Author: cobra_7422000 <cobra_7422000[at]>

I own nothing!!

Summary: Xander is finally pushed to far. They say that if you walk into a fight unafraid of the outcome you cannot lose. Xander is going to find out if thats true.


'How could she do this to me?' Thought Xander Harris as he stalked into Willy's bar. He needed a drink badly. He still couldn't get the image of Anya and Spike out of his head. He sat at the bar and slammed his right hand into it.

"Girl trouble kid?" Willy the snitch asked as he walked toward his new customer.

"Shut up and get me a bottle of scotch." Willy frowned but quickly did so. As Xander took his first shot he felt a large hand on his shoulder. He turned his head to see a large pink demon.

"P'ssy demon huh. If the name fits." Xander started to turn back around as the demon spoke in a low gravely voice.

"This is a demon bar. Humans are not welcome." Xander turned and smiled wickedly at the demon.

"If you don't get your hand off me there will be one less demon here." Xander again turned back to his drink but noticed the large pink fist moving toward the side of his face. At the last second he spun the stool he was sitting on making the demon fall on the bar with lack of balance. As Xander spun he grabbed the fifth of scotch breaking the bottle over the demons head and shoving the sharp edges of the broken bottle into the base of the demons skull.

"I should thank Giles for all the hours of research." Xander pushed the body of the demon off the bar and sat back on his stool.

"Willy. Another bottle." Willy nodded quickly and handed Xander another bottle.

"On the house." Willy pointed to the P'ssy demons body and two vampires stood up and carried the body out the back. Willy smiled as he got a very good (to him that is) idea.

"Hey kid. How would you like a job?" Xander took another shot and looked at the bartender uninterested.

"I've got a job." Xander answered as he poured another drink. Willy smiled.

"This pays a lot better than construction kid." Xander looked at Willy interested.

"How much? And what would I have to do?" Willy's smile grew. He knew he had him.

"Around 1500 a night. Two or three nights a week if you can handle it." Xander took another shot and nodded for Willy to continue.

"Meet me here before sundown tomorrow kid. You'll see everything." Xander nodded as he stood taking the bottle with him.

"I'll be here. And if I don't like what I see. Well you know what will happen." Willy nodded quickly as Xander turned and walked out of the bar.


Xander sat on a bench overlooking the ocean. The half bottle of scotch in his hands. He had left Willy's about twenty minutes ago. Xander heard the footsteps behind him. He also knew it wasn't a vampire. A vampire is to freaking stupid to be cautious about walking up on someone.

"Xander?" Buffy asked as she moved behind the bench.

"Hiya Buffster." Xander's speech was only a little slurred as he took another drink from his bottle of scotch.

"What can I do for you?" Buffy sat beside her friend and noticed the bottle in his hands.

"What are you doing out here?" Xander laughed a little and took another drink.

"Waiting for sunrise Buff. I used to do this all the time in high school." Buffy raised her eyebrows.

"What? Get drunk or watch the sunrise?" Xander took another drink and sat back on the bench.

"Both." Buffy didn't know what to say as she stood and held a hand out to Xander.

"Come on. I'll take you home." Xander simply shook his head. Buffy sighed.

"Do you have a death wish?" Xander simply stared ahead of him. His attitude and lack of answering shook Buffy. What did she not know about her friend? Xander downed the rest of the fifth quickly and simply sat there. You could tell by his body language he was used to alcohol. This shocked Buffy a little more. Xander looked at her.

"Go home Buffy. I don't need you to watch over me." Buffy took a step back.

"I'm worried about you Xand." Xander chuckled to himself and threw the empty fifth over the cliff.

"Your worried about me? Bullshit. Just go home Buffy. Go home to your friends and family. Go home to your delusions. Just go home." Buffy shook her head at her friend.

"Its four hours until sunrise. I'm not leaving you out here." Xander shrugged at the blond.

"You think you can make me leave? Your probably right. But ask yourself something. Are you ready to push me that far?" Buffy was in shock. Plain and simple. This wasn't her friend. This wasn't the joking full of laughs Xander Harris she had known since sophomore year.

"What happened?" Xander smiled sadly.

"I've tried to hide from who I am. Who I'll become. Tonight simply pushed me over the edge. I have a feeling I'm going to become my worst nightmare." 'Vampire?' Buffy thought as she sat on the bench beside Xander. She had made up her mind. She wasn't going to leave her friend out here alone. So the two of them sat in silence till sunrise. At that point Xander stood and walked away leaving a confused Buffy behind him.


Buffy walked into the Magic Box to see Giles, Willow, and Tara sitting at the middle table.

"Something is wrong with Xander." The group looked up Tara was the only face with real emotion on it.

"W..Whats.. w.w..wrong?" Buffy sat down with a sigh.

