Journey of a Hero
Old into New
"OW!" Xander felt the small object hit his head and reached up to rub the top of his skull. He looked toward the sky looking for where the object had fallen from. Nothing. He looked down when he noticed a green glow and lifted the ring from the ground.
"What the hell?" He asked himself while he looked at the glowing green ring.
"I have to go. By the way my name is Kyle Rayner. If you need help or just someone to talk to about this," Kyle forms a card with his ring and hands it to Xander, "Go here. Talk to Guy Gardner. Good luck kid." Xander watches as Kyle flies off into the darkness a green streak in the sky behind him.
You are really leaving?" Giles asked the young man who stood infront of him. Xander nodded and looked at Giles as he sat a piece of paper on the desk.
"Yeah. Giles I have a favor I need you to do for me." Giles looked at Xander with a small sad smile.
"All of us think that we're not good enough kid. Hell even I think that. If you don't think that chances are your going to die, and take a lot of innocent people with you." Guy continued with conviction. The kid needed a speech, needed to have some confidence. Just not to much. Xander only nodded at the man's words.
Xander stopped in mid air as he noticed the young man trying to catch him. As the young man came closer Xander recognized him but his face didn't show shock or surprise.
"Your not Kyle?" Superboy asked more than stated. Xander chuckled and nodded his head.
"Your right. I'm not." Xander stuck out his right hand and shook with Superboy.
Kyle looked down for a second and took a deep breath.
"I need the ring back." Xander looked at him and swallowed a lump in his throat.
"What?" His voice sounded nothing like normal. No fun and games.. No life. Everyone there felt that something changed in that instant.
I'm on my way." Before Giles could say anything Xander had put the phone back to it's cradle and ran from the room toward the BatCave. As he jumped down the flights of stairs the Bat clan looked at him. Xander landed directly in front of the Bat and thought of the words to say.
"I have to leave." Batman merely tilted his head slightly. Xander continued.
"My friends are in trouble. More than they can handle alone." Xander stood waiting for Batman's answer......
Xander stood ridged waiting in anticipation for Batman's answer. He almost made everyone think it would matter.
"Your not ready." Batman answered in his deep growling voice, only this time it held a slightly caring tone.
"I'm not going to leave my friends when they need me the most." Xander said through gritted teeth taking the Dark Knights answer as an insult. Batman slipped the cowl off his face and looked at Xander.
"Your good kid. And there's no doubt in my mind that you would do the best you could to help your friends. But if the situation is as bad as you say then your not going to be helping them Xander. Your going to be fighting for them. Your not ready for that."
"It doesn't matter." Xander said and turned to leave the cave. He was stopped by the voice of Dick Greyson.
"What?", Xander asked in curiosity as he turned and looked at the masked face of Nightwing.
"I said," Nightwing began with a small smile.," I'll go. I'll head to Sunnydale and help your friends out." Xander looked from Nightwing to Batman who only nodded his head slightly. Xander sighed and looked at the floor.
"I feel like I'm running out on them." Xander said as he moved back into the group of Batman, Robin, and Nightwing.
"Your just not ready Xander," Nightwing said in a gentle tone as he put a hand on the young mans shoulder.," In a few months or a year maybe, right now your just not up to it. I on the other hand am. I'll take care of your friends. Count on me." Xander looked at the masked eyes and didn't doubt his new friend for a second.
"I will. Thank you."
"Your part of the family now little bro." Nightwing said with a larger smile, one that Xander soon mimicked.
"Yeah," Robin agreed with a smile," Now I have a bro that will talk about things other than cute red heads."
"She is cute isn't she." Nightwing said with a sight as both Xander and Robin chuckled. Batman half smiled under his cowl but covered quickly.
"Nightwing will leave for Sunnydale immediately. Robin and myself will begin to train Xander in the morning." Batman said as he began to remove his suit. Xander sighed again.
"Tomorrow night," Bruce Wayne stated as he hung the cowl in it's place," You two will go back to the club."
Xander hit the padded mat hard. He thought he was in decent shape, thought he was a decent fighter. But he had been wrong. He winced as he pushed himself up and looked at Robin who was smirking slightly.
"Okay," Xander stated as he fell into a fighting stance.," Now I'm ready." Robin looked at him and shifted into a different stance.
"If you say so."
Robin moved forward faster than Xander thought a normal human could move. Almost faster than he had seen Buffy move. But this time Xander was ready. He fainted to his left and quickly moved right as Robin extended his right leg. Xander gripped the ankle and used all his strength to through the young hero toward the padded walls. Robin twisted in mid-air and pushed off the wall with both his legs landed a right cross on Xander's chin. Xander went down and Robin landed on his left leg massaging his right ankle.
"Not bad." The Boy Wonder said as he tested out his ankle. Finding it only slightly sprained he focused on Xander as the young man stood up with a sigh and a frown.
"Hey," Robin stated with a friendly tone, "Your good, better than I was when I first came here. But, me, I've been trained by the best, Batman, Nightwing, Lady Shiva, and a lot more." Xander nodded to Robins' statement.
"I'll get it." Xander said with determination. A determination Robin knew came from his need to help his friends.
"No doubts from me." Robin answered and chuckled When Xander fell into a fighting stance, then the Boy Wonder fell into one of his own.
Xander stared at the masked figure of Batman as Nightwing smiled at the back of the young mans head.
"You know the territory better than we do," Batman stated with a strict voice," What do you think Nightwings cover should be?"
"I'd like him to stay close to my friends," Xander started," Even during the day. Maybe I could call in Giles and tell him a few things, just tell him I'm sending a friend." Xander quickly added the last part at the glare from the dark knight. Then the young man continued.
"Giles knows I was a Green Lantern, so when I tell him a friend he's going to automatically think superhero.", Xander says to receive nods from the batclan.
"So I have Giles tell the others that Nightwing... Um... Michael Shrum. Is from the watchers council and is there to help with the Angelus matter."
"Michael Shrum?" Nightwing asked in a whiney voice. Xander smirked at the masked crime fighter before speaking.
"I hate the name Spike."
"Your cold man." Nightwing said with a deadpan face that made Xander chuckle slightly. Even The Bat smirked.
"Besides, I don't think Tim likes the name Breaks."
"Damn right I don't." The boy wonder said as he glared at Nightwing, who only smiled back unrepentant.
"Fine, I'm Michael Shrum. Happy?"
"Getting there." Xander answered and turned back to Batman.
"Does that sound okay to you?" Xander asked the cowled face which held a small glint in its eyes.
"Sounds fine. Set it up."
"Thanks." Xander said and turned walking toward the nearest land line to call Giles. His friends were going to get help. They were going to get one of the best.
Xander and Tim walked into the club with steady and easy steps that exuded confidence. The people who saw them last night moved out of there way quickly but coolly the crowd parting like the red sea, leaving an open walkway straight to the stairs that led to Mr. Fears' office. As the young men reached the top stairs a large man stepped in there path.
"What do you want?" The man asked not recognizing the young men from there talk with Mr. Fear the night before.
"Fear wanted to see us. He offered us a job." Xander said as he looked directly into the big mans eyes. The large man looked at the two kids and snorted.
"Bullshit. Get outta here kids." Xander turned and looked at Tim, the two locked eyes and Tim nodded.
"Go ahead Breaky boy." Xander said with a smile. Tim smiled a false smile that spoke of mischief and lashed out with a right foot hitting the large mans right knee knocking the man off balance. The young hero quickly lashed out with his left hand shoving his thumb into the throat of the big man just under the jaw line. The big man froze in shock and pain.
"We coulda done this the easy way," Tim stated as he fell into the character of Breaks. He stepped forward causing the big man to step back, he quickly led them into Fears office making the large man reach behind himself and open the door. As they stepped through Tim released the big man and pushed him aside Xander walked in just behind them a large smile on his face. Fears' eyes were on the two young men who had just walked right through his security with a smile on there faces. Despite himself he started to like the kids.
"So," Fear started as he motioned his security guard to leave," You thought about my offer I take it." Xander stepped forward and fell into one of the chairs infront of Fears' desk lazily. Breaks sat in the other with much the same casual attitude.
"We have," Xander started and began to look serious," We're interested. Very interested, but we have to know what we're getting into. I'm not going to be a patsy to anybody."
"My boy is right," Tim stated as he leaned forward," If we're in this we're in all the way, there's none of that 'You Don't Need To Know' bull."
"I totally agree," Fear said with a smile that spoke volumes. It was that smile that told both Xander and Tim why he was called Fear., "But, you will have to earn my trust before I just spill everything. You'll start out small time, little deliveries, things like that. Then, if it works out, well, we'll renegotiate." Xander turned and looked at Tim. They nodded simultaneously.
"Fine," Xander said then sighed for show," We're in, for now."
"Good," Fear said and leaned back in his chair," Very good." The two young heroes were in the world. Now there only problems were stopping the crime spree, and getting out alive.
Xander and Tim walked away from the nightclub with the same air of confidence they had walked into the club with. Arrogance exuded from there shadowed forms. That was until Xander jarred to a stop suddenly and watched as a man and woman left the club and walked toward a darkened ally.
"What's up?" Tim asked as he followed Xander's eyes and watched as the two people faded into darkness.
"She's in trouble," Xander said as he moved toward the alley, Tim not a step behind him.
"We need to suit up." Tim said then cursed silently as he noticed he didn't have his Robin suit with him.
"No time," Xander said as he reached the mouth of the alley and took a quick look around the corner of the building. Ten feet in the man was kissing the woman.
"So lets take the guy down." Tim said quietly only to look confused when Xander shook his head.
"It's not a guy, well, not a human guy anyway.", Xander said and again looked around the corner. Things were heating up and Xander knew it wouldn't be long before the vampire made his move.
"What?" Tim asked in curiosity.
"Vampire," Xander said in a cold voice," I'm completely serious." Tim nodded his head thinking of the things he had seen.
"Alright. We can still take him."
"Yeah, But I don't have any wood on me," Xander said then sighed as he heard the woman fighting her attacker. "Fuck it." He said as he turned the corner and walked quickly and confidently toward the two forms. The vampire was just about to sink it's fangs into her neck when Xander blindsided it with a right cross that made the vampire stumble back and lose his hold on the shocked and frightened woman. Tim wasn't a step behind as the young Robin launched himself into the air and extended both legs hitting the vampire in the face with as much momentum as possible. As the vamp went down Xander moved in. The young man slammed his foot into the vampires throat hoping that the vamp was dumb enough to still rely on human instinct. He was.
"Run." Xander said to the woman and Robin as he began to back away from the vampire who was finally realizing he didn't need to breath. Tim grabbed the young woman and pulled her away from the forms of Xander and the dark haired vampire that glared at there retreating backs with hatred.
"I'm going to rip your throat out." The vampire said as he turned his attention back to Xander.
"I've heard that before," Xander said with a serious and deadly tone that made the vampire slightly cautious. "And I'll hear it again, right after I take care of you." The vampire growled and charged bringing it's hands up as it tried to wrap it's cold fingers around Xanders' throat. The young man pivoted on his left foot turning sideways and catching the vampire between the eyes with an elbow. As the vamp went down Xander lashed out with a kick that caused the ribs of the vampire to crack and crumble. The vampire screamed in agony and Xander turned looking for a piece of wood.
"Xander!" Tims' voice carried from the mouth of the alley causing Xander to turn just in time to avoid the slice of the knife the vampire had pulled from his boot. The knife came so close Xander felt the air move past his nose. But that didn't stop Xander from grabbing the over extended arm and sliding under it slamming his right elbow into the vampires sternum he felt the bones the vamps chest crack as he used the momentum from his elbow strike to send his right fist under the undead mans jaw. The vampire was thrown off his feet by the force, the knife in his hand flying from the scene. As the vampire lay clutching his injured chest Tim ran up to Xander and handed him a broken piece of a crate.
"Next alley over." Tim said as Xander looked at the piece of wood curiously. Nodding he moved over the vampire and slammed the makeshift stake home. As the vamp burst into dust Xander stood and threw the piece of wood away from him.
"How's the girl?"
"Back in the club prolly calling the police." Tim said as Xander and he began to walk from the alley.
