Demon Criminal Investigative Services: Aliens Too Now?
Sam Winchester looked around then shook his head slowly. Something was going on. Everyone was out on cases but Xander's team. That's mostly because Xander's team was half-dead from their last case. Except Xander, who was ignoring the fact he had hurt his back, again, and was having stress issues. That's why he was watching the gate. The watchers were running Gibbs through their usual paces. Gibbs was amused and pretty soon he'd turn things around and make the watchers beg for mercy with Marine tactics. John had, Dean had, Gibbs would too. That's why he was outside when the gate guards called in an odd code. He had no idea why they were calling in a 'not sure if it's an emergency' code but okay. He jogged that way, finding three big, hairy, demonic looking motorcyclists. "Huh." He slowed down. "Hi, guys." Xander jogged up to stop beside him. "What's going on? Can we help?"
One took off his helmet. "We'd like to talk to your director about a sensitive subject," he said.
"Sure," Xander agreed. "Come across the gateway please?" They slowly rolled across one at a time and the wards they put up didn't react. "Looks like you're not going to hurt us so I can tell you Danny's off base for about two hours. Can it wait that long or is it an immediate need I need to page him for?"
"We can probably wait but we heard he's the person to go to about things like this problem," the one without the helmet said.
"Is this a problem that...Jack might also help with?" Xander asked. "Because I'm flashing back to an early nineties cartoon with three bikers who looked a lot like you three."
"Possibly," he admitted with a smirk. "The guy who did the cartoon was a cousin of Charley Girl's."
"Good to know. Is this a case like a harassment or like there's a problem Danny and Jack need to talk about?"
"Most people leave us alone. Normal humans ignore strange things."
Xander nodded. "Yes they do. I'm from Sunnydale originally. They ignore it a lot." He grinned. "Welcome to the DCIS base. Let me tell Danny he can't lag and get another latte on his way back. Want to park in visitor parking and come into the main building? It's a bit chilly out here today."
"Sure," he said. "It's safe, guys." They took off their helmets. "This is a nice base," Throttle praised.
Xander grinned. "Thanks, man. We do try. Oh, the shrub? Its name is George and he does have poison spikes. Don't block his sun." They nodded and followed him inside. "Hey, Sam, where are Binky and Digger?"
"Out back by their barn. They were kicking up snow." He waved. "C'mon, guys. It's warmer and we have some hotdogs somewhere. If the girls haven't eaten them." They shrugged and followed. He led them to the kitchen.
"Caf-pows have caffeine if you're sensitive," Xander warned when Vinnie went to it. "They're high octane."
Vinnie nodded. "I'm good with that. Took me eight months to get used to caffeine but now I live on it."
"Cool. Just a warning." He called Danny's phone. "Hey, me. We have visitors who need to speak to *you* about you and Jack stuff. Three. Here. Dining room. Thanks." He hung up. "It'll be about forty more minutes. The place nearly has the order ready. Unfortunately the local grocery store has a new manager and he goofed on the food order. Since the girls eat like herds of animals...." They nodded. "Want a tour or to stay in here?"
"We can tour," Throttle said. "If you want."
"It's not classified and none of the girls are here to try to pet you. I won't introduce you to Abby because she will pet you and squeal at you." They all smiled and went with him. "This is our gym. Practice, PT, self defense lessons with the slayers, all that. Down the hall's the armory. There's another empty room past there too. We're still filling up the space." He took them up to the squad floor. "This is our desk and case area. Most everyone's off right now but my team. We kinda...limped in after the last case turned into a cross-family attack."
He grimaced. "Most of my guys are off in their apartments." He pointed out a window. "Those are the housing areas. We're converting a building but that's boring and pretty much gutted. That building is the slayer's dorms. Out to the back is the pet's barn. There's two baby unicorns that came over right before breach screwed things up. They're the slayer's pets. Binky and Digger." He grinned. "They're pretty nice and only one can be petted if you're not virginal but they're cool pets. We try really hard not to baby them too much. They tried to live inside a few times." He heard a voice and looked back at the person thumping into the room. "Hey, Doctor House."
House stopped and stared. "Wasn't there a cartoon with them?"
Vinnie smirked and nodded. "Sweetheart's cousin did it."
"Ah." He nodded once. "Xander, physical?"
"Can't I wait? I'm doing the tour."
"Physical," he ordered. "Now. I'm bored and you're a good cure to boredom."
"Want me to hula dance?" he asked dryly.
"You might turn me into one of your lust parade since I'm such a badass," House snarked back. "Physical."
"Wouldn't seeing him naked be just as bad?" Throttle asked dryly.
"Not really. I've seen him wench around."
"Not all the wenches were girls, House," Xander said dryly.
House stared then smirked. "Good to know. We can check you there too. Chase needs to be embarrassed today. March!"
"Fine. Give me ten? Danny's coming."
"March." He limped over and grabbed him by the hair to pull off. "Keep it up and I'm going to confine your butt to base because you aren't dumping post case stress. It showed how you jumped in front of the danger when the guys had the right weapons out and you didn't. Guys, go look at the cuteness that's the pets. Jackson will be home soon." He walked Xander off, still having a good hand in his hair. "Listen to the doctor's orders, Xander. We know more than you do." He shoved him onto the elevator and got on after him. "Keep it up and I'm putting the cane up your ass next time." He pushed the right button and they headed down. "Do I have to treat you like my bitch again?"
"No, Doctor House," he said sullenly. "I'll be a good boy."
"Good." He let the boy walk out first and kicked him on the butt. "You have to take better care of yourself and dump that post battle stress better, Harris. Before the girls lose you too." He walked after him shaking his head. "Anything we should check rectally?"
"I haven't been torn."
"Good!" He walked him into the infirmary and back to the cubicle, handing him the gown. "Strip."
"Good." He went to take his medicine then came back to do the exam.
Throttle looked at the guys. "Let's go look at the cuteness. It won't hurt us studly, macho guys to look."
"Fine," Vinnie said, following him out and down there. They ran into Sam going that way. "Going to admire the cuteness?"
"I thought I saw one of the girls sneak past." He gave him a look. "If so, I'm going to yell." They all smirked. "It happens. We know it happens. Depending on which girl it is it happened earlier this week too." They got within sight of the barn and Sam took off running. "Get someone!" he shouted.
"Vinnie, get a guard," Throttle yelled, heading after him. Modo spotted something and turned to fire at a spot without anything there.
Sam fell to his knees beside the small body. "Anna?" he called. "Anna, come on, answer me."
"Bad guy," she whispered, pointing at the spot. "Bad, hurting Binky."
"You did good to protect Binky," he promised. He saw a guard and looked up. "Get House or Chase, now!" he shouted. "Something got Annabelle!" The guard radioed and came over to help. "We need a board."
The guard called in. "We need a board, she's got at least a broken leg and is looking pretty weak." He looked at the spot. "What's there?"
"Something we know," he said, reaching down and plucking off the small, purple orb. The alien reappeared. "Venusian." He leaned down. "You want to tell me anything since you just hurt a child?" he demanded coldly.
"Hired," he whimpered. He said something in his own language.
Modo stood up and sneered. "Doesn't help you any." He popped up his arm cannon. "I can fix it so you can't do it again."
"We have a jail," Sam ordered. "We want them first anyway." Chase came out with the back board and another guard. "That thing hurt her."
"We can deal with it," Chase assured him. They carefully loaded her and carried her off. He spared a glance at the creature then looked at the furry one helping. "Any poisons or toxins we should hear about?"
"No, they're bullies, not dangerous that way." He paused when he saw someone else running, getting out of the way. That one took his spot and he jogged back to find Sam standing over the moaning alien. "You feel better?"
"Not yet. I can fix that though. Dad, head to the infirmary too!" he bellowed. "We need to know how to unmask them. And what he said."
"We can translate," Modo promised. He hauled the Venusian up and handed him over. "I'm not sure how you'd tell any others."
"Frequency generator," Abby said, coming out to get the small orb. She looked at it. "Is it wave based, light based, or magic based?"
"Light," Throttle said. "Other than that, I have no clue."
"I can find out. This way, guys." She led them back to the interrogation center, letting them into a room. "Let me get one of the agents to take a formal statement of how he just screwed himself because we all *love* Annabelle. He's lucky the unicorn didn't get him."
"She said she was protecting one, ma'am," Throttle said.
"That's usually her thing," she agreed, heading to call someone. "Paul, need you in interrogation. Get Xander if you can. Something hurt Anna and it's been captured." She hung up and went up to the lab. She'd wonder about three giant, furry mice demons later. When she had time to pet them. She ran the orb through a sensor they had gotten from Sam and Area 51, smiling at the frequency it put out. She got into the code bracelets she and McKay had come up with, programming it. Then she texted Dawn to tell her about the update. Then she texted Don Epps to let him know too, just in case that thing was going after very young slayers.
Dawn looked at her bracelet when it beeped. "That means something updated," she said, staring at it. She looked up at the teacher. "I need to find a few of the older girls," she mouthed when the teacher gave her an odd look. The teacher shook her head. "There's an issue." Her bracelet went off and she ran out of the room, heading for the office. They had a trunk of weapons in the office. Something tackled her and she rolled then came up to face...nothing. "Huh." Something gave her a shove so she kicked back at it, making something grunt. The principal came running. "My alarm bracelet went off," she called. "It's shielded. Lock it down, let the slayers out." He nodded, going to pass that order and get the trunk out for her. She dodged a hit she felt coming and then muttered, closing all the light off. "Ah, there you are." She attacked, feeling someone familiar coming up behind her.
"It's shielded. The glowing spot must bend light." It was grabbed by one of the slayers and the thing came visible again. She let the light spell go and they kicked its ass. They did it very well as they were trained to. The girls went after the others, who were in gym. Dawn looked at the body then snorted. "Pity you tried that." She got the handcuffs the principal was holding and cuffed it, then called the base. "I have a green, slimy thing here that tried to attack me?" It tried to move and she kicked it. She paused. "Anna okay?" She nodded. "Good idea. We've got it here at the school. Send us people." She hung up. "Watch him, he moves, put wood in his feet. It won't hurt him as far as we know, just make it really hard for him to run." She ran toward the gym, finding the thing going after Brenda so she pounced and knocked it down onto the floor then banged its head onto the floor before taking the shiny orb. "They're not demons, but one attacked Anna and hurt her pretty badly."
Brenda kicked the demon. "Bastards. You're going to pay for that."
"Yes it is. Xander's on base. Gibbs saw. He's heading for interrogation according to the guard. Ladies, our bracelets can detect the orb thingy hiding them. As far as we know, no known weakness. They're not demons. That's why you can't feel them." They nodded. "Call the younger set. Now." Brenda went to do that - coming from her was like coming from John. She pushed her hair back. "I need a shower." She got up and let the girls bind this one too. "Let's carry him out." They grunted but they did lift and carry. This sucker was heavy. She followed, wincing when her bracelet went off right before something plowed into her side. "What? Am I tasty to your kind?" she demanded. She kicked it off and snatched the orb, letting the slayers handle it from behind since they were there. One of them staked it and it was bleeding so good on them. Even if it didn't kill it. She panted, leaning down. "I agree with Sam. Bruised ribs suck."
