Jensen woke up in an uncomfortable yet slightly familiar way. He was on a bed. He was tied up. The unfamiliar part came with the way his ankles and knees were supported off the bed by the straps around them that hung from the ceiling. He could feel a strap around his chest and something on his neck. Well, now he knew what Xander felt like. "This was not what I wanted to be doing today,"he quipped, checking his bindings. He was truly, possibly, fucked this time. "So, what's the idea here? Because this isn't really my thing, ya know."
The man walked over to smirk at him. "The idea is that you're one of those GHS people and now you're mine."
"Um, error of coding, dude. I'm one of the retrieval team, not one of them." He was trying to not act panicked and even trying for nonchalant but it wasn't fully working.
"Ah, then you know where they all are. That way I can pick and choose which one should be mine. Even better." He stroked Jensen's foot. "I think we can come to a good agreement."
Jensen stared at him. "Even if you rape and torture me, I'm not giving you a damn thing. For that matter, I've had better torture than this. Not like they hire green soldiers for retrieval teams." The man laughed. Xander walked up behind him, gun in hand. Jensen didn't see where the gun went but apparently he didn't like it as much when he was being poked with something hard and round.
"Let him go," Xander ordered.
"I would. I'm not the nice one."
"You'll both tell me what I want to know or I'll destroy you. Boys like you don't shoot." Xander shot him. He screamed and fell down.
"Not damaging enough," Jensen complained. He looked at the things. They were mechanical locks. "Shit, I need the code."
Xander looked at him. "What's the code?"
The man sneered. "You can't do anything else to me. You'll be arrested for this."
"Really?" Xander sneered. "Because I haven't destroyed others? Shit, I could call any of a dozen numbers I have and destroy your ass totally. Because I know everyone from CIA to mafia people. The benefit of them owing me money," Xander said smugly. "What's the fucking code."
"Or what, you'll torture me?" Xander leaned down, chanting something quietly before touching his forehead. Every nerve in his spine fired at once and his cock slammed into hardness and shot immediately. "Oh, God," he whimpered, falling flat. That had made the gunshot wound hurt worse.
Xander smirked. "I've just ruined you for any other experience. Though I'm sure they'll like you in prison. Already open for them and needy trying to get back to that state. What's the code?"
"Will you do it again?"
"I'll let my adopted father figure tell me if that's a good idea or not. What's the fucking code." He cocked the gun and pointed it at him. "I'll kill your ass. It wouldn't even be the first this month."
"You are one of them."
"Yes, and I'm a good boy. The PD knows how hard I fight to get away from people. What's the code? They'll arrest you, not me."
The man stared at him, seeing that touch of crazy, paranoid coldness that most killers had. "985741."
Xander tapped that into one cuff. "What's the last number?" He looked at him. "There's one spot left."
"Six on that one."
Xander looked over them. Nine cuffs total. He got that one freed and then did the knee one. Jensen was muttering the code over and over as he worked on his wrist cuff so he couldn't forget it. He got one leg freed about the same time the door got kicked in. "This man kidnaped us," Xander said. "I'm getting the retrieval team member free."
"He shot me!" the man on the floor complained.
Xander looked at him. Then at the officer. "I found him standing at the end of the bed fondling himself. Yeah, I shot him in the ass." He handed the officer the gun. "Because I'll be damned if I'm going to let a friend be raped."
"That's fine, sir. Are you Harris?" Xander nodded. "You shouldn't be touching things." Xander pointed at the cuffs. "Oh, that's fine." He called it in and got an ambulance rolling. He watched as Jensen and Xander got him undone then Jensen scurried to the bathroom to clean himself up and put on clothes. Jensen came back a few minutes later. "Sir, do you need to go to the ER?"
"No, he didn't get around to doing more than squirting some lube up my ass." Xander kicked the guy, making him moan. "Xander, calm down. I'm okay." He looked around. "I need our phones." Xander shrugged, looking around too.
"Call them," one of the officers said, handing over his phone. Jensen called both their numbers, hearing the ring in a drawer. Xander got them out, tossing him his. Jensen handed the phone back with a smile. "Are you both all right?"
"I was unconscious on the couch and woke up to him telling Jensen he'd give him all our addresses so he could pick which one of us he wanted," Xander said dryly. Horatio walked in. "Fucker thought Jensen was one of us, Horatio."
"Are you both all right?" he asked calmly. Jensen nodded. Horatio hugged Xander. "It's all right." He smiled. "What did you do?"
"I shot him up the ass. Since he was ready and more than willing to rape Jensen, I thought it was fitting."
"Probably, yes. Very poetic." He petted Xander's hair, calming him down. "Jensen, do we need the ER?"
"No, I'm good. He didn't get there."
"All right. Why don't you take him somewhere safer after we get the statements we need."
"The farm's being sprayed," Jensen said. "We were at the house."
"I'll send Don and Danny home to check it out. Go home or go barge in on Wade. I think the others are out of town tracking Theresa and Marian down."
"We can barge in on Wade." He called. "I need a favor. I know you're persona non grata. No, Xander had to help me get free because someone took us from the house. Ride. I have no idea where we are."
Xander looked out the window. "Hilton."
"Xander thinks we're at the Hilton." One of the officers filling out forms nodded. "No, ride to Wade's. Thanks." He hung up. "Roque'll give us a ride over," he said calmly.
Xander looked at him oddly. "I'm not the one that nearly got hurt. Why are you talking to me like I'm panicking?"
"Because it works for me right now."
"Oh, okay." He gave him a hug, making Jensen relax. Horatio smirked at them for it. "Guys, statement?"
One handed him the form so they could fill it out for them. He looked at the doorway when someone else appeared. "Boys, the victim has a GSW up the anal tract. He is not the victim however. He goes in cuffs."
"Yes, Officer," one of the paramedics said, coming in to look him over. "How bad was it since he's messy?"
Xander looked at him. "I sent a jolt of energy up his spine and set it off to incapacitate him. I've used it before and that person said he'd never had it better and never would have. He committed suicide because it was never going to be that good again." The paramedic gaped at him. Xander touched his hand, zinging just a touch of it. "I did that only harder. I gave him about quarter strength."
The paramedic shivered, fighting his hardness. "Okay. That'd knock me out too, Mr. Harris. Where did you learn that?"
"Believe it or not, from an English teacher at one of the local prep schools. He translated it out of an ancient Arabic source from the Ottoman empire."
"Wow," Horatio said, shaking his head quickly. "That probably falls under cruel and unusual punishment, Xander. So let's only use it as a last resort from now on?"
"Unless they deserve it." He glared at the idiot. "How did you like having a GHS?" he asked snidely. "Was it all you wanted? I mean, you even got to get off." The man whimpered, staring at Horatio.
Horatio stared at him. "I would've let him destroy you to the molecular level and send everything you own to various charities. Xander is very generous with the local charities and the department." The man slumped, letting them put him on the gurney and cuff him. One of the officers followed since he hadn't read him his miranda rights. Horatio spotted Roque in the doorway and waved him inside. "Take them right to Wade if the rest of the team isn't back yet. We have to check the house."
"They're still in the Everglades."
"I'm sure Cougar is complaining that alligators like his hat again," Jensen quipped weakly.
Roque looked at him. "You need the hospital or a shrink, kid?"
"No. I'm good. He didn't make it there. Xander shot him up the ass."
"Good," Roque told Xander. "Fitting too. Front or back?"
"I was behind him. So it probably went into his intestinal tract if it didn't go straight up." He grimaced. "Poor gun. Calleigh might have to clean it before doing the comparison fire."
"I'm sure she'll grimace in distaste and wish you had gotten him a second time," Horatio soothed. He gave Roque a visual order to go. He walked them out. Horatio looked at the other officer. "Let me route someone to their house to find the rest of the evidence."
"Mr. Harris was undoing the restraints, Lieutenant. They take a code."
"That's fine. I doubt they need to be opened again before we destroy them." He called for a team here and Danny to check his house. He'd know if anything was out of place. He'd explain to the worried managers later if Xander hadn't given them one when they entered the lobby.
Wade heard the pounding and went to open the door, finding his boss and the other kid in Miami who had the power to frustrate him. "What happened? You both look rough."
"Someone thought Jensen was a GHS member and took him to keep," Roque said. "Xander shot him. They had been home."
"That's cool. We're outside." He let them in. "Injuries I should call someone for?"
"Jensen probably needs liquor."
"No I don't," he complained. "I'm fine. Really."
