It'd been three days since the prom, where Xander had been brutally snubbed by the awards committee and failed to win the coveted class clown award. Anya and Faith had done their best to cheer him up and in return he'd taught Faith how to pick handcuffs while Anya happily added a level of difficulty to any escape attempt. You could say Xander was in quite a good mood when he prepared for his first test.
Xander put on his gauntlet and strapped the bright yellow shoebox sized package to his left arm before putting on his backpack and double checking everything, including the ring on his left hand. Deciding to play it safe he turned on the TV and typed in 'live all girl wrestling' to find a safe world.
"And Suzy is going for that merit badge in body bending as she suplexes Tina 'the Tiny Terror' Slyvin," the announcer said while a pair of young girl scouts in full outfits rolled around the ring.
"Let's try that again," Xander said with a grin as he typed 'live all women wrestling'.
"Chyma has Chrysie on the ropes!"
Nodding to himself he typed the dimensional frequency into his gauntlet and pointed it at the wall. Taking a deep breath he hit the enter key and the air in front of him quivered, opening up a blue vortex that he threw himself into before he could change his mind. It only took a split second, but it felt like nearly a minute to him as he tumbled through the spiraling vortex only to be spit out into a nearly identical basement covered in cobwebs and dust. He closed his eyes and laid there letting the adrenaline rush fade when someone landed on him with their crotch in his face.
"Anya?" he asked.
"How'd you guess?" she asked climbing off him.
"Smell of your shampoo," he replied.
"Where are we?" she asked.
"Parallel dimension," he replied. "How'd you get here?"
"I was coming over for a nooner when I saw you vanish into a vortex and for some reason I foolishly leapt after you."
"Well I appreciate it anyway," he assured her as he looked around the dusty basement noting the lack of any of his tools or projects.
"So about that nooner?" she said hopefully.
"You want to have a nooner now?"
"It's not a problem is it?"
Xander opened his mouth and paused. "Not really," he decided, "but let's make sure we're safe and won't be interrupted first."
Taking the stairs up from the basement he quickly looked around the house. A lot of pictures and his mom's favorite things were gone, but everything else looked the same, just like it'd been abandoned for some time.
"Let's see if my bed is still here," he suggested, leading her up the stairs to his room.
His room was surprisingly clean compared to his actual room, much less the rest of this version of his house, someone had even made his bed. The sound of Anya's clothes hitting the floor distracted him from any further investigation and it wasn't until nearly forty minutes later when they were both dressed again that he considered the matter. "I think someone's been keeping my room clean like some sort of shrine."
"I don't know, maybe I died here."
"You better keep out of sight while we search for a way home then, or someone might try to stake you thinking you're a vamp," Anya informed him.
"Search for a way home?" Xander asked confused.
"Home, where we have all our stuff," she pointed out. "I'm not that attached to it, but I have some quite nice things I like and Faith is also there."
Xander put his gauntlet back on. "I opened the portal on purpose, this was just a test. I can get us home whenever we want."
"That's pretty high level magic," she said impressed.
"High level science," he corrected her. "Me and mojo don't mix all that well."
"Still impressive. So, did you come here to clean out your dead self's bank accounts?"
"No, but I could clean out my secret stashes now that you mention it."
"While you do that, I can see if my local self is alive, if she is I'll find out what happened to you, if not I'll clean out her bank accounts," Anya said cheerfully.
"OK, but be back here before nightfall, I have to make an appearance at home so my parents don't think I'm missing."
"Will do," Anya said, as Xander showed her how to leave by the trellis so no one would see her.
With Anya gone he started searching the house finding several of his stashes were empty but still coming up with several hundred dollars and his hidden weapons and comics. He was kicking back on his bed reading the Dark Phoenix cycle when Anya climbed in the window wearing different clothes and started stripping. He briefly gave thanks to the fact that he was a teenage male and reached for the condoms Anya had left on the nightstand.
"I hope you're well rested," she teased and proceeded to wipe his mind clean of rational thought.
Over and hour later, feeling slightly dehydrated, Xander collapsed and a second Anya climbed in the window with a suitcase.