"I don't know. I found him by the cliffs last night on patrol. He was drinking. He seemed really depressed." Willow began to look worried as Buffy mentioned drinking.

"Xander was drinking? As in alcohol?" Buffy nodded at Willow who looked shocked.

"But.. But that's something he swore he'd never do. He knot's what drinking can do to a person." Buffy motioned her to continue and Willow reluctantly did.

"His father is an alcoholic. Has been for as long as I can remember. He beat Xander a lot, Xander swore he would never drink again . Something must have happened. Something big." Buffy looked in thought.

"That's what he meant." The tables occupants looked at her telling her to explain.

"He said that he was trying to hide from who he is. Who he'll become. His worst nightmare." Willow looked at Buffy pleadingly.

"This isn't good is it?" Buffy simply shook her head.


Xander slid into the passenger seat of Willy's beat up 78' Cadillac Eldorado.

"Ok kid. Buckle up." Xander looked at Willy with a frown and Willy started the car.

"And away we go." Xander sat back and sighed as Willy drove toward the interstate.

"Where are we going anyway?" Willy took his eyes off the road for a second and smiled.

"L.A. kid."


Xander stood beside Willy and watched two vampires fight in a cage. Finally two wooden stakes were thrown into the cage and the fight began again. Willy looked at Xander with a slight frown.

"I have to tell ya kid. No normal human has lasted more than two fights in the cage." Xander shrugged and walked toward one end of the cage.

"Records are broken. Am I next?" Willy smiled and nodded.

"Yep. Your fighting a vamp called. Raphael. Think you can take him?" Xander only shrugged. At this point he didn't care. He was going into the fight with utter abandonment. As he slipped of his shirt his eyes and entire stance changed. He was prepared to die if he had to. But he wasn't going alone. No chance in hell. The fight in the cage was over as the announcer walked into the middle of the large *ring*.

"What a match? Next up we have the Vampire Raphael. A newer fighter coming in for his third cage match." The audience erupted with applause and boo's as Raphael a large vampire no more than a year or two old walked into the cage.

"And do we have a treat for you tonight! As Raphael's opponent we have Xander. The first human to step into the cage in two years!! My money's on Raphael folks. As always the minute I leave the fun starts." Xander walked into the cage smoothly. Raphael held his hands in the air and jumped around like an idiot. He thought he'd already won. Xander knew he could win this. He KNEW he could. Xander stood still as Raphael ran at him. At the last minute Xander side stepped and ridge handed the vampire in the throat knocking the vamp down. Xander spun away from the vamp as it jumped to its feet. The vampire charged Xander again who dropped into a crouch and swept the vamps legs out from under it. The vamp went down but was on its feet in an instant. Xander barely dodged a right hook from the vamp. Then kicked out shattering the vamps knee. The demon lost its balance and fell to the ground where Xander began kicking it until all it could do was writhe in agony. Xander was lost in the moment. He didn't stop kicking till a stake impacted the floor beside him. Bending down he picked up the stake and stabbed the vampire in the heart. Dust exploded. As did the crowds applause.

'I can get used to this.' Xander thought as he took in the applause and watched as the announcer counted out his winnings.


Its been a week since that night. Since Xander fought in the cage and won not only money but some respect. Sure it wasn't from his friends but it was respect. And most of the things at the cage were more dangerous than his friends. Maybe not as strong but far more lethal. Tonight had Xander walking through one of Sunnydale's many cemeteries. He didn't have to fight until tomorrow so he was going to do a little workout tonight. His thoughts were interrupted by a moan and a voice saying.

"Oh. Spiky-poo." Xander looked around and walked toward the voice that sounded so familiar. He walked around a tree to see Buffy straddling Spike.

"What the fuck is going on here?!" Buffy stopped moving and both her and Spike looked at him.

"Buger off Droopy." Xander looked at Buffy with wide eyes.

"Get off him Buff. I'm taking you home." Buffy shook her head. Xander sighed the hard way. No.

"I'm staying with my Spikey." Xander smacked his hands over his face and sighed.

"Why don't I just dust your Spikey? How's that?" Buffy looked angry and Spike smiled. Xander really didn't look forward to this. But it was for her own good. Yeah. Right. He was going to die.

"Kill him pet." Xander looked wide eyed as Buffy stood up nodding and pulled on her panties.

"What the hell did you do to her?" Spike shrugged while smiling. And turned to walk away.

"I'll see you at my crypt pet. Make it look like a vamp attack. Don't want anyone being suspicious." Buffy-Boot nodded and walked toward Xander in quick strides. As she got close Xander spun and brought his left elbow down on the bridge of Buffy's nose. He put enough force in it to break even a slayers nose. The only thing that happened was Buffy taking a few steps back and Xander jumping around holding his elbow in pain.