Brenda helped her up. "Anna snuck out of class."
"I know. You know. Everybody but her teacher knows." They came out to the entry. "Can one of us have a talk with her teacher?"
The principal looked at them. "One of ours?"
"Elementary," Dawn said. "Anna's teacher doesn't get that she's bored stupid and that's why she keeps falling asleep, cutting class, doodling, all that stuff she complains about."
"The teacher could have a point."
"The teacher could also realize that Anna does her best work wondering 'what if' and 'why' and she's been with Abby in the lab a lot lately," Dawn shot back, giving him a look. "She's bored."
"I'll talk with her."
"Thanks. Keeps Xander out of her face."
"She did want to avoid that fate." Two of the base's guards came in. "Any precautions we should take?"
"Not that we know of, sir. Just mop up any blood. You girls okay?"
"Dawn has bruised ribs," Brenda said, giving her a shove, getting a wince back.
"I also have a test this period and next," Dawn quipped. "So, they'll wait." She started to walk off but the guards carried her out to the jeep and put her into it while the slayers carried out the heavy creatures. "Fine, I'll get an excuse from House." She got comfortable and sighed. "I hate bruised ribs." The creature behind her tried to move so she growled and looked back at him. "Try it, sparky." She held him down with a touch of magic and he screamed and hollered like she was torturing him. "Huh. Don't like magic." She sneered. "I'm a witch and you're in deep shit." They shrank down as the guards got in. "They don't like magic."
"Tough noogies. You okay?"
"Bruised, not broken."
"Good." He drove them off, running into Doctor Jackson and his brake job in town. He had a few papers in his briefcase he had to get but he caught a ride back with them too. The food was being shipped up since his brakes had been leaking in the parking lot of the supermarket. They parked in front of the building and dragged the creatures out.
"Walk," Dawn ordered with a point. They tried to move and she cast a simple light spell. They ran. She put up a barrier in front of them and they stopped, backing away from it. She used it to herd them into the elevator and then to interrogation. She walked in. "They're afraid of magic," she told Paul. Two of the ones from the school were crying. "Any idea since they all seemed to want me?"
"Not yet. The ones translating," he said with a point. "Keep saying they're saying bartender."
Dawn made the air clap like thunder and they all froze. "I want to know why you attacked us, who sent you if someone did, and why they did it. Am I clear?" she demanded in her best Xander voice. "Or else I get to start questioning. You'd better believe I'm less nice than Gibbs is. I'm female." They started to talk over each other and the mice shook their heads. "No what?"
"You're an angry goddess and a bartender hired them to take out Slayers," Modo said. "That they're wrong and drawing too much power to the light. The dark had to balance it out."
"Ah. That's good. Do we know the bartender and which realm they came from?"
"Venus," Vinnie told her.
"Even better. A bartender on Venus knows about slayers?" She smirked at the beings, making them all cower. "What's his name?" They stuttered something. "D'Holykand?"
"Higher level demon, over souls stolen, bought, given, or born wrong. He's over all those that do the contracts," Xander said as he walked in. They spotted him and ran to hide behind Gibbs. "Aww, how sweet, you've heard of me."
"Xander, they are not stress relief," Daniel said firmly. "Go work out if House lets you."
"No. Not this week." He looked at Dawn. "You good?"
"Bruised ribs. I'll live. Anna?"
"Broken leg in two places, compound fracture of one arm. Fracture on her left hipbone. They're fucked if John gets 'em."
"Yup." She raised a hand and they fell to their knees wailing. "Danny? Jail?"
"Definitely. Then we'll figure the next part out with Jack since they're not demons." They all nodded. Xander and Dawn got them moving. One tried to break free but Xander hip tossed him and stomped on his chest while moaning and grabbing his back. "You good?" Danny called.
"No," Xander said weakly. "But I'm fine."
"I've seen less stubborn Marines," Gibbs said, coming to help.
"Thank you. I like that compliment." Xander made himself straighten up and sneered at the alien, saying something in one of the demon tongues. It wailed. "Move, now," he snarled, his eyes starting to glow.
Dawn knocked him out. "We need to find you a new stress outlet before that nasty possession comes back out, Xan." She floated them off, making them scream, wail, and try to get down. Not that she was going to let them but they tried really hard. Gibbs followed. He hadn't seen the jail yet.
Daniel called down to the infirmary. "Xander's knocked out by Dawn because his hyena taint was coming back out. Dawn has bruised ribs. I want a status report on Anna as soon as you're done." He hung up and looked at the aliens. "My office, please. It sounded important. Thank you for helping with that matter."
"That one guy's really tough."
"Annabelle's a favorite and the third youngest slayer," Daniel said as they walked. "She's basically the morale monitor. Everyone loves Anna even when she drives you insane. They picked on the wrong girl and Xander's had a run of stress." That got a nod. They walked into his office. "Let me call Jack, get him moving this way to handle that then we'll talk?" They nodded. Daniel sat down and dialed. "Jack, me. I have three Martians in my office, based on the old cartoon, and five Venusians in lockup after they attacked slayers. Yes, Jack, I'm sober and all that. Bring someone." He hung up. "He's bored anyway. What can we help you guys with? Sit if you want. Or pace if you don't."
"The cartoon got some things right," Throttle said. "The war was won, the planet is trashed." Daniel nodded at that. "We did win against Limburger finally."
"Any others down here?"
"No, they're all gone from here but we decided to stay so we wouldn't tax our planet. The problem is that we've heard rumors of a plague of some kind and we don't know why. We can't get hold of anyone. We had been sending what we could of food but it's been months since they could pick anything up."
"We can try to contact them. Jack's people have a long distance communications method." And a space ship or ten that they could borrow and one they own. "Just a mission of mercy?"
"If we could get the blood to test, is there a way to do that? We heard you guys have research into demon things. It shouldn't be much different."
"We can do that," Danny said happily. "Not an issue. House is one of the best doctors there is and his speciality is finding what sort of strange disease you have. Most of our scientists are forensics people with a few regular scientists thrown in. We can definitely do that; it shouldn't take too long to see what the problem is and if we have a cure that'll work. We'd need a good sample of blood probably. Possibly a small tissue sample."
"We had one of the young guys crash trying to come down here," Throttle said, opening his jacket to pull out a small bottle. "We buried him so if you have to we can get more."
"That should be plenty." He called the lab. "Abby, get here and bring House with you." He hung up. "It might be necessary to pull some for comparison. If so, we would destroy any extra. We're not going to use it to target people."
"That's what we heard," Modo promised. Abby and House came in.
"These three's people are Martians."
"Saw the cartoon," House admitted.
"Our people are having some sort of plague. We're not sure. The rations are scarce at best so we have no idea how we'll get medicine up there but we'd like to figure out what it is and what we need."
"I'll need some blood for comparison and some to test medicines and cures on," House told them. They nodded and took off their jackets. "Abby, get Chase to pull blood?" She nodded, leading them off. "The other things?"
"A demon pretending to be a bartender hired them to come kill slayers to rebalance against the darkness."
House gave him a look. "Crackheads in space?"
"Possibly. We know the demon or Xander did before his hyena came out."
"We've got him tied down. We need to get him an assistant too."
"I thought that was Dean."
House smirked. "I'll talk with Dean." He went to do that. "Dean!" He jumped and came jogging over. "Xander need an assistant. That's your job."
"I thought I was."
"So did we. His hyena just came back out on the things that hurt Anna." Dean growled. "Exactly. We've got him tied down. Deal with things." He walked off. He had some testing to do. The microscope and testing equipment told him what it was. "It's not a virus, it's a toxin." The three mice stared. "That means it's naturally occurring most likely. A contaminant." He frowned, going into more depth to analyze the toxin. "It's biological. Looks...herbal?" He looked at them. "What's the usual diet?"
"We have a grass we use like you guys use wheat," Vinnie said. "We don't have any here." He frowned, looking at Throttle then back at him. "Lack of water causing it?"
"I'd have to have a sample."
"We might be able to pull one off his ship. It's pretty banged up and some of it was on fire. We haven't searched it," Throttle admitted.
"Do that." A series of rings came down in the middle of the room then disappeared. "Hi. Welcome to my infirmary. Do that again, watch me beat your ass," he warned. "You could have hit someone."
"Sorry!" Jack defended. "What's going on?" House pointed. He looked. "Weren't you guys a cartoon?" They nodded. "Are you actually Martians?" They smirked and nodded. "What's going on?"
"Venusians in lock up for hunting slayers. Their people are having a toxin plague," House summarized. "They could use some meds, food, and water."
"We might be able to handle that," he decided. "What do you need from us, Doc?"
"Biological samples to compare this against in the lab."
"The last one who crashed had a ship that was partially on fire but we never checked," Vinnie said.
"Where is it now?"
"Chicago. Behind the garage."
"Good. Call them. We'll go pick it up." They did that and he made the call to the orbiting ship. "It's me. Go to Chicago. You're picking up the remains of a crashed ship from Mars. Do not backtalk me," he warned when someone spluttered. "They're having a plague. Put on Caldwell." He listened. "Caldwell, you heard? They're standing here. House said so. So did Danny, and then we've got prisoners. Thanks." He hung up. He heard the ship depart for Chicago and shook his head.
"Good help so hard to find, even in the military?" House taunted.
"Never let anyone tell you they don't question orders. They do," Jack said dryly. "Tell me what they can and can't have and what they need for medicine."
"We can do that." Jack nodded, heading off to talk to Danny while House and Abby got to work on the toxin and what various medicines did to the blood. They were keeping track, just in case.
Cordette's bracelet beeped. "That's an update," she said quietly. The teacher gave her a dirty look. "They updated my alarm." The change bell rang and she walked to her next class, which was gym. On the way, it went off. She hurried for the gym, it was more open and easier to fight in. Plus had more hiding spots. Halfway there, something tackled her and knocked her out.
She didn't get to see someone shoot it and destroy the orb then the creature.
"Huh. Pity about that," Matt Sheppard said dryly. He checked the girl over, waving off the worried guards. "I'm one of the trainers from DCIS. Her alarm was going off. That thing attacked her," he told him.
"Sure, let's let the principal handle this," he decided. He called and they got them moved. Cordette got put onto a couch with a cool compress. Don Epps was summoned. They all stared at the remains. Don stomped in. "The first I knew was gunshots," the guard told him.
"Good to know. Thank you. I'll take over." He nodded and left. He looked at the people. "Major."
"I was coming to train Cordette for a while in gym."
"That's fine. You did good with the other girls." That got a smile. "What's that thing?"
"No clue. It attacked her. Her alarm was going off. I saw her be tackled and aimed center mass. It hit the thing hiding it then it."
"Good enough," he decided. He called the base. "It's Epps. We have an unidentified thing here at Cordette's school after she was attacked." He listened. "Sounds like it. Why?" He listened. "Excuse me?" The guard repeated it. "Okay, and we do what with it?" He nodded. "That'll work. No, she's taking a nap but she's fine. Thank you." He hung up. "Not demonic," he said dryly.
Matt looked at it then at him. "It looks like it is."
"It's not demonic. The guards said so. Everyone else is out, injured, or with Daniel." A portal opened and Dawn walked through. The corpse floated off and she left again. "Dawn, a report please?"
