Disclaimer: Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Torchwood belong to their perspective owners, I am not one of them. I'm just borrowing them for entertainment purposes and no money shall be made from this entertainment.
Author's note: Yes, I should be found and stopped, but I had to do it. Torchwood crosses with BtVS in YAHF. Poor Xander, he won't know what hit him.
Warning: I often follow the episodes to a point, mostly to set up areas where they will diverge due to new events. If you don't like episode rehashes, this may not be for you.
There will be smut, there will be slash (hey, it's Torchwood) and there will swearing and violence.
And yes, I am still working on the Sweeney Todd crossover.
Blue Coats and Guarding the Rifts
Started November 1, 2008
Clothes make a statement. Costumes tell a story.
The parcel went into the mail on September 27th. In the normal course of things, even with the war going on, it would have easily arrived at its destination by the end of the month. Unfortunately an accident, involving a speeding car and a recent rainfall, had rendered the delivery address unreadable and the package was being held at the general post office of its destination city, to be sent back to the return address in London as undeliverable.
At 3:19 am on October 1st something intervened and the package left the post office. Thankfully no one was around to see it leave, which was just as well as they would have been dragged away with it and at that time of night there wouldn't have been anyone there to hear them scream.
At 10 am on October 1st, when Ethan Rayne stepped into the empty store to await the moving truck and hired help that would turn the lonely space he was standing in into a costume shop for a month, he was rather surprised to find a single large package, wrapped in brown butcher's paper and twine, sitting in the middle of an otherwise bare floor.
He approached it carefully. This, after all, was the Hellmouth and it was entirely possible that something might pop out of the innocent looking package and attempt to eat him. He gave the parcel a careful prod with his foot and when it didn't react he bent over and picked it up. He frowned at it, and only just managed to stop himself from giving it a shake in an attempt to try and figure out what was in it.
He carried it over to the sales counter that was part of the limited built in pieces that came with the shop. Laying it down carefully on the glass top he squinted at it for a moment, before sighing and digging out the reading glasses he kept trying to pretend he didn't need. With those firmly seated on his nose he took another look at his unexpected gift.
Frowning was once again called for as the parcel had obviously suffered recent water damage. The ink of the recipients name and address was faded, smeared and had run until it had hit the bottom edge of the paper the box was wrapped in. It now held more in common with the ink blots that psychiatrists use to make one look at to determine a man's sanity, or lack there of, than the neat writing it probably had once been.
The return address had survived the damage and was for a tailor shop in London. A tailor shop Ethan had heard of, but only because his grandfather had lamented more than once about its loss in the London Blitz. The postmark was also for London and the date on it was September 27th, which would have meant that it had been mailed a few days ago, if it wasn't for the fact that the year was listed as 1940.
Fifty-seven years out of place.
Ethan picked the package up again and tilted it back and forward in his hands for a moment before putting it back down and pulling out a folding knife. He was not one to deny his curiosity. In fact he was not one to deny himself much of anything, unless abstaining was the key to getting what he next wanted.
The blade was sharp and he carefully cut away the twine and then with just as much care he pulled the paper away to reveal a box of the type that a clothing shop would have used in days gone by. On top of the box an envelope had been taped down. Ethan pulled it off with some difficulty, the tape still strong, which was odd for something that, given its age, should have been dried and flaking by now. On the envelope was the word Captain, written in a style that, while masculine, still reminded Ethan of his mother's graceful hand.
The flap on the envelope had not been sealed and Ethan flipped it open, pulling out and unfolding a single sheet of paper. Not surprisingly it was a letter, one written by the same hand that had signed the envelope. Ethan shoved his glasses a little further up his nose and began to read.
Enclosed please find one (1) RAF wool great coat, one (1) RAF uniform jacket, one (1) pair RAF uniform slacks, two (2) dress shirts, one (1) belt, one (1) pair of braces and two (2) ties.
We apologise for the delay in repairing the coat and uniform, but the damage was, as I am sure you remember, quite extensive. We hope that this did not cause any problems, as you did specify that there was no hurry for the items as you have a spare coat and uniform to fall back on. The shirts, belt, braces and ties have been sent with the repaired items and they complete the order you placed with us when you left the coat and uniform for repair.
We have sent this parcel to the usual address in Cardiff and we hope it finds you well in these troubling and trying times. Thank you as always for your patronage.
