Don walked Xander into the house that night, letting him free of the handcuffs. "No more poker," he ordered. He looked at Harry. "Don't let him teach you how to play poker. Please? He drives us nuts." He walked back to their bedroom to change. It had been a long day with the chief of police getting shot. He came out in more casual clothes, finding Xander sulking with pudding that Sam had gotten him. "Thanks, guys." He stared at his mate. "Why didn't you tell us about this contract too?"
"I thought I had told Horatio when I told him about his."
"If you think you did, I can't be mad." He took a kiss. "Where's the kid?"
"In front of the tv, staring in oddness at the animal channel," Dean told him.
"What did you want to do for dinner?" Sam asked. "I can help cook and Harry wanted to help too."
"Chinese," Xander said bluntly. "Fu owes me about three hundred on credit at the moment."
Don rolled his eyes but called for him. "Fu, it's Don Flack for Xander. He said he's got a credit with you and he's too pouty to cook tonight. Us three, Dean, Sam, and his new student Harry. Yeah, that kid's his new student." He looked at Dean. "No, Dean looks starved. Use up the rest of the credit for him. Put a few spicy things in too if you can. I'm in the mood ta belch. Thanks, Fu." He hung up and hugged his mate. "There, all settled." He walked off to get to know Harry better. "Hey, kid."
"Oh, Don." He sat up.
Don waved him back down. "We all lounge around. That's why Xander bought such a big couch set. It's perfect for cuddling or slouching while you watch tv." He looked at the channel, grimacing. "Animal Cops. Eww. Poor animals."
"They were showing some down here."
"I've worked them with them once. Someone dead's animals were nibbling because they were starved." Harry shuddered. "It happens. He had an alligator for a pet too. It ate one of his dogs." He settled in. "Nothing else on?"
"Not that I recognized. I had no idea how to do more than change the channels but the few I tried I didn't recognize anything."
"Hmm." Don took the remote, showing him the button. "That gets you into the programming menu, tells you what's on." He did that and let Harry see, watching as he suddenly smiled. "We can watch that." He turned it to that channel, watching the boy relax. "It's all good, kiddo. We've all been here. Xander got me with the herbs too. Not as badly as he got, but I got some. Horatio got some too." Harry looked at him. "We understand." He stared at him. "New glasses okay?"
"I'm having a bit of an adjustment headache but they happen." He shrugged.
"We have tylenol, Harry. No one's gotta suffer around here."
"I wasn't going to browse through the medicine cabinet."
"Uh-huh. Hey, Dean, can you get Harry some tylenol for his headache? His new glasses are giving him one."
"Sure." He brought out a can of soda and a few pills. "There you go, kiddo." He sat down then checked. "Forgot he put a table there." He shifted over to the couch and sat down again. "So, how's Miami been?"
"Not bad," Don admitted. "Bit busy with spring break."
"We're taking Harry down to watch the festivities tomorrow," Sam said as he joined them. He handed Dean a soda then sat himself down with his own. "It'll be relaxing watching the college kids play."
"With a good lesson in why you don't let yourself get that drunk," Dean added.
Don smirked at him. "You're a good big brother, Dean."
"The best," he quipped back with an evil smirk. "If we had been down here when Sammy got that lecture we could've proven it to him instead of just giving him some and letting him have God's own hangover the next morning."
"Didn't he create kangaroos and platypuses during that?" Xander asked, leaning into the room. "Fu said you're mean to make his people cook that much food."
"Uh-huh. Your poker winnings show up already?" he taunted with a smirk.
"Nope." He beamed. "Wyatt's been helping me take it to the bank or hide it at Steve's." He disappeared into the kitchen again.
"His poker playing is a pain in my ass," Don complained. "Don't learn that bad habit off him, Harry. It'll annoy your future lovers when you get bored and decide to play poker with thugs."
"Didn't like that he reduced the money in the drug dealer pipeline by about a third?" Sam teased.
"Well, yeah, until the General decided to prove he had a set and came after him." He shifted to put his feet up. "Then we find out he knows and likes the gang that had a contract out on the lab. That he knew more about the underground in Miami than some of the officers over that area do. Plus that they think he's scary."
"He is scary when he wants to be," Sam pointed out.
"Usually when his hair's been tampered with," Don shot back.
"Just for that, you're sleeping on your own tonight," Xander called. "Have fun on the couch, Don."
"Like that'll happen," he called back. Danny stomped in. "Hey. Late again?"
"No, we're done for the night." He stared at Xander. "No more poker. Thugs or not. No more poker, no more baccarat. No more cards. At all unless it's to save our asses."
"Well, I did play a game recently with two guys who wanted to take the contract out on the lab, but they're now too poor to do that and I told Ryan," he said when Danny opened his mouth. Danny snapped his mouth shut and went to call Ryan. Xander grinned, bouncing outside. He needed to go play. Maybe he should go visiting.
"Don't you dare!" Dean yelled. "You don't have any weapons on you!"
"Shoot." He pouted until the car pulled in. "Hi, Wyatt."
"It took them six months?"
"Yeah. Spring break overtime," he said with a smirk. He helped him carry bags inside, then tipped him from his wallet. Wyatt looked at it then at him. He looked at it in the light. "Huh. The demon who did it last time put back funny money." It faded and all new bills appeared. "They're very sorry." He handed it over.
"Not an issue. How many of them want you now?"
"I'm guessing someone didn't get the point earlier when I destroyed a whole clan." He smiled sweetly at him, making him shudder. "I should go fix that."
Ares, God of War, appeared, shaking his head. "It's fixed, Xander. I promise. The new higher one who wants you beat all the others who wanted you earlier." He patted him on the head. "No more poker."
Xander pouted. "But I'm *bored*!"
"I don't care. No more poker for a while."
"How long is a while?" he asked.
Ares shrugged. "The next time they get sucked into overtime?" He disappeared.
Xander beamed at Wyatt. "That'll probably be this summer when the heat makes people cranky and kill. So see you about June?"
"I'll let Fu know," he said dryly. He walked back to his car shaking his head. Xander was very original at times. A bit too much to take without drinking but very original. He drove back to the shop, getting out and finding his boss waiting on him. "His god showed up and said he can't come back to play until they're sucked into overtime again. He said he'll see us in June."
Fu smirked. "He does owe that small debt."
"I'm pretty sure he paid it off earlier, boss. Steve was out with him. Oh, and the demon network was trying to steal his wallet again. Put back funny money for a bit until it got fixed." He smirked. "You might check with them but I'm fairly certain he put money down in front of them when he sat down today."
"Hmm." He went to check that. It wasn't in the debt books so it had to be updated.
Wyatt went to get a drink. He needed a drink. He *really* needed a drink. Especially since Xander's other patron saint was being bored in the back room too. He brought him a soda and went back to his actual job, assistant debt book keeper.
Xander walked all the bags into the living room. "Here we go."
Don stared then at him. "That's a lot of food."
"You said to cancel out my credit." He shrugged, digging in to find what he wanted. "Harry, want spicier or noodles?"
"I'll try a bit of everything. I've never had chinese food before." He got a plate and got a bit out of the open cartons before the others stole them. Dean and Sam ended up nearly wrestling over something but Xander pulled out another carton. Danny took his to the office to call around about that contract on the lab. Don settled back with his beef and broccoli. Xander did what Harry did, even daring to steal food from Dean's carton before he inhaled it all. Then they settled in to watch some tv and relax for the night.
Danny came out to get more food. "Ryan said the contract on the lab got canceled when the Mala Noches went down."
"Then why does one of the European syndicate people want you guys out of a job?" he asked, taking a bite.
Danny groaned, going to tell them that.
"We had foreign not-thugs at the poker games?" Sam teased.
"A few who're now retired down here." He smirked. "One was an Interpol inspector who retired. Fu thinks he's even odder than I am."
Don shook his head. "Maybe we'll talk to him then." Xander shrugged. "Any idea where he is?"
"Hmm." He got up and went to tell Danny that. They ended up calling Wyatt to find out where on Forrest street but that was normal with the poker buddy system. Wyatt didn't really like the guy with the way he called him a 'poser foreign cop' but oh well.
Xander grinned at Dean. "They tried it again. Ares said the new higher up who wants me beat all the lower ones into submission."
"Interesting. When can we go beat this higher one?" he asked.
"No clue. I haven't seen firm evidence on who it is yet." He shrugged and ate some more. "Harry, there's more of the spicy stuff in the second bag from the left." Harry got down to dig some out for himself. Sam took the rest. He was eating out of the carton. Danny and Don left to talk to the new poker buddy. Xander just grinned. Dean smirked back. "I'm still bored."
"We can go house stuff shopping tomorrow," Sam offered.
"Harry can't do a full day of shopping like you guys did. They herbed him pretty badly."
Sam raised an eyebrow. "Oh, really?"
"Someone had the house elves wash his clothes in them."
Sam growled. "Maybe we should have a talk with them?"
"I told the nurse that he was fine when he finally woke up," Xander promised. "She said to bring him back by the holidays at the latest. So we can do that convention to get him back to his own world since it's taking place there."
"That'd be cool," Dean decided. "Seeing the other sexual demons at play?" Sam glared at him. "I'm not going to pick one up! Geez! I have some taste, Sammy."
"Uh-huh. The first time the sirens start to suck on you I get to kill them all, right?"
"If you want," he said dryly.
"Guys, convention rules apply," Xander said patiently. "We'd have be peaceful there."
Harry grinned. "It can't be that bad."
"This means he gets to come to Vegas with us," Sam pointed out.
"Ooooh, he does," Xander said, getting that wickedly evil look again.
"Uh-oh," Dean muttered.
Sam winced. "We'll help you plan, Xander."
"I can plan very well," he pouted.
"Harry's never been to Las Vegas before and it's his first convention. Go easy on him," Dean ordered.
"Of course!" He grinned at Harry. "Conventions are tons of fun, Harry. So's the city we're going to." Harry nodded slowly. "Don't worry, you'll like it." He called Ray. "I need to add Harry as coming with us. Oh, and the boys showed up." He hung up. "They're having dinner."
The phone rang and Sam got it this time. "Xander's house." He smiled. "Hi, Adam. Yes we are. No, Dean got stolen and they gave him back to Xander. Harry is coming with us. We can do that. Level eight all the times we tested him during the time we took in that subrealm to train him." He smirked. "Yup. No, Ares said he can't play poker again until they go back into more overtime."
"June," Xander said with a nod.
"He said June. Dinner. Xander had a credit at Fu's so Don ordered. Harry's never had chinese. He's sampling. Cool with us. We'll be here. Probably." He hung up. "They'll be over after they do dishes and stuff." He dug in again. Xander too.
Dean grinned at Harry. "That'll make it official here so you can go to the convention."
"Should I worry about stuff like my magic?"
"No one notices anything in Vegas, Harry. If they did, they'd think you were a street performer and clap."
"Oh, okay then."
"The travel channel usually has stuff on Vegas," Sam pointed out. Xander got into the programs guide, finding one and putting up a reminder for them. Then it went back to the show they were watching. Harry looked uneasy but it'd be fine. They were sure Xander could make the poor kid relax.
The phone rang a few hours later and Xander giggled when he heard the voice coming out of the speaker. "Xander," Tony DiNozzo's voice said on the other side. "The furry ones who liked your hair are very sorry they took you that way. They were amazed that we only have hair on our heads and not a lot of fur other places," he said dryly. "They said if you were very insulted they'd pay a reparation for you."
"I'd like some of their conditioner. It did really good in my hair but I wasn't insulted," Xander promised with a grin at the speaker phone. "They were very nice, polite people who didn't want to try to keep me for sex. It was kinda nice to have my hair brushed all the time."
"I'll let them know that. How did you get up to that mall?"
"Demon bazaar," Dean said.
"Oh, hey, guys. Which one?"
"The one on Pervada."
"I'll make note of that. Did you have any credits left from shopping?"
"Ten or twelve. They didn't like our gemstones."
"They can be picky," Tony agreed dryly. "Send those to me?"
"I can't go back?" he pouted. "Harry could use more clothes and they did have that nice hair people. They worshiped having good hair. Their main goddess is a goddess of good hair."
Tony coughed. "Xander, they weren't demons."
"I remember that road trip the same as you do, Tony. I figured that out," he said dryly. "They still had neat stuff."
"We'll see. Warn me first if you can. Please?"
"Sure. Did you guys need anything? We're going to see you at the convention, right?"
"Probably. Oh, the list of Feds coming is smaller this time since Vegas is hyped to protect us."
"They remember the orgy," he said dryly. "There might be a few unofficial ones there."
"Tell Ian and Don if they show up we can play matchstick poker again. Since Ares said I can't play poker down here until I'm bored from them doing more overtime again."
"Again?" he demanded.
"It's spring break," Sam reminded him.
Tony shuddered, they could hear it. "I remember mine. Kinda." He sounded like he was smiling. Then yelped. "Talking to Xander, boss. Like that Air Force guy said to." He cleared his throat. "Did you buy any presents? They'd like to check them."
"Clothes for us. Hair cut for Harry and trim for me. Some shampoo stuff. Some oil for my hair because they like the wet look. Nothing that might piss anyone off or be too obvious."
"Uh-huh. Can we check it out?"
"Sure, come down for the weekend. Meet the new student Harry." He grinned at him then at the phone again. "Harry's a nice guy but he's your level."
"That's cool. I can do that this weekend. Boss, gotta go check what Xander bought this time. Yes, I'm taking Greg." He sighed. "Gibbs is being paranoid."
"Is that because there's a buy order on you guys again?" Xander asked.
"How did you hear about that?" he asked, sounding very patient.
"He was playing non-thug poker," Sam said. "Found one on the chief down here that got shot today, one on Horatio. One on the lab." He finished his current carton off food. Dean got a third one. Harry gave him an awed look. "He's always been a bottomless pit."
"Wow. I've never eaten that much."
"You need to eat more. You're still too skinny and Alexx will fuss you into a coma again," Xander warned. Tony cackled. "She will."
"She might, yeah. Greg said she fussed over his weight too, kid."
"Good," Tony agreed. "That means you're only a few years younger than Xander." He was happier. "We'll see you this weekend. Don't worry about picking us up since we'll be flying standby. We'll call when we land to make sure you're home. Behave, Xander." He hung up.
"Tony's a Fed," Dean told Harry. "His boyfriend used to be the group's chemist and Xander's trouble buddy for a bit. Now they're both NCIS. Tony teaches self-defense to the group at large during conventions."
"You two could help with that if you wanted," Xander reminded him.
"We might," Dean agreed. Sam grinned and nodded. "If you wear him out shopping this time."
Xander stuck his tongue out. "I'm not that bad."
Sam snorted. "Please! You wore us out plenty of times, Xander."
"It built your stamina," he said with a smirk. "Just like it will Harry's."
"If you say so," Dean told him. "If he drags you out for too long and you get tired, suggest you have a nibble somewhere. It'll give you time to rest for a few minutes."
Harry looked at Xander. "Do you usually shop that way?"
"Now and then. When I'm bored." He grinned.
"We'll see what we can do to help you with that," Sam promised. "Farm tomorrow then back here to clean up then the beach?"
Xander beamed and nodded. "That sounds like a good day." He looked at Harry. "You can ride one of the two terrors. They're being snotty again this week."
"Both Princesses have that mood too," Dean reminded him.
"Well, yeah, but Pride's a nice horse."
"Pride's a huge horse," Sam pointed out.
"You ride your horses?" Harry asked. "I know you said you had some but I don't know anyone who rides."
"We have a farm," Xander said proudly. "Princess is technically Ryan's horse and her clone that a demon gave him. She was pregnant when it happened so we got Duchess and Countess. They're being a bit spoiled this week."
"Then there's his horse Pride and Ray Junior's horse Furry."
"Furry went to school with him. He's at a stable up where he's doing college." Xander nearly pouted. Harry patted him on the arm, making Xander hug him. "It'll be okay. He'll be back soon." He went back to eating. The reminder popped up so they let Harry watch the show on Las Vegas. Harry was staring at it in awe. "We're going there. We'll be there for nearly a full week. Don and Danny will only be there for a long weekend but we'll be there for a week," Xander said happily. "You can meet Jace."
"Xander, I was wondering," Sam said. "Is Jace the same Jace on the show?"
"Nope." He smirked. "Longer story there. Let's just say it came down to Hera cursing a town and Joxer not being able to read."
Dean shuddered, clutching his boy parts. "She did?"
"They did. It was the curse on the town. Ares, Cupid, and Strife helped him after that. Now she's a really good immie and an anchor the same way I am."
"Wow," Sam said. "What did she think about your 'I'm queen of the amazons' thing?"
"She thought it was cute. That I'd do a very good job. She also said now and then I was more queenly than her brother ever was."
Dean nodded. "Now and then you do go into princess mode, Xander. Sorry but truth, dude."
"I know. I usually have a reason too."
"Yup," the boys agreed. Harry was still staring. Sam put his plate down for him before he dropped it.
"Wait until he sees showgirls up close," Dean teased.
Xander nodded. "We can do that." Ray and Adam stomped in from the kitchen. "Want some chinese?"
"No thanks. We had beef." Ray pulled Harry to the office to talk to him, testing him in there. "He's fully unherbed," he called.
Adam stared at Xander. "He's how old?"
"Eighteen," Dean said.
"Hmm." He went to talk to the young one. It was clear Xander had adopted him as a new student. He should probably learn the rest of the group weren't that insane.
Xander put up the food, all but the one Dean snatched to nibble his way through. Then he came back to curl up next to Sam and watch the special while they planned their assault on Las Vegas in six weeks.
Harry looked up a few weeks later, watching Xander putter in the kitchen. "Xander?" Xander hummed since his head was in the fridge. "When do you start to train me in other things?"
Xander turned to look at him. "I have been, Harry."
"I don't think how to find sales at fashionable boutiques is going to help me in the war," he admitted.
Xander smirked. "I've taught you more than that, even if it was more subtle. Even Sam hasn't figured out all that I taught him when I was training him."
Harry considered it. Dean strolled in. "What else did you learn from Xander taking you shopping?"
"Stamina. A bit about types of people we hadn't run into on jobs." He sat down beside him. "Valuation of some things we'd never have run into on the road. We figured out a lot of protective ways of doing things without seeming to be overprotecting him from getting taken or robbed. How to ride a horse."
"That leads back to learning nature magic," Sam added as he came in. Harry gaped. "You have to understand nature to call on nature in a spell, Harry. Now we all know more about it. Before we understood roads, towns and cities, the road system. This way we got a different feel for the woods, and some swamp land, more animals that aren't dangerous and that we didn't have to hunt down to kill." He took the seat on the boy's other side. "We also learned a lot about how to manage things without seeming to manage them. It's more of a political thing sometimes. Subtly getting your way without making Xander pout at you for it." Xander smirked at that. "You did."
"I did. I learned that beating off people who wanted me." He looked at Harry. "Not to mention learning how to ride is a useful skill in case you need it to get away someday. It'll also help your balance. You move differently now. The dance did part of that. Riding's helping you refind your balance. If you were on your broom you'd realize that easier."
