Disclaimer: 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer', it's characters and it's stories do not in any way belong to me, nor do I seek or am I making any monetary profit from this fanfiction. It is © Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, the WB, plus various other people and business entities. So there.
Notes: Basically, this one is going to be about Xander when he gets turned. 'Big whoop!', I hear from the peanut gallery, 'Plenty of those out there.' True enough, but I wanna play in this sandbox for a while. This one's going to start in Season-3 during the episode 'Enemies', when Faith and the Mayor were trying to bring forth Angelus again. During the episode, everyone's favourite butt-monkey happens across 'Angelus' & Faith. He then gets punched out and left on the side of the road. Not a good idea in Sunnydale. I'm just wondering, what if something found him?
The end of the episode will play out a little differently than in the series because of the above facts.
PROLOGUE:- That's gonna leave a mark.
Xander was wandering around downtown Sunnydale, muttering to himself about the way Cordelia Chase had been fawning over the new, somewhat older Watcher earlier in the school library. While it had been kinda fun to watch Wesley Wyndam-Pryce squirm vigorously as Xander's Ex rather openly flirted with him, deep down the teen felt that a part of her actions were squarely directed at him.
'Way to try and make me jealous, Cordy. And she claimed to be the mature one in our relationship!' He snorted with sad amusement. 'In any case, she's gonna have to try a lot harder to get under my skin. If I can put up with being passed over in favour of the undead in the boyfriend stakes, I can live with my Ex making goo-goo eyes at the wannabe Watcher!' He fumed to himself.
Coming around the corner, he spotted Angel and Faith walking together determinedly. Opening his mouth to ask whether they had seen Buffy recently, he barely saw the haymaker that knocked him unconscious. The last thing that ran through his mind before the darkness swamped him was a rather unkindly, 'I knew he was evil!'.
Later on back at the library, after Faith had managed to get away from both Buffy and Angel following the big reveal over the way they had played her, the Scoobies were sitting around the table in the centre of the foyer. Giles had just finished explaining to them about how the demon that was supposed to remove Angel's soul had come to him earlier to see whether this information was enough to balance the debt between them.
"So, what do we do now?" Willow asked nervously.
"Well, first of all the council will have to be informed that we have a rogue slayer on our hands, of course." Giles nodded in the direction of Wesley, acknowledging his earlier outburst about calling the Watchers Council. "Next comes the arduous task of discovering more about the Ascension. Seeing as how our only real lead is now in the hands of the Mayor, we will have to seek alternative avenues for our answers." He said as he removed his glasses to give them a fretful cleaning.
"Y'know, I'm surprised donut boy isn't around." Cordelia announced suddenly. "I'm sure he would've been all over the apparent return of Angelus with the 'I told you so's'."
"What do you mean?" Willow asks. "He went looking for Angel earlier, to see if he knew where Buffy was." The redhead points at Buffy, confused. "Actually, where is he? We haven't heard from him since he left."
'Um, maybe he went home?" Buffy says weakly.
"Puh-lease! With his precious Buffy missing in action? I'm surprised we can't hear him gnashing his teeth in frustration from wherever he is right now to here over not being able to find you!" Cordelia snorts.
Buffy was a little lost at that. "Um, should we call his home, to see if he's there?"
"NO!" Came the shout from both Willow and Cordelia. Everyone in the room looked at them in surprise, mostly over the fact that they seemed to be agreeing with each other on something.
Recovering, Cordelia gestured to Willow to give the explanation.
"He, ah, he doesn't have a separate phone line to his room." She stated, as if that explained everything.
It didn't. "So?" Wesley enquired.
"So, there's a good chance you'd get his…parents I s'pose you'd call them, if you rang." Cordelia continued, remembering the one and only time she had ever made the mistake of ringing the Harris residence. After that conversation, she had never directly made fun of his home life again. And actually felt ashamed that she had ever done so in the past. "You're better off sneaking around and knocking on his window to see if the doofus is there." She finished in a kinder tone than anyone in the room could remember her using since she and Oz had caught Xander kissing Willow.
Buffy came out of her introspective mood a little more at the thought that her Xander-shaped friend might be missing. "Giles, can I use your phone?" She asked hypothetically as she headed for his office without waiting for a reply.
"Sure." He replied with a curious expression. "Who are you calling at this hour?"
"Angel." She threw over her shoulder. "He might have spotted Xander while he was…out…tonight. With Faith."