"No," Xander said and shook his head," Fear won't call the police. He'll pay the girl off and if she gives him a good description he'll ask us about it next time we're here."
"We'll just tell him we didn't want cops nosing around so we took care of it." Tim said to which Xander nodded and smiled.
"Sounds like a plan," Xander said as they took a right at the mouth of the alley and began to walk away from the club toward the parking garage down the block that housed the Redbird.
"If you don't mind me asking," Robin started with hesitation.," How did you know that was a vampire?"
"You really wanna know?" Xander asked with a smile. Robin nodded again hesitantly.
"He was dressed different from everyone in the club, his leather jacket had high collars and were turned up. Like my friend Buffy always said, she didn't spot vampires with her unnatural senses, it was just her fashion sense."
"That's... wrong somehow." Robin said as he snorted with laughter.
"Tell me about it." Xander said with a smile. The two young men continued the trek down the dark sidewalk.
Bat Cave. Morning.
Xander and Tim watched as Batman stood in front of them. The man stood at full height and sighed as he took off his cowl to reveal the features of Bruce Wayne.
"Everything went as planned?" The Dark Knight asked with no emotion in his voice. The two young men nodded there heads in unison.
"Except, well, we got in a fight with a vampire." Tim said with a careless shrug. Bruce frowned slightly.
"Vampires back in Gotham. Great."
"I'd like to think it was a freak accident," Xander said before sighing," But, it's not. Night before last when I fought in the club, it was a vampire."
"Why didn't you tell me?" Batman growls out angrily. Xander looks at him with a hardened glare before answering.
"The fact that my friends are in costant danger is a little more important to me than one damn vampire. I forgot." Xander said in a low tone that spoke of regret, but not of being wrong. Bruce sighed and closed his eyes.
"I understand that," The Dark Knight said then looked at Xander.," But you have to focused on this case, I can't have you out there with Tim if your not a hundred percent." Xander nods and uses his right hand to rub his forehead.
"I know, and I'm doing my best. What's best for the case." Xander said with meaningful words that did what he expected. The Dark Knight nodded and turned away. Satisfied. Xander turned and looked at Tim with a large grin.
"Ready to start training again?"
Young Justice HQ
Impulse stood in open mouthed shock as the purple clad woman simply appeared in front of himself and Suberboy. He was even more shocked when she and the young super hero beside him smiled at one another.
"Aura." Superboy said the smile on his face still growing. Aura nodded to him with a smirk.
"SB. How ya been kid?"
"Not bad.", Kon answered and shook his head," Why are you here?" He asked in his ever tactfull way.
"You told me to call you when I restarted the rave." Aura said with a smile as her motherbox appeared in her hands. Superboy's smile grew even wider.
"Awesome, Hey I got a friend I wanna introduce you to." Superboy said then laughed when Aura looked at Impulse.
"Not him," Superboy continued.," We need to go to Gotham. He'll find us there."
"Remember," Aura said with a smile," Meta's only." The smile fell from Superboys face.
"Aw," The boy whined with a puppy dog look on his face," Come on Aura, one exception?"
"Fine." Aura said with a small smile.
"Great!," The teen of Steel yelled and pumped his fist into the air before picking up Aura and flying to the entrance of the Justice Cave.
"Watch your hands!!!!"
The two heroes, one a young man and another a woman who seemed to be in her twenties sat on the largest skyscraper in Gotham.
"Batman?!!" Aura asked in a shocked voice. Superboy looked at her in shock before shaking his head no very fast. Before he could answer another figure sailed in landing beside him.
"Ahh.." Kon-El said and jumped slightly causing Aura and Xander to laugh.
"Don't do that!" Kon said trying to regain his composure. The young clone looked at his friend before cracking a smile.
"Cool facepaint," Kon said to Xander before turning to Aura and continueing," Told ya he'd be the life of the party."
"That you did." Aura answered Superboy with a small smile.
"I'm always right, the sooner you learn the better off you'll be." Superboy said with a superior smirk.
"Right, like the time on New Genesis. You were so scared it was funny."
"Was not?" Superboy said childishly.
"Was to." Aura answered tauntingly.
"Um.. Guys, what party?"
"SHUT UP!!!" Xander yelled in a growl that silenced both the meta humans.
"Okay," Xander said as they both looked at him.," What party?"
"The Galatic Rave." Superboy said with a smile. Xander thought back in his memory and remembered SBs' stories of his time with the Ravers.
"I can't tonight Kon," Crow said with a strong voice, "Got work to do."
"I knew the Batman thing would bite me in the ass." Superboy said with a sigh and shake of his head.
"Look," Aura said with a smile," Why don't I give him a hand stamp and he can join whenever he wants?" Superboy looked at Xander with a questioning glance.
"Sounds good to me." Crow said with what could almost pass for a smile. Aura smiled and touched his hand imprinting it with the stamp connected to her mother box.
"Awesome, now me." Superboy said with a giant smile. Aura sighed and acted as if disapointed.
"If I must."
"HEY!!" Superboy said indigently as Aura chuckled and touched his hand placing the stamp there.
"Just touch the stamp when you want to join us." Aura said and teleported away.
"Thanks Kon." Crow said with a real smile to which Superboy smiled back.
"No Prob bro, couldn't let off a little steam without a few friends around."
"I gotta get back to work. Let's meet at the Rave tomorrow night, eightish."
"You got it bro, later." As Superboy flew into the sky Crow smiled and jumped from the sky scraper firing his jumpline at the last second and swinging toward the next block, where he would meet Tim for there patrol.
"Nightwing filled you in on his first night?" Robin asked as both he and Crow swung through the Gotham skies.
"Yeah, all he said was it was pretty hectic." Crow said knowing that there was more to the story they weren't telling him.
"Yeah, from what Batman says he's already had a run in with Angelus. Nightwing says he can take him, Batmans not so sure." Robin said telling his friend all that he knew, he wasn't going to hold back.
"I have faith in Nightwing, and my old friends, they'll be okay." Xander said confidently, Robin nodded in agreement.
"I know." The young Boy Wonder said in answer.
"I still wish I could help, if it gets any worse Batman is just going to have to live without me."
"I know." Robin said sincerly while in his head he thought the same thing of himself. 'If Xander's gonna go, I'm going to. And so is the rest of Young Justice.'
As the two young men walked into Fatal Terrain for the third time everyone stepped out of there way. Even the three vampire guards Xander spotted right away moved out of there way with non-hostile motions. This was good, it showed at least partial trust. Both Xander and Tim, AKA Spike and Breaks nodded to them showing that they meant them no harm. At the moment.
"This is strange," Tim said lowly," I've never been trusted this quickly before.
"Yeah, keep your guard up," Xander said under his breath," This is most likely a ploy." Tim nodded his agreement and the two continued there walk across the club. As they sat at the bar two mugs were set in front of them. Both young men looked at the beer and then turned in there stools to survey the club. Most of the young women around the club looked at the two younger boys in curiousity. A few, that had seen them there last two times here, looked at them with unhindered lust. Both young men kept there bearings, not allowing anyone to see how uncomfortable the situation was making them.
"Heya sexy." A sultry voice said from Tim's right side, the young man turned quickly and stared straight into the ample chest of an older woman. He slowly looked from her breast to her face and smiled a half smile that almost conveyed his feelings. Nutrality.
"You must be talkin to me." Tim said using a slight Brooklyn accent in his Breaks persona.
"Yeah right," Xander snorted from his left," Like that lovely thing would want a midget like you."
"Bite me." Breaks retorted with a small smile. Then looked back at the woman.
"Sorry girly, It's all business tonight, some other time maybe." Tim said with a smirk.
"Oh," The woman answered looking downcast as she handed him a napkin with her number on it.," Call me somtime, I'm Candy."
"I'm sure you are." Tim said the lazy smile still on his face as he tucked the napkin in his jeans pocket and watched as the woman walked away. He turned and noticed the glint in Xander's eyes. He knew he would be teased mercilessly later. He almost sighed.
"Boss wants to see both of you." The guard from the night before said as he eyed the two with mixed feelings, rage and respect.
"We'll be up in a minute." Xander said turning around and drinking from his beer for the look. The guard growled but turned and walked back toward the stairs that led to Mr. Fears' office.
"YOu ready for this?" Tim whispered in Xander's ear as both young men began to walk toward the stairs.
"Of course. You?"
"Without a doubt."
"Good." Xander said and the two continued to walk. Not knowing that there first job was scheduled for the next night.
"What do you want Vampire?" The figure asked Angelus as he stood with his mask shining.
"I think the question is.. How much do you want?"
"I'm not cheap."
"With your reputation you shouldn't be." Angel said with a serious tone. The sick twisted smile that always graced his features was temporarily gone.
"You the Master of this town?" The assassin asked with a hint of dealing in his voice.
"I'll do it, but you owe me a favor." The mercenary said in his deep voice.
"Anything, just find the Bat, I know the Harris kid sent Nightwing here. Find the kid, kill him. And bring me his head."
"What about Nightwing?"
"I'll handle that little bug." Angelus said with his smile coming back to his pale features.
"Angelus, you now have Deathstroke, in your employ."
"I knew we could reach an agreement." Angel said with a loud chuckle.
"That was to easy." Tim AKA Breaks AKA Robin, said as both he and Xander walked from the Museum of Fine Art.
"No kidding. Kinda scary how easy." Xander. AKA Spike, AKA Crow, said as he smiled and tapped the bag that held a nearly priceless statue.
"Batman will stop it from leaving the country. All we have to do is deliver it to Fear and hit the rooftops for patrol." Tim said with a smile.
"Race ya!" Xander yelled as he took off with a two leg length head start. Tim was right behind him.
Superboy Flew over Metropolis with a smile on his face. Dubblex told him that Superman wanted to see him. Wanted to talk to him. That could mean any number of bad things.
"Superboy." A voice said above the flying super teen that made the young man twist quickly in mid air.
"Don't do that!"
"Sorry." Superman said with a humorous smile.," I heard about what you did with the rogue Green Lantern while I was off world. That was brave."
"Stupid more like it." Superboy mumbled to himself.
"That to." Superman said with an even bigger smile.," Still, it was the right thing to do, took guts."
"I didn't do anything, it was Xan... GL that beat him. Not me."
"You helped. If you hadn't been on the scene there wouldn't be a Manhattan Island anymore." Superman said with a serious voice. Superboy didn't say anything as he looked down at the bustling city below them.
"Wanna get something to eat?" Superman asked out of the blue. Superboy looked at Superman and smiled.
"Let's get you a disguise and get some Pizza."
Xander sat in the large Library of Wayne Manor. His eyes never leaving sight of his left hand as it moved up and down the fret board of a very nice dark blue acoustic guitar he had found in the room.
"Your pretty good kid." A voice said from the doorway causing Xander to look up quickly.
"Don't do that!"
"Sorry." Bruce Wayne said with an almost smile as he moved into the room and sat across from his newest charge.
"No prob. How's it going Mr. Wayne?" Xander asked as he casually plucked a string on the guitar.
"Call me Bruce." Wayne said as he smiled at Xander.," I'm fine, just wondering how your holding up."
"I've been doing this for almost two years Bruce, I can handle it." Xander said with a small smile.
"Usually time is what wears a person down." Bruce Wayne said speaking from experience.
"I'm fine Bruce. Really.," Xander started then sighed and began to talk. "The physical pain of the job is nothing new. I've gotten used to the pain, it's been with me my entire life." Xander sighed again before continuing on a sensitive subject.
"Bruce. I know you lost your parents. And In a way I did as well, I'm adopted. Never knew my real parents. But you were a lucky guy for having Alfred. My adopted parents were... well, there no prize. What I'm saying is that in some way, be it right or wrong. I feel that I have to prove myself worthy of knowing my real parents. To me there up there close to god...." Xander trailed off and plucked a guitar string.
"Bruce, you do this for justice, and to a lesser extent vengeance. Me, I do it for Justice, I do it because I know it's the right thing, but, the main thing that drives me Bruce, is my own standards of who I should be. I should be the guy on the frontlines. I should be the one to fall fighting, not my loved ones. It might be a selfish reason, but it keeps me going. And that's the one thing you don't have to worry about Bruce, As long my friends are in danger, NOTHING will keep me down."