"I can't fly here. We're not allowed to do that stuff around muggles."
"Harry, to us you're a book," Xander reminded him. Harry moaned. "Go fly around the trees in the orchard or in the back yard. We don't have neighbors on either side or behind us thanks to two being stupid and one being a drug dealer."
"Someone's moving in out back," Dean corrected. "We saw people moving new furniture in yesterday from the practice room."
"Okay, so watch out for them," Xander agreed. "Not like you can't practice. There's a whole library and trunks full of books on magical stuff." Harry's mouth fell open. "Demon hunters need to use it sometimes too. Plus Giles sent ones he didn't want to Sam."
Sam nodded. "Don would like it if half of them disappeared. Aren't they in the other house?"
"Probably, yeah. I've also taught you how to appear calmer than you are. The outward appearance and shield you build can help when you're faced with something that disgusts you but you have to pretend to deal with it before you can kill it," he said blandly. "Dean had a pretty good one on some levels before. As long as he was going for sweet, bad boy, or clueless. Sam's got better. Dean's too. Yours will get there. Plus you need to get back into practice to make sure that new stamina stays."
"I should. Can I use upstairs?"
"We do. Or the backyard," Dean told him. Harry beamed at that. "Let Sammich there get you into the dead things and magic books." Harry nodded, heading off with Sam. "We really did get a lot more stamina following you around on a major shopping day."
"He's still too tired for that." He smirked at him. "But you can introduce him to the game system later. He's a young guy, he should be acting like one instead of an old man."
"He should." He went to help. Harry was moaning over the book list. "Later on, we'll make sure you have some fun, Harry. That way you remember that you're eighteen."
"Plus we can help with some schoolwork too," Sam agreed. "I'm missing writing papers."
Harry looked at him. "Not even Hermione's that bad," he teased with a small grin.
"Yes she was," Dean assured him. He patted him on the back of the head. "Are you writing to them about all this stuff?"
"I have no idea how I'd get mail to them."
"So write a journal. It'll help you keep things straight in your own head." Harry nodded, accepting that idea. "Plus give you a private place to work out ideas in."
"Are there later books?"
"Yeah but we didn't like them. That's why we only gave to book five. It was Xander's birthday present last year." Sam winked at him. "How true were they?"
"Fairly decent. Maybe eighty percent."
"Then have Xander take you to a bookstore and find the other two," Dean told him.
"You think he'd mind?"
"No. That and the video game store are right next to each other in his favorite mall. He or Ryan could take you since Ryan's coming over tonight to spar."
"Huh." He nodded. "I might do that then. Thank you, guys."
"Not a problem," Sam assured him. "We hate to see the bad guys win."
Harry grinned. "I doubt he will be." He looked at the list. "Is there a way to long-distance spy on someone?"
"You mean like scrying?" Sam asked.
"We're told that's a myth."
"Yay," Dean said dryly. He let Sam find that book for him. Basics of wandless magic could only help the kid. Sam and he set up in the hot tub out back. It was a large pool of water since they didn't have the jets turned on. It also had an easier spot to rest against. Dean brought out something for them to drink because it was hot outside today. "Here." He handed over a bottle of juice. "Try your friends first. You know them better than anyone else."
Harry reread the instructions and focused on Ron and Hermione. They'd probably be together in classes. Well, since it was after dinner they were in the library.
"Hermione, do you think Harry's all right?"
"He's fine, Ron. His trainer is taking good care of him I'm sure. He's probably learning all sorts of things."
"But we haven't heard from him."
She looked up. "Ron, his trainer's from another realm. Madam Pomfrey said she'd talked to his trainer when Harry finally woke up. He's fine and she told him to give us Harry back by the holidays."
Ron scowled. "That's missing a lot of school."
"I'd send him assignments but we have no way of getting them to him." She smiled. "Though that was something I would have said. I'm sure he's being made to study his textbooks as well, Ron. He said Sam had nearly went to law school and Xander said education was important."
Ron crossed his arms over his chest. "I still don't like this."
She closed her book with a sigh, one hand holding her spot. "Ron, what did you want to happen?"
"I'd like to have him back here. He can take care of himself. Not like Malfoy has been."
"I think someone's been testing methods on Malfoy to wear out his hormones," she said quietly, glancing around. "He hasn't been that healthy looking recently. Have you noticed?"
"Why are you watching him that closely?" he demanded.
"Because he's a good living manual of what Harry's going to be going through for the rest of his life. I've been looking up pheromones through some books my mother found me since we have absolutely nothing here on the subject. Harry will be like this forever, Ron. We've got to be understanding and helpful, not nag him like we were. It may be strange, but this is the person Harry is. If the Dursley's hadn't treated him so badly he would have had this happen around the same time you started to hit puberty. He's running late because of the way they treated him," she said at his confused look. "It delayed it."
"Oh. Another reason to hate 'em." He shrugged. "Can you find a way to spy on Harry or anything?"
"I've been looking. I can't really find a good way that'll work across realms."
Harry looked at Dean and Sam. "Can we send them this spell?"
"Nope." Sam grinned. "Not unless you can find a way for mail to get to them."
Hermione looked around, looking very confused as she pushed her hair behind her ears. "Did you hear something?"
"No. You're going barmy from all the studying," he said with a smirk.
"Shut up, Ron."
Harry leaned down to whisper the name of the book to her. She frowned. He did it again. He nearly fell in too. She found her quill and ink, taking down something. He said it again and she scratched that out, getting it right this time. He canceled it and looked at them. "So they can hear us."
"The book said they might be able to if you were concentrating that hard," Sam reminded him. "Now try the bad guys."
"Let's try a minor bad guy." Harry concentrated, pulling up a picture of Draco Malfoy. He was locked in a room by himself, pacing. "Damn."
Dean watched. "He's in backlog and surging."
Xander came out to look over Dean's shoulder. He concentrated and the pool opened to a silvery spot. He dropped something through it then let it close. The scrying had to be recast but he was smirking at Sam. "That should help him some."
"What did you send him?" Harry asked.
"Some of the fruit I like that tends to ease some of that out of us. I know it doesn't grow natively anywhere near there." They watched as the boy looked it over. "By the way, put your name on it, Harry." He walked off again.
"Drama princess," Sam called after him.
"You know it, baby, and they like me this way," Xander quipped back.
Harry laughed. "It's fine, Sam." He leaned down, concentrating. "My teacher sent that for you, Draco. He thought you might need it since you look like you're surging." The boy flinched, spinning around to catch him. "I'm just scrying, Malfoy. Calm down. I'll be home after that convention during the holidays. Xander said so. He said the fruit can help leach some of it out of you too. It's safer and easier if you can get Madam Sprout to grow it."
"What the bloody hell?" Malfoy muttered. "I'm going nutters. I swear I am."
"If you were, you'd be less well-dressed," Harry told the water. Draco glared up at the ceiling. "Try it, see if it helps." He canceled it. "Do you think he'll ever find control?"
"I think most of us, if left alone to figure it out, find some form of control," Sam told him.
"That might be nice." He concentrated on his enemy, keeping it at the lesser level. Voldemort stiffened so apparently he could feel something. Harry fingered the wand in his pocket. "Think I could curse him through it?"
"Not without Xander's portal," Dean said. "Huh, he looks even less human than we thought, Sammy."
"He does. Really pathetic."
Harry grinned. "He rules by fear."
"Which is really pathetic," Sam agreed. "People are trained from an early age to be sheep, but he's taking it too far."
"We are?" Harry asked.
"Mind your mother and father. Mind authority figures," Sam mimicked. "Without we'd have chaos, but if you get a bad leader, then the whole group of people won't resist that much because they weren't taught to think for themselves. It's happened many times through history. It's why history is so bloody and messy. People would puke if they saw actual history going on."
Dean nodded. "Nothing's as pretty as they write because the winners spin it to make themselves look better. Sometimes winning means having to be eviler than the other evils you're fighting. It's the only way to come out on top."
"I didn't think about that." He looked at the pool, finding it faded. He sharpened it again and watched as Voldemort gave orders to search the house for intruders. He canceled it. "Do you think I could learn more about the portal stuff?"
"That's wandless magic. You learn that in a progression like you do in school. Small things then bigger things," Sam ordered. Harry beamed at that. "I have no idea how Xander went from plants to that."
"It was necessary probably. Kept him wherever he should be," Dean told him. "Go study, Harry. We'll play after dinner." He ran off to do that, taking that book with him to start there. "How trained do you think he can get by the time he's got to go back?"
"Probably pretty well. At least to the point where he can look up new ones and teach himself." He looked at the tub then at him. "I'm worried about the other kid. It's clear he's about to snap."
"With what we read about his family they're probably planning on trying to use him to gain power anyway. Make an alliance."
"Could be," Sam agreed. "You know, he's right. We never thought about these things before we met Xander."
Dean smirked. "Don't blow his ego up any more, Sammy. He'll make us go to Armani again."
Sam cackled. "That's bad. That's even worse than my thought." Dean quirked up an eyebrow. "If your patronius is based on something inside you and you have to have happy memories to cast it, would Harry's change to a patronius of Xander?"
Dean cackled, swatting him on the arm. "That's so bad." He went to tell Harry that. "Hey, Harry. Sammy wanted to know if your patronius would change from this."
"I have no idea," he admitted. "Why?"
"He was thinking it might come out as a patronius of Xander."
Harry snickered. "That would be wickedly cool. What would his come out as?"
"Strife," Dean told him, making Harry laugh some more. "We'll hit the bookstore and the video game store after dinner, kid." He walked off to share with Xander, who was pouting. "What?"
"I'd make a damn good patronius. As long as I had my axe or sword."
Dean patted him on the head. "Of course you would. You'd slay dementors then make fun of them." Xander smirked but nodded. "Sammy's worried about the Malfoy kid."
"So am I. I'm going to scry him now and then to make sure he's not having too many more troubles. If so, I'll handle it and get to smack that headmaster around."
"Good deal." He sat down. "Ryan's coming over tonight."
"I should probably sharpen my sword then." He went to do that.
Dean grinned, checking what games they already had at the house. They could add some more. It'd help with Xander's boredom problem when they weren't around. His phone rang. "Yeah?" he answered. "Hey, Ellen. Miami. Talking to the one who taught us more about swords and ancient weapons. Helping him with the new student and being spoiled rotten since he's a great cook. Why?" He listened. "Sammy's here too. Again, why?" He listened. "Huh. Nope, not that way. Sure, I can do that." He hung up. "Hey, Xander, can you create a portal to somewhere you haven't seen?"
"Only if you suddenly go telepathic," Xander called from upstairs. "Why?"
"The hunters are hearing stories that we're different."
Sam came into the living room. "Who said that?"
"Ellen heard that we took a demonic deal."
"Not hardly." He sat down. "Want to go talk to her? It'll take a few days."
Xander came bouncing down the stairs. "Anywhere nearby that we might be able to get a picture from? Like a park or something?"
"The local town has a town-cam," Sam offered. He logged on to find it, letting him see it. "In semi-real-time. Small video lag."
Xander nodded, taking it and Dean out back to open the portal. It shimmied a few times before fully opening. "There you go."
Dean looked at the inside of the bar then at him. "How did you do that?"
"I focused there then the biggest surge of taint." He gave him a look. "Hunting does taint."
"I know that." He walked through and the portal closed behind him. "The one who taught us ancient weapons can do that," he said at the horrified looks. "Xander's kinda cool that way and he cooks great meals." He walked over to Ellen. "Test me if you want."
"What was that?"
"Portal. Demons like Xander so he learned how to warp and use their portals to keep himself and us safe."
"Why do they like him?" she demanded.
"Because he's powerful and he used to hunt too." She gaped. He pulled out a picture, holding it up. "Seen him when his hair was shorter?"
"There was a girl who had his picture," she said, taking it. "Much shorter hair. Is that... Florida?"
"Miami." He took it back. "You can test me if you want." He looked up then at her. "I walked through the devil's trap."
"I noticed. They said you're tainted and have healing gifts?"
"Not quite." He smirked. "That's an accident of Dad's."
"Why?" she asked.
"Because Mom didn't give birth to us," he said quietly. "Dad found me and Sammy got switched at the hospital." She shuddered. He stared at her. "And I know there's at least one other of us who hunt. We ran into him," he said in a near whisper.
She nodded. "There is. I know him. I've seen that." He nodded. "You're sure?"
"Holy water?" Someone threw some on him. Dean looked back. "If you get me too wet, Xander's going to come fuss." He looked around the room again. "Any other questions? We've talked to Bobby for a good, long while after we trained."
"Why do they want this guy?" the one who had thrown the holy water on him asked.
"They want to own him. A concubine that's a former hunter and has skills like his is highly desired. So they give him shit, try to steal him now and then, and then make him destroy them. It's how he gets his hunting in now. Us too part of the time since they decided we were a good second choice to him." They all gaped. He shrugged. "It happens, guys. We all know it happens. It still wasn't a demonic deal. No contracts or anything like that. Awakening some gifts I already had because Xander's the one who gave me that ancient axe we have now. It was his when he was hunting. She's specially blessed and all that good stuff."
"Your dad would've hated that," another hunter said.
"Dad probably would've freaked out about Xander anyway. But he did train us very well in how to fight with a sword, axe, or any other bladed weapon. He also has classification manuals and stuff so we spent a lot of the time in them to learn more."
"He sounds like a watcher," someone said.
"He used to work beside one until his girl went off the deep liquor end of the pool. He followed. They're making amends so they sent Sammy and Xander a hellish ton of books in bottomless trunks. Sammy got to geek out for weeks on that." He grinned. "I got to play with more weapons because Xander likes weapons. We even got to sort and hand some lesser things over to the crime lab down there for destruction. Their ballistics tech is cute, bouncy, and blonde."
"Hold on. I know their lab," one said, standing up. "I knew Calleigh when she was little. We write to each other now and then. She said something about a Dean and Sam.... Oh, shit, that's Harris you were training with?"
"Yeah, Xander's a cool guy," Dean agreed. "She go off about his hair?"
"Among other things," he said, staring him down. Dean shrugged. "Are you?"
"None of your business. Even if we were, we'd handle it in-house." He swallowed. "But yeah, he's the guy who taught us a lot about swords and stuff. Including how to ride a horse. He insisted." Ellen smothered a laugh. He looked at her. "Seriously. Him and the high priest to Ares down there have horses on a farm Xander owns. He took us out there a number of times to teach us how to ride in case it became necessary. Plus he said chicks dig it."
"Some do," she agreed, smirking at him. "I can't imagine you up on a horse, Dean. Or Sammy." He found the picture and showed it to her. "Okay, that's just strange, even for a Winchester."
"Dad probably would've freaked a lot but oh well." He put the wallet back. "Any other questions you guys have?" They all shook their heads. "If you need us, we're in Miami helping Xander with his newest student."
"We heard you got taken by a demon," one said.
"One did kidnap us off realm, yeah. A few have tried since they decided we're the next best thing to Xander. We beat them, we destroy them, we come back home and have a beer. Be damned if I'm going to be some demon's concubine."
A few shuddered at that thought. Ellen patted him on the back. "I can't imagine you in that sort of outfit either, Dean."
He glared. "There are no pictures of the time one of them knocked me out and redressed me. There never will be pictures of it either. Don't hold your breath."
She cackled. "One did?"
"And Sammy helped Xander blow up his palace too. Then we went to a demon bar to work on some higher identification of things we've never run into before. Did you know there's a cloister of demonic nuns?" Her mouth fell open. "Coptic nuns, but a full cloister. Very holy. The holy water didn't hurt them and they said they make it stronger than even Bobby does. They made us cookies when we ran into one having problems and returned her back to her people. Some bully in a demon market Xander was getting us home through the last time."
"How?" one asked.
He shrugged, leaning on the bar. "A lot of demon realms, dude. There's a whole bunch of them and only about five percent are the ones we see and deal with. Most of the ones we've walked past that haven't wanted to keep us as a toy only wanted to be left alone. Some of the ones who wanted to keep us didn't associate with humans outside of keeping a toy now and then. As a matter of fact, Xander had a very good friend on their High Council. The same Council that ruled over the realms, kept most of them off ours, kept the peace among all the tribes, clans, all that stuff. He got assassinated for negotiating a peace treaty. He kept a lot of demons off Xander's hair. There's whole worlds of demons we've never seen because they hide them."
"Prove it," another one said.
Dean wrote down an address, walking it over to one guy he knew. "Get someone local to there to check into that. It's a demon brothel of the non-possessed, but funny looking ones sort. There's probably at least six species there."
He looked at the address then called a friend locally to ask him about that. He went pale as the guy described it and said how nice they were. He hung up, staring at him. "They let in humans?"
"There's usually non-violence charms and some people don't care what it looks like as long as it's good. I'm more picky but there's even species of demons that're meant to be sex slaves. They were bred and born for that purpose. Quarth demons are usually pretty funny to talk to. They have some strange ideas but they're nice, harmless demons who need sex to live. So they work in brothels until they find someone nice to own them. They think Xander is one of them, even though he's not, so they want to treat him the same way. Now they want to treat me and Sammy the same way. They think we're cute." He smirked.
"Only when you were younger," Ellen snorted. "Why don't we run into those sort?"
"They try very hard to stay hidden. It's a very tightly closed society. The only reason they like Xander so much is because he accidentally found a demon brothel in New York." Another hunter choked in the back. "Know Devi's?" he asked dryly, staring her down.
"Yeah, had a possessed human in there," she choked. She cleared her throat. "Xander, dark hair, out of Sunnydale Xander?" Dean nodded. "Devi moaned about him a lot."
"He wanted Xander a lot. He can't have him. Xander's got boyfriends for that."
"Good to know." Dean smirked. "Oh, that means. Oh!" He nodded once. "Damn, Dean. Winchesters are proving that they're the toilet paper of the universe again, huh?"
"Only Sammy. They want me because I'm a wonderful hunter." He smirked. "And hey, we could be worse. Xander's the worst we've ever seen. He's the only person I've ever met that got tracked and nearly taken by eighteen demons in one day. The same day Sammy and I were watching him shop." She shuddered. "Exactly. So, any other questions?" They all shook their heads. "You sure? Get it out now. Xander's making dinner and I'm starved."
"He's a really good cook?" Ellen asked.
"He's a damn good cook and he makes too much so there's always leftovers." He grinned. "Xander's a kick-ass cook. Who spoils horribly. If Bobby told you about the suddenly appearing sandwiches? That was Xander. All handmade too." She moaned. "Yeah, they tasted that good." He grinned. "Any other questions?" No one said anything. "Good. Then let me get back to helping spoil Xander's newest student and then dinner." He called Xander. "It's me. Can I come home? Where are you?" He groaned, rubbing his forehead. "Harry or Sammy with you?" He nodded. "Okay, let me get outside. You sure?" He nodded. "Thanks, Xander." He hung up. "Damn demons." He walked outside, grabbing the axe from the woodpile. "I'll get you a new one, Ellen," he called back through the door. He got taken and took a swing at the demon trying to grab him. It went thud very nicely. "Fuckers." He walked off to handle all the evil bitches again. Xander was tied down. Sammy was tied down. The head demon was trying to mess up Harry's hair. The axe made a nice dent in its forehead when he threw it. The demon screamed and more guards came in. Dean shot the few coming while Harry got the other two free. Then it was really on.