Weeks and Sons
An address in Cardiff. Well that might explain a few things. Cardiff was… different, or at least Ethan had always thought so and he wasn't the only magic user that felt the same way. Actually now that he considered it, there was something about Sunnydale that reminded him of Cardiff. Not the town itself, but something, something not very nice.
Hmm, he'd never actually considered the possibility that there could be an active Hellmouth in Cardiff. He'd never stuck around the place long enough to find out. Forget living there, just visiting it had always invoked a feeling of vertigo in him. A type of dizziness that he could usually only get by standing teetering on the edge of something that went down a very, very long way. Still, he doubted that whatever it was, was a Hellmouth. While Cardiff did feel dangerous to those with magical senses, it also felt neutral. As if what ever happened, for good or ill, wasn't its fault, but was rather a matter of luck and timing.
Ethan shook his head over his sudden flight of fancy and put it aside to think about another day. He read the missive over one more time, smirking down at the letter in his hand as he did, before opening the box. Inside he found a vintage World War II RAF uniform and coat that looked very much like it had been packed into its box on September 27th 1997 and not September 27th 1940. He pulled each piece out and inspected them, almost expecting to find the unknown Captain's name sewn into them somewhere, smirking even wider when he didn't.
A vintage World War II Royal Air Force uniform and coat sitting in a soon to be costume shop with no way to find its original owner. Well, he was sure it would make someone a fabulous Halloween costume and it would be interesting to see just what effect something that had been real, that had belonged to someone real, would actually do to someone wearing it as a costume.
And at the very least, if he tracked them down before the spell wore off, he might be able to find out what the Captain's name had been.
Xander could not believe how his last two days were going. First he almost got pummelled by Larry, a usual occurrence sure, but never a fun one. Next he gets saved from said pummelling by Buffy, also not an unusual occurrence, the being saved part at least. The fact that it had been from a high school bully and not a vampire or other denizen of the night however, had caused a blow to both his ego and his rep. Better by far to take his lumps in school than be saved by a girl, something he very, very carefully explained to Buffy (hey, he wasn't stupid, he knew she could snap him in half, but sometimes you need to fight your own battles).
After all of that he got volunteered for trick or treat babysitting duty and had to scrap up a costume on a limited budget, which he had done, thank you very much. Then, on the way home from the costume shop Xander had the joy of another run in with Larry where the macho jerk had accidentally on purpose snapped the plastic rifle he'd bought for his soldier costume in half. Which was why on Halloween day, just after school, he was stopping by Ethan's shop in an attempt to get another rifle before he ran home to throw on the rest of his costume and head over to pick up the girls.
Ethan looked up as a young man barged into his shop, ready to tell the teenager that he was about to close up. Business had been very good and by this point he didn't have much left to sell.
"I just need a plastic rifle," the boy said as he blew by on his way to the bins of replica weapons. Apparently he had picked up on Ethan's 'we're closed' face and chose to head him off before he could say anything. The boy was obviously trying to be quick, but he wasn't going to be having much luck, as business really had been very good. There were going to be a lot of guns out there tonight. Too bad they wouldn't do much against the other things that were going to be out there.
Xander quickly pawed his way through the bins and then looked around blindly, hoping that the rifles had just been moved to another part of the store. He looked over at the sales guy who was looking at him with a raised eyebrow and an amused expression.
"Ah, I don't suppose you have any toy rifles hiding somewhere in the store?"
The guy shook his head. "Sorry, sold the last one an hour ago. Could I interest you in something smaller? I still have a few handguns left."
Xander felt his shoulders slump and he shook his head. "Nah, never mind, I'll just have to make do with the fatigues I have at home."
The guy looked strangely upset at the thought of Xander not having a gun and offered to make a quick check of the store to see if someone hadn't changed their minds about buying one and gone and left it in some strange, out of the way place.
"I don't want a be a trouble."
"No trouble, why don't you see if someone didn't think it would be funny to stuff one of them in the bins of magic staffs and broomsticks," he pointed towards the section of the store that seemed dedicated to fairytale creatures, "and I'll check in the costumes."
Xander gave a nod and went to check. Sadly he didn't find a rifle, although he did wonder if the toy lawnmower really belonged in that section and if it didn't, just where did it belong? Xander sighed and threw up his hands in defeat, incomplete costume it was going to have to be. He turned and headed back to the salesman, not really expecting him to have had any luck either and found him standing in front of what looked to Xander like a replica of a WWII RAF uniform (he might not be an expert on militaria, but he still had the knowledge of multiply reruns of Hogan's Heroes to fall back on).
