A Return to Old Ways

Author: MH <www.weezergirl[at]juno.com>

This fic is the reply to three challenges:

#1: Xander turns into Ripper for Halloween instead of a soldier. "Xander-Halloween challenge"

#2: Kendra doesn't die "3 slayers challenge"

#3: Giles sends Xander to Boston because of rumors of a new slayer "Boston challenge"

SUMMARY: Xander meet Ripper. Ripper meet Xander.

TIME LINE: S2: Halloween.

DISCLAIMER: I don't own these characters, never did. Just giving myself a five-finger-discount, I mean, I'm 'borrowing' the Buffy cast to do my bidding.

RATING: Strong R.

SPOILERS: Halloween

CATEGORY: Action/Adventure

PAIRING: none.

Latest addition

Chapter 1

Damn Snyder.

Damn sweet tooth.

Damn Snyder.

Forcing him, Buffy, and Willow to baby sit a bunch of kids to go Trick-or-Treating.

He had spent his last two bucks that morning to satisfy his sweet tooth. He didn't even bother to ask his parents for any money, knowing all too well that they would just ignore him.

Entering the library, Xander found Giles reorganizing his personal books, and his only option to buy a costume.

Either ask Giles for money, or get dirty clothes out of the laundry basket and go as a hobo?

Nah, Snyder would suspend him from school for the stench alone.

"Giles," Xander said.

Rupert Giles was completely startled by the voice, since he was facing away from the swinging doors, and sent the book he held in his hands flying through the air.

Giles turned around just in time to see Xander catch the very ancient book.

"Xander," Giles sounded angry, "you should know better than to sneak up on other people."

Giles snatched the book away from the teenager, and turned to put the ancient text on the large table, ignoring the irritating smirk that was on the young boy's face.

"Now," Giles said, calming down, "what is it that you wanted?"

"Can I borrow five bucks?" Xander asked.

"May I ask why?"

"Well," Xander began, "you know how the high school has students volunteer to take elementary kids out for trick-or-treating tonight?"

Giles nodded.

"... And that Snyder had Willow, Buffy, and I 'volunteer' for this duty?"

Again Giles just nodded his head.

"Well, I kinda need money to buy a costume. So, can I borrow some money?"

"May I ask another question?" Giles asked.

"Sure," Xander responded.

"What will you be going as?"

"A soldier," Xander said.

"Soldier?" asked Giles.

"Yup," Xander replied.

"Bloody stupid Americans, with their bloody stupid ideas," said Giles.

"Woah, Giles, what's with all the hostility?" asked Xander, surprised with this sudden outburst.

"Sorry about that," Giles apologized, "can I ask why you are going as a soldier?"

"I have the clothes and dog tags at home," Xander said, "all I need now are a few guns to complete the outfit."

"Why not go as something a little more... original?" the librarian asked.

"Like what?"

"Let me get something out of the weapons cage," Giles said, as he disappeared into the back room of the cage.

'Sure Giles, just take your sweet ass time why don't you,' Xander thought.

"Stupid typical Americans," Xander heard from inside the cage.

Giles returned with an item in his hands.

A beat-up dark brown leather jacket with white symbols painted on.

"What's this?" Xander asked.

"A jacket," Giles replied, "I thought it was rather obvious."

"Very funny Giles," Xander spat back, "but why is this better than going as a soldier?"

"Like I said," Giles began, "why not go as something original, instead of as the everyday average soldier. It would be almost the same as going as a pirate."

Giles knew he said the right thing, as Xander began to consider his options.

'Okay, gotta think,' Xander thought, 'go as soldier, or go as... whatever the hell this other thing is supposed to be.'

He came to a quick conclusion.

'Giles is right, for some reason the pirate costumes are popular this year, and there is a chance that a few other people will dress up as soldiers. Might as well go with Giles' idea, at least I know it's gonna be one of a kind.'

"Who did this belong to?" Xander asked.

Giles handed over the jacket in question, a little hesitantly, that held the secrets of his wild past.

"It belonged to a man that I don't like very much," Giles replied.

The Watcher thought back to his shameful past, and the dangers he constantly put himself, his friends, and countless innocent strangers in. He hoped that none of the children nor Jenny ever found out about his past.

"Can I still borrow some money," Xander asked, "to get something to go with this."

"Fine," Giles said.

Xander bolted out the library doors as soon as the cash hit the palm of his hand. He ran as quickly as he could, wanting to join Buffy and Willow at the new costume shop. Hopefully he would get their before they left.


Xander arrived at Ethan's Costume Shop, with half an hour before the store closed, and with neither of his best friends in sight.

"I guess they didn't feel like waiting for me," Xander muttered to himself.

It felt weird that this store closed so early. Since none of the other stores in town were closing anytime soon.

He was also hurt by the fact that both Buffy and Willow didn't wait for him.

He would have waited for them.

No matter, he was here to get something to go with the leather jacket.

"May I help you with something young man?"

Xander yelped and turned to the British voice behind him.

"Man," Xander held a hand to his chest, "now I know what Giles felt when I surprised him earlier."

"Giles?" the man asked, "do you by any chance mean, Rupert Giles?"

"Yeah," Xander replied, "you know him?"

"Oh, yes," the man replied, "I'm an old friend of his."

Xander nodded his head.

"Please forgive my rudeness. The name's Ethan Rayne, I'm the owner of this store."

"Xander Harris, that would be me," Xander replied.

"Well then," Ethan began, "on to business, shall we? What can I help you with?"

"I need something to go with this jacket," Xander told the shop owner.

Today was his lucky day. Ethan had rented some very good costumes that were sure to do some chaos in this small town. But to have ole 'Ripper' back, would be a bloody great time.

"I have just the thing," Ethan replied.

He went behind the front counter, and pulled out a silver pendant. A pentagram on a black leather necklace.

"How much?" Xander asked.

With an evil smile, that could rival the Grinch, Ethan made the sale of his life.