She came back to whisper in his ear before giving Matt a hug. "I did so good kicking butt earlier when they came for me. Thank you."
"You're welcome. What was it?"
"Venusian. A demon went up as a bartender and hired them to rebalance the universe because there's too many slayers. We know the demon and Xander's so pissed his hyena slipped back out. I have bruised ribs and nice pain killers so I'm going to go take a nap. If you run into more, wood doesn't hurt them but they're deathly afraid of magic." She walked back through the portal and it closed.
Matt looked at Don. "Want to bring her by for some training time this weekend?"
"Sure, we can do that. We've been working on some tracking stuff with Agent Edgerton."
"I've heard of Ian. Benny Ray says he's good. Consider us local support if she needs it since we retired." That got a nod and they shook hands. "I'm going to have a beer."
"I'll bring her by later so I can have one." Matt smiled and left. Don sat down beside his little sister, patting her until she woke up. "Want to go to the ER?"
"I'm too tough for the ER," she said in a near whine.
"No you're not. You're not Xander. I don't want you to be Xander. Or Buffy. If you're hurt, we're going to the ER."
"Daddy Alan will freak out and pout."
"He'll do it more because you were attacked by aliens." She gave him an odd look. "Dawn said so."
"Dawn needs the ER for drugs. Or House needs to quit giving them to her." She sat up. "I'm okay."
"If the thing comes back, Dawn said there's a glowing spot on its chest. It blocks it from sight. Take that then knock it out." She nodded. "Call if you can first. If not call directly afterwards."
"Yes, Don." She gave him a hug. "I'm okay."
"Uh-huh." He checked her head. "You have a lump. C'mon."
"Quit. Now. Before I call Dad to meet us." She whimpered. "I mean it. Charlie too." She quit. He smiled. "Thank you." He picked her up. "We're going to the ER. They're probably going to be very sorry about that."
"Sure. What if more come?"
"There's no other slayers here. Unless they come after witches and then it'll come after the Ponsey girl."
"I can handle that. Feel better soon, Cordette. Don't forget a medical excuse."
"I won't." He walked her out to his car, calling his boss. "Something attacked Cordette in school. I'm taking her to the ER. Lump on the head. Thanks, boss." He hug up and got them in to drive up the street. Fortunately it wasn't that far or the time of day for a lot of injuries. The nurse smiled at them. "She's a slayer. Something attacked her and knocked her out for about twelve minutes."
"Looks like it." He let her see.
"We'll work her in, sir." He flashed his ID. "Agent Epps then. Go have a seat. It'll only be a few minutes." He went to cuddle her since she was complaining while she put that information back there. Slayers in LA? That young? Why?
House came up before dinner, putting a paper down in front of Daniel then a bottle. "That cures it. It's in the grass. It looks like a mold contamination that's been over- achieving due to the drought conditions. The list is what various human drugs do to their blood." He walked off.
"Viagra cures it?" Daniel yelled after him.
"Yup. God bless the men who wanted to get harder."
"Good to know." The three mice laughed and he looked the list over. "Let me copy this for future reference." He did that then handed Throttle the list and paged Jack. He was out playing with Binky. Or being played with by Binky, something like that. Sam had made him when she showed up so he wasn't in her way. He came jogging in. "Don't like Binky?"
"I can see why McKay freaked out." He looked at the bottle. "That's the cure?"
"Yes. House said it's in the grass. It's a contaminant that's been growing due to drought conditions."
"Then we can outfit them with MRE's easily enough. Maybe other stuff. I've been calling around and the President said he doesn't mind. We've done it with other allies that need it." He shrugged and looked at them. "Wheat, MRE's, rice?" They all nodded. "Water too, I realize that. Let me get the medicine ordered. How many in the population?" He looked at the label. "One pill should work, give a second in twelve hours if not better within eight." He nodded. "Easy enough to do. How many?"
"Last count was nineteen hundred," Vinnie said quietly. "That's why we're staying down here."
"Not a problem," Jack told them. "As long as you don't become a PR nightmare, threaten people, cause a problem, any of that. If something happens, they'd call Danny anyway." He used the vidlink system to call the president's office. "Sir."
"Jack," he said, sounding and looking smug. "We have it?"
"We do, sir." He held up the bottle to the camera so he could see it. "From Doctor House."
"Good to know. Anything else we need to send up?"
"Food, water." Danny handed him the list. "It looks like aspirin's safe and so is penicillin. We might want to, just in case. It looks like aspirin to them is an antibiotic and penicillin is a heart medicine, sir."
"We can do that. How many in the population?"
"Last count was nineteen hundred." The president hissed. "They've been having issues."
"If they could find a place that would take them as a demon enclave, I wouldn't care," he decided. "I'll get that to you from the Joint Chiefs. Plus the viagra. They're used to strange requests from your people. Thank you, Jack, and you too, Doctor Jackson."
"Thank you, sir." They hung up. "How long?"
"Usually two days. I think since it's a plague they'll hurry." He called his direct boss. "General, Jack O'Neill."
"What is it this time?" he demanded.
"Allies having a plague and a food shortage due to it." The general winced. Jack nodded. "Some strange medicine requests but we need the stuff ASAP. Caldwell goes off tomorrow and he's agreed to pause there and hand it over if possible." He saw the fax come over. "That should be ours."
"It kills the toxin. Doctor House here at DCIS confirmed it."
"Good to know. Penicillin, Aspirin. We can get all of them in mass quantities. Only nineteen hundred left?"
"I can have it by tonight if Caldwell can drop down to pick it up."
Jack radioed him. "Caldwell, can you pick the stuff up going there tonight?" He got back an affirmative and nodded. "When, sir?"
"It's seventeen hundred your time, twenty hundred ours," he muttered. "Give me three hours?"
"Can do, sir. Thank you." He hung up. "Caldwell, three hours, General McPhearson has it. I can do that." He hung up. "Danny, he said he might need you to go as an ambassador or one of them. We'd bring you back of course," he told the mice. "If you wanted."
"They can't afford to feed what they have, much less us," Throttle said calmly. "But I can go."
"Good. Get ready to head in about two hours. Caldwell can pick you up." He stood up. "Now, it's dinner time. Don't let the girls pet you. They squeal. A lot. The others?"
"I contacted someone up there and they're going to call you to set up a prisoner exchange," Vinnie said. "They're very embarrassed."
"Me or him?" Jack asked.
"You. We all heard of you two and you're doing the official work."
"That's fine. I'm here but they'll forward stuff. So we can do that." He waved a hand. "Food?" They nodded and went with them. He smirked at Daniel. "McKay is still freaking out about Eggy adopting him when she hatched. Claims she steals all his food."
"She's an herbivore. How often does he eat vegetables?"
"Not very if he can help it." They walked to together. "Is Abby sending him anything?"
"She is and we're sending Eggy some nice leafy things plus a lot of seeds."
"Even better. Sheppard threatened to turn her into shoes. Beckett thinks she's the most precious thing ever, even if she does like to try to chew on his pants. She ate one woman's hemp sandals."
"Did she like the wraith taint?"
"Quite a lot. Treated it like you do jelly donuts. McKay watched in horror. Sheppard caught it on tape." He smirked.
Danny smirked back. "That's why they got Eggy."
"She does help. She even found one nearly dead and hiding on their base. Bit it until it died then ate the energy it gave off. If we need more can we get them?"
"Dawn said she sealed it. We shouldn't even have the occasional breach for centuries."
"Good! I saw tape and it was freakish."
"Yes it was," Daniel agreed. "How do you get rid of stress?"
"Right now? I go outside the mountain, into the woods, and I go scream. Who's holding it in?"
"Ah, him. Screaming might help. It might not help. What happened this time?"
"He's still doing too much. His team had the proper weapons but were slow in drawing on the last case so he jumped in to fight with the demon with the improper weapon. Half the team was injured when they opened fire and didn't hit the right spot. Xander hurt his back in the melee. The usual. Plus the Council stuff. The last of the probates is next month. He's got two in California of friends things. So we're... He's stressed and needs to release it but we can't do without him either. His last week off, all the demons went quiet so we only had research cases. This time I'm sure they'll cause us hell."
"Let him try screaming. It could help. I try to fish. Maybe a sports game?"
"No particular one that he likes." He shrugged as they walked into the dining hall and found Xander grilling one of the girls. "What's going on?"
"She's got a date," Dawn called. The girl swatted her. "This is Xander being a big brother." She looked at him. "I love you but you're loud."
He scowled at her. "Do we know this boy?"
"A bit. He's the little brother of the local werewolf." Dean moaned at that. "Did you hear about him?"
"Yeah. I darted him last time I saw him too." He and Xander shared a look. "Is she meeting him there?" She nodded quickly. "Why?"
"So you three and Xander can't threaten him. He's already slightly in awe of me. I'd like a boy who wasn't scared of bodily harm to woo me."
"Fine," Xander said, shaking his head. "We'll hear about it afterward. You will carry your phone. You will make sure that you are fully protected via birth control in case you get a case of terminal stupidity and do it on the first date. You'll check in with one of us when you get back. Clear?"
"Decent," she decided. "Thank you, big brother."
He smirked. "Don't make me bug you with a listening device or a concealed camera." She shuddered and sat down to eat, not looking at any of the adults.
"We do want the girls to be normal," Wesley reminded him.
"I did the same thing to Sammy's first girlfriend," John told him.
"My father met mine with a sword in hand," Wesley said dryly.
"Not a bad idea," Xander mused. Dawn swatted him. "Hey!"
She looked at the girl. "Buffy's rules are stricter. I used to have to get permission to work on projects that had boys." She shuddered. "We'll calm him down. This is first child syndrome." John snorted, shaking his head. "He'll relax when there's ten of us going on dates." Xander shook his head. "Yes you will. By the time Anna starts to date, it'll be easier."
"Her watcher can threaten him."
"Yes I can," Gibbs called. "And will." The girls all groaned. "Tough. It's for your own protection. You don't want to date a guy like DiNozzo, right?"
"Some of us have tried. Don't tempt us," one of the girls called then a few giggled.
"Do we have to do another room inspection?" Xander demanded, giving them dirty looks.
"Faith stole yours, Xander."
"I knew that. She stole mine and Dean's boxers to sleep in."
"I steal your t-shirts," Brenda said with a grin. "They're worn perfect to sleep in, Xander." He shook his head but he was grinning. "I steal John's old boxers to sleep in because his waist is the right size. You're too skinny. You should eat more." John swatted her on the arm. "Sorry, John."
"He used to give us his old shirts to sleep in too," Dean said, sounding pleased. "Means you might as well be a sister." John swatted him too. "Thanks, Dad."
"We're used to more insanity," Vinnie said with a wicked grin. "Really." A young girl hopped in on crutches. "Need help?"
"No. I'm tough and I'm a slayer; I can eat dinner up here. No matter what Doctor House says," she said with a pout. She sat in her seat, looking at the table, then at Cook. "Cook, I'm hungry!" she called. Food came out of the kitchen. "Thank you, Cook."
"You should be in bed."
"Then I'd have to eat soup and I'll end up going hungry all night and starting to starve for real." She pouted. "Dessert too?"
