Did You Miss Me?
Xander walked into a poker game. He had spent all morning fussing over the horses so they were happier. Now he was back. Everyone stared. He checked. "I'm fully dressed, guys. What's wrong?"
"There's been some missing people since you got taken," Fu told him with a smirk.
"I didn't do it from Central America or LA."
"Even the ones that went up in a burst of flames?" he asked.
"If they were connected with the thing in DC, that I didn't know." That got a nod and they all relaxed. "Anyway, I'm back, my people." They made room for him. "And of course I'm not actually backed up today." The dealer moaned. "Other than that, how's Anya doing?"
"She's better," the dealer said, dealing him in once he had chipped him up. "She's not got any morning sickness at all. Wade's a bit freaked out but staying calm."
"Hmm. I'll talk to them later tonight. Before I go lay down some law with my boys." That got a nod.
"They found your boys had been drugged by someone in the station to make them more het," one of them said casually.
"Then maybe I'll have kinky sex again tonight." They all moaned when he grinned. "I was so good, Jensen and I even sorted out all my sextoys." That got another moan. Xander accepted his cards, looking them over. He looked at the dealer. "Are you mad at me for some reason?"
"No, Harris, and I even paid you recently," he said with a grin.
"Thanks." He got back into the game once the others had relaxed again. At least until Horatio walked in. Xander stood up to hug him. "I'm back."
"I can tell. You haven't lost weight."
"No, I was a good boy most of the time, Horatio."
"Excellent. Come have lunch with us?" Xander checked his hand and they finished quickly, letting him go. Xander checked his bag stash, pulling out one so they could afford lunch. Then he and Horatio left together. Horatio got them back to the station with the money and food. Xander nearly got the box snatched from him and Frank hugged him when it was taken. Horatio smiled. "We've all missed you."
"I missed you guys too. You probably would've told me to calm down a lot in LA, Horatio."
"Probably but it was helpful." He walked him into the breakroom. They had their own lunch waiting. Danny stood up and hugged him, nearly clinging to him. "Yes, he's back."
Xander pulled back to look at him. "Drugs?"
"Not by my choice." He hugged him again. "When were you going to tell us?"
"I was going to be waiting at home in a kinky outfit." He grinned. Danny moaned, shaking his head. Don walked in and stole Xander to hug. "Hi to you too."
Don gave him a squeeze. "I missed you and I'm sorry the drugs made me an asshole," he whispered. "You're right, we should've done better while you were gone." He looked at him then kissed him. "Are you fully home?" Xander smiled and nodded. "Good. We missed you." He hugged him again.
"Aww, mushy," Eric teased. Xander kicked him on the leg. "Hey!" he said, snickering at the look Calleigh gave him. "We can pick on them."
"We can but it's sweet!" She pulled on Xander's shirt. "Sit down. That way we can eat." They sat down with Xander between them. They talked about LA and how many of those idiots were left free. Which was none because Xander was mean. Horatio and Speed both shivered at that admission but that was fine he guessed.
Pooch walked in first and headed right to check on his wife. "We're back." She slung something at his head. "We were very safe. Xander went highly overprotective of us." He kissed her, making her moan. His son fussed so he smiled at him. "I missed you too, Junior." The baby waved at the man walking past the door. "That's Uncle Jensen, yup." Junior toddled off to hug his uncles while his daddy made Mommy groan like the kitty up the hall did.
Clay smirked, hugging the kid. "Go back to daddy." He turned him around and gave him a nudge. "Go see Daddy, Junior."
"You went where!" Jolene shouted. Junior went to hide with Uncle Cougar, making Clay snicker. "The baby's hiding because you're loud," he called. He opened his door and walked in. Aisha nearly brained him. "What?"
"You couldn't call?"
"You're still saying we're not dating." He glared at her. "I don't need this today. I can go be spoiled horribly by Xander for days on end."
She huffed, heading into the bedroom and kicking the door shut. "Maybe you should since you probably got all the gay sex you could want from him."
"I didn't touch the kid. Besides, if I wanted gay sex, Miami is a mecca and I could easily go find one." He went to Cougar's too.
Jolene huffed as she stomped in. "Off *world*?" she demanded.
"Xander needed to get a thing from the temple and it gave us time to defrag and make plans," Jensen told her. "It also gave us time to get him off his anger kick before he destroyed a good portion of the CIA for that." She glared at him. "Xander was very overprotective of us, Jolene. We didn't get into any trouble. The closest we got was a lite beer like drink in a bar waiting on our ride and some food supplies." She slumped into a chair. The baby came over to pat her belly, staring worriedly at her. "I'm sure your little sister in there is just fine, Junior. I promise she is."
"Who helped Xander?" she demanded. Jensen raised his hand. She gaped. "You?"
"Yeah. Don said it was for the best." He smirked. "He had to emote a bit when we got there but it was all good."
"So you're on their play list?" she said dryly.
"For trips. Otherwise, possibly. Not real sure. I didn't ask Xander." She scowled again. "If so, I'll be told. I'm sure they will."
"Pooch was a good boy and didn't get into any trouble," Clay assured her. "That week-long trip only took them overnight in our time."
"Fine," she muttered. "It still sucks."
"I can ask if he'd take you once the baby's born," Jensen offered with a grin. "He needs someone to shop with him sometimes."
"We'll see." She stood up, holding her stomach. The baby was patting it again, still giving her worried looks. "She's fine," she promised, picking him up to cuddle him. "Quit worrying so much. You're worse than your father is." She walked off. "I think it's a son," she called back.
"That means they can share a room," Clay quipped dryly. He looked at Jensen. "If so, don't take advantage of it too often. It's cheesy," he said quietly.
"We'll see how the lack of drugging does his boys first. Remember, he used to have Greg."
"Point." He looked at Cougar. "How was off-world?"
"We were on a ship." He shrugged. "It was different."
"The animals were pretty nice," Jensen said with a grin for him. "They were very well trained. They were good to sleep on." Cougar nodded that was true. "They looked a bit strange, like a cross between a camel, an elephant, and a giraffe."
Clay shook his head quickly. "So nothing strange?"
"No. Nothing too strange. We learned about a world where Xander should've been born. They have a Goddess of Good Hair and Pleasure. They don't wear a lot of clothes." Clay smirked at that, rolling his eyes. "Usually they wear little things like feathers and little clothes."
"I wonder if they have society members," Clay said dryly.
"No clue. He never mentioned it." Jensen smirked and shrugged. "So, boss, what's on for tonight?"
"The relief team did a good job. Everyone's here by the report I had waiting in my email this morning. They headed back to New York. It was mostly a vacation for them." That got a nod from the duo. "Xander's probably cooking."
"I promised we'd help Xander with some slightly kinky surprises soon," Jensen said.
"That's fine. At least you took time to spar most of the trip." They both nodded. They had spent a lot of time sparring with Xander. "For tonight, rest, eat, we'll meet in the morning to see if there's anything we need to do." He went back to his own apartment now that Jolene wasn't huffy and shouting. In fact, she was moaning prettily and he smirked. The baby was staring at the stairs.
"No way," he ordered, taking him into his apartment. Aisha huffed but oh well. The baby cooed at her and went to pet his couch. For some reason Junior loved the thing he had found at a thrift shop. Which was weird but so was the whole group. Clay sat down and Junior gave him a long stare. "You father does that whenever I have a beer and don't give him one," he said dryly.
He patted his lap. Junior wiggled his way up, grinning at him and looking around. "You probably want read to, don't you?" He leaned over to take Aisha's 'Shape' magazine and read to him about exercise stuff. Never too young to get the little guy thinking about building muscle mass. The baby was beaming at him for being able to read and it was a happy thing to come home to.
"Why are we babysitting?" she asked. He pointed at the wall that echoed the groaning. She huffed. "He can go play in his room."
Clay looked at her. "I am his godfather." He went back to reading. "They'll be done soon. Pooch hasn't been keeping up his stamina work." He turned the page. "That's nasty girl stuff you won't need," he told the baby, turning it again.
"Tampons?" she joked.
"Bra." He went back to reading about the newest aerobic craze. The baby clapped when Mommy quit groaning like the kitty cat up the hall. Clay shook his head. "Give them ten minutes to cuddle then they'll come get you, Junior." He went back to reading.
"This is awfully domestic," she complained. He pointed at the doorway, still reading. She huffed and stomped off. He smirked at the baby and winked. She'd be back later. Probably. If not, he'd find someone less crazy but just as volatile.
Buffy looked at Willow, who was sick again. "Willow," she said casually. "Aren't you on the pill?"
"Why would I be?" she asked between heaves. "I've been with a woman for the last sixteen months."
Buffy winced. "Then I think I know what this is." She called Giles to come pick them up. They might need a magical intervention when Willow started to wail in misery. Giles was there fairly quickly and they gathered Willow up to take her to the local clinic. Giles was stern and lecturing her about responsibility and how could she be so stupid.
Buffy waved when he glared at her. "I'm on the pill. I've been on the pill since I was fourteen for my zits. I take them *every* day." Willow pouted. Yup, she was, and she got an expensive ticket to England to settle in with some older witches in a powerful coven that could handle her mood swings. Before she destroyed the earth or something. "Do I have to tell him?"
"It's her job really," Giles complained.
She sighed. "Maybe." She got a ride to LA on the greyhound and went to find Roque. He was still in town taunting Angel about being a woose with no dick. Which yeah, comparing them, he was. She found him at lunch and sat down with a sigh. He stared at her, fork halfway to his mouth. "Willow's on her way to England to a powerful coven who can control her mood swings."
She nodded. "She forgot things being with Tara."
Roque shuddered. "Tell me you're not talking about what I think you are?"
"I have no idea about any plans other than that. Giles wanted her confined in case she lashed out and killed, intentionally or not, during a mood swing." He shuddered. She smiled. "I, however, have been smart enough to take my daily pill every day since I was fourteen."
"Thank God for small miracles," he sighed. "I have to talk to her."
"I think Giles evacuated her already because he was a bit worried you'd stab her or something. He told her that too during his rant about being irresponsible."
"Yeah, she was a bit," he said dryly.
She smirked. "So can I write her a letter bragging about all that she's missing?"
"Maybe," he decided, digging in again.
She considered it. "I heard from Anya. She's knocked up too." Roque choked, shaking his head as he gulped his coffee to clear his airway. "They're not sure what they're doing but she's thinking about letting Xander or someone adopt it. They'd be way too hard on a baby and it might turn out funny." He nodded, still trying hard not to choke. She smirked. "Need the brain bleach too? It took all those toys and Willow four hours to take that out of my head when I heard." He nodded. She handed him the check so he paid it and they walked off together so he could drown that thought out.
Jensen heard from a contact that had contacts in LA and Sunnydale, reading that information. He sent Roque a nice present that had the note 'commandos always use condoms so they don't leave babies in foreign pussies' and left it there. He forwarded it to Clay so Clay would taunt him later. "I wonder if Anya and Wade would let Xander adopt their future torturer."
He went back to surfing things on legal adoptions for them. They'd have to file the paperwork somewhere other than Miami due to Florida not allowing gay parents to adopt, but that was fine. They had holdings in New York and California. They could fudge that some. He finished making his notes and went to surf other sites. He hated having to hack porn servers to get the good stuff free but oh well. Plus, hey, no viruses from them. It was the safer sex.
Xander looked around the house. It was actually clean, dusted, and the cages had been hosed down for cobwebs, which he had been meaning to do. He grinned, going to the kitchen. It was a wreck, they needed groceries badly. He called to check his balances then Steve to let him know the crisis was over. Still locked so he talked to Jensen, who got them unlocked pretty easily. The agent who had been locking them was actually on their side and had forgotten or something.
