Rating: Mature Audiences – for content and themes
Summary: Anya utters a final garbled set of words that sets off a wish that will alter Xander’s existence forever…
Spoilers: Canon is Post S7 BtVS and S5 AtS.
Warnings: M/M – if you don’t like boys together, don’t play here! *Toys* and angst too… and lovin’ eventually
Disclaimer: Don’t own the characters nor make any money from stories etc, and bow down to their original creators Joss, et al., plus all the wonderful online writers who continue to give the Buffy/Angel verse characters life.
What followed was three weeks of frantic searching for the sorcerer as more and more stories of his cruelty and ruthlessness toward those resisting him came forward. A team of shape shifting demons scoured Seattle to no avail The demon communities were in disarray after the dusting of the Ruling Master St John and abduction, by force, of his two beautiful Childer. The shape shifters learned that the sorcerer had moved on – with his entourage and a swag of others too confused or distressed to stay. Sadly none of the Seattle Masters of Vampire Clans or demon families could shed light on the sorcerer’s next target.
It was a phonecall from Willow that stunned them all.
They knew that after the attack on Santiago, the sorcerer had moved on. The locator spell showing nothing for almost a month
The Sorcerer Barnardo’s threat was stopped in its tracks in Los Angeles by, of all things, a combined wish by three vengeance demons Barnardo had bedded, concurrently, during and after one of his soirees for the rich and dangerous. They had a further liaison, the girls flattered by his attentions and adoring their horizontal (most of the time) antics. But at the next ‘Barnardo’s bash’’ his current three girls in attendance, he was standing talking to a fellow sorcerer unaware that they were standing behind him.
He began the conversation as a promiscuous college boy might, graphically describing each girl’s best and worst features and their “average” prowess in the bedroom. He then went on to proclaim that their powers were of little use to anyone, their cause but petty retribution and methods arcane… he only kept them around for the sex. Adding insult to injury he compared D’Hoffran to some doddery doting Uncle with a bunch of catty school girls in tow.
D’Hoffran appeared without announcement as Willow’s walked to collect the mail for the coven. She let out a much younger Willow-like squeak of surprise then composed herself.
“My dear Miss Rosenburg, how lovely to see you looking so radiant, magic suits you, whatever the shade.”
Willow felt distinctly uncomfortable but still managed a, “Well… thanks I think… um… You’re here for…?”
“I have heard from a number of my girls regards a certain Sorcerer Barnardo’s antics here on earth, not that I particularly care regards who is ‘in charge’ as you seem to be. But he has hurt three of my girls, used them and publicly scorned them. He also made a point of insulting me – of course that matters little to me, but for the girls it was insult to injury, I am their elder in our happy family.
“Well a vengeance demon cannot make a wish herself. As a consequence, I wonder if you would mind assisting us?”
“OK I’m listening…Assisting you how?”
“I thought you might oblige us by delivering the wish.”
Willow thought for a moment, they had never come close to defeating the mage, not really.“Well I… But hang on mister, don’t I have to be scorned by him or something?”
“Ohh, I think we can get around that little loophole given the participants, the number involved and the circumstances. You too have been betrayed in your day. We will simply hold hands and you repeat the wish.”
“This isn’t some *trick* to make me one of you is it? Because mister…if you…” Willow’s ire was up and her eyes started to change.
“Oh my dear lady, not at all, not at all. Your magical strength is too much for anything to happen should you not will it. I am merely proposing a win-win situation. I give my girls satisfaction and you rid yourself of that pompous, trumped up schoolboy of a sorcerer.
That evening, standing on the lawn of the coven, far enough away from the wards so as not to set them off, D’Hoffran introduced each girl before the joining hands to form a circle.
D’Hoffran nodded to Willow, “Go ahead my dear.”
Willow simply said, “I wish that the Sorcerer Bernardo knew what it felt like to be…” then waited as each girl added her particular part which Willow would repeat.