Chapter 2

Xander wondered why this Ethan guy didn't want Giles to know he was in town. Only said that he wanted to surprise his old friend. Xander didn't know why, but he let himself get talked into keeping it from Giles.

But forget about that right now, 'cause at that moment Xander was too busy preparing his costume.

'It ain't perfect, but it's as good as I'm gonna make it,' Xander thought as he stared at the clothes lying on his bed.

A white muscle shirt, Giles' brown leather jacket, a pair of faded out blue jeans, the pentagram necklace from Ethan that he had bought at a very cheap price, two plastic guns that he almost forgot to buy, and tan steel toe boots.

But unfortunately he had to pull off what he called the "dead-boy look" by wearing lots of hair gel to make his hair spike up.

After finally getting dressed and staring at a mirror, to make sure he didn't look like an idiot, he looked at his Tweety watch and saw that it was already time to go pick up Buffy and Willow, and head back to the high school to baby sit those little rug rats.

It's not that he hated kids, cause most of the time he acted like a very big kid, it was just the thought of having kids of his own that scared him.

I mean what if he turned out to be just like his old man, getting drunk and beating his wife and kids. Xander would have killed himself before turning into the pitiful excuse of a man that his father is.

'Something's still missing,' Xander mused.

Xander ran downstairs, then sneaking into the living room so as not to wake up his dad who fell asleep watching the television, he grabbed the last two pieces that finally completed his costume.

Now all he had to do was walk over to the Summers' place, which wasn't very far away. He was prepared, not that he wanted to be attacked, but just in case he was he had a cross and two stakes.


Xander made it to the Summers' house in record time, and thankfully without being attacked by any demons or vamps.

He realized that both Buffy and Willow were expecting him to be dressed as a soldier, since he did tell them that's what he was gonna dress up as. Xander also realized he had no idea what the two girls were gonna go as.

Still knowing very little of Buffy Summers, he knew that he was going to be surprised by whatever she wore.

But he's known Willow all her life, and knew she was going to go as something that wouldn't bring too much attention to herself.

He quickly made his way to the front door and knocked.

The door was opened just enough to show Dawn's head.

Dawn pouted, when she saw that Xander wasn't dressed as a soldier like he said he would.

"I thought you said you were going as a soldier," Dawn told Xander.

Dawn opened the door the rest of the way to show Xander her soldier costume.

Xander felt bad for not telling at least Dawn of his change in costume.

"I'm sorry Dawn," Xander apologized, "I was kinda talked into wearing something different."

Dawn couldn't stay mad at him, especially when he aimed those puppy-dog eyes at her.

"Fine," Dawn muttered, "but you're going to have to make this up to me by giving me more candy when we get back."

"It's a deal," Xander replied.

Dawn finally noticed how great Xander looked in his costume as she lead him into the living room.

"Cool costume," Dawn complimented him, "what are you supposed to be anyway?"

"Thanks," Xander replied, "and I'm supposed to be a guy... I think."

He then made a show of checking body parts to confirm his suspicions.

Dawn just rolled her eyes and smiled at his weird humor that he would do around her, just to annoy her mom and sister. Her mom and big sis were always telling her to act more mature, or her 'favorite' line "act your age". But Xander would always goof off around her in spite of what anyone said about him acting too 'immature' for someone his age.

Dawn turned around, when she heard someone cough behind her, to see her mom in a barely decent/somewhat slutty pirate costume, her stupid sister Buffy in a ugly pink eighteenth-century dress and a black wig, and her sister's friend Willow in a ghost costume.

All three seemed too preoccupied at staring at Xander's costume.

'My my, how times have changed,' Joyce thought as she stared at Xander's muscled chest that was covered by a white muscle shirt and a leather jacket that was purposely left unbuttoned.

'Wow', Buffy thought, 'I never knew he could look this good. No wonder Willow has a crush on him.'

Willow was too stunned at the sight before her to even conceive a single thought at the moment. And was very grateful that she was wearing the white sheet over her head, since her face was a brighter shade of red than her hair was at the moment, from having some very nice and dirty thoughts of Xander going through her head.

'YUMMY' they all thought at the same time.

But Xander, being Xander, was oblivious to their thoughts.

"Sorry I'm a little late," Xander apologized.

"A little?" Buffy began, "you're ten minutes late. And I thought you said you were going as a soldier?"

But before Xander could reply, Joyce interrupted their conversation in a very serious voice.

"Xander," her stern voice made the room deathly quiet.

"Yes, Mrs. S?" Xander replied, a small tremble was heard in his voice.

"Is that cigarette real?" Joyce asked.

The other three girls finally noticed the cigarette that he had hanging on his ear. Since they were too busy before staring at his chest.

"Yes it is," Xander answered, "but it's not what you think."

"It's not?" Joyce continued.

"No," Xander began, "it's just for show, I'm not going to smoke it."

"You better not," Joyce asserted, "and if you do, you better pray that I don't find out about it."

Xander gulped nervously.

'Did Mrs. Summers just threaten me?' Xander thought.

"So," Buffy began, although a little nervously, "what happened to your soldier costume?"

"I was gonna go as a soldier," Xander explained, "but I changed my mind at the last minute. That's why I got here late."

Joyce interrupted again. Although this time it wasn't in a threatening tone.

"I'll drop you all off at the high school on my way to the art gallery," Joyce told them.

"Cool," Xander acknowledged, "I didn't feel like walking anyways."

The trip to the school was made in silence. Mostly. Dawn kept touching Xander's spiky hair. But he didn't seem to mind.

"Hey," Xander bellowed, "do not touch the hair."

He joked, but at the same time tried to sound serious. Which didn't last long as he smirked at Dawn. All of the women in the car rolled their eyes, and Dawn kept touching his hair every now and then.


Xander regretted bringing the pack of cigarette's with him the moment he stepped inside the high school. 'Cause the very first step he took was his last as he saw Principal Snyder walk into the hall and stared straight at him.

