Notes: a bit angsty
Moving Your Body.
Xander looked at his options for what to do to cure his new boredom. The students were pouty because they had both done really poorly that day so Xander had told them to stretch, meditate, and get right with their feet's purpose. Finally, he decided on a plan. "C'mon, there' s a way to learn better footwork."
Cougar looked at him like he was insane. Jensen shrugged. "We've both been playing soccer, Xander."
"I don't think that's helping and it's not the right sort of footwork." He stared at them. "C'mon, we can easily find a class."
"On sword footwork?"
"No, on whole body work." He got up and hauled Jensen up with him. Cougar sighed but followed him to the SUV. He even got to drive since he was the only one who knew where they were going. "We're making one stop first so I can find out where the place is." He slid into the driver's seat and they got into the back. They were conspiring on how to keep him calmer, he knew that, but it was his scared duty to get around them while still teaching them what they needed to know. He drove off, waving at the gate guards on his way past them.
The head guard shook his head. "That's a look that doesn't bode well for his poor students. That's the mischief look."
"How do you know?" the younger guard asked.
"I've seen him go out with that look and be escorted back because he got too happy and also with a ton of shopping done. It's always a bad thing that his boyfriends will have to cure later tonight." The younger one just nodded, he knew he was with two detectives.
Xander walked the students into a dance studio, earning a funny look. "I'm teaching them sword work and we all need to learn how to dance. I've actually learned belly dancing and a few other styles," he told the teacher. Cougar was glaring. He glared back. "It should be more normal for you anyway, Silent Bob." Jensen cackled.
"Sure, we can work on that. You need it for footwork, guys?" the teacher asked.
"That and whole body work. They're kinda...stiff," Xander admitted. Cougar was still glaring so he swatted him and pointed. "Follow." The teacher snickered into the dance room. "I know that belly dancing improved my stamina and gracefulness. They need a lot help with footwork."
"We teach multiple styles here. We can go through everything from jazz to tap to salsa dancing."
"I was thinking the last may help a lot," Xander admitted. "It's all body movement."
"It is." He smiled at Cougar. "Cubano?"
"Mexican," he said. He wasn't sure about this idea. It seemed a bit...strange to him. He knew how to move. The guy did a demonstration with Xander, who was still a bit too stiff but better than he was. He gaped.
"Plus footwork and learning how to hold your body different and how to use your legs better," Jensen sighed. He was so sunk. "I suck at dancing," he warned.
The teacher smiled and got some of his better students in to work with them. "We'll see."
"Master Paulo," one said with a grin. "What are we teaching them?"
"Start with the standard salsa lessons." She nodded and took Cougar since he looked more comfortable in his body. The other one looked nervous.
Jensen got taken by the other girl, making him grin at her. "I'm not used to this. I can barely get down in the clubs."
"That's fine. It's good for a man. Makes him understand his body better," she said with a teasing smile. "My brother took them on a dare and he suddenly was able to get girlfriends." Cougar snickered at that, shaking his head. "He was one of those role playing geeks."
"I was one of those too," Jensen admitted. Xander texted someone then went back to his own lessons. "He's so much better than I am."
"That's because he understands and follows the intent." She looked at him. "This sort of dancing is all about heat, passion, showing the girl how well you're going to give it to her later." Jensen nodded at that, concentrating harder. "Quite scrunching up your nose," she said patiently.
"Think of it this way. Your body is showing a girl what you can do for her. You want her to be hot, wet, and want you by the end of the dance." Jensen nodded. "Let it go. Technically correct is great but for right now, let's do it free form to the music. Just follow along." He nodded, following where she lead. He still stumbled a bit but the footwork was harder than soccer was.
Anya walked in with an envelope for Xander. "You started without me?" she pouted.
Xander grinned. "Master Paulo, this is my former girlfriend and now my assistant's girlfriend, Anya. She took belly dancing lessons with me."
"She should be easy enough to teach as well then." He tested her and she giggled but let her inner slutty nature out. "Less pounce me now, more let me amaze you with my skills, dear," he said patiently. She reigned it in some and they had a good lesson. The boys were much better at it. They looked more relaxed too. That was better. Xander paid him and they drove off in his SUV. "I hope that club will help."
"They were adorable," the one who had danced with Jensen said with a smile. "He was so geeky, just like my brother."
"I sent them the same place I sent your brother to finally find a girlfriend." He called the owner of that club to warn him he had sent newbies who weren't Cuban down to him.
Xander got out at the club, walking inside. The bouncer gave him a dirty look. "What better way to learn?"
"Aren't you gay, sir?"
"Yup, but I did bring my ex girlfriend. I learned belly dancing with her." The bouncer shook his head but let them in. The owner came over to talk to Xander, who grinned and babbled back at him. They had people who could teach them better. He knew a few fantastic dancers who would do the boys good. Xander and Anya got put with a group off to the side since they could already move. He was actually very good and she was just this side of having him on the floor. The two boys got put with nice women who would claw them up in the bedroom and then walk over their mangled corpses if they weren't careful and good to them.
Cougar tipped his hat. That one smirked and walked him off by the front of his shirt. "We're still learning," he told her.
She shrugged. "I'm a very good teacher," she said smugly. "Because all the men want me."
He looked her over. "Yes, they do." He let her teach him and it was much better. It was something his people didn't do. Apparently Mexico wasn't on the cutting edge of Latin dancing but he did pretty good.
Jensen was nervous and the girl snickered but promised him if he was a good boy she'd let him give her a kiss. If she was really impressed she might even let him grope a bit. Jensen smirked and it was on.
The owner sighed. They were good girls and he knew that. The one was still a bit stiff. Must be Mexican instead of lower Central American. The white boy was still a bit uptight but she was laughing and teaching him how to move his hips. That helped a lot. He looked over as some tall, strong white guy walked in. "Officer," he said.
Wade smirked. "Not hardly. Anya's mine." The owner pointed at her and Xander. "I didn't know she could do that." He walked out there, cutting in. "She's mine, Harris," he growled.
