Earth to Atlantis.

John looked up as Landry and Evan Lorne beamed into his office.  "Did I screw up enough that you're here to take me out?"

"No.   We have a wraith hive spotted about two light years out, Colonel," Landry said.

John nodded.  "Are we launching Atlantis today?"

"Yes," Evan said.  "Estimates say it'll be here by the end of the week."

"Do you need me to launch it?"

"Yes," Evan said.

"Okay.  Xander!" he bellowed.  "Chuck!"  They both came running.  "Wraith ships were spotted.  It'll be here by the end of week."

"Go, good luck," Xander ordered.  He walked out.  He made a few calls then went to the Press Room.  Two Senators, the Speaker of the House, and the head of the Secret Service met him there.  "C'mon."  He walked in.  "People.  Sit and shut it."  He looked around the room.  The others walked in.  "Today, we have been notified that something we have been training for has occurred."  He looked at the senators and others.  "General Landry has reported that a single wraith hive is near our solar system."

The senators stiffened and one nodded.  "For that incident, John Sheppard is the only one that can fly Atlantis."  Xander looked at the press people.  "He is leaving tonight to defend us all.  I, along with all of you I'm sure, wish him good luck and a safe return."  He looked at the higher ups again.  "As of this moment, he is unable to do his duties until he can return.  That should be by next Monday."  He looked at the head of the Secret Service.  "I'm authorizing you to go to the standby stage of the evacuation procedures you and General O'Neill built."

"Can't O'Neill go to the ship?" one reporter asked.

Xander looked at her.  "We have a defense chair down here on earth and that is General O'Neill's position.  It's in a classified location.  You guys couldn't get there to distract him anyway but you definitely won't be upsetting him right now."  He looked at the slayer that walked in.  "Slayer Rona, please pass back the word to all the slayers to be on alert in case something unethical decides to take advantage of this attack, or God forbid, we have one that manages to get through.  Wraith aren't human and slayers are able to deal with them."

"Yes, Xander.  We have plans for that."  He nodded.  She left.

Xander looked at the rest of them.  "We all wish him a safe return, I know we do.  I'm going to be here, in public, doing whatever I need to do to make sure we're all protected."

"Sir, if you have to get out of public, you'll have to move fast," the head of the Secret Service said.

Xander nodded.  "I'm aware of that.  I know it would be precautionary because I know John won't let anything happen to any of us."  He looked around.  "So, don't cause a panic.  Don't worry overly much.  Just be aware that things are going to be tense for the next week.  Atlantis being in space means that they won't get near this solar system at all."  They nodded and started to call their news desks.  "Again, do not cause a panic, people.  We don't need that."  He walked off.  He looked at the Senators.  "Are we clear?"

"Yes, sir.  When?" the Speaker of the House asked.

"End of the week."

"So he'll probably be back and not in a good mood, or we'll be hearing he's in the infirmary on base for a few days," he decided.  They left to brief their people.

The head of the Secret Service looked at him.  "We might have to cut your guard to get all higher ups out of harm's way."

"Agreed.  If I have to, I can call in a favor or handle myself."  He nodded and walked off to call his people in for a meeting.  Xander took a deep breath and went to look at John.  "You'd better come back or my asskicking will seem unpleasant compared to the wraith feeding I saw."

John smiled and gave him a hug.  "Good job.  Hold steady, Xander."

"Come home soon, John.  They'll probably panic a lot, you know that."  He nodded and they beamed out, Chuck going with them since he was the best at helping Atlantis.

Xander looked around then started calling other world leaders.  "It's Xander Harris," he said.  "We have a world-wide emergency."  He got put through to the PM of England.  "It's Xander."  He sat down behind the big desk.  "No, there was a wraith ship spotted on the edge of the solar system.  John's left to Atlantis.  Make sure we don't have a panic.  They shouldn't be able to land.  They've fought it for years."

He nodded.  "We need a contact list.  Who are you willing to get so everyone hears?"  He made his own list, crossing out a few.  "Okay, I'll take those on mine.  You get Russia first to get their allies?"  He smiled.  "Thank you."  He hung up and called the French.  "It's Vice President Xander Harris.  I need to talk to your President.  Now.  As in it's an emergency.  Yes," he sighed.  "You mean like the wraith?"  He got put through.  "On the edge of the solar system.  We're already on it, but ..."

He listened.  "No, John's on Atlantis.  That's his spot.  O'Neill has the planetary chair.  We'll be safe but we still need to be on standby.  Without causing a panic.  Yes I have.  So our people could go on alert."  He listened to him complain.  "I have to call ten other world leaders in the next hour."

He heard the spluttering.  "That's why I'm calling you," he said bluntly.  "So you know that it's a possible massive threat to your people and you can take steps to protect your people.  Yeah."  He smiled.  "Exactly.  They're on my list, China and India are on the English PM's list."  He made a note of who he was calling.  "Please.  Thank you."  He hung up.  This was going to be a long week.


In Colorado, Chris watched the news briefing and nodded.  "Guys, the wraith are close.  Get Travis to find out where we're helping the city."  Buck ran up to talk to him.  The others gathered to watch the news.  AD Travis walked in.  "Where are we stationed to help the city not panic?"

"I need most of you here.  One of you needs to go ride herd on the VP because all his are off gathering the other important people."

Chris looked around.  "Buck."  He nodded and went to grab things so he could fly to DC.  "The rest of us?"

Travis pointed at a map of the city.  "Chris, you're in charge of this section.  Vin and you guys are known in Purgatorio.  Keep it from becoming a riot."  Chris and Vin nodded.   "You have these two precincts as yours."  He tapped them.  "Go today to coordinate how you want to deploy."

"Understood.  Boys."  They walked out together, heading down to the police stations to get their commanders into the talk.  Purgatorio was the bad section of town and they had to keep it calm.  The rich wouldn't riot, they'd hide.  The poor would panic and riot.

Travis went to tell the city council who was assigned where to help.  The FBI was doing the same thing but they'd leave Chris alone since Chris couldn't stand them.  The people would listen to Vin so they'd have less problems.


Dawn watched the news and looked over.  "Dean!"  He came jogging over to listen over her shoulder.  "We should warn the others.  The slayers will be called if they get close enough since they're not human."

"I'll start the calling tree," he promised, finding his cellphone to start that.  "Bobby, Dean.  Get as many of us on a conference call as you can or have them watch the news.  Yeah, wraith aren't human.  They're human feeders, off energy from what we got told."  He listened, starting to pace.  "The slayers are probably going on alert in case one makes it down here."

"LA's going to have riots," Sam said quietly.  "The rich will flee, the poor people will riot and loot."

Dean repeated that, nodding.  "Please do.  Yeah, let's put everyone on paranoid bastard status.  Sounded like the end of the week?"  Dawn was texting and nodded at that.  "If you need us elsewhere, you let us know."  He hung up.  "We good?"