Xander ordered groceries and checked the dishwasher. It was free. He went to unpack everything, putting them all away in the new drawers. And the old drawer got the bigger things. He looked up, deciding to put in the new hooks too. That way he had them done for the day when he wanted his plan to go off. He was putting one up when Hagen walked in. "Hey, John."
Xander looked at him. "Try Xander?" he suggested with a grin.
"Xander then." He stared at him. "You have some really strange contacts."
"Yeah, the poker buddies." He finished screwing in the hooks and got off the bed, looking at him. "What did you need one for?"
"This whole newly back thing is kind of....weird and awkward."
Xander nodded. "It can be, yeah. But.... we can set you up with a new life if you want. Horatio and I can do that. We have for people that needed to escape a violent ex."
"We've already started on that but I don't know much about many things outside of police work."
"So that might leave private security," Xander said, considering it. "I don't know anyone who is hiring right now but I can ask around. Anyone who knows me knows I'd be asking about something strange so you wouldn't have to explain. I can ask Wade and the boys to ask their friends too." Hagen relaxed and smiled. "Let me ask." He nodded. "Now, did the dragon let you in?"
"The lizard thing? Yeah."
"That's Hubert the baby dragon. Let me call Wade. He might know of someone." He conferenced in Wade and Dean. "Guys, got a small favor. John Hagen is here asking about anyone we might know who could hire him."
Wade coughed. "Ask Philip since he never comes out of the house and they're going to be upgrading his hormones soon due to the tumor they found in his brain, kid."
"I didn't know that."
"Yeah. The thing is doing shitty things to his body chemistry. The treatment is even worse though. He's gone full blown like you do a few times and can't get out of the house."
"I can talk to Philip. I'm not sure if could handle having someone there all the time though. But I'll ask. Any other options if that doesn't pan out?"
"Solidara, the training center, might have some," Dean said. "I know Sammy and I have been going there to get back in better shape. Clay took us and dropped us off."
"He's so like Dad sometimes," Sam agreed, cracking Wade up.
"I can ask there," Xander said, grinning at the phone. "Sparring this weekend with me since Ryan's on, guys."
"We know," Dean promised, sounding tolerant. "We ran Danny and Don through their paces too. Don, Eric, and Danny all got in a lot of practicing while you were gone."
"Cougar and Jensen got some daily too," Xander agreed with a smile. "Plus some dancing time to help them. Dean, I was going to suggest that to you so you're a bit more relaxed when you move."
"We heard, dude, and I'm not that sort of boy," Dean said dryly. "I'm working on it with soccer at the moment."
"Fine, but if you're that stiff I still might make you learn. Even a few lessons might help. It did them."
"Uh-huh. I club dance, not salsa dance, Xander. If I have to I might but still strange."
"Women like it," Sam teased. "Especially around here."
"A lot of women like it," Xander agreed. "Even I was dancing with women."
"We so heard about the contest in DC," Sam teased.
Xander snickered. "It was fun."
Wade shuddered. "Don't give us ideas. Anya can't right now. Please?"
"Supposedly women in their second trimester get really horny," Dean taunted, sounding like he was smirking. "You might need a sub, Wade."
"You mean she's going to get worse?" Wade demanded. "Anya, you're going to get more horny?" he called.
"Yes, Wade. From my fifth to my seventh month probably. It'll make up for my last month when I'm fat and can't move without farting I'm told."
"Sure," he sighed, then moaned.
"I can take you to the special GHS store that sells toys," Xander offered.
"I might take you up on that," Wade admitted. "That way I can still sleep." He hung up.
"Poor man, stuck with a nympho who enjoys his kink," Dean taunted then laughed.
"Remember, she's part of the reason I have such great stamina too," Xander offered. "Thanks, guys." He hung up and looked at John. "I can email Philip."
"I can act as a part-time bodyguard for him," he said. "Horatio told me about the group in case I ran into someone making plans. He said he never comes out of the house."
"Yup. Actually, let me get some stuff together and I can introduce you." He looked at himself. "Let me change too." He went to his closet. John wisely fled when he started to strip. Xander shrugged it off. He knew some people were funny about those things. Then he gathered a basket and took John with him. Philip answered the door by peeking around it. "Hey." He held up the basket. "I brought stuff."
He let them in, staring at John. "He's one of us?"
"He's one of Horatio's former coworkers that's taking private security contracts. Wade thought you might like introduced in case you needed it."
Philip smiled. "My ex boyfriend got arrested by Speed for being a dick."
"I heard. It's always better unless you can shoot 'em legitimately and get away with it." Philip beamed and nodded.
Xander hugged him. "Wade told me, Philip. Are you all right? Need to talk?"
"I'm okay. How do you stand surging that way?" he asked, sitting them down. Xander handed over the stuff, earning a grin. "Thanks."
"You know I'll fuss if you let me. Beyond that, surging happens. Even before you surged. Now it's just more noticeable." He shrugged. "You learn how to cope and try to wear it out."
"I am. Yoga has been helping me some. I can stay calmer."
Xander wrote down an address. "That is a slightly expensive GHS catering store that sells all sorts of toys and other stuff." He looked at him. "Bring your card and they'll let you in without question. They also have kinkier stuff but they do cater to us." Philip grinned. "And if you have problems, you let me know and I'll come thump their asses for you.
"It's bad enough I had to get into with some guards in DC when someone at the embassy tried to take me again. They did not like it when I went Springer on their ass. Nor did they like the fact that I pointed out I was the victim of the kidnaping, not the genial rent boy they thought I was. That was a loud discussion at the top of my lungs. I was still wearing cuffs too. They didn't like that in the least but they need to do some redecorating."
Philip gaped. "You hurt them?"
"Yeah. They took me, they deserved it."
Philip swallowed. "I don't think I can do that."
"That's why we have a great retrieval team who likes to kick people like that until they beg," John said with a grin. Philip grinned back at that. "Some of you guys don't know self defense. I'm sure they know that. Especially where you're sick right now."
"It's shrinking. They think I'll go back down soon," he told them.
Xander grinned. "It's uncomfortable when your body betrays you but you'll be fine soon. I'm certain of it," he promised. Philip beamed and nodded. "And if you need special stuff for being sick from the medicine, let me know. I know some really great places and I make a mean chicken soup. I included some of that lemon custardy stuff in case your stomach is touchy. It's frozen right now."
Philip looked in the basket, beaming at him. "I love the fruit from your trees. You don't use pesticides or things." He went to put them up and came back. "Thank you, Xander."
"Hey, we're a support group," Xander reminded him. "I can pop over being all supporty all you need. Hugs and all." Philip beamed at him. "Need anything today? I can take you shopping and stuff if you need me to."
"I'm good for right now. That grocery store is nice. They don't even mind when I ask for them to find the cheapest meat, including the last day sale stuff."
"Yeah, they're pretty practical but they find the good produce for us." He grinned. "Plus it's really handy when I'm backed up and grounded to the house." Philip cackled, nodding. "Anyway, let me know what you need. If I can, I'll be there. If not, I'll talk to someone I trust. Like Horatio or John here or even Dean and Sam."
"I will, Xander. Thank you." He gave him a hug. "You're really nice."
"I am as long as you're nice to me." He winked. Philip grinned, letting them out. He grinned at John. "He's a really nice guy. Very sweet and we all wanted to beat the shit out of his boyfriend for him before they broke up."
"It seems like he is. I know Horatio said a lot of you guys don't come out of the house."
"No, we don't. It's a bit dangerous." He took him to the car, driving them to the practice center Soldiara. Xander got out and nodded, letting John follow him. "Ah, Stupidhead." The man glared at him. "Next time don't ask me dumb questions. Your boss in?"
"In the office, Harris. You finally back from playing commando games?"
Xander looked over the edge of his sunglasses at him. "They took my cute ass to Honduras with Cougar and Jensen. Did they expect me not to fall back to Sunnydale Xander?" The man gaped in horror. Xander smirked. "Yeah. It was a pretty decent trip though. I got to play with explosives, with weapons I shouldn't have, got to talk to some geeks, got to bust a huge ass people and child trafficking ring.
"Destroyed something like three hundred people overall. Got Roque laid by my former friends so he could fuck the evil out of them." He shrugged then grinned. The guy moaned, walking off shaking his head. Xander grinned at John. "He asked me once if I slept my way through the people I killed in Sunnydale."
"A lot of them?" Hagen asked. He thought the kid was really nice.
"Patrol and hunting."
Hagen gaped. "Like Dean and Sam?"
"No, we had a lot more vampires and lesser demons. They do more spirits and higher, possessing demons." He smirked. "We had nightly patrols; they handle things every few weeks. We also had yearly apocalypses."
"Which is why we like you in fluffy husband mode," the Captain said as he joined them. "You're less scary."
Xander shrugged. "We all know I learned a lot of what I know from D&D and being possessed by a soldier once, Captain. This is John Hagen."
"I heard from Horatio." He shook his hand. "You need to restart training."
"I could use it, yeah," he admitted. "I was also hoping you might have heard of open spots?"
"Know a few." He smirked. "We can work all that out." He looked at Xander. "You all back?" Xander nodded. "Huh, haven't seen any of the team."
"They're home. Pooch is probably being all daddy over the baby. Jensen's at home because I had to get him to redact something on one of my accounts that someone forgot."
"There's some who want to investigate you now," the Captain said smugly. "You showed too much ass crack."
Xander smirked back. "If they hadn't fucked with me, they wouldn't know. The head of the DEA and the FBI both know that. So does the head of the ATF. Faust is probably pissed because he's being eaten at right now. Which is probably what's going on." He called Jensen. "Is that agent whoever who's looking into me because of Faust?"
He listened. "Yup, that's what the Captain said. No, here. He wanted to make sure you're all okay since no one's shown up yet." He listened. "Thanks, man." He hung up. "No, it's Faust." He smirked evilly. "Pity." He patted Hagen on the back. "Want me to leave him in your capable hands while Horatio and I craft him a new identity?"
"That'll work. That way I know where his skills lay and what sort of retraining he needs."
"He was a detective."
"Doesn't mean squat, kid. We all know that," the Captain said dryly. "Though I think it's nice you're in better shape than some of the boys retired down here." Xander gave him a smug look. "You coming back soon?"
"They want me back in fluffy husband mode too. But yeah. Weekly like before." He smirked. "John, your car?"
"At home. I figured we'd go wherever. Horatio suggested it."
"Horatio does know me very well." He blew a kiss. "Have fun playing commando games. Oh! Those bubbles in Central America." He summoned that book and showed it to him. They had marked on the maps. "The ones we went into."
The Captain looked. "That sucks wide. Who did that?"
"Way ancient sorts. Anyone with skills would get hit by them. This one was a four month trek across somewhere that the guys said was hotter and meaner than the Sahara." He pointed at one.
"I'll give the book back in a few days." Xander nodded and left it with him. He looked at Hagen. "The stupid wannabes took him and two of his students to make them prove themselves. He ended up destroying a good bit of plans." He took him into the back area. "Guys, this is Hagen. Something Winchester happened and brought him back to life."
The ones back there nodded. "He's working on his conditioning and all that again. Help him." He gave John a nudge and John took off his jacket, leaving him in a t-shirt and jeans. They put him through the ringer but he was all right, for now. He could definitely be better. Clay came in and helped too. He needed to stay in shape to keep away from Aisha's claws. He called Jensen down to talk about those bubbles. They were weird and almost no one ran into them but others should know just in case.