Xander grinned. "Sure, Wade. Not like I was poaching." He strolled off, getting picked up by a wilder woman. His old bad girl drawing power was back in full force and fully charged. This one was clearly dangerous by the bodice dagger and the fact that she owed him about two grand from a poker game. She shivered when he moved her and it was good to see. Yup, he still had it.
Wade looked over then at her. "You're both too dangerous."
She ran her fingernail over his lip. "You like me this way." She turned to dance against his chest, making him hold her hips. He was growling and it was good to tease. She had forgotten how to tease. Teasing Wade always got her pounced later but she needed to relearn the art of the tease. She glanced over at Xander then up at him. "Should we rescue her panties before they get too wet and dissolve?"
Wade snickered. "I know he won't follow through. He's a colossal tease." He looked at Cougar and Jensen. Cougar was doing better, but still much too polite. Jensen was still uptight. He got them a drink and sent it to them. That helped Cougar some. Jensen was still nervous so he let Anya go tease herself with him too. Two women dancing with Jensen made him a happy boy who relaxed and let it flow. Then she strolled back to him and kissed him before making him dance some more. "I'm not exactly used to this style of dancing," he complained.
"So?" She smirked. "It's all about proving you're great in bed, Wade. You should let more of that show."
"If I do that here, we'll both end up in jail." She cackled and kissed him then made him dance with her anyway. He relaxed and it was easier. She was a wonderful tease.
"Puta!" someone yelled then slapped someone else.
Xander looked over. "Even if she is, are you setting up advertising for her?" That one stomped off. He looked at his own date. "Fighting over a man. How pitiful."
His date growled. "I could do much for a man like you, Xander."
"Hmm, but my boys might mind."
"You move much too well with a woman to be fully gay."
"Yeah but I got fucked over by the women in my life." He winked. "I should get you to teach Danny and Don too."
She laughed. "I should teach the lieutenant. He can move."
"He claims Speed does it better."
"Hmm, a challenge."
"They're married too."
"I know and it's a pity how many of the pretty men are gay."
"We try harder to be pretty, dear." He dipped her and snapped her back up, making her gasp. "It's just the men we are." She moaned and he smirked, dancing off with her once the song had changed. It was great to start teasing again. He had missed being the huge tease he was. Greg was taking dance lessons too so maybe he'd have to see how well he did to tease Tony and make Tony pounce Greg again.
"You wish I was male?" she taunted.
"No. Now and then women have a place in my life. I wish my boys were here watching because I'd get righteously fucked in a way that made anyone watching want to beg them for it too." She moaned again. He smirked and twirled her out then back, making her whimper when she slid down his front. "That's a pretty place for you, Bec."
"Slut," she taunted.
He nodded. "Only for my boys though. That's why I learned pole dancing." She whimpered again and he can see the shivers start. He finished getting her off during the next song and she wobbles to the bar to get a drink. He turns and finds Horatio standing there. "Hi, H."
"Xander. Fancy meeting you here."
"Jen and Cougar needed help learning how to move. What better way?"
"Hmm. Good point." He looked. Both boys were gone now. Then at him. "They went with their ladies of choice."
Xander looked around. "Anya and Wade left too, huh?"
"Yes, they did. All the way to the alley. It was her squealing that got the club busted." He walked Xander out. "You did look very hot out there." Xander grinned at him. "Isn't she in the circle?"
"Yup. Later, Bec."
She weakly waved. "It's a pity he's gay," she moaned. "That man could do much for me." She finished her drink, got another one, and went to pick a better lover for the night. It was a pity, Xander could probably ruin her for lesser men.
Xander let the guys go into the barn before him. He was talking over what they needed to restock the farm this month with the foreman.
"Xander?" Jensen called, sounding a bit creeped out. "Why did you stick a horn on a pony?"
"It's not," Xander called. He grinned. "I can send it home again in a few days."
"Honestly, the thing's cute and it likes to romp and play. We can't pet it but it's adorable."
Xander grinned at his foreman. "It showed up before too." He walked that way. "Give me a day to find the checkbook."
"Thanks, Xander." He went to the house to make notes.
Xander walked into the barn, smiling. "What are you guys doing inside today?"
"The main paddock has a gopher," one of the farm guys said. "So you'll have to use the ring or the woods."
"We can do that." He smiled at the unicorn. "Want let out so you can wander?" He let the little one out, letting it sniff Cougar and then Jensen, bleeting at them. "Aww, he likes you."
Cougar called Jolene to come out to the farm with the baby. He'd like horses. Then he let Xander teach him how to pet a horse. The horse kept trying for his hat but oh well.
"Leave the hat alone," Xander ordered. "You know better, Princess." He pulled Jensen closer. "This is my pretty one, Pride. He's very sweet. Here, pet him like this," he said calmly, letting him do it. The unicorn sniffed him and bleeted. "I know, I need to get Anya to make that innocence potion so we can pet you." He smiled and handed him a carrot from the bucket. The unicorn ate it on his way outside.
"He's very sweet." He texted to Anya that he needed his checkbook, which Wade had, and that the unicorn foal needed petted so could she make that potion? Then he put his phone up and pulled Princess out to teach Cougar how to saddle her. He nodded, petting her while Xander did her bridle. Xander pulled out Pride and let Jensen learn. Then he pulled out Countess.
The others pouted. "We're going to the woods. Your turn is tomorrow unless Dean and Sam show up. If you want to use some horse telepathy, go ahead." He mounted. "Just like that, guys." They mounted, looking hesitant. "All right. Cougar, straighten your back. Jensen, sit still." They did that and he clicked and waved. The horses followed, letting the riders cling for dear life. "Like on the motorcycle, grip with your knees," he said patiently. They did that and slowly got comfortable walking around the ring.
The foal came out to trot around with them. Xander grinned. "You do that very well, sweetheart. Some day maybe you'll find a nice virgin to ride you." The unicorn seemed to grin and trotted over to look at the new people showing up. Xander opened the gate for them all. "C'mon, guys. We're doing the lesser loop today. It's about an hour's ride. Martin, can you please saddle the other Princess?" he called.
