"I'll get it," Buffy volunteered while the others finished clearing the table.
"Buffy?" Cordelia asked in disbelief as she saw the changes she'd been through.
"Still me," Buffy told her, "I got some work done."
"A cup size and a foot in height?" Cordelia asked dryly.
"Magic was involved," Buffy told her, not wanting to go into detail as she wasn't really sure what nanos were herself.
"Oh," Cordelia said relieved. "I just ran into Xander with a duplicate of me at the Bronze."
"That would be Cordite," Buffy said, realizing why Cordelia was distressed.
"No, it was a person," Cordelia said, wondering what explosives had to do with anything.
"Her name is Cordite," Buffy explained, "it's kinda a pun because she loves guns or something."
"And the reason she looked like me?" Cordelia demanded.
"Willow accidentally opened a hole into an alternate reality and a half dozen people came through, Cordite is a Cordelia Chase who lived a different life," Buffy explained, stepping back to allow the upset girl to enter as this really wasn't a conversation to have on the doorstep.
"Who all came through?" Cordelia asked as she entered.
"Willow, Amy, Janna, Cordelia, Marcie, and another me," Buffy listed off.
"That's… that's strange even for here," Cordelia said in shock.
"Yeah, usually it's always bad things," Buffy agreed.
"So, do we have to help them find their way home?" Cordelia asked.
"Their world is worse than here," Buffy said. "They like it here, they're safe, they aren't second class citizens, and…"
"And?" Cordelia asked, wondering what Buffy was having a hard time spitting out.
"And Xander didn't die saving them and the nursery in the hospital," she admitted.
"He died?" Cordelia demanded, horrified.
"Yeah," Buffy agreed. "My other self told him her slayer dream and he went and did it anyway, because of course he would."
"Cordite?" Marcie asked before she saw who Buffy was talking to. "Oh, you must be Cordelia."
"And you must be a catgirl?" Cordelia asked. "Those colors suit you," she couldn't help but notice.
"Thanks," Marcie said. "I'm a Cheshire catgirl."
"Meaning you can turn invisible at will," Cordelia guessed. "I'm kinda seeing a pattern here, though I didn't notice my other self being a cat girl."
Joyce and Beth came out of the kitchen, having finished cleaning up.
"And you're not a catgirl either," Cordelia said.
"No, that's just Marcie," Beth said. "I'm guessing you're Cordelia."
"I am," Cordelia agreed. "How is Marcie a catgirl? Our Marcie wasn't a catgirl, just homicidal."
"I guess it's my turn to explain things," Beth said.
"You're going to want to sit down," Buffy told Cordelia.
"Dad's happy I'm alive and is going to pick me up in the morning," Amy Madison announced as she and her pokegirl self entered the office.
"I'm glad it worked out for you," Willow said with a smile. "Amy, did you want to visit with your family. We aren't going to be going out on any missions anytime soon, so you have time."
"Do you think he'd mind?" Amy asked her human self.
"I'll ask when he gets here, but I doubt he'll mind," Amy Madison assured her.
"You can discuss anything you want with your family, but avoid official attention and don't let anyone learn about our technology," Willow ordered.
"Aye Mon Capitan!" the witch pokegirl said with a crisp salute and a wide smile.
"What do you have planned?" Willow asked suspiciously.
"Basic protection spells on vehicles and property with health medals for Amy and dad, plus I got a beefy medal from McDonalds that dad should like," she explained.
"What does a beefy medal do, and why would dad like it?" Amy Madison asked.
"And why would McDonalds have one?" Red added.
"McDonalds and all fast food chains really, give out minor medals with their meal deals," Willow explained. "The Beefy medal turns body fat to muscle and increases your penis size by half an inch in length and diameter," she listed off.
"It's minor enough that no one should notice, and it'll really improve dad's quality of life, considering how low tech this world is," the pokegirl witch explained.
"I'm surprised you haven't requested a hero medal for Amy," Willow admitted, "but everything else seems fine."