Wade decided he needed a helpful, friendly ear who could swat the hell out of him so he took a trip back to Canada for a few days. His old CO was still alive. He could kick Wade's ass over things and had for years. Including letting his instincts go south while with Max. He showed up at his room in the Old Soldier's Home, staring at him until he woke up.
The old man stared at him. "You look like your new boss is just as insane as your old one, boy."
"No, Xander's really nice. Doesn't want me to kill anyone, nothing like that. He's a bit of a worrier but otherwise he's good." He sat down. "He's almost goody good but he's a white knight."
"Better then. So why did you visit? You never come see me unless you're thinking too hard. I don't see brain smoke though."
He snorted. "I picked up a girl for a year in return for paying off her debts."
"Easy way of getting a girlfriend for a guy like you. So?"
"So.... I actually started to feel shit for her."
The old man laughed, wheezing. "Sounds like you met your match, boy."
"I think I have. Though, we had an incident."
"She stuffed up?" he said with a huge grin. Wade nodded. "You think you can handle that?"
"I'm fighting the urge to beat the shit out of her for being on an antibiotic that weakened her pill. I know it's not her fault the thing bit her but still."
"Hmm. These things change a man."
"I'm not ready for that change."
"So talk to her about not having it."
Wade looked at him. "Can't." His old CO grimaced. "She's not happy but it's the only chance she'll get to pass on those things. We're thinking about letting the baby be adopted by some friends though. That way our mutual interests don't end up killing the kid in the middle of the night for interrupting sex."
"Yeah, you definitely met your match."
Wade nodded, shifting to cross his feet. "I'm starting to realize how screwed up I am in relation to her. She's actually almost worse than I am because of her former job."
"What did she do?"
"She was a vengeance demon. Used to torture guys who dumped their women or screwed around on them. She has stories that even I thought were excessive."
The guy stared at him. "They're real?" Wade nodded. "You're sure?"
"Yeah, and the new boss used to be a hunter. She's actually his ex. We found that out later." He shifted again. "I'm starting to... feel things though."
"Be honest, Wade, you're feeling period. That's an odd thing and it's worrying you that you're losing your edge." He stared him down. "It could mean that you have a better reason to fight now that you're not in the same war."
"No, not hardly. The new one's an evil genius in a whole *other* spectrum," he said dryly. "Drives me nuts sometimes with the stuff he does. And he likes weapons, a lot."
"No, I mean he's hoarding artillery in an apocalypse warehouse sort of way."
The old man snickered. "You know Harris?"
"How do you know Xander?"
"I heard from a few birdies about the recent things."
"Yeah, I'm being his minion. He treats me really nicely. Let me steal from Max's accounts to set myself up sweetly and all that. I don't have to handle much for him other than watching his back because he does insane shit."
"Good. Sounds like it's easier on you. You're becoming the higher end of exceptionally normal again." He stared him down. "You were burned out the last time I saw you." Wade nodded. "She change that?"
"She's the one then, boy. Get to marrying."
"That.... I'm nowhere near ready for that. I can't even call her a real girlfriend."
"Uh-huh. Those emotion things are strange but you'll get there." He stared at him. "It's good for you to get out of your old rut. Makes you grow and learn to adapt better. Makes you a stronger soldier too."
Wade considered it. "It's still creepy."
"It will be until you figure things out again. She's unsettling you some but you can handle it. Though I did hear that if you hurt her, that boy'll destroy you too."
"Yeah, he will." He smirked. "He's mean when he has to be and he's got some very wicked ideas." He stared at him. "So you think it's just that feeling crap starting?"
"Probably. I doubt you'll ever be the mushy husband sort. I can't see you being the one to push the stroller and all that. Adopting is a good thing by the way."
"She was hoping Xander would adopt it."
"He might. Boy's supposed to be a bit mushy." He stared at him. "You'll handle it. You're a man who knows himself, Wade. Even if things start to be uncovered from the years of war. We all thought Max was a bad idea for you because he pushed you farther into that end instead of dealing with the combat trauma."
"I'm not seeing a shrink."
"So don't." He shrugged. "You could probably be one's wet dream if you wanted to be." He stared at him. "Adopt the baby out. That way you don't have to worry about your own responses. Each time those emotional things twinge, accept it as part of your past coming back and let it happen as it does. Not many men can say they met their life's match during their darker days. You're in a well and climbing but it's still dark," he said when Wade opened his mouth. "That boy of yours will help you if you ask. He's the sort to do that. All knights are."
Wade nodded. "Thanks, old man."
"Welcome, Wade. Also, get your ass back in shape, boy. You're flabby and it's probably not going to make her happy. She might turn those skills on you to get you back into your better shape."
Wade shivered. "I'm not sure if I would put up with that or not." He saluted and left, going to the bar to think. It was sound advice. He still was feeling creeped out by the emotional things. Maybe he would ask Xander to adopt the baby, or Horatio. He could counter the dangerous things the thing would clearly inherit from their parents.
Danny looked at Xander. He had heard Anya's idea earlier and he was going to upset Xander horribly. "No, we can't," he said quietly. Xander stared at him. "Think about how much it hurt you to lose the dogs, Xander. Someday we'll have to watch the kid die too."
Xander shook his head. "We'd have grandkids. And if it's at the normal time or due to old age or being sick, I could handle that."
"I'm not sure I can," Don sighed, sitting up to look at them. "As much as I appreciate the hell out of Anya now that I know her better, I think we'd have problems. Especially in this state."
"I have holdings in other places," Xander pointed out. "The house in New York was only rented because it never would sell."
Danny groaned. "Since when?"
"Since always?" He shrugged. "The people renting it are a white coven head." He looked at them. "Do we want to see what might happen when they teach the kid to torture demons?"
"No," Don agreed. "Which is a thought I like, and I'm all for helping them find a good adoptive couple, but if we do it, we'll still outlive the kids. Which sucks. Every parent that does that has horrible trauma for years."
Xander looked at him. "I never expected to have kids anyway, Don. I expected to die in a battle." They both shuddered. "And you know what, it might be the one thing that might help me settle down. Might give me someone to fuss over, teach, all that, which the students are only temporary help for." He got up and walked off.
Danny and Don shared a look. "I get his point," Don agreed. "It still might suck. Even though we could die tomorrow."
"Xander," Danny called. He came back from the kitchen with a drink. "You know babies take a lot of work, right? They'd interrupt sex, you'd have to play poker less. Jolene doesn't even let you babysit all that long because you're too bouncy half the time." He stared at him. "It'll change things."
"Then maybe it'll make us appreciate what we have better. Because even I take things for granted." He sipped his lemonade. "You two are great and all but she's my pack."
Danny winced. "I was hoping you weren't going to say that. What if she's not the one you were getting morning sickness from?"
"Who else would it be? Unless you know something about Ray, Calleigh, or Speed I don't?"
"No," Danny admitted. "There's still some practical things to consider. Including that it's not legal for a gay couple to adopt in this state."
"We can file in another state. It's not that hard."
"We'd have to prove residency," Don noted.
"Which is why I own an apartment in LA and New York?"
"Point," he sighed. "It's still a huge change. You'd have to be there all the time. All the diaper changing, all the feedings, all that. All the crying all night. We'd help but we still work and all that."
Xander shrugged. "As opposed to me sitting around here doing jack shit all day?"
"That's another good point."
Xander stared at them. "Shouldn't I be able to pass on what I know somehow?"
"Yeah, but you have students," Danny said.
"Dean and Sam are both wanting to move out so they quit supposedly cramping our style," Xander told him. "Cougar and Jensen are coming along really well but within a year they're going to be as fully trained as I can make them and be back at the level of friendship."
"What about hiring a nanny to adopt her and we being fussy uncles?" Don asked.
Xander stared at him. "What?"
"Finding a nice nanny, doing the paperwork, and letting her officially adopt since that's more legal than us doing it would be," Danny said.
"You do realize that would piss me off, not to mention Anya and Wade? And the kid would never be with her? Beyond that, it's only illegal if I'm in a marriage and adopt. Me adopting isn't. She's my pack. It's my responsibility to make sure all of my pack is taken care of. Including the future members. If she finds someone nice I won't care but if not, it's my job to make sure that baby is all right."
They both slumped and nodded. "Humans don't really go on pack principles," Danny said.
"Yeah we do. Though we usually call them friends and family or gangs." He took another drink. "If she wants someone else, I'll support that as long as they're good. If not, then no. She's my pack. It's my job to make sure as pack alpha that she's settling in well. That the cubs are taken care of." He finished his lemonade, heading to bed. Sometimes he was really certain they weren't meant to be more than fuckbuddies. Why couldn't they understand this situation?
Danny and Don shared a look, getting a shrug back. Neither one were ready for the emotional toll of having a kid. It would definitely ruin their free time and relationship when things went wrong. Because they would. So they'd talk to Horatio tomorrow to see if he might know someone who wanted to adopt. Xander would accept his recommendation. Then they'd break the pack stuff. They went to bed to cuddle Xander. Sometimes they really didn't understand how he saw things.
Though he was right, he did need more things to fuss over.
Xander looked at the maternity clothes, then at Anya. "It's all very cute."
"I know," she said, wrinkling her nose. "It's not really me. I'm not a sunny person who likes Care Bears or flowers. And why wear the statement that you're pregnant? It's rather obvious." She rubbed her mound.
"C'mon, we'll go to the other side of Miami." He walked her out shaking his head. Goth kids had to have maternity clothes, right? If not, maybe the stripper stores would. Anya would accept a mix of them. They went to the biggest pseudo goth store they could find. The teens working there were perky and preppy. They'd know where the real stuff was since they were clearly dressed properly and not from this store's stock. Anya went to browse. "Maternity clothes for her?" he asked with a point. "She's very unhappy with the cutesy flowers and stuff."
"Poet shirts," one said with a smile, coming over to show Anya that. It would gently flow over her stomach and help her a lot.
Anya sighed in pleasure. "I wore one of these back in the eighteen hundreds. I should see if they still fit."
"Doubt it," Xander quipped. "Your bra is bigger now."
"True." She smiled at the horrified young woman. "I'm Anyanka, dear." She shivered and hugged her. "Unfortunately still retired." She stroked her stomach. "I found a good man who likes the same things I do though." She smiled.
"I don't think she wants to hear about you summoning a succuba to torture," Xander said dryly, leaning against a wall. "Skirts?" he asked her.
"She can by putting the waist below her stomach or there are some stretch fabrics that would work." She went to find her some. Meeting *the* Anyanka was like meeting the real Wednesday Addam's to her. It was so cool! They spent a lot too, which was nice since she earned a commission on top of her meager salary. She suggested a few more spots and he grinned, taking the list to drive her there. He must be so cool to hang with her. She went online to find out who he was. "Oh my God," she whispered. "That's the White Knight of Sunnydale." Her coworker leaned over to see. "They used to date!" They shared a squeal. That was so awesome!
Wade came home to find Anya in a stretchy lycra/nylon long skirt and a poet shirt looking pregnant. He stared. "That really makes it obvious."
"The rest of the stuff is in the wash. There's all sorts of nasty cute things, Wade. I had to go goth shopping. And stripper shopping." She smiled. "They're in the wash too." She took a kiss. "Did you have a good rant at whoever?"
"Yeah, I did." He stroked over her stomach, earning a moan. He smirked. "Is the needy part starting early?"
