John Hart, Not a Vampire
Legal notice: I don't own any of the rights to Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Torchwood.
Notes: Set during season 6 of BtVS and after CoE Torchwood. AU for continuity purposes, season 6 of BtVS will be occurring in 2009
Night had fallen on Sunnydale, California like it did with most other towns. Most other towns however didn't have the problems Sunnydale faced when the Sun when down. When the Sun went down, all sorts of creatures that went bump in the night came out to play (and depending on how much they had had to drink some of them had a harder time not bumping into things than others.) The blonde vampire known as Spike fell into the latter category that evening. Spike had another row with the Slayer, which had ended up with not only his heart being broken, but he was pretty sure a couple of ribs to boot. He stumbled through the alley way in his black leather jacket and pants weaving his way back to his crypt. He was too far gone in his cups to notice the orange and yellow lights swimming in the alley behind him. The lights grew larger and seemed to gain substance. There was a rush of air and a blonde man wearing a red officer's jacket from the Napoleonic wars, a black tee shirt, black leather pants, and mid-calf riding boots could be seen within the lights. He had a saber slung low across his left hip and a belt with a pair of matching holsters carrying large, futuristic looking pistols around his waist. He fell out of the swirling light show and bumped into the wall of the alley. The lights imploded and the man looked around, a frown growing on his face. "This doesn't look like the nude beaches of the Hedonism asteroid," John Hart said. He raised his left wrist and looked at the device imbedded in the leather strap. He screamed in rage and picked up a small trash can. John threw it across the alley and drew both pistols. "Dammit! Dammit! Dammit!" he yelled, shooting fist sized holes in the defenseless trashcan with each "Dammit". "I can't believe this is happening. Not only did Jack take off and leave without saying good-bye, but now I'm stuck on this damn planet with a broken vortex manipulator!" He screamed into the night again and shot the trash can once more for good measure. He looked at his wrist band in disgust. "I guess I should have a look around and see where and when I ended up," he mused. John manipulated the wristband and took some readings. "All right then," he said aloud, "North America…California…Southern California…that's weird, some kind of disturbance blocking the exact location. Oh well, SoCal is good. Looks like late 2009. Shit, I only jumped 6 months." He aimed at where the trashcan was lying in a smoking heap. John tiled his head to the side, closed his eyes, and took a deep breath. He holstered his pistols and let out a short laugh of resignation. "Time to find a place to hang my saber while I figure out exactly where I am," he said to no one in particular. Captain John Hart, former Time Scout of the Time Agency swaggered out of the alley looking for a play to stay, a play to drink, and something to have sex with. He didn't care much with what order he found them in.
The next day Xander Harris left the job site early to go have lunch with his girlfriend, Anya. The work site wasn't too far away from the Magic Shop, so he had decided to walk. Like most days in Southern California, the sky was clear and beautiful, but the sun was hot. Xander took advantage of the shade the covered sidewalk offered and walked underneath it. He had picked up some sandwiches and was whistling the tune to "I'll Never Tell". Xander was happy. He had managed to spend almost an entire week without something trying to kill him or one of his friends. They had even managed to go for a week without one of them being turned into a monster, or even having a musical loving demon being summoned. Xander wondered if this was what it was like to be normal. He looked across the street and saw two co-eds from UC Sunnydale walk by in nothing but short shorts and bikini tops. "Haduhaduhadu," he stammered. Looking at the co-eds and not where he was going, Xander bumped into somebody. "Oh, I'm really sorry. You see I was just…oh, it's you," Xander said in an unfriendly tone.
"You should watch where you going, friend," John said coolly. He was new in town and didn't feel like falling off of the murder wagon just yet. He had done that stint in murder rehab after all.
Xander exhaled in mock disbelief and said, "We're not friends. We have never been friends. We will never BE friends." Xander took a step back and looked John up and down. "What is up with that outfit? Don't get me wrong, it's better than your usual black, but isn't kind of gaudy? Did you just leave a Sgt. Pepper convention or something?" he mocked.
John was stunned by this young man's audacity. Just a couple of years earlier and he would have sliced the ponce's head clean off his shoulders for a quarter of the insults he was throwing at him; but now that he was trying to reform himself. He couldn't kill the idiot out of anger. John paused for a moment of self reflection. Of course, just because he couldn't kill him, didn't mean he couldn't beat the holy crap out of him. "Who the helldo you think you are?" John asked.