Wade looked at him then at Roque. "I'll make sure they're fine. The rest of them are so far out in the 'Glades not even a satellite phone might work." He closed the door and walked off. "This way, guys. The girlfriend was purring at the sun." He grinned.
"Cool. I think some warmth might do us both some good," Xander said. "Thanks, Wade."
"Not a problem, Xander. Is he dead?"
"Xander shot him up the ass," Jensen said.
"Pity." He let them outside and followed. Xander paused, staring. He realized Xander hadn't met his girlfriend yet. "Xander this is...."
"Xander," she squealed, bouncing up to hug him. "What are you doing here?"
"I kinda work for him," Wade said. "So you're the one he was with out in Sunnydale." Anya smiled and nodded. "Huh. Small world. Guys, pick a chair and sit. Relax. It'll probably take the CSI an hour or so to go over the house."
"If he hurt the ferrets or Hubert I get to kill him harder, right?" Xander asked Wade.
"I won't mind. You know that." Xander grinned. "Go sit. Want some lemonade?" Because this was getting awkward.
"Please," Jensen agreed. He pulled Xander down into a chair. "Relax." He stared at Anya, who was bouncy and nervous looking. "He's fine, Anya. We protect him a lot."
"Why does Xander need protected? Are more demons coming after him? Because we knew he was a demon magnet in Sunnydale. I'm guessing being off the hellmouth might make it worse."
"Slightly," Xander said. "But I'm also GHS. I found that out on my roadtrip."
"No wonder we had such good sex," she said happily. She kissed Wade when he came back. "He's where I learned that tongue thing I taught you."
"Wonderful." He handed Xander a glass. This was probably going to be one of those odd, weird days. He remembered Xander described her as a money hungry nympho. He wasn't far wrong either. "So, how long were you two together?"
"A few weeks for prom and I left for graduation because I didn't want to die. Then I came back after his roadtrip and decided we were dating."
Xander nodded. "We were together for five months I think. Just barely moved in together." He sipped his lemonade, smiling at the shot in it. "Thanks, Wade."
"Welcome." Max would've made him give her up because that was creepy to share a lover with his boss. How was Xander going to handle it?
"You know, you would look very hot with Xander," Anya said, stroking up Wade's arm.
He smirked and shook his head. "He's my boss, I can't do that."
"Shoot. It would be very hot and I could watch."
He kissed her. "I'd have to top and the boss wouldn't like that."
"Pity." She looked at Xander. "Who are you doing now?"
"I have two wonderful boyfriends, both in the police department locally. Danny's a CSI and Don's a homicide detective."
She gaped then blinked a few times. "Two?"
"Anya, you raised my stamina to the point where I nearly killed someone in bed," he said dryly. "Literally. Twice."
"Oh." She looked proud of that. "I'm glad I could help, Xander. Wade already had great stamina. He gives me many more orgasms than the six a day you used to." She stroked up Wade's chest. "He's so good to me."
"I'm sure he is and if you make him happy then I'm happy." Wade smirked at him for that. "Have you seen Wes and the LA team recently?"
"No, I left after they arrested Giles for selling someone."
"You? That was you? No one said that was you or I would've cursed him myself." She pouted. "I'll have to do that later."
"They're all back to hold Sunnydale down," he told her. "We don't talk but they're doing good so I don't have to move back."
"If you do, I'm hiring a full commando team of some of the luckiest bastards I know to go with us," Wade told him. "The last reports I heard from that way said it was FUBAR and that was over a year ago." Xander gave him a confused look. "Max wanted to know why so many people died there."
"Oh. The hellmouth. Vampires mostly."
"Yeah, I figured that out after you explained that to me." He looked at Anya. "He's still hunting when he needs to."
"Of course he is. That would keep them from trying to keep him and sleep with him. He wouldn't look as pretty giving demons orgasms as he does that one with him."
"He's not mine," Jensen assured her. "We're friends, not together."
"Poo. You'd look hot together too. Then we could watch it."
"No," Xander said, shaking his head with a smirk. "Sorry, Ahn. I don't perform for anyone anymore."
"Shoot. That would mean a boring bedroom, Xander. You know better than that."
"No, we're not bored. Not in the least. I nearly killed Don the night I played virginal captured bride for him. He walked into work and passed out at his desk." He gave her a smug look. She was looking awed. "I'm fantastic to my boys. They're not bored."
She looked at Wade. "I need to do that."
"No, we're good the way we are. Roleplaying is for later, when we're starting to get bored. Right now you're all I need, Anya." She beamed and kissed him, snuggling into his lap. He moaned. "Wifi in the living room, Jensen."
"Thanks." He got up and helped Xander up so they could escape. Once they were in the living room he looked at Xander. "You dated her?"
"She used to tell me all sorts of stories about how she tortured people then wanted sex."
"Ah." He nodded, texting Clay's phone to let them know they were okay. He had forgotten to do that. He'd block the weirdness out of his mind for now. "Rest, Xander."
"I should be saying that, Jensen. I only got knocked out."
Jensen looked at him. "I actually had training to handle that stuff."
Xander smirked. "It doesn't usually match reality. The one whose memories I carry did too."
"Good point. We'll both rest." Xander turned on cartoons. "Cool, Transformers." They settled in to watch it and ignore the fact that Anya was squealing and so was Wade. "I hope his back lasts," he finally had to quip.
"She likes being on top. I hope he likes oral sex though since I taught her what it was."
Jensen snickered. "That's so bad."
"She didn't know. The last time she was human Vikings were pillaging."
"Aww. That's a really old woman. Nearly as old as Adam."
"How old is Adam?" Xander held up five fingers. "Centuries?" Xander shook his head. "Damn," he said in awe. Xander smirked and nodded. "No wonder he swears at you in Egyptian."
"Yup." They went back to the cartoons, turning it up some to drown out the sex and the sound of the breaking lounger. "I give it a six for her usual effort," Xander muttered. "He's not going to be able to walk tomorrow." Xander called someone. "It's me. I need a massage gift certificate for a minion who is dating someone very loud. Yes, Wade. Please. That's his home address. He's been there? Cool. Yeah, you might warn them he might need a chiropractor too. Thanks." He hung up. "That way he has a gift certificate for tomorrow."
Jensen nudged him. "You're so nice."
"I needed one plenty of times," Xander murmured. Things finally quieted down and they ignored the cuddling she would demand. They didn't think Wade cuddled but Xander knew Anya did. Even if she had to tie you down. That's how Xander had learned how to cuddle.
Cougar looked at the only phone they had that had a signal out here. He frowned, holding it up. He had no idea what had happened.
Clay looked at it. "That goes well with Roque's report he got them there." He sent one back. Jensen typed one back immediately. "They're watching cartoons at Wade's. Why are they at Wade's?" He typed that in. "Ah, they're being guarded since someone decided Jensen was GHS. Yay." He typed back something and got a report. "That's gotta be creepy." He put it into his pocket.
"What?" Aisha asked.
"Wade's dating Xander's ex Anya." They walked off. They had to find that cabin. The tracker said it was this way.
Aisha shook her head. "Wade has a girlfriend?"
"Yeah, he joked he bought one," Pooch said dryly. "Didn't Xander say she was a nympho?"
"That's why the chuckle twins are watching cartoons," Clay said dryly. Cougar snickered, shaking his head. "Yeah, exactly. It's weird." He finally spotted the cabin. "Finally!" They deployed around the edge, watching for the guy who had kidnaped the ladies. He tried to fire a shotgun at them but Cougar got him in the leg, making him scream and flail. Clay walked over him. "I've had worse than that and didn't scream half as much. Be a better man in the future." He and Pooch got the women untied and handed them the clothes.
"Ladies, do we need to call someone?" Aisha asked quietly.
Marian shook her head. "He was trying to decide which one of us was his wife. He was going to give the other away to a friend who hadn't had a wife in years." They got dressed in private and Marian did a bit of light looting. There wasn't much in the cabin but he had enough to pay the guys back for gas getting out there. She handed it to Clay. "Gas money." The ladies walked out together. "Eww, bugs," she complained.
"It's a half-hour walk back to the car," Aisha said, leading them off. The guys could clean this one up. Or maybe burn him down.
Clay stared at the guy. "Don't try it again. We'll only get more mean and less tolerant. Next time it'll be a head shot." They walked out together, him calling the local PD that they had found the two ladies, the kidnaper had a hole in his leg, and the GPS coordinates of the cabin. They'd have to fly out to pick him up but that was fine he supposed. He could pay for it from a jail cell. The detectives over the missing person's case would come get their statements later, once they were home. Pooch helped them work on them on the long drive back to Miami. That way it only had to be printed and handed over.