"Hell yes. It's been *days*. I can't reach over the baby to use my toys. I have to mount them on something and ride them. Which is never as good as when I'm stretched across your lap." She unbuttoned his shirt. "My doctor said I'm fine for mildly rigorous sex. He said tying down was fine as long as nothing too hard hit my cervix and nothing hit my stomach or back."
"Good," he purred, taking her to get her undressed so he could be a bit kinky. He needed to test some boundaries. She'd kick him if he got out of hand. She did all the time when he didn't do what she wanted. She could even still do it doggy style as long as he wasn't pounding into her too hard. Thank God her doctor had sense.
Danny looked at the couples they went to for advice. They were having lunch away from the office. "Xander's back in pack alpha land," he said quietly.
"About Anya's baby," Adam said dryly.
"Yup." He looked at him. "I don't think I can take that sorta pain, ya know?"
Adam nodded. "I raised a great many children who weren't mine, Daniel." He stared at him. "You may still end up adopting some year. At least this one would not be horrified whenever her father had to go fight a battle to save someone."
"It's still gonna hurt and I don't think he realizes that."
Speed and Horatio shared a look then at him. "We've been talking about family stuff too," he admitted. "We're thinking about that one actually." Danny sighed in relief. "But we haven't decided."
"Xander said as long as the baby's taken care of, his alpha nature won't mind. Somehow she's still pack. I'm worried that he wasn't getting her morning sickness since she didn't get much."
Adam considered that. "I don't know much about lingering possessions. That would be something to ask Samuel."
"Is there a way to calm her down?" Danny asked. "I don't mind him being all pack alpha over things sometimes but she growled at me this morning when I nuzzled. Clearly she's not happy."
"Another thing to ask Sam," Ray pointed out. "That's not our area of expertise. Though I agree, Xander could use something to fuss at permanently. Someone to teach to cook and all that. Though he's said plenty of times he expected to go out in an apocalypse battle."
Horatio nodded. "He's said much the same to us in the past." He and Speed shared a smile then he smiled at Danny. "It will be painful no matter what, Daniel. You'll still be losing people you've known for ages."
"I know but your kid's closer."
"True." He gave him a fatherly smile. "However, you can't deny that we all feel this urge to pass on things."
"No, I can't," he sighed. "I'm screwed up and I don't want to hurt that way."
"The only way to save yourself the pain of losing people is to live as a monk," Adam pointed out.
"Because some day we'll probably lose some of the family," Ray agreed. "To a fight or old age. Or something snatching someone for good."
"I know and it sucks badly, okay? I don't wanna get too attached because of the pain."
"Pain like that means that you're still alive," Speed said. "If you don't let the things in then you're as dead inside as that former neighbor's tree." Danny snorted, shaking his head. "How did you deal with losing your natal family?"
"What if you lost Don tomorrow to some thug that took his head somehow?" Ray asked. Danny slumped, shaking his head.
Adam stroked his arm. "It won't stop the hurt, Daniel. No matter what you do, you cannot prevent that pain sometime. Because you being with someone means they deserve that level of emotion from you. Xander would be devastated if he lost you, the same as if he lost a future child or one of us. You cannot shield yourself from this and *live*."
Danny nodded. "I guess." He sighed, drinking some of his water. "It still isn't something we're ready for. Xander would hate giving up kinky sex to do baby things."
"Actually, it would probably settle Xander down a lot since he's only formed attachments to you guys," Speed said. "Nothing as deep as he had to his former friend Jesse." Danny gaped. "You guys are tight, most of the time, but that one ruined his soul, Danny. Then Willow and Buffy finished it. It could do him a lot of good to fix that. Make him more secure with you guys."
"No social worker would ever allow it with our insane life. We even talked about maybe hiring someone to take custody so we could be spoiling uncles. He said that wasn't a good idea and told us he had to make sure the pack was all right."
"He does. The same as I do," Horatio agreed. "I fully understand the overprotective, fussing, mother henning, pack alpha thing." Speed smirked at him. "It took me having to decide between helping someone and Tim to make me see I couldn't do it to everyone who needed it. I had to define my pack. Xander has a well defined inner pack and then a bigger outer pack. We're lucky enough to be inner pack."
"Think of it like family," Speed said. "Your married family is one form of pack. The extended family like siblings comes outside that." Danny nodded he understood that. "Then you have pack members who are just friends of the family, maybe a few extended family members. For him, that's probably part of the poker circle and people like Frank."
"Okay, I can get that, but why is she inner pack?"
"She was the last girl he cared about," Horatio said quietly. "She's still very important to him. He was making some very evil plans in case Wade ended up hurting her at the end of their year contract." He stared at him. "It would be a worse mess than what he did to Max for bothering his pack."
"Yup," Speed and Ray said with a grin.
"Though, if he's not mimicking her morning sickness, who would be the other inner pack member?" Adam asked. He looked at Horatio. "One of the twats?"
"Possibly. He does still try very hard not to care about them but he did basically get raised by Willow. There's also the tighter bond of their unit."
"Shared blood," Adam agreed. "We might want to see."
"I can't get any of our contacts in LA to say anything about that group," Horatio admitted. "Even Epps."
"Though, Willow is presently supposedly in England for some reason," Speed added with a smirk. "With a powerful coven to control her."
"Good!" Ray agreed. "She scares the shit outta me." He ate a bite, getting into his lunch. The others did the same. He looked at Adam, who was the master of trying not to form bonds to others. "What about you?" he asked quietly.
"Not right now," he said. "Before I married women who were newly widows or pregnant and needed my help. I can't do that right now."
Ray grinned. "Good, 'cause I'd hate to be jealous of a baby." Adam kissed him gently. "Eat, silly. Some of us gotta work in a few." They all went back to eating. "So, you two are thinking little bundles of squeal?"
Speed grinned. "Sometime soon. Horatio's always wanted a family. Kids scare the shit outta me but maybe." Horatio smiled at him. Speed looked toward the doorway. "Hmm, uniforms." They headed their way. Danny, Ray, Horatio, and he all pulled their badges.
The officer winced. "Sir, the manager said you're being very touchy feely," he said quietly.
"We're talking about adopting a friend's child," Horatio said with a small smile.
"He can blow us," Ray agreed. "Especially since Xander owns this place."
"Got it," the uniform said. "Can you maybe hurry it up? I know there's three new crime scenes."
"No one's called us," Speed said, checking his phone. "Huh. I guess Eric, Ryan, and Calleigh took them."
"Hopefully. We're nearly done."
"You can assure the little mind that we'll be telling the owner as well since this is a gay friendly place. Or supposed to be." The officer nodded, going to tell that to him on the way to pick up their lunch order. They needed to eat too. They finished up, paid the tab and put a nice tip for the waitress. It wasn't her fault her boss was a dickhead.
Pooch looked up when someone came jogging into the poker hall two days later. "Fu, we need Xander," he said quickly. "There's a problem."
"Xander?" he called. Xander came out of his game, sipping his soda.
"Xander, one of the girls on Crescent found something. It's really bad."
"What sort of bad? Like drugs bad, body bad?" Xander asked.
"Baby. Little squawking thing."
Xander nodded. He handed Fu the glass. "Pooch, get my chips cashed out for me and play my last hand," he called as he followed him. "Why didn't we call Horatio?"
"Because I think the system's royally screwed and this one would be a problem. It's *marked*."
"Mole. That one you noticed on Juan's sister and told her what it meant." Xander winced and nodded. He took him to where the baby was with the working girl who had found her.
Xander leaned down, petting her on the head. The baby squealed. "Hi, precious. Shh, it's all right." He took it gently. "Boy, girl?"
"Didn't check," the hooker said. "I'm scared, Xander. You said that mole was important."
"That mole marks girls like Buffy," he said quietly. "That means some year they'll be doing Sam and Dean stuff like I do. " She shuddered and crossed herself. He dug out his wallet and handed her a few bills. "Thank you." She nodded and left. Xander stood up slowly and carefully. "Hi, precious. Let's get you to someone to look you over. Shh, I have nummies at home. We can go home for now. Then we'll figure things out, all right?" She calmed down, staring at him. "You're not a newborn. You're too big. I want to be told if we find the parent." The gang kid nodded. "Help me get her home?"
"Of course. We'd never hurt a kid." He drove, which was nice. The corvette was sweet.
Xander looked around. "Dean!" he yelled quietly. He came jogging down the stairs, staring at the baby. "He's got a slayer mole."
"I don't know. Get Sam checking? See if Jensen can hack them if you have to or ask Wes for me? And can you please run and get him something to wear and diapers?"
"Gladly." He picked him up to see how heavy he was and about how big. The baby grinned at him so he grinned back. "Hey, cutie." He put him back onto the couch and headed out. Sam was at the University library doing some translation work for someone. He called on his way to the local mega store.
Xander looked at the boy. "We'll see what happens, kiddo. There's every chance your mommy was trying to keep you away from idiot watchers." The baby cooed and waved a hand, getting a grin back. "Let me get you something to drink." He went into the kitchen. He could fashion a bottle from a canteen. They had to during one long mystical road trip. He had milk that was good. The baby was more than happy to have that and slurped all he could.
Pooch walked in. "Oh, shit, what's that?"
"You'd think, since you have one, you'd know," Xander said dryly. "He has a slayer mole."
"Isn't that usually for girls?"
"Yup." He looked up. "We're trying to see if we need to make sure the baby doesn't have to be hidden from the English fuckers."
"Okay." He sat down. "How did you do that?"
"Ryan figured it out during one of our long cross-realms road trips. We found one kid that was nearly starving and had been abandoned beside a road. So we took it to the nearest village after feeding it. I'm not actually that bad at it." He paused the feeding and burped the baby, making him happier. "Dean's getting diapers."
"That's cool." He got comfortable. "You look good doing that." Xander grinned at him. "When are you going to tell Horatio?"
"When we know if we have to protect him from the Watchers. Because if so, he can't go into the system."
"I get that." He called Jolene to tell her to call Dean to help him know what to get. Then he took the baby, feeding it carefully. "I got to do some of this with Junior. He was a greedy butt too," he told the baby. Xander smiled, getting up to make something else. "He's probably not old enough for mush."
"That's fine. I still have to start dinner."
"Pull something out, Xander."
"I am." He came back. "It has to defrost." He sat down and took the baby back, getting smiled at. "Hi, yes I like you too." The baby cooed and he cooed back, getting baby swatted. "That's fine. Though we do need to trim your claws, kiddo." He settled in to feed the baby and relax, calming them both down. "I gave the hooker who found him a reward."
"Good. She probably appreciated that." He put the poker winnings on the ottoman. "That's yours. That hand was a total bagger."
"I know," he sighed. "I was hoping for a touch of luck." Dean came back with bags. "Cool. Say thank you, Uncle Dean?" The baby cooed and patted the bottle.
"That's a good thank you, kiddo." He put the bags down. Xander got up and one-handed dug until he got out a diaper and the wet wipes, taking the baby to clean him up. Dean paid himself back out of the poker winnings. "Should we call someone?" he asked quietly.
Pooch shook his head. "He's got a reason this time. If the Watchers come, the baby's going to be in danger."
Dean nodded. "Sammy's looking things up."
"Good. He need Jensen?"
"He said he'd call if he did." That got a nod and they settled in to wait on Xander to come out of the bathroom with the baby.
Alexx paged Horatio to her scene. Something was very wrong here. The kids were all staring at them. Horatio showed up and got out of the hummer, walking over. "What do we have here, Alexx?"
"By the way she looks, someone chased her down and killed her," she said. She looked around, then at him, getting a nod back.