Jolene stared. "They're very big, Xander."
"They're very gentle unless they need to be protective," Xander said, taking the baby from her and putting him in front of him. The baby cooed, petting the horse, then looking at him. "That's a horsey. This is Countess." The foal came over to sniff the baby, bleeting happily. "Easy," Xander warned. He dismounted with the baby, squatting down so the unicorn foal could sniff him.
"Xander, is that...." Jolene said.
"Yeah." He grinned. "He showed up before too." The unicorn was letting the baby pat him. "Gently," Xander ordered, showing him how to do it without touching the foal himself. "Just like that." The baby patted and beamed at his mommy.
"You're all insane," she said.
"Only some days," Jensen quipped. "Aww. We need a picture of them together."
She glared at him. "No we don't. He's too young to ride." Pooch drove up and parked, getting out. "Pooch! Get over here and look at your son!"
He came over, staring. "That's a unicorn."
"And your son is still young enough and innocent enough to pet him," Xander quipped. "Unlike us unless Anya can make that potion." Pooch moaned, shaking his head. The unicorn was nuzzling him so he let the baby sit on his own and backed away. The unicorn nuzzled, lapped him, then crawled up to snuggle. The baby cooed and petted more gently. Xander and Jensen both took pictures.
So did Pooch, who sent it to Clay. "Clay will never believe this." Jensen was sending it to his sister. "Think Jess'll like it?"
"Maybe." He took another one when the unicorn was lapping the baby's face again. "Awww. Unicorn kisses." Cougar hit him with his hat. "Hey!" Pride moved. "No, don't move. We're good right here," he promised. "Whoa, horsey."
"He's just shifting," Xander said dryly. "Calm down, Jensen."
Wade and Anya pulled up and she got out, taking a small vial of fluid to drink. "Aww, who's the sweetheart?" she cooed, kneeling beside them to pet it herself. "You're very soft. Awww!"
Wade handed Xander the checkbook with a headshake. "I guess I'll have to be sweet tonight since she's pure again."
"Don't talk about sex around the baby," Pooch ordered.
Xander grinned. "Did you make more?"
"I have some started." She smiled. "He's very adorable."
"He is." He wanted to pet the unicorn *so* badly. The unicorn sucked up all the attention he could. The baby was getting sleepy and ended up curled up against the unicorn's side, hugging him like he was a teddy bear.
Pooch stared. "That might be a bad thing," he muttered. "Junior, he's not a teddy," he said. The unicorn growled at him. "Hey, he's my son." The unicorn nuzzled him and then lapped at Anya, making a grossed out face.
"I know, it's the potion," she sighed. "But it's the only way I can pet you." She went back to straightening out his mane. She ran off to get the combs and came back to take care of his coat for him. He was very happy.
Jensen's sister showed up and got out of the car, giving them an odd look. Her daughter popped out and jogged over, squealing in joy. "Oh my God, it's a unicorn, Mom! A real one!" She knelt next to them to pet the poor thing too. "Hi, Junior." She looked at Anya. "Why can you pet him?"
"I took a potion." She went back to combing him. "Xander, take them for their first ride and then come back. I can make the potion by tomorrow." He nodded and mounted, walking them off. Jensen and Cougar followed because their horses knew to.
Jensen's sister Julia took a lot of pictures, shaking her head. "I'm finding that 'only Xander' is a special category of life."
"It is," Anya said with a grin. "He's very good at it though."
Wade heard a shot. "Xander?" he called.
"Snake," he called back. "Stay."
"Sure." He shrugged, watching the two kids and his girlfriend pet the horse. He was probably going to have to go mushy to break her back in. Which was making him shudder mentally. His tastes didn't really run to pure and innocent sorts. She smirked at him and he smirked back. So maybe they could do something slightly kinky instead. She liked some kinky things.
"Don't even think about sex around my son," Pooch ordered.
"Whatever." He walked off to talk to the guy in charge of the farm. "Supply time?" He nodded. Wade handed over the check he had ready, letting him smile and fill it out to cash it out. Wade was going to have to make sure the guy wasn't padding the fund but otherwise it was fine. Now if only he could work up a good 'taking a virgin' fantasy for tonight. Maybe a sacrificial altar? Some chains? Well, maybe not. She didn't really like religious things.
Don walked in the next night after an all day stakeout, finding Xander in the kitchen humming as he made snacks. "Taking a bubble bath?"
"Thinking about how and if to counter the innocence potion I took so I could pet the ultimate soft thing, the unicorn."
Don considered that. "So... you're back to virginal?"
Xander smirked and nodded. "Yeah." He finished his snack and headed for the bedroom.
Don groaned. "I'm exhausted," he complained.
"So we won't fix it to night, Don. I can pet him again tomorrow."
Danny stomped in and headed for Xander, kissing him. "Mine tonight," he growled.
"Innocence potion," Don said.
"What?" Danny complained.
"I took an innocence potion so I could pet the unicorn," Xander told him with a grin.
"How could you do this to us? You didn't ask?"
"I don't need to ask," Xander said dryly. "It's my ass." Danny huffed and went to the bathroom, slamming the door. "Want some chocolate to cure the PMS?" he called after him. "I thought that was my job in this 'ship."
Don cackled. "It is." He took his own kiss and grimaced. "Bad day, dear?" he called.
"Fine." Don looked at Xander. "If I wasn't exhausted, I'd do something spectacular that would make us both die again," he teased, running a hand up Xander's side. "'Cause I love it when you're tight." He took another kiss. "Will this mean you can't pet 'im?"
"Don't know." He took another kiss. "I can take another one tomorrow. Up to three days in a row or it's fully back and I might lose memories."
"We don't want that so we won't play with it after tomorrow." He took another kiss. "Let's rest?"
"We can rest." He got Don down onto the bed, stripped off, comfy, and fed him his snack to make him relax again. Danny apparently was going to spend all night in the tub like he was pretending to be Xander.