"I've already talked to the detective we liaison with.  She said she'd keep us in mind in case the demon community got frisky.  We're to go warn them tonight."  They nodded and grabbed her jacket, walking out with them.  Gunn's present girlfriend and Connor could watch the babies.  Dawn walked into the most popular bar.  Dean and Sam were picking other places.  "Listen up!" she shouted.  Everyone went silent.  "They just announced wraith are near our solar system."  She looked around.  "They're launching Atlantis today."  That got a few nods.  "We're expecting panicking."

"We won't worry, but if one gets here even the paranoid hunters will have help," one demon assured her.  He was on the city council.

"Dean and Sam are at other spots warning them.  Pass it around.  If LA gets a problem, I'm hoping it's from the humans instead.  We know someone's dumb enough to try to use this to make a move."  That got a few snickers.  "We're just as worried so let's stay calm?"

Everyone nodded.  "We will do what we can," the bar's owner assured her.  "Are your children being sent to Cleveland?"

"No.  If we have to, there's a safe spot for them to hide."  He nodded with a smile for her.  "So let's make sure everyone hears, no one has any bright ideas, and that if the humans do start to riot that we either help calm it down or hide from them?"  Everyone nodded.  "Thanks, guys."  She left, going to another spot.

The city council member looked around.  "She's right.  We're going to stay calm and out of it.  Those of us who have apocalypse duties or arsenals give them a look over today or tomorrow.  Make sure we have food stores for at least a week.  If the wraith make it here, it won't take that long to eat them.  Remember, they are energy feeding creatures from what we've heard thanks to the briefing the slayers got.  They feed with their hands."

Everyone nodded, looking pissed off.  "I'm not sure if they can eat us or not.  Gorm never ran into one so he couldn't tell us.  Just make sure LA stays safe and the horde of slayers don't have to quit being scared to come here."  They broke off to talk to the others, go grocery shopping, or check weapons.

 This might be very bad.


The day the reports from Landry said they were in attack distance, Xander felt an itch.  He wasn't sure why.  It was getting bad.  He was scratching his arms.  Buck was giving him a worried look.  "I don't know," he said quietly.  Finally it was driving him nuts.  He concentrated on his mind, working himself down into the meditative state.  That's when the beam hit him.

He opened his eyes in a water-logged room, wondering how he was breathing.  He touched his neck to find gills, freaking out slightly.  He didn't want to be the first and only fishy VP!  The water slowly lowered around him and he gasped a few times until his body remembered to breathe like a human.  He panted, looking around.  "Shit, what're you?" he demanded.  A light lit up in the hallway.

"Am I supposed to follow it?"  Atlantis was alive, John had said so.  This looked suspiciously alien to him.  The light blinked so he followed.  It led him to a room with a huge, odd looking chair.  "Thank God," he whispered, sitting down.  The city's status ran through his mind.  "Okay, baby girl.  We can go.  What's your name?"  The name didn't come but he could go.  He concentrated.  He was a geek, he knew physics.  "I need Andrew from Cleveland.  He's at the slayer house."  He pictured him.  He appeared and squeaked.  "Andrew, this is a city like Atlantis.  I need a geek."

"Sure, Xander."  He patted the wall.  "We'll figure out which one you are later."

"Andrew, go do the physics stuff."  He jogged off to find it with the city's help.  Xander ran over the flight capabilities.  He called.  "Buck, I'm fine.  There's another city.  It brought me."  He hung up.  The ship lurched.  He dropped down into his mind.  That made it easier to interface.  "Okay," he agreed.  "Let's go.  We have wraith coming, dear."  The city lurched and he found out why.   "Andrew, retract the landing stuff.  Make us ready for space flight."  He waited until it all cleared.  One more lurch then they lifted off.

The rest of the water drained out.  "Hey, we must be Brigadoon."  The ship flashed.  "Nice to meet you too, dear.  Let's go up by Atlantis.  Do we have weapons?  Show me how to use 'em."  He got that flashed into his head.  "Okay, we can do that."  He relaxed into the chair, letting it take him over for now.  They uncloaked next to Atlantis.  He heard the panicked calls.  "Guys, it said its name is Brigadoon."

"Xander?" John demanded.

"Yup, and Andrew.  I bummed from Cleveland.  He's the biggest geek I know.  I'm told we have weapons and are ready."  He took a deep breath and calmed himself.  "I'm seeing warning dots.  Ah!  Okay," he said once the ship explained it.  "Treat me like I'm really young please, dear.  That way I can handle it."  He let the city take him over and it was easier.  He did what she wanted and it was going to help.

On Atlantis, John was ready to bang his head against something.  "Rodney, that city is Brigadoon.  Xander said it has weapons.  He borrowed Andrew from Cleveland.  Make sure they're ready."  He heard the swearing in Czech.  "Radek, go be their engineer!  Now!  Take O'Neill with you!"  Jon O'Neill went with the engineering team and the others to guard the city.

Andrew smiled when people ran in.  "I've calibrated the shield so it'll hold out energy weapons based on the strength that we know about in Star Trek, because you didn't tell us how strong theirs were.  I have this set up here," he said with a point.  "And I'm pretty sure that's a power bar."

Radek looked at him.  "At least you are not helpless geek.  Monitor his health.  City could ruin him."

"I've got that," O'Neill ordered.  "Guy, whoever you are...."

"Andrew.  I'm the Council's housemother and a bigger geek than Xander."

"Okay then," he decided.  "C'mon, we need a flight officer."  He took him to teach him how to monitor things.  Xander had the defense well in hand.  Jon heard the squeak and went to look.  "What?"

"We have another city ship."

"City ship, identify yourself please," Jon called.

"I believe she said her name was Archaic.  I don't know if that's the name of her people or her," Ezra said.  "I have no idea what I'm seeing beyond the fact she's showing me how to use the weapons."

"Okay," Jon said.  "Radek, I need two of you."  The city stole Andrew.  "And me."  He went to gather them and they got beamed over from the ship.  "For the record, who're you?" Jon asked the guy in the chair.

"Ezra Standish.  ATF out of Denver."

"Okay," he agreed.

"You guarded Xander," Andrew said with a grin.  "Made him quit wearing sloppy shirts."  He went to take back up his job.  The others headed to the engineering section.  Jon went to help Ezra since he had no idea what he was doing.  Jon could be the pinch hitter for whichever chair needed him.


John, after the battle was done, was ready to pass out.   He sat the chair up.  "We blocked communication?"

"We did," Rodney said.  Keller was checking him over.  "The other cities?"

"Ezra's lost the shield but everyone got beamed to the other one."  He blinked at Keller.  "Xander?"

"They're fine.  Lam's over there," she said quietly.  She helped him up.  "Let's get you a long meal in the infirmary, Colonel."  She walked him that way with Rodney's help.  She called to check on Lam's patients.  "How are they?"  She smiled.  "Xander's fussing with the city.  He wants a twinkie.  Ezra agreed with him.  So did Andrew.  Jon's groaning in misery but they can handle it."