Horatio walked over to one gang member he knew the affiliation of. "Do we have any idea why?"
"Yes. Xander knows," he said. "Someone got him to protect someone else because of this."
"Is Xander at home?" The kid nodded. "Thank you. Anything I should know?"
"He might need gifts."
"Was the person who chased her strange in any way?"
"Besides sounding like that guy from the movie with the hat and the big knife?"
"He was Australian?"
"I guess that's what you call them." He shrugged. "I went to public school until I got run out, Lieutenant."
"I'll talk with Xander. Do we know where he is?"
"Hunting hard but I think he's scared of Xander. For some reason I'm not sure." He shrugged and walked off.
Horatio walked back to Alexx. "We have a slight puzzle but whatever got her killed Xander is helping handle," he said quietly. "Tell me directly?"
"Gladly. Thankfully I pulled Ray as the detective." They shared a look. "Let me know?"
"Gladly. Watch out for Australians." She nodded once then rolled her eyes. He got back into the hummer and drove to Xander's. He saw the SUV that the team used and parked, walking inside. "What happened?" he asked Pooch.
"He's in the bathroom," Dean said. "Sammy's looking things up."
"Is it a demon or related?" Horatio asked. He took off his sunglasses.
Xander walked out with the clean, mostly naked baby. He held him up and pointed at the mole. "Slayer mole on a boy."
Horatio stared. "That is not a good thing. The mother was found. The Blood said that you were handling part or the problem."
"One of the working girls on Crescent found him. One of the younger Bloods came to find me at Fu's to handle it. Scared to death."
"The Australian who chased her, according to him, may be scared of you."
"He'd better be scared of me," Xander assured him. "Fucking watchers."
"Don't swear in front of the baby," Horatio ordered, staring at him. Xander grinned. "We'll handle it if so."
"Sam's researching about this. And possibly talking to them discreetly."
"Excellent. For now, can you handle it?" Xander nodded, looking serious. "Then I'll check with Sam before we make any decisions. Like a social worker."
Xander shook his head. "If they want him and he's in the system, he'll disappear, Horatio. They've done it all over the world and the system is always too overcrowded to care about a single kid."
"I know." He patted him on the cheek. Then he put on his sunglasses. "We'll find things out." He left, going to tell Ray that. He called Sam once he and Ray had talked. Sam told them it was a problem and that the Council always killed any males marked in case they were the promised end to the slayer line. He and Jensen had downloaded the full employee files and all that they might need if any of them were in Miami. Ray went to get those from Jensen while Sam went to help Xander. Horatio went to tell Danny and Don that they had a guest for a few days and it was a very bad thing.
Sam walked in, seeing the amused looks. He looked. Hubert was nuzzling the baby, making him giggle. "Is he giving him a bath?"
"No, just nuzzling," Xander said with a grin. "Hubert likes him." He petted them both. "You're both good boys." Hubert purred at him. "We're talking about getting our own, Hubert." Dean gaped. "Anya's. She is my pack."
Sam nodded. "She would be." He sat down, taking the baby from the dragon to hold. "Hey, kid. How are you?" The baby cooed and wiggled, smiling at him. "It's good you're happy." He tucked him into his lap and let the dragon crawl over to nuzzle him some more. "Why that spot?"
"I dropped some milk on it earlier," Xander said. "He likes it."
Pooch shook his head as he stood up. "Let me tell the others in case they catch the stupid bastard out and about, guys. If you need help, yell." They all nodded, smiling at him. He left, going back to the apartments. The others had to know.
Clay looked up from cleaning his pistol. "How is he?"
"He's loving Hubert nuzzling him. He's got Dean and Sam. Horatio said there's one in town."
"Horatio got the whole file from Jensen." He looked up at him. "I meant Xander."
"He's fine. He's calm. He diapered well enough. Got the baby cleaned up pretty well. Sam said that they're going to try to kill the baby. Something about a prophesied end of the slayer line."
"Prophecy is for the weak," Clay snorted. "We've all seen Xander bend them time and again." Pooch nodded. "He handling that all right?"
"Yeah. He's been very handy with the kid. Horatio knows so they're covered officially."
"Good. Should we set up a watch?"
"Danny and Don will be home soon and I'm fairly certain Xander could handle anything that happened."
"True. He can drop back into Old Xander mode as he put it pretty fast." They shared a look. "Set a watch later." Pooch nodded, going to talk to the others and Wade. Wade was getting antsy again.
Wade walked in an hour later looking like he just got out of a shower. "What's the huge emerg.... Huh," he said, staring at the baby sitting up on the couch, propped up by Hubert. He looks around. "Xander?" he called pleasantly.
"Bathroom!" he called. He came out a minute later wiping his hands. "Sorry, had milk at the poker game before soda." He looked at the baby then at him. "Why did you come over? I thought you were going to nuzzle the baby from the inside again."
"I was. Then Clay said that the half mil contract on your life by the Council was being hunted for some reason."
"Yeah, apparently they killed his mom already." Wade gave him an odd look. Xander nodded. "So we're babysitting." He grinned.
"Huh." He came over to look at the kid. He had killed a few over the years but never gotten this close to one. "He's hefty and pudgy."
"Babies are like that, Wade."
"I don't usually deal with babies."
"Me either but I figure it's good practice and if I have to, I can defend him pretty well. Before you say a word, Hubert has a hiding pendant and he only has to touch it to hide them both and I'm armed so I would've come out of the bathroom to blow them away."
"Good!" He looked around. "Did we remine the living room with guns?"
"Two or three," he said, pointing at their spots. Wade got a few more to put around the house. Xander sat down beside the baby, smiling at him. "How're we?" The baby beamed at him and waved the pendant. "That's very skilled. Some day we might even get to teach you how to make your own." He took it back and put it around the baby's neck. "There. It's not too tight so it'll be okay as long as we don't end up choking you." He put the baby back in his lap, letting Hubert rest beside them. "Hubert, this is our temporary baby, like with Junior," he reminded him. Hubert snorted and nuzzled the baby again.
Wade shook his head. "You're insane."
"Thanks." He grinned. "How was the trip home?"
"Decent enough. I talked to my old CO who told me I was feeling normal again."
"It happens even to the most extraordinary sorts," Xander assured him. "Even me. Then again, all the songs say that love does that to you."
Wade shuddered. "Eww. Mushy things." He sat down, watching Xander handle the baby. "How did you learn all that?"
"Watching others. One of the times I was stolen there was a real harem and they had kids so I learned a bit then. Of course, I freed them all when I got out of there and killed the bastard." Wade snickered, nodding. He looked at the baby. "Some day you're going to be just as tough as Faith is." The baby cooed at him so he grinned back. "I promise you will. Even if I do have to give you knives and guns for your birthdays, kid." Dean and Sam both came back. "Have fun?"
"The idiot watcher got someone possessed as a diversion," Sam said, sitting down and stealing the baby. "Some day I'll want one of you." The baby grinned at him. "Not this year but some year."
Xander looked up, feeling that itchy feeling. "Sam, move," he ordered. He and Dean moved with the baby. Wade hopped up as people came in the doorway. Xander shot them, not moving at all. Dean and Sam had the baby safely upstairs. It was in a bag, as they had planned earlier. The first two fell. Wade got another one. Then Xander got the last one who tried to burst in through the front door. "Huh," he said, putting his gun back. "Wade, can you do a perimeter search while I call this in?"
"Gladly." He checked the bodies, all dead. Then he went to do a search. The community guards were coming. "He's calling it in," he promised. "We're guarding someone's kid and Xander from these assholes who want to kill him." That got a nod and they updated that call to say that the resident had already called an officer. Probably the ones he lived with.
Ryan sped up and screeched to a halt inside the gate, running for inside. "What the hell?" he demanded.
Xander shrugged. "I don't know. Guys, it's fine."
"He's napping," Sam called back.
"Cool. Thanks." He looked at Ryan, then got up and went to check their ID's. "Not Council. Wade, they're not Council," he called.
Wade came in to look at the ID. "No, they're not. That's some fundamentalist group upstate." He handed it to Ryan. "Why attack you then?" Xander waved his braid. "Have you been getting hate mail I haven't seen?"
"I've been getting hate mail?" Xander asked.
"Two pieces from someone who thought you were perverted for being gay. Apparently you're warping Dean and Sam too."
"Huh. Never saw those."
"I gave them to Don." He looked at Ryan and the others walking in. "We have no clue," he told Cougar. "They're from the fundies upstate."
Cougar nodded then looked at the ID. He texted that to Clay, who would have Jensen look them up.
Wade's phone rang with a message a minute later. "Aww, they've declared an anti-gay Jihad, Xander, and you're a huge target. They've got suicide bombers too."
Xander looked over his arm. "Can I go dance at them?"
"Hell no," Ryan said, calling that in to Horatio. His phone was busy so he called Frank to tell him. Still busy. He called Don, who was on his way. "I'm hoping Jensen's talking with Frank and Horatio." Cougar nodded. More officers pulled up. "They invaded," Ryan told them. "We're expecting the ME and the two detectives who live here." The officers nodded, marking off their car. Ryan went to check it, finding a bomb. He called dispatch to warn them. That got more officers there.
Wade looked at Xander. "Take him somewhere safer?"
"The hidden house is in the territory the idiot was hunting in," he said quietly.
"Good point. Have another?"
Xander considered it. "One I'm flipping." The officer nearest them looked. "Earlier today a member of a group that hates my ass for surviving my hometown killed someone to try to get her son to kill him. A gang member brought me to the baby to protect it. Horatio already knows so the baby's protected until that person is caught."
"Sounds reasonable. Putting him in a home tonight would expose him and them to danger." Xander nodded. "So we thought it was them?"
"Yeah. They have a half mil contract on my pretty ass," Xander said dryly. "All for helping my former friends." The guy growled and lunged. Xander kicked his ass. Wade helped. Cougar pounced him too. "So, a member of the Council?" he asked dryly.
Ryan reached down to get his wallet. "No Council ID, Xander. He belongs to that church up the road that's affiliated with the fundies though." He handed it to Horatio when he stomped in. "Bomb on their car, H."
"We've already taken care of that, Mr. Wolfe." Wade let him see the information he had. "Jensen told us. Xander, is he one of the Council as well?"
"I don't think so."
"Men like you should be killed!" he shouted. "You shouldn't be around children! You'll hurt them!"
"I have no desire to touch a kid that way," Xander said. "Gay men only want other gay men, not kids. Really. That's all a lie by a group of fuckers I'm going to kill some day." He knocked him out. Then he stood up with help from Cougar. He looked at Horatio. "Backup house?"
"It's in gang territory from what I've found out," Horatio said.
"Yes it is."
Horatio nodded. "Go. Cougar? Wade, can you head over first to make sure it's perfectly safe?"
"If I knew where it was." Xander hissed in his ear, getting a nod. "That's actually a nicer neighborhood and the gang there is highly bitchy." He left.
Xander got the boys, the baby, and Cougar, heading over there. They took the Impala Xander had pulled out and let Sam use.
Horatio looked around. "Any others?" They all shuddered. "Mr. Wolfe, please arrest that one and read him his rights when he wakes up." He looked around. "Did they take Hubert?"
"He probably went with the baby," Ryan said. "I didn't see him when I came in." He looked around, no cowering dragon. "Check under the couch and ottomans? That way if he's bleeding we can handle it?" Horatio looked then shrugged.
Don stomped in. "What the fucking hell happened?" he demanded.
"Calm down," Horatio ordered patiently. "That fundamentalist group upstate has decided to start a jihad against gay men."