"Harris," Snyder yelled.

Xander sighed. He didn't hate school. He just hated this entire town. For the Hellmouth. The vampires. The demons. And especially for their teachers and Principals.

"You better not be bringing in illegal drugs into this school," Snyder barked, tilting his head up to look Xander in the eyes, and pointing at the cigarette on Xander's ear.

"No sir," Xander responded.

"That's a cigarette Harris," Snyder stated, "that counts as an illegal drug. And that gives me that right to suspend you from school."

Snyder smiled at Xander. Finally having a good reason to kick the little punk out of his school.

'It's bad enough just to look at his face,' Xander thought, 'he's even uglier when he smiles.'

"Oh, this?" Xander said, as he reached up to pluck the item from its resting place, "huh, don't know. Why don't we smoke it and find out?"

"Don't be a smart ass Harris," Snyder commanded.

Xander rolled his eyes at the principal.

"I'm joking, Principal Snyder," Xander claimed, "I threw out all the tobacco and put in potpourri. Want to take a whiff?"

"Don't you dare stick that thing in my face Harris," Snyder yelled, "or I'll make your life a living hell."

Xander mocked Snyder as he started walking away. Pulling out one of the plastic guns from its hiding place, he aimed it at Snyder's head.

"Ah, you're not worth the waste of a good bullet," Xander said.

He replaced the gun at the waist of his pants at his back, hidden by the leather jacket he was wearing, and put the cigarette back on his ear.


Xander took a few minutes to survey his very own pack of hyperactive little runts.

"Everybody line up," Xander directed.

The five kids he was given stood in a straight line facing him. He paced in front of the kids for a few seconds before speaking.

"On sleezing candy, tears are key. Tears will normally get you the double bagger. You can try the old 'you missed me' routine, but it's risky, only go there for chocolate. Alright, let's go get us some candy. And if you're good, next year we'll egg the houses of the people that give you junk instead of the good stuff."

The kids cheered at the last part of the speech. For getting an opportunity to get some revenge for receiving fruits and dental floss instead of candy from a few of the grown ups.

They leave the high school along with the other groups.


Xander walks down a street with his group of kids, he looks towards a house he remembered when he and Willow went Trick-or-Treating a few years ago.

"Huh," Xander thought out loud, "if I remember correctly, this old lady in this house here, gives out some pretty good candy."

The kids walk up to the house as Xander waits for them at the street.

The wind picks up as Ethan Rayne finished his spell from the back room of his store. Confident in himself, he didn't even bother to leave town straight away. Wanting instead to gloat at his impending victory over his former running buddy, Rupert Giles.

Those who had gotten their costume from Ethan's costume shop felt a wave of dizziness pass through them before they lost control of their bodies.


Willow tried to stop two of her kids from choking each other, but failed, not having enough strength to pull them apart.

She felt the wave of magic hit her body, before she felt her throat run dry, and she was unable to breathe. She fell on the porch and momentarily lost consciousness.

Willow's eyes shot open and stood up, sans ghost sheet. Looking down at her sheet covered body, she freaked. And not that she was looking at her ghost covered body. Well not at first. She freaked cause now the sheet wasn't covering the costume she was wearing underneath.

"Oh god," Willow croaked, "I'm a ghost."

Hearing gun shots, she looks up and to see Xander holding two 9mm handguns, firing at the demon-kids running around.

"Xander?" Willow asked herself. Having a hard time wondering how Xander knew how to handle a gun.

Willow runs out to the street to where Xander is standing. But before she could call out to him, she sees two guns pointed right at her face.

Xander whirls around when Willow reaches him, he points both guns at her.

"Who the bloody hell are you?" Xander asked in an English accent.

Willow was afraid and confused.

Afraid for her life, even though she was temporarily a ghost, and confused as to why Xander didn't sound like himself.

"Xander," Willow begged, "it's me, Willow."

"I don't know who this wanker fellow you're talkin' about is," Xander claimed, "but it bloody sure as hell ain't me."

"Xander, stop playing around," Willow demanded.

He was already getting tired of this bloody bitch confusing him with someone else. This "Xander" bloke.

"I told you already," Xander began, "you... you... mmmm."

Xander, for the first time looks down at her body, and gets a wolfish smile on his face.

Willow, seeing the look on his face, got nervous.

"Xander," Willow begged, "what are you thinking?"

She was curious, but she didn't want to know at the same time.

"I'm thinkin'," Xander murmured, "that you can call me whatever you want, just as long as soon as you get out of those clothes and tell me how much you charge?"

Willow looked at him confused.

"How much I what?" Willow asked.

Hoping against all hope, that he meant, how much she charged to help other students with their homework.

"Come on," Xander insisted, "how much do you charge?"

Xander did a quick study of her body, making Willow nervous as she tried to cover herself from Xander's eyes.

"You're a little thin," Xander pointed out, "so I'd guess, maybe, fifty an hour?"

'Fifty an hour?' Willow thought.

"What are you trying to get at?" Willow asked her best friend.

"You know," Xander said, as he does a little hand gesture.

Willow gets a little angry at what Xander was trying to tell her.

"You better not be thinking what i think you're thinking, mister."

"Well, are you?" Xander asked.

"Am I what?" Willow returned.

"You know," Xander responded, "a streetwalker."

"A streetwhat?" Willow retorted.

Xander huffs, before replying.

"A streetwalker," Xander repeated, "a prostitute, a bloody hooker!"

Willow's face turned red with anger.

"I am not a hooker," she screamed in his face.

"Well," Xander began, as his wolfish smile returned to his face, "your mouth might be saying one thing, but your body is singing an entirely different tune, love."

Xander quickly makes a grab for her chest, and before she could stop him, his hand goes right through her body.

Xander was surprised.

"Oh, bloody hell," he snarled.

