Betting Against the House

Author: Iscariot <iscariot[at]>

Well, here we go - my first Fic for the Xanderzone. It's not beta-d, but I thought it better just to get it out there and see if people like the idea - if they do i'll continue it.

If I do continue if won't be at the same speed as the Epsom-Tenhawk model

Usual disclaimers - and aplogies to various authors and a whole lot of cultures various mythologies.

Rating: PG13 for a whole lotta swearing :)

Ships: X/OC [maybe - we'll see]

This is supposed to be vaguely funny.

Feedback please - or just tell me if you hate it.

The Mansion of the Gods.

A normal day: By God-like standards anyway. Glistening marble columns…well…they glistened, and the on-duty choir of angelic beings waxed lyrical in a rapturous ode to something only the gods understand. The noonday repast had just finished and various, sundry divinities either lay in various states of god-like repose or went about the appointed duties gleefully smiting or occasionally blessing the swarming mass of humanity beneath them.

Yet even unto the sated bliss of Gods and Goddesses shall come the bitter stench of disquiet…

"Hey fucknuts, pass the ambrosia."

"Screw you, you pissant Summerian pretender, you should spend less time talking out your ass and concentrate on burning bushes."

"Up yours goatfucker, burning bushes is a Jewish thing, and that tightwad Yahweh gets his bloody toga in a twist every time one of us damages the local wildlife."

"Who are you calling a goatfucker, it's not my religion that was banned due to massive stock losses."

So much for divine dignity…

"Would you two please shut the fuck up, I'm trying to watch TV;" came a voice from behind a potted palm. Closer inspection revealed a heavily bearded being of stormy visage being fed cherries by a slightly plump cherub whilst relaxing on a plush, heavily embroidered velvet recliner, before him the divine equivalent of a fifty-four inch plasma screen displayed an every changing panorama of images.

"What's on the box today your gloriousness? Watching more porn auditions in Los Angeles perhaps, or maybe you're cruising the topless beaches on the Riviera. You know, if Hera catches you perving at naked chicks again she's going to rip your beard out."

The divinity in question, aware only too well of what happened last time his wife had caught him mucking about with someone other than her, winced. However, since it was considered bad form in divine circles to act submissively, Zeus prepared to smite his tormentor, "How do you feel about a thunderbolt up your backside…."

"Feeling inadequate again are we? You and your bullshit thunderbolts, we all know that you're making up for something, and that Hera keeps your balls in a box under the bed, so just give it a rest."

If the bearded being could have got any angrier it's probable that he would have combusted on the spot, instead, bile rising, he snarled "I'm warning you goatfucker….."

"Hey! You ever seen an Incan goat?….He's", indicating his Sumerian counterpart, "the goatfucker…so lay off." Pausing to recover some of his dignity - and his massively feathered headdress from where it had fallen during his somewhat rabid denunciation of a goatly fascination – the South American deity returned, more of less, to his initial question; "Anyway, what you watching?"



"Sunnydale…you know…playground of the Powers that Be and their rinky-dink slayer."

"Slayer? Oh yeh, I remember, vampire central. Didn't old Yahweh banish Lucifer there when he started making institutional changes in hell."

"You're not supposed to charge the tortured souls rent, numb-nuts." Chipped in the third of the divinities, who was starting to feel somewhat left out. "Last I'd heard he'd been setting up a ratepayers association when the Great Bearded One floated down on a cloud, massed choirs of angels in tow, you know, the whole nine yards, and told the Lightbringer that bureaucracy was an even greater form of blasphemy than rebellion and that he was fired."

"How'd Luke take it?"

"Not too well apparently, you know what his temper's like. Anyway, he called the old man out, told him to pull the harp out of his butt, get off his floating pillow and fight like a divinity. Yahweh, being Yahweh, merely did his 'I am the King of Kings and Lord of Lords' speech, clicked his fingers and now Luke's flipping burgers; someplace called Doublemeat Palace, apparently it's worse than Hell.

"I think the Powers' latest red-shirt is working there too," on receiving his colleagues confused glances, he added, "You know, the Slayer, didn't you ever watch Star Trek? You know…security guards…expendab….." he sighed "Never mind. "Anyway the sign-on benefits for slaying obviously aren't that great if she's working there."

"Maybe she's there out of love."

"You've obviously never tasted a Doublemeat burger then."

"And you have."

"I was visiting Luke and he gave me a freebie, must be his idea of a joke. Anyhow, I think if the Slayer's working at a fast-food joint that's because of the Witches Coun…"


"Watch what?"

"Watchers Council, not Witches…" was the patient correction.

"Whatever. Anyway, whomever they are, they never going to win a Better-Business Bureau award, apparently they have a higher employment mortality rate than the Postal Service."