"Starting with Xander?" he snorted.
"He's more open and they probably thought he was easier to get to," Ryan told him. "Plus he's got underworld contacts from the poker circle so even more evil."
Don sneered at the dead bodies. "They're going to need to recruit a lot of people if I know my boy."
Horatio patted him on the back. "They'll need to anyway when we arrest them before Xander has to shoot them."
"Good point. The Council fucker?"
"Wolfe, can you find him?"
"I'll ask around," he promised. "Or you can." Don gave him a dirty look. "They're at the backup house."
"Crap. I have no idea where that is." He stomped off to call Danny. They had to go visiting the circle. If only to find out where his boyfriend was. They walked into Fu's together, seeing the scared look. "Two things. Council fucking moron who's after the baby?" Don asked.
Fu shrugged. "We're all looking for him, Detectives."
"Second, backup house?" Danny asked.
"In Tangle territory," Fu said more quietly.
"Like Sonny's old haunts?" Danny asked. Fu nodded. "Huh. No wonder he didn't tell us." He smirked. "That fundie group upstate busted in to kill him."
Fu gave them a funny look. "The one on tv yelling that hurricanes are because men like Xander like sex?" They both nodded. "Oh, dear. They're totally insane." He walked off. "I'll tell Wyatt."
"Thanks," Don said. "So far he's fine. So is the little thing." That gave them about a ten block radius to search. Danny found someone and let Don talk to him. They'd only sneer at Danny. "Where's my goofy bitch?"
The gang kid stared at him. "We saw them drive past. We saw Wade. What's going on?" Don showed him the information. "Can't say as I like gay people either but I know not to touch that one. He'd kill my stupid ass if I did." Don smirked and nodded. "Someone tried?"
"Five. Broke into the house. Xander and Wade got 'em. Also, there's a Watcher idiot running around looking for the baby he's guarding," he said quietly.
"Fucker's in Jamaican areas. He used to live among them. Likes their hookers." He smirked. "Why's he after a baby?"
"He's Watchers Council and wants to kill the baby for being born, some prophecy thing we heard, and Xander's still got a contract out on him for his hunting stuff."
"You mean he did Winchester things?"
"Yeah, out by LA," Don said with a smirk. "Starting at sixteen."
"Damn," he said, looking awed. "No wonder he's so tough." He pointed. "One over, around, then the blue shutters, Detective. Tell your other bitch to stay inside." He got up and walked off to share that information.
Don got in to drive. "The watcher's in the Jamaican part of town." Danny called in that update and they found the house. No parking of course. Wade came out to tell them how to get to the garage. It didn't have any room but they could park in front of it for now. It was safer than having the car keyed or jacked.
They walked inside, finding Xander dancing the baby as the bottle warmed in the microwave. Don plucked the baby from him, staring at him. "It's coming, calm down." The baby stared at him then grinned. Don grinned back. "Good boy." He handed him back and got the bottle out to test and then hand over. "So?"
"Heard it from Horatio." Xander took a kiss. The baby cooed at them. "Go sit." They walked out to the living room. Sam was on the computer system talking to Jensen. "Is that... That's a huge ass computer screen."
"The mainframes are upstairs," Dean said dryly. "He got the idea when he met another version of himself that was working in the underworld by killing bad idiots."
Xander nodded. "He accidentally ended up taking over a lot of groups and starting an underground syndicate." He sat down to feed the baby, getting happy baby noises.
Sam looked at them. "It's a longer story. We didn't know about the merging times until he told us. It apparently automatically blocks out." He went back to chatting. Cougar and Wade were watching the street. "Four bedrooms upstairs. The mainframe room has a futon if it's needed. Kitchen is stocked with pantry stuff."
"We can handle that," Danny agreed. He looked around. "Didn't this used to be dinky, dark apartments?"
"Yup," Xander agreed with a grin. "It took about two months for Patrick to set this up for me." He took a kiss and smiled at the baby, who pouted. "Did you want one?" He kissed him on the head, getting a coo back. Xander burped him and then went back to feeding him. Don helped Xander out of the messy t-shirt and cleaned up the spot that was on the back of the couch, then went to throw it in the washer. He came back. "Should one of us cook?"
"If you want," Dean offered with a grin. "There's a very small armory here."
"It's big enough," Wade assured him as he came down the stairs. "Crime lab hummer outside, Xander."
"No clue. I didn't recognize it."
"Non-felony?" Danny asked. He glanced outside carefully. "Nah, that's not our lab's hummer. Wrong shade." He called that in. Two cruisers pulled up behind them. "There's no way." He updated that and more cruisers pulled in, real ones this time. The others had the wrong sort of lights, the old style that were taken out of service over a decade ago.
Xander glanced out. "That's Travers," he said with a nod. "The one in the lead." He sat down again. "I have no idea why they're up there."
"Me either," Danny said. He told Speed that. Horatio, Frank, and Ray showed up. They were all badass when they wanted to be. They stopped the raiding party. A few tried to run but Cougar got them from the roof. Horatio looked up and smiled at him, nodding a bit then going back to arresting people.
Wade looked out there. "Max was working with them on something genetic," he said. He walked out there, stopping one who was struggling. "Don't even," he told him. The man went limp, giving him a horrified look. "Horatio, my former boss used to work with Mr. Travers there. Something genetic."
"Interesting." He tightened his cuffs. "That's probably not a good indication of them being good people."
"No, but Max said they weren't worthy of destroying them once he got what he wanted. He called them pathetic." He looked around, nodding at one of the gang kids. "Go home." He ran off. He looked at Horatio again. "Need help in interrogation? Anya's in *that* stage and I need help to get it up again."
Horatio gave him a look over the edge of his sunglasses. "I did not need to know that, Wade." Wade smirked. "We can't let you torture people in police custody either. So perhaps the nice S&M club down in Bocca could help give you that edge to make her happier?"
"That's actually a good idea. She wanted to go out." He smirked. "Thanks, Horatio. I'll take her after all this is done."
"I'd rather see it there than anywhere else," he said dryly, walking the prisoners off since the transport van was there. He looked back. "Wade, we are talking." Wade gave him an amused look. Horatio shrugged. Then he smiled. "We'll see. We're talking."
"Thanks, Horatio. You're a nice guy. The baby might be saner than we are that way." He walked off again. He saw another gang kid. "Stupid, that's the one who wanted the baby." They fled from the cops. He went back inside. "Horatio's thinking about adopting?" he asked Xander.
"He was talking to Speed about it," he said with a smile. "We've been talking about it because she's my pack."
Wade smiled. "Thanks, kid. I'm having that uncomfortable warm, fuzzy feeling again. I really have got to torture something."
"Write Anya a dirty email about it," Dean said dryly. "That way it's like foreplay."
"Yeah, I can." He sat down to do that.
Don shook his head. "Just don't read it out loud. It might scare the baby." Or him. Or Danny. Danny was a bit fragile now and then.
"As Anya says, that's what summoning succuba is for," Wade quipped.
"You know, the new head incubus is actually a Crypt," Xander said dryly. Wade gave him an odd look. "We had to deal with it when they stole us."
"Oh." He shook his head. "Does he know?"
"By now, yeah." He smirked. "I broke the initiation pendant."
"That one owed you how much?" Danny asked dryly.
"Few grand. Aisha picked him." Wade moaned, shaking his head. He shared that with her too. Then he went back to chatroom smut with her. She was getting very happy with that. Even though she couldn't reach over her stomach to play with herself anymore.
Xander grinned at the baby. "Pretty soon we'll figure things out and make sure you're going to be really safe and loved. Then we'll be spoiling uncles. Yes we will." The baby cooed and got happy, wiggling and wanting to play. Xander slid to the floor with him so they could play with Hubert, who had snuck into the car.
Don and Danny shared a look. Xander was good with kids. They'd have to see.
Wesley Wyndham-Pryce showed up in Miami. He had been called by the nice Lieutenant Xander worked with. He went to the crime lab from the airport, smiling as he checked in. Horatio got him a few moments later and walked him back to his office. "How can I help, Lieutenant? Xander has said some very complimentary things about you."
"I consider Xander like a son." He sat down and so did the other man. "We seem to have a problem with your former employers."
"The Council." Horatio nodded. "Why?" Horatio held up the picture he had taken of the baby's back. "A new slayer?"
"By the records, his name is Christopher."
"Oh, dear, that is a problem." He sighed. "The end of the slayer line will be brought about by one who bears a mark of a slayer but is male."
Horatio nodded. "What if he is raised to be a hunter?"
"They would never allow it."
"So they won't quit searching for him?"
"No, not if they're aware he lives. Who has him?"
"They've already killed his mother. Xander is protecting him at the moment."
"He is frightfully good at that sort of thing."
"Yes, he is." He smiled. "How can we handle this since Xander looked up that prophecy and said it could easily have fit him, though he wasn't marked?"
"They are worried that he warped the lines. Grandly in fact. That's why they want him gone." He considered it. "As long as they know he is alive, they will not stop. I have no desire to see that prophecy started or the boy killed."
"I don't either. I know that the girls' work is important, though the current one I could do without."
"Faith's been here?"
"I was talking about the other one."
"Oh, Buffy. No, technically Faith is the current slayer but she's in jail."
Horatio nodded. "Does she want to kill Xander as well?"
"Not as far as I know. I know he's written her a few times." Horatio smiled. "I have no idea how to disprove that prophecy. It's been known for ages. Each of us is taught that it is our duty to protect the line. Though that has taken a rather brutal turn in the last few centuries."
"Yes, I'm aware after talking to Mr. Travers with Anya present."
"Oh, is she here? That's lovely. Are she and Xander comfortable again?"
"She's dating Xander's assistant and is due fairly soon." Wesley gaped. He smiled. "In a few months in fact."
"Interesting. I'll make sure nothing's being said about that child. Buffy told us his assistant is fairly mean and slightly evil."
"Only when he wants to be. The same as most soldiers can be."
"Good point I suppose." He called someone. "Read me the Male Slayer prophecy," he requested. It got repeated. "No, read it. The full one if you could. Because a great many of us are in jail in Miami thanks to someone panicking and I need to make sure." He listened. "What is that last section again?" He wrote it down. "That contradicts the first. So what if he learned to hunt? Yes, actually, someone from Sunnydale does know hunters. As do I." He listened, making notes. "So that would negate it? Please do fax me a full copy. I'm at the crime lab. May I have them fax it here?" Horatio wrote down the number. He read it off. "Thank you, Marjorie. I'll see if they can be released." Horatio shook his head. "It might take a bit for bail and things to be set though. Thank you, dear." He hung up. "My cousin."
"Xander has told us that many Watchers are sucked in through hereditary bonds."
"Quite. I wanted to be a librarian." He smiled. "My father however had other ideas. Rupert was the same way."
"Him, I would rather we not see in Miami ever again."
"I've heard. At least Xander could force himself to work with them during the last battle. I'm told he and the ones who came to help him were quite instrumental in stopping it quickly."
"As I heard as well."
Wade walked in. "Someone said you called me nice and fluffy again, Horatio. Can you please quit trashing my nasty rep?"
Horatio smiled. "I've never said it to the press, Wade. This is Wesley. He used to work with the Sunnydale group and now works in LA."
"I spotted him during surveillance." He found the bug and held it up. Horatio took it with a mean smirk. "Quit telling people I'm nice. I'm only nice when I'm making Anya scream and Xander's rotted my brain with hormones so I'll let him go shopping." He looked at Wesley. "Prophecies? You guys actually believe in prophecies?"