"I can do that?" Amy asked hopefully, grabbing her human self's hand excitedly.
"While we won't be handing them out willy nilly, Xander has collected more than enough to use on close family," Willow assured her. "I've already got a hero medal ear marked for her if she wants one."
"Then I would two hundred percent request one," Amy said eagerly before turning to her human self. "If you want one of course."
"I'd love one," Amy Madison said, bouncing on her heels in excitement.
Willow grinned, thinking Amy Madison and her pokegirl self were never more alike than at the moment, before digging out the massive folder that contained Xander's collection of hero medals. "While I'm finding the right one, tell me about the love spell, we still have to come up with a fitting offering to Aphrodite to make up for it."
"I didn't call on Aphrodite, I called on Artemis," Amy Madison replied. "This is the Hellmouth and Artemis is much more likely to reply than Aphrodite."
"Artemis is much more likely to reply favorably to women, she's not as fond of men," Willow pointed out.
"Is that why the spell went wrong?" Red asked with a frown, still a bit upset with what had happened back then.
"Probably, but he was blackmailing me into it," Amy Madison pointed out with a shrug.
"So, we need to make an offering to Aphrodite and Artemis," Willow said as she found what she was looking for and slid the coin out of its pouch.
"Artemis would gladly accept vampires being hunted and staked in her name," Amy pointed out.
"Consecrating the stakes we use would be perfect," Red agreed.
"And we can just have a couple of orgies in Aphrodite's name, win-win," Willow said cheerfully as she passed the hero medal to Amy Madison. "Just press it to your skin and it'll activate."
Amy Madison put it on the back of her left hand and pushed on it with her thumb causing it to melt like mercury and sink into her skin, lines of silver metal flickering across her body as they made changes.
The changes weren't as extreme as the other girls had gone through as Amy Madison gained only an inch in height and half a cup size, but her curves seemed to make up for it as her genie outfit was now stretched tight across her body.
"Yes!" Amy Madison cheered as she bounced excitedly drawing Oz and Red's eyes almost against their will.
"I'd almost feel sorry for you if not for those shoes," Harmony told the vampire that was stalking towards them, as they'd crossed the parking lot.
"What's wrong with my shoes?!" the undead woman demanded.
The sounds of extreme violence being unleashed caused them all to turn and Cordite could be seen beating a massive vampire, flinging him around as if he were an inflatable dummy and damaging several nearby cars.
Harmony smiled at how happy her new best friend looked, before turning back to answer the woman's question. "Six inch heels, open toed, platforms with straps?"
The vampire looked down at her shoes and frowned.
Harmony turned to Xander. "Please? It's a mercy killing, she had to be like a soccer mom trying to pretend to still fit in dressed like that."
"Hey!" the vampire complained.
Xander darted forward and slammed a stake in her chest while she was distracted, causing her to dust, leaving him standing there with what looked like a leaking plastic bag hanging off his stake. Xander flicked it off onto the pavement and they both stared at it for a second.
"Breast implant?" Harmony guessed.
"I guess so," Xander replied with a shrug. "With being so close to LA I'm surprised we haven't run across that sort of thing before."
"Don't they usually dust?" Harmony guessed.
"Good point," he agreed, "everything else dusts so they'd normally dust too. Not sure why that one didn't, but then occasionally some random item doesn't dust with the vamp, we've never figured out why."
"Huh, weird," Harmony said.
"I know," Xander agreed. "Occasionally we get a piece of jewelry, but most of the time it's a single piece of clothing or some knickknack in their pocket."
"If they dropped wallets it would be nice," Harmony said, "like a video game where you get money for killing the enemy."
"I have yet to see one drop a wallet," Xander said, "though the occasional purse survives."
"Because they dropped it to fight?" Harmony guessed.
"Mostly," he agreed, "sometimes they are hit so hard they drop them. The number of female vamps that carry bricks in their purses to use as weapons is kinda high for some reason."