"I know that Xander," Bruce said with a serious expression.," Known it since the moment I saw you fighting the Green Lantern." Xander smiled at what he took as a compliment. Bruce smiled back and continued talking. "There's a fundraise in two weeks at the Museum of Fine Art," A small smile touched both men's faces.," I'd like you to accompany me as my... apprentice of sorts."
"Cool. Wait, I have to wear a tux don't I?"
"Nah, We'll find you something a little more... trendy. Play me something." Bruce Wayne leaned back in his comfortable leather chair as Xander smiled and began to strum.
Warrior felt like a million bucks. He and Kyle Rayner, The last Green Lantern, flew through space at what had to be light speed. Creating holes in the very fabric of space only to come out near the very planet they'd been looking for. Gacieric. A planet of warriors, noble warriors. Much like the nearly extinct Vuldarian race that Guy Gardner himself belonged to. Supposedly on this planet there was an amulet, that when worn would give extremely powerful powers to it's bearer. That was there prize on this mission. And it was also the gift that would keep giving. It was going to Xander Harris. There friend.
Two days Later
"So the big bad bat let you have the weekend off?" Superboy asked as he and Crow sat ate a slice of pizza each while sitting on the top of Wayne Tech.
"Yep. So... Ya wanna check out that Intergalactic Rave thingy?"
"Yeah, man I'm not kidding it is totally awesome. You'll have the time of your life."
"So I'm pretty much going to be dead by morning huh?" Xander asked with a small smirk.
"Man, I gotcha back. If someone starts somethin with ya I'll help ya finish it."
"Alright. So I just push on the hand stamp and..."
"Yep," Superboy said with a smile as he pushed on his stamp and vanished.
"Okay." Xander said a little weary as he pushed on his stamp and vanished in a sea of lights. He was going to the rave.
"Holy...." Xander let his comment fade into silence as he took in the loud music and the many people and aliens dancing on the huge asteroid.
"Told you it was awesome." Superboy said as he slapped Crow on the back.
"Yeah, you did." Crow said entirely to caught up in the situation to come up with a sarcastic comment.
"AURORA!!" Superboy yelled as he took flight leaving Xander in the middle of the crowd.
"Hey cutie," A blue skinned alien said as she floated over to Xander and began to dance with him.," What's with the Goth look?"
"Fits my bosses demeanor. I'm Crow."
"Adrena. From Quans sector." The blue skinned beauty said with a smile.
"Quans huh? So you can read minds huh?" Crow asked all the while picturing the alien naked. Adrena blushed causing Crow to laugh lightly.
"Make you a deal. We dance, no reading my mind."
"You drive a hard bargain." Adrena said as she moved closer to Xander and the two began to dance.
"That's the name of the game beautiful."
"Already movin on my old turf." Superboy said with a smile while shaking his head.
"He's certainly a charmer." Aura said as they watched Crow dance with Adrena., "Much smoother than you ever were."
"HEY! That's not true, I can be smooth."
"Prove it. I bet you can't get any girl here." Aurora said with a big bright smile. Superboy looked at her with a scowl and took off for the dance floor.
"Finally, got rid of the little pest." Aurora said with a friendly smile.
"So your from earth?" Adrena asked as the two began to dance to a slow song.
"Yeah, from Gotham City actually." Crow stated with a smile. He was about to say something else when he heard Superboy scream his name.
"Damn." Crow gritted out before shooting a line to snag the stage lights, he then went swinging in the direction of the fighting. Crow swung around both legs extended in front of him as he saw the three aliens advancing on Superboy who was in a bring it on pose. Crow slammed into the biggest one with all the momentum he could manage and flipped forward as the alien went down hard. Xander landed beside Superboy in a crouch facing the two aliens left.
"What the hell did you do?!" Crow yelled at Superboy not taking his eyes off the two green scaled aliens in front of him.
"Nothin, I was just over there talking to the pretty yellow lady when..."
"Okay, I've heard enough. I should just let you get pounded." Crow said with a sigh in his voice.
"I could take these guys no prob. Just thought you might like a workout, ya know, stay fit and all." Superboy said with a smirk on his face. Crow chuckled and let a smirk touch his lips.
"Fine, you take the big one."
"Why do I??... Never mind." Superboy said while he shook his head and moved his feet slightly so he was facing the biggest alien.
"Ready?" Crow asked low and slow.
"YEAH!!!!" Superboy yelled as he rocketed off the ground and toward his adversary. Crow smiled and laughed as he moved forward his hand going for his utility belt. He threw the bat-arange with a laugh and watched as the alien blocked it with a forearm. As the big alien screamed in pain Xander fell short and slid feet first into the big aliens knees. As the alien fell Xander rolled away and kipped up to his feet with a smirk and yell.
"OH YEAH!!" He said with a laugh. His opponent just groaned in pain. Xander looked over just in time to see Superboy body slam his opponent with a laugh and fly into the air yelling out his victory.
"I told you!!!" Superboy yelled down to Crow while laughing.
"Yeah!" Crow said with a genuine fun filled smile. This was going to be awesome.
"Have a good night?" Bruce Wayne asked as Xander dragged himself in the front door.
"Yeah," Xander said as he gritted his teeth in slight pain.," Just hurt my shoulder a little."
"Have Alfred look at it for you. So what happened?"
"Kon wouldn't stop hitting on unavailable women. Finally I just found him one and got to enjoy myself." Xander had a large smile on his face as he slid into a seat opposite Bruce. The Dining table between them. Bruce snorted lightly.
"Sound's like the kid."
"Am I still going to museum with you next week?" Xander ask as he sips a cup of coffee that Alfred had put on the table for Bruce.
"Yes, unless of course Alfred catches you drinking my coffee." Bruce says with a smirk which causes Xander to quickly put the coffee mug on the table and slide it back to Bruce.
"Our little secret?" Xander ask while looking around the room.
"One more free night Xander. What do you have planned?" Batman asked as if he didn't already know.
"Nightwing's swinging by to pick me up. I'm going home till Monday."
"Be careful." Bruce said with a no emotion tone. Xander smiled and saluted the Batman.
"Yes Sir!" Xander could tell by the look in Bruce's' eyes that he was in for one hell of a training session when he returned.
"How does it feel to be going home?" Dick Grayson asked Xander as they sat in the luxurious corporate jet of Wayne Tech.
"I'm scared as hell."
"That's pretty funny being that your not afraid of hell." Dick said with a smile.
"Oh, I'm afraid of it, just used to it by now." Xander said with a smile., "How are they?"
"Well," Dick AKA Nightwing started., "Buffy's being pretty bitchy, I think it's because she's just got so much on her right now. I kinda let something slip though, I told her a friend of her's asked me to watch over them."
"In your Nightwing persona?"
"Yeah. It's all I could think of at the time. And I felt she deserved some explanation." Dick said with an embarrassed look on his face.
"It's cool, they probably won't even think it's me." Xander said with confidence. Dick didn't think so.
"Giles is good, just trying to keep everyone in line. He's a hell of a guy."
"That he is." Xander said with a smile.
"Willow is doing great," Dick looked in thought for a second.," I'm actually thinking that IF we come out of this friends, Willow and I I mean, she'd be a great back up Oracle." Xander just nodded his agreement.
"Well, I guess we'll head straight for the library. School should be just about over by the time we hit Sunnyhell."
"Sounds like a plan." Dick agreed with a smile.
The halls of Sunnydale High were deserted as Dick and Xander made there way toward the library. The last classes of the day were just about over and the two wanted to be in the library to talk with Giles before the others arrived. As they walked through the doors of the library Xander yelled out in his ever sophisticated way.
"G-Man! I'm home!" A curse was heard as a book fell in the back of the stacks. Giles walked out from behind the book stacks rubbing his head and glaring at Xander. The glare turned into a smile rather quickly though.
"Xander," Giles stated as he walked up to the young man and gave him a quick hug.," Good to see you." Xander gave him a manlier version of the same hug back.
"Good to see you to Giles, Dick filled me in on the way here."
"Very good." Giles said still smiling but he removed his glasses to wipe them and Xander saw the bags under his eyes.
"Haven't been sleeping." Xander stated as he pushed the watcher toward the library table and made him sit down. ,"That's not good, not with all the stuff going on."
"I just...," Giles started but couldn't think of anything to say. Xander was right.
"Dick and I will handle this as soon as we can." Xander said as he looked at Dick with pleading eyes.
"I'll call him and tell him your staying the week." Dick said as he turned and walked into the stacks pulling his cell phone in the process.
"Thanks." Xander said as he sat down opposite Giles.
"So I hear you and Miss. Calendar are all.... sexin.." Xander said barely getting the last word out without laughing. Giles' head shot up fast and he looked like a deer caught in the headlights of a Big Rig.
"We do no such thing!!" Then the man blushed knowing that he had over done the outrage. Xander smiled widely. But he kept the information he had found out about Jenna Calderdash to himself. Now wasn't the time.
"It's cool Giles, I'm just glad I learned to turn my overactive imagination off." Xander said with a straight face that made Giles glare at the young man.
"Stuff it." The man said in a clipped voice. Xander laughed out loud.
"Your learning insults. I'm so proud." Before Giles could even growl in annoyance the doors flew open and Buffy, Willow, and Oz walked in. Willow was babbling a mile a minute but suddenly stopped causing her friend and her boyfriend to turn and look at her curiously. Then follow her shocked stare to the table.
"XANDER!" Willow yelled with a smile and ran toward him. Xander barely had a chance to stand before Willow wrapped her arms around his neck.
"Hey Wills. Doing good?" All he heard as answer was a lot of babble. It kind of made him sad that he didn't understand Willow babble anymore.
"She said yes." Oz stated as he must have noticed the confusion on Xander's face. Xander smiles at him gratefully., "Good to see you man." Oz said in his tone, a slight smile on his face.
"Same here man." I say and look toward Buffy who just stands there staring at him like he's a ghost from her past. He is in a way.
"Hey Buff, how ya been?" I ask forcing my Xander grin up. It doesn't come as easy as it used to but it looks sufficient.
"Alright I guess." She says and gets a slight smile on her face. It's not the smile that worries Xander, it's the glint in her eyes. She's going to want to talk to him alone.
"I've got to patrol tonight Xan," She states with a smile., "Wanna be my back up?" Xander knew he couldn't and wouldn't say no, no matter the cost.
"Sure, I'll be your patrol buddy."
One of the many cemetery's of Sunnydale.
The dynamic duo of Buffy and Xander walked through the darkness, between the rows of grave markers and under the trees that provided shad during the daylight hours.
"Start asking already." Xander said as he held a stake in his left hand and a pair of brass knuckles on his right.
"How do you know Superboy and Nightwing?"
"Right into the tough questions." Xander said with a laugh. Then he settled on telling a half truth.
"I was a Green Lantern." Xander said with no room for doubt. Buffy looked at him in shock, sure she suspected it but to actually hear it from Xander was a different story.
"I thought as much. What happened Xander? We haven't seen you on T.V lately." Buffy said and for a moment Xander's saddened. He knows he can't and won't tell her everything.
"They told me I wasn't good enough for the ring Buff. Kinda like everything in my life up to now. I wasn't good enough. But, I've gotten better, a lot better."
"Oh really?" A voice that made Buffy shiver said with a sarcastic tone. Angelus walked out of the darkness, the evil smile on his face. Xander stepped in front of Buffy on instinct. Angelus smiled at the simple movement.
"Wanna test me Deadboy?" Xander growled out as his face turned to a stone cold look of hatred. One that promised death.
"Who do you think you are? Buffy's White Knight? Taking over my old job?"
"It was never your job, It might have been Angel's for a time. Never yours." Xander said his voice void of all emotion but hatred.
"Finally," Angelus says with a smile as he tosses his hands in the air in a show of appreciation., "Someone recognizes that I'm not the brooding wonder."
"I'm not sure I could beat Angel, but you? I don't have to hold back with you." Xander said as he took a step toward the dark haired vampire.