"I'll get on the other cities to check them over," Rodney assured John.  He got teams moving to do that.  He went to join one, heading to the non-working city once he had on a space suit.  He thought at the city, making it hum.  "Low power?" he guessed, heading for that part of the city.  No, it had two full ZPM's.  They hadn't switched when necessary.  He got that fixed and the shield flowed up around them.  He broke the seal on his hood, taking a careful breath.  "Good."  He ran a diagnostic and it was showing some strain.  "We'll land you in a minute," he assured her.  Jon got beamed over.  "We need to land her.  She's got structural problems."

"Going to the chair," he promised.  "Where are we landing her?"

"By Sunnydale.  It's clear, no people that could get splashed if you're not delicate.  It's on the ocean."  He followed him to the chair room to run the diagnostic in there.  It was working well.  "What's her name?"

"Archaic, like her people."  He frowned, concentrating on the landing.  "McKay, you're making it wobbly."  He quit checking the system he was on.  Jon landed the city and it settled in, extending the docks and lowering the shields.  "No, let's keep the shields up so no one can board you yet without our permission."  The shield changed.  Landry got beamed in.  "General."

"O'Neill."  He looked around.  "Mythical people that lived in the Utah badlands and canyons pre-Anasazi according to Doctor Jackson."

"I think she was built after Atlantis," Rodney said.  He finished up.  "We're looking good but we have some structural issues."  He stood up.  "The other is Brigadoon."

"Like the musical?" Landry asked.  They nodded.  "Interesting."  They got beamed over there.  Xander was being squealed at by Andrew.  Ezra was calming himself down.  Xander was too.  Landry coughed.  "Mr. Wells."  He calmed down.  "Calm down, go debrief with Miss Rosenburg."  He pointed.  Andrew bounced over to talk to her.  She babbled back.  "Gentlemen," he said.

Xander looked at him.  "No clue, General.  I was in the White House.  I was handling things.  Then I started to itch."

Ezra nodded.  "As did I.  It was a pernicious itch all over.  Then there was a flash of light."

"Which was the beaming," Xander said.  He looked at Carolyn Lam.  "We have to talk anyway since somehow I ended up with gills for a few minutes.  She was under water.  I nearly freaked out for a few hours."

She checked his neck.  "They're closed," she promised with a smile.  "We can work on it and see why, Xander.  Calm down."  He gave her a dirty look.  "Fine, try to calm down."  She checked Ezra over.  "You'll be fine.  Nothing more than a bit of a high pulse rate."

"Yes, the shield dropping nearly caused my demise."  He looked at Xander, who gave him a hug.  "Thank you, Xander."

"Welcome, Ezra, and you did good."  He let him go, looking at the doctors.  "We need to land her."

"She goes near DC for right now," John said as he appeared.  "Archaic landed by Sunnydale so there was no danger to any group of people."  He got into the chair and got her to land near DC.  He noted where she should be but that was fine with him.  They'd investigate it to make sure it was all right first.  He put the shield up and settled in to let Rodney run diagnostics here.  He went back to Atlantis to land her.

They all went back to the White House, beaming onto the lawn.  A few of the agents cheered.  They walked inside, John smiling and waving.  "Xander, smile and wave," he muttered.  Xander waved, looking exhausted.  He fell asleep as soon as he sat down.  Ezra wasn't much better.  "All right," John decided.  He went to the waiting press people.  He smiled at the cheers and claps.  "Thank you."

"Sir, there were other cities!"

"Yes.  Thanks to the wraith being so close, we found out that there were a few cities down here waiting on us to fight them."

"Was the VP in one?"

"Yes.  He got beamed by the city itself to help it launch and help us fight.  He was in Brigadoon actually."  That got silence.  He smiled.  "The other I'm told is called Archaic.  General Landry's people are going over them to make sure they're going to be fine, don't pose a hazard to people, are able to be safely studied.  We'll let other scientists study them as we find them safe."

"Sir, was Brigadoon near England?"

"Scotland, not England.  I know there's a small base there for her to interface with.  We'll be helping them check it over before we let her go back there.  She was underwater for a while."

"Is the VP all right?"

"He fell asleep in a chair once he sat down."

"Who was flying the other city?" another reporter asked.

"That's classified for now.  Until we debrief him and all that."  He pointed.  "You look anxious.  What?"

"Sir, the wraith?  Are they gone?"

"We blocked communications so they couldn't tell the rest of them we're here.  We blew them into bits and pieces.  Two soldiers lost their lives defending Atlantis when a wraith dart managed to land.   We blew them apart too."  They all smiled.  "As of right now, the threat is over with.  We'll keep watching for other threats but we think this was an isolated hive that was out exploring.  We'll be watching the rest of this galaxy for more incursions."
He stepped back.  "Relax, it's over with, people.  Thank you to all who kept things calm and stood ready to help us if necessary."  He left, going back to his office.  Ezra was snoring slightly.  Xander had shifted toward his snoring in his chair.   He smiled at Landry.  "Usually Xander bounces around here."

"I've seen him."  Jack O'Neill got beamed in.  "Your post good?"

"It's fine."  He smiled.  "They didn't do bad."

John nodded.  "Not bad at all."  He looked at Andrew.  "How did you get there?"


"Figures," John agreed.

Jack snickered.  "You knew anyway."

"Yup."  He beamed.  "It was super cool.  Nearly as good as the birthday present of helping teach the Jedi way."

Landry looked at him.  "You can't talk about it."


"Fine," he sighed, shaking his head.

"He's used to PhD geeks instead of regular geeks, Andrew," John said.  Andrew grinned.  "Jack, is it back on standby?"


"Good."  His phone rang.  He answered it.  "Sheppard."  He listened.  "No, we'll need to check the outpost out first, make sure it won't explode or anything.  Then we'll return it to the dock, Prime Minister Cole.  Probably a few days.  We need to check the city over, do diagnostics, all that to make sure it's safe.  Then we'll check the outpost and put it back.  Yes, that would be a good person to put in charge of it.  He was formerly SGC.  He knew about Atlantis.  We'll be fine with that.

"Let us scan it to compare against Atlantis' systems to make sure nothing's going wrong.  Of course.  Give me a week and I'll give you a report on what we know about."  He smiled.  "That's fine.  After we have these three looked over, we'll see if any other cities are down here.  Yes, Prime Minster Cole, they're all tiny pieces floating toward the sun."  He nodded again.  "That was what I wanted him to do without creating a panic.  Which was what he did.  Thank you.  Be safe and it'll be fine now."  He hung up and looked at Landry.

"I'll have the engineering teams go over both of them starting tonight and with that one."

"Thank you.  There's an outpost."

"Of course.  Who did they want?"

"Serens.  Rodney ranted that he had retired a few times."

"He was a good man from what I remember.  He left when O'Neill was in command."

Jack nodded.  "He wasn't bad.   He and Carter do not get along though.  He's a bit 'women don't belong in science or the military'."  He sat down.  "Did we fix things so we weren't panicking anymore?"

"Yeah, I announced I was back."  The Speaker of the House walked into his office.  "Good afternoon."

He smirked.  "People worried that him disappearing meant that the demons were going to try something too."

"No, the City of Brigadoon called him."

"Where is it?"

"Off our coast."  He nodded.  "I'm back and capable of returning to duty as of now."

