Xander Harris, Greek God
by Am-Chau Yarkona
An answer to Lwinwood12's challenge.
Title: Xander Harris, Greek God.
Author: Am-Chau Yarkona
Category: Challenge answer. AU/ impossible future fic. Distribution: Enchanted Ivy's Place. Will also be posted on Fanfic.net. Others- please ask. E-mail: email@example.com
Rated PG (language, mild naughty things)
July 16th, 2004.
"Hi, Wills, it's Xander here- you know, that friend you used to have."
"I think I distantly recall."
"What took you so long, anyway? Washing your hair? Hiding in the closet?"
"Y'got me...I'm a closet gay. Why the upset tone?"
" Bad day- I got sacked, and well- you know, I was right earlier."
"How do you mean?"
"Well, as I was walking home, I thought: 'Here we go again. I've lost another job. Now I've got to go home an tell Anya, and she'll be mad, and get drunk, and who knows what.' And Willow, you know, I was right. Why is it always me who's first off the wall when the roofing starts?"
"I don't know, Xander. Maybe you should try something different."
"I don't know. you could become a model."
"A model? What kind of photographer would take me as a model?"
"Well, Anya thinks you're good looking. You could try it."
"Don't be silly, Will."
"If you insist. Who's shouting there? It's Charlie- I'd better go. He probably ought to be put to bed, and I doubt Anya'll do it. Bye, Willow."
August 7th, 2004.
Snippets from a secret tape recorder running at the back of a rather seedy photographer's studios:
"Makeover's done, Max- you can have this new lad in there now."
"Morning- I'm Max, and you are.?"
"Alright already! Enough of the 'I'm all shy and scared' stuff. Let's get this photo shoot on the road."
"That's enough of the dancing shots, er, Alex- if you'd just pick up the handcuffs and- smile!"
"Those will be in the magazine in the next couple of months- and your check'll be in the post. If they're a success, we might ask you to come back- is that okay? Yeah? Great. See ya."
September 29th, 2004.
A transatlantic call: "Hello?"
"Giles? It's Willow here. I just wanted to talk, you know. Is this a good time?"
"Yes, Willow, it's fine. I was going to do some card indexing, but I'm sure it'll keep. How are things in Sunnydale these days?"
"Okayish. I'm a bit worried about Xander and Anya, though. Xander's been out of work for two months or so, and the Magic Box doesn't really bring any money in. I'm not sure how they manage, especially when Anya."
"Anya what? She isn't back on the drink again is she?"
"Well, yeah, she is. I saw her the other day- I went round about lunchtime, to see Charlie as much as anything, because it was his birthday- and she was pretty much sloshed. Xander had Charlie out in the garden- they're building a tree house, bless them- but she was ranting about seeing Xander in a, a men's magazine."
"Xander? In a men's magazine?"
"One for gay men, I think. I'm not quite sure why Anya bought it, but she showed me, and it was defiantly Xander. Um, all of Xander. With chains, and, er, handcuffs. And dancing."
"Not good, I must say. It can't be that harmful though, can it?"
"I'm not sure- we've got a Scooby gang meeting tonight. I think what happens tonight will decide it."
[Something bleeps in the background.]
"Is that your end or mine, Giles?"
"Mine- I'd better go. Good luck at the Scooby meeting, Willow."
September 29th, 2004, 8:10 pm, Buffy's house.
[Door opens] "Hi, Anya, Xander- oh, Charlie, too?"
"Yeah, our babysitter backed out at the last minute, and Ahn..."
"I could have schtayed hoome, you knoww."
"We need you here, Ahn. Buffy, can Charlie sleep in your spare room?"
"Yes, of course. Oh- hi, Willow!"
"Hi Buffy, Xander, Anya, Charlie- you look half asleep on your feet, boy."
"Yes you are. Come on, let's put you to bed. Hello, Dawn."
"Aren't you guys going to come in?"
"Oh, yes. And upstairs, yes, Charlie?"
"Wanna play with Dawn."
"In the morning- bed. Now!" [Door closes. Frantic knocking. Opens again.]
"Ah, Spike. I guess you might as well come in."
"Thanks, Slayer. Hello, Anya, Dawn- and is that the Whelp and the Oik I see disappearing up the stairs?"
"It's Xander and Charlie, if that's what you mean."
"Oh, hello Willow. Didn't see you there."
"Shall we sit down while we wait for Xander? There's food in the sitting room and I wouldn't want him to get it all."
"I brought Scooby Snacks too, Buffy- shall I just take them in?"
"Yeah, thanks, Willow."
"I've got my own too, Buffiee- schall I schare them?"
"You can, Anya, but I won't have any, thanks- and don't give any to Dawn."
"Why ever not?"
"Have to stay sober for patrol, y'know."
[Chairs creak. Footsteps come downstairs. Wrapper rustles.]
"Hey! Red push pops! These RULE."
"How's the new job going, Wills? Everything good in teaching these days?"
