WARNING: m/m sexual activity. Adult language. Story is generally
SUMMARY: 10 Years after the fall of Sunnydale, Xander has
distanced himself from his past life until a demon forces him to look
DISCLAIMER: I own nothing including the characters and products
named in this story. I do, however own an unused treadmill. If you
want to sue for that, help yourself.
Thanks to the wonderful Petxnd for the excellent banner.
Xander paced restlessly around his spacious, brightly lit townhouse.
He walked from room to room picking up a magazine, moving
a fake flower arrangement, checking the alignment of the pictures
on the walls.
He turned up the stereo to drown out the noise in his head.
He loved his home. He had bought it several years ago and it was a
symbol of his success. It was his sanctuary. His safe place. But today
it felt strange and foreign. He was restless and claustrophobic
His headache was worse and so far the four Tylenol he had taken
couldn't even touch it.
Kim had insisted he go home and after much arguing, he finally agreed.
Kim had wanted him to go to a doctor. Xander refused. Kim had
insisted that he drive Xander home. Xander declined the offer.
The only concession Xander made was that he agreed maybe an
evening's rest was in order.
He wasn't worried about the business. Kim had often managed the
club and had always done a good job, no Xander's reluctance to
leave was more due to the fact that he really didn't want to be alone.
Yet, here he was.
The cloud of unknown doom was hanging dark and heavy.
It was a familiar feeling.
Xander kept telling himself nothing was wrong. He felt like a liar.
Going to the kitchen, he made himself a cup of tea and sat at the
table stirring it to the point of beating it into a froth.
"O.k." He told himself. "Calm down. I had nothing to do with
those men that disappeared. If the cops come here, they can't connect
me to anything."
But deep down, Xander knew it wasn't the law he was afraid of.
What terrified him was something long hidden. Something he had
turned his back on. Something he thought he had left behind in the
Xander continued to talk to himself. He examined the facts and tried to
reason away the sick feeling in the pit of his stomach.
But logic was apparently not the cure for this ailment and Xander's
gut twisted up threatening to reject the tea that sat cooling in front
"Fuck. Fuck. FUCK!"
Xander put his head down on his crossed arms and let the tears fall.
Unable to stop, he cried till he was exhausted.
He cried himself to sleep.
Xander looked all around. He knew he was standing in his old
high school and he knew he wasn't alone. Looking down at himself
he was surprised to see he was wearing one of the bright, wildly
flowered shirts of his youth. As he stared at it, he realized the small
bugs that sat on the petals of the flowers were moving, crawling.
Swatting one only caused the others to grow and scramble.
Xander's body was quickly coated in a layer of roaches.
Xander smacked at himself, causing what seemed like hundreds
of cockroach type bugs to fall from his body onto the floor skittering
around his feet.
Fumbling and stumbling backward, his back hit the cement block wall
and when he looked again, the bugs were gone.
Before Xander had the chance to consider what had just happened, a
new sound caught his attention. It was the sound of cheers, shouts
and activity. Drawn to the security of the familiar noise he hurried
off in the direction of the school gymnasium.
People. Just what he needed.
Now at a full run, Xander rushed down the hallway as the noise of an
apparent basketball game comforted him with it's normalcy. That
must be why he was here. He had come to watch Sunnydale win the
championship. Who were they playing? He couldn't remember.
The closed double doors were directly ahead and Xander slapped his
palms flatly against them, pushing his way in, the roar of the crowd
The second he stepped in the sound stopped. Total silence surrounded
him. He froze before turning in circles.
Everything was as he expected. Flood lights illuminated the gym.
The bleachers were full. Students, teachers, parents, friends and family.
The players were on the floor along with the scantily clad cheerleaders.
Everything was as it should be with one big exception.
Everyone was dead. Butchered. Slaughtered like cattle.
The floor and walls were splattered with the blood of the corpses who
lay where they had sat, their heads torn form their bodies, arms, legs,
eyeballs, all tossed about like litter from the snack bar.
The smell of death was all consuming. Xander gagged as the
feeling of lightheadedness took him over.