Don walked up to Wade's door, Danny right behind him. Wade was waiting outside. "That bad?"
"I'm discouraging Anya from suggesting I take Xander in to do a threesome," he admitted with a shrug.
"Anya. Xander's ex?" Danny asked. Wade smirked but nodded. "You didn't know?"
"No, she never named him before. So things are a bit weird today."
"You get that a lot with Xander. Just wait until your first cross-realm trip," Don quipped.
"You're the husband," he pointed out.
"Xander probably would like to do some exploring," Danny admitted. "Both his roadtrips got cut short."
"We can arrange that," Don agreed. "Fly out for a long weekend?"
"That'd work around the US," Danny agreed. "What about a longer one somewhere else?"
"Maybe." He looked at him. "They napping on each other again?"
"Jensen's napping and Xander's petting him while typing something on my system. What does he write?"
"Smut. Gay smut," Don said with a grin. "Pretty good gay smut actually."
"Huh." He opened the door, nearly hitting Anya with it. "Anya, these are Danny and Don, Xander's boyfriends. Guys, this Anya."
"Hi," she said, smiling and waving. "Xander said you both gave him very good orgasms and weren't bored in bed yet. That's always a good thing." She gave them both a hug and a grin. "Xander, your orgasm friends are here," she called, walking toward the living room.
"I like that she's blunt. I never wonder what she's thinking," Wade quipped.
"Xander said she used to share gory details about her past job," Danny offered.
"I haven't heard any of those." He walked them inside. "Xander, boys are here."
"Mine or yours?" he mumbled as he typed. He backspaced and fixed something then went on.
"Yours." He saved the story and emailed it to Xander's address, earning a grin. "Can you guys drop Jensen at home or should I tie him up in a closet so Clay can feel heroic again?"
"Nah, we can drop him. It's almost on the way," Danny said. Anya came bouncing out with coffee. "We were gonna just pick him up," he offered. She pouted. "So that's where Xander learned to pout from!"
"And Willow," Xander admitted. He stood up and kissed her on the cheek. "We'll catch up sometime."
"Of course we will since we're in the same city." She gave him a kiss then Wade one. "You had candy," she teased.
"No, only you," he said smoothly, helping put down the coffee stuff. She purred and kissed him again. The quad snuck out while they were kissing so that was nice. "Thanks for making dinner."
"I don't mind cooking now and then but Xander does it much better if he's kept in practice."
"He's nearly chef quality. That beef thing you stole half of? He made it." She moaned and moved closer. He got to moan when she went down on him. That meant she wanted oral sex. Someone had taught her bad habits in that area. Now he knew who.
Jensen walked into the building, finding the others walking in the back door. "You find them?" he asked through a yawn.
Clay stared at him. "You good?"
"I'm fine. Could use a bath but otherwise I'm fine. I woke up tied up but he didn't do anything."
"Good. He dead?"
"I don't know. You'd have to ask Horatio if he survived surgery." He shrugged. "I'm going to bed. I drifted off when Xander started to write smut thanks to Anya being so noisy." He went to his apartment and laid down, curling up into a ball so he could rest.
Cougar checked on him before locking the apartment door and settling in to make sure he handled the calming down fine.
Clay and Aisha went to his place. Pooch went to his to check on his wife and baby.
So it might be a quiet night in.
Wade finally got up after dinner because he had to use the bathroom. Of course, someone had great timing and knocked. He walked out to answer it, taking the envelope. The delivery person made him sign the little lined form and then he left. Wade felt it first, nothing odd but thick paper.
He closed the door and opened it, smirking. His boss was cooler than Max ever had been. He needed that massage time. She was going to wreck his back. He put it in his office and went back to bed. She was finally asleep. It had taken three hours of oral sex, though he had the best of all blow jobs for it, but she was finally asleep. Thank God.
Xander looked up as Wade walked in the next morning looking calm and content. "Have a good massage?"
"Very. She's killing my back."
"Sorry. She did it to me too. That's how I learned what a chiropractor was for." He went back to typing. "At least the smut muse came back. It had been blocked for months."
"Yeah, I think she's part succuba."
"Not hardly. She tell you about her former job?"
"I asked last night. Damn."
Xander smirked at him. "When she first got rehumaned, she used to tell me stories and then demand sex, even in public, no matter who could see or hear. I had to tell her why you didn't have sex in the park in front of the visiting kindergarten class once."
Wade nodded. "You helped her learn a lot of tact, kid."
"I tried. Partially in self defense. That's why I don't blush any more." He got back to it. "Do I have anything but training today?"
"Nope. I just needed a good place to hide. She's talking about decorating."
Xander grinned. "I can understand that fully. Then again, it's not as hard as when we were together. Then I was working construction, doing her, and almost nightly patrols."
Wade shuddered. "Did you ever sleep?"
"Few hours a night, sometimes on Sunday."
"No wonder you don't sleep now." Xander snickered, saving it and putting down his laptop. "Danny and Don mentioned some traveling?"
Xander moaned, nodding. "I'd love to do some traveling but I know they won't be able to go with me. I mean, it'd take weeks to do it properly."
"That's good for some places, but I want to see London. And Paris, though Adam said that it's full of immies like New York was. Maybe St. Petersburg. Some of the old places."
Wade nodded. "We can work out arrangements for that, kid."
"That would mean I'd need to take someone I could babble at. Since they're working I can't take them. I can't take Ray Junior because of college. If I take Greg I have to take Tony, which I wouldn't mind but Gibbs already said no."
"No, not really. You can go every few months to a different place. Have them join you for part of it."
"That would still mean traveling alone and I'd get in trouble. I'd be in so much trouble so damn fast. I'd probably get arrested and kicked out or something."
"London's uptight but not that uptight. Paris... You'd only get in trouble for leftist ideology that's against the French way. St. Petersburg, yeah, you'd get into trouble."
"To all three. London more than once actually." Xander beamed at him for it. "I can casually schedule something...."
"Who would I bring?"
"One of the team?"
"They're going to be busy. Marian's husband is in debt to his bosses at Wolfram and Hart, who're really high demons. His contract has a soul clause and they want her as a trophy to hand to prospective clients and good workers as a reward."
"Have you told Clay that?"
"Yeah. I handed him that whole file and the file we got from the LA team on them."
"Good. I wondered why Max called them posers."
"They've tried a few times to take over the world. They're not posers and they're kinda dangerous. They're setting up a local office but I can't find a way to stop them. I've warned everyone."
"We're talking judge assassinations and worse. Magicing juries was always Cordelia's favorite."
"Huh. I'll look into that. Maybe there is something Horatio could use." He made a note to someone. "Pieter knows?"
"He had to help get back Greg when they stole him the other night. Which I showed up to help with. Because I'll be damned. Greg's still family."
"Good," Wade agreed, looking at him. "Any other concerns for the team?"
Xander nodded. "Philip's getting a divorce. His boy will become spastic because Philip said he caught him shooting up." Wade winced. "So that's going to be a mess they'll have to step into and help him get a restraining order possibly."
"Those sort, you shoot," Wade assured him.
"I haven't had to. Philip might have to. Plus we had a new immie move into the area. I haven't met him but I've felt him a few times in the farmer's market and things. I couldn't identify him. I'm worried he'll attack us or the farm."
"There's too many in the family for that to be sensible."
"Yeah but it's individual combat for challenges. We're some of the best trained but Ray's still learning stuff. Plus the two new ones I'm working with. Dean and Sam aren't fully trained."
"I'm betting the oldest ones are never fully trained because they keep learning," Wade said.
"True and so do I, but I meant the style I'm teaching." That got a nod. "Cougar and Jensen are nowhere near ready to take a head."
"I doubt Clay wouldn't shoot whoever challenged them."
"When we lived near the station and lab, we had one that put gas canisters on the house to knock us out." Wade nodded slowly at that. "Not honorable but he was a hunter. He was arrested for gassing the house and breaking in. When he got out, he came here and poisoned the pets."
"For which you turned him into kitty food from what I heard," Wade said.
"Hell yes. You don't touch my family."
"Good. I appreciate that viewpoint a whole lot." He grinned. "We'll figure out the traveling thing. You can actually hire a traveling companion."
Xander looked at him. "I'm not going to hire a pro to go with me, Wade."
"Not the sort I was talking about."
"I forgot." He sighed. "We can still figure it out."