"I'm the guy who's going to push you around and then laugh while you can't do a thing about it," Xander said. After all of the bad blood between Spike and him, Xander still enjoyed the inhibitor chip implanted in the vampire's head. "This is going to be so much fun," Xander thought. He shoved John into a wall. "Is Spike wearing cologne? It really smells good,"Xander mused for a split second.
A split second was all he got. John punched him in the left side of face, knocking him backwards into the street. Xander staggered backwards into the sunlight, rubbing his jaw. Xander smiled grimly. Spike had been captured by the military and had a computer chip implanted in his brain. Whenever he tried to cause physical harm to a human, the pain he experienced was sent back to him five fold. Xander's smile faded as he watched for the signs of the splitting headache Spike got every time he hurt a human. Instead, Spike was smiling at him, a smile that said he was having quite a good time. Xander took another step into the sunlight to give himself a safety zone. Terror rooted Xander to the spot as John walked into the sunlight and stood in front of him. The mid-day sun shone down upon him, glinting off of the gold bars on his uniform. Xander looked at both of John's hands and saw they were free of the Ring of Amara. "What…how…?" he stammered. John gave Xander an uppercut to his stomach with his left fist. Xander dropped to the ground, the wind knocked out of him.
"You do realize that you're incredibly pathetic, don't you?" John asked him, ruffling the other man's hair and pushing him the rest of the way down to the street. John didn't wait for a reply and instead swaggered off. Xander struggled to his feet and looked around. He wasn't able to tell which way "Spike" had gone. He picked up the bag containing his sandwiches and made his way cautiously to the Magic Shop.
The bell at the door tinkled, alerting Anya to another potential customer. Another customer meant potentially more of those interesting green rectangles you could exchange for goods and services. She took a deep breath and put on a bright, happy face. When she saw it was Xander, she let the breath out with a whoosh and her face fell, "Oh, it's just you," she said disappointed. She looked closer at her fiancé and concern took over, "Xander, you're hurt. What happened to your jaw?" Anya, the former vengeance demon, ran to Xander's side and took his hand. Xander squeezed her hand in thanks.
"I'll be ok, but we have major problems. Call the Scoobies for an emergency meeting. I'll explain then. Hopefully my jaw won't swell shut or my spleen won't rupture before everyone else gets here, but you know, it's been a boring week," Xander said. He walked to the back training room and grabbed an ice pack. One of the first things Tara and Willow had done when they had converted the back room to a training area was install a magical, never ending supply of ice for just such an occasion. Anya went to the phone and began calling the rest of the Scoobies.
John Hart wandered around Sunnydale in amazement. He had seen at least 10 different species of humanoid since he had arrived the night before. John checked his wrist strap yet again to make sure the date was correct and cross checked it against a newspaper he had found in a local restaurant. He mighthave skipped a few history classes when it came to early Earth history (he had been busy shagging the TA from the Martian dialects class at the time), but he was fairly certain there hadn't been a spaceport in Southern California during the 21st century. "So if this isn't a spaceport, where the hell did all these non-Earth types come from? And why doesn't anyone seem to give a damn that they're here?"he wondered.John watched a rather uptight, pale skinned human male cross the street to so he wouldn't have to share the sidewalk with a somewhat darker skinned human female. The same male then walked right past a huge, horned creature with slime dripping off of its fangs. The man did so without even raising an eyebrow. John pointed at the man and said to anyone who would listen, "Now that's evil. I don't know what the slime dripping thing is (and if it weren't for the smell, I might offer to give it a tumble), but that man is evil through and through."
An idea struck John. He changed the settings on his wrist strap again and slowly began walking in circles. He growled in frustration at the interference he was getting. Setting out on the main road, he walked to the city limits sign. As soon as John passed the sign, the interference on his wrist strap disappeared and he gasped in shock. "That's the biggest damn perception filter I've ever seen. It covers the whole bloody town. The readings are a bit strange, but there is no doubt about it, the people inside are having their minds screwed,"John thought. He measured the field and made adjustments to his wrist strap. His wrist strap worked slightly better as he stepped back inside the city limits. John decided to head for the city library to do some background work on what was creating the field. He knew it really was none of his business, but he thought, "WWJD – What Would Jack Do?"
Rupert Giles had turned his cell-phone off when he had entered the library. He was no longer a librarian, but he still loved the smell and feel of books. He decided to spend the afternoon in the town archives. "Always a chance I will come up with something that wants to start another apocalypse,"he thought wryly. Giles had his back turned to the door and didn't hear John come in.