"We'll see. Eat first, Annabelle." She went back to the kitchen, bringing out the other food. The girls were helping her and John was making her eat a lot more meat than vegetables.
House limped in. "You should be in bed, Annabelle." She spit at him. "I mean it."
"I'm hungry and I'm a slayer. If Xander can get out of bed with a ripped up back, I can get up too!"
Xander looked down at her. "I can get up because I had bad parents. You do not. After dinner, you are going back to the infirmary even if I have to carry your tiny butt." She pouted. "Tough. Suck it up. Before you end up limping forever. I am not a good judge of my own pain tolerances thanks to my upbringing and hunting. None of you girls have that problem except Faith that I'm aware of. Therefore, none of you are going to have that problem except Faith unless I'm made aware of it. Am I clear?" They nodded, looking amused.
"Have that talk with Cordette," Daniel called. "She didn't want to go to the ER for the bump on the head she took because she's a slayer and tougher than that."
Xander growled. "One attacked her?"
"Sheppard was there to help her work on some new things. He got it. It was invisible and blind-sided her into a locker. Don said it's just a bump. Alan's fussed very well over it. Even Miss Kitty has. Calm down."
"Don't make us sedate you again," House told him. "You don't like it when I do. Especially when I take the cute pictures for the girls."
"I agree. Scary growl, X," Faith told him, staring him down. Xander slumped, muttering something and the lights went out for a second. She clapped. "Nice work."
"Thank you." He gave her a look. Then he looked at the girls. "If you need a bandaid, ice pack, stitches, or anything more than a kiss over a booboo, you are to head to the infirmary. All right?" They all sighed but nodded.
"Buffy doesn't," Annabelle pouted.
"Buffy's stupid," Faith told her. "That's part of her rep and she does it for that reason. X stitched her a number of times and so did Tweedy. So quit and finish up so you can go lay down again."
"I have a bed."
"Yes but infirmary beds come with pain killers," Xander told her.
"Yes, but they come with huge needles too."
"I'll give you pills," House promised, digging into his own dinner. "Are we getting a third table?"
"Probably a horizontal connector," Daniel told him. "Soon." That got a nod and everyone got back to eating. When House was done, Annabelle got done too and Xander carried her down there. Though he ended up in a bed of his own thanks to his back and had to stay because House and Chase reminded him of the attitude he was setting for the girls. Xander sighed but stayed in bed and watched the tv in there. He and Anna competed on the fifth grader show when it came on and he won, barely. She was a fifth grader so that made sense. He had more years of education.
Throttle looked at Jack later that night while they were off. "Riding along?"
"I've been to many worlds. Yours can't be stranger than the one with the humming plants and symbiotic beings."
Throttle shook his head quickly. "Sounds boring."
"It was. We had to set up a sound generator because they got hurt. Sam's fault totally." She glared at him. "It was. You were piloting."
"Whatever," she muttered, going back to helping navigate. "What pet did McKay get given?"
"Eggy. It eats Wraiths."
She turned to stare at him. "Excuse me?"
"It's a newborn herbivore dragon," Daniel told her from behind his book. "Her kind eat wraiths. Therefore Eggy went to them. She hatched and adopted McKay, which might keep him out of trouble. She's about ten inches long right now and thinks his neck is the perfect napping spot. Sheppard sent film."
"He sent me a complaint about portals and the new pet."
Daniel lowered his book to look at her. "It happens. When George started to go into heat I almost thought about sending him up."
"Weir would've killed you," she said smugly.
"Why? It comes from their galaxy too." She groaned, shaking her head. "That's also where Xander's temple is. Somewhere near there."
"If they run into it, Sheppard said he's not going to pretend to be a priest," Jack told him.
"How did he get a temple?" Vinnie asked. "Can I get one?"
"There's this role playing quest game in a demon casino in Las Vegas," Daniel said, smirking at him. "Xander was bored on his vacation because he doesn't really gamble. He signed up to go into it. No one had beat it yet using the standard hero methods. Most people washed out after the huge jell-o cube from what he said." He sighed, shaking his head. "Xander took some untraditional methods with him. Like instead of beating the dwarves with a sword, he challenged them to a drinking contest and won their respect." Jack snickered at that, shaking his head. "Yes, just like you did in that one place, Jack.
Anyway, the end level he had to beat this goddess that had been a problem in this realm or planet, whatever it is."
He put his book down beside his thigh. "That was the purpose to the game. To find someone who could beat her. She was evil, Xander attracts evil women. He played it as 'you know you want me, I can make them respect you instead of fear you, look how they want me'," he said blandly. The mice cracked up and Jack was nearly howling in laughter now. Sam was giggling too. "All the tavern and inn wenches he had slept with in the prior twenty-two rounds all gathered together to prove he was a god of lust after he took her out. We've got an official treaty with them. Xander has a temple there. The weekend he went to christen it, well, let's just say he came home very happy after two weeks their time. Nine of it spent christening the new temple."
"You're not allowed to do that. You'd have to use a sword instead of a laser pistol, bro." Vinnie pouted.
"They call up now and then wanting him back so if Sheppard finds the temple, he can say Xander sent him but if he pretends to be a priest they might make him prove it," Daniel finished.
"He won?" Modo asked.
"First one in the ten years it had been running," Daniel agreed. "He got a box that spewed money and a few bras because he had been thinking about the slayer shopping trips when he opened it." Jack fell onto the floor laughing. "It also gave him freakish luck. He walked past a slot machine and it went off with no one playing it." Sam cackled. "It even spread to Dean and Sam since we had sent the trio together. I am not letting those three go together again. He can go with Tony." He pulled back up his book but Caldwell cleared his throat. "Nearly there?"
"We're entering orbit now." Sam returned to her duties. "Is there a frequency we should use?"
Throttle came up to use the comm system. "Freedom Fighter base, this is Throttle in an unidentified Asgardian ship. Anyone copy? I've got food and medicine for this sickness." He let go of the button, waiting.
"Throttle?" a tired sounding voice asked. "Prove it's you."
He smiled. "Rimfire, don't make me paddle your tail like I did when you were five." Modo laughed. "Where are you guys?"
"Mons. Under the west shadow in the caves."
"Be there in about ten." He hung up and pointed. "There. The west shadow is on the other side." They nodded and moved the ship that way, keeping it in orbit above it. They got sent down and he walked up to the guards. "Hey. We know what's causing the sickness. We have medicine and food for it." They sighed in relief. "I even brought the diplomats."
"Dude, you went to politicians?" one asked.
"They had the ship and the food." They sent down cases. "The ones marked MRE are individual meals. There's enough there for nineteen hundred people to eat for a year." That got a grin. "Another one's water. The grass has some sort of fungal or mold contamination from the drought this year. That's what it is." He held up a bottle. "One pill should cure it. If it doesn't in eight hours, give a pill after twelve."
"From the first pill?" Throttle nodded, handing it over. "How many doses do we have?"
"Three thousand. Just in case. They'll last for two years. With this, you can burn the grasses and start over." They nodded, going to help lift the crates into the base. Vinnie and Modo did too. He nodded at the two guys helping. "These are Daniel Jackson and Jack O'Neill. The two ambassadors."
"We've heard," a female voice said. "Thank you."
"Not a problem," Daniel said. "This is what we do for peaceful peoples who only need some help." He handed over the list. "The doctors we asked said this is how your blood reacts to certain human medicines. We took extra while we tested for a cure." She smiled at the list. "We included aspirin and penicillin since those are probably the most needed." She looked at him. "Jack's running the SGC. I'm running DCIS. Come to us if you need more help. Call them and they'll come to us."
She nodded, shaking his hand. "I can do that. Thank you."
Jack grinned. "You guys fought long and hard from what we heard."
"Stupid cartoon," she muttered.
He shrugged. "It happens. It let us identify them fairly quickly and not doubt them. Also, the president said if you guys could find a place, a small enclave could be formed. That might help some. I don't know. After the last few years they'd think you were fuzzy, harmless demons."
"Some might so they didn't have to deal with hardships." Throttle nodded. "You could stay."
"You can't afford to feed the people you have, much less our bigger appetites since we've been eating whenever we want down there. It's better if we stay and set up a place for others to come when they need to get away or need to live."
She nodded. "It is. Those conditions are better. We might send some of the children until they're grown."
He nodded. "We'd love them like they're our own," Vinnie promised. Modo nodded too. "If we could set up a way we'd ship food more often."
"There are demons who can create portals and some of them are harmless species," Daniel said. "I don't know if they can get this far or not. I know some can create ones that go to other realms. You might ask around and see what their rate is. The one we have who can do stable portals is still learning and you saw her scaring the other aliens earlier."
"We'll consider it," Throttle agreed, smiling at them. Modo took off running to hug an older mouse. "His mother."
"Family is important to most species," Daniel said. He grinned a bit. "Most of the few it isn't important to, we don't like."
Throttle grinned. "Would Xander say that?"
"Yeah. He's the whole family for the slayers. Then he brought in John and the boys to be big brothers. He'd definitely agree." He watched Modo come back. "She can come visit."
"I know. Make sure people take what they need, Carbine. We can't lose too many more and survive."
"I will. Children, pregnant women, and elderly first." He nodded "Thank you."
"Not an issue," Jack promised. "Every now and then even we have to ask for help." She nodded and headed back into the caves. "Are we dropping off the other guys before going home?"
"Did we bring them?" Daniel asked. "I don't remember loading them."
"I thought we did." They all transported back up and he looked at Caldwell. "Get everything off?"
"Everything but the prisoners. Carter got us hailed by one of them and they agreed to take them home since it's their folks. She sent over the charge sheet."
"They'll be punished," Throttle promised. "They're like that too." That got a nod and they went to meet up with the other ship, passing off the prisoners and the dead bodies. Then it was time to go home.
Stella looked up as someone knocked on her door. "Who is it?" She had only been back for two hours. It couldn't be Mac checking on her yet.
"Me," one of the girls called. She went to answer it. "Um, Stella, can we treat you like we do Abby, like a big sister?"
"Sure. I don't mind." She let her inside. "Need to talk about boys and things?"
"Other girl things. I love Abby but she babbles and I can't understand some of it." She blushed. "I kinda turned into more of a girl tonight."
"Ah, that problem. Period?" She blushed brighter and nodded. "It's not so bad."
"The other girls are on medicine. They said to expect I'd need some too."
"Slayer blood draws bad things." She looked at her. "They said that means we have to have an exam with Doctor House or Chase. I'm not sure I want to do that."
"It's not so bad. A bit embarrassing but not bad." She sat her down to go over what happened during it and what that all meant. The girl even made her promise to go with her. She called Chase to let him know they'd need to do one tomorrow. He told her when to bring her in and then left to check on Annabelle. They talked about boys and those things for another few hours then John came looking for her for bedtime. She waved and promised to meet her tomorrow. Stella gave John a look, getting a shrug back. She decided to take the question she had to a higher source. Wesley was outside with Binky trying to be adorable. The unicorn trotted over to get petted from her too. "I was coming over." She sat down beside him. "Meredith started her cycle," she said quietly.
"As do most of them," he said with a small smile. "Thankfully she'll age out of her powers as well."
"Good to know. Why do they have to go on the pill immediately?"