"Ah ah." Angelus said as he waved his finger in the air toward Xander in a motion that said no. "I don't think Buffy here will let you stake me. After all, I am her love, and lover." Angelus said leering at Buffy using the time to try to make Xander even more angry., "After all, I was her first, I am her only." The smile was sick and twisted. A knot formed in the pit of Xander's stomach but his training with Batman and Robin allowed him to hide his anxiety.
"A year ago that would have made me run headlong and try and stake you. But I did something that you'll never be able to do after tonight Angel. I got over it." Xander said letting a smirk fall on his lips. He might not have the costume on but at that moment, he was Crow. Xander Harris was just the voice in the back of his mind keeping him sane. Angelus was thrown for a moment and he growled in anger.
"I'm going to rip your throat out Harris."
"Let's see you try bloodsucker." In mere seconds the two warriors had closed the gape between them. The fight had begun.
Buffy stood rooted to the ground as Xander slammed his right fist into Angelus' jaw. the brass knuckles ripped away the vampires flesh but the cuts seemed to stop bleeding before Xander's fist left the vampires skin. The young man jumped back quickly out of reach of Angelus' legs. And that was when he knew how to fight the vampire. It was the complete opposite of how he had been trained with Robin, he had to get in close. To keep the vampires strong legs out of the fight.
"You have improved, a few months ago and you wouldn't have laid a hand on me." Angelus said disgusted that this lesser man had laid a hand on his face.
"I get better.," Xander said with a becking motion of his hand., "Let's see if your as good as you think you are Angelus." Xander said the last part hoping to anger the vampire. Xander knew, that if anything, Angelus was better. The vampire came in quickly. His right leg leading the way. Xander just had time to fall backwards into a hand spring to miss the kick. Then while Angelus was slightly shocked by the movement Xander landed his back hand spring and used all the power in his legs to throw him toward the stunned vampire. The young man threw the most powerful right hook he could manage and the master Vampire went down. For a moment. Xander rolled with his own momentum and came up on his feet kicking out with a right leg and hammering Angelus in the face as the vampire began to stand tall. The vampire fell a step back but kept his footing. Xander didn't let that slow his progess down as he spun with the kick and landed a left heel to the side of the vampires jaw spinning Angelus around only to find Xander's own feet taken out from under him. As Xander went down he tried to roll, to fall the right way so he could breath. Only the ground under him wasn't level and the small of his back landed on a large rock. As the breath was forced out of him Angelus was on the young man with a vengence. Blow after blow rocked the young man's head back slamming it into the hard ground.
"NO!!!" The feminine growl echoed through the darkness as Buffy The Vampire Slayer flying tackled the master vampire and began to hammer blows on his 'TRUE' face. As Angelus took the pounding Xander finally inhaled a deep breath and rolled to his feet. Buffy screamed in agony as her ex-lover grabbed her blonde locks and pulled them with his vampiric strength nearly throwing the young woman off him. Xander ran toward the still downed vampire and slid baseball style into The Scourge Of Europes side. The vampire howled in pain but rolled with the blow coming to his feet at the same time as his young human challenger.
"Looks like Nightwing taught you a few new tricks." Angelus said with malace and anger in his normally mocking voice.
"I didn't teach him anything Angelus." A voice called out from the darkness and Nightwing jumped out of the shadows to land between Xander and the vampire. ,"Yet. Wanna be my assistant in this lesson?" The Vampire looked at his surroundings. A superhero, A slayer, and a young man who'd just met him blow for blow. The odds weren't in his favor.
"Another time.," Angelus said his grin forming on his face as he turned to look at the angry Buffy.," Ta ta lover." And like the mist he vanished. Nightwing turned and looked at Xander.
"You have gotten better." Buffy stood with her mouth open.
"..Then Nightwing showed up and Angelus ran like a little baby." Buffy said with the first real smile she'd worn in weeks. The rest of the table was in just as good of humor. Except suprisingly Xander. Willow noticed before anyone else.
"What's wrong Xander?"
"Angelus has something planned." Xander said his voice without any real emotion.
"What makes you think that Xander?" Buffy asked as she began to worry about her friend.
"He could have killed me Buff," Xander stated while looking her in the eyes.," He didn't. He has a reason. I just can't figure it out."
"He couldn't kill you Xander. You were fighting just as good as he was, if not better." Buffy said with a suprisingly gentle tone. Almost one of disbelief, almost one of respect.
"No, he took me down. I was on my back, all he had to do was stab me with the knife he carries in his left boot. But, he didn't. I think he wanted me as a.... hostage."
"For Buffy." Willow says with a knowing tone.
"No," Dick Grayson says as he sits down beside Xander.," For Nightwing."
"W..." Willow began to ask but was cut off by Xander.
"Yeah," Xander started while staring at everyone in the table individually.," Nightwing is an unknown, much more dangerous to him than Buffy. No offense." Xander said tossing one of his old smiles to the slayer who merely shrugged.
"Your right." Buffy said shocking nearly everyone in the room. Everyone except Xander. I knew she'd come around. The young man thought to himself his smile growing larger by the minute.
"What do you propose we do Xander?" Giles asked the young man who leaned back. Dick Grayson didn't voice his opinion. He wanted to see how much of a tactician Xander had become.
"I'm going out tonight. To the Bronze. Alone." Xander said with a small smile. Dick was about to voice his disagreement but Xander spoke before anyone could. "I want him to catch me. I'll use a tracking device of Nightwings. You can all follow the signal. That way we can find out where he's hiding and then. WE can take him down."
"No," Buffy said with an adamant tone.," It's to dangerous. To many things could go wrong."
"It's all we've got." Dick said with a low tone. He didn't like the plan any better than the Slayer. Only he knew that Xander could pull it off.
"Shut up! Your not even part of this conversation!" Buffy yelled in anger. Xander slightly snickered at the look of rage that formed on Dick's face. But the young Bat protege held his temper. For now.
"Buff, cut the guy some slack. He seems okay," Xander said then his smile widened.," In a I'm a wussy kinda way." The glare the young Crow recieved could have killed Superman. Would have made Batman proud. It only made Xander laugh.
The group watched from monitors a few buildings down from the alley behind the bronze. The mini camera's set up and down the alley at various angles ,courtesy of Oracle Inc., gave the scoobies a birds eye view of the action.
"This is boring." Dick Grayson said as he watched Xander walk out of the Bronze with his arm around what appeared to be a young woman.
"Is Xander picking up that girl?" Willow asked slightly appalled at the thought. Dick chuckled thinking the entire time that if she knew how smooth Xander could be she'd faint.
"Nah, it's a vamp." Buffy said with a dull tone. Although for a moment she thought the same thing, and had a rather confusing feeling about it. The groups eyes widened and they gasped at once as they saw the fifteen or more vampires coming in behind Xander. What they didn't know, was that Xander was aware of them even before the woman under his arm had become dust.
The scoobies watched the fight in utter amazement. Even Buffy and Dick couldn't believe how Xander was doing. Much better than either had ever seen him fight. It was like he knew Angel was watching him, and wanted to prove that he was worthy. Or better.
"How did he do that?" Willow asked in awe as Xander ran up a wall and flipped off it throwing a stake out of his left hand and dusting a vampire while using the stake in his right to catch the vampire that was chasing him through the back.
"...." Everyone was to stunned to answer the red heads question.
Xander was getting tired. He had dusted six vampires already and he was beginning to get a little sloppy. But no one but himself could tell that. He spun as a vampire on his right tried to hit him with a left cross. As he spun he squated down and threw the stake in his right hand at a vampire that was a few feet away. Dust. As he completed the spin he started to stand and triggered a button on the inside of his long sleeved jacket with his left hand. A stake fell out of his right sleeve and into his palm as he slammed his arm forward into the chest of the vampire that had tried to deck him just a second earlier. Dust. Seven down. Eight to go. He was done for. Xander fell forward as a vampire hit him with a shoulder rush in the back. The young hero rolled forward landing on his feet as the vampire fell on his face just a foot behind him. Xander turned and quickly put his back against the brick wall of the Bronze. He surveyed his opponents and knew that he was going to have to try something drastic. He knew that he couldn't win, not a chance in hell, but he wasn't going to go easy. With a deep breath, Xander did the craziest, most unexpected thing he could think of. He charged.
"Holy..." Buffy said as she watched Xander run toward the horde of vampires. Willow was in mute shock, Giles had a look of pure terror on his face. Oz looked like he was about to explode, and Dick Grayson, Dick laughed.
"He doesn't know he's going to win." Dick said with a laugh.
"He can't. There's no way he can take fifteen vamps." Buffy said as she looked at Dick like he was crazy.
"I didn't think so either, I was wrong. For once." Dick said as his smile grew.
"Won't that ruin the plan?" Willow finally asked. Dick just shrugged in answer.
Three left., Xander thought as he stood with his back to the mouth of the alley. He looked at the three frightened vampires and smiled a tired smile. Then a sharp pain hit him in the back of the head. And he went down. He was beaten.
"Damn." Dick Grayson said as he watched the figure walk into frame. He couldn't believe it.
"What?" Buffy asked her eyes still glued to the string. A worry filled tone in her voice as she watched the costumed man pick up Xander and turn away from the three remaining vampires.
"Deathstroke." Dick said with a trace of worry in his own voice.," Deathstroke, The Terminator."
"Wake up!" Xander heard Angelus scream as he also felt a hard kick hit his ribs. He rolled with the kick and stood unsteadily.
"I'm up Deadboy."
"Why didn't you just kill him?" Angelus asked a figure that was surrounded by shadows.
"I'm a man of some honor Angelus. I want the kid to fight me even. He did take out all your lackeys. And I haven't had a good challenge in a long time." Deathstroke the Terminator said as he moved into the light and looked at Xander through his masked eye. Xander snorted softly and smirked.
"If it isn't Strokehead...or somethin..." Xander smiled as he noticed the assassins body stiffen slightly in shock and anger. Even Angelus smiled at the joke.
"Maybe I want to kill the kid now." Angelus said with a smile on his face as he looked from Xander to Deathstroke.
"Fine. But I still want my money."
"You'll get your money." Angelus growled out and began to advance on Xander.
"Why the hell did you wake me up in the middle of the night Bird-boy? And why am I in some two bit shit town?" Roy Harper in his Arsenal persona asked as Nightwing molded out of the shadows in the alley behind the Bronze.
"A friend of mine, a partner really, was taken by Deathstroke in this alley earlier tonight."
"Deathstroke? Damn, I'll get on the horn to the other tita...."
"No, just you and me, and a few of Xander's friends. We can't have all the titans running around here. Could you imagine what Damage could do to this little town?" Nightwing smirked as Arsenal laughed involuntarily.
"Fine, you got it Bat-boy. Let's get this show on the road."
"Come on, we're meeting his friends at the High School."
Xander hit the ground hard but rolled backwards to his feet as Angelus moved in for a foot stomp. As the Master Vampires' foot hit the ground Xander fell forward into a hand stand and slammed both feet into Angelus' jaw causing the vamp to fly off his feet and land a few feet away on his back.
"That all you got Angelus?" Xander asked with a blood covered smile. Angelus kipped up to his feet and fell into a fighting stance. His first since the fight had begun.
"I'm going to rip your throat out Harris!"
"Heard that before captain hair gel." Xander said with a false amused voice. His eyes were cold, filled with a look that Deathstroke knew well. He was in this fight for the duration. Death, dismemberment. He'd go as far as his body would let him, then he'd go a little farther. Deathstrokes view of the kid went up a notch.," I can kick your ass all over this mansion."
"You seem to think that I'm going to fight fare." Angelus said just as the room began to fill with vampires. One of the thirty or more vamps quickly became dust.
"And you," Nightwing said as he and Arsenal jumped from a ledge on one of the higher windows," seem to think he doesn't have friends." Xander smiled as Nightwing landed between himself and Angelus.
"I'll take care of Angelus, make sure Buffy and the others can get in." Nightwing began to lead. Like always. Xander nodded his head and caught a stake Arsenal had thrown him without looking.
"You got it partner."
"Come on kid, let's put these things in a dust buster." Arsenal said to which Xander looked at him like he was stupid.
"Is that all you can come up with?"