Xander nodded. "Please. If we can work it out I'd adore traveling."
"Sure." He patted him on the shoulder. "What else are you doing today?"
"I'm hoping I can talk Don or Danny into proofreading."
"Word is Dean and Sam are back in town."
Xander smirked. "They left without telling us, which worried us." Wade snickered. "Unless you want to proofread?"
"Maybe if it was real stuff. Save it for a punishment."
"You could proofread it out loud to Anya. She likes that."
"I'll keep that in mind for the nights I'm too tired." Xander grinned at him. "You don't mind?"
"We were serious then but when I got told not to come home, she didn't even protest. We agreed to split before my trip, that I'd probably want to fool around and she wouldn't stand that."
"True, you did."
"And then some."
Wade looked at him. "Who did you sleep with?"
"I got told that my file doesn't mention that." He shrugged. "Don't worry about it unless you hear about a demon named Devi. Then, you can kill him really hard. He regenerates if he's in bigger pieces."
"I'll keep that in mind." He'd look him up later. Plus whatever had happened. It had to be on the underground somewhere. Xander was staring at his laptop. "You go ahead. I'll hide here."
"Sure. Don't turn it on food tv. The daytime stuff is all boring."
"Okay." He turned it on to Headline News for now. The kid went back to writing. He was typing pretty fast. Maybe it was good smut. Anya might like that if he read it to her later. That way his back quit hurting. Anya was very bad for him. "How old is Anya?"
"Eleven hundred and some as a demon."
"So is her next birthday the twenty-sixth or what?"
Xander considered that. "Eleven-hundred-fifty-three if I remember right." He went back to typing. "She'll love it if you acknowledge that."
"Sure." He pulled out his phone to figure out what to get her.
"You have three months."
"That's good. Gives me time to find something other than chocolate."
Wade looked at him. "What?"
"When we were together," Xander said, still typing, "she had over a thousand sex toys."
"Which I did not buy."
"Good to know. I haven't seen them."
"Ask. She might tell you where they are." He paused and looked at him. "How did you buy her?"
He nodded. "Sorry to hear that. I tried."
"I know." He shrugged. "It works well for me really." He went back to watching the news. Xander saved and moved on. He looked over his arm. It was hot looking but gay sex. He went back to the news. It would make his head stay clear in case something happened. He looked at the ferrets, who were staring at them. "Did you feed the ferrets?"
"Yes. I need to buy some new litter. The litterboxes are getting a bit low."
"You bought litter two days ago." Xander frowned, looking at him. "How do you do it?" He had no idea, he'd never had pets.
"Open the bag, pour it out. Make sure you don't bury them." He got back to it.
Wade went to dig into the closets around the living room. He found it in the kitchen under the counter and brought it out. "You guys don't run out," he warned. He opened a door and blocked them from running out. "Xander."
"Let them out, Wade. They can run around the house. Hubert loves to ferret wrangle."
"Okay." He let them run out and opened the bag to pour it out. One ran over to use it. "Thank you," he said dryly. "That's appreciated." He filled the other ones. The ferrets all ran over to the couch so he lifted them up. Xander petted them, typing one handed. He sat down again and they ran over him. "You guys are a bit too much like rats for me to be comfy with you crawling all over me."
"They'll wiggle in your lap if you put them there."
Wade moved the one trying to get down his shirt into his lap and it did wiggle but let itself be petted. When it was done it nipped him and ran off. "Sure, you can do that." Another one pounced his head but Hubert saved him from being ferreted to death. He loved the little dragon. It was mouthy with him, it was clearly smart, and it liked to growl at people. He thought it was the coolest pet ever. Even if it did like the ferrets. Jensen and Cougar walked in. "He's writing."
"Still?" Jensen asked. He sat on Xander's other side, picking up the ferret to pet. "Hi, George."
Cougar sat down, petting the one that came to investigate him. Hubert let the one on the back of the couch run over to try to get into his hat again. He held it and looked at it. "No."
Xander snickered. "You're making it more tempting."
"I'm sure they'll sneak and win next time," Wade taunted. One finally made it inside his shirt, making him yelp. "Beauty!" He got her free and handed her to Xander. Who cooed, petted her, and put her on the footstool. She hadn't been on there in a while so it let her explore the little buttons, chew on them, and eventually slide down to the floor to run off. "They're like you in furry form, Jensen."
"I'm not that hyper. Xander...." Xander smirked at him for that then he got sucked back into the story. "What one are you working on?"
"About three of them," he said dryly.
"The one Ares wanted to see?" Wade asked.
"Oops." He opened the last chapter of that one and reread it then started on it again. Yeah, the muse was back.
Dean and Sam strolled in. "We're back."
"You left without leaving a note and worried me sick, so you get to proofread," Xander ordered.
"Shit," Dean muttered. "Sammy went to college."
"So?" Xander asked, looking at him. "Yay." He grinned. "Next time, leave a note. I nearly sent out a search party for you guys."
"Fine. Het smut?" Dean asked hopefully.
Wade shook his head. "Not from what I can see. Unless they're having anal sex."
"Damn," Dean complained. "Next time I'll leave a note," he sighed.
Xander finished up and saved it, handing it over with a kiss on Dean's cheek. "Thanks, Dean. It's even one that Ares wanted to see." He looked at the others. He stared at Cougar's hat. Cougar took it off carefully to look, handing over the ferret with a small smirk. "She's very happy with you." He put her down. "C'mon, practice. You too, Sam. Injured?"
"No, we're good, Xander. We just wanted to give you three some time alone." He smiled and followed the other two out. He closed the door so the ferrets couldn't come out and get stepped on. He warmed up against the building with the other two.
"Xander?" one of the neighbors called. Xander looked over and smiled with a wave. "Can you help me for a minute please?"
"Sure." He jogged over and stared at the beast standing there. "What?" he asked it. He let it sniff him. "What's wrong?" The owner appeared. "Is it sick?"
"Finding you for me. For some reason my ones you borrowed regurged yesterday?"
"Someone probably tried to bring back Max, but with the way he was taken out there's no way they can."
The hellhound owner smiled. "That's good to know. So they're probably fine?"
"Probably, yeah. You can talk to them, they're old enough to talk to and give yes/no answers back."
"Wonderful." He smiled and petted them. "This one's in training."
"She's very pretty."
"How can you tell female by looking?" Xander pointed at the tail. "Ah. Cool. Thanks."
"Welcome. Even if they managed to restore the soul they ate, they'd attack him immediately. That's why I did it that way."
"Wonderful." He smiled and disappeared with his dog.
The older woman stared at him. "You know people who keep hellhounds?"
"Yeah. He's a really nice guy." He grinned. "I borrowed two of his dogs to handle someone who was trying to turn Miami into a terrorist action."
"That's actually something I can agree with." She patted him on the cheek. "Thank you, dear."
"You're welcome." He jogged back. He leaned into the house. "Wade, someone did try to do to Max what they did to you. They couldn't because of the hellhounds."
Wade leaned over to look at him. "We sure?"
"Yeah. Because even if they could get it from the hellhound poop, they'd attack him immediately and do it again." He checked and put one of the Beauties inside then closed the door and went to stretch too.
"How did you get him?" Jensen asked.
"I had two hellhounds I borrowed follow him so we could keep track of him, and when I found him doing something that had to be stopped, I let them eat him. Alexx nearly puked," Xander said honestly.
Jensen nodded, looking at Cougar. "Clay wouldn't tell us. Now we know why." Cougar nodded, shuddering a bit. "You knew?" Cougar nodded. "Damn." He got back to work. He found his practice sword and handed Sam his. Sam grinned and helped worm up with him. Cougar got Xander first. Xander went over the last few moves to make sure he had them then added in a new move to make him learn how to block. Cougar smirked and they moved a bit faster. That was better for them. Xander threw in another new move, startling him but Cougar instinctively pulled back and avoided it then moved on.
"Not everyone you'll fight will be well trained. You get a lot of cocky kids who will try you and a lot of really experienced people with dirty moves," Xander reminded him. "When Dean came across, someone who worked in the morgue tried to take his head before he woke up."
"Secreto (Underhanded)," Cougar agreed.
Xander nodded. "The guy who brought me across gassed us, shot me while I was starting to wake up, then came back after dinner to take my head. He was going to give me enough time to realize it. Fortunately I knew something about blades from Sunnydale and he didn't count on that."
Cougar nodded, adding in an extra step the next time that one move came in and pressed with something he had seen Xander do, earning a smile.