"Any luck?" Xander asked him.
The guy looked at him and shook his head. "No, sorry." He turned his head to look at the costume again. "You know, I was really hoping that someone would rent this costume, it's too good to have to sit Halloween out."
Xander shook his head. "Yeah, I'm surprised no one wanted it. I would if I could afford it, but just buying a second rifle was going to wipe out what little money I have at the moment."
The guy looked at him with a perplexed expression. "What do you mean, a second rifle?"
"I bought one here yesterday, but it met with an accident," he said, and then under his breath he add, "named Larry."
Xander was about to thank the salesman for his help when he noticed a purely evil grin stretch across the man's face. "Well we can't have defective merchandise stop you from having the perfect costume." He plucked the uniform off the rack and moved to hand it to Xander. Startled he moved back a half step. "I really can't afford..."
"Nonsense, consider it a favour to me, I would really like to see this costume come to life tonight, as it were, and besides, I actually got it as a free bonus when I was setting up the store, so it isn't like it will cost me anything to lend it out to you."
Xander looked at the costume with something like longing etched on his face, but even he knew that in Sunnydale looking a gift horse in mouth wasn't just common sense, it was pretty much a necessity if you wanted to stay alive past the Tuesday of any given week.
Of course, today was Friday.
Somehow he didn't think that would save him if there was anything hinky going on though.
"How come someone hasn't already rented it?" There had be something wrong with it, right?
The guy looked the costume over and gave a little shrug. "I really don't know. It's a very nicely done costume, although.... it is incomplete now that I think of it. I don't actually have the hat or shoes that should have gone with the set. That may be why no one ever committed to renting it. I also had a couple of shoppers decide against it as they felt it would have been too hot to wear the great coat for long, even if it is the end of October."
Actually, although he wouldn't be telling the boy this, Ethan had noticed that everyone who had shown any interest in the uniform had changed their minds about renting it just as soon as they'd touched it. Why, he wasn't sure. The uniform did seem to have a bit of an energy field around it that had nothing to do with the spells Ethan had laid over it. He suspected that it might be some kind of a spell, but since he didn't recognize it and it didn't clash with the changing spell, he'd ignored it.
Maybe it was an anti theft spell? It did only seemed to affect someone if they were thinking about wearing it. Of course, that didn't explain why everyone who'd touched the thing went off to pick out a costume that was as light hearted as they could find. The uniform appeared to be directly responsible for Ethan having rented out all of the Marx Brother's costumes he'd had in stock, including the Zeppo one (where did that one come from anyway?), every adult sized clown suit, furry animal costume and in one interesting turn of events, one customer, who didn't seem the type, had even decided to rent a dress and go in drag.
Ethan was really curious to see how that might turn out.
"Well, I can wear my own shoes, live without the cap and I will be outside so overheating probably won't be a problem." Ethan brought his attention back to the boy as he said that.
"Great, just let me get the rental form filled out and it's all yours for the night." Instead of handing it over to Xander Ethan carried the uniform, coat and the bag of extras around the counter and bagged them, so that the boy wouldn't have the chance to touch the uniform and change his mind. He suspected that as soon as he got it home, even if the costume did disturb him, he'd still end up wearing it. Ethan pulled out a rental form and got the boy to fill in his name, address and the rest of the stuff that made this exchange seem legit. While he was doing so Ethan had a sudden thought and he fished a standard plastic revolver with a cheesy plastic holster out of a near by box and slid it into the bag with the costume. At... he looked at the rental sheet for a name, at Xander's questioning look he just shrugged and said, "every officer needs a side arm."
Jack did a full 360 degree turn as he took in the sight of a not so quiet night in what looked like Medium Town America.
What the hell? Had he gone and fallen through the rift or something? The last thing he could remember was dropping his uniform off at his tailor's in London, not even sure he'd be getting it back, what with the Blitz and all, and the next thing he knew, he was here. Wherever here was.
Well wherever here was it was going to be an unholy mess to clean up. Everywhere there were little aliens, big aliens, some things that reminded him far too much of the run in he'd had with old ones, the so called fairies that had slaughtered his squad back in the early 1900's and mixed in with all of that there were a lot of screaming, freaked out humans in fancy dress.
Wherever this was, they were probably going to have to retcon the town's water supply once it was over.