"Shut up and fight." Arsenal said with a smile on his face.
"Yes sir." Xander said a serious look falling onto his normally smiling face. He saw Deathstroke from the corner of his eye and did the dumbest thing he could think of. He raised his head in a challenge. Deathstroke seems shocked at first. But only nodded his head in acceptance and began to work his way through the vampires between them. Dust settling behind him as he swung his sword with deadly accuracy. Xander just fought, and waited. Knowing that in seconds he was going to fight one of the deadliest people in the world. He was cursing himself for such a bold and stupid idea.
"We have to get inside!" Buffy yelled as she kicked the solid doors of the Mansion. They didn't budge.
"DAMNIT!" The slayer cursed causing all her friends including her mentor Giles to look at her in shock. She didn't seem to notice.
"Step aside." Giles said as he moved forward and pulled a lock pick kit from his jacket pocket.
"You know how to pick a lock?!" Buffy asked in astonishment as Willow looked just as shocked and Oz seemed to smile slightly.
"Misspent youth." Was all Giles said before he got to work.
Xander turned to face the assassin as Deathstroke cut through the last vampire between them.
"You talk about honor right? But you help people like Angelus. There's no honor in blood money."
"Never said I was the most honorable."
"Let's see how good you really are Merc." Xander said falling into a fighting stance. A soft snort was made by Deathstroke as he put his sword on his back beside his gun and fell into his own stance. As the assassin leapt forward Xander jumped straight in the air throwing his upper body forward into a flip he used both hand to quickly grasp the gun and sword on the assassins back pulling them smoothly from there sheaths. As he landed behind the stunned Deathstroke he kicked out with his left leg hitting the mercenary behind his right knee then the young hero threw an elbow into the back of the assassins head. Xander leapt away from the dazed assassin throwing the shotgun to Arsenal as he turned and pulled the sword up in a defensive stance.
"You underestimated me." Xander said with a smirk as Deathstroke smiled under his mask.
"Don't worry. I won't do that again."
"You won't have the chance." Xander said with no smile and no emotion. The young man moved forward quickly and swung the sword in a wide arc. Deathstroke stepped forward and slammed a right forearm into Xander's left elbow causing the youth to drop the sword in pain. As the sword hit the floor with a metallic clang Deathstroke brought an elbow up and into the bridge of Xander's nose causing the blood vessels in his nasal passage to burst. The young mans' eyes began to water and his vision blurred. All he could see was the orange and blue mask of the assassin. And he could faintly hear the figure laughing.
"GET AWAY FROM HIM!!!" A female voice screamed just as a foot hit the side of Deathstrokes head knocking the mercenary ten feet through the air only for the figure to slide another five when it hit the hard floor of the mansion.
"Xander are you okay?" Buffy asked as she helped the young hero to his feet.
"Sure Buff. Thanks for the save." Xander said and wiped his eyes clearing them. Buffy saw his eyes widen as he pushed her out of the way and took the right that Deathstroke had thrown at the back of Buffy's head. As Xander turned with the blow he raised his right leg and landed a side kick on the unprotected stomach of Deathstroke the Terminator. The mercenary leaned forward only to get a left knee into his nose making it bleed under his mask. Xander raised his right and about to put all the strength he had into a right cross when Deathstroke lashed out with a hard left jab that hit Xander just below the throat. The young man fell back a step and began coughing. Buffy lashed out with a roundhouse kick that caught the mercenary by surprise hitting the man in the side of the head.
"Don't forget about me." The slayer said with a growl as she jumped into the air and snapped kick at the assassin head. Deathstroke ducked the kick and lashed out with a right foot that caught the slayer in her lower left leg knocking the girl to the ground. Deathstroke moved in and went for a stomp that was deflected by Xander's left leg as he kicked from the side and threw a right hook that caught the mercenary in the jaw. As Deathstroke fell back Xander jumped in the air and landed a side kick just under the assassins jaw. Deathstroke flew backward and landed on his back a few feet away.
Nightwing fell back with as Angelus landed a side kick on the heroes ribs, cracking at least one. As Angelus moved forward with a right cross Nightwing ducked left and slammed a ridge hand into the vampires 'real' face. As Angelus stumbled back Nightwing jumped forward slamming a right foot into the master vamps face. Just as the young hero was going to spin into a side kick he was tackled by a newby. Nightwing rolled with the tackle putting his legs between the vampire and himself and threw the vampire behind him as he rolled to his feet only to receive a vicious kick to the stomach by Angelus. The fight wasn't near over.
"What have we here?" Arsenal said as he cornered a wheel chair bound William the Bloody.
"Come on mate, I'm in a chair here. I'm not dangerous."
"Not now, but you will be someday."
"Well, that's true. I guess you got me there. But hey, I'm a vampire, evil ya know." Spike said with a careless shrug. Arsenal looked at him confused only to fly into a wall as Drusilla hit the hero from behind. The gun the man had in his hands clattered to floor and was kicked further away by Drusilla.
"Miss Edith didn't say anything about you. Just about the young friend of the slayer.. Who are you?"
"Lady, I don't know who the hell Miss Edith is but I think I'm offended she didn't mention me. I mean. All women love me." Arsenal said with a big smile as he stood. Drusilla seemed puzzled at first before she looked at him.
"I don't like you."
"Feeling's pretty mutual there toots." Roy said as he quickly reached behind him and pulled a compact crossbow. His aim was true as he pulled the trigger and his smiled as the bolt was shot toward the vampires heart.
"Fuck me..." He said in shock as Drusilla plucked the crossbow bolt from the air inches away from her unmoving chest.
"That's not nice." The female master vamp said even as her face changed and she moved forward.
"She was kinda hot till now." Arsenal said to himself as he went on the defensive.
Giles, Oz, and Willow stood in a circle back to back dusting any demon dumb enough to come within range. Giles' rapier moved through the air with deadly accuracy. Oz and Willow's crossbow bolts hit the unbeating hearts of there enemies with every shot. The vampires numbers were beginning to fall.
Drusilla moved with a deadly efficiency that kept Roy Harper on the defensive. Finally just as Drusilla landed both feet on the ground after a jump spin kick Arsenal found his opening. He fell sideways scissor kicking the female vamps legs and making Drusilla fall forward. Just as the vampires face hit the concrete floor Arsenal slammed his stake into her back causing her to scream in pain just before she burst into dust. Arsenal kipped up to his feet and threw his stake without looking. He turned when he didn't hear a scream in pain. The stake was sticking out of the back of an empty wheel chair.
Xander chanced a look in Nightwing's direction as he dodge a right hook thrown by Deathstroke. The Bludhaven hero was circled by five vamps and Angelus and holding his own.
"Buff. Go help Nightwing!" Xander yelled as he ducked under a left hook and spun out of the way of a right snap kick.
"GO!" Xander screamed as he landed a right into Deathstrokes stomach. As Buffy turned Xander was caught off guard by an uppercut that sent the young man reeling backwards.
"Without your partner your nothing to me."
"Maybe.," Xander said with a smile as he held up his hand. A pin swung on his middle finger.," Maybe not." Deathstroke looked down and quickly pulled at the grenade held on his belt. He threw it away from him only for it to explode mere feet in front of his face. The assassin flew backwards into a wall. He was out. Unfortunately, the blast had also caught Xander and thrown the young man backwards with brutal force. As the young man slid across the floor knocking over one of the few vampires still alive all he could think of was the pain.
Buffy stepped in front of Angelus as Nightwing began to dust the five vampires around him.
"He's mine Nightwing." She said with a sad but strong voice.
"You think you can do it lover?" Angelus asked with a cocky voice that made Buffy shake in anger.
"You tried to kill me, you tried to kill my friends. I won't let you hurt anyone else."
"Big words from such a little girl." Angelus said with his evil smirk. Buffy fell into a fighting stance. No more words were spoken as the two, slayer and vampire. Fought the fight that was destined since the beginning. Only one would walk away.
Arsenal slid to a stop by Xander's still form and began to check the young mans' injuries.
"Come on kid." The hero whispered to himself as he felt the young mans skull for any fractures. He found none. Xander groaned and woke as Arsenal tried to roll the kid over.
"Man, you had me worried for a minute there kid."
"I'm good, got a hard head.," Xander said as he sat up slowly. He looked around and saw Nightwing fighting the last of the vampires and the others watching Buffy's fight with Angelus.," What about Deathstroke?"
"He's gone. You did good kid. Didn't think anyone younger than me and Bird-boy over there could go toe to toe with Deathstroke."
"Thanks, help me up man. I gotta help Buff."
"Stay put kid. I'll take care of Angelus."
"NO!," Xander yelled with authority as he began to stand on his own. Arsenal rolled his eyes and helped the young man to his feet.," This is Buffy's fight. Stay out of it unless she gets hurt. She has to do this alone."
"You know your not gonna stay out of it kid." Arsenal pointed out with a smile.
"Well, it's mine and Buffy's fight."
"Your definatly one of the Bat kids." Arsenal said as Xander walked as quickly toward the fight as he could. He was the first one to notice that Angel had fallen beside Deathstrokes sword. He was the first one that began to run toward Buffy as Angel readied the swing. And he was the one that pushed Buffy out of the way as the sword cleaved through the air, and into his chest.
"NO!" Buffy screamed and reacted on instinct spinning and grabbing Angelus' wrist. She twisted the sword free and kept the spin going as she swung the sword. Angelus had a shocked look on his face just as the metal of the sword bit into his neck. Then, he was dust. The sword fell out of Buffy's hands just as the dust settled. She hit her knees beside Xander and cradles his head in her lap.
"Your gonna be okay Xander." She said while all the others nodded in agreement but still had the worried look in there eyes.
"Not, this time Buff......" Xander wheezed out with a soft smile on his blood covered face.
"No, we'll get you help. Please hang on." Willow said as she joined Buffy on her knees and held Xander's hand. Nightwing cut off his communicator as he had Oracle call and ambulance.
"To... late... Wills. Love ya.... all of you......" Xander closed his eyes and took a deep breath.
The world of Apocalypse. A world ravaged by war, it's flames burning so high and bright that they could be seen from the far reaches of space. A world, that though known was uncharted.
"Lord Darkseid. Preparations have been completed. We are ready to move." One of Darksieds many worshipers said as he pressed a few keys on a large computer.
"Very well. We shall make our move in two days earth time."
"Why then my lord?"
"It's going to be a very special anniversary. One that the Kryptonian is going to be noticing."
"What anniversary sir?" The minion asked carefully not wanting to anger Darkseid.
"The anniversary of Doomsday." Darkseid answered with a sinister laugh.
Sunnydale Memorial hospital was busy. Many people had been hurt in the last nights and the doctors were all on duty. The waiting room was filled with many friends and families from the injured. But the patient with the most support was Alexander Harris. His friends and family sat and stood in a far corner. Comforting one another. Buffy Anne Summers. Rupert Giles, Willow Rosenburg, Daniel Osborne. The scoobies were all present. Even Cordelia Chase had made a quick appearance. The rest of the people in the room were a surprise. Bruce Wayne, Dick Grayson, Timothy Drake, an older gentleman known as Alfred. More and more people began to file into the room. Karl Grummet (superboy), Cissie King Jones, Cassie Sandsmark, Bart Allen. The members of Young Justice had not forgotten Xander. There friend. Clark Kent was there. A hand on Bruce's shoulder and a restraining hand on Karl's as well.
"He'll be okay." Clark said with an authorities voice.
"I know." Bruce said with a low voice. The members that knew he was Batman just stood in shock. Though most didn't know this of the man.
"Just wait," Karl said with a smile.," He and I'll be scopin the babe scene before Friday." The group laughed at the thought and everyone had a quick reprieve from the weight on there shoulders.
"Remember the stories he told us when we went camping?" Cassie asked with a small smile.
"Ah, the skateboard incident." Cissie said with a growing smile.
"Yeah. That was just Xander. Through and through." Tim said a small smile on his own face.
"He saved my life." Buffy said with no emotion. Finally speaking after ten hours of silence. The group looked at her and smiled.
"Mine to." Cissie said.
"Yep." Cassie amended.
"Here to." Tim said raising his hand.