Don came home, blinking as first Harry, then Dean and Sam, then Xander all reappeared wearing different clothes that were now nasty and covered in goo. "Long trip?" he asked dryly.
"No. Check the roast? I put it in right before they took us. I'm not sure how long it's been." He went to change. The others did the same thing. Dean shaking his head the whole way.
"Hey, Xander, can we send Ellen that classification manual?" Dean called as he trudged up the stairs. "She didn't know about half of those species."
"If you can find a second copy. I need mine."
"Okay. We can do that. Sammy, find Ellen a copy of those books."
"Already working on it, Dean. Though I was going to send them to Bobby. You take Ryan's room. I've got our shower." Dean nodded, going to do that.
Don looked around the kitchen, shaking his head. He checked the roast. It was a bit overdone so he pulled it out. Xander could make a sauce to help that poor piece of meat. Xander came out with wet hair dripping down his back and in shorts. "No laundry?"
"Nothing I want to wear. I'm having a naked day but I'd embarrass Harry." He checked the roast, pouting.
"Make a sauce, Xander." He took a kiss and went to change into after hours clothes.
Xander flipped through his recipes, finding one he might like. He got to work on it, brushing it on the meat and then making enough to use like a gravy. It'd help. That let him deal with the side dishes they'd need for dinner. Ryan walked in. "Come carve this. The demon took me while it was baking so Don suggested a sauce."
"That's not a bad thing," Ryan assured him. "Anything I need to complain about?"
"Not at the moment." He took a kiss with a grin. "You look like Eric tried to screw your cheerios to have the holes again."
Ryan burst out laughing. "He and Aiden are on again at the moment. I'll tell him you said that." He gave him a shoulder nudge before getting the carving knives. No knives in the drawer or the dishwasher. "Xander, did something think you were suicidal? There's no knives."
Xander looked then at him. Then up. "I want them back," he snarled. Nothing. "Shit. Dean?" He came down the stairs at a jog. "They think we're going to be mean to each other with the knives. They took them all."
Dean gave him an odd look, checking the drawer himself. "Huh. I've got a good sized hunting knife in the car to carve that with if you want. We can hit the kitchen place tomorrow, Xander."
"I might like that." Dean got the hunting knife, which Ryan made sure was clean before he used it on the roast. Xander plated things up and put the sauce over the meat for them. "There, try that."
Dean took a careful bite. "It's a bit strange to have the orange sauce on the meat but not bad." He tasted it. "Could use some darker flavors though." Xander got some red wine vinegar and stirred it in, adding more to Dean's plate. He nodded that it was great so he added it to the others too. Ryan helped him carry out to the living room.
Don looked at the sauce. "I was thinking gravy."
"I suck at making gravy." He sat beside him. "Danny?"
"No clue. He was out on a scene when I left." He took a kiss. "Ryan tastes good," he teased.
"He had that look like Eric used his cheerios for convenient holes again."
Don burst out laughing so hard Harry had to catch his plate before it fell. He hugged him then Ryan. "That's so bad, Xander."
"Yes I am now and then," he quipped. "It counters all my good boy days. Harry, we've got to hit the kitchen store tomorrow. We've got no knives."
"Why?" Don asked. "You had a bunch."
"Oh." He took his plate back and ate a bite of the meat. "Not bad. Different tasting sauce." He ate another bite and kept going until it was gone. Dean and Harry got seconds. Sam got seconds on some things. Ryan got dessert out of the fridge for them and they all inhaled that before settling in to let the food digest before sparring practice.
Harry let Xander explain everything in the kitchen store to him. He had no idea why people needed separate tools to do some pretty simple things but apparently they did. Xander even got a few new gadgets, even if Sam groaned about it. Dean was doing some needed research for someone at the house. So Sam was walking them around the kitchen store. Then the grocery store. Then home to put things up, then back to do clothes. Again. "Xander, I have plenty of clothes."
"Shut up, Harry. I'm in a spoiling mood and it's not all going to you. Besides, you need something cute to wear to attract a good boyfriend or girlfriend." He smirked at his logic, going back to his hunting and choosing.
"Then they'd expect me to spoil them the same way you are me."
"You'll spoil them in your own way. Sam has a lot of good ideas about spoiling lovers I'm sure."
"I did have some I used with Jess," he agreed. Harry gave him an interested look. "My girlfriend that got killed, Harry." He gave him a shoulder squeeze. "Xander, no one we know would look good in that color of green," he pointed out.
"Alexx won't let you buy her presents," he reminded him. Xander glared. "Okay, you can try it. If she makes you pout we'll pout back for you." Xander grinned and got it anyway and another three more for her before they checked out and moved on. It was going to be a *long* day. "You don't need shoes or anything, right?" he whispered in Harry's ear. Harry shook his head. "You sure?" Harry nodded. "Okay. Hey, Xander, Harry's getting a bit tired. Can we stop for a snack break?"
"One more store."
"Xander, c'mon. We can hit it in a few minutes. Please?"
"Fine," he complained. "They might be closed then."
"It's only lunch time. They'll open back up and it doesn't look like anything but cheap stuff anyway." He got them to a nice outdoor cafe, getting Xander down to eating. Harry too. Dean never let him fuss over him so he had to substitute when he could. Dean found them and sat down before they were done. "We find it?"
"Yup, not that hard. Something we've run into in the past." He looked at Xander, then at Harry, then at Sam again. "Rest break?"
"I was a bit tired," Harry told him.
"It happens to the best of us. Xander wore us out many times, Harry." He patted the kid on the head. Sam stared at him. "What?"
"Dean wears his bracelets on the other wrist, dude."
"Oops." The demon disappeared. So did Xander's wallet.
Xander looked down then at Sam. Who held up what he had. "Thank you. I'll get him later." It reappeared on the table. Xander didn't touch it. "It had better all be there and normal," he whispered. "Or else." He checked. The cash was in Euros. He glared up at the sky. "Fix it." It shimmered and fixed. "Thank you." He checked. Real, American dollars again. "I could've sworn I had more than that."
"You probably still do," Sam promised. "Unless he changed the hundreds for ones again."
"If he did, I get to destroy them all this time, right?"
"Sure, we can help you do that," Sam promised with a smile. Xander beamed back. When the card declined, Sam paid for it out of the wallet that wasn't touched. "Magnetized," he told the waitress. "He's getting a new one and forgot." That one went through and he went to have Steve look it over. He had a copy of all his cards on file and could hold the wallets. The one they were using needed to be authorized but that was fine. Harry still ended up with more clothes. Sam too. Then they went home to let Harry rest while they found swords and went to destroy this new one. Even if the DPP did try to stop them. Pity for it.
Dean looked up as the officer appeared in the study with a huff. "They go after the one that tried to get them this time?"
"It's not seemly!"
"Then the stupid bitches should take no for an answer since Xander and Sammy aren't interested in a demonic lover." The officer gaped at him. He smirked. "You're new, aren't you?" he asked facetiously. The demon growled. He looked up. "Detective Mystick or one of you others?" Mystick, the vampire on staff, appeared, then snorted at the new guy. "Xander and Sammy went to have a fun time with the new tormenting one. This one tried to stop them. Said it wasn't seemly."
"I'll straighten him out. You might be getting called on this one."
Dean snorted, handing him something. "Send that to Xander for me please? I've got to finish looking this one evil bitch up."
"Fine." He took the rookie back there to explain things to him while sending Xander that shrunken case. A few minutes later they got reports of a realm on fire. Literally. "Must've been artillery," he decided, going back to explaining some facts to the newbie on the force. They brought Xander and Sam back, letting him handle it and fix what the demon had done to his accounts this time. It really wasn't that pretty and soon Xander was going to own enough realms to sit on the council himself. Then they'd really have problems.
Dumbledore looked up as his friend and helper walked into his office. "Alistair. How was he?"
"Harry's being a boy, Albus." Mad Eye Moody sat down, staring at the headmaster. "They were at a convention for their sorts. It was a happy, nice place in Las Vegas. Pretty city. Harry was laughing his butt off over something, acting like a normal boy. Had his wand on him but wasn't using it in sight. He went to a few of the seminars, including self-defense with one of the guys who was always with him."
"No, one of his former students, Dean. I talked to him, he said Sam and Dean had been there when he was training. I remember seeing them through the portal. Nice guys for demon hunters." Albus went a bit pale at that then coughed to return himself to normal. "They're having a good time and Harry seemed pretty settled. He did spend some time in a room where everyone was piled into a huge cuddle. Seemed to enjoy it a lot. He had been surging just a tiny bit until he went in there. Spent about two hours just being held and stuff. Worked really well. The other people at the convention were pretty decent. They booked the whole hotel so no one outside could get in. I had to be a staff member for it. Xander was pointing out sights to him. They visited a huge bookstore with ancient books. Sam, the tallest one of the two hunters, Harry, and Xander all picked out huge stacks of books. Harry came out with about seven of them. Might've had a small one tucked between them. They were all books on magic."
"That's good to know. What did Xander get?"
"About the same. He had some skills. Pretty minor it felt like. All that wandless sort." He crossed his feet, giving the headmaster a bland look. "They're fine and Harry only had one accidental surge. Which he handled almost immediately by himself. When I talked to him, he said he's learned a lot about how to handle himself and other things. Said he's been doing his book work as well. Dean's taught him how to use some other weapons better. Harry's a peach with a sword. They were showing off that dance style you mentioned at the convention to teach a few of the members how to do it. Looked enticing so I couldn't watch for long. Had some swordwork built in. I've seen strippers be less enticing than that stuff really." He shifted again. "They made sure he ate, went to bed sometime, and when they left it was to go back to Miami. Xander's boyfriends and other friends showed up with them. I know at least Xander spotted me. He stared at me until I backed off and Harry told him I was all right. One of the family's friends spotted me as well. Redhead, very icy when he asked me why I was staring at the boy. He was an officer so I leveled with him about watching over the kid that weekend for you. He wasn't happy. Something about endangering his life?"
"I had him dosed with those herbs to get him calmed down and it was a bit too high of a dose," he said.
"I see." That didn't go at all with the story the boy himself had told him. He'd let that go for now. "Xander did say he'd be checking on Malfoy now and then as well since he clearly wasn't handling himself so well." He stood up. "It's nice to see the boy being a boy. He was vigilant during the convention. Only one guy tried to pickpocket him and he got them back. The officers watching the convention for problems were nice when they arrested the guy for him. Basically, the kid's fine, Dumbledore. Leave him alone for now. He's got it covered and he'll be back after that convention at the holidays. That way Xander doesn't have to wear himself out taking them across multiple demon realms to get him home."
"What about these demon hunters?"
"Pair of brothers. Fairly tough. Looked like someone military trained 'em. Had good reaction times. One was helping out in the self-defense class with some tall guy who was a federal agent. They brought their car from Miami and it had weapons in it. Including a very old blessed axe. Harry said that had belonged to Xander but since he wasn't actively hunting it went to Dean when he showed skill with it. That way it wasn't getting dusty waiting on the next apocalypse." Dumbledore shuddered.
"Demons can do that. Harry did say a few had tried to get his attention but he brushed them off so they went after Xander, who killed 'em for it mostly. They tried neat things like taking all the kitchen stuff in the house. Taking his wallet and replacing the big bills with little ones. Pranks to get attention. Heard from one of the DPP, demon police," he said at the odd look. "Talked to him when I caught him watching the boy. They were worried Xander would destroy another realm when the next one went after him. Seems he's got a bit of a temper. He's done in three or four realms and a bunch of clans and families for trying for him." He smirked. "He's not a bad looking guy. Even with the hair."
"I don't think he's a fit guardian for Harry."
"He's a good one. Fusses just enough to make it nice, but doesn't fuss too much. Makes him want to study and learn new things. Harry and some blond guy that Xander knew well enough to hug and kiss on the cheek talked about riding horses too."
Dumbledore kept the sigh inside. "Was he studying?"
"I saw his school books with him. He did them one night when everyone else was watching something. He didn't want to watch so he went to do some more in his books. Might be a bit behind at the moment but he did spend three weeks in bed from that accidental overdose you gave him." He stared him down. "He'll be back after the holidays. Oh, and he did get scrying to work. Said he gave Granger the name of the book. Checked on Malfoy, which was how he got that fruit that helped him so much." He smirked. "He's checking around now and then. Plus we're a book to them so he's read ahead of the timeline to see how the fictional him managed to defeat Voldemort. Just in case he can use it here."
"That is helpful. Is he healthy otherwise?"
"Just fine. Actually put on a bit of weight finally." He left, finding McGonagall waiting downstairs with the nurse. "Being nosy?" he taunted.
"Of course we are. How is he?"
"Good. They were at a convention. He was laughing, had put on some weight, and looked happy enough. Got along well with the others. Spent two hours in a room just cuddling with a group of people. Got a pickpocket easily enough." She snorted at that. "He is checking now and then. He got scrying to work."
Madam Pomfrey smiled. "I was hoping that how Mr. Malfoy got that fruit."
"Is it growing okay?"
"Mostly. We figured it needed a warmer climate so she's got a heating charm on it to steady the growth." He nodded once. "He was all right?"
"Looked healthy enough to me. Had put on weight finally. No longer so scrawny. Had his wand on him but wasn't using it." McGonagall nodded at that. "He told me we're a book to them." She groaned, rubbing her forehead. "Said it's fairly accurate. Also said that he got the last one to see how he did it. He'll be at that convention locally. Xander and a family friend both spotted me and got very protective over the boy. Oh, and he knows how to ride a horse now. Xander made him learn."
"It's a skill that could come in handy I suppose."
"Plus he joked that girls like them."
She chuckled. "I suppose they do. Thank you, Alistair." She kissed him on the cheek and went back to her classroom much less worried about the boy. She spotted Malfoy up the hall. "Problems?"
"A few," he admitted. He held something up. "Sniff." She did and groaned. "I don't know who did it this time but I'm rather annoyed because I don't need to spend another week in the infirmary. Can't we obliviate those who don't need to know?"
"If I could, I would have already," she assured him. "Was it all washed in it again?" He nodded. "Very well. Madam Pomfrey, they did it again."
The nurse came over to sniff, growling. "I'm going to dose him," she snarled.
"There is that potion my father takes now and then," Draco offered dryly. "What do you want me to do about this? It's going to drive me insane soon. I can't keep missing classes or I'll never leave here."
McGonagall took the clothes from him. "Relax and let us handle it, Mr. Malfoy. We will. Have you told your head of house?"
He shook his head. "He had canceled classes today to gather something for a necessary potion. I have no idea where he is."
She pursed her lips together. "All right. Then I'll handle this for you. Poppy, have a house elf we trust clean his clothes in clean water. Make sure it's clean." She nodded, taking that shirt to take with her. She went to talk to the headmaster. Mad Eye was watching with interest but she didn't care.
Mad Eye looked at the boy. "It sucks when you're burdened with a curse like this one." He tossed him something. "The calling stone to Potter's teacher's house." Draco gaped. "He's worse than you two combined, kid. He's at the top of the scale and maxed out." He walked off happier. He hated the little brat. Thought he was a slimy waste of sperm. But he wouldn't want anyone to suffer the way that kid had been.
Draco tucked the stone into his pocket, going to think. This was not the slytherin way and his father wanted to take advantage of it. He was most overjoyed that Draco had turned out this way. Draco didn't really want to be some rich thing's playtoy but his father was insisting it was good for the family. Thankfully he wouldn't be eighteen for another few months. Then things would have to be decided quickly.
Harry was scrying the school when Xander came out to look over his shoulder because he had yelled. "I don't know what they did to him this time but there's no way Draco should be surging like you do, Xander."
"No, there's not." He went to change out of his lounging pajamas and into leathers. Plus his sword. He put on boots and used the calling stone to get to the school, walking up the hall to where he could feel the boy getting ready to explode. He was in a class. He walked in and hauled the kid up, taking him to the bathroom. "Malfoy, we've got to cure this little problem."
"Who are you?" the teacher demanded.
Xander stared at him. "Mr. Potter's trainer, Xander Harris." The man flinched, stepping back. "Leave me and my new student alone before he accidentally hurts someone or himself." He walked him into the bathroom. "Take care of it before you let it go explosively."
"I can't. Someone put a bloody curse on me."
Xander stared. "Shit, kid. No wonder." He concentrated, putting his hands on Draco's head. "There it is." He prayed hard to Hecate, feeling like he got permission. He removed it and the others on the boy, letting him go release himself in the toilet. Xander relaxed against the sink, nodding at the ghost that floated in. "Morning. I'm helping my new student before he enslaves part of the school. You might tell the three people who cursed him to never do so again."
"Who are you, boy?"
"Xander Harris. From Sunnydale." He smirked. "I'm a hellmouth baby and Anchor." The ghost floated back at that. Xander let him see his hip's tattoo. He wasn't going to strip to show off the rest. McGonagall stomped in. "Professor."
"Xander. Why are you here?" He pointed at the toilet. "Malfoy?"
He nodded, taking her hand to let those things he had removed taint her instead. "I removed those from him. Three different curses, all feeling like different people had cast them."
She shuddered. "I'll have our charms teacher remove them from me to see who did it."
"Please do. One was highly unkind since it was a cockring spell." She shook her head. "Oh, yeah. Which was why the boy was endangering himself and others. He and Harry can get along at the house until the holidays."
"His father will never consent."
"You can tell his father that one of the best trained of those of us with this problem have him to train him. If he doesn't agree, I'd like to see him try to find me." She laughed. "Exactly. Draco, are you nearly done?"
"I'm fine," he said, coming out to wash his hands. "I'm sorry, Professor. I tried." Snape was still missing.
Xander patted him on the shoulder. "They've been feeding you surging herbs, kid. You can't handle that. Oh, Professor, Harry found his other professor who's missing." Draco gave him a heated look. "He's safe but captured. Not that side but your side."
"I'll talk to the headmaster."
"Good. Before I smack the shit out of the elderly man for doing this to the kids." He looked at Draco. "Get what you need. We're going to Miami with me."
"It's where I live." He smirked. "I have a wonderful large house. You and Harry can learn how to get along for a few weeks." The professor summoned his things for him. Draco made sure it was all there, summoning a few things by name, then he took the boy with him down to the barrier. One large person stood in his way. "You must be Hagrid. Harry's spoken well of you."
"Who're you?" he asked.
Hagrid swallowed. "He told me you helped him."
"I'm still helping him since he was maliciously given something that nearly killed him. This one as well. They'll be safe with me. You can send the funny eyed one if you need to check on him again." He walked the boy around him. "If your father fusses, I'll kick his fairy ass too."
"Aren't you gay?" Draco asked. "I ask because of the hair and the walk."
