Disclaimer: I own nothing. Buffy and Co. belong to Joss and Mutant Enemy and World of Warcraft belongs to Blizzard Entertainment.

Pairings: B/X, others as canon

Warnings: Well…it's not called World of Hugs 'n' Puppies…

Rating: FR18

Spoilers: Up to S5 Buffy and the Burning Crusade for WoW. Buffy dives into the Portal, but doesn't fall through to the ground…on Earth, anyway.

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Xander watched in horror as Buffy leapt from the tower, a thousand things raced through his head as she hit the rift, stretching from the ground to the top of the tower. He couldn't voice any of them, just stare. Dawn screamed, Willow and Tara looked on in equal parts horror and sorrow. Giles simply stared, still shaken by something Xander was sure had nothing to do with the fight.

Xander then decided he had to act. Grabbing an axe, he dashed at the portal, hearing Anya's scream as he leapt. He wasn't sure, but he thought he heard her say "Be careful." She knew, it seemed, before he did what he was going to do. Thinking back, she always seemed to know. Xander, when it came to Buffy, acted first and then thought of the consequences afterwards.

A bright flash of light and searing pain gripped him before blackness hit and he passed out. He didn't feel himself fall, or land on a body. He was busy being unconscious.

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Askia stared at the horizon and inhaled deeply as the wind came up the cliffside and buffeted her softly, bringing with it the scents of the valley below. She turned and walked back along the gravel path that was her route along the bluff and scanned the area for any sign of trouble. There rarely was trouble, but when it came, she was one of the ones that would meet it first. Her father often wondered why she chose not to follow the Path of Heroes and go out to see the world of Azeroth as her grandfather had, but she was content here. She never wanted to leave the valley, unlike her brother who was a year away from being of age to take the Rites.

She felt the hair on her neck stand on end and smelt the burning ozone before she saw the flashes of light some ten feet above the ground. She readied her weapon and saw her partner do the same. The air opened up, sending lightning crashing down in a circle and a thunderclap rocked the area, knocking both Askia and her partner to the ground. When they recovered, Askia saw the two bodies on the ground. They were beaten and bloody but still alive, but they were not moving.

"Call for the Guard Captain." Askia said, glancing up at her silent partner. He stood well over nine feet tall, muscles as thick as Yivoah trees lined his arms and legs. His horns, black as night and as sharp as a spear stood out from his brow, his nostrils flared as he snorted making the gold ring in his nose bounce, but he nodded. She knew how he felt about her and truth be told she felt something for him, but they both knew she could take care of herself.

Askia looked down at the two and shook her head. "I was hoping for a quiet night." She sighed.

Xander opened his eye slightly, blackness fighting him the whole time, and glanced up. He saw the massive demon nod and move away, leaving the smaller one there. He saw the axe it carried and knew then that he was in trouble. He also felt Buffy below him, still breathing, and knew that, somehow, he would be alright. Blackness closed in again. "Buffy…" he murmured once before slipping into sweet unconsciousness once more.

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Buffy felt the whole world. It was loud, heavy, and the smell was…actually, the smell was not bad at all. It was sweet, clean and fresh. She opened one eye because she was sure that the smell was nowhere in California. She looked up at the massive wooden beams and walls that surrounded her and was in awe. The place was huge, and the bed she was in, albeit she was chained hand and foot, was comfortable. She was warm and she was safe. Buffy furrowed her brow. She was also naked. She grabbed the blanket over her around herself a little tighter.

Looking over the room she noticed another bed, with another small figure in it. Well, the figure wasn't small, but it looked like it in the huge bed. It was also chained hand and foot. The man, Buffy decided it was male and at least humanoid from the look of its hands and feet, had not fared as well as she had. While she was merely chained, his shackles had cut deeply into his wrists and ankles. They were bandaged and the dressings were tight, but they were obviously wounds made from the restraints.

Buffy tested the bindings and decided they were very well made. She might be able to break them eventually, but these weren't exactly handcuffs. They were thick, solid iron shackles and they were very secure. The figure in the bed across the room moved and Buffy felt her breath catch. She recognized that groan.