"Yes, the Council had tomes of them in the library." He smiled. "Quite a few your boss has warped."
"Good of him. Prophecies take all the fun out of life." He looked at Horatio again. "That Jihad? Are they still going?"
"Quite. The State Police up there don't believe there's a reason to raid them." Horatio held up a hand when Wade opened his mouth. "The local FBI office feels differently."
"Thank God. Psychotic fundamentalists are just *wrong* unless you're using them to cover a plan or to manipulate a war." He walked off shaking his head.
"Yes, I can see why Anya likes him," Wesley said with a smile. "He's much like her."
"Quite. They do seem to fit together very well," Horatio agreed. The receptionist brought in the fax. "Thank you." He read it over then let Wesley have it. "That last paragraph does seem to state that he can be turned to your side."
"Yes, it does. Can I talk to them? Then I can call around to get them bail money if they're given it."
"We can do that." He walked him down to the holding cell.
Wesley cleared his throat. "There's a caveat with the prophecy, Travers." Travers sneered but walked over. "Here, this last paragraph." He read it and shuddered. "The rogue demon hunting network could probably easily find him a parent to train him," he said quietly. He looked at him. "The remains of the Sunnydale team has heard. At least the ones no longer there. Including Anyanka."
"She's no longer a vengeance demon," Travers said bluntly.
"Yes but I'm sure she kept in touch. Also, she's pregnant." Travers gave him a horrified look. "I've met her mate, he seems quite a lot like her." He smiled. "So, can we arrange that? That would entrust him with the secrets and teach him to honor the lines."
"Who would decide the parents?" he demanded.
"Harris is here. He has protection over the child at the moment. He has ties and so do I."
Travers looked at the others. "Who gave you that copy?"
"Marjorie. I had her get the full version from the book. They never told us the last paragraph either." He smiled. "I can also call her back to tell her you need bail money."
"Do so." Wesley nodded, calling that in. "We would have to make sure he stayed in the life."
"I can make sure Xander knows that," Horatio promised. "There is a rather close-knit group of hunters in the US. He has some friends in it." He took the prophecy back. "Though he will destroy you all if he sees you in Miami. That one who killed the baby's mother will not be going home." He walked Wesley off.
"I've told Patricia," he called back. "She said she'll tell the Counsel and he'll come." He smiled. "At least you're all together and not in a real cell with real prisoners." A few shuddered at that image. Wesley smiled. "May I meet with Xander?"
"I can have him show up." He pointed. He was cooing at the baby. They walked over to him. Xander took the prophecy to read. He looked at them. "We think it could help if perhaps Dean and Sam oversaw the baby's placement?"
"I can arrange that," he agreed. He looked at Wes. "They get the hell out of Miami. One way or another. I'm not going to relax until they're gone and I do hold a grudge against them."
"I know, Xander. I've already pointed out that you're going to go evil to stop them." He smiled. "He is adorable."
"He's very happy. Hubert loves him too." He grinned. "He spent all afternoon nuzzling him." Wesley laughed, leaving them to talk. "I'll let you know when he's safely found a home."
"I have already talked to the social worker, who agreed it was unusual but to protect the child was the best thing."
"Then we'll go visiting." He stood up. "C'mon, let's get the unclies and go visit that bar place they liked to hang out at. Yes we will. We can even bring Hubert."
"Then he is with you?"
"Yeah, he snuck into Sam's lap." He grinned. "Thank you, Horatio."
"I don't want to see any children hurt, Xander. You know that." Xander gave him a one-armed hug then left. Horatio watched, smiling because he was adorable as a fussy father sort. Xander should definitely adopt sometime.
Xander opened the portal and warped it to the new location. They walked out together.
"Relax, people," Dean ordered. "Just us." They sat down at the bar, letting Ellen spray them with holy water. "Thanks, really. I was sweaty." He gave them a dirty look. Xander closed the portal and sat down last. Hubert got lifted up by Sam. He handed over the prophecy. "The Watchers tried for the baby earlier. That last paragraph sounds a shitload like us."
She read it, then nodded. "It does. Though I've heard they're spoiled brats."
"Only Buffy," Xander said, smiling at her. "The ones the Council raises are like soldiers. They don't shop, they don't get to go emo, they don't get to cry at movies. They can't date, they can't drive, nothing."
"Faith?" she snorted.
"Faith was hurting and if we had paid more attention to her then it might not have let her go to the old Mayor." He stared at her. "She saw her Watcher, who saved her life from the streets, tortured and killed in front of her. Then she ran to us and our dramas of the current teenage lives. Giles expected her to be like Buffy and never really gave it any thought. We were all a bit guilty of that."
"That's bad," she agreed.
"Faith's had a tough time and the old Mayor went daddy over her. She's redeeming herself and paying her dues."
"I heard." She looked at the baby. "He's adorable."
"We found a copy of his birth certificate," Sam said, handing that over. "Obviously we need someone good."
She nodded. "We would. He'll be strong."
"If he's got the gifts of the pre-called girls, he'll be mostly normal but heal a bit faster," Xander said. "If the spirit does enter him, even for a day, he'll have the other gifts. And I will be a good long-distance uncle sort."
She smiled. "It'll help him I'm sure, Mr. Harris." Xander grinned. "May I?" He let her hold the baby. "Good weight."
"He loves Hubert." Hubert grunted to agree, nuzzling the baby again. "What is on that spot, Hubert?" He licked it and the baby cackled, kicking and playing with his hands. "Okay."
She smiled. "You're incredibly adorable. We'll see what we can arrange."
"The Lieutenant over the crime lab wants to make sure he's got a good parent," Dean said. "We have to report back."
"I understand that. Social workers?"
"Horatio kept them out of it," Xander told her. "They agreed keeping him safe was more important."
"Even better." She handed him to Sam, who cooed and cuddled him. She went to make a few phone calls. Most of the hunters who were anywhere nearby showed up within the next few hours.
One stumbled in and stared at Hubert. "What the hell is that thing?" he demanded, pulling a gun.
"Touch my baby dragon, watch me rip your head off and fuck the hole," Xander said bluntly, staring at him. "Unless you meant the baby? At which time I'll make you fuck that gun if you bring it near him." The guy backed down, giving him a funny look.
"Hubert's cool, Parsons," Dean said, looking at him. "He loves us. He's Xander pet dragon." He held him up. "See, perfectly nice."
Hubert blew a bit of steam at him, giving him a dirty look. He grumbled so Dean put him back on the bar, letting Xander pet him. He had the baby again, it was napping in his lap.
Parsons moved around the wall to a table. "Is he sane, Ellen?"
"Yeah, you just pissed him off, Parsons. He's from the Sunnydale team originally." Xander smirked and waved.
"Doesn't look like a werewolf," someone said casually.
"No, Oz is presently in France," Xander said.
"Damn, you're Harris," he said. Xander smirked and nodded. "Heard about the last battle. Nice job."
"Thank you. I'll tell the others you said so." He smiled. He looked at Ellen.
"We've got a few more coming, kids." She handed over the faxed sheets. "The baby's part of that. Notice the last paragraph."
They read it and passed it around. One sighed, looking at the baby. "So he needs a daddy?"
"Or a mommy," Xander said. "Or both or a matched set of daddies or mommies. As long as they're good to him. Because I'll be an uncle."
That one smiled. "That's always handy." He looked at the baby. "How old?"
"Six months in about a week," Sam said. "We have a copy of his birth certificate." That got a nod. "His mother got taken out by the Council. The Lieutenant is entrusting us to make sure his parents are going to be good and report to him."
"They've been convinced that him turning into a hunter will keep that last paragraph in line," Xander said.
"So we need someone good," Dean agreed. "Because if he's visited by the spirit and tagged, he's going to be faster, stronger, and know a lot more instinctively about weapons."
"Faster healing too," Xander added.
"Like them?" one asked with a point at Sam.
"Buffy tends to heal a broken bone in about a day to a day and a half."
"Huh. Them?" he asked with a grin.
"Within hours." Dean smirked. "It's really handy when things want to kidnap our pretty asses."
"Definitely," Xander agreed. He felt an immortal coming and looked toward the door. She walked in, hand on her gun. "Hi. Xander Harris," he said, holding out his free hand.
She stared. "I've heard." She shook it. "Marian Bailick. Yours?"
"Needing a parent," Xander said. "Prophecy said if he's not a hunter he'll destroy the Council."
"Huh." She nodded. "He's pretty all scrunched up like that." She took him to hold, sitting down at one of the tables. The baby woke up and blinked then looked around. Sam came over and the baby reached for him. Then he stared at people from Sam's lap. He liked that better. "You could, Sammy."
"Nah, we're training with Xander. There's tons of things that we can learn from him."
"Beyond that, I don't think I can handle diapers for very long," Dean said. "Or a carseat in the Impala." They all snickered at that. "Dad used to say it was weird." He shrugged. "So we're hoping."
The one from earlier took him to hold, getting cuddled. "He's sweet."
"He's very sweet," Xander sighed. "He's made me want to adopt a friend's baby all the more." That got a smile from the group.
The baby got passed around but some of them made him look around for Sam. So they were passed over by the others. It came down to a few and the baby loved all of them. They got together to talk and he ended up with a nice female hunter who already had one kid. A few more came in and cooed over the baby but the baby cuddled her and flirted with them. Xander handed over the bag they had of his stuff. She smiled. "Thanks, boys."
Xander wrote down his address, staring at her. "I want updates, pictures, and I'm sending him guns and knives for presents once he's old enough to waddle around with them."
"Give stuffed animals until he's about four, kid." Xander grinned before opening a portal so they could leave. Hubert gave the baby one last nuzzle then left too. She smiled, looking at the baby. "He's neat for being a bit tough and a tiny bit strange, huh?" The baby cooed in her ear. She pocketed the address.
"I want a copy of that," someone called. She let them copy it down. "Sammy's better at research than I am." They all grinned at that admission. "Was that really Harris from Sunnydale?" A few nodded. "Huh. I didn't know he was still hunting."
"Yeah, all the demons that want to own him and the Winchester boys as concubines," Ellen said. "It's what gave them that self-healing gift too." They all nodded at that. They had heard rumors. The one immortal in the room smiled at that cover story. She had heard Xander was good to their training. She took that address to so she could stop in someday to look over the research information he had.
Dean wrote down what he knew about her for Horatio, letting Sam email it. That would cover things. They were still at the backup house thanks to the stupid jihad movement. The trio were in their room talking about babies. Dean and Sam shared a look. "It'd do him good," Sam said quietly. "We might leave but they wouldn't."
"He could also outlive them," Dean shot back quietly.
"True," Sam sighed. "It'd still give him someone to fuss over."
Dean nodded. "It would. More than a student and less than a third boyfriend."
"Jensen does make a good one," Sam said with a grin.
"He's bouncy like Greg and Xander too." They shared a grin. "Plus he can apparently wear him out somehow by himself."
"I need tips," Sam said. "I need to bow at his feet to get tips."
"You and me both," Dean agreed. They smiled at the noise upstairs. Clearly the boys were easing the baby desires. "You know, they might be able to find a way to make him pregnant."
"Don't even suggest that," Wade called. "Eww, boys. Go to bed."
"Funny, he doesn't look like Dad or Clay," Sam quipped. A minute later Sam's phone beeped with a text message. He cackled, showing it to Dean.
//Good job creeping out Wade, but go to bed. Tomorrow will be insane with Xander being bouncy.//
Dean shook his head. "Nark," he called. They packed up and went up to their shared room. It even had two beds. Xander had planned for them. Thankfully he didn't believe the rumors that said they were screwing. They were still fighting the rumors in the poker circle.