"I got all our stuff," the second Anya said.
"Um, what's going on?" Xander asked.
"Something happened and all the males died six months ago," the Anya lying naked next to him explained. "The sperm banks were quickly used up, so the human race isn't going to die out, but as you can imagine most women in this generation are out of luck having kids. Lesbianism has helped, but I want both a husband and a child, so my other self suggested coming with you two to a world where whatever it is hasn't happened."
"My place isn't very big," the second Anya said. "But it's easily big enough for two of me since we have the same tastes and habits."
"Makes sense," Xander agreed. "Are you going to claim to be twin sisters or something?"
"That would be the simplest way to explain things," both Anya's agreed.
The Anya on the bed got up and began dressing. "I am so lucky you two came along. You cannot believe how much I was spending on batteries. I mean fish is a nice side dish, but not as a whole meal."
Xander chuckled and shook his head as he started getting dressed himself. "Remember, mum's the word on the dimensional jump device."
"What's the problem?" Buffy asked Willow.
"Shhh!" the red haired girl shushed her and pointed to the open window.
Buffy froze as she heard Xander's voice, "Remember, … the word… jump…"
The two girls stared at each other wide eyed before they both started climbing up the trellis, but by the time they got to the window the bedroom door was closing. Buffy gave Willow a hand and they followed the sound of footsteps reaching to basement just in time to see Xander leap into a vortex.
"Oh my god," Willow said, but before the two could decide what to do, the vortex closed.
"What was that?" Buffy asked.
"I don't know," Willow said, "but that was Xander, right? I'm not crazy?" she begged.
Buffy wrapped her arms around Willow and kissed her. "No, hon, that was Xander, I saw him too."
The two wandered back upstairs.
"Definitely him, he never makes his bed," Willow joked.
Buffy picked up a condom wrapper from the floor. "He used condoms," she said thoughtfully. "Lubed not spermicidal."
Willow looked in the wastepaper basket. "And he tied them in a knot so they wouldn't make a mess…"
"There's enough sperm in here to knock up hundreds of women," Buffy said excitedly.
"I- we could have children," Willow said. "Xander's children."
"How long are they good for?" Buffy asked anxiously, not sure if she could get pregnant at this point in her cycle.
"About a day, but we can have the hospital put some on ice and they'll keep forever."
"It'd be considered a town resource," Buffy warned.
"Yeah, but we get guaranteed rights to at least one child apiece."
"Yeah, let's do it," Buffy said.
Faith stared wide eyed as Anya fell out of a swirling hole in the air followed by a second Anya who landed crotch first on the face of her other self.
"Why do I always land that way?" Anya said climbing off her other self, just in time for Xander to knock them all down again.
"Next time you're going first," the first Anya said.
"You landing on me is not nearly as much fun," the other agreed.
"We have a nice scent," the first one told the second one, pleased.
"What just happened?" Faith asked.
"Jumped to a parallel world and back," Xander explained.
"And kidnapped their Anya?"
"All their men died off about six months ago," he said. "She volunteered to come."
"I can see that," Faith agreed.
"So what brings you by," Anya asked while Xander unloaded his backpack.
"I…uh… the Mayor wants me to get rid of a guy and I wanted to talk to Xander."
"We can send him to where I just came from," the second Anya said with a smile. "They need men."
"Really?" Faith asked perking up.
"Sure," Xander agreed. "He won't be able to come back on his own, you won't have to kill anyone, and we don't have to hide a body. Sounds like a winning deal to me. If he has family we can send them too. Unless he's gay I think he'll enjoy his new life."
"Faith my dear, you have outdone yourself," the Mayor said proudly. "A signed resignation letter, empty bank accounts, and no body?"
"I had to ask a friend for help," she admitted. "And he pointed out that a body attracts attention, and that would have the opposite effect of what you wanted, so we vanished him."
"Excellent job and very intuitive, I should have been more specific in what I wanted done and why, but that was my fault not yours. I have another job for you, but that's about a week away, still I wanted to give you a heads up."