"Well, yeah, but I can still kick his ass. I was trained at a temple of Ares, Draco. I can kick many asses." Draco looked stunned. Xander grinned. "I'm an anchor to Cupid, Strife, and Ares. With a bit thrown in from the others since I can do a bit of magic and things. Are we ready?" He nodded. He took the boy's hand. "Hold onto your trunk." Draco did that and they disappeared onto a demon realm. "I can't get us directly but within two stops. Hold on." He did the other moves, landing them on the back lawn. "There we go." Draco was pale and shaky. "Go into the kitchen. I'll make you something for your stomach." He went that way. "Harry, Dean, Sam? Visitor."
Harry came in, smiling at Draco. "You all right? I was scrying Ron when I saw you about to explode."
"I'm fine now. He removed the curses from me," he said quietly. "This is a nice house."
"Thank you. There's empty rooms on the second floor. Harry can show you around after you drink something for your stomach." He handed it over. "Sip that. It should help." He put some crackers next to him as well. "There. Harry, what was I making for dinner?"
"The stuff you're burning in the oven?" he guessed.
Xander looked then grimaced. "I guess I was." He tossed that out and found the recipes open so he went back to it.
"Please not lamb," Dean begged. Xander sighed and got pork instead. "Thanks, dude." He smirked at Draco. "Welcome to Miami. I'm Dean, that's Sam."
"He's spoken of you in my presence before," he said, shaking his hand. "Could I possibly lie down for a bit?"
"This way, Malfoy," Harry said. He led him up to the spare room. "Here, settle in. No house elves." Draco nodded, resting on the bed. He came down. "He seems almost whipped," he said quietly.
"That's called reprogramming," Dean admitted. "You see it with abused spouses and things, kiddo." He looked up then at Xander, who gave him a look. "He'll be fine."
"I get to kick his father's ass."
"Sure," Dean agreed. "And the headmaster if he shows up."
Xander grinned. "Cool. You sure you want pork?"
"Xander, we don't care as long as it's not lamb," Dean told him. "Fix whatever you want to fix and we'll bow as long as it's tasty."
Xander grinned. "Thanks, Dean. Finish off the last of the chinese with Harry for lunch?" They got the rest of the containers out and went to the living room to eat. Xander put the pork back and decided what he really wanted was chicken tonight so everyone was getting chicken.
Xander felt the protections around the house go off so he got out of bed and grabbed his sword, heading outside. "The funny eyed one. Welcome to Miami."
Mad Eye looked at him then away. "You could have put on clothes, boy."
"You're interrupting my snuggling time, Mad Eye."
"You know who I am?"
"I read the first five books too." He crossed his arms. "The boys are fine. They're sleeping. Draco's clearly being forced into a role that's not him. He's looking scared of himself like someone's abused spouse."
Mad Eye looked at him. "They found the cursers."
"Good. Did they punish them?"
"The one done by a student. The other two were done by his father."
"How would his father have done it from a distance?"
"We're not sure. Can he stay?"
"He can. I can teach him a lot and I doubt he'd mind helping me shop. It's not too late, he wasn't broken, just bent."
"Good. The Headmaster isn't happy."
"He shows up here I get to use him as bait for the next several fishing trips," Xander said simply.
"Can you use that thing?" Xander nodded. "You sure?"
"You should scry the sparring practice sometime, Moody."
"I got that book from Granger. It's real easy as a beginning manual. She can't do it though. Weasley's brother can."
"That's fine. Harry won't mind." He smirked. "Anything else? It's the middle of the night."
"Nope. Just keep the kids working on their homework. Getting behind is bad for their tests."
Xander waved a hand. "He'll do fine. They both will." That got a nod. "You can tell whoever his father wanted to give him to that we're not ownable. We can only grant our favors to those we find worthy."
"I can do that," he said with an evil smirk. "Any other commands?"
"Yeah, duck." He ducked and Xander threw his sword at the guy coming over the back fence. He screamed. Ryan, since he was in residence tonight, came rushing out with his gun. "He was scaling the back fence, Ry."
"I can see that." He tossed the sword back, letting Xander catch it. "Who are you and why are you trespassing?" He pulled off the mask. "Know him?"
"Isn't that Stetler's new minion of puss sucking?"
"Possibly." He called it in and waited while Xander went back into the house and the wizard disappeared. The man was making squeaky noises so he eased up on his collar. A patrol car pulled in so he walked him over. "Scaling the back wall."
"This house is under investigation," he said.
"No it's not," Ryan told him.
"We say it's a haven of illicit dealings."
"Your boss won't," Ryan told him. "He knows Xander only spoils us with food."
"Two detectives live here full time."
"Yeah, they're called boyfriends," the driver of the cruiser told him. He took him. "No cuffs, Wolfe?"
"Not on me. Xander got him with his sword in the leg. That's why he's limping."
"Works for us. Thanks. Need us to check the grounds?"
"Nope. We've got the dogs for that." That got an evil smirk. "Thanks." He walked inside. "Hershey. Kiss." They came out. "Check the grounds, girls." They went to sniff. They barked at someone hiding in a bush. The patrol officer had waited so he took that one too. The other one was a neighbor so the neighborhood security people got him home. He was a bit drunk in the tree by the fence. Ryan took the dogs back inside, waving at the cruiser as it pulled off. "Good girls." He got them a treat and let them go back to wherever they wanted to nap. He looked up to find Draco standing there. "It's over with."
"Was one of us here?"
"Mad Eye was," Xander said, coming out of the bedroom in a robe this time. "They found who cursed you. They punished the student that did one."
"The other two?" he asked calmly.
"Basically," Xander agreed with a grin. "He said to bring you back at the same time. To make sure you do your homework. To make sure you weren't broken by their fucking with you. Little things like that." He patted him on the head but the kid ducked away, earning a smile. "Good. Go back to bed, Draco. I'll make breakfast then we'll go to the farm to check on the horses tomorrow." He nodded, going to do that. He looked at Ryan. "Thank you."
"Welcome." He took a kiss. "They leave you hanging?" he teased.
"Yeah, but Don's being possessive."
"Bring Ryan in here," Danny ordered. Xander pulled him in there. "Lay down, Ryan." Ryan climbed in, getting some Xander cuddles. And a nice blow job. Xander was happy to help him back to sleep.
Draco came out of his room the next morning, finding Harry coming down the stairs. "Rooming in the attic?"
"That's the practice room." He nodded. "Xander cooks an enormous breakfast." He led the way down there, pointing. "That's the library. Half of the magic books are in bottomless trunks and bags. The index is that maroon book on the smaller desk." He walked him into the kitchen. "That door in the hallway leads to a sub-realm that has a copy of the house before it was updated by Xander." Xander grinned and nodded. "Plus a huge orchard. Bigger than the one out front." He sat down, staring at Xander. "Dean and Sam already up and after that ghost downtown?"
"Sure are." He handed them both juice. "Draco, if you want tea, I've got water warming right now. Or there's coffee if you want it."
"Caffeine." He let him sip from his cup. "I added milk and sugar to mine."
Draco made an awful face. "It's a bit bitter."
"That's why I add milk and sugar." He grinned. "Tea's in cabinet beside you. Speed left some of his here. Mostly herbal but some nicer stuff too. Harry, the breakfast is cooking. Give it ten minutes then pull it out to cool long enough to cool. I'm still trying to get Ryan up." He went to his room.
Draco blushed. "He's with him too?"
"The book had things on protectors and keepers, remember?" Harry asked. Draco gave him an odd look but nodded. "Don and Danny are technically his keepers. Ryan, Eric, and a few others are protectors part-time and keep him from killing Danny and Don in bed."
"Could he?" he hissed.
Xander came out nodding. "Did it by accident to someone once. He wanted me to be bouncy and hyper and I was a bit too hyper." He poured coffee into another cup and walked it back to the bedroom, leaning down to kiss Ryan awake. "You're not sleeping beauty."
"I'm very pretty," he teased, smiling up at him.
"You are but you're not a princess. That's my job." He handed the laughing man his coffee. "The boys are up and breakfast is almost ready."
"Thank god I have today off," Ryan said, sipping the coffee. He showered then came out to find Xander cutting breakfast. He took his plate out back, going to warm up for their longer sparring session. Xander joined him. The boys decided to come out and eat with them. "Did you cover it or are the dogs into it already?" Ryan asked.
"They're in the living room. I petted them both. They played most of the night."
"A squirrel got into the practice room. They had a lot of fun with it," Xander agreed. He went to put the food in the fridge, shooing the dogs outside to help them. He checked on the ferrets. They were fine so the dogs got to be played with. "These are Hershey and Kiss, Draco."
"They're beautiful beasts." He let them sniff him and one tried to lap his face, making him lean backwards. "No, I don't need that."
"Down, Kiss." The dog sat, staring at him. "Good girl to follow orders." He petted her behind the ears. Hershey got between them for her petting time. "Greedy," he teased with a grin.
"Eat," Ryan ordered, picking up a toy and tossing it for them. They ran off to get it and bring it back to him. They liked fetch. Plus it let them eat between tosses. Even if Draco's toss was a bit limp-wristed and he only held it by two fingers, which he immediately wiped off on his pants.
"They don't slobber that much," Harry assured him. Draco glared. "They're pretty good dogs. They've used me as a pillow a few times. Oh, the cages? He's had them for years now."
Xander snapped his fingers. "That's right, long before the books came out, Draco. Beauty was a present."
"Pet whats?" he asked calmly.
"Four ferrets in their own kingdom."
Draco shook his head. "Everyone has to have something to pet I suppose." He went back to eating. He did look at them when he brought his plate inside. At least none of them were named after him. That was something to make him happier at least. He came out to find Harry on the far side of the picnic table while Xander and Ryan stretched. Draco sat down to watch. "Xander's really limber."
"It's something you build slowly up to. I can do a backbend but I have problems getting out of it without falling." He grinned. "They're very good at this." Ryan quit stretching and grabbed his sword, attacking Xander. Xander dodged and grabbed his blade with a wicked smirk. They were on and it was a beautifully deadly dance of blades and muscle. Harry made Draco close his mouth. "What Xander's doing is what he was teaching me." Draco swallowed. "He's a good teacher if you wanted to take lessons." Draco slowly shook his head. "That's up to you." He went back to watching, smiling when Ryan nearly got Xander but Xander ducked and swatted him on the butt instead, making him yelp. "Get him, Xander!"
"I plan on it. He has to do my hair if I win. I miss having it brushed by the furry ones."
"Tony called moaning about that," Ryan said dryly. He swatted Xander on the arm. "Bad you."
"Isn't that the definition?" he taunted with an evil smirk. He looked back as the gates opened and a car pulled in. "Your tribe cometh."
"Eww. I don't want think those thoughts about most of the police officers, Xander. Why is it I'm here and my mind turns smutty?"
"My excellent warping abilities," he said with a grin. He dodged behind the officer stomping over. "We're sparring, not fighting for real." Ryan dove after him and he ran off. Ryan chased, catching him but Xander wiggled free, making Ryan get off. "Ha! I win again! You get to do my hair."
The officer watched them. "Are you two insane!" he yelled.
"Bored," Xander said. "Why do you ask?"
"You're fighting with swords."
"I do that too," Xander agreed. "I helped teach Ryan. Why?"
"That's not normal!"
"I'm GHS," Xander said dryly.
"Never mind." He pointed at the two kids. "Someone in the neighborhood said they should be in school, sir?"
"They're both over age and home schooling this last year," Ryan said. "We've been making sure of it. Their normal school has been having issues like trying to kill the dark haired one."
"Uh-huh," he said patiently. Ryan pulled out his ID. "Oh, you're a CSI."
"Wolfe. I work with Caine."
"For some reason that doesn't really surprise me." Ryan glared. "You hear things about his lab." Xander glared, arms crossed over his chest. "Well, you do," he defended.
"The boys are perfectly fine and happy and so are we, Officer. You have a nice patrol. Okay?" he offered with a grin.
"Um, sure, but your neighbors still complained about the noisy house."
"We're not that noisy," Ryan complained. "I stay over now and then to use their movie room and big screen tv plus for sparring practice."
The officer just walked off shaking his head. He went back to his boss, putting down the call. "Do you know anything about them, swords, and CSI named Wolfe?"
"A lot. Harris is the one who knocked me out of the way of a bullet a few years back."
The officer stared at him. "He's weird."
"A bit. But for a level ten GHS, he's not bad. He spoiled us rotten for the longest time until the last chief got onto him about bringing us lunch."
The officer scratched his neck. "They were fighting with swords and two younger guys there."
"Harris trains new GHS sometimes. They come out after puberty. From what I've heard the dark haired one is eighteen. There's another?" He nodded. "Interesting. Did he look younger?"
"Then it's fine. It's either someone attached to that one or another student. It helps him be less bored. Bored is bad. Then they get people invading and things."
"There's still the complaint they were fighting with swords, which did not have anything on the blades to keep from killing someone, and that they're noisy."
"Harris knows a unique form of sword martial arts. Wolfe trains with him to keep him in shape. Somehow it helps wear out his hormones. As for noisy, ask the neighborhood security guys. They keep track of that. Which house got new people? He had one that went psychotic over a dead tree and arrested for burning it and trying to kill us. The one on the other side blew hers up and we found drug plants. The original owner of that one thought a slamming door next door was noisy and complained about that level of noise. She ended up shooting herself to make the noise go away. The one behind him used to belong to drug dealers."
He checked. "The one behind him probably."
"So new neighbors. They shouldn't be looking over his fence but you can go tell Flack in Homicide so he can mediate."
"He lives out there? On our salary?"
"He's Harris's protector and boyfriend." The officer groaned, going to find Flack to talk to him. "He'll learn or I'll transfer him down to South Beach for a while to get him used to squealing gay people."
Don came home that night, looking at the tired boys. "Video games?"
"Duel," Harry said. "Xander spanked us both."
"Good. Learn to get along." He looked around. "Where is Xander?"
"He and Ryan blipped out as Sam calls it. They both had their swords so there's probably a DPP officer somewhere swearing," Harry quipped.
"Probably. Did we see anything about these new neighbors?"
"They don't like gay people," Draco said. "The security guards warned us about that."
"Then they should move out of Miami," Don said dryly. "How long ago, Harry?"
"Twenty or twenty-five minutes."
"Sam and Dean?"
"Kicked us out of the kitchen."
"Hmm." He went to check, finding Sam and Dean at the alternate house gathering fruit. "Are you guys doing dinner?"
"If Xander isn't, we can," Sam offered with a grin. "Long day?"
"Very long day." He went to change, coming out to find Ryan stomping into the house. "Did you lose my boy?"
"No. He's out back swearing and throwing a fit. I'm getting out of the way by going to shower off the goo."
"Good." He walked out there, staring at his boy having a hopping and ranting fit. "Hey," he called quietly. Xander turned to look at him, looking pissed. "You okay? Need medical support from Adam?"
"No." He moved closer. "It was nasty and it tried to grope."
"C'mon, I'll help you shower it off. Sam offered to do dinner." Xander nodded, walking inside with his sword. The rest of the stuff floated in after them. Don stared at it. "He's mine and staying mine. Even if you are crushing on him for whatever reason." The stuff sat down and the feeling of being watched stopped. "We really need to protect the house against them."
Xander nodded. "I'm looking."
"Good." He stripped his boy and took him to the shower to help him bathe. It was sweet the way Xander let him stroke him with the sponge but wouldn't let him play with him this time. "You don't want worn out?"
"I need to help the boys."
"I can help the boys. So can Sam and Dean," he reminded him. Xander rested against his shoulder. "I've got you. It's been a long day. You can nap. We'll save you some dinner if we can defend it from Dean's galactic sized stomach." Xander grinned but let Don finish scrubbing him down and rinsing him. He walked them out to dry them off, taking Xander out to tuck him into bed. Danny was in there changing. "The last asshole was mean."
"Hmm." He took a kiss. "You nap. We've got dinner and stuff." He left to make sure about the dinner part, finding Sam cooking. "You can actually cook?"
"I lived off campus with my girlfriend," Sam reminded him quietly. Danny gave him a back pat. Sam grinned. "It's fine. It's been a long day it seems like."
"Get the sucker?"
"And talked the patrol guys out of busting us for digging them up to salt and burn. Then we almost got stopped for driving too fast. Fortunately a hot porsche roared past us so they chased him instead. It's been a long day."
"For us too," Danny agreed. "You two need help studying tonight?"
"We can amuse ourselves for hours on end," Harry promised.
"Good. We're all probably going to collapse in front of the tv."
Dean walked out of the alternate house and sniffed, then walked back into it and sniffed. He came out and opened the back door. "Boys, outside. Now." They walked outside.
"I feel less tired," Harry realized. He pulled his wand to check, making Draco nearly freak out. "To them we're a book, Draco. Calm down." He frowned. "Not a spell but I think it's a gas."
Dean came out to check the house, finding the air conditioning unit had something on it. "Sammy, get them out of the house with the pets," he ordered. Sam turned off the stove and moved everyone outside. Don had the ferrets. Danny had Xander. "Are you two feeling light headed or anything?" he asked, finding his cellphone to call it in. He had Horatio's number on speed dial still.
"No, I'm fine," Draco said. He looked at the ferrets. "What are their names?"
"Beauty is the white one. George is the normal ferret colored one," Sam said, letting him see. "The same demon that gave us two pregnant horses gave him two extra ferrets and that alternate house." Horatio drove in and parked, getting out to jog over to look at the canister. "Horatio, it made us kind of tired. The boys don't seem to be affected."
"Alexx is coming. Let her make that decision, Sam." He frowned, closing the valve and taking it off the unit. "That should help." He found another one and frowned. "This one has a timer."
Dean got him some tools, handing them over. "There you go. Don't blow up the house or Xander will pout."
"I'm sure he would," he agreed calmly. He got to work on that one while other officers pulled in. "Get that canister and this one to CSI immediately," he ordered. He freed the last one and handed it over. "The timer wasn't connected to an explosive." He nodded, taking them off carefully. He stood up, looking at the family. "Someone get Xander some clothes. Harry, get your owl."
"She's in a cherry tree." He pointed. "She's having fun hunting mice and small prey."
"All right." He called Steve. "Steve, Horatio. Someone tried to gas the boys' home. Yes, that one. No, I think he's letting the manager have the house on the farm and the one in the woods had a leak during the last storm. That is what I need, yes. Will that new loft hold all of them?" He smiled. "Didn't think so since it was intended for Mr. Wolfe. Please do and let me know where so we can have them escorted." The neighborhood security guys rushed in. He pointed. "Has anyone else found a canister on their air conditioner?"
"No, Lieutenant," the head guy said. "We haven't had any reports of anything like that. The only complaint we've had in days is the new back neighbor said Xander got a bit loud the other day but we're told he doesn't particularly like gay people."
"That's his problem. We were here first," Don told him. "Horatio?"
"You're going to a hotel tonight, Don. Steve's arranging it." That got a nod from the detectives. He looked at the guards. "We need copies of all security footage."
"Of course. We don't have one on his back fence anymore. It broke during that last bad storm."
"He had one arrested the other day for climbing over it," Harry offered. "But he was climbing over the fence this way instead of leaving."
"He really should have bought that house and turned it into a tree lot," Horatio decided. He went to check on Xander since Alexx wasn't there yet. "He's tired?"