Willow starts babbling to herself, about "Xander" trying to grab her tits. Or "breasts" was the way she put it. Xander quickly tunes her out as she continued to babble on. He was too busy thinking up ways to get her to scream his name. And they all involved both parties being naked.

Well, the way she was dressed, he didn't have to waste time getting her naked, all he had to do was hike up her skirt.

"Just bloody marvelous," Xander complained, "first chance i get for some action, and the bloody wench turns out to be a ghost."

"I get it now!" Willow exclaimed.

Xander was bored. He didn't give a rats ass as to what she thought.

"I dressed up as a ghost for Halloween," Willow began to explain, "and now I am one."

She pointed at Xander.

"And you dressed up as," Willow stammered before she continued, "I don't know. Who are you supposed to be anyway?"

Finally a question he could answer.

"You can call me Ripper," he stated.

He does a little bow to her.

Willow, despite herself, blushes a little at the gesture.

Taking this opportunity, as he gets back up from his bow, he gives her a little wink.

Which makes her blush madly.

"So what do we do now, love," 'Ripper' tried a chance at sweet-talking the young redhead.

Willow didn't reply right away, afraid she would have no control over her voice, and accidently say something stupid.

"First off," Willow tried to explain, "you're not this Ripper guy. Your name is Xander Harris, and you're my best friend."

"Well, now that you mentioned it," Ripper agreed, "this body does feel a bit bulkier than mine. A bit... strange."

Ripper cut off Willow before she could tell him off for calling her best friend strange.

"And I don't mean bad strange," Ripper explained, "but not a good strange either, just odd."

He takes off his jacket to look at his left upper arm, where he had placed his 'mark', and was not totally surprised to see it no longer there.

"What are you looking for?" Willow asked.

Willow, even though knowing almost every single inch of Xander's body by memory, still had a tendency to drool over the size of his biceps.

"An old scar," Ripper answered.

He puts his jacket back on. He knew who was behind this, but for some strange reason, he didn't feel exactly like himself.

"Can I ask you a question?" Ripper asked.

"Yeah, sure," Willow replied.

"What year is it?" Ripper asked his question.

"1997, why?" Willow answered.

'1997,' Ripper thought, 'that would make me...'

He was caught off guard from the answer the redhead gave him, he'd be really old by now. That's if he was still alive.

"Let's regroup," Ripper advised, "and find anybody that'll help us destroy this spell that has been placed over us."

"What makes you think this is done by a spell?" Willow argued.

"For the fact that I'm in control instead of your friend," Ripper asserted, "also the fact that you..."

He paused as he passed his hand through Willow.

"...are a ghost. Must I go on?"

Willow had to admit he got her there.

"Ok," Willow acknowledged, "but we gotta find Buffy first."

"Buffy?" Ripper asked.

"Yeah," Willow said, "she's our friend. She's the Slayer."

"Slayer?" he inquired.

Now it was Willow that sighed. She didn't feel like having to tell this guy about demons and vampires. But then again he didn't freak out when he said that she was a ghost.

"Look I don't have all night to tell you everything," Willow exclaimed, "so I'll just give you the short version. Vampires, demons and other ugly things are real..."

"Wait wait wait," Xander interrupted, "I know all about vampires, demons and Slayers. But the thing that disturbs me is, are you telling me that the current Slayer is named Buffy?"

"Yeah," Willow said a little hesitantly.

She was stunned by what happened next.

Ripper fell on his back, spilling his guts, tears gushing out of his eyes, as he rolled around on the ground laughing his head off.

"Hey," Willow whined, "what's so funny?"

"This is too bloody much," Ripper said, laughing his ass off, "next you're gonna tell me that she's a cheerleader as well."

"She was," Willow affirmed, "but she had to quit the team."

Ripper rolls around the ground laughing harder this time. It takes him a few minutes to compose himself, but he manages, and stands up again.

"Well," Ripper chuckled, "let's go find us this Slayer friend of yours."

They don't go very far, when they hear a woman scream. So they headed in her direction, and soon laid eyes on the woman that was screaming.

"Buffy," Willow begged, "what do we do?"

As soon as the question was asked, the woman in jet black hair fainted, overwhelmed by her new surroundings.

Chapter 3

"Stupid bint," Ripper muttered at the so called Slayer, as she fainted.

"Did you say something?" Willow asked.

"No," Ripper responded.

Willow knelt next to Buffy, and tried to shake her awake. But the only problem was her hands went straight through her friend's body.

"You're going to have to wake her up," Willow ordered.

Well at least it gave him something to do.

Ripper bent down, and without hesitating, slapped the Slayer awake with one blow.

"Did you have to do it so hard?" Willow complained, as the reawakened Slayer rubbed her reddening cheek.

"She's awake isn't she," Ripper remarked.

Willow turned back to Buffy, to check on her friend.

"Buffy, are you alright?" Willow asked.

"What?" replied the bewildered Slayer.

"Are you hurt," Ripper barked.

"Buffy, are you hurt?" Willow cajoled.

"Buffy?" asked the confused Slayer.

"She's not Buffy," Willow announced.

Great, they were wasting their time with helping this woman, instead of looking for the Slayer.

"Well... if she's not Buffy," Ripper complained, "then forget this stupid bint, and let's go look for the actual Slayer."

"No," Willow beseeched, "this is Buffy... only it's, not her."

This was too confusing, even for Willow herself.

"What year is this?" Willow asked.

"1775, I believe," replied Buffy, "I... I don't understand. Who are you?"

"We're friends," Willow assured.

"Friends of whom?" Buffy bid, "your dress... everything is strange. How did I come to be here?"

"Breathe, okay?" Willow begged, "breathe, you're going to faint again."

Willow turned away from Buffy to face Xan... uh, Ripper.

'Well, at least he didn't dress up as Jack the Ripper,' Willow shivered at that thought.

"How are we supposed to get through this without the Slayer?" Willow babbled.

"We do things ourselves," Ripper claimed, "what else?"

Willow wasn't too sure about it. She always left the actual fighting to someone who knew what they were doing.