Dean walked into the poker game the next day, staring at them. "Guys, whoever leaked the location of the backup house to the fucking freaks by Pensacola, Xander said if you owe him pay him today or else and make a suicide note." A few shuddered. "He hates having to kill people who want to beat him to death for taking it up the ass. That makes seven and even Wade's trying *really* hard to stop him. None of us are succeeding."
"Is Harris really that bad?" one new guy asked. "I've heard rumors....."
"Last night he shot three people without getting up," Dean said. "Some fundie nuts who want to start a holy war against gay people broke into the house. Today they broke into the backup house and Xander is *livid*. There's no escaping the temper this time. Even Horatio's taking cover."
"If we find out, we'll present them to Red," the dealer assured him.
Dean shrugged. "It won't save them. Tell the others?" They all nodded, starting the calling around. The dealer knew the main number of most of the other places.
"That baby?" the dealer asked.
"A hunter has him. He' safe." That got a smile. "It's made Xander want to adopt all the more." He left.
Horatio looked up as he was paged over the intercom. That was unusual, they never used it. He got up and walked down to the reception desk. "You paged?" he asked calmly.
She pointed at the pacing man. Horatio cleared his throat. The man spotted him and came over babbling. "You have to save me, Lieutenant. Xander's going to kill me. A poker contact asked me about his backup spot and then it got raided by those freaks! He's put around I should kill myself after I pay him! You have to save me! They said even Wade can't stop him! Please!" he begged, going to his knees.
Speed, who had come out at the page too stared at him. "That's not really where I want you near my husband."
The thug whimpered. "Please save me?"
"We can do that. Was it unintentional?" Horatio asked, keeping his voice calm and quiet. He wanted to calm this one down before he ran off and jumped into traffic. He helped him up. "Which one did you tell?"
"We can talk to him to see who he told," Horatio said, leading him off. "Let's talk in a room. That way you can sit and calm down. I will keep them from killing you," he said when he balked going over to the homicide side of the station.
"No! Don's there and he'll kill me too! He vowed he was going to kill us! Even the officers said he'd kill us! Then Xander told him not to bother, he'd be doing it and it would be epic and I'd be a mess and I have a wife I just married two years ago," he wailed. "Please!"
"Calm down," Horatio ordered. He led him to another area to talk. Speed followed. So did Frank. "Tell us what happened? The only thing I've heard is that there was another attempted attack." The guy broke out crying. Horatio patted him on the back. "Calm down. Let me know what's going on so I can stop them."
"They said you've tried."
"I have," Horatio agreed. "I can try again. I can even get the team into it."
The man babbled about what had happened. Frank got him arrested since he demanded to be put into solitary and confessed to doing bad things so he'd get away from that family. Horatio went to talk to Don. Don was still growling and looking like he was possessed by Xander's hyena helper. "Calm down," Frank ordered.
"Fuck no! Those people are going to fucking die even if I have to do it my own goddamn self!" Don said hotly.
Ray looked at him. "Damn, you sound like you're from Chicago instead of New York," he joked. Don scowled at him. "You sound like my old partner on a rip."
"The Mountie?" Frank asked, looking confused.
"The other one."
"Oh." He looked at Don. "There's agents handling it."
Don snorted. "Yeah, right." He stomped off.
"Don, your gun," Horatio ordered, holding out a hand. Don glared. "That way you cannot become a vigilante," he said quietly. "Please."
"Am I suspended?"
"If you walk out of here with that piece, yes," Frank said, staring him down. "The agents are handling it."
Don handed over his gun. "No they're not. They're fucking themselves with their thumbs again." He stomped off. He got onto his bike and rode off in a blast of noise.
"Damn he's pissed," Ray said dryly.
"The thug that just confessed to us said Xander advised suicide notes," Horatio said.
Ray nodded. "Might help if they paid him off too."
"Yes, I'm sure that was mentioned," Frank said dryly. He and Horatio walked off. "Fu?"Frank asked.
"No. Bigger." They got into a hummer and drove off. They had to get Xander calmed down somehow and make the others quit fearing for their lives.
Wade walked up to Jensen's apartment, handing him over. "Calm him down," he growled. "Now."
"Good doggy," Jensen quipped, petting Xander. He got growled at for it. "Okay," he said. He kissed him. "Tell me what happened?" Xander got up to pace and rant. Wade heard Junior and made him go bother a different uncle for now. Xander was swearing too much. Jensen watched. "You better?"
"No," he growled. "I'm going to destroy things."
Jensen pulled him closer, staring into his eyes. "Let us destroy things."
"No! I can destroy things!" He got free and went back to pacing.
"I know you can. I've seen you destroy a whole lot of people and enjoyed every minute of it." He stopped Xander again, holding him. It worked when Jensen was this worked up. Xander was still struggling so he put his head on his shoulder, breathing in his ear. Xander went limp. Jensen grinned. "Let us help?" he whispered. "I want to help destroy things this time." Xander stared at him. "I do."
"But just ruining them isn't enough. They broke into the backup house. One of them got near the house to blow up my antique bed. It's been in the family for generations. It's the only heirloom we have."
"It's a beautiful heirloom. It looks really comfy to sleep on and it's big enough for anything you want to do." Xander actually blushed so he let him go. "Let's start where I can help and then we'll move to physical destruction. That way they're miserable first. It's always better when they're miserable first." Xander huffed but nodded. "C'mon, you need more hacking lessons anyway." He heard Junior. "Want the baby? He can help. He should learn to love destroying things. That way he can follow in his daddy's footsteps." Xander went to get the baby and came back to sit with him and help him. Junior cuddled for as long as he could stand it. Then Xander had to turn him around to watch Jensen type.
Pooch walked in, glaring at Xander. "Why did you steal him this time?"
"It's keeping me from going to Pensacola and blowing the fuckers up," he said dryly.
"Oh-kay," he said, taking his son. "You can't blow them up. The FBI will protest." He walked his son off. "Let's change you, Junior." He changed his son and watched him head back to his favorite uncles. Jolene went to steal him.
"He does not need to know how to destroy people yet. Wait until he's talking in full sentences."
"Why? By then I'll have him able to hack," Jensen said dryly.
"His daddy's going to teach him engines. He'll follow in his daddy's footsteps."
Xander stole the baby back to cuddle. "I'll remind him skipping school like I did turned Ray Junior into GHS," he said dryly. "We're destroying fundamentalist idiots." He looked at Junior. "You can help us if you want. It's definitely guy work." The baby squealed and patted them, watching the code appear. Jolene took him back anyway, taking him home so she could close them in. "I guess we don't have a chaperone after all. That means we can be meaner, right?"
"Yup," Jensen agreed, sharing a smirk with Xander. "You're right, these guys are fucking morons." He went back to it. Xander was helping where he could. He'd get Xander up to hacking on his own soon. He wasn't bad so far. "Oh, fuck you, bastard," Jensen muttered.
Xander snickered. "That's an agent, Jen."
"Then I take it back, unfuck you," he complained. They kept going until that whole group was in trouble with everyone and all their files were handed over while all their money went to gay charities that helped teenagers. That was Xander's help. The agent that was trying to stop them complained but Xander shot him down and told him where it was going. Then he told the guy to fuck off, they had tried to kill him twice and it was this or he was going to repay the favor. Since he was better than all of them combined... He let it trail off and went back to it.
Jensen snickered. "You and me, we could do make them beg for God to save them."
"I think we should turn them on first and then make them beg for God to come fuck them in that special gay way," Xander said. Jensen kissed him, getting a grin back. "Thanks."
"Welcome." They finished up and the agent was moaning again but oh well.
Clay walked in and stared at them. "For some reason I got called by Homeland Security telling me to calm you two down."
"Yay," Xander said, shrugging. Clay smacked him on the head. Xander swatted him back, glaring. "They broke into the backup house and tried to bomb my bed last night."
"It's a family heirloom, been in his family since the middle ages," Jensen told him.
"Which is nice and it's a sweet bed, but stop it."
"Too late," Xander said with a grin then cackled. "Pity."
"Jensen, aren't you supposed to stop him," Clay asked.
"No. Not this time."
Clay huffed. "Boys, stop it."
"Fuck no." Xander stared at him. "I can go visit on purpose."
"No, you can't."
"Yeah, I can."
"No, you can't," Clay ordered. He knocked the kid out before he could fight. He stared Jensen down. "Teach him how to mind commands from me, Horatio, and his spouses."
"Do I?" Jensen asked.
"Sometimes. Make him do it more often than you do."
"I can't change him that much, Clay." He smirked. "But we did a lot of very good work stopping that stupid group of moron fuckers."
Clay sighed, shaking his head as he walked off. "Just calm him down and explain listening to *good* command orders. Horatio said so too."
"Yup, whatever," Jensen said, going back to making people miserable. They were funded by other groups so he had more fun to do. He did take Xander to put him on his bed then came back to do some more work. Clay walked in and cut his internet connector cord then walked off. "Hey!" Jensen called, switching it to his laptop. Not like he didn't have wifi up. He got done right before Cougar walked in and took the laptop from him, and all the others, before walking off. "Fine, Xander and I are going to go up there, make out to make them admit that they're secretly gay and want us."
Cougar shot him with a dart and put him into bed beside Xander. They curled up together. Cougar locked them into the bedroom. He had external locks on the windows to keep Jensen from huffing off. Today they'd keep both of them from going. Cougar locked the main door too, going to report to Clay. "They want to make them admit they're secretly gay by making out."
Clay nodded. "I'm sure they could. I'm just glad Sanders is in DC again so he can't join in." He finished his bottle of water. "Horatio's livid too. He thinks Xander scared them too much."
Cougar shook his head. "No. Just right." He left, going to talk to people in the poker circuit.
Fu stared at him. "What are you doing here? Go stop Xander." Cougar gave him a pointed look. "Jensen is?" He nodded. "But that means they'll destroy more things."
"Too late," Wade said dryly from his seat eating lunch. "Did you knock him out?" Cougar nodded. "Good! I couldn't. He shook off the sedative. Anya was about to ask for a favor to call vengeance down on them." He ate another bite. "Are the agents going to try to stomp on them?" Cougar shrugged. "I'll make sure they can't piss off anyone else."
Don walked in and glared at Fu. "Whoever else helped, I'd agree with the suicide note option after they paid him."
"I've spread around to talk to the Lieutenant, Detective."
Don snorted. "Yeah, he tried to calm me down too. Pity." He walked off. "Wade!"
Don came back. "I'm going to destroy the dirty agents helping them." He stared at him. Wade finished stuffing his mouth and followed him out.
Cougar shook his head. Fu looked at him. "Try to calm him down?"
"I do. Both of them. Doesn't always work."
"Figures since Jensen's like Xander's smarter brother." He walked into the back to call around. They really had to stop that group before Xander finished losing his temper.
Clay heard the rattle of Jensen's windows, going to stop them from leaving through the door. Jensen opened it and he stared, shaking his head. "Stay."
"I'm not a dog."
"So? Sit, stay, good hacker," he shot back, staring at him. Jensen groaned. Xander wasn't going to get out either. Clay had the dart gun. He used it on Xander when he stomped out. "Tough. Jensen, you're both grounded until the agents are done." He shut the door again and used his master key to lock it.
Jensen sat down to make a plan to get them back. They were taking all his fun away. He wanted to destroy this time. He was pouting because he couldn't destroy anything else.
Guess he had to help Xander the next time and play with him now.
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