"Regular guys can be grabby, vampire guys are probably way worse," Harmony said, "plus it's a quiet way to get food when they don't feel like flirting."
"That makes a disturbing amount of sense," Xander said. "I'll pass it along to Giles so he can write it down."
"Rib through the heart again," Cordite complained, but didn't put much effort into it as she was feeling pretty good. "I've got to stop doing that."
"You could always rip out the ribs near the heart," Xander suggested. "The look on their face alone would be worth it."
"Too messy," Cordite said, "but maybe if I'm making a point to the locals."
Xander nodded. "Let's head home and not get some sleep."
"Not get... '' Harmony's voice trailed off and she grinned. "I'll drive you!"
"We're staying at the CRD factory," Xander told her as they climbed in her car.
"Does it even have beds?" Harmony asked as she reversed out of the parking space without looking at twenty miles an hour.
"Some fold out couches, but we brought our own," Cordite casually replied as Harmony spun the car around, narrowly missing a light pole.
Xander, having been unfortunate enough to have been in the car with Buffy for Driver's Ed, closed his eyes and began praying in Sumerian.
"You're a lot better driver than my Harmony was," Cordite told Harmony as she pulled around a cop car that was moving too slow.
"I've had lessons from my cousin Dominic," Harmony said proudly. "He said the most important part of driving is not to scratch up your car, so he made me drive an absolute wreck of a vehicle through a bunch of courses until he was sure I was a safe driver." She downshifted and drifted around a corner, ignoring the red light, and the cop car that had just turned on its flashing lights.
"How do you deal with the police?" Cordite asked with a toothy grin.
"Deal with the police?" Harmony asked confused. "Why would I need to deal with the police? Oops, missed the turn." The blonde pulled a textbook bootlegger's turn and shot back the way they'd just come from, passing the police car going in the opposite direction.
"Why indeed," Cordite said, watching the police car squeal to a stop in the rear-view mirror, before seeming to give up as they shut off their flashers and slowly drove away.
The car screeched to a stop in front of the CRD plant. "Xander, could you get the gate please?"
Xander opened his eyes, shocked to find he was not only alive, but at their destination completely unharmed. "Sure," he said numbly before getting out of the car.
"You didn't drive like this to the coffee shop," Cordite pointed out as Xander opened the gate.
"My knees were still feeling a little weak," Harmony admitted, "so I drove like an old lady. Remember, safety first!"
"Of course," Cordite agreed as Harmony calmly pulled into the parking spot next to a familiar looking beat-up van.
Xander was just about getting his heartbeat back to normal when a red Chrysler cirrus just missed running him down as it pulled to a halt less than a foot from him, and Beth, Marcie, and Cordelia got out.
"You!" Cordelia growled on seeing him.
"Cordelia," Xander replied with a tired sigh.
"How dare you!" his ex yelled at him furiously.
"What?" he asked, wondering what she was mad about now. Maybe seeing him happy just pissed her off.
"You complete imbecile!" Cordelia yelled smacking him in the shoulder. "You aren't allowed to die!"
"What?" he repeated, confused.
"You heard me, Dork! You aren't allowed to run off and get yourself killed, I don't care how many people you saved!" she retorted.
"Oh," Xander said, realizing Beth and Marcie must have told her what happened to their Xander.
"Don't you 'oh' me," Cordelia snarled. "I swear to god if you run off and die doing something stupid I'll kill you!"
Xander decided to ignore the obvious contradictions in what she was saying. "Why do you care?" he asked.
"Why do I care?" Cordelia demanded, shocked he would even ask that.
"You've made it pretty obvious lately that me dying would improve the world and your life in particular," he snapped at her. "Hell, you actually did manage to kill me, remember the whole wish thing?"
"You can't die because I'm not through making you miserable!" Cordelia yelled, before jumping back in her car and screeching off.
"I like her," Cordite said in the sudden silence caused by Cordelia's departure.
Typing by: fyrewolf5
TN: Such a fun story, glad to see it picked back up, hopefully more will be coming soon-ish.