"Add me to the list." Karl (superboy) said with a smile as he adjusted his glasses.
"Metoo." Bart added talking very fast.
"I think he's saved just about everyone in the room in one way or another." Lois Kent said as she and Perry White walked into the room. Xander's Uncle Rory behind them.
"Lois?" Clark asked in confusion.
"The kid saved me from a few muggers in Suicide Slums a month or so ago. He's a hero." The female reporter said as she hugged Clark and then surprisingly Karl., "He'll pull through."
"Damn right." Perry said with a voice filled with emotion. He had just gotten to know his 'nephew' again. He couldn't stand the thought of losing him now.
"What happened to the kid!?" Guy Gardner yelled in question as he and Kyle Rayner walked into the hospital. Both looking a little beat up.
"What do you think happened?" Karl asked sarcastically.
"Okay. Who'd the kid get hurt savin?"
"Me." The Slayer said without looking up.
"You must be Buffy." Kyle said with a soft smile.
"Yeah." She said with a low voice. Giles pulled her into a hug as she began to cry again. The entire group looked down.
"I think... We might have something that can help him." Kyle said as Guy held up a small silver medallion on a steel necklace.
"What is that?" Bruce Wayne asked not sure if he liked what he was hearing.
"The amulet of Valace." Guy said with a smile. "I heard about it after Hal destroyed my ring. It's supposed to bring forth the full potential of it's bearer."
"I don't think..." Bruce started to say only to be interrupted by Dick.
"What have we got to lose Bruce? Honestly?"
"I..." Bruce couldn't think of anything to say so he relaxed and nodded his assent.
"Are you here for Mr. Harris?" A female Doctor asked as she looked at the very different group.
"Yes mam." Giles said standing. Both he and Bruce walked up to the Doctor. The others crowded around them.
"He's stable. If he makes it through the next forty-eight hours his chances will improve. I really can't tell you much more but that the kid is strong. If he wasn't in such good shape....." The doctor let the statement trail off into silence.
"So he'll be fine?" Bruce Wayne asked with a caring voice.
"He's not out of the woods yet. He's still on a respirator and he's got an irregular heart beat. But he is stable. I have to go now. Some other patients."
"We understand," Giles said with a sad smile and a sigh., "Thank you Dr. Reis."
"I'll do everything I can." Dr. Reis said as she turned and walked away. Bruce spun on his heels and looked at Guy and Kyle.
"Get in there and give him the medallion." He growled out in a very authoritive voice. Guy and Kyle's eyes widened immensely and they nodded there assent. As they walked out of the waiting room to get into ICU to see Xander Kyle whispered.
"That guys pretty scary for a billionaire playboy."
"No kiddin." Guy agreed with a nod of his head.
Xander stood in the white vastness. Nothing around him but blank space. He looked around himself. It was like the time he was blinded by looking directly into the Bat-Signal.
"So this is what it's like to be dead." He stated to himself as he chuckled sadly.
"You are not." A male voice started.
"Dead." A female voice finished. Xander spun on his heels and landed in a fighting stance across from two distinct beings.
"Who the hell are you?" He asked shaken that he was no longer alone.
"We are." The male started.
"Okay, stop finishing each others' sentences. It's freaky.," Xander said still in his fighting stance., "And what are the Oracles."
"We are, we are the beings that watch over this world for the Powers That Be."
"Like what? Guardian Angels?" Xander asked not sure if he should buy the explanation.
"In a way." The female said.
"Well aren't you doing a damn good job!" Xander said angrily., "My friends and I are down there doing the guarding. Your just watching us like we're a damn reality TV show."
"We are not allowed to directly interfere." The female said a sad tone in her voice and her face looking downcast.
"What? Prophecy? Destiny? It's all bull. I've broken prophecy, I've beat destiny, and I'm only HUMAN!"
"Enough!" The male Oracle said his face also covered in sadness.
"I...WE, have watched you for years, and as years past we wanted more and more to help you. But had we everything you know would be nothing. You would no longer be Crow, you would no longer be Xander Harris. If we would have stepped in at any time, your friends might not still be alive. Everything we do has a chance to change the fate of the world. Just like mortals our choices have to be thought over wisely."
"Then why am I here? Why are you telling me all this?" Xander asked finally beginning to calm down.
"We've watched you throw yourself to the dogs to many times Alexander." The female Oracles started, pain in her voice., "And we have to tell you that, we're proud of you. The entire world of The Powers is proud of you."
"Wh...What?" Xander asked in shocked disbelief.
"We are proud." The male Oracle said with a smile.," But, we are going to break a rule for once."
"What do you mean?" Xander asked not sure if this was going to be a good thing.
"There is a great evil coming. Something that can destroy not only earth, but the entire universe. Maybe, even us."
"Your kidding right?" Xander asked in complete shock.
"No Alexander. We are not." The male said with a smile on his face.
"Why are you telling me? I'm a nobody. Why not go to Superman? Someone with the power to help you." Xander asked quickly.
"You will see. You won't remember this when you awake. Only when you need this knowledge will it become clear." The female said slightly saddened by the statement.
"Goodbye Alexander. We will be watching you." The male said sadly and with a wave of his hand the two were gone. It was now, this exact moment. That the medallion was placed around Xander's neck. Then the white vastness... Turned to black.
The entire waiting room of Sunnydale watched the TV in shock as Doomsday and Darkseid tore through the JLA like they were nothing.
"I gotta go honey." Clark said urgently as he kissed Lois on the lips and moved to walk out the door. Kyle Rayner and Guy Gardner began to follow him. Karl took a few steps before a hand fell on his shoulder.
"You'll just be in the way kid."
"No. I won't. I'm not strong enough to beat either of them, but I can definetly help get the innocent people out of the way." The kid said low enough so only those around him heard. Bruce looked shocked for a moment but nodded and pulled his hand from the kids shoulder. The rest of Young Justice walked behind Kon-El as he left the waiting room. Tim looked at Bruce and nodded, then, he followed his friends.
"I thought I recognized them." Giles said with a smile.
"Yeah." Bruce said and turned his face to the TV.
"Your going to go aren't you." Giles stated rather than asked.
"Yeah." Bruce said and began to walk.
"Xander's going to hate not being with you." Giles said causing Bruce to stop for a second. The man looked back and smiled slightly his blue eyes sparkling.
Superman hit Doomsday with a hard right knocking the monster backwards a few feet only to have a left hook knock him to the ground. As Superman flew into the air he saw Green Lantern and Warrior fighting with Darkseid. And he saw the Titans and Young Justice helping the people get to safety. Doomsday jumped into the air grabbing Superman's ankle and tossing the hero into the pavement.
"Great." Xander said to himself as he looked at the darkness around him.
"Hello young one." A voice said that made Xander spin on his heels for the second time that.
"Who are you?" Xander asked falling into a fighting stance.... again.
"I'm Valace. The savior of Gacieric." The warrior in red said with pride. Xander looked more confused than anything.
"Start at the beginning."
"Very well," The being said with a sigh and a smile.," I was born Valace Gand on the planet Daxiam. As a young man I was recruited for a journey into the outreaches of space. All of the crew but myself were killed when Darkseid found us near his world of Apocalypse. I managed to escape and landed on the planet Gacieric. A planet of warriors. Under the yellow sun of Gacieric I began to develop many physical powers. My strength increased a hundred fold, beams could be shot from my eyes. I turned into one of the most powerful warriors on the planet." The Daxamite stopped his story to gauge Xander's reaction. Xander stood with an easy gate and nodded for the alien to go on.
"Darkseid sent many of his strongest warriors to conquer Gacieric, thinking that all the powerful beings on the planet would eventually rise up and overthrow his rule. Many of my friends, my new family, were slaughtered by the enemy and it took all of my strength and will to fight to a standstill with Kalibak the Cruel. Darkseids supposed son. I won, the enemy left the world and as I aged I became stronger. I knew I couldn't be the planets protector forever, at least not with my own physical body. I had the greatest sorcerer of the planet to cast my being into this medallion, so the bearer of it could use my gifts to help those in need."
"You willingly stuck yourself in a medallion?" Xander asked in shock. Valace smiled slightly and shook his head.
"No young one. I went to the warriors paradise. I was called back when you began to wear the medallion. I will only be here for a short time. To teach you. To show you the many paths you can take. Then when I leave, you will choose your path. Make your own destiny."
"Okay," Xander said with a still confused but ready voice., "What do I do first?"
Everything went black again.....
The fight wasn't going good. Warrior and Green Lantern were taken out. Darkseid at the moment was content to just watch Superman and Doomsday fight. But who knew when he would change his mind and began to destroy more of the earth. The Titans had been left back long ago to see if they could save some of the people hurt during the battle. Batman was with Robin a few cities back trying to save the patients of Gotham Hospital. Superboy was busy with Wondergirl and Impulse evacuating the city the fight was currently in.. Metropolis.
"I've gotta help him!" Superboy yelled at Wondergirl as she was carrying a woman and a baby away from the battle zone.
"You'll be killed Kon!"
"He's the only real family I've got Cass. I can't just stand here and watch him die." Kon said tears almost visible in his eyes.
"Be careful Kon. Please." Wondergirl said with a sad smile as she landed beside him and let the woman and little kid go. Kon leaned over and kissed the superheroine on the lips quickly before taking off into the air. Wondergirl smiled a sad smile and for a split second thought she'd never see Kon-El again. Then she forced that thought from her mind and went back to work.
With a groan Xander opened his eyes and realized he was still in the hospital. The respirator had been removed late in the night and he sat up slowly. He noticed Giles and Buffy talking in the corner while watching the TV.
"Anyone get the license number on the plane that hit me?" Xander asked with a smile. Buffy and Giles whirled around quickly and were on him in a moment. Xander hugged them back and smiled till he saw the TV.
"What the hell?" He asked as the camera showed Guy Gardner being attended to by paramedics.
"Doomsday is back. Along with Darkseid." Giles said with a careful voice.
"I gotta go help them."
"NO!," Buffy yelled at him as she stood off the bed., "Your in no condition...." Her statement stopped abruptly as Xander stood out of bed.
"I need some clothes."
"Um... I'll get you some scrubs." Buffy said and quickly exited the room blushing. The hospital gown didn't cover much.
"So what's going down Giles? How bad is it?"
"The JLA has been incapacitated. Only Wonder Woman is still able to fight and she's pretty messed up. Warrior and Green Lantern were beaten just moments ago by Darkseid. It doesn't look good Xander."
ËœIt will get worse if we don't hurry.Ëœ A voice deep in Xanders mind said. Xander only nodded with it in agreement.
"Superboy just entered the fray, but Darkseid decided to fight again as well. I don't know how much longer the two heroes can keep this up."
"Here." Buffy said loudly as she ran in the room and handed Xander a set of OR scrubs. He quickly lost the gown and began to dress. Before Buffy could blink the young man was dressed.
"I gotta get over there."
"Be careful Xander." Giles said with a very emotional voice.
"Yeah, Xand. We already thought we lost you once." Buffy added. Xander smiled lopsided.
"I'll see ya later. Tell Wills I said hi." With a gust of air the young man was gone......
Kon-El slammed the hardest right he could manage into the back of the monster known as Doomsday. As the monster fell forward Superman slammed an uppercut into it's chin causing the beast to flip backwards and land on it's face. It was up in a matter of milli-seconds. Superman flew off the ground intent on keeping Doomsday reeling only to be hammered with blows in the side by Darkseid who had decided to enter the fight again. Superboy turned his eyes from Doomsday to see the figures of Superman and Darkseid collide. That was his first mistake. With speeds faster than the flash the big monster wrapped a hand around the young heroes throat. And began to squeeze. As the air was being forced from the young clones body the young man did the one thing he could think of. Reaching out with his Tactile Telekinesis he pushed his powers to there limit and began to crush the inner skeleton of the large monster. Doomsday screamed in pain and rage as he threw the young hero into the daily planet building with the force of a missile.
"Can't believe I hurt him." Kon said to himself as he stood shakily and looked around himself for Doomsday. A short distance away he heard Superman scream in pain. He flew toward the sound faster than he ever thought he could possibly fly.