Ripper on the other hand, was on edge by now, wanting to do some damage already.

"Do you expect the Slayer to hold your hand when you cross the bloody street?" Ripper argued.

"No," Willow murmured.

But, before Ripper could continue, they heard Buffy scream as a demon jumped out from behind a tree, scaring the helpless Slayer.

Ripper walked up to the demon and pistol-whiped it with the butt of his 9mm, onto the demon's temple, knocking it out.

"And how do you expect the Slayer to help us, when she's the one who needs protecting at the moment," Ripper asserted.

"Now," Ripper continued, "I suggest we go indoors before we run into any more..."

He didn't get to finish as the helpless Slayer screamed in fear.

"A demon, a demon," Buffy screeched, and pointed down the street, "a demon!"

Ripper turned ready to fight another demon, but instead saw a car drive pass them.

He never thought he would ever come across a useless Slayer.

"That's not a demon," Willow explained, "it's a car."

'Bloody great,' Ripper thought 'this is my punishment, isn't it? For doing the things that I did, right?'

"What does it want?" she whimpered.

"Can we please just get inside?" Willow complained.

"Fine," Ripper groaned, "where to?"

"Where's the closest..." Willow thought for a moment to who's house was closest to where they were at.

"We can go to a friends," Willow informed.

They head towards the nearest house, which happened to be the Summers' home.


And as luck would have it, they ran into a 14-year-old girl dressed as a soldier, and holding an Assualt Rifle in front of the house they were going to.

"Dawn," Willow screamed.

Willow saw Dawn froze, as she called out the little girl's name. Dawn was facing away from the trio as they walked up to her.

Dawn waited for them to get up close, needing the element of surprise, and a few answers as well.

The soldier girl whips around to point her gun at the person that had yelled at her. But was surprised to see the barrel of her rifle go through the body of red headed hooker.

"I ain't interested in who you are," Dawn informed, "and I ain't interested in having sex with a dead hooker."

Willow glared at Dawn, while her face became red with anger.

"I am not a hooker," Willow hissed.

Ripper just laughed at the redhead.

"We're friends," Willow implored.

"Yeah right," Dawn retorted.

"We need your help okay?" Willow begged.

No choice but to go along, and find out why an 18-year-old soldier was stuck in a 12-year-old body, Dawn hooked up with the group.

"Fine," Dawn conceded, "but I better get some answers when this is over."


The front door was locked, so they had to go in through the kitchen door.

"All clear," Dawn announced, as she made a quick sweep of the kitchen for any danger.

"Hello? Mrs. Summers?" Willow called out, "good she's not back yet."

"Where are we?" Buffy asked.

"Your place," Willow replied, "now we just need to..."

A loud banging came from the front door, that caused everyone to rush out of the kitchen. Dawn moved to open the door.

"Don't open it," Willow cried.

"It could be a civilian," Dawn adviced.

"No," Willow commanded.

"Don't worry," Ripper assured, "I'll back her up, make sure nothin' happens to her."

"I said no," Willow repeated.

"She's no fun at all," Ripper complained.

"You got that right," Dawn agreed.

They shared a brief smile.

'Too bad I'm stuck in this body' Dawn thought.

Buffy picked up a picture that was sitting on a table.

"This... this could be me," Buffy said.

"It is you," Willow declared, "Buffy can't you remember anything at all?"

Buffy tried to concentrate, but came up with the obvious blank answer.

"We're your friends," Willow continued, "Dawn's your sister."

Buffy just didn't want to listen to all this. It was causing her to think too much. And thinking too much causes wrinkles. She didn't want to get wrinkles at such a young age.

"No," Buffy argued, "it's not true. I do not have friends in such low stature and I definately do not associate with women of ill repute."

"For the last time, I am not a hooker," Willow screamed.

"I don't like you," Buffy whined, "I want to go home."

"You are home," Willow assured.

Willow turned to walk away from the Slayer, since she was having no luck as to get through to her.

"She couldn't have dressed up as Xena?" Willow complained.

Just then a clawed demon's hand breaks through one of the doors small windows.

"Not a civilian," Willow announced.

"Affirmitive," Dawn acknowledged.

The window was too high for her to shoot through.

"Fuck it," Dawn grunted.

She got into a defensive stance, prepared for the kick back that her gun was going to give her small body, and to provide more vertical support to keep her from being thrown off her feet and onto her ass.

And then she sprayed the front door to her own house with bullets.

"What did you say?" Willow yelled.

But Ripper came to the rescue.

"Big noise," Ripper began, "scare monster. Any questions?"

Willow didn't like guns, especially when they were fired so up close to her.

But before she could do so much as glare at her best friend and Buffy's little sister, there was a scream from outside.

"Civilian," Dawn announced, before unlocking the door and running outside.

"Let's go save the bloody day then," Ripper declared before following Dawn.

"Why isn't anybody listening to me?" Willow whined to herself.

Buffy, meanwhile, was too busy trying her hardest from breaking down into tears. She was a proper lady after all.


Cordelia Chase ran for her life, screaming at the top of her lungs. She turned around every now and then to see if she was getting any closer from ditching the big ugly. But, surprisingly for something of its size, it was able to keep up.

"Somebody help me," Cordelia begged.

She turned again to see that she was slowly putting distance between them, but not fast enough for her liking. She was surprised when Xander, and Buffy's kid sister, seemed to appear out of thin air and almost ran into them.

"Xander," Cordelia was happy that someone was finally willing to help her.

"Come with us," Dawn commanded.

"Let's go," Ripper said, his guns pointed at the seven foot fur- ball that was chasing the brunette in the cat costume.

And they ran back inside the Summers' house, where Willow and Buffy were waiting.

"Cordelia," Willow said, surprised that Dawn and Xander had brought along with them.

"What the hell is going on?" Cordy asked.

"Okay," Willow began, "your name is Cordelia, you're not a cat. You're in high schol, and we're your friends... well, sort of."