"Yeah?" Faith asked basking under his approval.
"I have attained a rare poison that works on vampires to poison Angel with."
"I could dust him," Faith suggested.
"The poison won't kill him, it'll just make him… unresponsive. I want Buffy distracted. Well that and I just don't approve of him dating someone so young. At his age he should know better."
"Not a problem Boss, I'll be sure to keep an eye on him so I can poison him later."
"That's my girl," the Mayor beamed. "So have fun with your friends, I'll see you later."
"So how'd it go?" Xander asked, as Faith came down the stairs.
"Went great. Next job in a week, I gotta poison Angel."
"Slip it in one of his blood bags? He's gotta go through two a week on average," Xander suggested instantly, as he'd spent a lot of time thinking about how to poison the vamp.
"Probably, but it'd be simpler to knock him out and force feed him," Faith said. "What're you three doing?"
"Looking for a world where some kind of disaster wiped out all the people," Anya replied.
"Money," the Anya's chorused.
"The girls have convinced me that money will make our lives easier, so we find a world with no people and we can empty a bank or jewelry store," Xander explained.
"What did you invent a jump device for?" Faith asked.
"Life sucked pretty badly, so I was going to find a world where it didn't."
"Life sucked?" Faith asked surprised, she thought he'd been pretty happy as one of Buffy's clique.
"I like hanging with my friends and saving lives and I lost em both along with my girl, because something happened between me and Willow that blindsided us both. So, I figured I'd find a better world."
"What about now?" Faith said plopping herself down on his lap.
Xander chuckled. "Now I have a slayer in my lap and two witches, I've traded up. You guys don't push me away or try and neuter me to make yourselves feel better."
"And shortly, we plan to add wealth to your life," one of the Anya's said. "Money solves all sorts of problems."
"It can buy a lot of fun," Faith agreed.
"Here's one," Anya said turning up the volume on the TV.
"The zombie mobs have wiped out an estimated seventy five percent of the population in most urban areas and as their numbers grow we have to ask ourselves, is this the end of the human race?" the announcer asked.
"Avoid places that use the term infected," Xander said. "We really don't want to carry anything back with us that's going to cause the same problem here."
"Good point," Anya agreed.
"A neutron bomb was dropped in the heart of LA during the war and the effects were felt as far away as San Francisco as all animal and plant life started dying," the announcer said.
"What do you think?" Anya asked.
"Looks like it's worth a visit," Xander agreed.
"A Geiger counter was dropped using one of the newly developed Predator drones, directly on ground zero several hours ago and showed radiation levels barely elevated over the normal background radiation levels found in all major urban industrial centers."
"Feels kinda ghoulish," Faith said, "but it's not like they need it anymore."
"It is ghoulish," Xander admitted, "we are playing scavenger like vultures on a corpse, but we didn't cause the problem and we aren't making it worse. When we have some decent money we can always make up for it by dropping some supplies to a Sunnydale that needs them. Kinda help balance the karma a little."
"I'd like that," Faith agreed.
"Rob the dead now to aid their ailing counterparts later," Anya said.
"Sounds like a plan," the other agreed.
"OK," Xander said programming the signals frequency into his gauntlet, "let's jump."
Faith hopped off Xander's lap as he climbed to his feet and triggered the wormhole.
"You first," Anya said.
Xander leapt through and tumbled to the ground at the feet of… himself? He got a brief glimpse of a version of himself in fashion that hadn't been in style since the fifties, armed with a crowbar and a crew cut, standing in front of a Willow in similarly out of date fashion before he found his face meeting Anya's blue polka dotted panties once more.
"I told you so," Anya's voice rang out before she was landed on by a second Anya and Xander heard his other self say something in… German?
"No spreche da Deutsch," Xander tried. "I don't suppose you speak English?"
"Where do you come from?" Willow asked in German accented English.
Faith helped Xander to his feet as the wormhole closed behind them. "We come from Sunnydale, just not this one."
Willow and Native Xander talked back and forth in high speed German for a minute.
"Is there a way we could go there?" Willow asked hopefully.
"Sure, why?" Anya asked curiously.