"The last kidnaping took a bit out of him," Sam said quietly. "Not to mention earlier today the officer came to see why Harry and Draco are here plus to tell us that we shouldn't be sparring. Those sort of things. We weren't here during that part."
"I'll look into that." He smoothed a hand over Xander's head, letting Speed take him from Sam since Don and Danny were looking around the house to see if anything else was missing. "Get his SUV," he told Sam. "Put the boys, the pets, Xander and yourselves into it. Dean can drive the Impala. Don and drive his car." Sam went to do that. "Boys, follow Sam with the pets," he ordered.
"To the SUV," Don called. The dogs rushed that way, sitting at the edge of the driveway while it was backed up. He grinned at Horatio. "It's a useful command. He likes to take them to be groomed." He looked at the house then at him. "Tell us where. The boys can guard him for a few."
"Is anything missing?"
"Not that I can tell," Don said, holding up something. "But someone was here."
Horatio took the small device to look at. "Interesting camera setup." He put it into a bag, handing it to Speed. "Chase that."
"On it." He took it to look over, plus to see if the AV tech could trace the signal it was putting out somehow.
"I think we should talk to this new neighbor. See if he's aware of someone coming over his fence the other day." He walked off, Frank Tripp following him. Don couldn't because this was his house. Frank could bust the guy if he needed to be beaten or arrested. They worked well together.
"Dean, call Steve, find out where. Take the Impala to backup Sammy and the boys. Take them wherever. We'll meet you in a few hours." Dean nodded, jogging for his car, calling Steve on the way. Don went back to help search the house. Someone was going to pay for this. At the very least Xander was going to throw a fit that someone had violated their house again.
Draco looked around the suite, then at Sam. "My family's traveled extensively but never in this sort of luxury. Even when my father demands the best rooms in the establishment."
"This is Miami, Draco. We do things more flashy down here." He pointed. "You two have a double room. Please don't fight?"
"We can keep it inside for a bit," Harry promised. He let the ferret that was playing with him into the cage, making it squeak at him. "Sorry but the kingdom is at home and we're not. You can travel in this one."
"Like at the conventions," Dean agreed. He slid in water, food, and the litter box. It made them happy ferrets. "Sammy, did you turn off the stove?"
"Yeah, I did that." The boys went to check out the rooms. "Xander asleep?"
"Still. Snoring. I take it the last one was bad?"
"Probably. He and Ryan both took a shower." He looked around. "I'll never get used to this. They nearly fell over Xander."
"Think Xander owns some stock?" Dean teased.
"It's possible. He might've won it in a poker game." They laughed but made sure the suite was secure. Xander was napping. The boys were staring at the tv, watching some rap ho dance against a pole. "Ah, hos," Sam said dryly. "Real women aren't like that, guys. That's only to entice, not to touch or to have and hold."
"Some girls are that slutty and easy but you have to be careful not to get skanks," Dean agreed.
Sam snorted. "You'd know." Dean slugged him on the arm. "Ow! Jerk."
"Shut up, bitch. You're fine." He walked off to see who was coming up the hall. He peeked out then opened the door for Ray. "Hey."
"Hey. Xander all right?"
"Asleep. He was tired from the last problem."
"I heard that." He went to check on him, coming out to look at them. "Good enough. You guys settle in. Danny and Don'll be here soon. Tomorrow you'll get other protection."
"Why?" Dean asked.
"They found six cameras in the house." Dean glared. "We don't know who yet. Just keep it calm. Keep it in here if possible." They nodded. "Good. We're seeing if it's a fan or not. If not, then we'll defeat it faster. If it is, it might take some Xander-ism treatment."
"We'll do what we have to do," Sam promised. That got a nod and Ray left them alone. He looked at the clock then at the note Steve had left them. "Dean, he left us credit. Order room service if no one's bringing dinner."
"Sure." He looked at the menu, calling Don while he did that. "Steve left credit for dinner. Are you picking it up or should we order you something?" He smirked. "Really? That's interesting. Sure, I can do that. How long?" He nodded. "That's cool with us, Don. Be safe." He hung up. "Xander owns half of a restaurant up the street. Danny's getting dinner on his way over."
"When did he do that?"
"Steve suggested he invest and diversify." He smirked evilly. "He also owns a few of the shops we ended up at a lot."
"Very interesting strategy." He shrugged and they settled in to wait on Danny. The rap ho hour was apparently on because the next video had some scantily clad girl writhing on the hood of a Bently. "Shades of Whitesnake."
"Hey, that was a classic," Dean defended.
"The girl on the hood of the car? Kind of. The songs? Not so much," Sam countered.
"You two fight more than we do," Draco pointed out.
"They're brothers," Harry told him with a small shrug. "They seem to like it."
"Hey, it beats Gibbs' head smacks," Dean told them.
"True, that was not comfortable," Harry admitted, brushing down his hair again. "He was very stealthy for a man his age."
"In his case it's wear and tear, not age," Sam told him. "The same as Tony's just a few years older than Dean."
"Huh." He looked amused. "Why did they look so tired?"
"Cases," Dean said. "They're federal agents in an investigative agency. They've had some overnight cases."
Sam nodded. "Though I still wish they had brought Abby. You probably would've liked her."
"Probably," Dean agreed. "And Garcia. There's a woman who likes to spoil."
"Maybe the next pet Xander adopts will try to have her in his harem too," Sam said.
"Huh?" Harry asked.
"Somewhere when he was learning the dance stuff, Xander picked up a baby dragon he named Hubert. Hubert liked to adopt geeks into his harem when he was out and about. Don Epps, you met him at the convention, right?" Harry nodded. "His brother's a major math brain. Abby's a forensic goddess; she's a whole lab of what Horatio's people do all by herself. Garcia's a computer genius. Plus Hubert adopted one of Angel's geeks from the protection crew in LA right before the invasion. When he left, we got the whole harem together again for him and then we sent him to a dragon heavy world where Xander spotted a step-mom for him."
"Your dragons must be a bit different than ours. Our baby dragons bite and things."
"Xander hand-raised Hubert," Sam said dryly.
"Oh. That might explain it then."
Draco stared at Harry. "When have you seen a baby dragon?"
"Hagrid got given an egg our first year. That night we got caught out of bed we were sending him off to Ron's brother's preserve. Norbert flamed and bit and scratched all the time until we had to send him off."
"Do you enjoy getting into that sort of trouble, Potter?"
Harry shrugged. "I didn't have anything to do with it, Malfoy. We went to talk to Hagrid and found the egg hatching in his cauldron."
Draco rolled his eyes. "You're all loonies. I thought that was Ravenclaws."
Harry hit him on the arm. "I am not. If I was, I'd be giggling at Trelawany."
"Whatever as the host says," Draco shot back.
"You two are starting to sound like us," Dean pointed out. "Kiss and make up, boys."
"Eurgh," Harry complained, giving him a disgusted look. "No!"
Draco laughed. "The look on your face, Potter. Don't like boys? That's the rumor going around."
"I've only tried toys so far, Malfoy. That way I know what I'm doing but I have some control until I take that final step and it's the way my body prefers to be worn out."
Draco gaped. "You're still a virgin?" he demanded. "Why!"
"Not like I've had time to go find a girlfriend and shag her," he said blandly.
"You could have after the Triwizard ball."
"Um, no, I couldn't."
"Yes, you could have. She would have if you had asked."
"Malfoy, he's a bit developmentally behind due to some stresses on his body," Sam said patiently. "There's a reason why your hormones started a few years ago and his only started after the holidays last year."
Draco gaped at Harry. "Seriously?"
"Not my fault. My body's a bit screwed up about that sometimes."
"We noticed you looked gaunt a few years ago."
Harry nodded. "My cousin was on a diet so we all were on a diet."
"It was nice you've gained weight finally," Xander said as he walked out yawning. "What's going on now?"
"No idea yet. Danny's on his way up once he's got dinner from your place." Xander gave him a confused look. "The one you invested in."
"I don't get free food from them."
"I'm sure he knows that," Sam said, pulling him down to give him a cuddle. Xander snuggled in. "You should still be sleeping if you're this tired."
"I want to know what's going on."
"Danny should be here in another ten minutes. Go clean up," Dean ordered.
"Yes, big brother Dean." He trudged that way, stopping in the doorway of the bathroom. "Crappy tub." He shrugged and went in to use the toilet and splash his face with water anyway. He'd manage with the tub from planet plain people later. It only had one shower head in the shower. This was supposed to be a luxury suite. Yeah, he was spoiled.
He came out when the door opened, admitting Danny and Don. "Food," Danny said, holding up the boxes.
"Anything good?" Sam asked.
"Not bad looking. We'll have to see on taste." Don closed the door, checking the animals. "We all here?" Dean pointed at the bedroom. Don found his puppies on the bed. "Good." He took a kiss from Xander. "Morning."
"What's going on?"
"The neighbor out back had a shrine to you. Horatio had him arrested for questioning about the gas and the cameras. Last I heard he admitted to having the cameras planted but not the gas. They're going over his stored videos to see what he caught and if he caught the guy who broke in. Plus the guy who did the gas on the A/C unit."
"Crap. How many more days?"
"Two or three. We emptied the safe so Ryan and Eric could take the stuff and hide it for us until we can get back." Xander nodded, leaning against him. "Come eat then we'll go nap. Why are you so tired?"
"No clue, just am." He yawned again. Danny kissed him during it. "I needed that oxygen," he complained but he was smiling.
"He tastes like he's sick, Don."
Don tested his forehead. "You do feel a bit warm. Go tuck yourself in and we'll bring dinner in there."
"I'll be fine."
"Quit complaining." Xander snuggled into Danny's side to figure out which box was his. Danny handed it over with a smirk. "They said you liked it when I mentioned that you had recommended the place."
"I go in now and then for lunch to check the quality. He's paying me back for my investment."
"Good. It's a good plan, plus it gives it a safe place to rest. Steve set it up?" Xander nodded, opening his box to inhale the scent of the lasagna.
Draco opened his, looking at it. "What is this?"
"Shrimp with a light garlic sauce over pasta with some vegetables cooked with it."
Draco poked at a shrimp. "What animal is a shrimp?"
"You've never had fish and seafood?" Don asked.
"Father hated fish." He looked. "Is it good?"
"Fairly subtle," Sam told him. "It's good, if not I'll switch off because I've got pasta with plain veggies." Draco nibbled one and decided to keep it. Sam dug into his. "Thanks, Danny."
"Welcome, Sam. Dean, we know you can eat a whole cow so you got a steak." Dean beamed, taking his box. Harry got his. "Went for simple, Harry. Spaghetti bolignase."
Harry inhaled and moaned. "That smells good." He took his fork to dig in. He even moaned at it. "I need to finish learning how to cook. Can Xander do this?"
Don nodded. "He makes a really good version. The sauce is a bit less spicy."
"I'll ask him to teach me."
"You can cook?" Draco asked, looking confused.
"My aunt insisted that I do it instead of her," he said simply, stuffing his mouth again.
"Putting it nicely," Don snorted. Harry shot him a glare so he just grinned back. "Learn all you want about cooking from Xander, Harry. He's a good cook."
"He's a great cook," Dean told them. "I'm going to get so fat. Last time my jeans didn't fit for weeks of mediocre diner food."
"You could settle down to hunt a specific area instead of all over," Don reminded him.
"I'm not ready for that yet. We had to tell the other hunters that the demons wanted us because of Xander when they heard. We're the next best thing."
"I thought that was my spot," Harry teased.
"You're tied with us," Sam agreed with a small smile. "Anything going on good at home?"
"No," Draco said. "The Dark Lord's said to be furious about him leaving the realm. The light side's people are thinking that he won't be able to fulfill the prophecy."
"How long have you known about that?" Harry asked, staring at him.
"Since I was about ten and my father heard there was one. As an official, he could have it told to him but not claim it."
"I only heard about it in my fifth year," he complained.
Draco stared at him. "The headmaster is the one who banked it."
"I know that now." He grimaced. "There's been a lot of things I haven't heard about yet."
"Probably," Draco agreed cautiously. "Why ask me?"
"Because you seem to know more than I do."
"It's being a pureblood."
"It's more that people are keeping things from me," Harry corrected. "How else can you explain the dismal failures we've had in Defense teachers for the first six years?"
"Well..... I can't. Lupin was good even though he's damaged that way."
"Watch it," Harry warned. "He's my uncle."
Draco gave him an odd look. "Really?" Harry nodded. "Why?"
"He was one of my parents' best friends. Him and Sirius and Peter Pettigrew."
"That name I know well," he said dryly.
"You know Sirius as well since your mum's a Black."
"The shame of that lives on," Draco agreed. "Did he do it?"
"Figures the Ministry bollixed that up too." He shrugged. "Power hungry people."
"Yes, Fudge is. So are you half the time."
"Yes but now I have to consolidate that to keep my arse from being gifted," Draco said dryly.
"Get married," Danny told him. "Instant non-gifting if you use a way to prevent straying."
"Blood vows are abhorrent and not done by purebloods. Beyond that, I'd have to find a suitable wife or my father would simply kill her before she brought forth a defective Malfoy heir."
"Will your father survive the war?" Don asked him.
Draco slumped. "I have no idea. My mother seems to be going along with his idea of offering me to the highest bidder to raise us even higher up. She was hoping for nobility."
"I'm not taking you to bed," Xander said bluntly. Draco gaped. He shrugged. "Technically I do have a royal title that's well known throughout the demon world. Four or five actually from where I've destroyed things. Including a whole realm of vampires."
Draco's mouth fell open as far as it could until Harry nudged his chin. Then he swallowed. "How did that happen?"
"He wanted my ass. I used to hunt vampires. I staked him and took over the throne, fixed the problems of the realm, cured a small civil revolt, then walked away from it. The others I've mostly destroyed everything there but I was the last one to say I didn't want the place. So I ended up with it." He looked at Danny. "Remind me to auction those off sometime soon."
"I can do that," he agreed. He stuffed his mouth before he said anything. Harry, the plate saver, saved Draco's dinner from sliding off his lap. "He's really impressive when you mess up his hair," he said dryly. "They kept trying to."
Draco shut his mouth firmly and went back to eating. "I'll make sure my mother doesn't suggest you, Xander."
"I'd wear you out, kid." He smirked. "I do these two all the time." Don nodded, earning a pinch. "I haven't gotten to wear you out for weeks."
"Blame all the drunk teenagers who come down here to do stupid shit and die," Don reminded him.
"I could get that island back, make it a spring break haven." He grinned. "Make all the kids going to Cancun and things go there instead."
"No evil empire thoughts," Danny reminded him.
"Thank you," Don agreed. "And no more poker either."
"Even if we need to know who placed the cameras?"
"Let the lab do its job and then we'll see if you need to ask any thugs questions."
"Thugs?" Draco asked. "He associates with thugs?"
"I played poker with the underground in Miami and won quite a lot of money that they couldn't use for bad things," Xander said proudly.
Draco gave him an odd look, then looked at Danny. "It didn't impact your job?"
"We complained a lot and made him finally stop."
"Ares said I could go back when you guys got sucked into overtime again," Xander said with a grin.
"I guess that means one of us has to quit," Danny told Don. Who nodded. Xander pouted. "We'll figure it out, Xander. Finish up." Xander finished eating and let his boys take him to bed. "Night, boys."
"Night," Sam called with a wave. "You two go to bed when you're tired." They nodded. He looked at Dean. "That leaves one king sized bed for us or the couch."
"I'll take first watch and wake you up when I'm tired."
Sam nodded, heading for the bed once he had a shower. Harry and Draco watched a few more dancing girls then went to bed. Dean set the tv on VH-1 Classic to get his decent music back. He had no idea how anyone could stand rap music.
Xander walked into the station dressed up. He had nothing else since he wasn't allowed in the house yet. He walked up to the receptionist, earning a smile. "Is Horatio here? I need into my house again."
"Why can't you get into your house, Xander?"
"Someone tried to gas us the other night and had cameras in it."
She stared. "Did they find out who?"
"The cameras. Not the gas. I need to or else I've got to shop and Danny said no personal shopping until I clean out the closets again."
She dialed Horatio's phone, getting him. "Lieutenant, Xander is here wondering when he can get into his house." She listened. "He said Danny won't let him shop, sir." He said something else so she handed over the phone.
"It's my house, Horatio." He listened to the reasonable reasons. Then he huffed. "Fine, I'll go find them like I did the thieves who stole the stuff after the LA convention." He hung up and walked out shaking his head. He ran into Frank, patting him on the cheek. "Is the new chief going to let me spoil you guys with dinner?"
"Don't know yet. They're being picked this week. Where are you going?"
"To find out who tried to kill us." He slid into his SUV, heading downtown. He saw the cop car tailing him and snorted. "That won't work, Eric." He sped up through a light and turned down a street he didn't intend to take. Then he headed for another way to his favorite place for information. A small stall in the local Farmer's Market. He parked and got out, heading inside. He bought himself something to drink, casually heading that way. The owner of the stall saw him and his eyes went wide. Xander strolled over. The guy started to move. "You make me run, pounce, and get dirty in this outfit, you pay for the dry cleaning," he warned. The guy sat down, staring at him. "So, the gas attached to my A/C unit?" He sipped his tea.
"All I heard was an anti-gay thing and the neighbor behind you had a love/hate thing going. He'd love to hate you but you make him want to bend over and take it, but he hates that about himself."
"Hmm. So separate hate crime wannabes or together?"
"As far as I know separate. The neighbor may have heard something about the first people's plans but I don't think he was part of it."
"Interesting. Who are these first people?"
"That I have no clue about, Harris." Xander stared him down. "I don't. Honest."
Xander bought something small to nibble on. "Tell Horatio if you hear?"
"I can do that. Are you guys safe? I know you've got two new students in."
Xander nodded. "We're living in the lap of luxury but it has a semi-suitable bathroom." He took another bite and sipped his tea. "Anything else I should know?"
"I heard that the group may have an officer who's a member."
Xander nodded. "That makes a shitload of sense. Thanks." He kissed him on the forehead. "Play safely."
"I try." He watched the boy go. That was easier than he had thought. Harris hadn't even went to Fu's yet. Though, since he saw a crime lab hummer outside maybe he hadn't wanted to bust a more illegitimate source.
Xander walked into an office in the headquarters downtown, knocking on the door before opening it. The man inside stared at him in horrified shock. "If I give you information that an officer is part of a gay bashing group that put gas canisters on my A/C unit to kill all of us and my two very *normal* students, would you take them down or would you rather I beat the shit out of them and then make fun of them for being beaten by a gay man?"
Stetler cleared his throat. "Who? You have actual proof?" Xander walked in and shut the door, handing over the tapes. He listened to them, blinking up at him. "Are you playing poker again?"
"Non-thug but I'm not allowed to go back until my boys get overloaded on overtime again." He smiled sweetly. "My two students are very normal."
"Hell," he muttered. "This is enough to question."
"It appears the guy with the cameras knew."
"Why not take this to Caine?"
"It's one of his station's people. It'd create a conflict for Don. You're an ass but more impersonal. I haven't fed you like I did that assmuncher."