"It's all good- except when the kids are bad. Then it's."
[Shout from upstairs: "Ah! Turn the lights back on! I'm scared of the dark!" Someone leaps up.]
"I'll go, Whelp. A touch of the cuddly scary monster usually calms him down."
"I never thought I'd say this, but thanks a lot, Spike."
[Ten minutes later]
"Since when did Charlie like Winnie the Pooh? The kid manipulated me into reading the damn thing."
"Ah, poor Schipkey."
"Can I get anyone anything, before we get down to business? Xander? Willow?"
"I'm good, thanks Buffy- push pops are all a guy requires."
"A cup of tea and a plate of Oreos, please."
"I'm sure that can be arranged."
[Sound of feet leaving room, and kettle going on.]
"I think thisch isch a schutable time for my annouschment."
"Ahn, honey- what are you.?"
"Schut up, Zchander. Thisch isch your fa, fau, fault."
[She holds up her hand for silence, and stands, unsteadily.]
"Lascht week, I happened to purchasche an intreschting document by the name of "Guysch in Bondage." In it I found schome intreschting picturesch of my huschband. You pig! You schlut!"
[She wavers, again, and her knees buckle. She falls to the floor, muttering incoherently.]
[Buffy hears the sound, and comes to investigate. When she enters the room, she sees Dawn huddled in her armchair, still a little scared by Anya's behaviour, though she would never admit it; Willow kneeling on the floor by Anya's comatose form, muttering some sort of spell, Xander crouched next to her; and Spike grinning, putting his hand over to comfort Dawn.]
"What's going on?" she asks. "She stood up to give an announcement, and halfway through she descended into insult yelling and then just toppled over. I think it isn't anything worse than drink, and there isn't anything my magic can do to help. She just needs to sleep it off."
"A candidate for sleeping in my bed tonight, I think. Can you carry her, Xander, or shall I?"
"She's my wife, I can do it."
[Sound of feet heading upstairs again. A few minutes later they come down, as a lighter set leave the room.]
"I'm going to bed. You adults can do what you like, but I reserve the youngest member's right to go to sleep early when disgusted by the behaviour of supposed-grown ups."
"What was Anya's announcement? Xander do you know?"
"It was something about Xander in a magazine, pictures, but I didn't quite understand it."
"She found out, that's what."
"What did she find out, Xander? You know you can tell us."
"It wasn't anything very major, just a way to bring a few more cents into the house. In August, we got very tight for money, and so I had another go at looking for other types of jobs. There were a few people looking for models, to do nude or dirty pictures, so I took a few jobs like that. It was only once or twice, and she just spent the money. I didn't think anything more of it, until now."
"So that's what the ex-demon's worried about? A few nude pictures? God, I glad I'm not married to her!"
"Why Spike, have you got a secret like that?"
"Matter of fact, Red, yeah. I did some nudie pictures once. Back when cameras where new, and having your photo taken meant standing still for ten minutes. Porno was as big then as it is now, and it was a good way for a guy who was new to London to earn a few pennies. I doubt any prints still exist, but it's the principle of the thing."
"Wow, that's a deep, dark confession, Spike."
"At least she wasn't announcing your divorce, dork-boy."
"Yeah- the way you two are going, it won't be long. I expect you'll get the kid, her being a drunk and all."
"I can't believe you did that."
"Well, not and stay sane, anyway."
September 30th, 2004
A message left on the Harris' answering machine
"Hello, it's Max Miller, the photographer here. Um, Mr. LaVelle- Alex- we could use another photo shoot with you, if you're up for that. Phone me back- you know the number. Thanks, bye."
October 5th, 2004.
More extracts from the secret tape in Max's studio:
"That's nice, Alex. And just one more with the banana.Good. I think that's it for today. Same time next week, Mr LaVelle? Great. By the way, I think some bigger mags might take some of these. If they do, you'll get a better cut- I'll try, indeed."
November 27th, 2004
"Hello Xander? I know you're there- it's Willow. Pick up, you know you want too." [Clunk]
"Hello Wills. I was just putting Charlie to bed."
"Hi, Xander. Um, you know those photos you did, for that magazine?"
"Yeah. What about them?"
"Did you do some more, 'cos a friend if mine showed me another set, in a different one today?"
"It's okay if you did- not everyone gets to be a famous sex symbol, and have their picture published with titles like "Greek Gods eat Bananas. In fact, why can't that happen to me?"
"You'd have to be a Greek Goddess, Will."
"Yeah- and did you really have a banana in your pants, or was it.?"
"It was a banana, Will. Let's not talk about it, shall we?"
"Oh, sure. I really rang you up because I've had a terrible day. I had That set of fourth formers again. They were appalling! You have no idea."
"Oh, I think I do, Will- I used to be a fourth former, remember?"
"Yes, but you where never like this."
If you enjoyed this story, please send feedback to Am-Chau Yarkona
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