He slapped his hand over his mouth to prevent the scream that
wanted to escape. His lungs burned from too much oxygen as he
hyperventilated from the terror.
He wanted to run, he knew whatever had done this was still here, but
his feet seemed to be nailed to the floor. Staring down, he watched
as the rivets of blood flowed ever closer to his second hand Reeboks.
It flowed and pooled around him.
Suddenly, something solid slammed into his back.
Screeching, Xander spun around to see a basketball roll away from
where it had bounced off him.
It was just what he needed to break him out of his paralysis.
Turning to run, his feet slid in the pools of blood as he darted back out
into the hallway.
His next thought was the library. He would try to find that nice Mr. Giles.
He would know what to do. He would have the answers. Mr. Giles
always knew the answers.
Xander started off. Running in the direction of the English department,
he passed a series of classrooms. All empty. Except one.
As he passed it, a figure moved in the darkness. He paused.
Xander stopped. She was just as he remembered her. His Willow.
His best friend. Small, sweet, smiling.
"Willow. We have to go. There is something here. It killed everyone
and I think it's after us."
Before she could answer, the building rumbled, shifted, moved.
Xander threw up his arms. Earthquakes in California were common,
but this one felt different.
"Did you feel that? Willow?"
"It's almost here, Xander. We have to stick together. It's stronger
than us. It will always be stronger. Buffy says we can't fight
it unless we stick together."
Xander shook his head in confusion.
"Who? Buffy who?"
Xander took a step closer to where Willow stood in the darkness of
the empty classroom. Each step forward he took was matched
with her's backward till she seemed to blend into the shadows.
"Willow, wait. I can't see you."
Feeling his way into the dark room, Xander tripped over a desk,
cracking his shin painfully.
"Ow. Willow? You here? Please, Willow we have to go. We have
Feeling around, he finally felt the softness of her hair and relief
washed through him. He wasn't alone. His Willow was still here.
Grabbing her arm he tried pulling her to him but got no response.
"Come on. Get up."
Just as his impatience started to turn to anger, a bolt of lightning
cracked in the sky causing an explosion of light to fill the room. That
was when he realized two things.
First, the woman he was pulling on was not Willow.
Immediately the strange name, Anya, filled his brain and he knew that
somehow he knew her. Part of his brain wanted to remember her but
he wouldn't allow it.
Secondly, the fact that her body was sliced nearly in half meant that
Anya would not be coming with him.
"Ahhh!" He shoved her bloody corpse away from him and fell
backward just in time to hear a disembodied voice echoing over
the school's loudspeaker system.
"It's opening! The mouth is opening! You're out of time, Xander.
You're next to die."
Xander turned and bolted from the classroom and the hacked up
body of the woman he was certain had once been important to him.
He hit the hallway and ran.
Every one of his senses was reacting to the shock and terror that surged
through his straining body, yet his brain was still trying to find some
logical understanding of what was happening.
Looking ahead, every hallway he entered seemed to have exit signs
hanging at all turns. Most led to more classrooms or solid walls.
Xander was beginning to realize with sickening certainty that
there was no way out.
"Xander. Here. Catch"
Xander skidded to a stop. Turning toward a darkened alcove, he saw
a small blond woman.
"Buffy?" The name rolled off his lips before his mind could search
for her name.
"It's right behind you Xander. You are the one it wants. You can't hide
anymore. It's time to stand and fight."
Buffy tossed Xander an ax which he easily caught in one hand.
It felt right. It felt natural.
"Buffy, I don't.........."
Whatever else he wanted to say was forgotten. Xander felt the hot breath
and smelled the suffocating stench of sulfur directly behind him.
Spinning on his heels, Xander turned, raised the ax, and stared into
the face of death.
Xander's own screams woke him up as he tumbled from his chair and scrambled
into the corner of his kitchen. Pulling his knees to his chest, he rocked,
whimpering and repeating.
"No no no no no no."
The driver of the sleek black BMW that was parked at the curb had heard
the screams. He listened for a minute then started the car and slowly