"I guess that's a good point. Did you know Messer got a present the other day to give you up?"
"Yeah, he told me about the box of buffalo steaks." Stetler shuddered. "And the life size blow up doll someone left in his locker that Horatio thought was a prank."
"Let me look into it."
"I'd like to go home by tomorrow or else I've got to shop and my boys don't want me to."
"If I can, Harris."
"Thank you." He walked off, putting on his sunglasses once he was outside. Dean was leaning against his car. "I found who was doing it and turned it in."
"Thankfully we have the GPS chip on your hair things." Xander just grinned. "We're out at the farm."
"I could like that but I'm not really dressed for riding."
"You'll figure it out, Xander." They got in and he drove him that way, letting Xander stop to pick up something at a store. He came out wearing a skin-tight leather outfit and new boots. "There's no way you can bend over in that."
"It's meant for bending and groaning into." He let Dean feel the sleeve. "It's very thin."
"That'll keep you from sweating to death." He drove them out there, mentally shaking his head. Xander found some of the strangest stuff at kink shops. They parked and got out, watching as Draco nearly drooled on himself when he saw Xander. "He couldn't ride in what he was wearing," he said dryly.
"Do you have any circulation in that?" Harry asked.
"It's very thin, supple leather," he said with a smirk. He let Harry feel. "See?"
"It's nice but probably a bit warm down here. Steve has the pets before you can ask."
"That's fine. Pride!" he called. His horse came trotting up. "Wanna go for a ride, big guy?" His horse nearly nuzzled him off his feet. "Let me get your tack. Dean, Sam, take Duchess and Countess. Both Princesses are better trained and I doubt Draco can ride."
"Yes, Xander," they agreed. They walked the horses back to the barn, getting them saddled no matter how much Duchess didn't want to be ridden today. Sam took her because he was a bit lighter. Dean got Countess. Harry and Draco got the saddled Princesses. They rode off into the woods, Sam moving up beside Harry while Dean got Draco to help him.
"Relax," Dean ordered quietly. "She's an experienced war mare. I learned how to ride on them too. So did Harry." Draco nodded. "Relax your hands. Her mouth is sensitive to the bar behind her teeth and you're pulling her head back." Draco relaxed his grip on the reins, letting the horse guide him. "Good job. Now, speed up a bit?" Draco gave him a horrified look. "It's fine. Do what Xander's doing, Draco." He watched him then Dean nudged Princess on the side, making her move into a trot. Draco refused to admit that he squeaked. "Up and down, kid." Draco did that, and it was more comfortable once he was in the rhythm. "Good job. If we speed up more, just go with the motion. No posting then." Draco nodded quickly. "Good. Harry, you good?"
"We're fine, Dean." He grinned. "I'm finally getting used to it."
"Good job," Sam agreed. "Dean and I both spent our first few post-riding times trying hard not to sit." Harry laughed. "Really." He sped up to match Xander's speed. Harry squeaked as Princess sped up. Draco nearly squealed. "Just relax, Draco," Sam ordered. "People did this for centuries and I'm sure there was a knight or someone in your past."
"Not in quite a while. My family likes being dark little blighters."
"It makes the hair stand out more," Dean joked.
Draco glared at him. "Not my fault both my parents are blonds."
"Nope, we don't get to pick our parents." He nodded. "Relax your back before it starts to ache." Draco finished relaxing, letting the horse guide him. "If she jumps, follow along," he ordered. "Go with the motion." Draco nodded quickly. He got to snicker when Harry yelped in fear when his horse jumped a log. His own detoured thankfully. It was good to get out of the hotel.
Steve walked up to Don's desk, handing over the dog's leash. "Kiss is a pervert. She tried to climb into my date's dress with her." He walked off shaking his head.
Don looked at his dog. "Was she at least pretty, Kiss?" His dog lapped and barked, wagging her tail once she was sitting again. "I guess we'll train you away from girls. Lay down." She laid down, watching those around him. "Good girl." He tossed down a chip he had been nibbling on and got back to work. "Where's the other mutt?"
"Probably better behaved?" Frank guessed.
"Possibly." Kiss jumped up and growled at something, making them look at the empty spot. "Hmm. What's wrong, girl?" It lunged and someone yelped, becoming visible. "Willow Rosenburg. Why are you here and being invisible?"
"We felt Xander going across realms. I was hoping he wasn't stolen again. I was just checking on him." She let the dog sniff her but it was still growling. "Chill, doggy. I'm a nice people."
"Down, Kiss." She sat, still watching her. "She's very protective of Xander."
"I'm sure she is. Is Xander all right? He's not at home. There's actually dust."
"We had to evacuate for a few days because someone put some gas on the A/C unit."
"Any idea who?" she asked.
"Hate crime gone wild," Frank said. "Aren't you still wanted on a few crimes?" She squeaked and disappeared. Kiss growled and moved closer, grabbing something in her teeth and pulling. Willow reappeared and had to let go of whatever she was pulling on. "Shoo, Rosenburg. We've got Xander quite well."
"Fine. Can I meet his new students since they reek of magic?"
"Nope," Don told her. "We're making sure they don't get addicted to their powers or anything."
"Fine." She disappeared and the dog laid down, chewing on the thing she had stolen. Don traded it for another chip, tossing it at Frank. Kiss got up to sniff Frank but he only handed over a cookie. The dog was happy and went back to guarding the daddy.
Frank looked at the thing. "Looks like a little carved statue." He covered it and went invisible. "Now I get it." He put it into his desk but it went invisible. He took it out and walked it off to Horatio. "Here, Rosenburg gave it to Don when Kiss stole it." He walked off again.
Horatio noticed the dog. "Kiss, what are you doing here?" He let the dog sniff him and get a few ear scratches. "Go back to daddy, Kiss." The dog sniffed but followed Frank back, Horatio following to make sure he was all right. "Why is the dog here?"
"Steve said she tried to nuzzle into his date's dress," Don said with a grin. "You cover it, you go invisible."
"Good to know."
"Kiss sensed her and growled until she became visible. Then when she supposedly disappeared," Frank told him.
"Even better. Good girl, Kiss." He petted him again. "You could take her back to the hotel, Don."
"No one's there. Sam left a message saying they were headed for a ride."
"I suppose that's reasonable then. Hopefully we'll know soon." He spotted Rick Stetler waiting. "She needed her father. Is there a problem, Rick?"
"I know a bit more about who put that gas canister on the air conditioning unit." He held up the transcripts of the tapes.
"How did we find this out?" Don asked.
"He said if you did it, it might look bad on you since the person he thinks it was has been fed by him a number of times."
"I see," Horatio said, taking the folder from him to read over. He grimaced. "That is very good to know. Thank you, Rick. I'll handle it."
"If that's true, it's my job."
"You can both do it, just don't make the dog growl at you again," Frank complained. Kiss was staring at Stetler like he was a steak. "Go lay down, dog."
"Kiss," Don ordered, patting his leg. Kiss ignored him and went to sniff this new person, then attached herself to his leg.
"Get off me," Stetler growled. Kiss growled back and humped harder. "Flack!"
"Kiss, get off him!" he snapped. His dog slunk back. "I know you're fixed so what was that? And for that matter, you're a girl, you don't hump legs." He looked at Stetler. "No clue. Sorry. I know very well she's fixed. She was fixed when we got her from the pound."
"Take her home."
"We're in a hotel." Stetler stomped off. "Really sorry!" he called, shrugging a bit at Frank's amused look. Horatio was trying hard not to laugh. He looked at his dog. "Did he smell like a bitch in heat?" he teased quietly, making Horatio and Frank both break and walk off snickering to find that officer. He loved his dogs. Xander would get a kick out of this story.
Speed and Eric walked over, looking at the dog. "You have bad taste, puppy," Speed told her, giving her a pet. "You should head home, Don. The new chief is in."
"Not my fault we're in a hotel."
"Good point," Eric said.
"Plus she can drug sniff. She's in training."
"If you can make it fly," Speed offered. "Horatio?"
"Getting the officer who was involved in the gas thing."
"Good. How did we find out?" Eric asked. "I tracked Xander to a farmer's market for lunch."
"He's got a contact in there that used to be an undercover officer," Don said. Eric slapped himself on the head. "Let me take her outside to water the bushes." He got up and his dog bounced up, looking attentive. "Let's go outside, Kiss." He walked his chocolate lab that way. The new Chief ran into him in the entryway. "Sorry, but with the gas canister someone put on our air conditioner we're in a hotel for a few days. She's doing good with her drug sniffing training though. She's been very good so far with me, sir." He let the dog outside, watching her sniff and take off after an officer. "Get off him!" he yelled. The dog knocked the officer down and growled at his throat. One of the K-9 officers rushed out. "She's in training. Like Spots was. What's the command?" he asked, unable to pull Kiss off him.
"Off, Kiss," the officer commanded. The dog sat down beside him. "Good girl. Take your master to play with you."
"She's learning drug sniffing. Hershey is learning explosives sniffing," Don offered.
"We can check him for it, Flack. She's nearly as good as Spots was. Take her to play." Don took the dog off to the side of the building to play with her, making her a happy puppy for doing her job well. He patted the guy down, putting things aside. Horatio came out to look at the stuff. "Sir, Kiss pounced and growled in an appropriate manner." His own dog was growling lightly as well.
Horatio pointed. "That's a det cord."
"He said this one was drug sniffing."
"It's possible they've cross-trained them a few times. It's another matched set."
"Kiss is a pretty dog." He stood up, hauling up the officer. "Want him, Lieutenant?"
"Please. Mr. Wolfe, please bag this for me while we find out why he had det cord?"
Don brought Kiss back, watching her sniff the guy's shirt. He was bouncing up to sniff him then sitting down. "That's very helpful, Kiss. Good girl." He scratched her ears, getting a doggy groan and a loving pet again. "Should we do a building search?"
"Now," Horatio agreed. The K-9 officer and his dog headed to do a perimeter sweep. He looked at the officer. "I don't recognize you and your ID pin is the wrong color." He walked him inside. "Excuse us, Chief, but Kiss found him with explosives on him outside, hurrying out of the parking lot. People, we're doing a building search," he announced. "Kiss found det cord on this one." The officers moved to handle it while he made the man sit in the nicest interrogation room. "This way if we get blown up, so do you." He smirked. "Unless you tell me where they are."
"I'm not telling you anything!"
"I'm sure you're not. With how sweaty you are, I'd say we have a timer situation."
"You'll die too!" he shouted.
Horatio nodded. "My lover will grieve but we'll be fine until he follows." The man looked disgusted. "Now, where are they before *you* die."
"I'm willing to die for what I believe in."
"Me too, young man." He smirked, sitting down across from him. The man started to sweat worse. "Where are they?"
"The...the lab stairs and a few other places! I can't disconnect the timers."
"Found seven," Frank shouted.
"Is that all of them?" Horatio asked him, seeing the panicked look. "Frank, at least one more."
"Two," he said quickly. He got up and Frank took him to point out the areas. They got the other two out and Bomb Squad got them disabled for him.
Horatio smirked. "Very nice work, young man. Now, why are you planting bombs in my crime lab and their homicide department?"
The man started to stutter.
Frank swatted him on the back. "You're not a cranky Oldsmobile. Spit it out."
Horatio smirked. "That's true, he's not." He pointed at one of the K-9 officers, getting a nod. "He was the one who planted them." The dog took his cue from the handler, starting to growl. The man nearly pissed himself. "Why were you doing this? You can tell me or you can tell your maker after the dog rips out your throat. Your choice," Horatio said calmly.
"Still not an Olds," Frank said dryly. The dog growled louder and moved closer, ready to strike.
"To take out all the gays! You're corrupting the good people of Miami!" he shouted, backing away. "We can't have you here!"
"Some of us have the highest solve rates in the city," Don said dryly. "Good job, Cooler." He tossed down a piece of hamburger from the one he'd gotten his dog from the machine in the break room. The handler smiled. "Had to get Kiss a treat. She's a good dog. So's yours. Kiss, you're still fixed," he warned. Kiss was sniffing tails. "Sorry, she tried to copulate with Stetler a few minutes before she found that guy."
"She was redeeming herself from the disgusting act," Frank said dryly. He petted the dog. "We like you, Kiss." The other dog got one too. "Good poochy." The handler smiled, walking his dog off. He looked at the idiot. "You know, plenty of us here aren't gay. Though he's right, the gay officers do have a lot better solve rate."
"They're still dirtying the system! That one lives in vile *sin* with his lovers!"
"You know what? Can I let Xander hormone him before he goes to jail, boss?" he asked Horatio with a grin.
"That might be considered cruel and unusual punishment, but I'll suggest it, Don." He handed him over to Stetler. "I doubt he's one of us."
"I don't care. He leads back to the other one probably. We found two other officers who had similar problems because they're in a gay thing." He walked him off. Kiss was watching. "Flack, take your heathen beast back to the hotel," he snapped.
"Can't for hours yet, Stetler. Sorry." He looked at Horatio, who shrugged. "I still say she's a good dog." He fed her the rest of the hamburger. His dog loved him and was such a good girl she deserved the treat.
The new Chief of Police came out and cleared his throat. "We found them all I'm hoping?"
"All he admitted to planting," Don agreed. "Cooler went Cujo on him to make him confess. Stetler walked him off."
"Excellent work by the dogs. Why was he doing this?"
"He was gay bashing on a larger scale," Speed told him. He looked at Horatio. "You're so getting it later," he mouthed. Horatio just slid back into his sunglasses and walked off. He looked at the Chief, who looked horrified. "What?"
"I see. I've heard about your work with the lab." Speed just smirked back. "We'll be discussing things later once this mess is cleaned up so we can all get back to work."
"Bomb Squad has to check everywhere then let us in," Speed reminded him, heading off after his husband to chew him a new one for that gambit. He was *so* getting paddled once they got home.
"Hey, Chief, my boyfriend Xander wanted to know if you'd let him start feeding us again. It really improved morale and he's kinda bored now and then at home with only the new students to cook for."
He looked at him. "He did what?"
"Xander brought in lunch a number of times," Frank said. "Sometimes just for the lab and Flack here. Sometimes for the lab and detectives. A lot of times for the guys on patrol. He's damn good at spoiling us. During the rebuild he made us all homemade hot pockets since we were having a busy day. Made nine dozen so we all got at least one."
The chief nodded. "Is that going to hamper efficiency or work?"
"We take a break to nibble but most of us eat at our desk anyway," Don pointed out. "It gave him a way to spoil the department."
"I'll consider it and talk to the former Chief."
"That's cool. He knew and liked it most of the time unless he was being fussy about stuff."
"Then I'll definitely ask him. Your ...boyfriend is a good cook? Like a chef?"
"No, my boy's housebound because he's GHS," Don corrected. The chief whimpered. Don smirked. "Now and then he gets really naughty but most of the time he's a spoiler."
"I'll ask and see if there were any problems. Does everyone know about your boyfriend?"
"Anyone here not realize Xander's mine?" Don called.
"No, we all knew," one called back. "Did you know he went to a kink shop earlier with the dark haired shorter one that he used to teach before heading to the farm in some tight leather thing?"
"Figures. We're not in the house thanks to someone trying to poison us all. We won't let him shop."
The officer snickered. "You're going to be lucky if the horse doesn't take him this time, Flack."
"Eeeh, we'll be fine. We always manage to get him back somehow." They all smiled at that.
"How bad was it?" Frank asked. The officer brought over his phone, letting him see the picture. "Big fan?" he teased.
"I want my girlfriend to get one." He let Don see, watching him look amused. "They headed for the farm."
"There's no way he can ride in something that tight." He called Sam's phone since Xander's was on the charger still. "Sam, me. Is Xander all right?" He listened to him panting. "Why are you ... Need help?" He nodded. "Figures. Someone told me about that. Oh, not his outfit; they're after you and Dean. Need help? Ryan's here." He nodded at Ryan, who came over to listen to the other side of the phone. Then he walked off to get into his locker. Even if the Bomb Squad guys didn't like it.
"Gotta go save Xander and his students," he said. They let him past. He got into his locker, coming out with the sword. He looked up, praying to Ares as he activated the little necklace that would take him wherever Xander was fighting. He waded into the uneven fight even though Xander was winning. It never hurt to make it more even. One berserker against four demons was just unfair to the demons. Especially when it was Xander. They came out and reappeared at the station a few hours later. "The horses got put up?" he asked the person in there. Danny nodded slowly. "Good. Draco, bathroom is behind you if you want to puke." He went to do that. Harry too. "Dean, Sam, clean up and we'll head home. Where's the cars?"
"The Impala should be outside," Sam said weakly, sitting down.
"Thank you for warping the spell so that it wouldn't land on top of something," Don called into the locker room. "It nearly hit H's hummer."
"Oops," Dean said, shrugging a bit. "We're exhausted."
"We'll bring the Impala home, Dean," Danny promised. "I'll drive your baby and you can ride for now." Draco came out brushing back his now shoulder length hair. "Long trip?" he asked.
"Yup," Ryan agreed. He looked at the boys. "That's why you want to keep out of backlog." They both nodded hard at that. "And why you want to date someone who has some self-defense skills, guys." He walked them out. "The SUV here?"
"Nope. At the farm," Don admitted. "All the horses are up. They're too used to Xander disappearing. They didn't even call when they came back without people this time. Just a 'yeah, it happened again, Pride's pissed' comment then they hung up."
Ryan led the boys out, letting Dean and Sam follow behind them with Xander. Who was nearly asleep on Dean's shoulder. Dean was almost sleepwalking too. Frank's 'aww' got echoed a few other times. "Had to rescue," he said whenever they ran into funny looks.
"Xander needs his own commando unit," one officer joked.
"I think that's why he has those two tall older students," another joked back. "Plus Wolfe."
Eric walked past them. "He has more than that to rescue him. Wolfe wanted a long lunch this time," he said sarcastically. "And Xander can afford a team of commandos for many years to come." They blushed, ducking away from him. "I might suggest that though. It'd help Harry." He went back to work, watching them leave out the window.
Danny got Dean into the passenger's seat, taking the keys out of the trunk's lock on his way around. He watched Ryan get the boys and Sam into his car. Xander was standing outside making small pathetic noises. "Xander, into the Impala," he said gently. Xander opened the door and didn't seem to see Dean but he crawled into his lap to snuggle and sleep that way. "Okay. I doubt we'll get busted for seat belt law abuse." He put his on anyway and started the car, admiring the engine. Dean's baby ran great. He knew the only reason he was getting to drive was Dean was exhausted enough to sleep and so was Sam. Maybe he should talk Xander into getting one of the newer Impalas. He backed out carefully and headed off. He did get pulled over. The officer walked up to the side of the car, staring at him. "They're exhausted."
Danny pulled out his badge. "It's the one on the bottom's car. The one on top is my boyfriend. They were rescued again."
"Oh, that must be Harris then." Danny nodded, putting his ID into his shirt pocket. "I guess there's no way to use the belt around them. Looked kinda funny to me, that's why I pulled you over. Making sure they weren't drugged."