"That's nice Willow," Cordelia retorted, "and you went mental when?"

"You know us?" Willow inquired.

"Yeah, lucky me," Cordelia replied, "what's with the name game?"

"A lots going on," Willow began to explain.

"No kidding," Cordelia shot back, "I was just attacked by Jojo, the dog-faced boy. Look at my costume. Do you really think that Party Town is going to give me back my deposit back? Not on the likely."

Ripper was too busy staring at her body to pay any attention to what she was saying. The shape of her ass. The swell of her breasts. He wanted her, very badly. So he decided to get some favorable points before sweet-talkin' her into bed.

"Here," Ripper said, he removed his leather jacket and laid it on Cordelia's shoulders.

"Thanks," Cordelia replied.

She was stunned by Xander's kindness to her.

"Okay, you guys stay here," Willow ordered, "while I get some help. If something tries to come in just fight it off."

Buffy, finally coming out of her crying histerics, was scared at the thought of having to fight.

"It's not our place to fight," Buffy remarked, "surely some men will protect us."

Cordelia was confused by what Buffy had just said. Usually the blonde was about as much as 'Girl Power' as a girl could get. But now, she was acting all... girly.

"What's that riff?" Cordy asked.

"It's like amnesia okay?" Willow explained as best she could, "they don't know who they are. Just sit tight."

Cordelia Chase didn't like other people ordering her around. She just had to put up with it just this one time, since there was something wiggy going on tonight.

"Who died and made her boss?" she questioned.

Buffy was the only one who was facing Willow as she stepped through a solid wall. The helpless Slayer's eyes shot wide open at the redhead's simple action.


Outside, people ran for their lives, screaming in terror.

William the Bloody, also known by his nickname, Spike was having the time of his life... or was it unlife?

Drusilla did say things would be different tonight. Who knew things would be this great.

"Well, this is just... neat," Spike said, as he observed the horrors that were happening around him.

Chapter 4

"You two," Dawn shouted, "check up stairs, make sure everything's locked up."

Cordelia left, with Ripper right behind.

Buffy waited until they were upstairs to talk to Dawn.

"Surely there's some place we can go," Buffy begged, "a safe haven?"

"The lady said to stay put," Dawn commanded.

"There is a problem that has been troubling me," Buffy said, asking for Dawn's opinion.

Dawn stayed silent and waited for Buffy to continue.

"That man," Buffy referred to Ripper, "he takes orders from women, is he feeble in some way?"

"Ma'am," Dawn began, "in the Army we have a saying,'Disobey orders and you'll get yourself and your squad de... whoa."

Dawn looked down at a picture of herself and her 'sister', Buffy. But the woman in the picture with her was a blonde, not a brunette.

"She must be right," Dawn conceded, "we must have some kind of amnesia."

"I don't know what that is," Buffy told Dawn, "but I'm certain I don't have it. I bathe quite often."

"How do you explain this?" Dawn pointed at the picture.

"I don't," Buffy replied, "I was brought up a proper lady, I wasn't meant to understand things, I'm just meant to look pretty and then someone nice will marry me... possibly a barren."

"This ain't no tea party princess," Dawn shot back, "sooner or later you're gonna have to fight."

"Fight these low creatures?" Buffy questioned, "I'd sooner die."

"Then you'll die," Dawn acknowledged, "in fact, I hope you die."

They both turned as a strange man walked in from the kitchen.

"Oh good," the man said, "you guys are alright. It's total chaos out there."

"Who are you?" Dawn and Buffy asked in unision.


Ripper and Cordelia were quickly finishing checking the rooms upstairs as they were told. Well, Cordelia was checking. Ripper was too preoccupied with two problems to even concentrate on the task that was given to him.

The first was how to get Cordelia into bed.

The second, which had been on his mind for some time now, who had cast this spell, and where from?

But since he had gotten nowhere with his second problem, he decided to give it some time, while he concentrated on the first problem.

'Make your move before it's too late,' Ripper thought.

"This the last room?" Ripper asked.

"Yeah," Cordelia answered.

He saw her rub her shoulder. This was the perfect moment.

"Something wrong?" Ripper inquired.

Cordelia hesitated before answering.

"My shoulder's a little sore," Cordelia griped.

"Let me," Ripper said, as he pulled his jacket off her and put his hands on her shoulders and began to rub.

Cordelia almost turn down his request to help, but the moment she felt his hands on her shoulders, she moaned as Ripper's magic fingers went to work.

Cordelia was lost in the pleasure her shoulder's were recieving, she almost didn't notice as Xander's hands traveled down her back.

Her eyes widen in surprise as she felt his hands on her ass.

'To think he was trying to be nice,' Cordelia thought.

With red hot rage buring in her eyes, she turned and slapped Xander in the face.

Ripper was surprised his technique didn't work on the young brunette. But when he was slapped, he saw some images from before the spell was cast. As this bloke, Xander, entered a costume shop wearing HIS jacket.

'Where did that come from?' Ripper thought, 'only one way to find out.'

"Hit me again," Ripper commanded.

Cordelia timidly slapped Xander, confused by what he said, and afraid he might actually hit her back.

"Harder," he yelled.

Cordelia Chase didn't like a lot of things, and one of those things was getting yelled at. Especially by Xander Harris. In her rage clouded mind, she picked up the closest thing her hand could grab, not caring to turn away from Xander to see what it was, and hit him over the head with a lamp.

The body of Xander Harris fell like a ton of bricks, and Ripper almost past out from the blow.

"Bloody hell woman," Ripper yelled, "I said hit me not kill me."

Ripper left the room and headed down stairs, knowing exactly where to go. He left the house without answering any questioins that were shouted out to him and went on his way to Ethan's costume shop.


Rupert Giles was furious. He had planned some light reading for this very night.

He stopped in front of the card catalog and out of habit, he opened a drawer to look up his favorite book.

And was immediately distracted by a more urgent disturbance.