"Thank you, Mr. President.  He didn't do too badly."

John smiled.  "Or in the battle.  Even though he had no idea how to do that beyond being a geek."

He looked.  "It's nice his boyfriend was helping."

"Ezra was in command of the other city but a malfunction happened that made it lose its shield," Jack told him.

"Oh!"  He blinked a few times.

"Beyond that, they're not dating," John told him.  "Or so they tell me."  He nodded and left.  John took a deep breath, looking at the napping people.  "Someone check on Xander's dogs."

"They're here, sir," one of the guards reported.  "That way they were protected and able to be walked."  He looked.  "Should I call Larabee?"

"I will."  The guard nodded, closing the door after himself.  A few minutes later the dogs rushed in to be petted by them all.

Landry smiled, petting one of them.  "They're good dogs."

"They're excellent dogs."  He called Chris's phone.  "It's John Sheppard.  Ezra is here and napping.  He's fine.   No, the city did just fine, it beamed him out before he got hurt, it's all right.  Napping.  Xander too," he assured him.  "I could use one myself but I'm sure I've got Generals stomping my way.  Thanks, Chris."  He hung up.

The dogs growled at the generals stomping in.  "Down," one snarled.

"Are you snaked?" Jack asked, sounding fondly tolerant.

"No, sir."  He looked at him.  "O'Neill.  Sheppard."  He looked at the snoring ones.  "They got worn out?"

"The chair can wear you out when you're not used to it," John said.  He smiled.  "They're in tiny specks heading for a sun."

"Good," the general in the lead said.  "Where are the cities?"

"Archaic is by Sunnydale so landing wouldn't splash anyone living near there.  The other is temporarily by DC."

"Why temporarily?" the other general asked.  The dog was still growling at him.  "What, mutt?"

"That's Xander's dog, General, I wouldn't be that aggressive," Jack noted.  "Pappa."  He came over to get petted.  "The city has an outpost in the UK somewhere.  We agreed it would be fine to put it under former SG people over there.  They're not going to attack us."

"So we're just handing over such problematic technology?" he demanded.  The other dog growled.  He glared.

Xander blinked at him.  "Glare at my dog again and I'm kicking your fucking white ass, General Stick-Up-His-Ass."  He backed down.  "Thank you.  I'm trying to fucking nap after saving the planet."  He straightened up, looking at his dogs.  "Good puppies."  They panted and let him pet them.  "Good puppies."  He got them calmed down then looked at them.  "She belongs there.  They're allies.  Why are you fussing?"

"They could use it against us," the nicer general said.

"England?" he asked dryly.  "Really?  Not like it's Iran."  The general huffed.  "Also, it's going under people we trust."

"This should be a Pentagon decision.  The SGC is a military asset," the general in the lead said.

"We have more civilians than military people," Landry said.

"Hank, do you want to keep your job?" that general asked.

Xander muttered something and took off his necklace, looking at him.  The man gaped, backing up against a wall.  "Knew it.  I knew you weren't a demon before so drop it."  The shape changers both dropped it.  "Where are they?"

"There are harmful demons there that could be a problem."

"We have former SGC people there," John said.  "They'll be over it.  I wouldn't worry and if I catch you impersonating another being ever again I'll slay you myself."  They nodded and fled.  He looked at Xander.  "Thank you."

"Welcome."  He smirked.  "Let me get him to the house."  He stood up and stretched, wincing at the cracks and pops.  "Ow, but better."  He looked at Jack.  "Need me?"

"No, Xander.  Good job."

"Don't give me a medal.  I don't want his job."  He nudged Ezra.  "Let's go home."  He nodded.  "You can have the newly decorated guest room."  He got up and stretched as well.  They walked out with the dogs.  "Guys, heading home," Xander ordered.  "Come drive."   One of the guards helped them into the official SUV with the dogs and drove them home.  There were already press people out front.  The guards cleared them an entrance and they wobbled in to nap.  The dogs spent some time with Ezra then went to sleep with their human.  They'd get up sometime tomorrow.


John stood up to make the speech everyone wanted him to make.  Xander blinked at his tv starting itself.  He moaned and grunted inquisitively.  No one else was in there though.  "My tv is possessed," he told the dog, who licked his face.  "I love you too."  He laid there watching it.  John looked poised, calm, and well rested.  Xander probably looked like hell.  He felt like hell.  The other dog padded in with Ezra following carrying two cups.  "Mm, thank you, Ezra."  He took his own.

Ezra sat down to watch the news conference.  "He looks much more healthy than I feel."

"Me too," Xander agreed, sipping his coffee.  They settled in to watch him calm people down.  "I told them not to panic."

"Most of them I know didn't.  Unless they did it after we got beamed or whatever."  Xander nodded.  The dogs barked so they petted them.  "This is a good way to wake up."

"Should've went to the other place."

"Other place?"

"I bought somewhere I'm fixing up."

"Hmm.  Good."  He sipped his coffee.  "How are the horses?"

"We had to move them.  John turned them in to the Humane Society people."  He yawned, glaring when the dog tried to lick his tongue.  "Thank you."  He petted him.  The mother dog was patting Ezra's leg while she got petted.  Xander finished his coffee and settled in again.  "I wonder how many reporters are out there now?"

Ezra lifted up some to look.  "There's a good many."  He relaxed again.  John was calming everyone down.  He was giving a good performance.  Ezra looked over at the first snore, shaking his head but smiling.  He laughed when John said Xander said not to reward him but he was going to do it anyway, groaning when he was noted as well.  "That is not necessary," he complained quietly, petting the dog.  She was more than happy to be petted.  He heard someone on the stairs.  "Who's there?"

"Me," JD said, coming in.  "Are you all right?  You caused Chris to nearly die from the heart attack this time, Ezra.  He told me if you're all right I'm to paddle you until you beg for your life."  He smiled.  "Awww."

"I brought him coffee.  It wasn't enough."  He yawned.  "I'll go back to my own bed in a moment."

"I thought this was your bed."  Ezra gave him a dirty look.  JD smiled.  "We all agreed, it's cute how you make him shop."

Ezra looked at the dog.  "If I ask, would you bite him for me please?"  She growled at the human.  JD snickered and petted her.  "Go away, JD."

"Sure, I'll make lunch for when you guys get up."  He bounced off.  The dogs followed since he had said the word 'lunch'.  Ezra shook his head, getting up with a small moan and going back to his bed.  He was still exhausted.

Downstairs JD was babbling at Chris while feeding the dogs.  "No, they were watching the news conference.  Ezra swears he's sleeping in another room, Chris.  Even shuffled off to go sleep in another bed when I mentioned it."  He smiled at the dogs.  "Good dogs."  He petted them both, made sure the back door was open for them to go out and use the yard, then went to check the front gate.

"No, we're covered in reporters," he said.  "There's no way we can sneak them out later.  I don't know, he hasn't called yet."  He walked into the office.  "Let me check the caller ID.  "Hmm.  Colorado area code called twice.  One from New York, one from the local area code.  And the White House."  He called that one back, putting it on his other ear.