When John had worked with Jack and they needed to take out a building or break in somewhere, they had always had tremendous luck by finding all kinds of useful information in the local archives. He had entered the room and found a man in his late 40s to early 50's bent over picking up a book. A book on a pile from the table fell and the man moved very quickly to catch it. John was impressed at how agile the man was, as well the muscle tone he displayed. He also had a cute ass. The brief profile he caught showed the man had rugged good looks. John picked up a book at random and walked over to the table to stand next to Giles.
Giles sensed motion to his right and looked out of the side of his eye. At first he didn't recognize the man standing next to him, the clothes were so different from what he normally wore. When he did recognize Spike, Giles took off his glasses and began to clean them with his shirt. Giles noticed a particularly pleasant smell coming from Spike. He tried to remember if he had ever seen Spike open a book at the Magic Shop let alone come to a library. "Why are you here? I don't recall ever seeing you interested in this library before," Giles said, ever the polite British citizen.
"I have to say that's a nice variant on the old classic 'I haven't seen you around here before' line," John said. He turned around and leaned back on the table. John tilted his head to the side and smiled at Giles.
"Can I help you in some way?" Giles said, annoyed at Spike's presence.
John stroked Giles arm from the elbow to the shoulder. "I can think of a whole number of things you can help me with, but we're over dressed for most of them," John said seductively. Giles' eyes widened in shock. He was so much in shock that he popped the lens out of glasses while cleaning them. "But…that will have to wait for later. I'm looking for anything on the early founding of this town," John said, his tone mixing disappointment with business like determination.
"Those records are kept in the basement, in the locked archives," Giles managed to say on autopilot.
"Thanks, hope to see you around," John said as he swaggered to the door marked "basement stairs". He looked over his shoulder and gave Giles a lewd wink, "Maybe then we can go into detail about how you can help me further." John kicked open the door and descended into the basement.
"Good Lord," Giles swore. He nearly ran out of the library on his way to the Magic Shop.
The Scoobies were starting to assemble inside the Magic Box. Willow and Tara had been the first to arrive. Dawn came in next, followed by her sister, Buffy. Giles was the last to arrive. Giles opened the door to his shop and looked at the group of young people assembled. "Oh good, you're all here. I was going to have Anya call you all," he said in an urgent tone.
"It helps when you have your cell-phone turned on," Buffy scolded him.
"What? Oh yes," Giles muttered as he pulled his out of his pocket and turned it on. "Well that doesn't matter now. We have a problem with Spike," he said.
"Tell me about it," Xander complained, still holding a bag of ice to his jaw.
"Oh my. Xander, what happened to you?" Giles inquired politely.
"Spike hit me," Xander complained. "What did he do to you?" he asked.
"Um…" Giles took his glasses out of pocket and tried to clean them, putting his finger through the missing lenses. He caught himself and put the broken pair back in his pocket. "I think Spike hit ON me," Giles said softly.
"Excuse me?" Buffy said in disbelief.
Dawn bit her lip and spun on her stool to face the shelves so she wouldn't have to look at Giles; not trusting herself to keep it together. A little snicker still escaped.
"What did he hit on you with?" Willow asked in concern for her mentor. Tara leaned over and whispered in her ear. Willow blushed as understanding blossomed in her mind. "Oh," was all she could say.
Xander laughed so hard his jaw felt like molten metal was being poured through it, but he didn't care. "You win, G-man. Your story is WAY better than mine," Xander giggled. Spike had the misfortune of choosing that moment to walk into the Magic Box.
Spike tossed off the smoking, wool blanket and walked to the counter. Xander shut up quickly, thinking the new Spike could easily beat the crap out of him for laughing at his change in sexuality. Giles made a beeline for the training room. "What's up with he who starches his underwear?" he asked.
"Nothing…nothing at all, Spike" Dawn said. She hopped off of the stool and hugged her friend, wanting to let him know she accepted him no matter.
Anya opened her mouth to dispute what Dawn had said about Giles, but Xander covered her mouth with his hand. He whispered in her ear, "We don't anger the vampire that beat up our boyfriends." Buffy just stood by the counter looking hurt.
"Don't mean to interrupt your little love fest over there…oh wait, yes I do. Can you get me these items?" Spike asked, putting a list down on the counter. Xander gave Anya one last warning look and took his hand away. Anya glared at Xander and went to the counter to grab the list. She looked it over.
"I can have these ready by tonight," Anya told Spike.
"Great. Well then," Spike said with a heavy sigh, "I guess I get to see all of your cheery faces again tonight." Spike finally gave Xander some notice and saw the bruise on his jaw. He pointed at the male Scooby. "You need to keep out of fights," he said helpfully.