"Bloody stupid Americans can't even alphabatize correctly," Giles annouced to himself.

That led him to organize the card catalog, when Willow appeared, walking through solid wall, in front of him no less.

To say that he was startled would be an understatement. Cards went flying through the air, not just from the fact that Willow had just walked through a wall like it was something she did everyday, but also by the almost revealing attire that the young lady was wearing.

"Ugh...huh...heh?" Giles was at a loss for words.


Chapter 5

'Damn it,' Dawn thought, 'why did he have to leave?'

No one had gotten a response out of Ripper as he ran out of the house. No "wait here I'm going for help", or "I'll be back in five minutes".

"New guy," Dawn pointed, "you take the princess and secure the kitchen."

"Cat woman," Dawn said as she turned to Cordelia, "you're with me."

"But I want to go with the little girl with the musket," Buffy complained, as she saw Dawn and Cordelia leave to another part of the house, while Angel was trying to pull her into the kitchen, "do you have a musket?"


Ripper easily found the costume shop.

'Let's see what you're up too Ethan,' Ripper thought.

The store was closed, the lights inside were off, but the front door was left unlocked, as if Ethan was expecting someone.

Ripper walked inside, but hesitated when he saw no one inside. But he did see candles lit in a back room behind some curtains.

He saw a statue in the middle of the room as soon as he pushed apart the curtains.

"Janus," Ripper stated.

"Ripper," he turned to his right, in the corner was Ethan, with a big smile on his face.

"Ethan," Ripper returned the greeting, "good to see you again."

Ripper in return smirked at his old friend.


"Let's go over this once more," Giles told Willow, "everyone has become what they were dressed as?"

"Yeah," Willow confirmed, "Dawn is a soldier, and Buffy is an eighteenth century woman."

"And you?" Giles asked.

"I'm a ghost," Willow responded, while trying to cover herself with her arms.

"Yes yes," Giles replied, "a ghost of what, exactly?"

Willow closed her eyes for a second, calming herself for what now was the fourth person that thought she was a hooker. Giles didn't say it out loud like the others did, but she knew what he was thinking by the question he had asked, and the look on his face.

"You should see Cordelia," Willow blurted, trying desperately to get the topic off herself, "she's wearing a unitard, with a tail, and cat things."

"My goodness," Giles exclaimed, "she is an actual feline?"

"No," Willow answered, "she was the same Cordelia, only in a cat costume."

Giles eyes grew wide with fear, for the person that Willow had failed to mention, and he was too afraid to ask. But he did anyway, to know the truth.

"And Xander?" Giles asked.

Oh, how could she be so stupid. She forgot all about him, that was a first.

"He changed too," Willow acknowledged, "it was really strange, and he had a British accent too."

"Did he by any chance say his name was Ripper?" Giles continued.

"Yeah he did," Willow answered, "but how did you know?"

"Not now," Giles commented, "everyone who has changed, where did they get their costumes from?"

"We got ours at this new place called Ethan's," Willow informed.

"Let's go," Giles muttered.


"How could you let her get away?" Dawn yelled.

"I was busy fighting," Angel replied, "I didn't let her get away."

Angel, Dawn, and Cordelia were searching for Buffy after she ran from a vampire attacking her and Angel in the kitchen.

"She'll be alright," Cordelia persisted.

"Buffy would," Angel agreed, "But right now, in her mind, she's not Buffy."

No one saw Spike hiding behind a tree, along with a few of his minions, nearby listening on what they had just said.

"Excellent," Spike rejoiced, "a helpless Slayer is the best kind of Slayer."

"Did you hear them kiddies?" Spike turned to the midget demons, "out there somewhere is the tenderest meat you will ever taste."


Giles and Willow entered the unlocked doors of Ethan's costume shop.

"Hello?" Giles called out, "anyone home?"

He was beginning to search the store, when he heard Willow's voice.

"Giles?" Willow whispered.

Willow slowly made her way to the back room, with Giles following right behind her, where they saw a statue in the middle of the small room.

"Janus," Giles pointed out, "a Roman mythical god."

"What does this mean?" Willow asked.

"Primarily," Giles began his explanation, "the division of self. Male and female... Light and dark."

"Chunky and creamy," someone interrupted.

Willow and Giles looked up, and noticed for the first time, the other two men that were in the room. Ethan Rayne and the possessed Xander Harris.

"Oh, no. Sorry," Ethan apologized, "that's peanut butter."

Xander stood in one corner, hands behind his back, eerily quiet. An evil smirk on his face, that sent a chill down Willow's spine.

"Willow," Giles said, "leave, now."

"But..." Willow was interrupted.

"Now!" Giles yelled.

Willow took one last look at Xander, who winked at her, making her blush once again before turning to leave.

"Hello Ethan," Giles greeted his old friend.

"Hello Ripper," Ethan returned the greeting, "I'd like to introduce to you a new friend of..."

But the shopkeeper never finished, as Xander dashed out of the corner wielding a baseball bat, and hitting Ethan Rayne over the head with it.

"So," Xander announced, with an English accent that to Giles felt strange coming from the boys mouth, "what should we do with the old bugger?"

Chapter 6

Buffy was trembling with fear, as a pirate had her corner, afraid that the dirty, ugly man would violate her modesty.

But that was not to be, as Dawn ran straight at the pirate, knocking him away from the frighten woman. Buffy turned to see Angel and Cordelia ran towards her. She hid behind the taller brunette, to put an obstacle between herself and the demon-man.

"What is your deal?" Cordelia asked the frightened Slayer.

"He's... he's a vampire," Buffy cried.

Cordelia turned to Angel to explain Buffy's weird behavior.

"She's got this thing where she thinks..." Cordelia paused, giving up on trying to explain something even she didn't know completely herself, "oh, forget it."

"It's okay," Cordelia said to Buffy, like she was talking to a child, "Angel is a good vampire. He would never hurt you."