"It's ATF Agent Dunn.  I'm here with the VP and Agent Standish.  No, we're covered in reporters.  They're both asleep, still worn out from whatever.  Yeah, I'm here feeding the dogs.  Thanks but we should be fine as long as the gate gets uncovered.  Yup, that's me.  No, I have Larabee on the other line."  He listened then switched.  "Chris, the comm officer at the White House said that Xander's guards are scared of him again.  Sure, I'll tell Ezra that and be back in a bit.  Well, the President did say something about rewarding them," he said dryly.

"Thanks, Chris."  He hung up.  "Chris said he'd leave Ezra here for a bit and I have to stay until they're ready to wake up again.   Yeah, list me here please.  No, I haven't seen the housekeeper and I doubt she could get through the reporters."  He looked outside.  "We have a gate breech with a reporter and the alarm didn't go off.  Because one's taking pictures in the window."

He hung up and went out to arrest that one for trespassing.  The dogs came out to growl and snap at the others.  Most of the reporters ran off.  JD got them all arrested and found the gate guards had switched off without warning and had left a single, overloaded one there.  "What happened to the alarm?" he demanded.

"I don't have the code, sir."

"When did you graduate the academy!" he demanded.  He knew he was young but this guy was making him feel ancient.

"My supervising agent said to man the gate house, sir."

"Uh-huh."  He walked in and turned on the alarm.  It went off.  "I'm going to arrest everyone who crossed the gate for terrorizing the Vice President and endangering his safety!" he shouted over the intercom.   "Unless the reporters leave NOW!"  A few ran off.  A few more didn't so he went to arrest them.  Then he called the comm officer to chew him a new one and then Chris to confess he had lost his temper and chewed someone a new one.


John walked back into his office, looking at the agent in there.  "You look sheepish, why?"

"I didn't know Dunn had a temper, sir."

"He probably does.  Why?"

"Apparently the Vice President's house was left partially unguarded."

John stared at him.  "If you're telling me your agents cut and run, I'd fucking fix it today," he said firmly.  "Before I wade in and start kicking asses."  He nodded and went to do that.  He called Xander's house, getting a dog barking.  "Hey, Momma.  Get JD?"  The dog's bark moved away from the phone.  He held up a hand when his chief of staff came in.  "JD, how bad is it?"  He listened.  "I'll fucking kill someone, JD.  Can you handle it?  Thank you.  Yeah, soon."  He hung up.  "Chuck, get my head of security in here NOW."  He looked at his chief of staff.  "The guards left one very new guard without the gate code on his fence."

"Excuse me?"


"There's no way.  I'll get the director here for you to chew on, sir.  Um, you need a new director of Homeland."

"Get me candidates."  He handed over the list.  "Sorted by?"

"Preference of others.  He quit earlier because he couldn't handle this level of threat."

"It's not his job.  It's Homeworld's job."

"He quit on air."

"Pity for him."  His head of Security walked in.  "How dare you leave the Vice President uncovered!  He can't move right now!  I spent three damn days after my first battle from a chair in the infirmary napping off the way it sucked my strength!  You left him so uncovered they had a gate breach with a newbie agent, who didn't have the gate code!"  His head of security flinched.  "I don't give a damn what they *feel* like.  If they're scared of him, whatever!  You do the fucking job or you're fucking fired and I'll make sure your director blackballs all of them and you!"

"Yes, sir," he said firmly, going to chew on the agents.  John would kill him in a sparring match.  He could make his way through all the guards and not really break a sweat.  There was no way he was going to piss him off this year.

John glared at his chief of staff when he hung up.  "And?"

"Within an hour, sir, and I told him why.  He threw something in his office while on the phone with me."  He smiled.  "He said to tell you he's very sorry and if you feel better by kicking his ass so be it.  He did suggest that they move Mr. Harris and everything to the apartment we aren't supposed to know he has."

"You can't do that with how many people are outside his gate."  He looked over at his doorway.  "The ship's not in range to beam him out."

"That's fine, sir."  He went to warn the others that John was now in a bad mood and they were all going to get a foot up their asses.

John glared at the director as he walked in.  "Did it get fixed?"

"Yes, sir, there's now six agents there helping Agent Dunn arrest reporters, getting the too-new agent on the gate calmed back down because he was nearly panicking, and they've secured the house.  The dogs nearly bit one but otherwise they're fine and know not to wake him up."

"Good.  The others?"

"They're already fired if they haven't quit.  A few did quit.  I don't know why yet but I'll be finding out and they will not be getting any more jobs in this government."  John nodded at that, smiling some.  "Are they coming back, sir?"

"I don't think so."

"It might do him good.  He has moped from my reports."

"They're not dating."

"So?  He's still moping."  He gave him a look.  "By the way, the person you hired to take care of the horses did do a good job.  Companion has had a vet visit while you were gone because somehow she got some fleas.  Yours doesn't."  John nodded at that, still smiling.  "We made sure the vet was a good one that wouldn't hurt either creature.  The groundskeeper was more than happy to walk his dogs for him as well."

"Good.  Thank you for handling that."

"Sir, that's a bad precedent to set.  I don't want that situation ever again.  I'm going to beat them like you would in a sparring match, sir."  He nodded and left him alone.

John sat down to look up the candidates for Homeland Security.  This was going to be a bad time to appoint anyone non-military and non-aggressive.


Xander blinked when the light went off around him.  "What the fuck," he muttered.  He hugged the warm, soft thing next to him.  "Hmm, nice dog."  He fell back asleep.

JD leaned in, letting both dogs in.  They hopped up to nap around their human.  He went to check out the kitchen in this place Xander had been refinishing.  It was nicely done.  The bathroom was only half done but he had helped Chris fix the ranch a few times.  He got the bathroom working since it was only one pipe that wasn't connected.  The shower was almost sinful looking when he made sure it worked.  The toilet was nice.  The sink was pretty.  He went to check the other bedrooms.  They were nicely painted, very neutral.

The main bedroom was very good.  Large, large walk in closet.  Clearly an Ezra influence.  The bathroom in there was still looking rough.  He had no way of fixing that by himself right now.  He went to check out the kitchen.  It was nicely appropriated and he could get groceries for the next two days.  John said it'd take that long to work it out of their system.  There was a store on the corner.  He ran down there to get something.  The check-out girl asked him if he was new and he said he was a visiting agent, staying on someone's couch.  She smiled back when he did and he got to go back to the apartment.


Ezra finally woke up, grimacing at the taste in his mouth.  "I have been asleep much too long," he muttered.  He sat up but there was an insistent pressure to lay back down across his chest.  He looked at the arm, then at the man attached to it.  "Xander," he said quietly.  No answer.

JD leaned in with a smile.  "They beamed you to the apartment he's flipping.  The beaming landed you there."  He disappeared again.  "The main bathroom across the hallway is open; the attached one's not done yet."

"Thank you," he called.  He nudged Xander to get free.  No response.  He was clearly breathing but the boy never slept this deeply.  He leaned down.  "Can I be released to do my morning ablution?"