"Good. Use what you can," he agreed, adding in something new. "This one," he said, stopping them to show him how to block it best. Cougar nodded, following along. Xander came at him with it again and Cougar blocked it better this time. "Good job." He let him go. "Go work with Sam for a bit. Jensen, front and center."
"Yup." He came over to work with Xander. He had watched their match and it was better. He was getting a lot better. He grinned. "See, I'm not bad."
"Not bad, but still not fully ready yet," Xander reminded him. He took a supposedly wild swing and Jensen yelped and ducked, which let Xander kick him onto his side with a grin. "Expect everything. Use what's unique to you, Jensen. A lot of them are going to be pissed off if you babble at them through the whole fight. You need better stamina for that."
"We all need to start running," Sam admitted.
Xander nodded. "That could help. I hate running. I'll swim." They all grinned. "Mermaid DNA," he quipped.
"How in the hell?" Jensen asked.
"High school." Jensen gaped, sword going to his side. Xander poked him hard with his own. "Ow! Sorry." They got back to the fighting. It was good. He was definitely getting better. Then it was Sam's turn.
Sam strolled over. "We ran into a not real serious challenge in Orlando," he said quietly.
"Connor." Xander growled. "He wanted to see how well you were teaching us. I think he was impressed."
"Uh-huh. I've got to take his head sometime soon."
"Let his cousin. Duncan's free and insane again."
"I'm told one of Duncan's enemies is trying to take over New York."
"Have you told Adam?"
"Yeah, we stopped there this morning. It made him quit pruning his roses and start swearing in Aramaic again. I asked if he would teach me that one." He grinned. "He praised me for wanting to learn but said not to make him less pissed. He said he'd talk to you later."
"Cool." He attacked and Sam fought him off. "Who did he get?"
"Me. Dean wasn't there."
"Okay." He worked Sam harder because he had been studying harder. "How close did you get to winning?"
"He walked off when I got him to the point where he was starting to slip."
"Good job, Sam." They fought harder and faster. Sam finally bowed out by tripping over his feet and panting. Xander checked his watch. "An hour. That's good, Sam. Still some footing problems. You might try thinner boots. Or dance lessons, either one."
"I've been working on it with soccer," Sam admitted, letting Xander haul him up. The other two got their turn now. They went over the new things they had learned. It set in the earlier lessons and Xander had more patience now that he had beaten Sam for a bit. "Dean, your turn," he called.
Dean came out, making sure the ferrets didn't come out. "Did you tell him?"
"He tried to talk to me but I pointed out evil fucks who left people in a battle ring deserved to be shot and then beheaded," Dean told Xander, taking Sam's sword. "Geez, did you have to get the heavy ass one, Sammy?" He traded with Cougar. "Pretty soon you guys are going to get the different blades lessons."
Xander nodded. "Starting next week I'll be doing one of their practices with different types of blades so they understand it if they have to pick up anything. Also, Ryan's calling one Sunday if you guys are in town."
"I hope we are," Jensen agreed. They sat down to watch Dean and Xander work. They knew they'd get him again afterward. Dean and Sam's sparring gave them good tips because they were farther ahead and still had some common issues, but it was something they could watch and try to correct in themselves. The same as Sam and Dean could handle the dance parts better. Dean and Xander were only fighting in the dance style. Sam mostly used it but slipped back into the other style.
"I yield," Dean panted, leaning down. Xander rested his blade against his neck. Dean looked at him, getting stared at. "I know, Xander. I'm trying to build more stamina. We're going to start jogging or join a gym." Xander moved the sword with a nod and a smile. "I'm getting better."
"Much but most fights are still at least a half-hour and you're still getting too tired after twenty. Sometimes they've went on for hours. I had went that went on for two. Or, Goddess forbid, they steal you to a battle ring, Dean. Remember, demons know you and want to see you lose."
He nodded. "I know. I'm working on it."
"I'd give you some of my mermaid DNA but I don't think I can do that."
"No thanks. I like being human." He smirked and gave Xander a manly hug. "Those stories? Hot and I don't even like gay sex." He backed off. "We're going to swim today in the ocean."
"Ooooh," Xander sighed, staring at them.
"Go shower and we can go," Dean promised. Xander beamed and hurried inside. Dean looked at Jensen and Cougar. "Yeah, we need more stamina."
"We've got pretty good stamina but our building has a gym. If you want, you can come work out with us. Jolene's been making Pooch work out harder."
"We might. Thanks, guys. Are you going with?"
"Take Wade. We found out he's dating Anya," Jensen said, making himself stand up. He helped up Cougar. "How would you get mermaid DNA?"
"His high school swim coach," Sam said. "I asked." Cougar shook his head quickly, walking back inside to clean off and put up the blades.
"Any other odd things?" Jensen asked.
"Xander's very open to possessions and he tends to keep memories," Wade said from the doorway. "Am I going?"
"Yup. You could probably use a break from the pouncing and that way someone's watching out for us." Sam grinned. "Besides, things could get ugly. You know Xander only wears a speedo."
He nodded. "Let me pack a bag with cold packs and drinks." Xander was already doing that. "Are Jensen and Cougar coming?"
"Probably not. Jensen, would you please proofread the rest of those for me or make Aisha or someone do it?"
"I can see if she wants to since she's on the rag, so therefore not getting any," Jensen agreed. He got the laptop and he left with Cougar. If not, he could use some smut time. It was getting harder to find free porn these days.
Xander came out with towels, Wade carried the basket. All the ferrets were in the living room and so was Hubert. They left, taking Wade's car since it was fairly bland and usual. No one would try to steal it at the beach.
Jensen sat down in Clay's apartment. The rest were there. Jensen got into the computer, looking over the files. "Which one are the stories?" he muttered, checking a few. "Huh, found his journal." Clay glared at him. "Xander talked me into proofreading for him." He did a search for DNA and came up with the mermaid taint. "So that's how he did it." Cougar leaned over, frowning at that. "We found out today Xander has some mermaid DNA taint."
Clay looked confused. "They're real? Like on the disney movies?"
"No, apparently they're more like Swamp Thing. The coach did it to the swim team." He reread it.
"I doubt it's something that people would want his blood for," Pooch said.
"Hopefully not," Clay agreed.
Jensen looked for other diseases. What he saw made him go pale. Clay snatched the laptop from him to look over. He didn't look happy either. "I don't know if anyone else knows that."
"I'm not telling Wade," Clay said.
"Anya could. He was with her then."
He sighed. "That's a risk. Do we think Wade would turn on him?"
Pooch shrugged. "I don't know. He seems happier now. Less of a pain in the ass and homicidal. Why? What did he get exposed to?"
"Xander fell into a grave and got hit by some dead Natives."
"We need to have someone look to make sure it's not an issue," Jensen said. His mind was running. "Because if it is, he needs to know and so does the family."
"Horatio can do that," Pooch said. "He'd need to know anyway."
Jensen reached over Cougar to grab the phone, calling him. "Horatio, it's Jensen, we need to see you ASAP about Xander. No, not taken. I was proofreading and looking for stories and ran into his journal. No, like panic level problems." He hung up and looked at Clay again. "He, Dean, and Sam are in the ocean swimming. Wade's watching over them."
"I won't mind that. I'm not sure I want him to know but I don't think he'd hurt Xander without a huge reward since he's now wealthy and has Anya breaking him."
Jensen relaxed, getting up to answer the door. Aisha walked in. "Um, we're going to have to talk to Horatio about something sensitive."
"One of the GHS members?" she asked.
"Kinda. Kinda some problems possibly coming for one."
She nodded. "Then I'll go change." She headed into the bedroom.
Clay nodded. "I'm not sure," he said quietly, looking at Jensen.
"Me either. Or God, Roque?" he asked quietly.
"No," Pooch said. "He knows we'd destroy him and so will Xander. He's not stupid."
"We hope," Cougar put in.
"We'll play this as close as we can," Clay agreed. Horatio knocked then walked in. He handed over the laptop. "Jensen was proofreading," he said quietly.
Horatio read the section where it was, frowning. He paged up to see how that had started. "Oh, damn," he muttered. He looked at Clay. "Who knows?"
"Us so far. I'm not sure about Wade. They're swimming today."
"Good. I'll handle this. Are we telling Wade?"
"We're not real sure, but we found out Wade is dating Anya."
"Xander's..." They all nodded. "Interesting. All right. Let me test it and I will make sure you hear the results." He handed it back. "The stories are all in the 'mine' folder." He left, going to find the boy so he could draw some blood. With a quick stop back at the lab. He walked into the morgue. "Alexx, I need vials that would be for running blood for viral samples."