"Really?" Buffy asked, a little timidly.

"Absolutely," Cordelia assured, "he's our friend."

They all turned to watch Dawn, as she dodged a few clumsy swings from the pirate before she stomped on one of his feet. She waited for the right moment, before she swung her foot, and kicked him between the legs. The pirate fell to his knees, holding his crotch, and moaning in pain. Dawn grabbed a hold of his hair, before connecting with a knee to the face. Followed by an uppercut that knocked the pirate off his feet and onto his back.

"Finally," Dawn announced, "something this body's good for."

"Guys," Willow called out, running towards them, "guys, you got to get inside."

They were about to ask her why, when they saw Spike and several of his minion's round the corner of the building, and started walking their way towards the helpless Slayer and her group.

"Lets move!" Dawn commanded.


"Well," Giles began, a little hesitantly, "this is a little awkward."

"Yes it is," replied Ripper, "isn't it."

"So," Giles said to his younger self, in Xander's body, "what do we do now?"

"How should I know," Ripper replied, "you're the Watcher, not me."

"This is why I became a Watcher," Giles pointed down at Ethan's prone body lying on the ground, "because I was bullheaded, and prone to violence before thinking about the ramifications of my actions. How are we supposed to break the spell if the spell caster is out cold?"

Giles was surprised when they saw Ethan open his eyes.

"I didn't hit him that hard," Ripper said.

"You know," they heard Ethan's groggy voice, "they say there is something wrong with a person when they start to argue with themselves."

"Ethan," Giles growled.

"What, no hug?" Ethan sarcastically said, while getting up to his feet, "aren't you pleased to see your old mate, Rupert?"

Ethan was rubbing the spot on his head, where Ripper(Xander) hit him with a baseball bat. That was unexpected.

"Traitor," Ethan muttered at Ripper.

"I'm just surprised I didn't guess it was you," Giles admitted, "this Halloween stunt stinks of Ethan Rayne."

"Yes it does," Ethan smirked, "doesn't it. Don't wish to blow my own trumpet..."

"Then don't," Ripper interrupted.

Ethan thought it would be very wise of him not to continue his line of thought.

"This is sick, brutal, and it harms the innocent," Giles claimed.

Ethan really wanted to say what was on his mind, but the look on the boy's face held a certain hardness, that not even the original Ripper had on his best, or worst day, depending on your view point.

"Why did you hit me?" Ethan asked Ripper, "as I can recall, Ripper was always willing to cause a little damage."

"Well, you should have actually thought about the consequences," Ripper advised, "before going with your plan. All of your costumes are of fictional characters except this one."

"If he were dead," Ripper pointed at Giles, "this probably would have worked, and I'd be the ol' Ripper that you remembered. But since he's alive, I wasn't fully possessed. So I'm not the man you once knew."

Giles was surprised at this turn of events, but grateful none the less. He would have hated to fight his younger self, even though it was currently occupying Xander's body.

"Break the spell Ethan," Giles interrupted, "then leave this place and never come back."

Ethan couldn't help himself any longer.

"Why should I?" Ethan asked, "what's in the bargain for me?"

"You get to live," Giles answered.

"Oh, Rupert, you're scaring me," Ethan replied, sarcastically.

Before Ethan could react, Giles swung a right hook to the stomach, before kneeing Ethan in the face, knocking back down to the floor.


Buffy was terrified, the nice man that turned out to be a friendly vampire could no longer protect her, and another vampire with blonde hair, was about to kill her.

Now she was going to die.

"I gonna take my time in killing you Slayer," Spike boasted.


Giles kicked Ethan for the fifth time.

"Tell me how to break the spell," Giles commanded.

But Ethan stayed quiet.

"Let me try," Ripper pleaded.

Giles, with no other option left, stepped away from Ethan to let his possessed charge take a swing at it.

Ripper, not wasting time, went straight to work. Well, he only did one thing. He put the heel of his boot right on Ethan's crotch.

"Now, let's try this again shall we?" Ripper said, before he started to apply pressure.


Dawn struggled again the demon-children's hold on her arms. They were underestimating her. Just because the demon-kids and her were the same size, didn't mean they could control her.

Dawn pushed one of the demons that was holding her, she jabbed the other one in the gut, before shoving it into another demon. She reached down to where her weapon was lying on the ground.


"Break the statue," Ethan rasped, when he could no longer stand the pain.

Giles quickly grabbed the statue, and raised it above his head before throwing it down, the statue of Janus shattering to pieces.


Dawn raised her M-16 to her shoulder to fire...

"Huh?" Dawn huffed, when she saw that the gun was replaced by a toy.


Ethan took advantage of Xander's moment of dizziness, when the spell was broken, to shove the boy with his foot into the wall.

"Xander," Giles cried out when he saw this. He was about to follow Ethan, but was more concerned about Xander's safety at the moment. Hopefully they wouldn't have to see Ethan ever again.

Giles stood as Xander stared at the older man.

"Am I to assume that you have a few questions regarding my past?" Giles asked.

"Yeah," Xander replied, "but not tonight."

Xander stood up, and they began to head out of the shop, when Xander felt like starting a conversation with Giles. Wanting to get to know the older man better.

"So," Xander began, "who knew you actually had a life. And here I thought you were just another tweed-wearing old English guy."

"Some people have a few surprises," Giles chatted, a small smirk on his face.


Joyce was standing in the middle of the Art Gallery, sword drawn and ready to attack, when the spell wore off. The moment of dizziness past quickly, as she took a look around her surrounding. A few of the employee's as well as her boss and a few customers were tied up. She was immediately worried she would get fired. She went to untie her boss first.

"I am so sorry Mr. Allen," Joyce apologized, "I don't know what came over me."

She then noticed the huge grin on his face.

"Joyce," her boss called out, "your getting a raise."

Joyce Summers would have passed out at that moment, if it wasn't for the fact that she had quite a few people to untie, so her face turned red with embarrassment instead.