"Xander." Buffy called out, looking at the door, more specifically the size of the door and what would need a door that big, and lowered her voice. "Xander, can you hear me?" she whispered sharply.

The figure groaned again and a sharp yelp of pain echoed as Xander yanked on his chains. "Ouch." She heard him say. "Buff?"

Buffy smiled. "I'm here. I'll get you loose in a sec." she looked at her restraints, narrowing her gaze. She focused on the cuff around her right wrist and clenched her fist. She didn't jerk, knowing that was the surest way to an injury. Instead, she applied pressure. She pulled steadily, moving against the backboard and putting her shoulder into it. The metal protested, but held. She took a deep breath and tried again, the metal groaning under the pressure she was exerting. She knew she wasn't going to break the metal, though, and stopped. She surveyed her options and grinned. Pulling her covers down a little to let her arm loose, she reached forward and made a fist, taking a deep breath and sparing a second to glance at the door. With a quick strike, she jabbed her elbow back as hard as she could with the small leeway she was given. She aimed the strike for the joint between the top of the board and the rail the chain was on. A snap echoed through the room and Buffy cried out.

"Buff? You loose?" Xander asked, looking up now.

Buffy held her arm and it felt numb. Her elbow was not numb, however. She was almost sure it was broken. The wood was whole and remained secure. "No…sorry…" she started to say when the doorknob rattled.

A demon easily eleven feet tall entered, horns sprouting forward as it entered. It was wearing rough hewn leather clothes decorated with various beads and feathers. What stopped Buffy from panicking was the look in its eyes. They were clear blue, sparkling and…very not evil. She couldn't tell what, exactly, made her think that but she could tell, she was sure of it as she was of anything, that this creature was NOT evil.

Xander wasn't as convinced. "Stay away! I mean it!" he began to thrash in his bed. His bindings were beginning to dig into him again and he ignored them.

"Xander, calm down!" Buffy said quickly. "I don't think it will hurt us." She said, looking at the creature as it stared down at her.

Xander calmed, keeping a wary eye on the massive form. "You sure?" he asked.

Buffy looked at the creature, demon was reserved for evil things after all, and nodded. "Pretty sure, yeah." She said.

Xander nodded. "Ok then." He said softly. "But he's pretty big, and we are in chains." He said softly as he shifted, trying to sit up.

"I know." Buffy said.

"And we are kinda trapped…" he added.

"I know." Buffy said again.

"And I'm naked…" he said suddenly, slouching back down. "Are you naked too?" he asked, looking back over at her and sitting back up.

"Xander, focus." Buffy growled.

Xander grinned. "I'm trying to…" he mumbled.

"Xander!" Buffy snapped, pulling the blanket further up.

Xander only grinned.

The huge creature looked between the two and snorted, snapping their attention back to him. He reached into a pack at his side and pulled a small statue out, looking it over and tossing it at the ground, sticking it into the dirt floor. The top of the statue began to glow as a white mist slowly spread around it and pulsated with light.

The creature nodded once and looked at Buffy. "Can you understand me now?"

Buffy opened her eyes in shock. She saw his lips moving and the words formed in her mind. She nodded.

The creature nodded once and turned to Xander. "And you?"

Xander nodded as well.

The creature nodded again. "I am Kintar Suntoucher. I must ask you…what are you doing here?" he asked. "How did you manage to teleport to Thunder Bluff?"

Buffy looked at Xander and he stared back. "I don't think we're in Kansas anymore." Xander mumbled. Buffy nodded in agreement.

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Cairne Bloodhoof stood facing the mountains, eyes closed, and communed with the world of the spirits. He was a Tauren Chieftain, the Grand Chief actually, and he had a dilemma to deal with. Strangers, humans, had teleported to Thunder Bluff. At first the Tauren believed it was an attack, but there were only two of them and they were in no shape to fight when the portal closed. Advisors had warned against letting them live and, as usual, Cairne was meditating on the thought. They did not speak common, the tongue the Alliance used, and they felt…different, to him.
"Great Chief. They have awakened." The guard spoke reverently when they talked to him. Cairne knew it was not out of fear or even worship, but out of respect and even love. He had led his people to their new home, saving them from the centaurs that had nearly wiped them out and uniting the tribes. He found an ally in the orcs in general and in their Warchief Thrall in particular and their help was essential in defeating the marauding centaurs that rose against the Tauren. The favor was returned when Cairne pledged the Tauren to the cause of the Horde and Thrall.