"I've recently found out someone got exposed to smallpox a long time ago. I want to make sure it's not dangerous for Miami."
"Okay. Did one of us get it?"
"Not quite. One of the team." She nodded and got him what he'd need, including the needle. "Thank you." He grabbed some gloves and headed back to the hummer. He knew where the boys went to swim. He parked and got out, walking down to where Wade was sunning himself. "I need to see Xander for a moment."
"Problems?" Wade asked.
Horatio stared at him. "What has Anya said about Thanksgiving?"
Wade grimaced. "I heard. She complained last night about not getting to curse them."
"May I ask what you're going to do with this knowledge?"
"Not a damn thing unless he turns on me."
"Thank you. It's a worry we have to have with him."
Wade nodded. "Yes it is. Who else...."
"Jensen ran into his journal by accident."
"So the team? Aisha?"
"Not that I've been told."
"That's a relief. I trust Clay to be good. His team too. Her, I'm not real sure."
Horatio nodded. "I think they were worried about you for the same reason."
"That's reasonable. I accept things like that happening, Horatio. Let's not let the poker circuit know though."
"Please." He looked out and whistled, drawing a lot of attention. "Xander!" He swam in and grinned, bouncing up to him. "I need to see you at the hummer," he said, staring at him.
"Jensen ran into your journal, kid," Wade told him.
"Shit, that was that computer," Xander muttered.
"Exactly, so we're going to see if it's a problem that might occur or a reason you might be stolen," Horatio said. "Especially with how slowly you heal and come back."
Xander nodded. "That's reasonable I guess. So blood?"
Horatio nodded. "In the hummer." He walked the boy that way. He sat him on the end of the tailgate and got what he needed. The beach cop on duty came over. "I'm drawing a reference sample," he said dryly. "It's not an issue."
"Yes, Lieutenant. Is he a problem beyond making people rush the beverage cart for cool drinks?" He glared at Xander.
"No. We need some DNA in the system in case he's stolen again." He put on the gloves and found a vein. He smiled at Xander. "Not my best skill." Wade came up and did it for him. "That is handy."
"In the field we often have to handle ourselves." He glared at the other officer. "Commando, beach boy. Go back to hitting on the college girls." He huffed off. "By the way that one you just fucked, she was only sixteen. I hit on her earlier." Horatio moaned, shaking his head. "Idiot. Most of the PD is really good. But some...." He changed vials. One last one and he withdrew the needle. Horatio handed him a foam box to put it in. "Go swim."
"How long will it take?" Xander asked.
"A few hours, Xander. We'll let you know by dinner." Xander nodded. "Do you feel comfortable with me telling Pieter?"
"No. He got hacked the other day."
"That might be a good idea," he admitted quietly. "I think Greg knew."
"All right. I'll check with Greg. You go back to swimming." Xander nodded, heading back. "Thank you, Wade."
"I like the kid. He's nice, he's a good guy. I like working for him. He's scarier than Max but a lot more sane and we're preventing some of the other problems Max used to try to start." He went back to watching over the swimmers.
Horatio smiled, taking the blood back to the lab. That was very good to know. He got back to the lab and walked into Speed's lab. "I need some samples run with absolute silence," he said quietly.
"Of course. Why?" Horatio held up the blood. "For what?"
"Viral samples. We know they were exposed to smallpox and syphilis, both dead strains," Horatio said quietly.
"How did Xander do that?"
"He fell into a tomb and got it from a ghost."
"Ah. An 'only Xander' way." He took them. "Any others?"
"Not known. Test it for every viral possibility."
"Okay." He wasn't using that machine right now so he prepped the sample and ran it. "Few hours."
"I know." He smiled. "Thank you." He went to the office to call DC. "Greg, Horatio. Are you in public right now?" He checked the door. It was still closed and no one was outside. "Did you test Xander's blood for anything?" Greg moaned and said something in Latin. "We're sure?" He nodded, making notes. "I'm having it checked now. Yes, quietly. Speed is doing it himself. Please do. Yes, if so, he said we could brief Gibbs. Can you? I'll send it to you directly. No, not at your work email. I'll text you a photo of the results. Thank you, Greg." He hung up and took his notes to Speed. "From Greg."
Speed selected a few more tests to run as well. "We'll see." Horatio nodded and went to look over everyone else's shoulders. He did remember to dispose of that box properly in the biohazard bag.
Greg hung up and looked at Gibbs. "I need to talk to you *quietly*, boss."
"Why?" he asked, looking over from the report he was working on.
"Because people are discovering things that I've been hiding for someone for years."
"Is it going to impact your job here?"
"No, but someone will want this intel *hard*." Gibbs gave him an odd look. "Please?"
"Fine." He got up and Greg handed him his coffee cup on the way to the elevator. He pointed at Tony to stay. Gibbs stranded them and looked at him. Greg cleared his throat. "Are we sure there's no way anyone is listening?"
"Is it that bad?"
"Yeah." He got into his phone and held up the report he had a photo of. He enlarged it when Gibbs grimaced. Gibbs glared at him. "They're testing today to make sure."
"You?" Greg stared at him. "Xander," he said flatly. Greg nodded. "Damn it! Why didn't we know this before?"
"Because no one knew but Xander. Somehow Horatio at least knows. He's calling tonight with an updated one."
"Is he wearing a patch?"
"With what they are?" Greg asked. "That'd suck to come back to."
"Yeah, I suppose it would." He blinked, that was a wrinkle he didn't usually think about. "Who else knew?"
"Xander doesn't know I know. I found Xander's journal by accident. I think that's how Horatio found out."
"The new team down there?"
"I'm sure Horatio would warn them. I'm not sure about Wade, his new minion."
"Wade..." Greg pulled up that file to show him. "Uh-huh. Why does Xander have him?"
"He likes Xander. He's being his minion."
"Uh-huh." He handed the phone back. "All right." He thought. "When are you hearing?"
"The tests take about five hours at the most to run so by dinner," he said quietly. "Horatio called to see what I knew. That's why I went into Latin. Mostly because I don't want anyone, including Ziva, to know. We've found a bug in her desk," he said at the opening mouth.
"True. That was her father."
"We can't be sure he's not watching the team," Greg said.
"Point. All right. Are you going to tell Pieter?"
"No, he got hacked last weekend. I don't want anyone who doesn't need to know to know."
"Good." He sipped his coffee, but his gut instinct now had heartburn. "Do we think anyone who's taken him might know?"
"No. They weren't interested in blood. They might've taken swabs to check for STD's."
"Would that one show up?"
"No. It's a dead strain. Long dead strain. It wouldn't have shown up on that test."
"How did that happen?"
"He fell into some remains."
"Shit," Gibbs muttered.
"He keeps things from spirits bothering him. Memories from possessions, and instincts from the hyena. This time, they punished him for disturbing their rest. It got canceled after about a day but still...."
"It was a good idea to tell me, Sanders. DiNozzo's plague is bad enough to know about."
Greg smiled. "I did do the tests on his the other day. It's low enough it can't be cooked down right now. Unless he gets sick, then it'll probably go up."
"So as long as he's healthy it's good."
"Even a cold could make it worse."
"I needed to know that. Thank you." He restarted the elevator and went back to their desks. He took an antacid. If someone knew, they'd see a whole new group trying to steal Xander. "Do a background on that guy, Sanders."
"Talk to the team, boss," Tony said. "If you're talking about Wade, they know about him."
"I can do that," he decided. He called. "Clay, Gibbs. What do you know about Harris's minion? Because I'm worried. Yes, I did get told. Just now by Sanders, as was proper so it wouldn't get out." He listened. "That's fine. How sure are we? Horatio said... That's good to know." He listened, nodding at what he heard.
"If Xander goes out of the city, he is to be escorted by at least someone that good," he ordered. "Yes, especially if he wants to travel." He rubbed his forehead. "I'm sure there will be. No, Greg told me and there's one you don't know. Yes, beyond him." Tony's head popped up and he looked over. "I'll be down tonight." He grabbed a file out of his locked desk drawer and headed out. "No goofing off, DiNozzo. Get the reports done." He got onto the elevator and headed for the airport.
Clay hung up. "That's interesting. Gibbs said there's another with that sort of problem in the group. He's on his way down."
"Let me know when he lands and I'll have him picked up," Pooch said. Jensen nodded he'd check. "Do we think anyone else knows?"