"I assume from your accent, Germany did not take over the United States as it did here," Willow replied. "Here and now we are hiding because evidence has come to light that our backgrounds are of inferior genetic stock."
"Translation?" Faith asked.
"The Nazi's won here and dislike Jews and Gypsies," Xander summed up. "We need to leave now."
"If they're looking for you why hide here?" Faith asked.
"Xander suggested slipping behind the searchers as they are unlikely to backtrack anytime soon and it would give us time to plan," Willow explained.
The sound of glass breaking came from the house above them.
Native Xander said something in German.
Willow paled. "We have to go now, Xander has rigged the house so they would not get me alive."
Xander turned and opened a portal. "Move people!"
The Anya's jumped through followed by Faith, as cursing in German came from upstairs. Xander waved Willow and Native Xander forward diving in after them, a little surprised that they weren't followed by a massive explosion. There was a groan from the pile of bodies under him and he quickly hopped off and helped everyone up. The basement was old and dusty, like it hadn't been cleaned in decades and only the light coming from the open door upstairs kept them from being completely in the dark.
"Let's go up and see where we are," Xander suggested climbing the stairs.
Upstairs looked like the sixties never left and much like downstairs it was covered in dust and left to rot. Fresh air blew through the broken front window where a tree branch had broken through it, letting in the wind and rain.
Xander examined his gauntlet. "Charge is a little low, but this is the world we were aiming for. I don't know why it dropped us on the other world first."
Faith looked out the broken window. "I see weeds and birds, but it doesn't look like anyone has been here in decades."
"No one has," Xander replied as he opened the front door, wincing at the screech the rusty hinges made.
Despite what they expected, Sunnydale looked abandoned rather than dead, although there were a lot of graves in people's yards, as they walked it became obvious that the bomb hadn't killed everyone instantly, only weakened and sickened them, giving the population time to put their affairs in order before they died.
No bodies or bits of bodies after all this time were lying out. Cars were parked in driveways not abandoned in the streets. Power lines and a few poles were down, but that appeared to be storm damage as there was not even a hint of vandalism in the neighborhood they walked through. Weeds flourished anywhere there was a hint of dirt, pushing up through cracks in the pavement as well as covering what were well manicured lawns in decades past. If the town was a person you'd guess she went peacefully in her sleep rather than being violently murdered by an unthinkable weapon of war.
Crew cut Xander asked Willow something in German and Willow translated for the group, "What happened here?"
"A neutron bomb was dropped on LA," one of the Anya's explained. "The radiation slowly killed everyone that lived here and from the looks of things no one has been here since, so I'm guessing the majority of humanity was cut down by neutron bombs so population pressure hasn't forced people to move here yet."
"I'm surprised they were so… tidy," Faith said.
"Yeah, that's fairly creepy," Xander agreed. "Insects, birds and weeds have made a big comeback though and it looks like the trees didn't die."
"It's peaceful," Willow said. "No people means no war."
Xander snorted. "No war we notice. Survival of the fittest is going on all around us. Everything fights to survive, it's human arrogance that causes us to ignore it and pretend otherwise."
"Enough moping," one of the Anya's said. "This place was hit during the sixties and we are here to collect gold and jewelry before returning home and living a comfortable life as well as helping less fortunate versions of ourselves, so let's get to it."
"Jewelry stores and coin shops," Xander suggested. "I'd avoid paper bills as they'd be considered counterfeits."
"Be fun to use for monopoly money though," Faith said making Xander chuckle.
"I also would like to hit a comic book shop," Xander said. "There are some back issue's I'd like to pick up."
"No one said we couldn't make multiple trips here," Anya pointed out.
"I do have the coordinates in memory," Xander agreed.
"Speaking of geekness," Faith said. "Why did we stop at German Xander's world?"
"Probably a loose connection sending an interrupt signal," Xander said with a shrug. "I'll take it apart and triple check everything when we get home."
"You need a backup," Faith said.
Xander nodded. "Yeah, but the parts alone are a couple of hundred dollars, so I haven't made one yet."
