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14 September 2006 @ 04:33 pm
“Mommy is that man a pirate?” Xander grunted slightly in his seat and turned his head to the window trying to fall back asleep. However a small girl with pig tales kept peeking over the back of her seat trying to watch him. “He has an eye-patch but no parrot… maybe he lost his parrot.” The girl added tugging at her mother’s sleeve but was once again ignored. Her mother was asleep herself and had learned to sleep through the continuous questions of a five year old girl.

“Hey mister are you a pirate?” Xander gave up and straightened in his seat as he wiped some drool off his mouth.

“Umm are you talking to me?” Xander asked groggily checking his watch. He would be due in Boston in about a half hour so at least this horribly train ride from hell was nearly over.

“Yes because I once saw a movie and it had pirates in it and they were ‘Arghhh matey I will get your bootey.’” The girl made a hook with her index finger and jabbed at the seat a few times. Xander just smiled, the one nice thing about kids was they never minced words. Sometimes this was preferable to being around adults who avoided eye contact and squirmed a little every time the carpenter adjusted his patch.

“Well I will tell you a secret.” Xander whispered leaning up. “I am a pirate and I am in search of treasure. Do you have any?” The girl nodded as if she was part of this conspiracy and picked up a can of root beer.

“I have this would that be treasure enough?” The girl asked with a small grin.

“Hmm well if you can scrounge up some chips and cookies that would be a mighty good treasure indeed.” The pirate replied really laying it on. It worked though and soon Xander was munching on chips and sipping soda as the train was making its way to the station.

When the train arrived Xander’s legs felt weak and springy from lack of use. He had no idea why he was in Boston or why he had taken the train to get there. Well train was cheaper but still that did not begin to answer the first question.

Still Buffy no longer needed his help and though he had loved Africa it was nice to be somewhere familiar; or at least more familiar than Africa.

(Tag Faith, you can move cordy along and say that the train station is also a airport if you want)
puffy_xandman on September 18th, 2006 09:02 pm (UTC)
The strangling sensation reminded him a bit of Faith, not that she had been Xander’s only encounter with this kind of violence but it had been his first and thus most special. ‘Great five days without Buffy and you get yourself killed. Way to prove you don’t need a slayer to save your ass.’ However just before the tunnel started to form and voices of dead relatives started to call him into the light someone yanked the hands off of him.

It happened so fast all he saw was a flash of brown and a fury of fists. “Kennedy?” Xander asked coughing and gasping for air. Sure it was a lame joke but come one! He had just nearly died so he had to get at least some points.

“You know you did not need to save me.” The one eyed carpenter wheezed taking her hand and pulling himself up to a stand. “See I was waiting till he got tired or bored of trying to kill me and then I would have struck… struck like a viper.” A small smile played on Xander’s face when air had finally filled his lungs and the world stopped spinng.

“Man I have to say one thing about you slayers, greats timing.” He wanted to give his savior a hug because Xander was a huggy type of guy. However despite the fact this brunette once saved him from his virginity did not mean that he had touching privileges so he just continued catching his breath hoping there would not be another attack.
faith lehane: aint life unkindscratchyouout on September 18th, 2006 10:27 pm (UTC)
At the wrong name, brown hues rolled inside pools of white, only half annoyed by his humor. She watched him welcome the much needed air back into his lungs, nothing much she could do. "Riiight." A hint of a smile curled over plump lips at his imagery. He had a habit of making her feel comfortable with laughter, even after everything that had happened. "I'm sure it was a great plan."

He grasped the extended hand for support and the two slightly beaten culprits moaned as they rose to their feet. The smile faded and a snarl of a warning came to their presence. She stomped one foot forward in a half step. "Get !" The two held on to one another for support and scampered away, much to the brunette's approval. "I still got it."

Realizing her hand was still clasped to Xander's and that he no longer needed her aid, she retracted the appendage with only a small stain of awkwardness. It wasn't that she disliked touching, just the now one eyed man probably didn't list her as his favorite people. She didn't want him to get the wrong idea. The line between good and evil Faith was blurry for most of the Scoobies. Or people in general.

He was giving her that look again. The one she'd seen before, though usually directed at Buffy. That goofy gratitude and about to thank you look. She wasn't great with thanks, giving or receiving so she decided to go with the more serious approach. "Yeah, 'bout that timing." Leaning to retrieve her bag, it was flung once again over her shoulder as she began escorting her newest companion away from the gathered on lookers.

"Strangling muggers. . really the least of your problems. Death though ? Usually worse, so say the experts." Okay, not the best way to break the news about his impending doom but, it was Faith, she wasn't exactly capable of the soft blow technique.
puffy_xandman on September 21st, 2006 01:58 am (UTC)
Xander just nodded and took one more deep breath as the world slowed down. Sure he was safe for now because Faith was here and why was Faith here? It seemed so natural to run into the Slayer here but there was no reason for this feeling. Last Xander had heard Faith was far away from this place doing something with slayer recruitment or something. He was sure Buffy had told him last time they had talked but mostly Xander was tuning out just in case the conversation turned to the topic of the current boy toy.

