Disclaimer: I own none of the characters or products named in this
story and make no profit from it.
Summary: A mysterious carnival appears on the outskirts of Sunnydale.
Despite the sudden disappearance of townspeople and pets, Xander is
intrigued and wants a closer look. What he gets is more than he could
This story is based on a suggested story idea from the lovely Mystic Oblivion.
As always, thanks to the wonderful Petxnd for the banners that put the perfect
visual to my words.
Buffy woke up slowly. She knew immediately where she was, and with who.
The memory of everything she had done earlier came back to her in the form
of sore painful muscles that screamed with each and every move she attempted
They had fallen asleep only a couple hours ago when, thankfully, Angelus had
decided he had had enough. Buffy had collapsed in relieved exhaustion.
Angelus' stamina and imagination had maxed out even her slayer strength and
she had fallen asleep almost as soon as he pulled out.
Squinting one eye open, she recognized the back of the blond head of the girl,
no, vampire, that was curled up behind him. Buffy lifted her head slightly and
could see that Angelus was still sleeping like the dead on the other side.
Although slightly shocked and disgusted by the things they had all done
together, introspection had never been a personality trait that plagued
Still, this situation was one she understood could not continue as is.
Quietly, she eased back and slipped silently from the nest, all the time watching
the two vampires for any sign that they might stir or wake. Cautiously, she
placed one bare foot in front of the other till she had stealthily slipped from
the small trailer bedroom. The cool early evening air chilled her naked, sweat
dampened body and she shivered.
Once she stepped out of the room, she felt around in the dark on the floor
till she located her backpack where it had fallen earlier. Her hands fished
further till her fingers made contact with the secure, familiar feel of the
sharp wooden stake.
Immediately, she scooped it up and rose to her feet. She then retraced
her silent steps back into the bedroom and to the side of the nest that
had been hers. Without making a sound or saying a word, she raised her
arm high and, in an arc, brought it down.
The thing that had, at one time, been Harmony, exploded into a cloud of dust.
Quickly, she covered her mouth and nose to prevent any inhalation that might
make her choke or cough.
When the cloud settled, Buffy stood looking at the other vampire, the piece
of sharp wood still gripped tightly in her fist. Finally, with a sigh, she tossed it
to the floor and brushed aside the pile of ash that soiled the musty sheets and
she crawled over, claiming her spot next to Angelus.
She then closed her eyes and dozed back off.
Angelus grinned. He had awakened the moment she had stirred and, through
one squinted eye, had watched her every move. He was fairly sure she
wouldn't raise wood against him, but if she had, he would be ready.
Harmony, on the other hand, was not ready. She was stupid. She was an
inexperienced fledge. She was expendable.
He relaxed, allowing her to spoon her warm, living flesh up against him
and as soon as he detected her slowed heartbeat and the shallow breathing
pattern of sleep, he too succumbed.
Xander had no idea where they were headed but he knew better than to ask.
By being late, he was already in enough trouble. Questioning Spike
as to his intentions would only make things worse. Besides that, Spike
had given the distinct impression that who ever they were off to see
would have a lot of the answers Xander needed too.
Still being guided by the painful clamp on the back of his neck, Xander
was steered first left then right, straight ahead and finally round the bend,
stopping in front of a small tent with a banner that touted the amazing
fortune telling powers of a Dark Princess named Drusilla.
A week ago, Xander would have snorted and snickered at such trife.
Now, he knew better and he did not want to go in. Digging his heels
into the dirt and sawdust Xander tried to pull free. Like a child resisting
a trip to the pediatrician, he squirmed and struggled.
"No. No, Spike I don't wanna."
Spike quickly used his free hand to swat the boy soundly on the seat of
"Get your arse in there and shut your mouth when you do."
One more shove and they were in. Xander's eyes darted wildly around and
he was relieved to see that they were alone in the small dark confinement.
Suddenly, a curtain in the far end of the tent flipped back and a tall thin dark
haired woman swooped in. She sang softly and swayed to the tune of her
own voice, seemingly unaware of their presence.
Spike spoke to her in a soft, gentle voice.
"Dru, my Love. I need a bit of an assist."
Slowly, her face turned and the fog over her eyes cleared as her vision
"William. My sweet child. My William. The moon has aligned with a
new star. A fire star that could burn us but the moon is full and it's power
is strong. We shall make a wish on the falling star as it tumbles from the
Xander looked to Spike for an explanation, but Spike just nodded.
"Dru love, that isn't why we are here. I need to ask you something.
The boy here. Is he the one? I'm think he is but I need to know. I
need to be certain."
Spike shoved him forward and Drusilla turned as though she were just
now aware of Xander's presence in the room. She glided over to him
and stepped around behind him. She tipped her head back and inhaled
deeply, her eyes rolling back in her head. She then stepped away.
"You have not claimed him?"
"Right that! How would I look, claiming a human and being stuck with him
for years when he wasn't the right one. Right foolish, that's how. I need
to be sure, Love. Is he the one you told me to expect?"
Drusilla stood behind Xander's terrified, trembling body and she ran her
long, thin fingers up through his hair, cupping his scalp. She closed her
eyes and hummed.
"An unwilling pet can be beaten into submission but it will never
be the companion you crave. It can be forced to walk a step behind
but then must be feared that it will act unseen. A true pet must prove
it's devotion. It must chose it's master by free will. If it passes the test
thrust upon it, it will walk along side."
Xander shook his head in confusion and waited to hear Spike explode in
frustration. In the short time they had been together, he knew patience
was not a quality Spike contained in bucket loads.
Much to his surprise, Spike grinned and leaned over kissing the woman
on the cheek.
He then gripped Xander painfully by the upper arm and he pulled him out
of the tent, heading back in the direction they had come
"Let's go, Boy. I believe you have an arse whipping coming."