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.
Spike lay flat on his back, nude on his small tent cot. He yawned and
stretched like a lion basking in the afternoon heat of an African sun.
With his eyes closed, he let his other senses fill him with all the wonderful
things that are his pet. He listened as the boy hustled around the room,
whistling and pouring water from a jug into a wash basin. He inhaled,
filling his nose with the scent of Xander's spent seed and sweat and he
licked his lips, tasting the last tang of the human's sweet warm blood on the
tip of his tongue.
Spike arched his back then went completely limp as his new pet proceeded
to tend to him. A deep, low rumbling purr emanating from his chest as the
cool damp cloth started first on his chest and arms, then continued on to
clean his musky cock and balls.
He made no effort to assist, requiring his pet to lift each leg and roll each nut.
It was glorious and Spike would have been more than content to lie there
and indulge for the rest of the night. However, Spike discovered that the
privileges and joys of new pet ownership would apparently have to wait when,
unexpectedly, a wrinkled, floppy demon stumbled through the canvass flap.
Xander remembered the creature from the freak show tent and he scampered
up on the bed beside his master.
Clem tipped his head back, chuckled and sniffed.
"Spike. Hey, Spike you awake?"
Spike moaned. It must be true. There is literally no rest for the wicked.
"Go away Clem. 'm busy."
Clem grinned and eased forward, tugging nervously on one droopy ear.
"Wow. This your new pet? The whole carnival is talking about him.
We can't wait to get our hands......I mean we can't wait to see him."
Spike lazily reached over and ran his hand through the thick brown hair.
Xander relaxed slightly at his Master's touch. When Spike peeked one eye
open, he was annoyed to see Clem still there.
"Well, what is it?"
Clem scratched his nose and snorfled.
"Angelus says to tell you to get ready. We gotta go. Carnival needs to
move within the hour."
"Fine. We're ready."
Xander sat up and pulled away.
"I'm not. I gotta go home and get some stuff. Clothes, comics, a handheld.
You know. Stuff I might need."
Spike blinked in confusion. He then turned his head and stared at the boy,
"Pet, you are not going anywhere. Whatever you have with you is what
you will take."
Xander climbed off the bed and put his hands on his hips.
"You can't tell me what to do. If I wanna go home, I will. I mean yeah,
I'm cool with the master/pet thing but, you ain't totally the boss of me."
Spike's eyes sloooowly squinted to slits. Although speaking to Clem, he
never took his gaze off his insolent pet.
"Run along now Mate. Tell the big cheese that we will be ready to go
in just a few."
Clem nodded vigorously, flaps of skin rippling as he turned to rush off.
As soon as he stepped outside the tent, he heard the unmistakable sound of
a hand connecting sharply against bare flesh and the boy howling.
"I'm sorry. I'm sorry. Ow! Ow! Spiiiiike"
Clem grinned showing at least two rows of razor sharp fangs as he scurried away.
Guided by the older man, the three would-be heroes divided up the torches,
binding them together with bailing twine and slung their bundles over their
shoulders. Each tucked a book of matches in their pocket and verified their
The mood among them was much lighter and bordered on jovial when Willow
had returned moments earlier with the crystal in hand. Spelled to find Xander,
it had beamed and pulsed with a strength and intensity that could only mean he
was alive and well.
While they finished their preparations, they indulged and a round of 'I'll bet he is....'
Willow started with "I'll bet he is at McDonalds eating a big Mac."
Buffy countered with "No, I'll bet he is taking a nap."
Giles tried to join in by adding "I'll bet he is doing his homework."
That one earned an extra loud laugh as they realized that Giles really didn't know
their friend at all.
None of the three put voice to the one thought that they all prayed against. No
one would consider that Xander might already be at the carnival.
After checking his watch, Giles threw his pack onto his back.
"That's it. We need to go now. I'll take the lead through the woods and
when we reach the tree line, we spread out. Don't waste any time.
Immediately light the torches and toss them into anything you think will burn.
Willow, you stay to the rear and keep the crystal in your hand. Keep an
eye on it and if it indicates that Xander is there, we will start the burn on
the opposite end of the field. We will do our best to find him, but we can't
risk letting the sun set and the vampire rise. Do you two understand what
I am saying?"
Willow snatched up her sticks.
"Yeah, you are saying Xander is expendable. If we have to, we let him die."
Giles placed a fatherly hand on her shoulder and spoke softly but firmly.
"Willow, in the bigger scheme of things, in the overall picture, we are all
With no further comment, she turned and stomped away. The other two
shared a glance and followed. Within minutes they crossed the line and headed
into the woods. Looking down, Willow was startled to see the crystal change.
Where it was blue before, it now glowed blood red. She was stunned but far too
frightened to ask Giles what that could mean. Nothing in the spell books had
mentioned this aberration.
Moving quickly they darted through the trees and down the dirt path. When they
approached the huge maple, Willow cried out and the other's stopped. Giles ran
back to where she stood, hand open, staring at the crystal.
"Willow, what is it? What's wrong?"
Willow looked up at her mentor with tears in her eyes.
"It's hot. Giles, it's hot and it's changed. It's nearly burning my AAAHHH!"
Willow screamed in terror as the crystal slowly rose, floating up from her hand. It
began spinning in the air like a child's top, and finally burst, exploding into a million
multicolored glass shards that lit up the night sky.
Unaware of the dozen small cuts the glass had put on her face and hands, Willow
tossed down her torches and dashed for Kutter's Field as fast as her legs would
carry her. Buffy and Giles were right on her heels.
When they reached the clearing, Willow skidded to an abrupt stop and again
screamed her disbelief.
The field was empty. There was no sign that a carnival had ever been there.
Rushing through it, she was stunned to see the tall grass and wildflowers
swaying, undisturbed and untrampled as though the only weight placed upon them
was the morning dew.
Buffy scratched her head.
"Giles? I don't get it? Where the hell did it go? There's nothing here.'"
Before the watcher could answer, Willow called from the far end of the clearing.
"Wait. I found something! Look!"
The other two ran to join her and Giles tried to see what she was cradling in
"Good Lord. It appears to be a stuffed bat."
Holding it high in the air, Willow spun in a full circle shouting to the stars and
She then clutched the cheap toy to her chest, dropped to her knees and
sobbed. Rocking back and forth she rubbed her face on the soft cotton
wings and whispered.
"Good bye, Xander. I love you. Some day I'll find you. I'll never stop
looking. I promise. I promise."