“Yeah I think death gets a bad rap after all no one who has died has come back to complain.” Ok way bad joke but Xander was both scared and a little nervous. The crowed was not his thing and usually when someone tries to kill him he likes to know why.

“Maybe we should get out of here and go someplace safe…”

“Hey Faith and Xander!” The carpenter’s eyes went wide when he saw the last woman he had ever thought he would see.

“Oh umm… Cordelia… wow did you guys form a club or something.” Cordy just rolled her eyes and looked at Faith.

“Come on, whatever happened earlier with Xander? That was just a preview. We need to get out of here now.” Cordy explained in her normal polite manner.

“Umm sure but where?” Ok now Xander really felt dumb; he had a hotel but it was small and would hardly fit three people. There was a time that the idea of sleeping with two hot women would have been Xander’s fantasy but now not so much. Ok that was a lie but if the one eyed one had said that out loud he was sure they would kill him on the spot.
faith lehane: b&wscratchyouout on September 21st, 2006 04:28 am (UTC)
"With a little luck, you won't have anything to complain about." A pat on his shoulder was given with lightness, the only thing she could think to do. It wasn't the greatest news, but it wasn't like he had a blind midget on hand to protect him. He had her.

Maybe not the best, stability wise, of her class but she'd sure as Hell do what she could. "Don't worry, Xand, I'll take good care of ya." Soon interrupted by the second brunette coming to haunt him from the past, Faith idled, letting the introductions and grace period of shock to wear off. "Yeah, C, I got in under control, alright ? Eighty six the 'tude."

There was a casualness now to their argued banter, be it obvious to Xander or not. There was a conflict of leadership and cooperation of ideas, but there wasn't much bite behind the bark anymore. Male voice overtook the conversation again and Faith redirected her attention.

"If you don't have a pad where we could talk for a bit, I can work something out. My hometown, I remember my way around." Giles had a bit of a soft spot for his earliest Scoobies. Sure, there were thousands of Slayers now, some recruited, some still living their everyday life. But there was a warm, mushy spot in the Brit, only for those three special people-- Buffy, Willow and Xander.

Faith knew such to be true since the elder man had offered her whatever funds she needed in order to ensure the son like apprentice's safety. So if Xander, she didn't need to ask to know C's opinion, would prefer a better hotel, she could arrange just that easily. As long as Faith had easy access to Xander's side, for protection of course, than the Slayer had no problems.

Walking during their conversation, moving the trio away from the airport and onto the main street, she halted again. A quick glance was thrown between both her companions, quickly growing in impatience. "Well ? Hotel, restaurant, crackhouse ?" Somehow she doubted a cabbie would enjoy waiting, parked for twenty minutes while the three decided where to go.
puffy_xandman on September 22nd, 2006 05:20 pm (UTC)

“Oh we are so going to a hotel and one with room service because I am starved and need to lie down.” Cordelia blurted out before Xander could open his mouth. “Come on there has to be at least on three-star hotel in this town, right?” Xander smiled a little find Cordy’s bossy attitude somewhat familiar and comforting. After being away traveling throughout Africa for so long the ex-carpenter was glad some things had not changed.

“Hey it’s Boston so I would definitely think so.” The one eyed one said looking at Faith wondering if she would be offended by Cordy’s obvious disdain for her home town. Xander thought Faith had hated Boston more than anyone because of all the bad things that happened here, but he was not totally positive. Faith was not always the easiest person to read so there was a chance she had deeper affections for this town than she would ever admit.

As they continued walking Xander kept rubbing his neck finding the pain start to dissipate. Really it had stopped throbbing a while ago but the lingering memory of fingers digging into his flesh still bothered the Xandman. If Faith had not been there he would have died. Sure he was used to being the saved by women so that no longer bothered him, still it seemed weird that Faith would have been there just when he needed her.

“So um… have you heard from Buffy lately?” He asked trying to find a common topic. As the words left his mouth Alexander knew that had been a bad starting point. Still he decided not to back down and let it go hoping Faith would not take it the wrong way.
faith lehane: hard to get byscratchyouout on September 23rd, 2006 02:45 am (UTC)
Hand raised, in silent encouragement for Cordelia to cease the whining. "Stop. It's not that bad." A beat of hesitation and her voice changed slightly. ". . not all of it's that bad." Before the other female could continue, she leaned forward slightly, making eye contact to the other side of Xander's person. "Talk less."