"Greg Sanders was a CSI and a DNA person," Clay said. "That was before he quit Las Vegas's lab."
"Why would he?" Aisha asked. "That's the top local lab in the country."
"People there ragged because he was GHS," Jensen said simply. "Xander rescued him."
"That's good. Where is he now?"
"DC, NCIS under Gibbs. So we think he found another one?" Everyone nodded. "Okay." He let Horatio know they were adding someone to the meeting later. This was going to be bad.
Gibbs sat down at the table in the back room of the restaurant that Wade had arranged. "How bad, Horatio?" Horatio and Clay were in there and Wade looked the most relaxed of any of them.
"Very bad." He handed over the report. The other two took it after he was scowling. "What other one?"
"Tony," Gibbs said. "It got sent to the office." He handed over that report.
Wade looked. "I heard rumors but Max always thought it was a bad idea to try for it. It'd bring too much notice and he hated to hear people bitch because they were dying of some disease." He handed it to Horatio. "So, Xander has not two but six dead strains of diseases and two others we can't identify?"
Detective Mystick showed up and sat down, taking Xander's. "Two are demon viruses. He was sick during one of the battle rings." He handed it over. "We do keep a watch on both of them and Greg," he told Gibbs.
"Because he's a good lever to use against either one," Horatio said. Mystick nodded. Horatio considered the reports. "With what he is, we cannot put in a patch."
"He's not to go out of anywhere without a qualified, knowledgeable escort," Gibbs said. "If this had been known when he was in DC, he'd have been a target of a whole other group."
"Pieter, the head fo the retrieval teams, got hacked," Clay said.
"Greg told me that. I let it slip to Edgerton in case he heard of someone coming near Tony. Half of everyone in DC knows he got infected thanks to someone sending it to the office."
"Xander said no one knew about him," Horatio said. "He thinks that Greg did know."
"Clearly," Gibbs agreed. "Can we agree on telling Edgerton?"
"Definitely," Wade agreed. "He wanted to travel soon. He mentioned London, Paris, and St. Petersburg."
"There's no way I want him in Russia," Gibbs ordered. That got a nod. "Can you arrange to have him guarded when he's out of town?"
"I can travel with him if I need to," Wade assured him. "Hold on, we have to ask Anya who she told."
"I'm about to say if she tells, she's expendable," Clay told him.
Wade nodded. "She's good but not mine in another eight months."
"We can talk to her," Horatio ordered. "Not kill her. Not unless it's necessary, boys." They nodded at that.
Gibbs looked at Clay then at Wade. "You two were in the field too long." They nodded at that. "Anya? Xander's ex?"
"Yes," Wade agreed. "Which is fairly creepy but he sympathizes with my thrown back now." He looked at Clay. "Back when they were dating, he was working construction all day, then patrolling however long, then doing her."
"No wonder he never sleeps."
"Yeah. Basically. I'm starting to have phenomenal stamina thanks to her."
"Maybe I'll let Jensen buy her later then," Clay quipped.
"Why was she bought?" Gibbs asked.
"Debt," Wade said.
"So she's not generally for rent." Wade shook his head. "If she has told someone, we need to know who. We need to handle it. Everyone knows that I'll kill whoever comes after DiNozzo."
"Xander's respected a whole lot and has scared a lot more," Wade said. "But I can think of about eighty people off the top of my head who'd love a sample."
"I passed off the extra I have to a quiet researcher to make antibodies," Horatio offered.
"Good!" Gibbs agreed. "I like the one that helped DiNozzo. Can I brief him?"
"Please if he can make a treatment."
"I'll see." Gibbs looked at the report. "Do we have copies?"
"Only that one," Horatio said. "I had Speed run it himself."
"Thank you," Gibbs said, looking at them. "Are we explaining this to him?"
"Yes," Horatio said.
"He's out at the bar nibbling and having a coffee," Wade said, going to get him. He found Anya and brought them both. "Anya, one question then you can go back to the bar. Did you tell anyone about Thanksgiving?" he asked, staring at her.
"Why would I have?" she asked.
"Because people could kill me for it," Xander said dryly.
"Oh! Oh, no. No, I wouldn't do that. I'd hate to have Xander killed." She looked at Wade. "Is it a worry?"
"A huge one. Someone found out." She nodded. "So, let us talk and then we'll hit dinner."
"Okay." She took a kiss and left them alone to their guy talk.
Wade sat down once Xander did. "It's bad."
"There's two demon viruses," Mystick said. "Plus a few others." He let him see it.
Xander read it, frowning. "That's..." Wade leaned over to explain what each one was. "When did I get that?"
"Battle ring," Mystick said.
"Oh! Okay. That makes more sense." He sighed as he put it down. "Hi, Gibbs."
"Xander. Greg was right not to let me know until he had to." Xander grinned. "How many might know?"
"No one unless they hacked the home system."
Clay called Jensen. "When you fixed Xander's laptops, did you find evidence of hacking on that one?" He waited while he looked. "Thanks. Yes, protect that." He hung up. "No, that one was not hacked. That one's not working with your wifi." Xander nodded. "Which is probably why you put it on that one?"
"That was my original one."
"That's fine. He's going to password protect it and encrypt it. It'll be something you can remember so you can add to it."
"Okay," he said quietly. "Is this a real worry?"
"Only if other people find out," Horatio told him. "Which means we're going to institute some help. Here in Miami, no one would usually touch you." Xander nodded. "We like that. You can keep playing poker as long as that doesn't change."
"I'm not winning as often but I'm not really losing either," Xander said.
"Good. As long as you're not in danger."
"I shouldn't be."
"Even better." He smiled. "Anytime you're going to travel, you're going to have Wade or someone Clay picks to go with you."
"That would solve the problem of wanting to travel," Xander agreed. "Are Don and Danny enough?"
"No," Gibbs said, shaking his head slightly. "Sorry. They're good but these are people who want to be Max and might try it. They'd have no trouble taking out Flack or Messer."
"That's reasonable I guess." He looked at Wade. "So I guess if I do get to travel..."
"I'll be in the next room," he agreed. Xander relaxed and nodded. "If I can't, Clay has a whole list of people he trusts."
Xander looked at him. "Is Roque one?"
"No. Even before he turned on me, no. You two wouldn't get along well and you'd end up attacking him probably. I'd never do that to you, kid." Xander nodded. "Aisha either. I'm not telling her because I don't think she'd do anything with it but I can't be sure."
"Thank you," Xander said quietly. "I'm sorry I started off a panic."
"You didn't," Horatio said. "You're also not the only one. We should have dealt with plans for this problem because of Tony having the plague."
"Shit, Buffy and Willow, Giles were all there then," Xander realized. "The LA team might know too. Angel most likely."
"We can tell Epps and have him talk to them," Gibbs said calmly. "Epps would protect you if you were out there." Xander nodded. "Edgerton knows about Tony."
"That'd be fine with me."
"Okay." He looked at the others. "Can we think of anyone else who has to know?"
"I think that's all that I want to know," Clay said. "How widespread is Tony's known?"
"Everyone should know. I'll talk to Pieter to make sure he has a plan."
"Soshar did before he had to retire. So did Paul," Xander told him. "Paul did know about mine. I told him when he was trying to stop a bleeding spot during a rescue but I know Paul wouldn't tell even under torture."
"No, they wouldn't," Gibbs agreed. "I'll talk to them first and let them brief Pieter. Plus get him some computer help."
Clay nodded. "He's got so many problems in his system thanks to his teenage son finding porn."
"I'll let him know. All right. Do you guys want me to tell Edgerton and them?"
"I will talk to Don Epps myself," Horatio said. "Or you can tell Edgerton and have him brief Don."
"I think that might be safer," Gibbs decided. "Less traveling too. Soshar and Paul both live in Virginia. I can stop there on the way home."
"Need a bed tonight, Gibbs?" Xander asked.
"I'm booked on a flight in three hours." He smiled. "Thank you though."
"It's not a problem. You know that."
"I know. The same as I know if DiNozzo or Sanders ever needed it they could run to you because they're family." Xander nodded. "I am not telling Ziva because she's had her father spying on her. I will be telling DiNozzo so he's aware. He's usually up to date on whoever's looking at his blood."
"No. Or Abby. Ducky but no one else. That way he's aware and can step in to brief someone if it comes up."
"Okay. I can understand that."
"Ducky Mallard?" Clay asked.
"Yes. He's our ME."