Xander smacked is lips and said something in another language.

Ezra smiled.  "What was that?"  He repeated it in another language.  Ezra understood that one.  "No, I won't run away and get into trouble.  Simply a shower, Xander."  He nodded and let him go, letting himself go deeper again.  Ezra got up and went to the bathroom JD had mentioned.  He moaned when he got into the shower.  That was a true definition of sin.

JD looked up at the moan, smiling at it.  "I think he likes the shower," he told the dogs.  They barked so he gave them a treat.  He went back to making them something soft to eat.  They had been asleep for over a day.  Ezra came out and looked around, frowning.  "I put your bag in the closet in there, Ez," he called.

"Thank you, John Daniel."  He went in to get dressed.  Xander was still asleep.  He had to smile, he looked so much younger and happier.   He leaned down next to his ear.  "It's time to get up, Xander."  Xander made kissy faces.  "Not until you're awake enough to shower.  I'm afraid you'll get mad at yourself."  He helped him up and across the hall, into the shower, and then went back to dressing himself.

Xander walked out of the shower, still half asleep.  He looked at Ezra.  "Mean."

"Why am I mean?" he asked with a smile.

"I was comfy."

"I know."  He patted him on the cheek.  Xander moved closer to cuddle him.  "You're getting me wet, Xander."


Ezra smirked.  "You can go back to bed if you desire."

"Bed lonely."

"I believe we decided not to do this," he said quietly.  He put the boy back down, not fighting when Xander kissed him.  He let him go slowly, petting him.  "Sleep, Xander."

"Not comfy."  He tried to pull Ezra down.  "C'mon," he whined.

"No, I need to eat something.  You rest some more and I'll see you soon."  He got the pouty face but at least the puppy eyes were closed.  He petted him some more, until he heard a snore.  "You never snore when you sleep with the dogs," he said dryly.  He went to change his shirt since he was wet.  Then he went to the kitchen.  "Food?"

"And coffee, Ez," he said happily.  He pointed.  "Is he awake?"

"Not yet."  He sat down to eat.  "You did a good job.  Thank you."

"Not a problem.   Few notes, Chris said you have to take the medal like everyone else.  You're cleared to stay here until then.  I'm here for the rest of the week.  Buck was pouting he'd have to do his own laundry."  Ezra snorted but sipped some coffee, staring at him.  "The head of Homeland just retired saying he couldn't handle that level of threat.  The director of the Secret Service came down on the former guards like a ton of hissing, butt kicking bricks.  We're not sure what's going on there."

Ezra nodded again.  "All right.  Where are we in the city?"

"About six blocks from your old place here."  He smiled.  "I'm told Xander bought it off seizure to update it and sell it."

"That makes sense.  It's a very nice looking apartment.  Three bedrooms?"

"Yup.  One's kinda tiny but good enough."  He took a sip of his own coffee.  "Store on the corner.  He still has to fix the bathroom in the master bedroom.  You clearly gave him bad closet ideas since it's the size of the smallest bedroom."  Ezra smirked a bit.  "The dogs are around here somewhere but John said he'd stop by later on and pick them up to walk them for us.  I took them out about an hour ago.  Small park up the street by a few blocks."

"Good neighborhood then," Ezra decided.  He ate another bite, listening for movement.  "Xander, come eat," he called.

Xander stumbled out pouting.  "You left.  I wasn't comfy."

"I know but I needed food and so do you.  JD made breakfast."  JD held out a plate with a grin.

Xander pouted.  "Comfy more important than food."

"Eat anyway," Ezra said.  "Then you can be comfy."  Xander sat down to listlessly eat his food.  JD gave him some soda so he was happier.  He was still tired at the end so he took the dogs back to bed.  Ezra called Chris to check in.  He could resist the call of the warm, comfortable bed calling him.  Chris had to repeat himself to get his attention.  "What?"  He nodded.  "I'm going back to sleep in a moment."

"The other beds don't have sheets," JD said with a grin.  Ezra glared.  "Not like he minded if you snored on him."

"Go sit in a corner, JD.  Mr. Larabee said so."  He pouted but went to the living room.  Ezra hung up and checked but had to settle for the large, warm, soft, comfortable master bedroom and the dogs.  Plus the warm one who shifted closer to cuddle.  It wasn't a bad nap after all.


Xander woke up not warm and comfy.  As a matter of fact, it felt pretty familiar.  He was sitting upright tied to a chair.  He realized this before he opened his eyes.  There was something seriously screwy going on apparently.  He blinked at his captors.  "Huh," he said.  "Truly stupid people.  I thought most of you got banished."

"You're only the Vice President, no one will care if you disappear for days," the man in front of him said.

"You mean besides my guards?"

"Your guards messed up the other day and didn't grab you when they could have done it easier.  Then all this unpleasantness would've been over with before you woke up, Mr. Harris."

Xander smirked.  "What makes you think you're getting anything from me?"

"Because you can't escape here."

Xander snorted.  "You don't know me very well."

"Your arms master said you're weak in that one area around your liver."

"No, not really."  He got hit with a pain stick, making him tense up but not do more than hiss.  "Well, that's a nice tingle."  He kicked at the guy, making him back off.  "What do you want, jerk off?  I'm busy today."

"Don't worry, your lover won't mind."

"He's not my boyfriend.  He's my guard.  Unfortunately JD apparently couldn't make a bed."  He stared at him.  "I'm waiting.  You're not being good hostage takers.  Your manners suck and your technique lacks style.  I mean, seriously.  Terrorists have better style."  He got hit with the pain stick again but he was ready for it this time.  He stared at the guy.

The agent laughed.  "That's a cute trick, Harris."

"Like I said, you're not worth the stress."

He leaned down.  "We'll see.  For right now we're going to take some blood."

"No you're not."

"Yes I am."

"No, you're not.  Willow?" he called.

"They're a bit busy.  And before you yell for the other one, she's up the hall."

"Her husband is going to kill your ass," he said bluntly.  "If her sister doesn't."

"He's off on a hunt."  He smirked.  "You're all alone."

"No, I'm not."  He stared at him.  "I'm never fully alone."  He looked to his side when he felt Cordelia fading in.  "Hi."

"Hi.  This is sucky."

"They have Dawn too."  The guy tried to hit her with the pain stick.  "If she was still alive she'd fuck you up for that."

"Kill Summers," he called.  "That ex of his showed up."

"Oh hell no!" she shouted.

Dawn blew out a wall and walked over.  "Me?"  She glowed green, staring at him.  "You poor, pathetic pissant."  She touched his head, freezing him.  "Hmm, NID."  He started to shake.  "You're going to regret ever touching me and mine."  She brought him with her to Buffy and Jack's house.  "This nice asshole has Xander hostage still."

Jack jumped up. "Excuse me?"  He grabbed the sheet to cover himself.

"He's NID.  That's a painful toy," she said taking the painstick from him.  "Cordelia's there, Buffy."

"Shit."  She dove for clothes, getting dressed and coming over to knock the guy out.  "Go get Xander."