Cairne nodded once. "Bring them." His voice rumbled deeply.

The guard nodded once and turned to retrieve the humans.

Cairne opened his eyes and reached out to take the shaft of his Runespear. Normally, he would heft his mace, but he felt that the spear would be more…formal somehow. He stood ready, patient and still contemplating the facts that he knew when the tent flap opened.

Buffy looked inside and then turned back to Xander. She nodded once and entered the lodge. The massive creature that dominated the center of the room dwarfed all the others she had seen since their arrival. He carried a spear that looked like someone strapped a point to a tree and called it a weapon. She swallowed once and met the creatures gaze. In his eyes, she noticed something. Not fear, not doubt, but absolute certainty that this was a creature of great honor and he could be trusted. His eyes conveyed a deep wisdom and the way he looked at her, she felt as if she were an infant still and he was a learned guide.

Cairne studied the two humans as they entered. They were not from Stormwind, he could tell that much right away. Their dress, their postures, all conveyed nothing like the humans from that kingdom. He found himself deeper in the mystery.

Xander swallowed hard and tried not to be intimidated by the ten and a half foot minotaur in front of him. He really tried, but he just couldn't help it. The guy was huge, and the spear…Xander glanced at Buffy and was shocked by the small grin on her face. "Uh…Buff?" he nudged Buffy. "What's with the happy?"

Buffy never broke eye contact with Cairne. "We're safe here." She said softly. "It's gonna be ok."

"I wish I shared your belief, small one. "Cairne spoke softly, his cavernous voice carrying across the room. "I am still unsure that you are not a threat."

Xander looked at his chained hands and feet and then glanced at Cairne's spear and then at Cairne himself. "I don't think we are gonna be much of a problem for ya."

Cairne smiled. "Perhaps." He said. "I know you are not from Stormwind, but there are numerous human settlements across Azeroth. You could be from any of them."

"Azeroth?" Buffy spoke quickly. "Is that where we are?"

Cairne nodded. "You claim that you are not from Azeroth?"

Buffy nodded. "We're not. There was…there was an accident. A portal opened and we fell into it."

Cairne glanced at Kintar, the Shaman that came in with the pair. Kintar nodded once. "I see." He said softly. "This does bear further investigation. There is much to contemplate." Cairne turned and gazed into the fire.

"Come, young ones." Kintar said to Buffy and Xander, leading them from the room.

Buffy glanced at Cairne as they moved. "I can get us out of here anytime I want." She said quickly.

Cairne glanced at her but did not reply.

"Just saying…but I am willing to trust you won't hurt us." Buffy said. "That changes…and we're gone."

Cairne stared back into the fire.

The walk across the Rise was short, Buffy and Xander left in the room. They were no longer shackled to the beds, but they were still bound, hands and feet and there were guards posted at every entrance and exit.

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Cairne looked at the small message in his hands and sighed. It had been to long since he had seen his old friend, and it always seemed to be during a crisis. Someday, Cairne vowed, we will be able to simply sit across a fire and enjoy the company of their friendship without talk of wars and battles to be fought.

"Take this to my old friend." Cairne said, holding out the message. The Tauren rider nodded and secured the parchment in his satchel. "Be swift, I sense an urgency in the air."

The messenger turned and headed for Thunder Bluff's Flight Master.

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Cairne stared at the letter in his hands and nodded. He knew the Orc Warchief was a warrior, all orcs were warriors. It was their birthright. He also knew Thrall to be an honorable and even tempered Orc. He had to be to lead the Horde through some of the trials they were facing now. The presence of the Fel Horde had to be a constant shade on the Warchief's mind. So he trusted the Orc's words and he was surprised by what was written by Lady Sylvanas as well.

"Bring them." Cairne said to one of the guards.

