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.
Kim Li knew if he had been a bit more flexible, he would have
kicked himself in the ass. What had seemed like the right thing to
do at the time now, in retrospect, was probably the biggest mistake
of his life.
Xander was his best friend and had been for the past eight years.
He gave an uneducated, dancing, rent boy the chance to improve
himself in life and work his way up to a managerial position he knew he
hadn't been qualified for. But Xander had faith in him and Kim had
done all he could to prove that faith was not misplaced.
For that and a million other reasons, Kim loved Xander. He loved
Xander with all his heart and would sell his soul if that love were returned,
but it wasn't and Kim knew what they had was better than nothing.
It was more than a friendship. It was a relationship.
He also knew Xander had serious issues. Repression issues that
centered around his past and the final days before the fall of Sunnydale.
Kim respected that and never pushed, even when his curiosity nearly
drove him to distraction.
He knew Xander went out of town and he knew what his friend
That was another issue that was out of bounds.
Kim spoke briefly with the cleaning crew, giving them instructions to
spend more time on the floors in the back room and letting them know
that no one had replaced the toilet paper in the restrooms.
He tried to keep his mind on business but the fact was, Kim was
unsettled. He was distracted and angry with himself for what he had
done. He had never seen Xander as upset as he was this evening and
Kim knew that by giving his friend that stranger's card, he had probably
added fuel to the fire.
Kim remembered the look on Xander's face as he turned the card over
and over in his hand. He had mumbled something about an angel
and stared at the hotel information on the back. In that instant, Kim
knew he had made a mistake.
He begged Xander to let him drive him home. Xander refused. He told
Xander not to go see the strange blond man until he had calmed down.
Xander promised he wouldn't. Kim knew a lie when he heard one.
He had offered to go with his friend. That offer was rejected with the most
force. Whatever was going on, Xander did not want Kim involved.
With all the details seen to, Kim locked the back door of the club and
turned in the direction of home. He lived only a mile away and often
walked to clear his mind. Tonight he needed that time more than
usual to decide what to do. Somehow, he would help Xander.
Whether his friend wanted that help or not.
The night was dark, overcast and moonless. A heavy damp blanket of
fog engulfed the area and made visibility less than five feet in all directions.
Despite the gloomy, ominous feel, Kim loved this time of the early morning.
It reminded him of home. Not San Francisco, where he grew up, but
home-home. The place of his childhood. Korea, where he was happy.
Where he was Kim Li, son of local fisherman Yung Li.
It was mornings just like this that he remembered walking with his Father.
They would hurry through the dirt roads of their small village down to
the pier where his Father had a rickety fishing boat. Kimmy, as his
parents called him, was too young to go to school so he went fishing
with his father while his Mother went into the city to clean house for
the rich people.
It was wonderful. He was happy and loved. Apparently he was poor.
Fortunately, no one told Kimmy that. The bubble burst one day when
he was nearly seven. His parents told him he was to be sent to America
to live with an uncle for a better education.
Kimmy cried and life was never the same. Especially when he reached
his teens and the uncle who had never wanted him in the first place,
realized he was gay. Kim Li became another resident of the streets.
Luckily, he could dance. That was about the same time Xander bought
Fabulous and Kim's life took a whole new turn.
Flipping the collar of his windbreaker up around his neck to offer a
minimum of protection against the heavy, damp fog, Kim started towards
The more he thought about it the more anxious he became to get there.
He needed to speak to Xander. To call him the minute he got home.
To satisfy himself that he didn't go the blond's hotel room.
Kim's step increased and he moved faster through the darkness. He
knew he could trim at least five minutes off his walk time if he cut through
the park up ahead. There was a jogging path that wound through a
kiddy park with swings and a slide and cut diagonally across the block.
Kim reached the park right on schedule and lifted the rusty latch on
the iron gate. He pushed it open and slipped in, allowing it to slam
shut behind him.
The air was wet and silent around him. There was no breeze or sound.
It was as if he were the last person alive on the face of the earth.
Kim shuddered. He told himself it was from the cold and not the eerie
spooky park. The fog was so dense it obliterated the view of the path
in front of him. The further he went, the more disoriented Kim felt.
Clutching his jacket tighter, Kim thought he detected a movement ahead.
A slight shifting of a shadow somewhere off to the side of the gravel path.
Slowing slightly, Kim kept his eyes on the spot where he........THERE!