Xander lifted his head, blinking at him. "We just got back from the bad demons who wanted to own me instead of dealing with the bad officers who wanted to kill us because we're gay. Can I nap now?" he asked, still sounding tired, tiny, and pathetic.
"Sure, you nap, sir. Right home, Messer."
"Going to the hotel. Gay bashing idiots tried to gas us in the house," he complained, restarting the car and pulling out.
The officer, who was a half demon, considered that, calling his wife on the way home. "Dear, do we know anything about demons who want Harris and gay bashing officers who wanted to kill him?" He listened to the newest news. "No wonder he and Winchester looked wasted and cuddly. Thanks, dear. I'll be home on time for dinner." He hung up and went back on patrol.
He had no idea his wife would tell her father, who would tell someone else. Eventually those gay bashing officers would make good toys for those who wanted Xander safe and theirs.
Danny and Don came in the next morning, finding Stetler pacing while laying in wait for them in the lobby. "What happened this time?" Danny asked.
"Half of the officers we suspect of being in that group that put the gas on your house seem to have disappeared."
Don blinked a few times. "Wasn't us."
"I didn't figure it was. I need to talk to someone and I don't have a calling stone anymore." Don handed over his. Stetler stomped off to call one of the DPP officers. Someone had to get his officers back so he could send them to jail.
Danny walked up to where Horatio was watching outside. "The demons took on the gay bashing guys?" he asked quietly.
"Apparently last night a good many of them were taken from their homes." He looked at him. "They were not happy by what little was found."
"Huh. Stetler's got Don's calling necklace."
"Hopefully this will be solved soon. I doubt Xander would like to see them kept."
"No, probably not," he agreed. He called the hotel room, getting Draco. "Can you tell Xander that his admirers got the idiots who gassed the house? That Stetler wants them back. Thanks, Draco." He hung up. "He'll tell him when he gets up. He's still exhausted from yesterday. Oh, Wolfe's on the couch in the suite."
"That's fine. You should be able to go home tonight. The neighbor in the back who was a fan is now leaving. It was part of the deal he took for no jail time." He walked off smiling. This situation might work out all right after all.
Danny looked up, sending a prayer to Ares to please make Strife quit getting so high off their lives. Then he went to work too.
Draco hung up and looked around. "Xander?" he called, walking toward their bedroom. He paused when he saw the naked, sleeping, butt-up body on the bed. "Um, okay."
"What?" Xander mumbled.
"Danny called, said that the demons have the ones who gassed the house. That someone named Stetler wanted them back?" He left in a hurry, closing the door. He had seen things he had not wanted to see. He had no idea why Xander's butt had a spot of bright purple. He had no need of those facts or ideas.
Harry looked over at him. "Xander naked?" Draco nodded quickly. "He does that sometimes around the house too when he's too backed up to realize it."
"We had to stop him from going shopping that way a few times," Dean said from his perch in front of the tv. Someone knocked. So he got it since he was the awake adult right now. "Hey, Steve." He let him in. "What's up?"
"Sleeping naked. Made Draco blush."
"Why was his arse purple?" Draco blurted, then covered his mouth.
"Have to guess, but probably a butt plug," Dean told him. He looked at the blushing financial manager. Draco went to hide in the bathroom. "So, anyway, we should be able to get back into the house soon."
"Good. Because we're going to switch his accounts soon again."
"No clue. The new person at the bank is doing it."
Xander wandered out, running into the door frame on the way. He blinked at Steve. "Do not touch the money. That guy's a bad demon and how they're doing it to me this time." He wandered past him, going into the bathroom. Draco squeaked but Xander ignored him and turned on the shower before getting inside. He blinked as the warm water hit him. "Draco, did you wake me up with some sort of news?"
He cleared his throat a few times so he wouldn't sound squeaky. "Um, the idiots who gassed the house were taken by demons? Someone named Stetler would like them back."
Xander looked up at the ceiling. "Give them back or I'm coming up there!" he shouted. "After two six-packs of Mountain Dew."
"That's evil to even the mean demons," Dean called into the bathroom.
"Then I'll dance and make all of you so hard after I apply a cockring spell so you can't ever get off or have spawn that I'll have to deal with." He felt the tension around him ease. "Ah, that's better," he sighed, falling back asleep in the water.
Draco hurried out once he was presentable again. "He's quite odd."
"He's half asleep and backed up, Draco. We've seen worse. He nearly enslaved a whole block once." He heard the snore and sighed, looking around. "Sammy, your turn. He's asleep in the shower."
Ryan groaned but got up, heading in there. "Let me since I'm his backup protector." He shut the bathroom door so he could pee for a few minutes then he stripped so he could climb in with Xander. He nuzzled his back.
Xander gave a weak swat. "Sleeping," he mumbled into the tiles.
"You're in the shower."
"Sleeping," he said more firmly.
Ryan leaned against his back, stroking his cock. Xander purred, staying asleep until he got off. Then he went limp, making Ryan carry him to bed. Steve and Draco both blushed at them since they were naked. Ryan went to take his morning shower so he could get back to work. He was clearly late since the Today show was going off.
Draco shook his head. "Are they all nudists?"
"Now and then everyone is," Dean pointed out.
"You don't get naked with your girls?"
"In the school?" he asked, looking horrified. "We'd freeze to death and half the time we're somewhere we might get caught. Bloody hell no! I don't want Snape to find my naked arse anywhere."
Harry looked over. "He's right, even if I did go out with the girls in the school you never have enough time to properly get naked and play." He went back to watching tv.
"See, even the virgin knows that."
Dean patted him on the shoulder. "He'll figure out what he wants soon enough, Draco. At his level, he might have to have a harem." Harry was blushing. Draco was giving him a horrified look. "Unless he dated and slept with one who had the same sort of problem to wear them both out. That's how Don does it with Xander and how Ray does it with Adam. As for getting naked in the school, you need to be a bit more crafty, Draco. How hard is it to hide a room for an hour?"
"They'd know. They have spells set up for that."
"Use the room of requirement," Harry offered. Draco glared at him. Harry grinned. "It might do it. It's to handle whatever you need."
Draco shivered. "That's a truly naughty thought."
"It can't be entered once you're in there. Be careful though, the Headmaster has put a portrait in there the last time I was in there."
"I'll remember that." Ryan came out and went to get dressed on Xander's room, only wearing a towel. Xander wobbled out again. "Not this again. Xander.... why is that area pink?"
"Cockring," Dean told him. "Xander, you're naked. Go back to bed, Xander." Xander barked. "I know, I'm treating you like the dog. Go back to bed anyway and I'll get you breakfast." Xander blew a kiss and wobbled back that way, running into the door handle this time. He grunted. The others winced.
Ryan tucked him in, giving him a kiss. "You rest as long as you want. Dean's here with Sam to guard you, Xander." Xander made kissy faces until he got another one. Then he walked out adjusting his gun. "I'm off to work."
"Don't expect a kiss with tongue, Ryan. I'm not your type," Dean taunted with an evil smirk.
Ryan grabbed him to kiss. "Sure you are, Dean. You're adorable and you'd look cute in heels and thigh highs once we shaved you." He walked out happier.
"I didn't think Xander was that capable of warping people," Steve said. Dean walked off shaking his head. He needed some time in the gym to take that thought of his head. "I'll deal with the bank stuff and the house, Dean. Go rest. The boys can do homework for a bit or something."
"I'll do that after I teach him to scry," Harry offered. Steve nodded leaving them alone. Harry took Draco to the bathroom, running the tub full of water. He said the spell so Draco could hear. "Now, focus on someone."
Draco concentrated, focusing on Snape. "He's been captured?"
"That's an auror facility," Harry said with a scowl. "I know Xander told them." He leaned down, whispering to the water. Draco leaned down to watch him. "He can hear it but it's very faint."
"I remember hearing that. You were scrying me?"
"It was the day I learned. I was testing the limits." He grinned and whispered something else. Snape mumbled and the handcuffs came off. He looked at his wrists for a minute. "He's go tot be exhausted."
"Probably. The aurors aren't nice," Draco admitted. He said his own message, getting a look up and a nod. "Go there."
Harry said something else, making Snape sneer but pop out. "You didn't need a wand to apparate. You needed to channel the power. I figured he could do it," Harry explained.
"Nearly brilliant." He stood up. Harry canceled the spell. "So you've done that a lot?"
"Now and then I check on Ron and Hermione. She's starting to pull her hair out about all this."
"If she saw you on the horse yesterday she might change her mind," Draco said dryly.
"She's not my type," he said, heading back to his tv watching.
"Why are you doing that? You grew up muggle," he sneered.
"Not like I got to watch it there."
Draco stared at the back of Harry's head. "I thought all muggles had those appliances rotting their brains."
"The house had one. I wasn't allowed near it."
Draco stared at him in confused. "What?"
"I'm not going to tell you, Draco."
"Whatever," he decided, going to check on Sam. He was still asleep and snoring too. "Should we order breakfast?"
"Maybe. I'm not sure."
"We could go out for breakfast. No one here wants us."
Harry gave him a pointed look. "You're still broadcasting." Draco huffed off to handle that. Harry got ready since Draco never needed more than two minutes anyway. All those times in closets were apparently bad for him. He leaned into Sam's bedroom, then came in to steal Xander's wallet.
"What are you doing?" Sam demanded quietly.
"Getting money for breakfast. We'll be right back. Xander's asleep. We'll go across the street and be right back."
Sam opened one eye. "You have two and a half minutes." Harry nodded, hurrying out with Draco. Sam started to get up but his head hurt so he was going to stay there. "I thought the visions were done with," he complained. He was drifting when he heard the door slam. "Dean, the boys went for breakfast."
"I got 'em," he assured him, smirking at the little brats. "Go sit and do something less useful for humanity."
"We were getting breakfast," Harry defended, looking cute and innocent.
Dean growled. "You could have asked."
"You were busy. Sam's got a headache, and Xander's asleep. We can run across the street, Dean. Really," Harry tried. "Not like we're backed up like Sam is."
"Point. Not much of one though. We're going to be working on your self-defense all week long, Harry Potter."
"Yes, Dean. Draco's too?"
"If he wants." He went to check on his little brother. "Sammy!" he said loudly.
"Fuck off. Visions still hurt," he mumbled.
Dean pried one of Sam's eyelids up to look into it. "Anything good in there?"
"No. All bad things. The demons who have the gay basher's union are happily showing them why they should be gay. They're going to need counseling. Can you let go now?" Dean let him go with a smile. "Beyond that, I saw a brunette girl who looked pretty rough. Xander seemed to know her, I had a flash of them as teenagers."
"I'll ask if I can get him up. Want coffee or food?" Sam went green. "Want some of the vicodin in the med-pack?" Sam nodded. "Let me do that." Harry brought it in. "Thanks, Nurse Harry."
"Welcome. I hate to see people suffer."
"Then don't look at the guys the demons have. They're all going to be begging to see het people who look human soon," Sam told him without opening his eyes. "Ask Xander who the hot brunette girl he was fighting beside is too. She's in trouble."
Harry went to wake Xander up. "Sam had a vision," he said when he got grunted at.
"Why do I need to know this?"
"Something about a brunette girl who you used to fight beside needing help?"
Xander lifted his head enough to turn it so he could look at him. "What?"
"That's what he said."
"Brunette girl, kinda hot. You knew her as a teenager on the Sunnydale crew," Dean said, leaning in the door. "She's getting out of wherever she is that's making her look rough and they're going to try to take her."
"Fuck," he muttered. "Call Angel and tell him they're going to attack Faith?"
"I can do that." He found Xander's phone and the number for out there. "Hey, Wesley, Dean Winchester. Yes, I know this is Xander's phone. We're back with him helping with some new GHS students. Sammy just had a vision about a brunette girl that Xander used to hunt with getting out of wherever she's at that's making her look tired and semi-wasted being attacked within a few days of getting out." He listened. "He said something about Faith and to call you guys." Wesley was verbally slapping himself on the head. "Yeah, apparently it'll be within a few days. She's still pale, kinda tired looking, and about half starved according to Sammy's vision. Oh, tell Angel that the gay bashing guys that the demons stole will need counseling if any from your end of the US got taken or show up there." He grinned. "Yes they did. Which is why Sammy has a migraine at the moment. Thanks, Wesley." He hung up. "All notified, Sammy. Try to come eat."
"Fuck off, Dean."
"We're related. Not happening. I changed your diapers."
Dean grinned. "That's what I used to say. You had some of the worst ass product ever, Sammy."
Sam got up long enough to slam and lock the door then went back to bed.
"I'm so glad I'm an only child," Draco said. "I'll have to make sure my future children are only children as well. That way they never have to have a talk like that." He ate a bite of his hashbrown, which was incredibly greasy and very strange.
Dean swatted him on the hair. "Once Xander gets up, you can get a haircut."
"I probably should. I look like a girl."
"You're too narrow to be a girl, not enough curves," Dean assured him.
"If you say so."
Harry came out of Xander's bedroom. "If you really want us to be less socially redeeming today, can we go to the beach? Draco can get a haircut on the way. We can get him shorts too. I can shop a bit thanks to Xander."
Dean considered it. "I might go for some bikini time, yeah. Hurry up." He took the wallet from Harry, counting out the cash. "Xander, taking the boys to the beach and Draco to get a hair cut." Xander got up and slammed the bedroom door shut, laying back down. "Okay, I guess that's fine with him. Hurry up." They finished eating on the way down to the car. Dean looked at Draco. "Xander does all the higher class shopping. It gives me hives so you're going to the mall with Harry." He got them into the car, heading to the mall he and Sammy liked best. Miami had plenty of them. He parked and got out, walking the boys inside. Right inside was a Regis salon. He smiled at her. "My nephew had a girl who liked his hair like this. We're introducing him to the beach later in hopes he picks up someone easier to deal with." The hairdresser giggled. "Can you fix that tragic mistake?"
"I definitely can." She led Draco back to her chair, putting the cape on him. "How do you usually wear it?"
"About at my ears."
She got a book, finding the one she liked. "That's pretty hip. You might need some gel but you should be able to do it."
"I slicked it back for years."
"Miami girls like to be able to play with it. Scrunch it between their fingers." She did that in his hair. "Let's trim it to about the right length then see." He nodded, letting her trim it down to something closer to Dean's haircut. She left a bit of length in the front to brush back when he needed to. "There, now use mouse to get it to softly wave." Draco brushed it back. "Just like that."
"They won't mind me fussing with my hair?"
"They shouldn't. We're used to pretty people down here." She trimmed his bangs a bit more, letting them feather off to the right. "That's a good look." He looked at himself. "Much better."
"I can learn to like this. How do I care for it? Mouse?"
"Just a dab of mouse now and then to make it go where you want it to." He nodded.
Dean paid for it and they went to Old Navy. Harry nearly shuddered. "I know, but it's cheap."
"The Gap?" Harry begged.
Dean relented and took them there. They had an outfit Draco could stand. Barely. Some sandals and they were ready to go. Draco changed and came out looking much more relaxed. Harry was happy. Dean could get out of the mall so he was happy. They went to the beach. Draco stared in awe at the girls jogging. Dean pulled him down onto the sand, handing over the bottle of sunscreen. "You'll burn if you don't use it."
Draco put it on absently. "Do all muggles wear those?"
"Only in Miami," Dean sighed, watching his own. He nudged Harry and pointed. Harry moaned.
Draco saw where he was looking and nearly swallowed his tongue. "There's no cloth."
"There's a bit," Dean said with a grin. "Those are called bikinis."
Draco hummed. "I could appreciate those." He got a good, long stare at the girls around him.
Danny walked up behind them, handing the boys sunglasses. "That way you don't get caught staring like virgins," he teased. "Dean, where was Xander?"
"In bed when we left. Sammy too."
"Sammy's still probably asleep. The dogs were pitifully whining at him so he was walking them then heading back when we showed up for lunch. Xander's not there and his new leather outfit is gone too."
"Don't know. Sammy had a vision about someone named Faith."
Danny nodded once. "Okay. We can handle that."
"He had me call Wesley to warn him."
"Even better. Thanks, guys. Don't get too burned out here. Dean, you're burning too."
"I'll be fine."
"Uh-huh. You'll still whine for hours. Put some on," Danny ordered. He left them alone to stare at the fake tits in tiny bits of bikinis. He found Xander's phone back at the house and called out there. "Hey, Gunn, Danny Messer. Yeah, Xander's boy. Is Xander out there with someone named Faith?" He listened to his confused sounds. "Sam Winchester had a vision and Xander's not here. Or his new leather hunting outfit or his sword. Yeah, that's what I'm thinking too. Dean said he called earlier. Talked to Wesley." Gunn yelled for Wesley, who told him what was going on. "So, Xander is there? That's good. Call when he pops back to this coast, guys. That way we don't go missing him again. Ryan's too tired to retrieve him this time. Thanks." He hung up and went back to work since the dogs didn't need walked and Sam was still there to guard them.
Faith looked startled when the guy in leather with long hair popped in behind her, his hair was obscuring his face so until he looked up she could only drool about his tight ass. "X?" she demanded. "What's with the hair?"
"Not you too," he said, scowling at her. "Leave my hair alone! It's bad enough Cordy went off on it all the time."
"Okay, I won't crack on the hair. Cute leathers."
Xander grinned. "Thanks. Had to buy off the rack suddenly. Someone tried to gas the house and I didn't have anything to wear to go riding."
She looked him over again. "Riding who?"
"Mostly at the time my horses but my boys do enjoy me in leather," he said with a smirk.
"You called me a boytoy often enough," he said dryly, making her shudder. He gave her a hug. "It'll be okay, Faith. There was a vision saying you'd be jumped today. I'm here to be your studly bodyguard."
"Can you actually use the sword?"
"Very well. I trained off realm at a temple of Ares and a few other places." Her mouth fell open. He grinned. "A lot has changed since high school."
"I can see that." He smirked. A demon walked up to them. "Whatcha want?" she asked.
Xander smiled, holding out a hand palm side down. The demon gripped it and nodded, babbling at Xander. "I'm here to guard her. You can tell the others attacking her is a very bad idea." The demon babbled something else, making Xander blush. "Thank you but it was only right since they stole me and my students." The demon nodded. "I'm glad your wife was pleased with the new nest because of it." He left them alone. "Sorry, he won pretty big the last time I had to fight myself out of somewhere. I had no idea someone had been taping it and took bets."
"Huh?" she asked.
He led her off to a bench since they were in a small park. He sat her down to fill her in on what had happened over the years. Leaving out the immortal part. She just stared in horror. He nodded at the end when she shook her head. She shook her head again. He nodded and grinned. "Yeah."
"Basically." He grinned. "So that's why I'm here to guard you."
"Okay. If you're sure you can use that thing."
"I do very well at it, Faith."
"Good." They looked up as a very tall demon lumbered their way. "Are we in the demon part of the city?"
"Yeah, but they're usually nice." She looked at him. "Only twenty percent are the sort that have to be taken out."
"Good to know." She looked up at the really large demon. "Did you need something with me or him?"
The demon bent down to look at Xander, squinting some. "You are Roth's toy."