Danny was huffy the next morning and Speed shoved him into a room, following him to lock them inside. "What happened?"
"Xander did something totally stupid."
"He called confused this morning about why you were pissed off that he took something to temporarily suspend his ass's use so he could pet the unicorn." Danny glared. "This isn't like you."
"Uh-huh. You and Eric are both touchy. Did you take the wrong head?"
"Is this like a gathering fever?" he asked patiently.
Danny paused. "I don't think so."
"You don't think so." He opened the door. "Wolfe!" He came jogging in. "Are you feeling antsy and on edge?" he asked, closing the door again.
"No. It's just Danny and Eric. In Eric's case I'm pretty sure it's to do with the stupid shit the newest immie in town is spreading. Is he blackmailing you too?" he asked Danny.
"Then why are you in a foul mood?"
"Because Xander did something totally stupid and selfish."
"It's not like a girl where she has a new hymen," Ryan said dryly. "There's no way to tell outside of the extra tightness."
"Like you know," Danny said snidely.
Ryan looked at him then pulled out the holy water he carried to splash him. Danny shrieked.
Speed pulled out his phone. "Dean, Speed. Danny shrieked at holy water." He hung up. "We'll figure it out."
"Please since he smells like vodka," Ryan said.
Speed sniffed. "He does." He nodded. "Huh. Xander would hate that. He hates it when people drink around him." Horatio knocked and Ryan let him in. "He shrieked at holy water. He's pissed at Xander for a stupid reason and he smells like he's drunk, H."
"Like you two don't have problems," Danny said snidely.
"Yes, that's clearly not Danny Messer." Horatio looked over as the door opened and Sam walked in. "Sam."
"Horatio." He smiled and looked at Danny. "You yelped at holy water?"
"No, I shrieked because it was stinky."
"Uh-huh." Sam moved closer.
Horatio watched then looked at Ryan, who smirked and left them alone to call Xander. Clearly something was wrong with Sam as well. Dean was almost humming. That was odd for Dean Winchester. He didn't exactly *hum*.
Xander came in wearing marked leathers and a t-shirt, plus some flat shoes. He waved at the receptionist. "Depossessing someone," he muttered. She shuddered. "Yup." He walked up there, starting with Dean so he could drag him off. "You know, it's strange when I walk up to someone I know is an immie and I don't feel them." Sam gave him a horrified look. "Yeah. By the way, the way I'm reading, unless Ryan and Eric are off in a far corner over a thousand feet away...." Horatio went to check that. Xander stared at them. "Speed, we're going to check out for a bit."
"Sure, I can handle that excuse."
"Call Bobby, see if the wonder twins are there if they aren't at Patrick's site." He handed over his phone since the number was in there. Xander brought them all to a demon realm he liked to have talks on. "Let's settle this, boys." They all attacked and Xander beat all their asses. He stared at them. "Did we think I just played around at the temple of Ares? That I only played a distraction?" He did a revealing spell, making them all shriek. "Huh. Ghouls. Cute." He made sure, that way he wasn't going to hurt anything else who might be innocent. Or even suppressed. No, still emoting ghouls. "Why come to Miami?"
"The guilt is sweet," the not Dean sneered.
"Hmm, some of us don't have guilt."
"That's not natural," one whined.
"Yay," Xander said. He patted himself down. Then he opened a portal to Jensen's place. "Did I leave my silver dagger there?"
"Yes. Why are you needing it for family members?"
"They're emotional ghouls. They feed off guilt. So we need to find them."
"Kill us and they're lost," one hissed. He tried to get up so Xander kicked him back down. "It's not fair! You don't have guilt!"
"I have guilt about some things but nothing you'll be able to feed off of." He killed it once he had the dagger. The others were quickly gotten and burned. Then he walked through the portal. "They came with the snowbirds probably." He smiled a weak grin. "Let me find my errant mate and family."
Jensen called up the tracker he had on Dean and Sam. "They're in the 'Glades." He printed out the map for him. "Want help?"
"Nah. We're good." He patted him on the shoulder and walked off, getting a cab home so he could get his car. Plus stuff to stabilize them for a few hours. It wasn't that hard to find them. The graves were pretty shallow. Don was hollering swear words. So was Dean, mixed with Sam's name. "Shut up," he called. "I'll get you two last."
They quieted down and Xander dug up the other graves first. Danny was alive but had his eyes closed as he concentrated. "Dear?" Danny blinked at him. "Hi." He moved to the next few. One wasn't alive. She also wasn't an immie. "Shit," he muttered. He dug up the others as quickly as he could. He saw a few more and called Horatio. He read off his GPS coordinates. "The ghouls that replaced them buried them here. I have at least one dead person." He hung up and went to the others he could see. "Guys, when did they replace you?" he called.
"Earlier," Don said, pulling himself out. He looked. "Shit, there's more. Xander.... Don't."
"They could be alive, Don."
"I know that. That's my job."
"You're shaken and I can dig."
"We'll end up with compromised evidence," Ryan groaned, pulling himself out. "Let us dig." He took the shovel. "Help the others." Xander nodded, going to get Danny out of his mind. Then he checked on Dean and Sam.
"This sucks," Sam said.
"I know," Dean agreed. He swatted at Xander. "Quit."
"They won't let me dig the other ones." He hauled them out. "The SUV is over there. There's water, food, and stuff in the back." They went to get what they needed. He gave Sam a look but got a head shake. "You sure?"
"I'm good. Freaked out but good." He patted him on the arm. "How did it not get you?"
"It said I don't have the right sort of guilt," Xander said dryly. Horatio's hummer pulled up with Frank behind him. "I heard Don and Dean freaking out."
"No, I was venting," Dean said. "A lot."
Horatio patted him on the arm. "It's normal to be freaked out." He came to look at the one body they already have. "Boys?"
"They wouldn't let me dig, Horatio," Xander called.
"Of course not," Frank agreed. "It could compromise evidence. Not all of them may have come from the same source."
Xander nodded he knew that. "I brought food and stuff."