The Man Of Steel swung a hard right colliding with the face of Darkseid and knocking the god to the ground, the asphalt shattering at the impact. The Kryptonian turned just in time to take a right cross from Doomsday that sent the superman flying through a building and sliding across the ground.
The Lex Corp tower stood high above the rest of the city known as Metropolis.
"What should we do Mr. Luthor?" A young man with a briefcase asked as both he and Lex looked out the large windows of the office at the fight ragging mere blocks away.
"Leave. There is nothing we can do. This city, this world. Is once again in the hands of Superman."
"He won't fail sir." The young man said confidently.
Superboy flew onto the scene landing between Superman and the two villains. He didn't know what he was going to do. But, he knew he had to hold them off long enough for Superman to get up.
"Um. Can't we all just get along?" The young clone asked with a nervous chuckle. He swallowed the lump that formed in his throat and took a deep breath then he did something surprising. He knelt.
"Giving up so easy?" Darkseid asked while laughing., "The successor of Superman, a coward." As Darkseid laughed Superboy looked up with an evil smile.
"Not a coward. Just smarter than you, that's all." Darkseid's laugh died quickly as the ground around them started to shake and the earth underneath his feet flew up engulfing him like the flames of apocalypse as the god was pulled under the earth and slammed hard into the gas lines underneath the city. The explosion blew the four warriors away from the scene. Superboy hit the ground hard but barely felt it as his TTK aura made him bounce off the pavement. The young man landed on his feet beside the already standing Superman.
"Good move." Superman said simply as he used his x-ray vision to look through the smoke around them.
"It's all I could think of."
"It worked." Superman said as he quickly pushed his young clone out of the way and swung at the large figure of Doomsday as it ran through the smoke. Both figures fell away from each other in pain and shock as the force of there blow created a small crater around them.
"That was a stupid mistake young one." Darkseid said as he walked slowly up to Kon-El. A menacing look on his gray face.
"Well, never said I was Robin." The clone said with a shrug of his shoulders.
"Your going to know the wrath of Darkseid."
"Hey," A voice said as red beams slammed into the back of Darkseids head knocking him forward., "No one threatens my friends!" The figure flew over the downed Darkseid and landed beside Kon.
"Xan?" Kon asked in complete shock. Xander nodded his head with a small smile.
"Yeah. Let's take care of this and then help Supes."
"You realize we're going to get our asses handed to us right?" Kon asked with a small smirk.
"Yeah, but ya know we always act like badasses till it actually happens. It's the teenage Superhero code." Xander said with a smile. He enjoyed the banter he and Kon always had when in a fix. It took the edge off.
"Point. Well, let's kick his ass then."
"Why not." Xander said and both heroes took off toward the just standing form of Darkseid.
Superman's teeth ground together with brutal force as he and Doomsday began a game of mercy. The large monster growled out in pure hatred toward the kryptonian as a crater began to form beneath them. The force both man and monster put in there struggle causing the ground to quake around them. As the two figures locked in a fight to the death Superman took a moment to look over at Superboy. And was surprised to see both Superboy and Alexander Harris flying at mach speed toward the Lord Darkseid.
"Hope they know what there doing." Superman said to himself as he yelled in anger and pushed Doomsday back ever so slightly.
The Sunnydale High library was filled with the scoobies. All looking through a million books as Giles sat on the phone impatiently.
"Dubbilex!," Giles said with excitement into the phone.," I have a plan to help Xander and the others. I need you to contact any person you can think of with a magic background. Preferably a strong background." Giles waited a few moments seemingly listening to Dubbilex.
"Thank you." He put the phone down then picked it up seconds later. He dialed a long number from memory and smiled as it was answered on the first ring.
"This is Rupert Giles. I need to speak with Quentin Travers."
The headquarters of the JSA was nearly empty. Only a few heroes watched the broadcast. The others were off world.
"We have to go out there." Alan Scott AKA Sentinel said with a strong voice as he looked around and received a nod from his friend and former flash Jay Garrick.
"But," Courtney AKA Star-Spangle Kid started., "That's Doomsday, he just took out the JLA like they were nothing."
"Look at the screen Courtney.," Alan Scott said with a slack face. The destruction was getting worse by the second.," Superboy and that other young man are fighting. We can at least be there incase there's an opening."
"I agree." Jay Garrick the only other member present said with a frown on his face. The trio looked at one another then began to leave there sanctuary.
Xander slid across the ground in pain and reached up to wipe the blood from a fresh cut on his forehead.
"Damn," He growled out in pain., "That really hurt." He stood quickly and then noticed Jay Garrick out of the corner of his eye. He nodded to the older man with respect before flying from the ground and slamming into Darkseids chest with his right shoulder shoving both of them back into the Metropolis STAR building. Superboy flew in behind them only to be met by Xander's body as Darkseid threw him out of the rubble with a hard right fist. Both young heroes hit the ground in a roll.
"Okay," Xander said as they both stood and watched Darkseid walk toward them., "We are definatly getting our asses kicked."
"Gee, ya think?" Superboy asked sarcastically as he wiped the blood from his split lip., "We need a plan." The young clone said as Darkseid walked ever closer.
"Think you can hold him in place for a few seconds?," Xander asked quietly., "Like you did with Knockout that time?"(1)
"Yeah," Superboy said and drew in a steady breath., "I'm pretty sure I can."
"Get to it SB. You set him up.," Xander stated falling into a fighting stance., "I'll knock him down." Superboy dropped down and put both hands on the ground in pure concentration. Darkseid took one more step before he stood rooted to the ground.
"What in the...?" Darkseid started to ask only to have his head knocked backward as Xander flew forward with his new speed and slammed a knee into the gods' jaw. As the knee connected the young hero spun and lashed out with a heel kick that would have turned Darkseid around if Superboy had not had the alien held to the ground with all his TTK strength. Xander threw a right that came down and slammed into the left side of Darkseids head then followed it up with the hardest left uppercut he had ever thrown. The force was enough to break the hold Superboy had on Darkseid and send the monster flying through the air through more than one building. Xander turned back to see Superboy still on his knees breathing hard.
"That guy is strong." The young Teen Of Steel said with a small smirk. Both young men turned when they heard a female voice cheering them on. The Star Spangled Kid couldn't believe that the two young men had hurt Darkseid. For that matter neither could the two older members of the JSA.
"That kid looks familiar." Alan Scott said as he looked at Xander's face in concentration.
"Kinda reminds me of Kyle." Jay said without thought and the face of Sentinel cleared in an instant and a smile took the place of the frown.
"It's the kid."
"What?" Courtney asked in confusion as they watched Darkseid once again begin to fight the two young men.
"The kid that took over for Kyle a few months back."
"Really?" Courtney asked in shock as Xander was slammed into the ground with cratering force and Superboy was knocked into the air at supersonic speeds. Sentinel just nodded his head and looked for the opening he needed to enter the fight.
Superman was in pain. Doomsday had wrapped his arms around the Man Of Steels throat and he didn't know if he was going to be able to break the hold. He fired his heat vision into the eyes of Doomsday at point blank range causing the creature to scream in pain and release the Kryptonians throat. Superman pulled back with his right arm and threw all he had into the punch. Doomsday flew backward with Superman flying through the air just behind him.
The anger was plainly visible on Giles' face as he spoke into the phone in an threatening voice.
"You listen to me Travers.," Giles said with pure malice in his voice., "If you don't do this then by god I'll be in England by the weekend to shove that large oak desk up our pompous ass!" After a few more moments Giles smiled as sat the phone in it's cradle.
"The covenant has begun the spell. All we need are a few people around the monster for them to lock onto."
"Is that all?" A voice said that caused the Scooby Gang to spin around and fall into different forms of fighting stances.
"Zatana?" Giles asked in complete surprise. A smile formed on his face as he moved over and shared a quick hug with the woman in stockings and a magicians uniform
"Hello Rupert, good to see you again but we have something much more important than catching up to do right now."
"Of course. Can you get us to the battle?" Giles asked with a pleading voice. Zatanna smiled and nodded her head., "Join hands with me." The scoobs immediately went into a circle.
"elttab eht ot su ekat." The scoobs vanished in a bright light.
Batman flew the Bat-Plane over the city of Metropolis with a grim look under his cowl. He moved closer to the battle zone and quickly armed the weapons on the plane. He didn't want to hurt any innocents but it seemed that the only chances he had to even hurt Doomsday or Darkseid were the missiles on the planes wings. He saw the monster Doomsday moving toward a downed Superman and he thumbed the missile select switch in the cockpit. He sighed as he fired.
The blast came as a shock and stopped Xander in his tracks as he ran toward Darkseid. He looked into the sky and saw Batman circling with the Bat-Plane.
"Looks like he figured out a plan. Hope it works." Xander said to himself before flying forward and slamming a right fist into the stomach of Darkseid. Kon slammed his right shoulder into the back of the aliens knees sending Darkseid sprawling. A huge green anvil appeared above the god and slammed down hard going into the pavement about half way. Xander and Superboy looked over at Sentinel and smiled gratefully. The older man smiled and nodded in understanding. Xander leaned on his knees and took a deep breath. Then he groaned as the green anvil was pushed aside and a slightly worse for wear Darkseid climbed out of the hole.
"Doesn't this guy ever give up?!" Xander yelled at the sky with a voice of pure confusion.
"I will never be beaten." Darkseid said as he stood tall. Alan Scott moved over and stood beside Xander and Superboy.
"I thought it was time to help out." Sentinel said with a smile. Xander looked over at him with a smile of his own.
"Good to see you again Alan."
"You to kid."
"Can you guys catch up when we're not fighting for our lives?" Superboy asked with a humorous voice.
"I don't know, might not get another chance kid." Xander said with a smile on his face.
"Let's just go get our asses kicked again. Please." Superboy said and got in a take off position.
"Sure, lead the way oh fearless one." Xander said causing both Allen and Superboy to snort.
A few hundred yards away the Scoobies appeared in thin air. And a few thousand miles away. The Covenant began to chant.
Xander flew backwards through the air as he took a shot to the jaw from Darkseid. As he flew he forced his upper body around and his feet hit the ground. He leaned forward digging his right hand into the pavement as well as his feet. He finally slid to a stop a few yards in front of the scoobies. He didn't seem to notice them as he prepared to launch back toward the fight.
"XANDER!" Giles screamed loudly causing the young man to turn and face his friends.
"What the hell are you guys doing here?!" Xander asked in shocked anger., "It's to dangerous, get back to Sunnydale."
"As soon as this is over, as soon as you can come back with us." Giles said glaring Xander down with a fatherly look. Xander looked down and cursed silently.
"Look Xan," Willow started as she moved forward., "Giles found a spell that will send Darkseid and Doomsday back to Apocalypse. He got all the witches in the world in on it. But they can only focus on a small space. You need to force Doomsday and Darkseid to get closer to one another."
"Easier said then done." Xander said with a sigh. He looked at Giles and smiled in thanks. Giles only smiled back and nodded.
"I gotta get back out there."
"Don't get dead." Oz said in his normal tone causing Xander to smile widely.
"You kidding? Me?" He took off back toward the fight. Intent on getting Darkseid closer to Doomsday. It seemed like the only chance the group had.
In deep space the Mother Box Aura held in her hands began to beep wildly.
"What the hel...?" Aura started to say before she disappeared in a bright blinding light.
Xander once again slid across the ground as he took a shot to the head from Darkseid. He got up slowly and stumbled a bit before Sentinel steadied him with a green hand.
"What's wrong?" The first Green Lantern asked with a tight voice as he watched Superboy take a strong shot to the ribs.
"Don't," Xander started and gasped in a breath., "Know. Just feeling weaker all of a sudden. Can't figure out why. I think, that, I might not be much use in a few minutes." Xander said before flying off and putting everything he had in a right cross that knocked Darkseid a full city block away from the three heroes. As he completed the punch the young hero almost fell on his face his graceful agility the only thing saving his mouth from an asphalt sandwich.
"You okay Xan?" Superboy asked as he leaned on his own knees trying to catch his breath.
"I don't know. I feel, normal."
"That's not good." Superboy said as Darkseid stood and wiped the blood from his face. That last hit had really hurt the alien.