"I'm no one's toy but my own," he corrected. "Roth went bye-bye when he wanted me and tried to snatch me."
The demon stared at him. "You are the Pouty One." Xander nodded, smirking some. "Well met, Hunter." He patted him on the head. "There are those that worry because they can feel your guardian."
"I'm guarding her. I can take her to Angel's if you'd prefer."
"Many would like it if she staked him."
"Can't do that. The Powers would get pissed."
"Ah. They do mess things up."
"In many interesting ways," Xander agreed dryly. "We're not here to cause harm. I'm here to stop harm."
The demon nodded, patting him on the head again. "I will let the wary know. You should have protectors." Xander pointed at his sword. "True, you are a master of that weapon. Still it is not safe."
Xander smirked. "You'd be surprised."
"Perhaps, but there are other Highers who would like you."
"They can die too. Only I own me."
"I'll let that be known. They must curry your favor beyond what the humans have." He patted them both on the head before straightening up. "Eat something, you're both tired seeming and too skinny. The slayer Faith was said to be much more luscious than she is now." He walked off.
She looked so confused so he nudged her with a shoulder, grinning some. "It's a nice warning that someone else wants to own me."
"He nagged like an aunt."
"Some do that. He might be an aunt or a mother." He pulled her up, grabbing his sword to hide under his hair. "C'mon. We can easily follow that order. I need breakfast."
"Breakfast?" She checked her watch. "Don't you live on the east coast, boytoy?"
"Yup, but it was a long day yesterday so I was sleeping in. Fortunately Dean said he was taking the students to stare at the beach." He found a rolling snack stand and read it. "I'm doubting he has human food." He shrugged and walked her on, finding a diner. "Usually I'd be cooking if we were at home but they're trying to get the gay bashing officers and others back from the demons after they tried to gas my house so we're in a hotel."
She blinked a few times. "You still babble."
He shrugged. "It happens." The waitress gave them a wary look. "Breakfast. Yesterday was a long day." She nodded once at that. "What's good on the human food side? A Guardian just told us to eat more, we were too skinny."
She smiled slightly. "You can't go wrong with eggs. We have human and Kelpet eggs."
"I've eaten hard boiled Kelpet eggs in the past," he said with a shudder.
"Poached they're much less bitter."
"Nah, let's stick with normal food," Faith said.
The waitress nodded. "We have a very nice ham and eggs platter. Fried ham, toast, two or three eggs, and coffee or juice."
Xander patted himself down, finding his card. "It should still work if the demon plane yesterday didn't demagnetize it or the demon at the bank isn't helping someone who wants me again. Like about three days ago." The waitress stared then squeaked. He shrugged one-sidedly. "It happens." He considered it then summoned his emergency wallet. It had been in Don's desk. It plopped down in front of him, letting him check it. "Three hundred, enough for breakfast. Get whatever you want, Faith." He looked at her. "Any briosit?"
"Yes. Fried or baked?"
"Fried with some maple syrup and two eggs, slightly runny yolks?"
"I can do that." She'd enjoy it if he tipped well because briosit was expensive meat.
"I'll do the ham thing with the three eggs," Faith said. She nodded. "Coffee please, with sugar."
"Soda?" Xander begged.
"As long as you don't destroy the restaurant," the waitress said firmly.
"It's my first caffeine today and I warned the ones screwing with me earlier if they didn't quit I'd have a case of mountain dew then go see them." She whined. He smiled angelically. "There's one at the bank playing with my money."
"I'd pay to see that match," she said, heading back to the kitchen.
Faith looked at him. "They really do know you."
"They know I cause destruction when they bother me but usually I don't mind the harmless or nicer demons." He grinned.
"It's a large animal that has the texture of chicken but it tastes like pork. It's a really tough beast to kill so it's expensive but it's damn tasty."
She just nodded. "You're a bit strange these days, X."
"It's where I'm not getting my hormones worn out."
"You can't do that with two boys?"
"Yup," he said with an evil smirk. She bopped him on the arm. "After breakfast, want to head to Angel and Wes's place?"
"Working together in Angel's PI firm. They're holed up in a large, grand old hotel." The waitress brought their food. He pulled out money and it disappeared. He looked up. "I'm coming up there. It's not fair to the nice waitress." Two bigger bills reappeared. He handed it over, making her laugh. "Give me enough change for cab fare." She nodded, going to do that. He dug in, letting her taste the briosit by holding up a fork. "Open." She gave him a look. "Open or I'm tickling."
"You'll be missing fingers." She ate it, humming. "That's good."
He grinned. "It's very good." He dug in, taking the change back. He handed over all but ten back, getting a grin from the waitress. They finished breakfast and headed out together, going to find a way to Angel's.
"Not a great tip but that one unkind one did take his cash again," she told the cook.
"They're going to get him in their faces yet."
"Oh, he's vowed it. With caffeine bouncing too."
The cook shuddered. "I was watching the last battle yesterday." She nodded and went to check her other customers. They had all stayed quiet to keep out of the hunter and slayer's notice.
Xander walked Faith into the hotel with two bags. "Here you go. One Faith with clothes to wear since she only had this outfit." He smirked at Gunn, who groaned. "The one who was going to jump her is very sorry. She even got to see me take on the one who keeps trying to take my money. It's nice he put it all in a safe for me. Steve's going to have a lot of fun putting it back and charging that demon."
Faith stared at him then at Wesley when he came out of the back area. "Is he sane?" she asked him.
"There's doubt that he is when he's backed up."
"Not backed up now. I let loose very well on the ones who wanted me this time. Even had some Mountain Dew with me." Wesley shuddered. "Caught yesterday?"
"We heard. Are you okay?"
"I'm always fine," Xander said blandly, giving him a dirty look. "Anyway, Faith should be perfectly fine now. She got to clap and watch my magnificent ass work and two demons try to follow my hair."
"A bit of ego blowing?" Faith taunted with a smirk.
"My ass does look fabulous in this outfit, Faith. Even you stared."
"Point." She walked off shaking her head. "Where's Angel? We found some intel for him on a new higher demon coming into town."
"One who actually doesn't want me," Xander quipped.
"How many have you dealt with this month?" Gunn demanded. "We heard about last night's."
"This month?" He mentally counted. "Six suitors who gave up, two who didn't, and the thing last night plus the one at the bank and a few minor minions."
Gunn walked off shaking his head. "Only you, Harris."
"Hey, you could have my hyper hormones too," he quipped.
"I'd never let myself get as bad as you do." He waved before disappearing into the back.
"I try to wear them out," he told Wesley.
"I know." He patted him on the arm. "Angel?" he called. He came down the stairs with Faith. "Good, she found you."
"She did. Harris, head home before we get invaded."
"I'm good and worn out," he defended.
"They'll still try thinking that you're too tired to take them out," Angel pointed out grimly.
"Fine." He tried to open a portal but had to hold his head. "I think I'm a bit too worn out." He tried his messenger stone but none came. He looked up. "I'm not that mean today." He couldn't get to the DPP realm either. "That's not right. Angel, even the DPP realm is locked."
"How?" he asked.
"I can't get up there and my necklace can take me there as long as there's *any* magic around me." He looked around, frowning at something. "Well, that could explain it." He pointed. "Know that one?"
"Please don't let him be here for you," Angel muttered.
"Not cute," he warned. "Not every demon comes for me, Angel." He walked out to meet that one. "You would be?" he asked, trying to sound pleasant.
"Are you Mr. Harris?"
He sat down to be closer to his height. "I'm with Fitch and Roberg. We're a demon law firm."
"I don't want anything anyone left me. I only take out the ones who try to keep me."
"I know that. We're very fond of you doing that. It takes out some fairly bad ones who might get us the wrong sort of attention."
"Are you the reason he can't get to the DPP?" Wesley asked.
"No. You're in occlusion. All of LA is locked out of magic for six days." He looked at Xander again. "Unfortunately we cannot go with your stated wishes. We must enact any wills as they are written." Xander whimpered. "I know it is distressing. You have taken out another Higher Clan leader and we must enact his will."
"Oh please tell me he didn't leave me shit."
"No, nothing like that. His estate and a few other things, but no excrement," he told him. "Though it might be valuable as an explosive if you used it correctly. As I know you know since you did that last night."
"Yes I did." He looked back inside. "Wes?"
"I have no idea how to handle this. Gunn?" He came out. "They're trying to make Xander take what a demon left him in his will."
"Interesting. How often does this happen?"
"Only when I don't say 'not mine' fast enough," he said blandly.
"Mr. Harris has taken out sixteen of the nineteen Higher Clans heads. There is no onus to him since he is not hunting them, merely saving himself. The Council finds it most amusing."
"Vesvold would complain," he said with a pout.
"Were he still with us, he would have protested and hidden it from you. As he did others he could not discourage." Xander gave him an odd look. "We handle his will as well. No one has talked to you?"
"I imagined it went to his kids and mom."
"Most of it but not all of it." He patted him on the head. "We will go over this. Do you have an attorney?"
"I can do that for him. Charles Gunn."
"I have heard of you." He shook his hand and shrank himself to closer to their size. "Let us talk."
"Can it help him get back to Miami?" Angel asked, sounding hopeful. "Before Willow or someone shows up?"
"I heard she tried to play with my dog. I need to spank her," Xander said. He pulled out the wallet to show her. "My puppies, Hershey and Kiss. We found them at the pound. They're siblings."
"They're adorable." He turned the page to show the ferrets. "Aww, little chaos beasts."
"Strife likes them too." He grinned.
"That's because you're like a chunk of your god got molded into human shape at times," Angel told him.
"Now and then but I do serve Ares and Cupid just as much," he quipped.
"Saw him with the sword, he was impressive," Faith agreed.
"We've seen," Angel assured her. "Should we call Buffy and them for you, Faith?"
"No." He walked out to talk to the demon. "We're trying to get Mr. Harris back to his own coast and his safety."
"Of course you are. We can help with that in a few moments."
Gunn looked up from his reading. "He's going to fuss."
"He can fuss all he wants. We must enact the wills as they were written. There is one bad clause in Vesvold's." Xander leaned out of the building. "He did lay a curse on any demon that tried to grab you against your will."
"So that's why there's been so many begging for their destruction?"
"Possibly." Xander just nodded and went back inside. He ran a magical check on his family, finding things going wrong. "You should call."
He called Steve. "Looks like the bank thing may have impacted the hotel room, Steve. Thanks. LA but we're occluded. Meaning no magic right now. Six days. I'll fly back first. I don't want to hang with Angel. It's no fun without Cordy to pester. Thanks, man." He hung up. "He'll fix it. Thank you for telling me."
"You're welcome." He went back to the wills with Gunn, who was mentally swearing at the boy. He could hear him quite well. "Vesvold auctioned off some of the things he hadn't wanted before."
Xander came out with a cup of coffee for him. "Least I can do, Gunn." He looked over his shoulder. "Vesvold got rid of that one."
"That's the proceeds for the auction."
Xander grimaced. "I don't need more money."
"Tough." Xander rolled his eyes. "Let us get you back to your hotel room. If Mr. Gunn will act in your stead? I know you don't have the head for money things."
"I'll pay you," Xander offered.
"We can do that." The demon took Xander, putting him in the middle of the chaos going on in the hotel room. Then he came back to go over the rest of the wills. "How does he do this?" he asked the demon.
"They knew they were courting their destruction by wanting him and trying to have him. By our laws, they had to register him as theirs before taking him and show proof that he had accepted them somehow."
"If he nodded in their direction in greeting it was enough, right?"
"Less than that. If the demon had been in his presence three times without being smited. Which can mean a scrying portal."
"Wonderful. I'll remember that if I run into any others."
"Usually most GHS aren't touched. We only go after those of higher levels and those who already know about these things. His students are highly prized."
"We'll warn them."
"I have ones for them as well."
"I can work on that too since they're part of Xander's harem." That got a nod and a smile. That was how the demon courts worked.
Xander landed in the middle of the chaos of the hotel room, looking around. "Are we finally getting to go home?" he asked the officer.
"The bank decided to stop your accounts, Harris."
"No, the person at the bank stealing my funds just got his ass thumped." The hotel manager looked at him. Steve appeared with something. "Thanks, Steve."
"Welcome, Xander." He handed over what he was carrying. "That should fix this problem until we can restore his accounts. The one who was stealing his funds is in deep trouble." And messy since Xander had gotten him too. He had forgotten how good Xander was with the blade. The manager relaxed and nodded. "We're sorry about that. It's all part of the reason they were hiding here. Some of the same sort that tried to gas their house and do this."
"I can understand how trying that is. Thank you, Officers."
"Not a problem, sir. I'm glad it was a misunderstanding."
Xander shrugged. "Don't look at me. I liked the bank. They were good when the guy who wanted to be Horatio stole from me when he was my local financial manager. Steve got to punt his ass too."
"Why do they do this?" the manager asked.
"To make me come to them," Xander told him. "That way I have to come to them to get my things back."
"Another way to make you consent to be theirs," Sam agreed from his spot on the couch.
"Why do they want you?" the manager asked.
"Oh!" He nodded quickly. "That explains quite a lot. Your entourage?"
"My students," he said with a point. "My family."
"Even better. Thank you for staying with us during this trying time, sir."
Xander grinned at Horatio. "Can we go home?"
"You can. The neighborhood security checked it over and it's safe. That one neighbor has left."
"Thank you. We'll be doing that soon. Is my SUV here?" Horatio nodded. "Thank you." He gave him a hug. "We've been fighting this guy for weeks," he admitted quietly. Horatio smiled. "He tried to cut off my cards too."
"We'll be rearranging the bank accounts to make sure he's not anywhere near them," Steve promised. "Once I finish emptying the vault he put Xander's money into." He gave Xander a look.
"Not my fault."
"I know. The one who paid him to do that?"
"I think Gunn's working on his will," Xander admitted.
"Oh, great," Dean said dryly.
Xander shrugged. "I told them I didn't want anything." He looked at the manager. "Let us pack and we'll get out of your hair. Thank you for hosting us during this problem."
"Not a problem, sir. Remember us next time you have an emergency." He left to put the money into the safe. It would cover the account.
Xander looked at the officers. "Escorting us back?"
"I think the lieutenant can do that," one said, leaving with his partner.
"Sorry, guys," Xander said. "I had no idea he had gone this far. We thought they were still toying with it." They all nodded. Horatio gave him a hug. "Danny and Don busy?"
"Quite. I'll help you get them home." He looked at Steve. "Will he have other problems?"
"No, I've already fixed those from his last shopping trip." Xander gave him a funny look. "They did try to cancel one of the cards. I told them it was someone siphoning money off at the bank and they let me pay it off with one of mine, which you've already paid me back for."
"Thanks, Steve. Maybe we should just live on cash."
"That could help but you'll never be able to store that much in the office safe." He disappeared, going back to it. He had a helper that made sure he got where he needed to go. It was a pity the person he had originally dealt with at the bank had been promoted above handling accounts. He liked her.
Xander looked at them. "Pack." They ran to do that, heading down to the SUV and the Impala. Horatio got to drive the SUV, putting Xander in the back with the boys. They headed back once the pets were all secured. It was good to get home again. "Draco, did you like the beach?" he asked with a grin.
"It was very enlightening. Why do so many women have cantaloupe shaped breasts down here? Is it a birth defect?"
"Bad plastic surgery." Draco looked confused. "You can put implants in to make them bigger, Draco."
"Because some women want to have backaches I guess. I don't understand more than fixing something like a nose you're unhappy with or a face lift to get rid of wrinkles."
"You can?" he asked.
Harry nodded. "We've seen some tragic excuses for bad plastic surgery."
"We'll need to make sure Draco has clothes anyway," Xander told him.
"Let's wait until this is all solved. That way you don't have to explain why the card isn't working," Horatio ordered from the front.
"He didn't bring that much with him."
"Draco's about your size. He can fit into yours, Xander."
"Fine. For a few days. I have plenty of clothes I never wear." Draco gave him a long look. "I over shopped." That got an eye-roll from the younger man. "I do. My closets are stuffed."
"Danny wanted you to fix that," Horatio reminded him.
"I know. I will later tonight while we wait on the stuff to be settled by Steve."
"Or we'll take cash." Horatio groaned and shifted. They pulled into the neighborhood and parked, letting the dogs out first. Then the boys got out and him carrying the ferrets. "Open some windows, guys." He put the ferrets back, making them happy to be in the bigger ferret kingdom. He changed out all the food and water in case it had been tampered with. The dogs came running in and jumped onto their ottomans, relaxing again. Xander went to check the kitchen, tossing out the stuff that had went bad in the fridge. Sam came in to take out the trash for him while Dean got the boys resettled and played with the dogs. "Guys, we've got to straighten out my closet," Xander called.
"Why can't you?" Dean asked.
"This way you guys can pick out anything you want to bum." He put something in the oven and turned on the timer, heading that way. He opened his closet doors, staring. "Horatio!" He came in and looked then moaned. "Where are my clothes?"
"I don't know." He called Ryan since he had been in here last. "Mr. Wolfe, Xander just opened his closet....." He smiled. "Thank you." He hung up. "At the dry cleaner's. He had them cleaned in case anything stuck to them and poisoned you farther."
Xander grimaced. "That's going to be hellishly expensive. Even more than the car insurance."
"He said he prepaid it out of the stash in the wall safe."
Xander nodded, going to call their usual dry cleaner. They delivered. It'd take two van-fulls to deliver it all but they did. Xander got to rearrange Don and Danny's closets too.
Horatio watched the boys help Xander sort through his clothes. Anything he didn't want ended up on the bed. Including a suit. "Didn't like that one?"
"I've worn it twice and the jacket's too tight across the shoulders now. I guess I gained more muscle or I'm getting fat."
"Probably more muscle," Horatio said mildly. "You can get it retailored."
"That would mean a funny spot when they had to add fabric." He grimaced. "You can go with me to buy my next one." Horatio smiled and nodded at that. Xander gave him a quick hug. "Draco, find something you want to wear." He went back to sorting through things. His leathers went back into the trunk. His lounging jammies had their own dresser. His underwear had its own drawer. The rest of the stuff was carefully put up or tossed onto the bed. The bed had a huge pile waiting on the boys to sort through. "There," he said finally.
Draco and Harry were sorting through things, with an occasional grab from Dean or Sam. Draco was muttering about how he thought his mother could shop but clearly Xander was the king of it. Horatio smirked at that mumble but left it alone. Draco got a few very nice outfits out of it. Harry stole a few shirts that might fit him. Dean and Sam got all the t-shirts he tossed out. The rest got bundled up and Horatio took them to the church they all donated old clothes at. The nuns would appreciate it. He nodded at the priest waiting. "Someone cleaning out their closet, Father."
"That's very kind of him." He saw the clothes. "I remember a young man with a lot of hair dropping off similar items a few years back."
"It was his," he agreed. They smiled and the priest took the boxes of clothes inside to be sorted. Horatio went back to work to see if Danny and Don were free. They were still out questioning so he left messages for them that they were home. The gay bashing officers had been returned, finally, and were now headed to counseling. The demons had been mean to them.
to part 3