"Slayer blood is a highly sought after commodity. It's happened that one girl drew demons for ten miles around with hers back in the old days. When this solution was mentioned, we did check to make sure it wasn't going to harm them any but it does help. It also calms down some of the more aggressive tendencies some of the girls can have now and then. It's mostly a matter of their safety."
"What happens if they scrape their knees rollerblading?"
He smiled. "Bandaids are applied and the areas washed off as soon as possible. We've had demons coming here to get some of the girls who were bleeding from small injuries. Especially after the invasion. They no longer try here but the mall is still an open area; even with chaperones it could and has almost happened. Dean got the last one I believe. It's not ideal but we would rather they not have to fight off everything every month. It would get tiring to them."
"I can see that reasoning but right away? The body takes time to adjust."
"Yes but the demons don't care if they're on their first or their thirty-first." He smiled gently. "Annabelle bleeding earlier nearly drove the demon dogs we have in the guard unit into a frenzy. Brenda got scraped by George once and they tried to knock her down to lick her. Even the most harmless demon can be affected."
"Basically. The old lines didn't care about it. They decided the girl could fight off whatever came. When Xander suggested this I checked into it thoroughly before giving him an answer. The health department nurses agreed it was fine to do even at their ages. That if the bleeding was going to be a problem, stopping it would be the best issue. They recommend the girls still have about four a year but most of them only want two and we make sure they have at least two. They don't leave the base those days but we do make sure of it. We're not like the old line. Their health and welfare is our highest priority. That's why we do treat them as if they're perfectly normal little angels in a normal home life. Otherwise they'd still be taking classes on base. None of the girls would be allowed to date. Nothing like that."
She nodded. "I can see the necessity but what about the older girls who want kids?"
"They age out at twenty-three. We've checked the one who already aged out; she can't be told as any different than a normal girl. We've only lost one since all the girls were called and she wasn't here. She was one of the ones we didn't get to in time. We lost her to a car accident really." She smiled at that. "We would love nothing better than for them to have children when they're ready. Before then, I doubt many of them are ready. The girl who we rescued from Sudan already had some before she was called. We do know most slayers do not carry well due to the calling and the fighting. So we'd have to retire them from the field. That is a situation we'll deal with when it's time."
"What happens if one of the girls slips up?"
"Then we'll deal with that also. We have had a few who missed some pills and started off again. One of them drew every demon in the county. She was not happy when George nuzzled her that whole day whenever he found her."
"I guess that's okay then. I'll warn Calleigh in case any of the girls come to her."
"Thank you. It is rather difficult to talk to them about some things. Abby has done a wonderful job."
"So Meredith said." She stood up. "Thanks, Wesley. Good night, Binky." Binky pouted at her. "What? I just got in." The unicorn nuzzled her so she sat down to pet her some more. "You're worried about Annabelle, huh?" Wesley looked startled. "The guard said she was protecting her."
"You know where Doctor Chase works?" he asked the animal. She nodded. "Annabelle is in there, Binky." She headed that way. "She'll go visit. Annabelle has adopted all the pets around here. Including the stray base cats. George stayed because he loved her too." He stood up. "Have a good night."
"You too." She went to talk to Calleigh since she saw her getting out of the jeep. "Hey."
"Hey. How was your case?"
"Mine was furry things needed help to settle a domestic 'who's the daddy' dispute." She smiled. "They were adorable."
"That's cool. Better than slime. Got ten?" She nodded and Stella helped her carry her bags up to her apartment while they talked about the girls. Calleigh sighed but said she understood why. So if any of the girls came to her, she'd be warned.
Chase looked up at the clicking noises in the hall, frowning until a horn, followed by a gray nose walked in, leading the rest of the unicorn. "No pets in the infirmary," he ordered patiently. Binky made threatening motions with her horn before going to check on Annabelle. She was asleep when she nuzzled her hand so she moved to Xander. He instinctively petted her even though he was asleep. She stepped back then jumped up with him, settling down to lay against his front since he was on his side. He continued to pet her in his sleep and it was nice. Chase stared, then shook his head slowly. "You shouldn't be in here or on the beds." He hadn't heard the unicorns growl before but it was probably a bad sound so he backed off. He called his boss. "House, bring me a camera? Visitors." He hung up and finished the charts for the day and made a new note on Meredith's chart as well.
House stomped in, camera in hand. He looked then he took pictures. Chase snickered. "Out, Binky." She growled at him. Xander growled too. He swatted him. "Stop it." He looked down into the deep blue eyes. "You're not allowed in here. Your horn could cause other injuries. Your fur too. You can see them tomorrow." She snuggled in better and gave him a smug look. "Don't make me lift you, pony." She swung her horn around when he tried. He glared. "Off the bed, Binky." She gave him a smug look. Digger came trotting in and sniffed Annabelle, making her sniffle back. He nuzzled her hand and it was better.
"Don't even think about it, Digger," Chase warned. "She's not supposed to and you may not be up on the bed." He got up and came over. "Besides, we'll have to check her and that means leaning over you." It nuzzled her hand then left again. He looked at Binky. "Off the bed." She made the same motion with her horn.
"I think that's 'up yours' in unicorn speech," Daniel said from the doorway. "Can't be certain though." He came in to look at her. "No pets on the beds. You have a nice barn that they built for you." She wiggled and Xander flipped the blanket over her, shifting some. He flipped onto his other side, dragging her, making her squeal a bit but she settled in better and it was fine with her. "He's stronger than I am."
"Me too," House admitted. They stared for a minute.
"Squirt gun like you do with a cat?" Chase suggested.
"Might work. I was thinking about calling Cuddy and letting her talk to Binky." The other men looked at him. "She's a cranky dragon, Binky should understand that." They groaned, shaking their heads. "I don't know if water will help. It might wake the kid instead."
"Shut up," Anna mumbled. "Too noisy. Slay you."
"Sorry," Chase said, going over to tuck her back in. She snuggled in better and fell back into a deep sleep. He grinned. She was adorable. House shook his head and took another picture of the boy and unicorn. "Ask John?"
"Why?" Daniel asked.
"They listen to him. Or Abby."
"Call John," House said. Dean came in instead. "He sent you?"
"Yup." He looked at Binky, then shook his head. "Binky, he loves you but he needs to sleep. He'll end up rolling on top of you. Get down?" She snorted and put her head down on Xander's arm. "C'mon, Binky. Or Dad said Annabelle can't play for a few days."
She glared. "Think John could get her moved?" House asked.
"No," Dean admitted. "Sam either. Gibbs maybe." House paged him and he came down to try. Dean waved a hand. "Won't listen to me."
Gibbs looked at her. "Get off the bed. Before your hooves hurt him and he has to stay longer." She glared and snuggled in. "No. Down. Now, unicorn." She snorted and when he came over she tried to horn him. He did manage to swat her on the tail and make her jump down. "Thank you!" He walked off shaking his head.
She huffed and looked then jumped back up. He let her snuggle and it was good again.
"We can swat too," Dean assured her. She tried to stab him with the horn again. "Fine. Whatever. If Anna's feelings are hurt in the morning that's all on you."
"With the broken bones there's no way we want her on Anna's bed," Chase told him. "Too much pressure in the wrong spots could warp the bones from healing straight."
"Fine," House said. "Xander doesn't have any open wounds at the moment. If she causes one I'm shaving her bald." The unicorn shrank down under the blankets so only her horn was exposed. He walked off shaking his head. Dean caught the elevator with him. "Remember sanity?" he asked as the doors closed.
"Not really. I was only four."
House sighed, shaking his head. "Maybe Wilson will kidnap me home."
"When is your contract up?"
"Next month." They got off the elevator and headed for their apartments to sleep. Chase had duty tonight. House would have cranky morning people to snark back at.
Horatio came into the infirmary the next morning. "Chase, do you have any bandaids? I managed to get a woefully bleeding papercut. If I don't cover it, Alexx will know from her office in town and show up to nag."
He found one for him. "Here you go. Take Binky with you?"
"Let's go," he ordered. "Go use the outside and eat." She grumbled but went to do that. "Thank you." He looked at him. "Why was she on Xander's bed?"
"He needed a cuddle," Anna said, pouting.
"It would've hurt your broken bones more," Chase told her.
"Fine. Whatever." She was still pouting. Digger came in and she cuddled him when he hopped up. "I love you too, Digger."
House walked in. "Not this again. Out, Digger!" He hopped down and trotted off. "She can see you in a few days. You can visit but not be on the beds. Tell your mate that too!" He shut the door, looking at Horatio. "Exam?"
"Papercut so Alexx wouldn't psychically know and come fuss." He finished applying the bandaid. "Thank you." He walked out, heading up to find a seat. The new table was in so he took one there by Calleigh and Ryan. "Eric still asleep?"
"Been in and gone for his run," Calleigh said with a smile. "Papercut?"
"I don't want Alexx to have to fuss. I also got to help shoo Binky out of the infirmary. She decided Xander needed cuddled."
Ryan snickered. "I'm sure he'll deny that."
"We have it on film," Chase said as he walked in. "Stayed in all night, no matter what we tried." He sat down to dig into his breakfast. He looked at the girls' table, seeing two. "What's wrong?"
"Sick," Dawn said, sniffling.
He checked her forehead. "Go back to bed."
"Yes, Chase." She finished up and went back to bed. The other was Meredith and she had an appointment.
He looked at Meredith. "Want me or House?"
"I don't know," she said, looking miserable. He smiled. "Will he make stupid comments?"
"I'll swat him if he does," Stella assured her.
"Then I guess it'd be okay if he did it. That way you can nap. I know Xander probably drove you nuts all night."
"No, Binky did. She was on his bed most of the night."
She grinned at that image. "That sounds cute."
"It is." She smirked. "Go down whenever you're ready." She nodded and finished breakfast. Stella went with her. They wouldn't be doing more than the cursory exam this time. Not like they had to scrape for disease testing. He finished up and went to bed. His laptop's alarm was ringing so he looked. "Have to get the others tomorrow," he said, resetting it for tomorrow. Then he went to bed. He was tired. Arguing with a unicorn was not productive.
House looked over as Meredith walked in. "What's up?" he asked.
He nodded. "We can handle that. Still going?" She nodded. "It's not that bad. I see you have a chaperone."
"She needs someone to hold her hand," Stella told him.
"That's fine. Some of the girls do, some don't." He pointed at the exam area. "I'm sure you know the drill." She nodded, taking her that way. House checked on his patients to give her time to get into the exam gown and lay down. Then he found gloves to put on while he walked that way. Stella gave him a look. "What?" He closed the curtain and tied it off. "Just in case." She nodded. "Now, you started when?"
"Late yesterday night," she said weakly. "This is really bad feeling."
He nodded. "It can be but you only have to have it once a year until you get pregnant. Most years we'll be scraping to check for diseases but since you're your age and haven't had sex yet, we don't have to." She nodded at that too. He got what he needed and came over. "How are we doing on breast development?"
"Barely coming in and I went over how to do a self check," Stella told him.
"That's good. Another important thing."
"Every girl got it before school started," he assured her. She smirked at that, nodding a bit. "We had to make sure they had all their vaccines so we slipped it into that." He pulled a stool over so he could be at the right height. "Okay, relax. It's going to be some pressure." She hissed when he opened the speculum. "Like I said, pressure."