"With his background, he won't say a word," Wade agreed. "If someone does manage it he can brief anyone in a hospital. They'd listen to an ME when they wouldn't us."
"Do we think Don will tell anyone on his team?"
"Probably not," Gibbs assured him.
"Okay, then I can agree with that. I'm not mean about sensible restrictions."
"Which we like about you," Horatio assured him with a smile. "You're reasonable when we're protecting you." He patted his hand. "Speed sent a hug."
"Cuddle him back for me."
"I will." He smiled at the others. "Gibbs, go ahead and take that report. Clay...." He took a picture of it. "Have a good trip back, Gibbs."
"I'll try." He smiled at Xander. "We'll make sure it won't hurt you." Xander nodded. Gibbs left, going back to the airport with those papers. Horatio had a 'classified' envelope for him to carry it in. That way no one could sneak a peak without him knowing.
"I promised Anya dinner out somewhere swanky to show off her new clothes and shoes." Wade stood up. "Going home, Xander?"
"Yup. Unless Clay needs me to help brief them?"
"No. We're good," Clay assured him. "Go cuddle your boys." Xander nodded and headed out. Clay leaned back, looking at Horatio and Wade. "At least he's reasonable."
"He did the sensible thing and didn't tell anyone," Horatio said. "I'm very happy with that."
Clay nodded. "Us too. You only know eighty, Wade?"
"Off the top of my head." He shrugged. "Some might even be in custody by now." He left, going to gather Anya from the bar.
Clay and Horatio shared a look. "I'll start making a favored list for the ones down here."
"Thank you," he said quietly. "I'll be at home if you need me." He left, going home to cuddle Speed as ordered. He found him in the hot tub and stripped so he could cuddle in next to him. "Xander sent a cuddle for your hug."
"I like that about him." He snuggled in and let Horatio relax again.
Clay walked into his apartment. "Aisha, I need to brief them about a friend."
"Bad news?" she asked.
"Very bad news." She nodded and left them alone, going to talk to Jolene for a few minutes. Clay held up the picture he had taken on his phone of both reports. Jensen took it, groaning. He handed it to Pooch, who shook his head. Cougar grimaced.
"The second?" Pooch asked.
"DiNozzo," Clay said quietly, glancing at the door then back at them. "The other is very bad."
"Knew. Anya." That got a mass nod. "He said he'll make sure she doesn't tell."
"That's good," Jensen agreed.
"We're making a list of responsible people in case Xander needs to leave Miami. Gibbs suggested it and Xander agreed."
"That's reasonable," Pooch agreed. "Who else might know?"
"A sniper..." Clay said with a smirk. "And his buddy in LA. Those three on Gibbs team that're family. Paul and Soshar. Paul already knew. Gibbs is briefing."
"How do we want to sort the list?" Jensen asked. "Agent, commando training, spook?"
"At least someone we'd trust absolutely to guard a target," Clay said. "Xander's been talking about taking some traveling time. Wade said he'd go but...." That got a nod. "So let's start a list of people we'd let sub on retrieval teams," he said, spotting a shadow under the door. He walked over when it was knocked on, smiling at one of their normal neighbors. "Problems?"
"Two. Can I have you open my pickles? And can you please come shoot the rat in the gym?"
He opened the pickles and grabbed a small, silenced handgun to go get the rat. He was a nice neighbor. The others in the building adored their team.
Gibbs knocked on a door, watching as the sniper he had picked up got out of his car. "Soshar, we need to talk," he said, walking inside.
"I heard that before. Paul's in the office. Hey, Ian." He led them that way and closed them in, starting the bug jammer. Ian put down one of his own. "This looks bad, guys. Which GHS was it?"
Gibbs looked at them. "We're all aware that Tony had the plague?"
"He had what?" Ian demanded. Gibbs handed over the report. "How long ago and how well known? I know you said he had something that would get the blood hunters on him."
"Around town, heavily," Soshar said. "We've watched to make sure no one was paying attention to Tony about that. Oh, you heard about Xander," he realized. Paul sighed. Gibbs handed over that report. "That's worse than I thought." He handed it to Paul.
"We have one small thing to balance against it. Xander now has Wade, who used to work for that idiot Max, as his minion."
Ian looked at him. "Still?"
"Yeah. He agreed, no one's going to know outside of us and Epps."
"I can brief Epps," Ian agreed. "Who on your team knows?"
"Greg told me earlier. I'm not telling anyone beyond DiNozzo and Ducky."
"That's reasonable. Tony keeps track of that stuff too," Soshar agreed. "Epps would hear about anyone in LA. Wade probably knows most of the germ docs out there."
"He agreed, and Xander agreed, that it was reasonable that he was going to be escorted whenever he left Miami."
"Which means I don't have to help him shop again," Ian said dryly. He handed back the report. Soshar copied it for him. "Thanks. I'll see Epps soon." He looked around. "Do we have plans in case it's a germ doc instead?"
"Work harder and faster," Paul said. "I asked Tony to put in a suicide patch."
"He has one," Gibbs assured him. "I'd suggest that with Xander but it's not real practical considering what he is."
"No, it's not," Ian agreed. "He's taking precautions?"
"As many as he knew how to take," Soshar agreed. "What about those who were there and know?"
"I can have Epps growl at the Sunnydale and LA teams," Ian said.
"That's what Xander suggested," Gibbs agreed.
"My next one is out that way. I'm nearly done with the one locally."
"As soon as possible. Just in case. Horatio and Wade both say that the poker circle down there probably doesn't know. The computer with his journal wasn't hacked. Their computer geek is guarding the journal heavily."
"I heard about Clay's computer geek. That's a good thing," Ian said.
Soshar smiled. "Thank you for the heartburn, Gibbs."
"As long as I don't have to shoot another diplomat or commando coming for DiNozzo or Sanders," Gibbs said, standing up. "Thanks, guys. Let me know if we have to put more hardcore plans into place." They nodded. "Ian?"
"Coming." He looked at them, taking his bug jammer back. "Thanks for the headache, guys." He left. Once they got into the car, the jammer made something squeal. Gibbs looked at it then tossed it out. "Interesting."
"Vance," he muttered. "We implanted a jammer in the elevator." He drove them back to DC, letting Ian off on the way. He found Sanders and DiNozzo in his house. "Did you tell him?"
"Yes," Greg said. "After killing the bugs in your basement."
"I just found one in my car."
"Can I have Pieter go visiting, boss?" Tony asked.
"No. That's unethical. Unfortunately." He looked at Tony. "They'll make sure all the retrieval teams hear that there is a possible issue with yours and maybe someone else who was exposed to things. Pieter is getting computer help. Edgerton is going to tell Epps and only Epps."
Tony nodded. "How bad is Xander's?" Gibbs handed him the report. "Damn. That makes mine look weak."
"Exactly," Gibbs agreed. "So listen harder."
"Of course." He tore it up.
"I have a photo copy protected in my phone," Greg said. That got a nod from the other two. "We made dinner."
"Thank you." He went to get some and it was good. It was nice when those two got bored.
Ian landed in LA a week later, exhausted as hell. He called Don. "Meet me somewhere absolutely secure. Yes, I mean totally." He hung up and grabbed his bags, heading out to the rental car place he used. He put his bug jammer on the dashboard. Fortunately it didn't go off. He drove to the coordinates Epps sent him in the national park outside of the city. He parked and got out, hiking the last thousand feet. "Hi," he said, handing over the sealed envelope.
"That bad?" He opened it and read, shuddering. "Who?"
"Trouble magnets within the group."
"I heard DiNozzo had the plague. Miami?" he asked quietly, looking around. Ian smugly nodded. "Great."
"He's reasonable but no one knew outside of Soshar and Paul. And the ones who were there when it happened."
"I can growl at them."
"I can back you up. Just in case. Oh, new minion in Miami." Some hikers were coming near, he could hear them talking. "Harris has a minion now."
"Good or bad minion?"
"Used to be bad, commando trained.... And they have a retrieval team that's full commandos."
Ian snickered. "I've heard of them. They're a great team but not real nice about it."
"Even better. So he's guarded?"
"Yes. For now."
"Okay. Want to go up tomorrow?"
"Definitely. I need some sleep."
"I noticed. I have a spare bed."
"Saves me money," he agreed, following him back to the cars. "That is the only non photo'd copy."
Don nodded. "I'll shred it twice." They got in and drove back to the Federal building. Ian checked in to get his information file and went to take a nap. Don shredded the paper as many times as he could. He did not want anyone to know that. They did not need people after Xander for that reason and his hormones.
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