A growl to his left reminded him that getting killed wasn't really something he wanted to do tonight, especially since his spare coat and uniform were at the tailor's, so he pulled his revolver.
He turned to his right to see a very fetching young redhead, wearing close to nothing, run up to him. It was a pity that she was really too young for him, although that didn't mean he couldn't take a minute to appreciate what she was willing to show off.
The growling thing to his left chose that moment to jump him.
Willow screamed Xander's name as he went down under a mass of scales and muscles. Then she blinked in shock as Xander rolled with the creature, pinning it to the ground with arms and legs as he looked at it with perplexed curiosity.
"Didn't I use to date your brother?" He asked it, which caused the creature to stop struggling and take a closer look at the human on top of him. Willow, for her part, stuck her finger in one of her ears and gave it a little wiggle, certain that she hadn't heard Xander right.
The creature obviously decided that Xander had never dated any member of its family and roared at him. Xander's face scrunched up in disgust and he let go with his right arm long enough to plough a fist into the creatures face. The thing went limp under him and he climbed off, shaking his head.
"Breath like a methane reactor going critical, jaw like spun glass."
Jack looked back at the girl, who was standing there, hugging herself as if she were cold, which she just might be in those clothes.
"Sorry, miss, I'm not Xander, sadly enough," he said as he gave her an inviting smile and another look over. Then he turned his attention away from her, making a search of the ground until he found the gun he'd dropped when he'd been attacked. He picked it up, straightening to find the young lady in front of him.
"But, but you are Xander."
Jack smiled his best dimpled face smile as he holstered his weapon. He suspected that the girl was going into shock and he spoke quietly to her.
"Sorry to disappoint, Captain Jack Harkness, at your service." He gave a little bow and held out his hand, intending to take hers and give it a kiss. Instead his hand went through hers and he stepped back, pulling his gun again as he did.
"Wow, that has got to be one of the best holograms I've ever seen. So, where are you really?"
"I'm not a hologram," she snapped back at him, sounding and looking like she wasn't far from panicking, "and I'm laying over there... I think I'm dead, actually."
Circling the hologram carefully and fully expecting to end up regretting this, Jack headed over to where the girl pointed. He found a sheet covered body collapsed on the ground and pulled the material away from it to find the physical form of the hologram, girl, whatever, who was standing next to him. A quick check of her pulse showed that she was stone cold dead.
"Xander, I think everyone's become their costumes. I was dressed as a ghost and now, I think I am one."
Jack shook his head. "That isn't possible."
Jack actually meant that her being a ghost wasn't possible, but Willow thought he meant the part about becoming their costumes. She nodded towards a darkened window of the house she'd 'died' beside. "Check out your refection, then tell me it isn't possible.
Jack frowned at her, but turned towards the window anyway.
Holy crap, he was a teenager again. What, not being able to die wasn't bad enough, now he was going to have to do it and puberty at the same time?
"Xander?" The girl, ghost, whatever asked him quietly.
Jack's brow wrinkled up and he took a closer look at his wavering reflection. Teenager yes, but not him as a teenager. Whoever this body belonged to, it wasn't him.
"I don't think I'm Xander at the moment, even if I do seem to be borrowing his body."
He smiled at her. "Don't worry, I'm sure he's still in here somewhere." At least he hoped he was, as the thought that this girl's Xander could right at this moment be wandering around in his body was enough to make him break out in a cold sweat. His men had life and death to deal with, they didn't need some lost teenager trying to fake his way through leading them. He'd get them dead.
"I don't suppose you know anyone who might have some idea of what's going on here?"
It was a long shot, but the fact that she hadn't joined in with the general running and screaming that everyone else seemed to be doing gave him the feeling that she might have a better grasp of what was happening than anyone else would. Besides, a native guide was better than floundering around in the dark, as equally as lost as her Xander was.
The girl thought for a moment. "Giles, he'll know what to do, or if he doesn't he'll know where to find out what to do. I think he said he'd be at the library tonight, catching up."
"Okay, then lets head to the library." He reached down and pulled Willow's body up, settling it over his shoulders in a fireman's carry. "Lead the way."
On their way to the school library Jack opted to hot wire an SUV, since carrying a dead body through the centre of town while being attacked by costume affected people seemed like a bad idea. Of course, that was also the moment when Jack realized that he didn't have his wrist strap, which would have shortened the time it took to steal a car from minutes to seconds. He went through his pockets, but found them bereft of the items he'd usually had on hand. He did however find a wallet and a set of keys he'd never seen before. A quick look at the wallet showed a photo id student card that featured the face he'd seen in the window earlier. The keys, bless his heart, were using a mini multi-use tool with advertising from a car mechanic on it as a key chain.