Grateful for the carpenter's interference, she nodded in agreement. "Lot of stuff's probably different in the ocean but I can still navigate the waves." Meant to be encouragement, it was downplayed by the somber expression washing over her features. It was a bittersweet reunion with her hometown. She could remember a lot of good times with friends. Mostly she could remember a lot of good sex.

But there was a dark side beneath the exterior, as with all things. There were memories and emotions the brunette was forced to repress in order to be able to focus on the task at hand. If she was going to protect Xander from whatever the Hell was coming, she need to be on top of things. Wallowing in self loathing and conflict over the past would only get him, and possibly all of them killed.

A step was lost at the mention of Buffy, jaw ticking once inadvertently in annoyance. The blonde was rarely a good venue for discussion, the two never being able to cooperate for long. They'd set aside differences for the battle in Sunnydale, but old habits die hard. It wasn't long before the bickering had become physical. They hadn't spoken since Buffy left for Rome and Faith would prefer to keep it that way.

"No." She replied bluntly, obviously put off by the question. It had been known before she broke out of jail to help Angel-- she was never going to be as good as Buffy. Not morally. Not in that hero, martyr, righteous way that had people flocking to her in adoration. Buffy was the Golden Child and no matter how much good Faith did to atone for past sins, she'd always be in the blonde's shadow. Her understudy. Inferior. So, really, she was exactly where she started. Buffy's legend had hindered her reputation from the first breath she took as the Slayer.

Needless to say, it was a wondrous feat for her to not bite off Xander's head. Waving a hand to signal a cab their direction, she opened the door for the other two and stood in wait. "Get in, pick a hotel. C. . no input, my expense budget isn't a toy for you." Realizing how lame she sounded in that scolding mother way, she sighed and climbed into the car.
puffy_xandman on September 23rd, 2006 11:19 pm (UTC)
Xander picked the Holiday Inn, mostly because he knew the name. He also picked it because as a child his Parents used to take him to the Holiday Inn in Oregon, and that one had a fountain in the lobby that Xander liked to throw pennies in. Also he knew they were cheap and most of them had a small restaurant inside.

The car ride was relatively quiet except for the music playing on the radio. Xander was really not sure what kind it was but it had a lot of drums and he was sure he could hear some chanting but was not certain.

“So first time in Boston?” The cab driver asked over his shoulder a thick accent that was as indefinable as the music. The only thing Xander could say was it was not African, or at least not from the countries in Africa he had been to.

“Actually Faith is from here but I’m new.” Xander offered as Cordelia rolled her eyes.

“You know there better be room service at the hotel.” She hissed under her breathe.

“Oh such anger! I would never let my wife speak to me in such a manner. I hope your other wife is better behaved.” Xander could not help but smirk but Cordy just fumed.

“Oh we are so not married, we dated in high school but that had been a mistake.” C added wanting nothing more than to get to the hotel, out of her clothes, and in a hot bath.
faith lehane: to be newscratchyouout on September 24th, 2006 03:33 am (UTC)
There was no objection about his choice of lodging. Alright, there wasn't any objection except from Cordelia. Something about lack of class and. . not of her standards. Faith honestly hadn't bothered with listening. She'd gotten the gist of C's snobbish attitude a long time ago. Xander had been sandwiched between both females, something Faith doubted he would mind. She'd neglected to answer the cabby intentionally, hint of the local accent would have given it away if she had taken the time to deny her hometown.

Xander answered for her, which drew her attention away from the window scenes she had been watching before. It wasn't a look of anger, but random annoyance. It wasn't his fault for her bad memories though so, with a bit of force, it faded and her face became expressionless once again.

A chuckle was soon pulled from her though at the assumption that the other two were married. She nearly choked on it though when he mentioned Xander's "other" wife. A quick exchange between the other passengers and finally, she spoke. "That suppose to be me ?" She waited for Cordy to get through her mistake ramble before continuing, this time directly addressing the presuming cab driver. "I gotta be the other wife ? What makes you think she isn't the other and I'm the original ?"

An odd topic for her to get offensive over ? Yes. A bit of bitterness for always being overlooked for Buffy ? Maybe. Palm out, she gave a push to the driver's seat, not enough to physically harm him, just enough to jar his position. "Jackass." She muttered to herself, none too quietly, and sat back in her own seat with crossed arms.

Feeling the other two looking at her, she added without looking at them, knowing their confusion without seeing it. "Shut up." Not a threat, as it was more exhausted than angry. With a bit of luck, they arrived to their destination a few moments later, Faith throwing a few bills to the driver as she exited the car. Bag fixed on her shoulder, she walked ahead of the others to the front desk and rang the bell.

A middle aged woman appeared soon enough with a courteous smile. "How can I help you ?" Faith looked to her own bag and her other companions, each who was carrying a bag of their own, then back to the woman, as if the answer should be obvious. "We need rooms." After a nod of acknowledgement the employee began typing away on the keyboard.