"Oohh. Trouble in paradise?" Cordelia murmured quietly after the slayer had safely exited the room.
Not quietly enough. "Keep you're opinions to yourself, Cordelia." Willow stated firmly. Between knowing a part of what was bothering Buffy over Angel, and a growing sense that her oldest friend might be in trouble, she was in no mood for Cordelia's patented snide remarks right now.
Angel was brooding.
Anyone at all in the slightest way familiar with the ensouled vampire would snort at that observation and enquire, 'So, what else is new?'
However, at this particular time, he was pondering whether he was doing more harm to Buffy by staying in town than good. Perhaps it was time he left and pursued his redemption elsewhere.
It was not a decision he wanted to make lightly. But, considering the look his former lover had given him before she had left with Giles to explain their plan to the others, he knew he was in for a rough time when Buffy returned. His actions with Faith while pretending to be Angelus had not gone over well with the young Slayer.
And when a familiar demon appeared suddenly in the room with him, dressed like a seventies pimp and looking angrier than he could ever recall, Angel knew that his night was about to get infinitely more complicated. "Whistler?"
"Angel." The balance demon replied evenly, his familiar Brooklyn accent almost nonexistent. "You know what I am, right? What I do."
"Yeah. You're a messenger of the Powers-That-Be. A balance demon." Angel shrugged, wondering where this conversation was going.
"Good." The demon said as he walked closer. "Then you'll get why I did this without getting too upset." Before Angel could ask the obvious question, Whistler stepped in close and landed a savage uppercut squarely on the vampire's chin.
"WHULF" Angel exclaimed when he finally landed on the other side of the room. Immediately, he was on his feet and stalking towards his attacker. "What was that for?" He demanded.
"Balance." The demon answered simply, unperturbed by the fury he was currently face to face with.
"What? What are you talking about? I haven't…" Angels rage subsided as he remembered a brief incident earlier in the night.
"Uh-huh. Lights going on up there somewhere, ratboy?" Whistler asked sarcastically as he tapped Angel's forehead roughly. "Something occurring to you?"
"Bingo!" The other man snorted. "That kid was a part of the plan for this town, y'know. For the witch, and the Watcher. But mostly for the Slayer. He was her White Knight." Angel cringed slightly at that, recalling some of his time as Angelus. Whistler ignored him and continued speaking, "The one who was supposed to lift her up when she was down, and keep her on the path when she strayed. Regardless of the cost, he was always supposed to be there for her. Always…" Whistler stopped talking and waited.
"Wait a minute. What do you mean, 'was'." Angel started getting a bad feeling in his undead stomach.
"Lemme ask you a question about tonight." The demon answered the query with one of his own. "When you saw the kid tonight, what did you do?"
"I, uh, I punched him out." Angel replied sheepishly, struggling to conceal the childish enjoyment he had gotten out of the act. "But only to reinforce to Faith that I was evil again. It was part of a plan." He almost whined.
"Uh-huh." Whistler nodded. "So, you punched the lights out of someone who is well known to the nightlife of this town as a good friend and ally of the slayer, and left him on the side of the road, unconscious, to fend for himself."
"Uh, yeah." Angel looked confused for a minute, before what little colour was in his face drained away completely. "Oh no…" He whispered.
"Oh yes." Whistler contradicted him sadly. "My sources tell me that he was found and turned less than ten minutes after you knocked him out. Your stupid little stunt just cost an agent of the light his life, and cut the heart out of that little group of fighters you've been hanging around with for the past few years."
The balance demon closed the distance between them and patted Angel on the shoulder.
As Whistler stepped back into the shadows and disappeared, the phone in Angel's bedroom started ringing.
Notes: Okay, you readers with a better memory than me will probably remember that Xander actually turned up later at the Library to tell the others that Angelus was back and spit out a couple of 'I Told You So's'.
After going over the episode in question, I figured that it doesn't actually change the course of the story if he failed to show. At all, really. I mean, all he did was rock up, tell them, and they all headed off to Angel's mansion just in time to see Faith flee out the back door. I figure that if he didn't show up, all that would have happened was that Buffy returned to the Library alone to inform the others about 'The Great Deception' then, instead of on the walk back. The rest of them just lived in ignorance a little longer.
Anyway, that's my story, an' I'm sticking to it! Next Chapter will be about what happens next. See ya then! T