She stared then looked up.  "I can't.  They have some sort of shield."

"Fucking NID," Jack muttered.  "Maybourne is getting my foot all the way up his ass."  He looked at her.  "Get as close as you can and help any agents."

She nodded and disappeared.  She was not a happy Key.

"She's going to destroy part of a state, sorry."  Buffy grabbed weapons and called.  "WILLOW!"  Willow appeared, sunscreen on her nose, in a modest bikini.  "NID took Xander hostage."

"Oh hell no!" she shouted and power started to flow to her.  "Where?"

"Dawn's supposed to be getting him."

She looked off to the west.  "She's checking on the babies.  She's heading there in a moment."  She tracked her.  "Cordelia's there yelling at Xander to please calm down.  He went hyena," she sighed.  "I can't through the shield."  She took them with her.

Jack watched the shield for a second.  "Get me McKay and one of his many laptops."  She snapped and he appeared, looking startled.  "They have Harris."

He looked then snorted.  "They're going to be destroyed then."

"Yes they will since they darted my daughter," Dawn said dryly.

Rodney gave her a dirty look.  "Don't start down that path."

"You don't fuck with me and mine, Rodney.  And I'm not like Willow before you protest."  She smirked.  "I don't need more power.  I can rip this realm apart without it."  She stared at the shield.  "What is that thing?"  She touched it and it zapped her.  A car was coming their way.  "Guys, idiot in charge.  He's not an agent."

"That's Maybourne.  Buffy, capture him.  McKay, get this shield down.  Now."

"I'm working on it," he muttered.  It finally faded a few minutes later.  "There."

"I'm trying to stop them!" Maybourne shouted.

"Too late," Jack said.  A wall of the prison blew out.  "I didn't know he slept with explosives."

"He doesn't," Willow said.  "That was magic."

A demon wandered out looking messed up.  "Xander is very mean not to let me play with them.  He only wanted the building destroyed and any other victims freed."  He nodded at Buffy, giving her a sleepy look.  "You should remind him he's mean later."  He disappeared.

Buffy jogged in there, Willow and Dawn after her.  "Xander!" she called.

"He's in here," Cordelia called.  "With the parts."  They came to the doorway and stopped.  "I haven't seen him this bad since that one guy in Zimbabwe got him."

"Xander," Dawn said.  She walked closer, around the bodies.  "Hi."  He growled and sniffed.  "It's Dawn, Xander."

"Pack."  He stood up, staring at her.  "Here?"

"I got out and got help thanks to you."  She led him over the bodies and to the door.  "Buffy and Willow came to help.  They brought their husbands."

Xander sniffed then nodded.  "Girls."  He walked off, going to find someone else to beat the hell out of.  He found the begging higher up and attacked him with a growl.

"What the hell!" Maybourne shouted.  "Someone tranq dart him!"

"Hell no!" Jack said.  "You deserve the ass kicking."

"It wasn't my people!  They were all fired at least a week ago!"  He dodged another hit but he wasn't that lucky and Xander was really good.  "What is wrong with him!  He's worse than Sheppard's bug phase."

"Hyena," Buffy said with a smirk.  "And a soldier."

"Probably a few more too," Willow sighed.  She knocked Xander out before he bit the guy.  "Speak, mister, or my husband can chastize me all night for magicking you into various things until you beg me."

"Really?  We got married and didn't tell me?" Buffy demanded.

"Um, last night," she said sheepishly, giving her a hesitant smile.  "Sorry?"

"Uh-huh."  She glared at the idiot.  "Well?  I'm not that patient."

"I don't know.  Honestly.  I never authorized this.  All the people I've seen listed as part of it were fired recently.  Especially a few of his former guards!"

"Is this more of that Trust crap?" Jack demanded.

"No, I don't think so."  He usually didn't think O'Neill, either one, was this scary but right now....  "I'll get to the bottom of this."

"No way," Willow said, snapping her fingers and two more people appeared.  "Chris, Xander needs to go back to DC.  The NID had him in custody and he reverted to his possession.  This NID higher up said that all these people who took Dawn and Mr. Harris hostage aren't his," she told the other one.  "You probably won't find anyone living anymore but there's probably plenty of information since Xander didn't destroy that.  Even though it might link back to why some of his guards left him alone."

"Excuse me?" Chris demanded.  Dawn nodded.  The NID guy nodded too.  "Director, can my team investigate this?"

"No.  Your team can head back to DC to protect him, Larabee.  We need you more there."  He looked at the sleeping young man.  "Did we tranquilize him?"

"Yup, before he killed the weenie with answers," Willow said.

"Because it would've taken all my fun," Dawn agreed.

Maybourne looked at her.  "What are you?  You're not the normal human."

She smirked.  "Even if I felt like explaining it to you, I wouldn't because your whole purpose is to create torture and mayhem."  She looked at her sister.  "They left my kids with Connor."

"Go," Buffy ordered.  "If they need a statement they can come see you."  She nodded and left in a flash of light.  She texted Sam to warn him.  Dawn was still pissed off and Connor might be hiding her kids from her for a few minutes.

"Hopefully Sam's back will hold up long enough to calm her down," Jack said.  He looked at Maybourne.  "Larabee, arrest him."  He did that with an evil smirk.  "McKay, I know it's your honeymoon, though you're in trouble for not telling us."

"I filed for appropriate leave paperwork for the both of us," Willow said coolly.

"You still should've told us," Buffy told her.  "I tell you important stuff!"

"Ladies, later," the other higher up said.  "General, please get your people back where they belong and Agent Larabee with his charge."  He nodded, calling for that beam out. He called someone to come investigate this mess.  "This is Director Fornell of the FBI.  I have a hell of a mess at my phone's coordinates.  Someone kidnaped the Vice President and he had to make a mess getting himself free.  I'm told there's probably no survivors beyond the higher up who showed up to try to stop them.  No, he's alive," he said at the officer's sniffle.

"He went primal.  He's back under good guard.  Possibly.  I got here via magic."  He hung up but left his phone on.  Within a half hour a helicopter landed near him and he nodded at his people.  "The people in there, who may be dead, kidnaped the Vice President.  He went primal to get himself free."  They all stared, one glaring at him.  "Epps, lead the team looking for survivors.  When you get back, take a statement from Dawn Summers.  She's with the city's protection patrol."

"I know of her," he said.  "She was here?"

"She said she was captured as well.  She's how I got here."  He pointed.  "This is the director of the NID.  He said they had all been fired.  Some of them may even be former Secret Service agents."  Epps nodded, deploying his people as more showed up.  Fornell looked at Maybourne.  "I'd sing like the choir."

"I...  I had no part in this.  I only heard the rumor this morning, ran it down, and came out here to stop them."

"That may save you from a treason charge," he said dryly.   Epps came out looking green.  "Survivors?"

"Two in cells and they need immediate medical attention."  Someone shouted and he held his earpiece.  "We found one on life support as well.  In some sort of machine."

Fornell nodded.  "I'll get you guys help."  He called that in and they sent medical teams out to move them.  This wasn't going to be a pretty investigation by any means.