"That's cool." He patted him on the arm. "Check them over. It's mentally breaking to wake up in a casket." He went to help. Horatio was staring in a casket and he sighed. "That's probably not whatever got the family," he agreed quietly.
"I've seen her before," Horatio said quietly.
Don quit digging and came over, looking. Then he sighed. "The one from the storm, guys." Horatio's face tightened and he nodded once. "I've got a few smaller ones as well."
"Let me," Frank ordered, taking the shovel to start over there. Don got another one to deal with the other graves.
Danny walked over. "I can help," he said.
Horatio looked at him. "No, you're still bothered," he ordered. "Help the others." Danny nodded, going to check on the boys. Dean brushed him off.
Xander looked at him and pulled him over to hug him. "Let me go!" Dean ordered.
"Nope." He waited until Dean quit struggling and squeezed harder. "I would've missed you," he whispered. "Both of you." Dean shivered and nodded, patting him so he let him go. He did the same to Sam, who finally broke. Dean walked his brother off. Xander looked at Danny. "Want one?"
"Yeah." He gave him a cuddle and relaxed until he was mostly normal. Then he went to spare Don's back and hands. "Let me."
Don nodded, going to get a hug from Xander. "This couldn't have all been those things."
Xander shook his head. "No, it wasn't the ghouls."
Don looked at him. "Like Voldemort?"
"Like the unfairly created shades of the dead that feed on guilt and the bad emotions. I guess the lab was a good feeding ground with all the criminals they see every day." Don nodded, relaxing again. "When?"
"Last night for me. I'm guessing Danny was earlier or he was actually drinking last night."
"We'll figure it out," Xander promised. Don finally got free and went to help again. More cruisers pulled up and a few gave him an odd look. "Don and Danny were among those buried," he said quietly.
"Damn," one said. "They okay?"
"They say they are."
The officers went to help dig in the approved PD manner. Horatio was still staring in a few graves. They were tiny bodies so they were all disturbed by it. "You'll get them, Lieutenant."
"Yes, I will be," Horatio promised. "They will not get away with this in my city." He looked back. "Boys, take Xander," he called.
Dean shook his head. "We're good, Horatio."
"This is now a crime scene. Even though you were part of it and Xander rescued you, go home. Rest, work through it, all that." Dean nodded, taking the keys. Sam put the supplies on the hood of a cruiser for them, earning a sad smile. Then Dean drove them off, Sam in the back with Xander. Horatio looked at the graves again. "Has anyone called the ME?"
"Not yet, sir," one reported. "We got ordered out to help dig."
Frank looked over. "Who ordered you guys?"
"Dispatch said a Detective Hagen did but we knew that was wrong," that one said with a shrug. "We all guessed it was the guy who did this instead."
"No, not likely," Horatio admitted. "We have to find out if it's one killer or multiple ones."
One pointed at Flack. "Do we need to take a statement?"
Don looked over. "We got here for a totally different reason."
"Damn, sorry, Detective."
"They will be if I ever see one again," Danny promised. They all smiled and let them get the anger and fear out with the shovels. It was a good thing to do if you didn't have a heavy bag.
Horatio found Hagen and tapped him on the shoulder, nodding him to join him outside. John nodded at the chair next to him. "We're safe here, Horatio. The poker circuit shows up here all the time to talk. I told them we'd need privacy."
"How did you know?" he asked quietly.
"I found it earlier. I was tracking a pain in the ass being that I'm pretty sure was human at one point in time."
"Was it someone who was perhaps changed out?"
"No, I saw that one digging and that's why I called it in," he said quietly. "Then the second time when they refused to take it from me because I gave my name. Is everyone all right?"
"The family is," he admitted. "The rest... the rest had a few too many bodies for comfort."
Hagen nodded. "I'm glad they're okay."
Horatio wrote down a number. "If it affects the family, call me, or call Xander." He pushed it over. "He would've been there immediately, John, and he does know."
"The kid's kind of creepy, Horatio."
"Not really. He's actually very good. He's highly protective as well."
"Good to know." He put that into his pocket. "Why does he have the mafia-style assistant?"
"He got brought back as well and he handles things that Xander cannot. We actually like how Wade has rehabilitated himself for the last few months." He stared at him. "Who were you tracking?"
Hagen put down the information he had. "He was mixed up in that whole undercover op that got us both dead, kind of."
Horatio read it over and nodded. "I know of them. I'll talk to them today." He put it into his jacket pocket. "Thank you."
"Not a problem, Horatio. Can we work on things like maybe a new ID card?" he asked quietly.
"I have that system at the lab at the moment." He smiled weakly. "I'll see what I can do, John." He shook his hand and stood up, finding a waitress walking his way with a box. "I did not order."
"Xander said if you showed up you were to eat," she ordered. "Because you can't catch the bad guys when you're passing out from hunger, Lieutenant. Since you wouldn't let him help other ways he has to do it the only way he knows how."
He smiled and took the box. "Thank you."
"We made enough for that cute, zippy thing you have as yours too," she said with a wink, taking John's cup to get him more coffee.
"Thank you, Marie." He left for the lab. Speed was waiting on him. "Xander had them feed me as well as you," he said.
Speed gave him a weak smile. "That's always a nice thing. He sent stuff from the Greek and Spanish bakery to us too."
Horatio nodded. "It's welcome today." They went to the office to sit and eat together. "Do we know anything?"
"Usually we don't talk about the job during lunch," Speed said before taking a bite. "But today, I want to get it out of my head. Alexx said they're all long distance shots."
"Calleigh's projecting. Then she'll talk to Cougar to see how many locally could make that outside of him."
"That's good. Did we check the places we know?"
"Yes. I sent Mac's team out to help us. Stella was nearly crying."
"As I am," Horatio said quietly, eating a bite. He put it aside and went to talk to Alexx and Calleigh.
Speed finished his and put up the leftovers. Horatio could eat it later. This was going to eat them all until they figured it out.
Xander walked into the bar he wanted and sat down in front of someone, staring at them until they glared at him. "Who?"