A rather dumpy but pretty faced Ellie spoke first, “I wish he knew what it felt like to be laughed at for looking different.” Willow duly repeated the last part then it was the rather elegant brunette, Alice’s turn.
“And that he lost all his magical powers,” Willow added the request before Penny (who reminded Willow of Cordelia somehow) added the last part, “And had to live as some rich lady’s, neutered, small lapdog for the rest of his life.”
As Willow finished, her eyes turned black and all the three girls shifted to their demon faces and along with D’Hoffran said, “Done”. There was a bright flash but the effects were felt half way around the world as on Sorcerer Barnardo disappeared from a meeting in a puff of blue smoke to the annoyance and amazement of the rest of the group.
Stripped of his powers he found himself in a cage waiting for ‘adoption’. He was in the body of a Hairless Chinese Crested dog, bug eyed and tiny, and devoid of hair but for a few odd white tufts on his ears, forehead and tail, and white ‘socks’ on his paws.
He refused to eat for a full day but finally some of the dry food on offer, and barked his distress until only able to whine pathetically, and ceased them too when the large (in comparison) corgi in the next cage growled his disapproval. He eventually curled up on the old towel that served as a bed and on instinct beginning to lick his genitals and realised, to his horror, he had been ‘fixed’! Bald as a badger (and wasn’t that a silly statement considering his predicament) and bereft of balls!
The following day he had refused to cooperate with the handlers when they came to clip on his leash ready for a walk – even nipping at one, and getting a rather hard smack on the nose for his trouble. When the hands came in again he repeated the gesture, receiving the same response and while still in shock from the strike was caught expertly and had a tiny muzzle applied.
After six days as a canine, he was over being giggled at and insulted by the many humans who wandered through seeking a ‘real dog not some freaky thing’, a large woman with expensive jewellery, coiffed bleach blonde hair and an unfortunate case of halitosis, approached his cage. She and ooh and ahhed over him, then called over a handler.
In a distinctly Texan accent, she pointed at his cage, “I want to ask you a few questions about this one?”
“Sure Ma’am. What’s it you want to know?”
“It says here on the cage that he is a one year old; definitely pure bred but has no papers? What were the circumstances of his coming to you?”
“Ma’am, he was handed in by a family who bought him from a pet shop – pretty unusual to find them sold like that really. The breed are usually really sweet natured but apparently this one got a bit nippy with the kids, so they brought him in here. If you ask my opinion Ma’am, he just needs some proper training. Now that he’s neutered it should help also Ma’am, tends to calm ‘em down.”
The ex-sorcerer whimpered at that statement.
“Yes well, he would be a nice addition I think, even matches the new colour scheme perfectly… I went with a slightly oriental look…” She stared hard at the rather forlorn brown eyes, “And health?”
“Oh generally very good Ma’am – just need to watch the sunburn if you’re having him walked – human sunscreen does the trick. And a bit susceptible to skin allergies, but that’s mostly older dogs. If you keep the diet pretty strict and exercise him, he should live to around 15.”
“This all sounds mighty fine, I’ll take him.” Then she leaned down almost pressing her face to the door of the cage and said, “I’m your new Momma pumpkin… and I think we just found you a name, Pumpkin.”
‘Pumpkin’ was lifted into a travel cage, and whisked to Mrs Lorraine Taggerty’s newly redecorated apartment. Her full time house keeper took charge of the pampered pet paraphernalia then on the lady of the house’s request, had plonked the rather surprised little dog into the bath and thoroughly washed him.
What little hair he had was blow dried and a red patent leather collar attached. After being introduced to bed and bowl, he was lifted onto a very ample lap and forced to settle. This was to be his life 15 dog years that was 105 in human terms… no power plays, no magic, no intrigue or… dare he think it, sex. Instead he would be ‘trained’, pampered yes, but no longer was his life his own. He slumped down onto his soft warm owner in utter despair, Lorraine interpreting it as a sign of devotion and petted his newly washed head.
Part 18 & Final to come