Of course all of that searching turned out to be unnecessary as the first SUV they came to had its doors hanging open with its keys still in the ignition. Its owners had obviously left in a hurry. And here he'd been hoping to impress the redhead by deftly defeating the vehicles security system.
Jack loaded Willows body into the back and took the driver's side, which felt like it was on the wrong side of the car, as he'd become use to British vehicles that were set up for driving on the left side of the road. Willow got in on the passenger side.
"I can't shut the door."
Which was kind of weird when he thought about it, because she could sit. Still, Jack got out and did a quick jog around the vehicle, shutting the door. Then he turned and punched the demon who had just tried to sneak up on him in the stomach, following that shot with a left hook to its jaw. The thing was staggered, but not down, however Jack didn't have the time to play with it and he sent the thing sprawling with a shove of his foot, before dashing back around the car. He hopped in, started it and pulled away from the demon in what almost looked like one smooth action, rather than a series of them.
The girl was looking at him in wide eyed terror as he drove.
"Something the matter?"
"I..I..I.." She moved and for a moment Jack thought she was going to try to attack him, but when she aborted the move suddenly, he realized that she had been intending to hug him.
"I was afraid that you were going to get hurt there for a moment."
But he heard what she didn't say. She'd thought he'd been about to get killed.
Jack was just opening his mouth to reassure her, to tell her that she didn't have to worry about him, because he couldn't actually die, when he had a sudden epiphany. He couldn't die, but that didn't mean that Xander's body held the same ability. Just because he'd become his costume, and didn't he still need to figure out how that worked, but just because the boy had Jack's mind didn't mean he had Jack's body. After all, he still looked like Xander.
"Um, you're driving on the left side of the road."
Jack swore under his breath and yanked the steering wheel over so the car was once again on the right side of the road.
"Sorry, I've been living in Wales for.... for a few years now."
Willow just nodded.
"So," Jack said, "tell me how to get to the library.
If the situation hadn't been so tense he'd have enjoyed the SUV more, he'd never driven one before, but he liked how it handled. Its style also placed his current time period to somewhere around the end of the 20th century and the start of the 21st.
On the drive over he finally learned Willow's name and by the time they got to the library they had picked up a few people along the way. Buffy, who appeared to be seriously time displaced, had shrieked at the SUV, calling it a demon before promptly fainting. Cordelia, a young woman who looked very, very lovely in her cat costume, even with the tears at one shoulder and Angel, a young man who set off Jack's danger instincts to a new and unique level, which was okay, because he certainly set off a few other instincts as well. Despite the current danger, or perhaps because of it, or more likely because Jack was just Jack, he had to admit that wherever he was, they certainly did grow them cute around here.
They barged into the library, Angel carrying Buffy and Jack carrying Willows body, with the two girls bringing up the rear. Their entrance nearly gave the librarian a heart attack if the sudden scattering of cataloguing cards was anything to go by. Giles turned out to be an older man, or at least older than the kids, as he was probably in his early forties. He was also British enough to add starch to anyone's shorts, Jack's especially. Still, he decided to leave the flirting for later, assuming that there would be a later.
He let Willow explain the current events to the man, since she seemed to know more about what was going on anyway.
"So," the librarian said as they tried to figure out what exactly was happening. "Willow was dressed as a ghost," he looked down at her dead body laid out on the reading table and swallowed back a lump, "and now she is a ghost. Buffy was dressed as a noble woman and now she is," he looked at the young girl in a ball gown, slumped over in a chair, "apparently unconscious from fear once again. Xander went as a World War Two Royal Air Force Captain, who for some reason still has an American accent..."
"American volunteer," Jack added helpfully.
"Ah, and Cordelia went as a cat and is, still herself. Why?"
Jack noticed as Willow forcefully clamped down on saying anything about Cordelia being catty even if she hadn't become one.
"Better quality costume?" Cordelia suggested.
For a moment Giles looked like he was going to dismiss Cordelia's suggestion as silly, then he thought about it. "Where did you get your costume?"
"Party Town of course." Cordelia said, as if shopping anywhere else at Halloween would have been completely beneath her.
"And you three?"