"Who?" The man gave him a confused look. "Horatio's coming soon. I've heard rumors they're setting up right now. Who is it?" he asked quietly.
"Who is who?" he asked cautiously.
"I know who attacked my family this morning and they're gone. But we found others."
"Oh, shit," he muttered. "He's downtown somewhere."
"Any idea why?"
"We don't know, Harris. If I did, and I was certain it was him, I'd fix it. But there's a few different snipers in town that routinely set up to keep in practice."
Xander nodded. "I heard. Which one?"
Xander nodded. "How sure?"
"Thank you." He touched him on the hand. "There were kids," he said quietly. That one shuddered. "Yeah, so everyone's torn up." He got up and walked off. He called Cougar once he was in the corvette. "Who's set up to keep in practice today?" He listened to the usual count. "Seventeen is much too high. Yeah. The guy who would most know thinks Phil. About eighty percent sure." He drove off once traffic slowed down. "Please. Thank you." He hung up and went to do some checking. Eighty percent was too unsure for whoever had done this. Because if justice didn't work, he could treat this guy like another ghoul.
Horatio heard the news Cougar sent over. "Eighty percent is not good enough but it's a starting place," he agreed. "Where might he be? Yes, I'm aware. Even the SWAT snipers were doing that exercise this week. What sort of spot does he like? Does he have any preferences?" He nodded, listening to him. "Then we'll have to check each one. Thank you, Cougar." He hung up and grabbed his sunglasses and Frank, heading out to check on the spots the snipers were running their practices. Seventeen or so in the city was not a good average. They found the first one and snuck up on him, making him flip over to point a gun at them. "Do not even think about it." Horatio's hands went to his hips.
"Lieutenant. Is there a problem?"
"Yes. One of the snipers in town has killed a great many people," Horatio said.
"Including some kids," Frank added.
"Damn," he said, shaking his head. "Wasn't me, sir."
"I have heard who it might be," Horatio said, staring at him. "I know you work with SWAT as a backup."
"Yes, sir." He stood up. "I can go home for the day, sir. I do not want to get in the middle of that. Whoever did it, deserves the hell he'll get."
"Want me to tell any others?"
"No. Do not say a word so we can weed the rest out." He nodded and packed up, heading for his house to calm down. Horatio scanned for others nearby who might have been watching. He pointed at one, who waved back. Then that guy pointed to his left. He looked. "Frank, I believe that is our possible one," he said. They went back down the building and to that one, heading up to talk to him. He was very drunk. He was holding an actual rifle instead of a scope stand. "Do not move," Horatio ordered. The man moved his hands away from the gun. "Frank." He checked him and nodded he was clear so they had him flip over. "Philip Mangers."
"Lieutenant, is there a problem?"
Horatio stared at him. "We found that burial ground, Philip."
"What burial ground?"
Horatio stared at him. "It was said that you would know about it."
The man shook his head, taking a drink from his flask. "I have no idea what you're talking about."
Horatio stared. "We'll see when we compare the bullets to your rifle."
"I'm not the only one in town," he said dryly.
"Calleigh can test the others if she has to. Let's go." They hauled him up and Frank took the rifle with them. They got him back and sat him in a room without his flask. They wanted to talk to him when he was sober. Clay was waiting when he came out of ballistics. "I cannot let you beat him."
"That's fine. I had Jensen knock out Xander. He was fondling the guns." He stared at him. "He was certain that if you couldn't, he could."
"He probably could," Horatio agreed. "I'm hoping we have the right one."
She came out. "Wrong caliber, Horatio, but he's got seven listed in the right caliber in the licensing system."
"Please go get them for us," Horatio ordered. She nodded and left. He looked at Clay again. "If it was him, I can get him to break."
"I don't think so. We're trained not to."
"He is drunk."
"Shit, he's fallen," Clay muttered. "Want me to stand by?"
"You can but I can't allow you to question him. You can, however, give me hints." He walked them that way and went in to question the guy. Frank came in with notes for him. "Philip, where are your rifles?"
"What? I sold 'em," he said dryly.
"Men such as you don't sell your guns, Philip. They never have. They never will. None of the others in your field would either." Philip lunged and tried to get him but Horatio was ready for that. So was Frank, who slammed him back into his chair. "Why did you kill them?"
"I didn't do all them," he sneered. "Someone had to take the scum you didn't get off the streets. I got a few."
"I see. Who else?"
"I'm not saying a word."
"Hmm. Then you can not say a word in jail. Because you just confessed to killing some of them." Horatio stared at him until the man looked away. He could see the dead soul in his eyes. "How many were yours?"
"I'm not saying another word."
"That's fine. If that's your wish."
"You don't know how hard it is to watch them get out and do it again."
Horatio snorted. "There have been a great many times I wished I could have done something to make sure they got what was needed. Unfortunately I cannot unless I want to switch sides and that is not the man I am."
"The Army trained me into the sort of man that took out dictators and assholes."
"Yes, but even then, they were not ordered targets. They were a job you took on for yourself and your own pleasure."
"It wasn't pleasure!" he shouted. "It was necessary!"
"Perhaps but you also killed innocents. There were children there."
He shook his head. "I don't hit kids, Caine."
"I see. Who might have."
"I'm not talking about anyone."
Cougar walked in and stared at him. "Usted sucio el nombre y el entrenamiento como usted oculta detrás de él tiene gusto de un gamberro de la cuadrilla. (You dirty the name and the training as you hide behind it like a gang thug)."
"You know they can't keep going! They'll destroy others!"
"I know they're not targets. You're shaming the training." The man swallowed. "It will not happen."
"I... I had to! If you had seen what they had done!"
"If you had brought me evidence, such as pictures, I would have handled it," Horatio reminded him. "You were trained to take them as well as the kill shot." He looked at Cougar. "I know you're angry that he's dirtied his uniform, Cougar," he said calmly. "But you cannot be in here either."
"The others, they are not welcome." He stared him down, making the man look away. "You either." He walked off.