"That medallion. Gave you powers right?" Superboy asked he watched Sentinel fly above them and slam a large green fist into Darkseids jaw.
"Yeah, Daximite. That's the name of the race." Xander said before catching the look of understanding on Superboy's face.
"Lead." The Teen Of Steel said with an understanding tone.
"What?" Xander asked to confused to ask more.
"Daximites. Lead hurts them very very bad. The amulet is loosing power because of all the lead in the debris around here."
"When did you get so smart?" Xander asked with a small smile. Superboy only shrugged then took off toward Darkseid and Sentinel. Xander stood and tried to follow but he was moving to slow to keep up.
ËœWe're only going to be in there way.Ëœ The voice of Valace said deep in the recess of Xander's mind.
"What do you want me to do? Quit?!" Xander asked slightly angry at the Daximite and at himself.
ËœOf course not, but we have to find a way to fight this monster.Ëœ
"I'm open to suggestions."
In the vast white plane of The Oracles domain the two figures watched with fearful faces.
"We must help him... Them." The female said with an emotion filled voice. The male nodded his head but didn't say anything.
"What is one more rule? We have broken so many lately." The female stated with a small smile. The male smiled back at her slightly.
"Very well. We will give him the option. But the choice must be his."
"Thank you." The female says with a larger smile on her face.
"I'm doing this for myself just as much as I am for you.," The man states with his once again emotionless voice. Then a smile forms on his face., "But your welcome anyway."
Will is the key
The voice resonated in Xander's mind causing him to once again come short of reaching the fight.
"What the hell was that?," Xander asked looking at the scene around him., "Did you do that?" He asked Valace all the while knowing it wasn't the Daximite's voice that had spoke in his head.
ËœI did not. I do not know who or what that was. Nor do I understand it's meaningsËœ
"I don..." Xander was cut off as Alan Scotts' body slammed into his own sending him back at a hard and fast pace. Xander hit the ground first taking the punishment of the blow and slid to a stop. He felt the blood running down his back.
"Get out of here kid. Superboy and I will handle this." Alan said looking at the young man with a caring eye. His daughter really liked the kid.
"Will..." Xander said a smile growing on his face as he watched the green flare around Sentinels' hands. Alan looked at him confused before turning and flying back into the fight. Xander turned and ran as fast as he could. Which was just barely faster than normal toward his friends.
"What hospital did they take Kyle to?" The teen asked with an urgent voice.
"The hospitals are all destroyed. He's at S.T.A.R Labs." Zatanna said with a confused smile at the young man that stood beaten and bloody in front of her.
"I hope I'm still strong enough to get there." Xander said to himself flying into the air as fast as he could. With a last look back he flew in the direction of S.T.A.R Labs.
Superman flew into the air as fast as his powers would carry him. He looked over and saw Superboy and Sentinel fighting Darkseid and saw the form of Xander Harris flying away.
"Must have a plan." Superman thought before turning back and flying down slamming both fist into the chest of Doomsday sending the monster flying backwards. There fight had been a long one. Many innocents had been hurt as Doomsday made his way to Metropolis. Superman was fighting for each of them. Putting everything he had and more into the fight he wasn't sure he could win. It was time for him to put it all on the line again. And he was going to go the distance.
The door to the med center of S.T.A.R Labs exploded inward as Xander flew through it. A new bruise forming on his fist from the stress of the hit. He flew around every hero that could stand and landed finally in front of Kyle Rayner. Green Lantern.
"Give me my ring Kyle." Xander said in a very emotional voice. Kyle looked at Xander and noticed the blood running down the young mans face and body.
"I...I.." Before Kyle could think of a sentence Xander had grabbed the young mans uniform and slammed the Green Lantern against the steel walls of the Med Lab.
"You listen to me Kyle. Screw Gantlet. Screw your promise to Hal. You think that Hal would want all these people to die just so you could restart the corps?" Xander held the young Green Lantern off the floor floating up to look him in the eye.
"The man Hal was wouldn't want that. He'd have given up the entire Green Lantern Corps to save the lives of innocents. It's in the damn job description. Everyone in the Corps knew the risk. I KNOW the risk. So it's going to happen one of two ways Kyle. Your my friend, I respect you. But so help me if you don't give me my ring I'll break your arm." Kyle couldn't think of a response but Warrior could.
"The ring never chose anyone else Xand. It's still under your command. Just take it."
"I don't want to take it Guy. But, I will if I have to." Xander said in a deadly calm voice.
"You don't have to." Kyle said with a small smile., "Just will the ring to you Xander." The Green Lantern said the smile still on his face. Xander frowned in concentration and in seconds was covered in a green aura.
"I'm sorry, Green Lantern." Xander said as he put the young hero down and his ring suited him up for the first time in months. Kyle looked at the kid with a tired and beaten smile. And for the first time Xander noticed how hurt the young man really was.
"Me too. Go get 'em kid."
"Count on it." And with a green blur Xander was gone.
"We better get over there." Kyle said with a pained breath.
"Yeah. We can at least help the kid out." Warrior agreed as he was surrounded in a green aura and both heroes flew toward the door. A small blue figure smiled somewhere else in the universe.
"If only Kal-El had gotten the ring." Gantlet said while watching Xander reach the battle and slam into the Lord Darkseid with not only the power of the Ring. But with the power of the Alien Medallion around his neck.
"Things are really getting interesting."
Darkseid hit the ground. Hard. The force of Xander's last blow had cracked the god's jaw in several places.
"He's back!" Superboy said with a high pitched laughter filled voice. Xander turned from the downed Darkseid and smiled at the young hero.
"Alan," Xander started turning back to the alien as it stood., "Go help big blue. The kid and I got this."
"If your sure kid." Alan said and flew toward the other fight that was several miles away now.
"You think we can take him now?"
"Hold him kid. Just hold him." Xander said a voice filled with no humor. Kon smiled and kneeled once again. And for the second time in the battle Darkseid was held motionless.
The chanting reached it's climax as all over the world large swarms of red and orange energy shot toward the spot of the epic battle. The energies swirled around themselves growing larger and stronger as they made there way across the miles and miles of ocean, desert, and grassland. The magical energies fell into there spot behind the Lord Darkseid. They continued to spin creating a vortex.
"Oh my god." Superboy said with awe as he still concentrated on the hold he had on Darkseid.
"What is that thing?" Xander asked with the same awe filled voice as Superboy.
"It's a boom tube. They opened a Boom Tube."
"Let's make Darkseid go boom then." Xander said his voice barely heard over the roar of the spinning vortex. With a loud scream the young hero flew forward slamming into the alien at speeds that broke the sound barrier. The scoobies hit the pavement as the shockwave from the punch shattered what little glass was intact in the buildings around them. The earth under there feet shook as Darkseid flew into the boom tube in a blur. His form unconscious even before the vortex sucked him in taking him back to his world.
"Now what?!" Superboy yelled as the Boom Tube didn't seem to close.
Superman and Sentinel watched in horror as yet another building fell from the earthquakes the fight was causing. Neither hero wanted to think of all the innocents that had been killed in the fight thus far. Or how many would be killed if they failed.
"Need a hand?" Superboy asked with a smile as he and Xander landed beside the two older heroes.
"Darkseid?" Superman asked.
"He's gone home to bed." Superboy answered with a small smirk that quickly disappeared as Doomsday stood once again and charged them with Flash like speed. All four heroes flew away landing on the ground hard.
"Damn he's fast." Xander said as he shook his head and stood. Before he could think of an attack he was attacked again himself. Doomsday slammed into his chest with a right fist that through the young Green Lantern back into a wall. The force of his blow sending him into the middle of the office building before he could stop his momentum., "And strong. Can't forget strong."
"Xander is slowing down." Giles said with a worried voice. Zattana nodded in agreement but didn't say anything.
"He'll be okay." Oz said with his normal voice. The others stood in silence praying the young werewolf was right.
Superman grunted in pain as his arm was shattered at the elbow by a hammer blow from Doomsday. The weight was taken off as Superboy rammed into the monsters' side with all his strength sending both of them flying into a building. A second later and Superboy flew out backwards as he was hit hard by the monster. He flew through the air fighting to right himself, just before he hit another building an arm reached out and caught him.
"Hit's hard huh?" Xander asked the blood on his face seemingly glowing inside his green aura.
"Y..yeah, 'bout like a nuclear missile."
"Something's wrong with the medallion. I think it's still suffering from the lead poisoning. If we're going to end this it has to be now."
"WHAT THE HELL?!!" A voice screamed causing both young men to turn around a land eyes on Aurora.
"What are you doing here?" Xander asked quickly as he noticed the small mother box beeping in the young heroines hands.
"The hell if I know, one second I'm dancing the next I'm in a war zone."
"No time to talk Aurora." Superboy said about to take off back to help Superman and Sentinel.
"Your motherbox. Could it change the destination of a boom tube?" Xander asked as Superboy flew off toward the fight.
"Is Superboy annoying?" Aurora asked rhetorically with a smile. Xander's lip curled slightly.
"Mind letting me borrow it?"
"I..." The box beeped cutting off the beautiful young heroine and flew into Xander's hands., "Guess not." Aurora finished with a slightly aggravated face. Xander turned and was about to fly away when Kyle yelled stopping him.
"Someone will have to force Doomsday through the Boom Tube. He won't go in without a good reason."
"I'll handle it." Xander said with a smile.
"There's a good chance whoever does it won't make it back." Kyle said stating the obvious and hoping against hope the kid would find another way.
"Life's full of risk." Xander answered taking off toward the fight they were all losing.
"We can't let him do it." Kyle said as he turned to see Warrior who only nodded his head in agreement.
"GET HIM CLOSE TO THE BOOM TUBE!!" Xander yelled as he slammed a hard right cross into the monster's face causing bone slivers to fall from Doomsdays face. The monster stumbled closer toward the tube. Superman flew forward his left arm hanging at his side limply as he slammed his right into the chest of the monster making it stumble back. Sentinel quickly hit Doomsday with a giant green fist to keep the monster reeling. Superboy shot forward and landed an open palm on the monster sending a surge of TTK into it causing Doomsday to stumble again. Xander slammed a hard flying sidekick into the monsters' head before spinning in the air and kicking him with a left leg in the eye. The monster known as Doomsday now stood directly in front of the boom tube. Laughing. Xander smiled and looked at Superboy.
"Hold him down."
"Not a prob GL." Superboy said smiling through his bruised and bloody lips. The young man didn't even kneel as he sent his power through his legs into the ground and used all his concentration to hold the monster in place. Xander held the motherbox up with his left and and smiled at the monster.
"At least your going with me." He muttered lowly to himself and took off in flight. A hand reached out and grabbed his left wrist swinging him around with his own momentum. It took him almost a second to realize that the Motherbox was no longer in his hands.
"Sorry Kid, this ones mine." The man's voice said as his wrist was let go and Xander was sent flying away from the fight. It was then he saw his attacker ram into the still unmoving form of Doomsday sending them both into the tube.
"No." Xander whispered to himself as he stopped his body and took off for the boom tube. Closer, closer, he was within a few feet as the Tube closed itself sending Xander flying through empty air.
Guy Gardner smiled as he tossed Xander away. The kid was strong, but he could still get thrown around by his one time mentor.
"Good luck kid." Guy whispered before turning back toward the monster known as Doomsday. The Warrior looked to his left and nodded at Superboy before flying toward the monster. As he hit Doomsday like he hit his opponents in College Football Superboy released Doomsday sending both hero and villain into the Boom Tube. The motherbox beeped as Warrior continued to throw punch after punch and blast after blast at his enemy.
"Close it." Guy said to the box knowing it would listen. The Warrior to a quick look back to see Xander flying toward the tube. Warrior smiled as the tube sealed. He turned seeing Doomsday laughing.
"Laugh at this." Guy said grabbing the monster and turning it around using all his Vuldarian strength. Doomsdays' laughter stopped and turned into screams as he began fighting Warriors hold. Guy only smiled as he saw the bright yellow end of the tube.
"Bye everyone." The Warrior said to himself as he and Doomsday flew into the burning hot sun.