He saw it again. A man. There was a dark figure of a man standing
with his back turned.
Kim's heartbeat pounded and the cold damp air rushed in and out of
his lungs. The fear curled in his stomach and he knew he had now made
two terrible mistakes this evening. Walking home and walking home on
this particular path.
His mind blasted him with the pictures from the evening news of the
smiling men who had recently disappeared without a trace. He
wondered if any of them had taken this particular stroll.
Swallowing the lump that was wedged in his throat, Kim refused to
turn and run. He was a man. He would continue on and pass this
figure that had, admittedly, made no threatening moves toward him.
Kim's eyes locked on the man's back and he knew just a few feet more
and he would be past. Kim picked up the pace, never tearing his eyes
from the man who now was slowly turning towards him.
Kim blinked. The heavy grey fog distorted his vision and gave the illusion
that the man's feet had no part in his movement, as though he were inches
from the ground.
'Almost past. Almost past. Almost.........'
Kim's thoughts froze in mid sentence. He had reached the man who
had now turned to fully face him. Even in the dark and the thick damp
mist, Kim recognized him.
"Xander? Shit, Xan, you scared the hell out of me. What the fuck are
you doing out here?"
Kim chuckled his relief and mentally told his bladder to stand down.
"Damn, Buddy, I thought you were a serial killer or Freddy Krueger
Kim laughed weakly, wiped sweat from his brow and shifted on his
shaky legs. Every muscle in his body shook like jello.
"Hey, wanta go to my place? I need a fuckin' drink after that.
Hell, I need a whole fuckin' bottle after a scare like that."
The dark figure remained silent. His face showed no comradery, no
smile, no response, no recognition. His dark eyes seemed to burn holes
in Kim's face and the smaller man began to think he had released his
fear a bit too soon.
"Xan? Hey, man, you o.k? Look, I gotta get home, I'll see ya tomorrow, k?"
Before Kim had the chance to step away, the figure opened his mouth and
a low whispery sound, like crackling paper, flowed out. Despite his
internal alarms, Kim stepped closer to his friend.
"What? What did you say? I can't hear you. What?"
Suddenly the dark figure's mouth dropped open wide. Wider than
Kim, if he had thought about it, would have known was possible. Even
in the dim, dark night, Kim could see easily into his friends gaping mouth.
There were no teeth, no tongue, nothing. Nothing but blackness.
Horror rushed through him and Kim knew he was glimpsing hell. Kim
took a step back intending to run for his life but found he couldn't move.
Instantly, the mouth opened even wider and the sound emitting from
it now became loud, shrill and eardrum shattering, stopping Kim in
"AGH! Damn, stop!"
Kim slapped his hands over his ears and dropped his head against the
piercing, pain wracking sound that seemed to be going through his
brain like a knife.
With his eyes scrunched closed in agony, Kim never saw the face of his
friend as it disappeared. Replaced, consumed by the black hole that
now opened to a space of three feet in diameter.
The sound never waivered.
Suddenly, the still, quiet air around the men began to move. The leaves,
cigarette butts and trash paper that littered the ground lifted and swirled
around Kim's feet. The dark, now headless, figure threw it's arms out at
his sides and the whirlwinds increased.
The fog seemed to come alive and the force of the current gripped,
jerked and tugged at the legs of Kim's pants. The rest of the park
around them sat motionless as though waiting to see what horrors
were taking place in their innocent space.
The figure's arms lifted higher, at the same time the black hole grew
larger and the agonizing sound even louder. With an overwhelming
'WHOOSH' of air, Kim's body was lifted horizontally into the air,
the top of his head aimed directly at the ominous black cavern that
had been his friend's face.
With a terrifying certainty, Kim knew what was coming.
Suddenly, with a roar, and a huge rush, the air turned to a vacuum and Kim
felt his body being sucked forward, head first, into the terrifying cavity. His
arms flailed for anything solid to grip onto but found only the wet molecules
His body flew as his screams echoed in the deep empty openness.
As the last of his feet disappeared, the air resounded with a loud crack,
a sound so earsplitting and final it could have been the God Zeus cracking
a giant bullwhip.
Before the last of the sound had faded, both men were gone.
Gently, all the whirling litter and debris settled back to the ground and no
trace of any being, human or beast remained. In relief, nature itself sighed
and the fog began to lift.
The first brave cricket released a timid "chirp"