Xander just looked back at him blankly and if Buffy had been conscious she would probably have been equally as blank, but he saw Willow start and then frown in thought. "We all went to a new place, Ethan's"
Jack saw Giles' eyes narrow in anger and smiled.
Whoever this Ethan guy was, his security was crap. All six of them could have snuck up on him, even with Buffy in the group. Thankfully they'd left her, Cordelia and Willow's body back at the library with Angel to guard them. So it was just him, Giles and ethereal Willow doing a break and enter into a costume shop on Halloween night.
All three of them moved into the back of the store and stopped suddenly at the sight of an altar with a two faced statue on it.
"Oh, you have got to be kidding me." Jack said, shaking his head in denial. No way, no how was some spell casting mumbo jumbo responsible for this mess. There were plenty of alien species that could have pulled the mind switch. Although he had to admit there weren't many that could have pulled off the time travel as well, and there were even fewer who would have bothered.
"That's Janus, a Roman mystical God," Giles said, as he looked around for the mage that was using the altar.
"What does it mean?" Willow asked, her eyes focused on the statue itself.
"Primarily, it represents the division of self. Male and female. Light and dark..."
"Chunky and creamy style. No, sorry. That's peanut butter."
Jack pulled his revolver and aimed it at the smirking costumer while Giles stepped protectively in front of Willow.
"Xander, Willow, get out of here now."
Jack shook his head. "Not a chance."
Jack scowled at the librarian, but backed away, escorting Willow to the door of the shop, his hand hovering above the small of her back as he was physically unable to touch her.
"Willow, you get back to the library. I'll make sure that Giles gets out of here safely."
Willow shook her head vigorously. "He told both of us to leave."
"Like I said, not a chance. Giles doesn't look like he's thinking with his head at the moment, so someone needs to stay and make sure he does. You should head back and let everyone know what's happening. Besides, it would probably be best for you to be close to your body for when we manage to find a way to fix this."
Willow smiled at him, although it was one that held shadows at its edges. "Thanks for not saying 'if' we fix this."
"We'll fix this," he told her, pouring every bit of sincerity into his words as he could, "now get going."
Willow nodded and took off running. Jack watched her go for a few moments, admiring her form and thinking that whoever Xander was, he was one lucky kid to have a Willow in his life. He smiled one of his rare, true, sadly contemplative smiles and headed back in, raising an eyebrow as he heard the sound of flesh hitting flesh, and not in a fun, naked sort of way.
Leaning in the doorway to the back room, Jack watched as Giles professionally worked over the idiot who had apparently orchestrated tonight's FUBAR. Jack raised one of his eyebrows again. Who knew that a librarian could be so vicious and look so hot while doing it.
"And you said Rupert the Ripper was long gone," Ethan gasped out from his place on the floor. Ethan looked up and saw Jack. "Ah, the good Captain. I don't suppose I could have your name? The package I found your uniform in had suffered some water damage, so I never did find out who you were."
"Ethan," Giles said through gritted teeth, "how do I stop the spell."
"Oh, come on Ripper, surely you can give me a few moments for curiosities sake."
Giles kicked him in the stomach, hard enough that Ethan rose several inches in the air and seemed to hover for a moment as if in an attempt to defy gravity, before thudding back to Earth very much unable to fly.
Ethan gasped around bruised ribs, "Janus, break the statue."
Giles grabbed the statue and threw it hard against a wall, shattering it into pieces. Jack, who'd been about to suggest that Giles work Ethan over a little more before believing the first thing that Ethan told him froze with his mouth halfway open and shuddered.
Xander took in a great heaping breath of air, let it out in a series of pants and bent over with his hands on his thighs. When he looked up he saw that Ethan had disappeared and Giles was looking around the place with a seriously pissed off expression on his face.
"Ah, Xander, you must be back, the Captain was much more respectful."
"Yeah well, that's because he thought you were hot." Xander's eyes flew all the way open and he slapped both hands over his mouth, mortified.
"He thought I was what?"
"Nothing, never mind."
Giles looked for a moment like he was going to push the issue, then he obviously decided that he really just didn't want to know.
Spike gave a frustrated moan as all the demons and whatnots in his general area suddenly became frightened whiney children. Ah well, it had been neat while it lasted, but he'd really hoped to have had a run in with the Slayer. From what Dru had said yesterday she would have been easy picking tonight. Now though, she was probably back to her usual resourceful self.