"Sorry, kiddo." He looked then he frowned. "Meredith, did you ride horses or anything when you were younger?"
"The watchers, let us do fun stuff?" she snorted.
He removed the speculum and came up to look at her. "Bad question but did he touch you?"
She whimpered. "My first one did but my second one shot him and took me from him," she said, giving him a begging look.
"It's not your fault. Just making sure since I noticed you weren't totally pure."
"I wondered why I couldn't pet Digger." She pouted.
"It's not a big thing. You're better now and if you need to talk about that stuff, we do have the base shrink." She nodded at that, letting him go back to the exam. He ended up rinsing a bit of tissue to take a scraping anyway, just in case. Then he checked over everything in her abdomen by pressing gently. "Feels like you're okay so far." He took off his gloves. "Go ahead and sit up." She did that. "All right. We have some things to talk over." She nodded. "You know that most of the girls are on the pill?" She nodded. "Do you know why?"
"Because our blood draws bad things."
"Exactly." He smiled just a bit. "There's a few options. Do you think you can remember to take a pill every day?"
"I can't remember to take a shower every day."
"Do you think you can remember to change a patch once a week?"
She shrugged. "I don't know. Maybe?"
"Then let's try that method. You'll have to put it somewhere you can't soak it off." She nodded at that. He went to get the starter box and bring it back. "All right, this is your patch set. It goes on like this," he said, applying the first one to her rear shoulder. "You want it somewhere you won't be soaking but not somewhere someone will ask about it."
"I have to change in gym class. I'm the only slayer in there."
He considered it. "If someone has a problem or tries to pick on you, tell the teacher and then us," Stella told her. She nodded. "If the teacher does it, you tell Xander."
"Yes, Stella." She gave her a hug. "I feel kinda nasty."
"That's the slick stuff we had to use," House told her. "It'll clean up pretty easily. The patch gets changed once a week. When you need a new box, you come see us. See how there's this odd colored patch?" She nodded. "Don't use that, go to the next box for four months. Then you can use one of those. That's when your cycle should start. If it starts any other time we need to know." She nodded at that. "It also means you have to take security precautions."
"Good. Now, anything else we need to talk about?"
"Will boys mind that?"
"No. Someone might say something but there's a lot of ways to lose the hymen. Horseback riding can, falling the wrong way on your bicycle can. Doing what the girls up the hall from you do can." She smiled. "You're not old enough for boys yet anyway so don't worry about that question."
"Yes, House. Any other precautions?"
"Nope. You can go take a hot bath until the girls get home if you want." He wrote out her excuse for her absence. "There you go. Go have chocolate to celebrate." She smiled so he left her with her 'big sister' and went to make notes on her chart and start those scrapings running through the processor so they could for abnormal cells or diseases. Just in case. He doubted whichever watcher had saved her had thought about it. Xander woke with a snort. "Go back to sleep," he called.
Meredith came out redressed, going over to hug him. "Good morning, Xander."
"Morning," he grumbled. "Why aren't you in school?"
"Ah." He gave her a hug. "It's a long road on the way to adulthood. Don't rush it." She nodded, letting him fall back asleep. She walked out with Stella to get a treat and talk some more. If she didn't have a lot of paperwork to do. She only had to do the report so she helped and talked with her at her desk for a while since most everyone was off doing something in the gym. The new people had to learn how to use a sword and the usual PT too.
House walked up to where Wesley was, tapping him and nodding for him to follow. Wesley followed him into the hall. "Meredith's had two watchers?" he asked.
"One rescued her and shot the old one."
"Oh, dear. Harming her?" House nodded. "Is it pertinent now?"
"It may need to be talked about with the base shrink. Fortunately he didn't pass on anything that I could find."
"If she needs it of course she will. Anything I should be concerned about?"
"She's on the patch."
"She is a bit scatter minded," he said with a small smile. "That's fine. If that doesn't work, talk to one of us." He nodded so Wesley went back to his seat, stopping to give her a hug. "Do you have any other questions?"
"No, Stella did really good talking to me."
"Good . If you do, you can come to me as well. I might not be as good at it but I'll try."
"Yes, Wesley." She dug in, blushing at the look Marian gave her. "What?"
"First exam with Doctor House," she said quietly.
She grinned. "It'll be okay. They only happen once a year. We all have them." She nodded. "If you need it, you can talk to us older girls too. We went through it not that long ago."
"Okay. Can we change topics?"
"Sure. Dawnie has an admirer."
Dawn looked at her, shaking her head. "Dawn has someone she's tutoring. He doesn't want in my panties. He's got a cheerleader for that."
Marian gave her a look. "You sure?"
"Yup. Unless he's in it for the count. Even then, he's dating and I'm not that trashy."
"Good." Wesley smiled. "That is a good thing."
Dawn looked at him. "Freaked?"
"Slightly. Have you told your sister?"
"Yup. Talk about freaked. Ten page complaint about what assholes boys are." He laughed and nodded. "Told me I couldn't date until I pointed out my age and she had Angel tied up and evil by my age. She let it go again. So we're okay. Giles is probably polishing his glasses but oh well."
"We've talked with our teachers?" Wesley asked.
"Yup, all the time."
"They know of this boy?" he pressed.
"They know more about the hotty young sorcerer out there," she said with a smirk. "He likes to hit on me." Brenda gave her a look. "John, you need to quit turning Brenda into such a Winchester. She just gave me the same 'my underwear's too tight' look you usually give when we talk about boys."
He gave her the look too. "Do your teachers like that sorcerer?"
"Leo doesn't like his family. Thinks he'll turn out the same. Piper's wary. Phoebe says he's cute. Paige likes him, says he's cute and smart. They all said it's up to him to choose his own path and to be wary of what he might want to do with me, but otherwise they're all for him."
"Who's his family?" Brenda demanded.
"There's a few chaos people."
She shuddered. "Is he using it?"
"No. Right now he's conjured an earth elemental spirit to help him with his herb garden and to learn from him." They all gaped. "He's not being mean. The spirit tells him how to take care of the plants magically and not. If he was being mean I'd never talk to him. I don't date things that hurt other beings. I asked the spirit and it says he's nice and learns very well from him."
"Does your sister or Xander know about *him*?" John asked.
"Nope. The next time they're local I was going to introduce him. We're only friends. He's not being pushy or anything. So far he flirts but that's it. I haven't accepted more than a cup of coffee from him."
"Good!" Wesley agreed.
She rolled her eyes. "I thought Buffy was going to be the one panicking about me dating."
He gave her a look. "With who and what you are, it is possible that someone with that sort of power has either an attraction to you because of your power or his power is seeking a mate of equal power," he said quietly.
"We went over power attraction, Wes. We also talked about slimebags who want me for what I can do. I promise, if he shows any signs of it, I'm dumping him and snubbing him forever."
"Very well then." He looked at her. "At least you're being a sensible girl about such matters. Some girls are all twitter and flutter and don't pay a bit of attention to reality."
"I'm sure that was a compliment," she teased.
She smirked. "Fine. Thank you, Wesley. Where is Xander?"
"Catching up on some much needed sleep in the infirmary. Now that Binky's not on his bed it's been rather good for him all day."
"I'm sure they're amused down there." She shrugged, spotting someone in the doorway. "Ryan, head's up." Ryan looked up and Alexx walked in to give him a hug. She looked at the lesbian couple. "How are you two doing? Since we're on relationships and all."
"We're good," Amber said with a grin. "Very good."
Her girlfriend Kim looked at her, then shrugged. "It's not bad but the quirks are starting to come out. She never cleans."
"I'm happy with how my room is. We can spend more time in yours if you want. Though you're taking down all the boyband posters."
"I can do that."
"I want them," Meredith said.
"Sure," she agreed, smiling at her. "We can do that." She looked at Dawn. "Need one?"
"Why? If I need one, I can go surfing for one and print it out." The others smiled at that and nodded. "Want my can of air freshener? It smells like someone's mildewed socks from your room, Amber."
"Please," she said with a small blush. "Usually I have Anna help me."
"She'll be on crutches for weeks yet," Wesley told her.
"I know." They finished up and went back to the dorm to get that room cleaned up and refreshened. John walked in when the air freshener got too strong and opened a window, walking off shaking his head. "It's cold," Amber called after him.
"Sorry." She turned on her fan to blow all the bad air out the window and then went to her girlfriend's room instead. They took down the racy posters to hand off then snuggled while doing homework on the bed until they drifted off together over Algebra.
Speed looked around his apartment. It was clean, which was a nice change. It'd be good enough for Alexx. He went to let her, Ryan, H, Calleigh, and Eric in. "See, I can clean when I'm on base."
"You tried very hard, sugar," Alexx promised, pinching him on the cheek. She came in to dust on him but he only rolled his eyes. They settled around to get comfortable with each other again. Speed went to make something to snack on but that was all right. Up the hall, Danny was doing the same with Mac and Stella. Their first case had creeped Mac out and had gotten Stella mad at a demon for messing up her clothes. Danny was calming them down. His team had furry things doing a Springer Show redo. It had been a bit funny until they turned it into a war. Now they were watching tv and nibbling. "What was going on with the girls?" she asked Ryan.
"Dawn found a boy she likes near where her teachers are. They were nagging her to make sure he had good intentions since he uses magic too and has some questionable family. Her teachers sound like they're watching it but he might be okay for her. More disliking his family than him. Meredith had her first girl appointment so they were talking with her. Amber and Kim are together so Dawn was teasing them about how Amber doesn't like to clean. They were doing that tonight. Xander's still in the infirmary taking a nap. Binky spent the night with him last night on his bed, pissing off the docs a bit. The usual small talk at dinner."
"At least they're not having to hand back underwear this time," Speed said dryly.
Ryan laughed. "It's slowed down."
"Mostly. There's still the corps of perverts."
Alexx gave him a look. "Some of the girls?"
"Yeah, some of them still panty raid," Speed assured her. She rolled her eyes. "Now and then the guys have to go do a room inspection to take back our underwear, confiscate the skin mags, all that. Most of the worst offenders hide them with the girls who're together because John doesn't check their stuff for contraband."
"I remember when all you had to worry about was smoking," she sighed, shaking her head.
"You still do. Sam got one girl he caught bumming one off a guard. Her yelp you heard by the barn when he swatted her. Then she got a long talk with John about how it's bad for her training and then she got to talk with House about the bad things that happen to a body that smokes. Last time I saw, she was sneaking some chewing tobacco instead and I turned her in to Chase. He'll go over it again."
Alexx shook her head. "Those poor girls."
"They're treated pretty normally. It's what we'd do for our kids," Ryan told her.
Calleigh nodded. "It seems to be. They used to all take classes here on base until Xander went on a 'they have to have a normal life' kick and got them enrolled."
"That was planned all along but some of the girls had very poor educations," Speed told her. "Brenda could barely read when she got here. Her watcher kept her out of school whenever he could for training reasons. A few of the other girls were far behind. All us guys stepped in to help with those. Especially once Sam got there to take over that and Demonology lessons. We took them with him, helped with the ESL classes for those girls who speak other languages and Watcher's Latin. We were working in other classes at least once a week. A few of the girls hadn't had science at all. Abby was teaching that. When cases started to pick up, Xander moved to step two, which was getting them into the local school. He had planned to give them another couple of months to hopefully get them up to age standards. A few made it."