Horatio stared at him. "You have shamed a great many who served honorably taking the law into your own hands without orders to do so. We cannot allow that. Frank, stick him in a monitored cell. Put him on suicide watch." He gathered the papers together and tapped them on the table.
"We will talk when you have had time to think about what statement you wish to make." He got up and walked out. Frank escorted the prisoner to booking to make sure they knew he was highly dangerous, highly trained, and to be on suicide watch. Horatio called Jensen to tell him to talk to Xander. Who was probably righteously pissed off, as Horatio was. But they could not take the law into their own hands either.
Cougar stared at the snipers he had gathered. He was certain these ones weren't involved in any of that problem. They hadn't shamed the uniform yet. "That one said it was not just him."
One of them looked around then at him. "Do we think the others were?" Cougar shrugged. "Can they prove who did who?"
"The pretty blonde wants our rifles," another one said. Cougar nodded. "Have you?" he nodded again. "All of them?"
"She asked. Treats them as we would."
"Then we'll make an appointment so we can be there," another one said from the corner. "That way we can answer any questions at the same time. Much as I trust the lab, I don't want anyone handling my rifle without me being there."
Cougar nodded. "She would agree. I was. Xander was with his."
"Then we'll talk to her tomorrow." Cougar put down her card on the low table between a few of the chairs. They all smirked and one called her so they could talk about when to come in. They didn't have anything to hide and it would prove that to her. The ones who had helped.... they might take them out themselves.
Calleigh walked in the next morning, smiling at the receptionist. "I have appointments all day testing guns from sniper trained people."
"I'll let you know, sign them in, and let you come get them, ma'am."
"Thank you." She went to her lab to make sure it was spotless and she had everything she needed. She could put the test fires in the system for later testing against as well. Of course, her system was down and she could only input and compare against the case itself. "Jensen," she complained quietly. She text messaged him, and he said it wasn't him, but might be his sister. He'd have to check. She asked him to please fix it and then went out to escort her first test fire in. "Thank you for being so honest," she said with a smile.
"There's no way I want to be associated with people like that, Miss."
"Call me Calleigh. Xander even dumps his weapons on me when he can't have them." He grinned at her for that. She took his rifles to look over and carefully test fire each, watching him clean them once she was done. He reported that to the others when she was done with him. She was very professional and had only stroked one barrel a little bit. Better than Harris, who petted each and every new gun he got from what he heard. That was a bit too gun nut for most of them.
Calleigh had her report ready and took it to Horatio. Who was, of course, catching ten minutes of rest on his couch. He made an inquisitive noise when she tried to back out. "All but two are accounted for, Horatio."
"Do we have them in custody?"
"Frank is. Those two, I'm not sure who they belong to. They're an odd caliber for a rifle."
"Have we any idea where they came from?"
"Cougar didn't know either."
"Hmm. Ask Wade? He knows more exotic weapons."
"I can do that." She handed over the report and left, going to see if Cougar had figured out what sort of gun that was. Clearly it was foreign. It was something she hadn't seen before. She knocked and was let into his apartment when she got there. "Did we figure it out?"
He shook his head. "Strange caliber for a rifle."
"Want me to ask Wade?"
"He may not know. You need exotic weapons."
"He may know," he admitted. She called them to show up so she could talk to them.
Wade looked at the report. "That is a modified barrel handgun."
"Like my Kalishnakov?" Xander asked. "With the special extended barrel?"
"Higher caliber, but yes." He handed it back. "It's a German made gun. Fairly old. Used in Korea and Vietnam a few times."
Clay walked up to them and looked at the report over her shoulder. "They're collectors items now. The modified barrel helped accuracy but the gun's a piece of crap."
She smiled. "Okay. Where in Miami could we possibly find one?"
"The Heritage Museum had a few I think," Xander said. "I was talking with one of them about authenticating an ancient dueling pistol set someone paid me in. Um, or that gun museum in Hermosa but that's in LA. Run by military guys too."
"Do we know of any in private hands?"
"Not that I've heard of," Xander admitted. "And I usually hear about special babies someone has if they're in the underground."
Wade nodded. "I haven't heard of one either, but the Heritage was robbed last month."
She smiled. "That is very helpful. We'll see if they had any on hand." She smiled at Clay. "Silver, blackened?"
"Barrel's almost always blackened. The only ones I've seen had a wooden grip. It's an automatic. Looks like the old Luger."
"Thank you, boys." She walked off.
"Did we get the rest?" Clay asked.
"Yes. All the other four are under arrest." He smiled. "We do our best work when it's with kids." She left them alone to talk.
Wade looked at Xander. "Dueling pistols?"
"Yeah, but they were going to be your Christmas present."
"Aww, thank you!" He clapped him on the back. "That's pretty cool." He grinned at Clay. "What's he getting?"
"If I tell them all, it won't be a surprise." He looked at Clay. "There's one set I did not mention and I don't think it was used, and I doubt she'd ever get in to see him."
"Harbers," he said. Xander nodded. "I'll talk to the old shithead myself. He's almost always at the training camp. Maybe he'll let her test them for reference." He left to drive to the training center. Pooch was there. "Harbers." He lifted his head from the scope he was tinkering with. "Dusquene said that the last one she needs to look at is that German piece of crap with the new barrel."
"There's six in town beyond mine. I heard about the present case and I wasn't involved."
"Heritage Museum and who?"
"Heritage has four sets. The other two are in vaults from what I heard. Hand-me-downs that the kids don't appreciate."
"Can you talk to her?"
"She's a pretty lady, my mind might wander a bit."
"She's tough enough to smack you back on track," Clay said dryly. "She swatted me a few times when I watched her bounce over Xander's weapons."
"Got her number? It's probably safer if she doesn't have to swat me." Clay held up his phone once he had it up for him. He dialed it and walked off talking to her about the various ones in town that he knew of. Clay left, going back to the apartment to do his daily check on his troublesome group to be fetched like some big stick.
Xander looked over a few things, looking over as the door to the warehouse opened. "Hey, Horatio."
"Xander." He walked over, staring at him. "You're back in warrior mode?" he asked quietly.
