jumps to his feet.
“I’m going to make breakfast. What do you want?” He asks. “I make a mean Romulan Toast. It’s like French toast only with more yolks and kiwi slices. Or I could make Eggs ala Xander, that is, if you have any Twinkies. Or I-"
“Andy, sit back down.” Eddie’s arm comes up to steady him. Andrew hadn’t even realized he’d been bouncing in place.
Andrew sits, trying not to fidget under the other man’s considering gaze.
“So, guy in a bell tower needs to hirer an assistant. His hump’s been acting up,” Eddie starts to explain. “Anyway, the first guy who applies is a gimp with no arms. Ol’ Lumpy asks him how the hell he’s going to ring the bell without arms and the guy shows him by running head first into the bell, which rings just as loud and clear as anybody could ever want. Trouble is, the second time he does it harder. You know, to show off. And wouldn’t you know, he bounces right off and falls out of the tower to his death. Then the cops come and start asking if anyone knows who he was.”
A few seconds pass as Eddie smokes, apparently content to wait him out. Finally, Andrew looks over. “Well?”
Eddie’s face splits into a huge grin. “Hunchback says, ‘I don’t know his name, but his face sure rings a bell!’”
Andrew rolls his eyes. “That’s just dumb.”
“Yeah,” Eddie agrees. “They’re all dumb jokes, Andy.”
At that moment, Andrew has the urge to tell him about Howard. About the Box, the train station, Slayers, even the First. He doesn’t, but he wants to, because, it is
kind of funny.
I’m on a huge Watchmen kick, indulge me :)
Reviews would be loved.