She smiled. "Their exams?"
"Necessary. Brenda was walking through a mall sucking on a papercut she got in the bookstore getting a new graphic novel and three demons tried to pounce her by one of the food stalls." She gaped. He nodded. "Slayer blood is strong and it calls out to them. It's protecting them. I'm guessing one of the girls started?"
"Meredith. Stella went with her."
"That's cool. She's almost thirteen if I remember right so she's about on track. How did you guys like your first sword lessons?"
"Not a lot of fun," Calleigh admitted. "And it was a machete lesson."
"Xander teaches sword work, Wesley can fence," Ryan told her. "Dean doesn't usually use anything bigger than a machete because he can't conceal it. It points back to their different ways of training and hunting. The guys use guns a lot more than Xander used to. Xander knows artillery though. Who is over the armory?"
"Xander," Speed said. "He was making bullets to keep away the nightmares the other night." Ryan leaned out to look down the couch at him. "He was. I think he's having more vision nightmares but he won't talk with anyone. I think John's about to stop that though."
"Good. We need Xander. Xander's the glue that holds the agency together sometimes."
"Jack wants Danny back. That would put Tony in charge," Speed warned.
"The president said Xander may not be in charge. He can't talk to the press and he doesn't put forth a good public image because he's a bit scruffy now and then. Plus he threatened to have a reporter eaten when she broke into his room in Vegas to see if him having a dinner with Hodges to recruit him was him having dinner with Hodges for other reasons."
"I heard Hodges filed a complaint with the station and had sent over the preliminary paperwork to sue her for defamation of character," Eric said. "I talked with Warrick the other day and he told me. He also said Grissom was growling at the attempted poaching and Ecklie was fuming about it not being on his shift instead."
Calleigh shook her head. "Sometimes I feel so sorry for those boys. Grissom doesn't do people very well. Ecklie's a puss sucker worse than Stetler ever could be. Catherine's nominally in charge but she's got her own cases. Poor Greg must be getting it now and then."
Eric smirked. "Warrick said Ecklie tried to get Greg back into the lab. Greg, who had just pulled a double, told Ecklie to jump off or he was going to have him eaten. After all, he knew just where ones that would do it are. Ecklie went to find a priest and hide in his office."
Horatio smiled. "Not very polite."
"No, but very effective. Eckie's an attention whore," Speed said. Ryan moaned. "No, yours is you can't shut up in front of your ex. That's why I nearly shot her during our last case down there."
"She's moved to LA."
"Warn me if she shows up again," Speed ordered.
"Good. Why did she move to LA?"
"More news. Better paycheck. Closer to the national networks."
"Ah." He grimaced. "Still dumb."
"Very. Did you hear our profiler blew up and screamed at someone during the dragon thing? He was the only liaison in DC and everyone kept bothering him during a case they were working on so he ended up losing his temper majorly. His whole team came down on the agents that kept bothering him and got them fired with prejudice."
Speed smirked. "I like the BAU guys. Spenser's a nice kid. He's the one who suggested Tony get Greg from what I remember. Him blowing up sounds a bit out of character."
"They had a homicide ring," Ryan told him. Speed shuddered. "So he had a bad case, plus idiot agents who wouldn't leave him alone to work. Pity."
"Very. Tony's friend at the FBI have fun with them?"
"Yup. Gibbs heard and called him. They're blacklisted for having *no* sense. They tried to come back after he screamed at them."
"Idiots," Speed agreed.
"Very," Horatio agreed. "The BAU team with Agent Hotchner in charge?" The boys nodded. "I've worked with him. The liaison is Doctor Reed?"
"Yup. Tony tried to get him here full time but he's our liaison and profiler on call if we need it for sacrificial stuff. We handed over a cult case to them a few months back. They were on their way back from a case and popped in. It was one of those 'there's cases from the same people on a few different desks from a few different cities' sort of killer. Totally human, made up language that looked slightly arcane so they kicked it to us."
"I had another of those the other day," Ryan said with a frown. "The arcane was something strange and no one could find it. Dawn looked over my shoulder and flipped the picture around. Thomas identified it and got me a resource. That man is THE librarian of the universe. Like Sam's a research god."
They all smiled at that.
"I had a research case hit my desk today," Eric admitted. "Tony talked me through it since he sent it from his present case. Sam's a lot of help."
"He is," Ryan agreed. "So are most of the guys. Wesley is whenever it hits his area of expertise and he doesn't lecture on it like Giles used to when you went to him about something."
"I'd like more lab work," Calleigh admitted.
"I like the research cases and half the time the lab work comes with it," Ryan told her. "Or we're borrowing a lab somewhere on a field case. Team or not. That's why it was a rule to have a CSI on each team."
"I remember taking over your job as Xander's CSI," Speed said dryly. "The first time I handed him a report he gave me such a confused look and asked me how this helped him kill the demon trying to eat the rest of us."
"Xander told me the first time I gave him one that science was an evil language and he didn't go for evil languages, only good demon ones," Ryan joked. "I learned to give him details instead of reading it to him or helping him understand what it said. I tried for four weeks to explain those things to him."
"I thought we used the jail," Alexx said.
"We do, but Xander's team is the one you send out for the bad things," Speed told her. "Anything too deadly that might need to be hunted instead of arrested. Anything to do with weapons. Anything you might have to call a slayer in to deal with, we send Xander's team on. Like the last one was a demon that even if we could arrest it, it would've disappeared within days and went back to eating people. Anything that has to be hunted, Xander gets sent on. Also most cult cases because of the way he looks at the world. That's why his team got sent to Miami and would've been sent even if everyone were back on base. Something that big is going to require hunting skills and that's what Xander trained as. Not that I minded. He protects his team. I learned a lot about demon hierarchies from him. Half the demons are scared of him because his rep is 'I'll get you if you make me'."
"Especially if you touch the girls," Horatio agreed. "During the Miami clan war, one of them went after Faith and Kennedy. Xander got told by one of the other snitches trying to bring the slayers down to stomp on all the clans so they could move up in the standings. Xander went there, got the three demons who were being problems, glared at the rest, laid down the law that they were there only for the clan war unless they ran into vampires, then went back to the safe house. When I asked, the demons said they all knew not to mess with the girls. Killing a slayer may happen in a battle but the slayers don't pick their battles unless they find a bad thing or a one hunting. The vampires who attack anyway are stupid and if one of the girls falls, every demon everywhere expect to mourn that one when Xander gets there. I asked about Dean's team when he came down and I heard about their rep too. Fire and shotguns."
"Basically. They handled a lot more spirit manifestations than demons. Any of the demons they handled were highers, not the lower class ones like we see. The ones that make deals, do possessions, those things. John taught the boys well and they were a force to be reckoned with," Speed agreed. "Xander's been known to be Buffy's backup and there were plenty who didn't discount him like Buffy and Willow did a few times. Xander has 'pull a plan out of my ass' syndrome." Ryan snickered at that. "He does but it's usually the right thing to do. Even when it is a weapon. That's why we all learn some sword work. In case we have to."
"I'm so glad I learned some," Ryan agreed. "Danny had to beat dragons of with his. He said he'd quit complaining about having to do it."
Speed nodded. "Me too." Alexx gave him an odd look. "There were still creatures over there when we got displaced. Plus I've had to decapitate a vampire in the past to get it off someone." She shuddered. "Ninety percent of everyone else's cases end in an arrest. That vampire wasn't the case, he jumped out and attacked the team one night. Fifty percent of Xander's teams cases end in an arrest. Usually multiple arrests. Plus he's listening to Giles' crap and dealing with the stuff that Wesley and Dean don't. Plus he's been helping with the research by identifying species. I'm going to nudge Thomas to assign someone else to do that. Dean's taking over some duties and John's taking over some of the admin stuff for the girls. Wesley's taken back the checkbook finally."
"The boy does too much," Alexx complained.
"And he's not dumping stress either," Eric said. "I heard the limping doctor say he was still holding it in."
"That's Doctor House. He's my earlier prototype," Speed said dryly. They all laughed at that. "He's a diagnostician."
"Who has a pill problem," Horatio said with a small frown.
"The reason he limps is because he lost a lot of muscle tissue in his leg, H. He's in a shitload of pain. Even if he's addicted, it's not affecting his job. If it did, Jackson would kick his ass."
"Good to know."
"Danny's a lot tougher than he looks," Ryan warned. "His last project had a lot of problems. He's seen some combat. He's very much a guy that'll do what's necessary."
"He's like Xander's PhD clone?" Eric suggested.
Speed nodded. "Basically. Not that Xander's dumb. He's not book smart but he's very street and people smart. He probably would've made a good cop."
"I've barely interacted with him," Calleigh admitted. "I heard he joked about being an idiot savant with weapons."
"He can do more than that but you might offer to help with the armory inventory he has to do next month," Speed said dryly.
"Sure, I can do that. Why do we have the locker system?"
"Benny Ray knew that Tony hired a lot of CSIs, who aren't always comfortable with their guns. He and Ryan made sure they stayed clean, had ammo, all that. Wolfe went to have OCD fits in there and drove him out a few times."
"He forgave me."
"I'm sure he did," Speed agreed. "He's a nice guy. He and Sheppard are helping Cordette since they're in Hermosa Beach."
"She's going to be the best weapons slayer ever," Ryan teased.
"She is," Horatio agreed. "I doubt she'll be very girly."
"No. She's very girly and her cat is too," Speed assured him. "They make sure she's a normal girl and this is a training for the future thing. One of the green things got her knocked out and Sheppard took it out," he told Ryan.
"Bump on the head but Don Epps apparently complained she did a replay of Anna's thing at dinner. Don threatened to make the whole family fuss."
"That makes Xander and John both behave," Ryan said smugly. "John's been avoiding the infirmary since the time he got possessed and Dean let five of the girls fuss over him."
"That'd make me stay away too," Speed assured him. Horatio snickered.
Alexx patted him on the head. "I do have fussing rights, Timothy, and if you try to take them away I will tan your hind end," she assured him.
"You too, Ryan Wolfe."
"Yes, Alexx," he agreed with a grin. "So, anyone check in back at home?"
"The Chief is most upset with us," Horatio admitted. "He could see Alexx, possibly me, but to have to replace most of a shift? He's quite upset."
"I didn't ask, do not make him yell at me," Speed ordered. Alexx swatted him. "Hey!"
"Shut up, Timmy." She gave him a hug, even when he made complaining noises. "My boys."
"What do your kids think about the snow?"
"We're insane. Our people came from hot climates, Miami's a nearly tropical place, and their parents moved them where they'll freeze to death soon. They do not like it. Tough but it's still a better school system thanks to the lack of students."
"They were talking about consolidating until all the slayers signed up. They figured the base's people might be having kids some year so they decided to leave the school alone." Speed wiggled free, getting swatted for it. "Sorry, not used to being cuddled."
"Did Tony not find any good female agents?" Calleigh asked.