"I don't think I dropped since I came back," he sighed. "Especially since they nicely called in a tip about this."
"Hmm. I heard and talked to the officer she connected with. Mr. Wolfe did promise to sacrifice her to Ares' name if she ever came near you again and it wasn't an apocalypse." He reached over and touched his shoulder. "Go back to GHS Xander, not Warrior Xander. We need you to anchor us."
Xander nodded. "I'm trying."
"I know. I've been there myself more than a few times." He pulled him closer to hug, letting the boy finally relax. "It will be fine."
"If you're certain."
"I am. It will be fine." Xander nodded, cuddling him. Horatio snuggled back. They both needed to drop out of warrior mode.
Someone else opened the door. "Aww, what do we have here? Two fags in the warehouse we're going to claim, boys."
Xander looked over at them. "Get the fuck away from my weapons before I kill you."
"Who the hell are you to say anything."
Xander shot them all with tranq darts. "The one who just fucked up your life." He looked at the one who was still outside and therefore out of range. "Yes, I'm that Xander." He smirked evilly. "And you're now fucking morons and jail sex toys. How cute for you." Horatio laughed, going to chase that one down. "You run, Horatio's spouse will kill you." He looked at the others. "I wonder who sent you." He pulled the dart on one, staring down at him. "You're still paralyzed for the next sixteen hours. You can tell me who sent you at my weapons or I can fucking mess up your life further until you beg to tell me. Your choice."
"You don't have nothing on us," he sneered.
"Little boy, I'm dating a detective. Do you think he's going to like you getting into the weapons he lets me have?" The man groaned. "Yes, I'm *that* Xander and you done fucked up. So... who sent you at my weapons?"
"There's a call to hit you," he said. "They said you wouldn't need it. That you'd be gone and we could have them to put back into the market."
"Uh-huh. Hasn't worked yet, dear." Horatio came back without that guy. "Didn't get him?"
"Patrol has him."
Xander smiled. "He's getting you next. You can go to jail just like this. All night in a cell, being unable to move..... Or you can nicely tell Horatio everything and he can put you guys in your own cell so you're only with your boys. That way you can bitch at each other about being the new wives on the block."
"Don Cheva, man! I swear," he begged. "He said you were evil."
"Hmm. Well, we'll talk to him later." He smiled. "Who else was on the contract?"
"Your gay little union," he spat. "Making men less manly."
Xander snickered. "Seriously? Because this gay man can destroy a whole lot of people for shits and giggles. Just by opening a doorway at home." He walked over him. "Let me talk to him."
"Let *me* talk to him," Horatio corrected. "You warn Wade and the team."
Xander texted them. "Anya would be devastated if she got hurt by him."
"Hmm, yes, she would be." He had the officers help him carry them out to put them into the back of a transport van. "The tranquilizer will wear off soon, the paralytic aspect will take about sixteen hours," he said. "Since one of them nicely told us what we wanted to know, they can go into the same holding cell. I'll have Detective Tripp meet you there."
"Yes, Lieutenant." He closed the door and walked around to get in and drive. He knew an order when he got one. Which is why cruisers had to stop him a few blocks off course. "Damn GPS the city put in," he muttered. He pulled out his gun and shot himself. It was all he had left to do.
Horatio smiled at the man who came outside to talk to him. "I know it is dinner time, Don Cheva, but we must talk. People are blaming you for things that we're not sure you're doing."
"What is being put in my name?"
Horatio looked down then up at him. "A contract on Xander's family's life." The Don shook his head quickly. "The gang we caught breaking into the weapons warehouse attributed it to you."
"No, I would not. I remember what happened when the General went against Xander. I would not wish my family to see such things. Because I'm quite sure Wade is worse than Jorge ever was."
"True, he can be," Horatio said, smiling some. "Who would have done this in your name?"
"I do not know. Give me a few hours and I will tell you."
"Please do. We do not want to arrest anyone unfairly, nor do we want this to turn into a blood bath. Xander is already in warrior mode from the last fight he got into in Sunnydale. He hasn't relaxed yet."
"I understand that danger and I will find out tonight."
"Thank you." He handed over his card. "My spouse and I are taking dinner then we'll be back at the lab in a few hours."
"Have a good dinner. All spouses need pampering sometimes." He took the card and went back inside to start calling people. He was not going to be happy when he heard who it was. Horatio could come get them so he didn't beat his wife and second son to death for it. After he yelled about why you did not fuck with Xander. Ever.
Xander walked up to Don Cheva the next morning, handing him a pastry. "I made them myself."
"Thank you, Xander. I had nothing to do with it."
"I heard. Horatio told me so I couldn't be too vindictive. He had a good network going among some of the younger punks." He smiled. "If he was brighter, he could've brought a lot of groups together under his fist."
"I wish he had been smarter. He was the one I was thinking about turning things over to." He nibbled on the pastry. Xander would never poison him. "That's nice. You have a good hand."
Xander grinned. "I try really hard. It's pre-made dough but I made the filling and the drizzle." He smiled. "I like to cook. Oh, and I warned Anya off you. One of them did manage to set fire to Wade's house and got her closet and sex toys. She's going to rip someone's head off about it."
"I've heard her talking about them in the past and wondered how Wade kept up." He ate another bite.
"I used to date Anya back in Sunnydale. I had no idea Wade had taken her in." He shrugged. "They're a good match though." He smiled. "Everyone is very nervous. Even Fu is nervous."
"I will calm them down. As you will?"
"I've already pointed out Horatio took care of it for me." He smirked. "Don's a bit pissed off that they tried it at all but when they said it was because we were gay, he kissed Danny in front of them and told them to get out of their closets." He shrugged and strolled off. "Happy breakfast."
"You as well, Xander." He went inside to call around and diffuse some of the worry. It was not good for Miami and everyone wanted Miami to be calm. No one wanted Xander in warrior mode ever again. He became the scary gay man when he was in warrior mode and that was not good for anyone. Maybe he would suggest to Wade that both the 'wives' could calm down with some pampering treatments.
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