Chris landed in the condo with Xander, who was still out.  "Ezra, help me get him to bed.  He went primal and ripped the hell out of the agents who had captured him."  Ezra glared but helped him.  "You good?"

"They darted JD and I was asleep again," he said quietly.  "JD is taking the dogs to the vets because they still had the darts on them."

"Good deal."  He called his desk.  "Nathan, me.  Dawn summoned me to help Xander.  NID had him."  He hung up.  "Some of his former guards," he said quietly.

"It will not be happening again," Ezra assured him.

"Not on our watch.  Any idea how to get him out of it?"

"Not in the least.  We'll figure it out I suppose."  He sat down next to him when the boy started to snuffle around.  "Xander, it's Ezra."

"Pack," he said quietly, flipping to hug him around his waist.

"Yes, we're your pack and you're safe now.  No one else will dare come near you again."  He petted him gently, making him relax and purr.  He smiled at the boy.  "I know, I'm very comforting.  Can you perhaps wake up and be human?"  The boy blinked up at him.  "Are you out of your primal state?"


"Good."  He kept petting him.  It was helping so he'd indulge him.  "What happened?"

"I woke up there.  I don't know how."

"They sedated all of us," Ezra said calmly.

"Are you okay?  And the dogs?"

"They're fine.  I had JD take them to the vet in case."  Xander nodded, relaxing again.  He closed his eyes.  "Are you injured?"

"They tried to shock me twice but I've had worse from vampires."

"Hmm.  Should we call in a medic to look you over?" Ezra asked.

"Please don't call Nathan?" he begged.

Chris snickered.  "He's still in Denver, Xander.  It's just us here right now."

"The horses?"

"They're fine I'm sure," he told him.  His phone rang.  "Larabee."  He listened.  "No, sir, he rescued himself.  Dawn summoned me, the General sent us back here.  He's awake and cuddly."  He hung up with a wince.  "I heard Marines who don't swear like that."

"Mr. Sheppard is having a fit?" Ezra asked dryly.

"I think he's going to blow something up soon without explosives."  He sat down beside the boy so he could get a coherent report out of him.  They'd need it if Xander had left any survivors.  Ezra would let him cuddle for now since it was helping him calm down.  Chris wouldn't say a word about that stuff.  It wasn't his place and he wanted Ezra to be happy.


John stormed out of the car and into the building, not caring who saw him.  The doorman stood up then went pale.  "Which floor is Harris' place on?" he demanded.

"Fourth, sir."

"Thank you.  I'm not here."

"Yes, sir."  He saluted and John nodded, getting into the elevator.   He relaxed since no one else came in.  He sent the valet to move the car out of the no parking zone.  It wasn't an official vehicle, they couldn't get away with that.

John pounded on the door, getting let in by Chris.  "What the fuck happened?" he demanded.

"He has neighbors," Chris reminded him dryly.  "He's awake, aware, back to human."  He handed over the notes he had made.  "Apparently they had Dawn as well."

John growled, calling his director of the FBI.  "I want a damn report within hours, Fornell.  What the fuck happened and how did they capture Xander?"  He listened, scowling hard.  "Excuse me?  Oh hell no Maybourne isn't allowed out of custody!"  He listened and scowled some more.  "Good!  I'm glad he made the mess.  Give me an update when you get back to DC and I want to know before you start arresting."  He hung up, looking at Chris.  "Can we impose on you?"

"Yup.  For now."

"Thank you."  He went in to check on Xander.  "Hey."  Xander blinked at him, then grinned.  "You look very comfortable."  He petted him gently.  "Are you okay?  Need a hospital?  Or Lam?  She said to call her out of bed if you needed her.  I think she's got a crush," he said with a grin of his own.

"No, I'm okay.  I've had worse from vampires and past boyfriends."

"No more of those.  Date Ezra.  We like you and Ezra as friends so we'd like you and him together for real."  He petted him again.  "Fornell is investigating and I'll be cutting off heads myself, Xander.  Just calm down."  He nodded and put his head back down so he could go back to sleep.  He looked at Ezra and smiled.  "Thank you."  He walked out at the new knock.  Two Metro PD officers were there.  "Gentlemen, I need you to keep a quiet eye on this apartment."

"Mr. President, sir.  We got told shouting was coming from here?"

"Hell yes I shouted.  Someone stole the Vice President.  This is his house he's flipping."  They nodded at that.  "He's recovering from his kidnaping here.  I was yelling because I just heard about it."

"We'll keep a subtle, quiet eye on the building, sir.  Was he kidnaped locally?  Do we need to help the FBI?"

"I'm told they're by LA and they're all dead thanks to Xander getting himself free.  He's injured and tired from the battle still.  An Ancient's chair will wear you out.  Just keep it quiet so he doesn't have to sell it too soon."  They nodded and left.  He looked at Chris.  "I'll make sure of the guard team he presently has."  He left, going to yell at the Director of the Secret Service as well.  He needed to vent this temper and someone needed their foot up his ass.  He had learned how to chew people a new one from Rodney.  He could channel him for now.  Then yell at him later for not telling him he had gotten married.


Xander woke up in the middle of the night, looking at his bedmate.  "I'm sorry I cuddled."

"I'm not."  He smiled.

"We should talk, huh?"

"We should," he agreed.  "How are you feeling?"

"Kinda sore and achy.  I'm pretty good at holding that off until after the issue anymore."  He sat up, looking at his friend.  "Did I really goof up?"

"No.  Why would you have?"

"I meant our friendship, Ezra."

"Again, why would you have?"  Xander gave him a pointed look.  He smiled.  "I find myself flattered that you would find me more than suitable."  Xander blushed, ducking his head a bit.  "That is adorable on you."  He took a careful, soft kiss.  Xander kissed back.  "I cannot be your guard if we are together."

"I know.  Then again I don't really need much of a guard.  Occasionally I need an assistant."

Ezra nodded.  "Yes you do."  He smirked.  "We'll see how this works since we'll be back here again for six months."

"John bought the farm you guys used last time."

"Then the horses will find a pleasurable home and the herd will be together again."  He stroked over Xander's arm.  "You're chilled."

"I'm okay."  He shifted closer slowly.  Ezra let him snuggle next to him.  "I'm not really as wild as I appear to be," he said quietly.  "Unless I'm bored or need to let it out."

"We will work on all that tomorrow."

"Is there any food?"

"There's a plate in the refrigerator for you."  Xander got up to get it.  He came back nibbling and sat down again.  "No crumbs on the bed.  They're not conducive to good sleep."

"Not," Xander said between bites.  He looked around.  "No dogs?"

"With John so they can use the yard."

"Oh.  Okay."  He finished up and put the plate down on the floor beside the bed then cuddled up to Ezra again.  "You're really overdressed."

Ezra laughed.  "I believe we should both be clothed for the moment."  He did strip down to his boxers and t-shirt.  Xander put on some boxers.  That would work for tonight.  Even if Ezra did have to wear socks because the apartment was cold.  Xander kept him nicely warmed and supple the entire night.

The End.

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