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Buffy and Xander sat, eating the meal that was laid out in front of them. Cheese, roast meats and cool milk were common fare for the Tauren people, not Demons Xander had to agree. Buffy and Xander were learning a lot. It had been almost three months since they had been dropped here and so far, they were unharmed…mostly.

Flashback-2 months ago

Buffy and Xander heard the commotion and rushed to the door. They didn't venture beyond the guards side though. They had just gotten their shackles removed and the small measures of freedom granted to them. They were not really going to try pressing that. They saw fighting across the rise, men and…well, shorter men…were attacking and the guards were losing. Some of the Horde's finest heroes were there as well, making short work of the humans that were advancing.

One of the humans turned and saw them, his jaw dropping open. He paid for the distraction with a shot to his leg by one of the gathered Horde. He dropped, clutching his leg and screaming in pain. The rest of the attack, however, was swift and the remaining humans rushed passed the guards.

"Come on…They're headed for Elder Rise." Buffy said, glancing at the guard. He snorted once, anger clear on his face, and rushed off towards the flight spire.

"They are assaulting Cairne! We must hurry!" the guard said, slapping a crude sword into Buffy's hand. It was not the weapon of a Tauren, they tended more toward large axes and maces. But Thunder Bluff had many traders, and the members of the Horde were numerous. The sword she wielded now came from their allies in Silvermoon.

The guard held a sword out to Xander, but he just shook his head, staring at a large mace at the Tauren shop. The guard smiled and grabbed the weapon, passing it to Xander with a knowing grin.

Buffy reached the rise right after the guard and surveying the scene. It was focused chaos. The melee was in front of Cairne's hut and seemed to be focused there. There were several that stayed back, launching blasts of fire, ice, energy bolts of varying make, into the melee. The Tauren Chieften was not going down easy, however. Buffy watched in awe as he stepped forward with his mace and swung. Three of the melee combatants went soaring over their heads and past the edge of the high cliffs, plunging down into the valley below. The edge was over sixty yards from Cairne's position.

The entire battle took about four minutes, well over 35 members of this…Alliance…were attacking. Buffy felt that the casters were the biggest threat and went after them first, moving through the fringes with ease. She attacked to disable and that was her mistake. The members she faced did not. She felt the explosion hit her in the back and smelled the charred flesh. She didn't feel the pain, however, and that scared her the most. She turned, staring at the small creature. He wasn't human, but was humanoid. He was also only two feet tall. He stared at her through yellow goggles, a wicked grin on his face. She had seen that grin before on the faces of some of the vamps she had faced…Angelus, for one. He was enjoying the carnage. Buffy gritted her teeth and stood. The small being raised a hand and several bolts erupted from it, slamming unerringly into her. She fell, her eyes empty and her body starting to cool.

Xander saw Buffy fall and ran to her side, dropping down and staring at her. He felt sorrow begin to swallow him and then felt a warm sensation washing over his soul. He felt lifted, the sadness giving way to light and he knew that Buffy would be alright. He focused on the diminutive creature that had blasted her and raised his mace. He stood and ran at the creature, slamming the head down on the small creatures shoulder. Though he wore cloth robes, Xander knew that the blow he landed was insignificant. The creature smiled and raised a hand, fire glowing through the fingers and whipped his wrist at Xander. Instead of pain, Xander felt…nothing.

The small creature narrowed his gaze and spit on the ground. He began to move his hands in another series of intricate gestures. Xander could see the blue aura forming around the small mans fingers and saw the ice lance out, and then slam into something surrounding him. Again, he felt no pain. It was then that Xander noticed the glowing bubble around him. The spells, he assumed that was all they could be, were being stopped by the shield around him. He also noticed the shield sputter and then wink out. The small mage smiled and began twisting his hands in an intricate pattern. Fire sputtered between his fingertips and he launched his hands outward, a massive ball of flame slamming into Xander. He felt searing pain and was knocked back. A wet, charred hole in the center of his chest smoked and Xander looked frantically for any sign of help as the mage walked over to him. He said something that Xander could not understand and stabbed a wicked looking dagger into Xanders chest. Then, Xander felt nothing.