"He asked about ten from what he told me when I signed on," Ryan told her. "They all said they had too much sense to be messed up in this. Even after the invasion, most of the female agents don't want to come here. I don't know why. I know some of the agents have teamed up." He nodded up the hall, getting a smirk from Horatio for it. "Mac still confused?"
"A bit but he likes them together. He thinks the two slayers together are adorable too."
Calleigh nodded. "They are. Annabelle's the most adorable thing ever too."
Eric laughed. "I heard she could out stubborn Gibbs."
Horatio nodded. "Yes she can. And Xander too."
Alexx snorted. "The babies need more women in their lives."
"Stella and I agreed we could be big sisters and Abby's been doing a lot of that," Calleigh promised with a smile. "John makes a good daddy to the brood with Sam, Dean, and Xander playing bossy big brother. Most of the agents too. Except one of the guys on Xander's team."
"They have macho syndrome. A squishy feeling comes near them and they shoot it," Ryan joked. Alexx moaned, shaking her head. "They do."
"They do," Speed agreed, nodding a bit. Alexx carded her fingers through his hair. "I know, I need a trim. I'm doing that this weekend if we're in town."
"Uh-huh. You are." She smiled at Horatio. "You could use one too."
"I need to find a good one first," he said. "Not just anyone can handle my haircut or the cowlicks I have when it gets too long."
"I noticed it was starting to look a bit wavy in the back," Calleigh teased. He swatted her when she tried to play with it. She smirked. "Not the boss now, Horatio."
"I can still spank you." She giggled.
Someone knocked on the door then leaned in. "Guys, do you have anything to nibble? Stella's got them and ate all my microwave popcorn," Don asked.
"Second cabinet in the kitchen," Speed told him. He grinned and went to get some. "Take the rice cakes. They're sweet."
"Thanks, man. I'll get more later." He walked out, handing them to her. "Here, nibble."
"What does George the shrub eat?" Eric asked.
"A special plant food Abby mixes up. He attacks her for it every now and then like a junkie," Ryan told him. "He's about doubled in size."
"Yes, he used to be a tiny walking shrub," Horatio agreed. Then he shook his head. "I think the time Mac and I showed up he freaked us out more than anything else around here."
"Thankfully you stared from outside his sunny spot," Ryan teased with a smirk.
"Did anyone else hear 'pets for the slayers' and think about George walking one?" Speed asked. Ryan nodded. Eric did too. "Good, then it wasn't just me." He shook his head quickly and Alexx laughed. "They're good pets for the girls. Binky will stab someone if they upset them. George got a few of the girls with his spines during sparring practice. Oh, when it gets cold, he likes to hide in the elevators. It's warm and bright for him. Fair warning."
"I saw that earlier," Eric said, shaking his head slowly. Calleigh gave him a hug. "I pushed the button and nearly jumped before I realized it was him. Though he got off and went to rub against Abby's door until she gave him some more plant food. So maybe he's like a stray cat?"
"Could be," Speed agreed.
"You missed seeing McKay's reaction to Binky and Digger," Ryan told him. "Abby drug him out to introduce them. Binky knocked him down to play with him and he freaked. Tiff had to guard him inside and they ran like they were looking for cover from open gunfire by the pictures she took."
Speed snickered. "He doesn't like the unicorns?"
"Or Eggy from what Jack was saying in the halls earlier."
Speed smirked but shook his head. "I love the scientist part of him but he is a bit annoying now and then. We need more people to do research too."
"I was thinking about that," Ryan admitted. "We all take turns helping with it."
"House's contract runs out next month," Speed told him.
"Chase's too probably. I wonder who we'll have instead."
"No idea. House was supposed to be finding someone they could get instead. That's one of his jobs, to see what we really need for one since we had a half of a trauma team before him."
"I'll ask Chase tomorrow," Ryan decided. "I know their friends are coming out tomorrow."
"They can be freaked out by Binky and Digger too," Speed said dryly.
"Could be. House warned me one was uptight."
Speed nodded. "I can see that. Chase is a bit but some residents are very uptight."
"Chase asked the girls to hit on one of them," Ryan said smugly.
Speed smirked back, then cackled. "Ooh, those poor people."
"We'll get a show since we shouldn't have another team case for at least a week."
"We hope," Speed corrected. "Hope really hard."
"I am." Eric shifted and Ryan looked at him. "Cuddling me?"
"No!" He gave his head a shove. "Shifting so my butt wasn't numb."
"Fine. Maybe I'll hit on Xander."
"Tony said Xander's open to stress relief," Speed said quietly.
"After christening his temple? I'm sure he is," Ryan shot back, giving him a look to make him crack up. "I've never seen anyone who was that exhausted after sex."
"Well, it was nine days of christening his temple and then something attacked so he beat it off, then a higher one wanted some personal time to try to kill him after sleeping with him. He came home after getting away from her."
Ryan shook his head. "I don't need to know."
"He said they made a teaching manual."
"I do well enough without it."
"You think?" Speed asked smugly. "We'd have to ask your exes."
"We could ask your last one," Eric said smugly.
Speed snorted. "They'd say it was good. I'm not worried."
Someone outside screamed and they went to look off the balcony. "Shut up!" Ryan yelled. The screaming stopped. The guards came to remove the woman so they could talk to her. "Need help?"
"We have it, Wolfe. Thank you." The last guard followed her off.
"Wonder whose ex she is," Eric said.
Speed smirked. "Gibbs'." They all laughed all the way back to the couch.
Gibbs stomped into interrogation, looking at the woman in the room. "How did she get out?"
"Don't know, sir, but George got her with a poison dart then waddled off because she was loud."
"I wonder if she still doesn't believe in demons." Daniel came in to join him. "Her."
"The old director. Wonderful." He found his cellphone and called the head of Homeland. "Weren't you going to take care of Jennifer Sheppard for us, sir? Because she's here." He listened to him. "Fine, we'll take care of it." He hung up and walked in there. "Miss Sheppard, I'm Director Jackson." She sneered. He smirked. "Thanks to your very nicely signed threat to my base, you're under arrest."
"You can't do that."
"I can so. Guys?" They came in to cuff her and read her her rights, taking her to the prison. "Put her on the human side." They nodded. He followed, watching her put into her cell and the forcefield turned on. "Thank you." He walked off, leaving her to stare at the demons across the hall from her. She was screaming and ranting about Hollywood stunts but he didn't really care. He ran into Gibbs again. "Don't beg."
"I'm not. She tried to burn my house." Daniel moaned, shaking his head. "You could have put her in the demon or the mixed section."
He let him see her cell. "She can see all sorts of demons, Gibbs. If that doesn't break her delusion, then maybe the base shrink can. We'll put her in front of our judge in the morning."
"Thank you." He walked off even though she had spotted him and screamed his name. He went to the security system to watch over her tonight but they had heard about her. Daniel went back to his apartment. Xander was trying to sneak out of the infirmary. Doing a good job of it too. "Harris is using his ninja skills."
The guard down there called the infirmary. "Sir, are you missing Harris? Gibbs caught him using ninja skills to sneak off. Sure, sir." He hung up. "He'll get him in a bit." They went back to watching her rant and scream. Finally the demons started to yell back and made rude gestures. The guard went down to stop one. "I don't care what you do most of the time but we do not need to see crying inmates. Quit waving it around before I cut if off!" he said hotly. The demon shrank back and put his dick away. "Thank you!"
"What'd she do?" one of the demons called.
"She sent a threat to the base." He walked off. The boss was right to have her confined if the human authorities wouldn't. He saw Chase come in. "She's been in psych from the rumors we heard."
"That's fine. I still need to make sure she's healthy and draw blood." The guard nodded. They walked to the cell. "Ms. Sheppard, I'm Doctor Chase. I'm going to examine you to make sure you're healthy and don't need any medical attention. The guard will be staying but I can get a female one if you'd rather have one. We will be blocking out the cell so none of the other inmates can see." She sneered so he stepped in and the guard did too, blacking out the cell's forcefield. The guard got her sitting on her cot and he checked her over, drawing blood as well. The guard kept her still while he did it. He put everything away and stepped back once the small shot mark was covered. "There we go. Do you have any allergies we might need to be aware of for future medical treatment?" She shook her head, looking pissed. "That's fine then. Food comes in regularly with the guards. If you need help, the tray can be used to hit the blue button just outside your forcefield and they do keep an eye on the prisoners."
"A ten second rotating exposure," the guard agreed. "So do something to let us know, ma'am." They walked out and the shield went back to what it should be. He locked the door behind Chase and went back to security. "She's not happy," he told Gibbs. He showed him how to reprogram it to hover in one cell, getting a nod of thanks. "Chase seemed to think she was healthy."
"She should be. She spent the last ten months at a special, private hospital in DC." He watched her get up to pace and mutter. "Sound?" It was turned up for him. They listened to her make plans. She wasn't doing a whole lot of good planning but she was trying really hard. Gibbs pointed at one thing. "Isn't that a break in?"
"Yup." They went to stop the earth demon that had tunneled in, letting it come out to find itself surrounded at gunpoint. It gave up. The head guard made it seal its own tunnel and then took it to a new cell. Whoever had built the base did a good job making sure it was on rocks that couldn't be tunneled through easily. This was the same earth demon they had in custody already. It wasn't happy. Pity. The guards went back after walking a round of checking in the cells. One stopped to add more food to one of the clan cells so they'd quit nibbling on one of the others in there. The inmate shrugged and did it anyway. He walked off shaking his head. Gibbs was frowning at that cell. "No idea," that guard admitted. "We tried to separate them and they nearly rioted to get back together. That one may've broken a clan rule. They killed the last one who challenged the leader of the gang for dominance."
"Charming," Gibbs said.
"Only in some cultures. Some are nicer. That earth demon's pretty calm, he just hates being stuck in a cell since he was paid to try to break in. He did not like meeting Xander and Dawn with weapons."
"I wouldn't either." He went back to watching Jen stare at the others. She was mumbling about their costumes but oh well. He looked at the cell she was staring at, finding the demon working himself off. She was nearly disgusted but still watching. "Is that a female wing?"
"No. That's temporary holding. The judge is seeing all those tomorrow. He's been on vacation. Then she'll be moved to High Risk and put up there." He pointed at the hanging cells. "That comes with a radio for entertainment and contact with the outside world, a skylight for sun exposure, her own room and bathroom, plus privacy. There's only two others on that ward and they're both assassins and human as well." That got a nod. "The only way up or down is Dawn Summers or a hidden staircase we have to move into place."
"Good to know. So there is safety but she won't be able to incite problems."
"Or have any if she's attacked. One of the darlings up there is up there because the demons thought she was cute and wouldn't leave her alone. We offered and she agreed."
"Jackson was serious about the prisoners being as safe as possible, Gibbs. They don't get much in the way of creature comforts but they're well maintained. Up there, food drops from the ceiling chutes. Along with a week's supply of toilet paper, towels, all that. They have a laundry chute too but it's got a weight sensor and will use forced air to get anything too heavy out." That got a nod. "She'll be fine."
"Good." He stared for a few more minutes then he left. He had to think. His apartment was a good place for that or he could go spiff up the barn a bit more. The kids had done good work on it but there could be some decorative details around the openings and things. The unicorns would let him do whatever he wanted. It was nice of them. It gave him a replacement for his boat.
to part 15