"You should build one into a vehicle," Anya said. "That way we could travel comfortably."
"Landmasses don't always line up," Xander said. "A ship would be better; the sea is always at sea level."
"Except when climate change alters the sea level or a large storm hits," Willow translated for crew cut Xander. "However air is always air so a dirigible would be even better."
"Flying objects are usually tracked a lot more closely by the government than floating ones," Xander said. "But I do like the idea of having a traveling base, maybe if I come up with a better way of checking before we jump."
"Boats are more cost efficient per square foot," Anya said thoughtfully.
"The rocking motion makes me sleep like a baby too," Xander said.
"Jewelry store," Anya pointed out as they rounded a corner and came to downtown.
"And a pawn shop," Xander said.
"Avoid grocery stores and places with food," Faith said. "I doubt even Twinkies are good after being irradiated and left out for thirty years."
"We'll check the bank and the leather goods store," Willow said after discussing things with her Xander.
"The leather store?" Faith asked.
"Leather bags should still be usable where most others will have fallen to mold and decay," Willow explained.
"Good point," Anya said. "We'll join you there before hitting the jewelry store."
"I'm betting the pawn shop will have something that suits me," Xander said while he and Faith peeled off and headed for it.
"Ancient electronics and maybe some sports memorabilia," Faith added.
"Doors locked," Xander said as he tried the knob and it wouldn't budge.
"Allow me," Faith said as Xander moved back. Reaching forward she gripped the knob tightly and it snapped off in her hand. "Cheap piece of crap," she muttered. Drawing back her arm she nailed the lock plate with a palm thrust sending her arm through the door.
"Next time I'll bring a crowbar," Xander promised as she pulled the door open.
"Musty," Faith said her nose wrinkling in distaste.
"That, my dear, is the smell of money," Xander said in his best Thurston Howell imitation, making Faith laugh as they poked around the darkened interior.
"Baseball cards, jewelry and a decent switchblade," she said cheerfully as she checked out a glass case.
"Old buttons, some aluminum tokens and coins," Xander announced. "Look for something we can dump these displays in and we're good."
"Golf bags too big," Faith muttered squinting and wishing the power worked.
"A bowling ball bag would work," Xander said heading for the register.
"Found a leather bag, empty and looks like an old doctor's bag," Faith said.
"That'll work," Xander said fiddling with the register. "We'll come back here with flashlights and some proper bags to carry the loot next time."
"I'll put the cards in something so they don't get damaged."
"Sounds good," Xander agreed.
Jessica froze as the vortex opened in the basement and Xander and his friends fell out of it.
As the group untangled themselves Xander spotted his mother. "Um… I can explain this, really I can."
German Xander stood up and helped Willow to her feet, upon seeing the local version of his mother he said "Mama" and hugged her tightly, tears running down his face. Shortly the two were speaking German and she was comforting him as he cried.
"My parents were away helping the underground when they came for us, your parents sacrificed their lives to buy us time to escape," Willow explained.
"I didn't know my mom spoke German," Xander said, the enormity of what he'd just rescued an analogue of himself and Willow from hitting him all at once.
Jessica waved for Willow to join them. "Xander, finish the laundry for me please and remember not to wash the colors in hot water."
"I won't," Xander replied as Jessica took the two upstairs.
"Does anything phase your mom?" Faith asked.
"Not for long," he replied. "I better start converting this into a bedroom, because I doubt she'll let my doppelganger escape."
"We should buy a houseboat," Anya said. "That would give us plenty of room and we could anchor off the coast to avoid property taxes."
"With all the gold and jewels we should be set," Faith agreed. "Want me to see about a berth at the marina?"
Xander added detergent and started the washer. "We need to find a boat first."
"I'll see what we can find," Anya said picking up a leather bag and giving him a kiss. "But first I have to see a man about a way to move all this."
"What I said," the other Anya said getting a bag and giving him a kiss before they both left.
"You keep things interesting," Faith said shaking her head. "Well I gotta jet. I'll ask the boss about boats.
"Ok, see you later Faith."
Typing by: The Last Primarch!