"That's gotta hurt."

"What would you know about hurt, moron, you're invulnerable."

"…I hurt; it hurts me, for example, that you have delusions of divinity….goatfucker."

"I'll show you delusional you…."

"Would you two please shut up. Now, about Sunnydale since you said you were interested. It seems like the social committee have organised the next apocalypse for Sunnydale and I was just checking out the action before making a bet."

"Who's running book?"


"And you thinking about making a bet, that guy's more bent than a toilet convention."

"That's why I'm watching, I'm going to influence things a bit." "You want in?"

"That depends on what you're going to do, the last one of us that crossed Loki got fed to that damn dog of his."

"I wouldn't let Fenris hear you calling him a dog, or you'll wish you really did fuck goats for a living."

"True enough. So what's the deal?"

"Thought I'd boost one of the local talent a bit. Now. I can't touch the slayer as the Powers would throw a tanty and there's only so much divine whining I can take in any given millennia. The witch is off limits as her goddess is banging Loki at the moment and it'd get back to him."

"She still with him then? I thought she'd developed some taste; guess it must be some sort of earth-mother thing, either that or an extended sympathy fuck. I honestly didn't think she'd wallow in self-pity as much as she has since the younger Shrub nuked Kyoto." The Sumerian shrugged, "So, who are you going to hit, as it were?"

"Him." The Father of the Greek gods indicated a somewhat shambolic figure who was displaying all the grace of a jelly in a high wind in stopping a vampire's attack with his face."

The other two deities looked askance. "Well, so much for subtlety. What you going to do?"

"The usual, boost the physical, raise the mental, you know the drill."

"I haven't done that in ages, not since I gave Gilgamesh delusions of adequacy. Mind you, at least he wasn't a complete write off – if you ignore the megalomania. Your guy on the other hand, well; I've seen epileptics in the middle of a grande mal show greater co-ordination" The Sumerian suddenly grinned, the expression giving him a somewhat roguish appearance, "He runs well though. Are you going to do anything else, other than the power-up?"

"Thought I'd send Terpsichore, to give him a hand. She's been parked on her ass for the last two thousand years and keeps complaining about being bored."

"You're sending your dancing girl? Are you completely off your head?"

"Well, I guess it all depends on what you call dancing, because sure as eggs aren't apples what they call dancing in Sunnydale bears little resemblance to anything done in four/four time."


"What about you, Sumerian?"

"Well Nidaba threatened to burn the archives down if I didn't give her something to do, so this should keep her out of trouble for a bit, and if nothing else should balance out your girl. What about you, goatfucker, you in?"

The Incan displaying massive dignity in ignoring the cheap jibe, pretended to consider. "Why not. In fact, I'll go myself, keep and eye on the children, as it were, and I don't mean the human."

"You're just a tad obvious There's not a huge number of seven-foot beings in feathered head-dresses wandering around down there."

"I can do undercover."

"Of course you can."

"Don't you patronise me you little shit."

"Play nice you two. Look, for the sake of my sanity, can't you just send a representative like we are?"

"Fine, I'll send a coatl, happy?"

"Like there are thousands of winged serpents flying around down there too, do you even understand the concept of obvious?."

"The coatl can disguise itself, unlike you, it's intelligent. Anyway, every boy needs a dog."

Just as the three beings were departing, a muffled thump returned their collective gaze to the centre of the room, there, before them, stood - if stood is indeed the correct term – what appeared to be a suitcase with many, many legs; it glowered menacingly at the assembled divinities. Zeus raised his eyebrows, then shrugged eloquently.

"Alright, alright, you can go too, but you have to behave."

The luggage merely glowered some more.


Meanwhile, in Sunnydale:

"Dammit Xander, pay attention, or do you want to get bitten?"

"Sorry Buff, I could have sworn I just saw a…" Xander paused to reconsider what he was about to say; being as he was already in enough trouble for one night. "On second thoughts, never mind."

"Xander" the tone while deceptively mild wasn't fooling the young man "Tell me what you think you saw, or I'll rip out your lungs and mount them on either side of your head and call you Dumbo."

"Weeeeeellllll, I think I just saw asuitccaseeatavampire."

"You think you saw a suitcase eat a vampire? Would you like to perhaps reconsider that statement, while you still have your health?"

"Let's just forget it, OK? Please? Buffy?"

Hanging his head in defeat the young man slowly turned and followed the rapidly departing slayer. Unseen, in the bushes, the Luggage watched and if anyone had been around – and assuming they spoke luggage, which is a language that even the universal translator struggled with – they would have seen the particularly hard look it gave the slayer before, on silent cat-like feet, it started to follow Xander home.