"What the fuck are you?!" Buffy-Bot didn't answer right away she simply hit Xander in the chest sending him back into the iron fence around the cemetery. Xander stood slowly and looked around for a weapon as Buffy-Bot came toward him. Xander saw a part of the iron fence beside him and picked it up quickly. He held it like a baseball bat as Buffy-bot walked toward him.

"Don't make me do this Buffy." Buffy-bot didn't stop and Xander closed his eyes and swung. A twang of metal hitting metal was heard and Xander opened his eyes to some of Buffy-bots skin pulled away. Metal underneath. Xander quickly spun and side kicked the robot into a crypt before hitting it again and again with the iron pole. Finally the Buffy-bot went down and Xander fell a few steps back. He looked in thought then picked the robot up and put it over his shoulder.

"Damn. I wonder if Buff is this heavy." Xander began to walk slowly toward the Summers house.


Xander walked into the Summer's house without knocking. He never knocked. He walked into the den with the Buffy-bot on his shoulder and tossed her onto the couch as Dawn walked down the stairs with Willow behind her.

"What happened?!" Dawn yelled in a panic and flew down the stairs only to be caught by Xander.

"Listen to me Dawn.." Before Xander could speak Willow had flown around him screaming with worry.

"Oh my god. What happened Xander?!" Xander sighed and turned around to talk to Willow when a voice came from the doorway.

"What's going on?" The group turned to see Buffy and Willow and Dawn looked at Xander.

"I've been trying to tell you if either of you will SHUT UP! That's not Buffy." The group looked at the robot on the couch in thought. Buffy walked over to it and sat down noticing the missing 'skin' and indentions on the robots face and body.

"What did this?" Xander sighed and sat down opposite the other occupants.

"I did. Spike told it to kill me. So I had to defend myself." Everyone looked at him. Finally Dawn asked the question.

"Spike?" Xander sighed and leaned back in the chair. Buffy noticed the old and new bruises on her friends face. She also noticed the blood running from his hairline.

"Yeah. Spike. That's his sex robot. And people thought I was hopeless." A voice from the kitchen made everyone turn around.

"Why are all my men in love with Buffy?!" Anya screamed causing Xander to wince and grab his head.

"Will you shut UP!? I got a freakin concussion here!" Everyone shut up quickly as Xander stood and began to walk out the door.

"Where are you going?" Buffy asked as he opened the front door.

"To dust Spike." Anya and Dawn both seemed about to say something but Xander turned on them.

"He told the damn robot to kill me. If anything this should prove that even with a chip the bastard is dangerous. And he's dust. Any of you try to stop me and you might join him." Xander turned and stalked into the darkness of the night, leaving the occupants of the Summers house in complete shock.


The door to Spike's crypt flew open and wooden splinters flew. Xander stalked in a stake in one hand and a 9mm Beretta in the other.

"Honey! I'm home!" The crypt was dark and empty. Spike had flown the coupe when Buffy-bot didn't come back. Xander knew that Spike was gone. For now at least. He heard the footsteps behind him but also smelt the perfume floating off his visitor.

"What Buff?" He turned to face the slayer. Buffy seemed taken back. She didn't think anyone could have heard her approach. Xander slipped the Beretta into his belt and put the stake up his left sleeve.

"What do you want Buffy?" Buffy looked around looking for Spike. Xander noticed and snorted.

"He's gone. The prick must have ran when his sex bot didn't come home." Xander turned and walked past Buffy. He turned as he walked out the door.

"You were going to try and stop me weren't you?" Buffy shook her head and began to follow him into the night.

"Helping was more like it." Xander laughed lightly and began walking into the darkness.

"Night Buffy. Sweet dreams." Xander walked away from the crypt. It was late. And he had work in the morning. And a fight the next night.


Xander once again stepped into the cage. The crowd erupted in applause and boo's. He didn't care. The second he entered the pit the crowd vanished. All that was left in the world was his opponent and himself. Nothing else mattered.

"Alex is back for his second fight ladies and gentleman. He beat the vampire Raphael in a startling upset just a week ago. Today he fights a Molgarina demon who is five fights toward the championship. Can Alex the Protector win the Fight? My money's on the Molgarina demon folks. The fighting will commence when I exit the cage!" The announcer left the ring as the large Molgarina demon walked in. His blood red scales seemed to ooze a green liquid that reminded Xander of snot. He really wasn't sure he wanted to hit him.

"Humans are weak." Xander snorted at the demon and fell into a fighting stance.

"Demons are ugly. Can we get on with this please?" The demon let out a large growl and charged at Xander quickly. Xander was surprised by the large demons speed and barely ducked out of the way of the big demons arms. Xander spun backward and kicked the large demon in the back as hard as he could. The demon staggered forward but didn't fall. Xander gulped.

"This could be harder than I thought." He ducked the right swing from the demon and rolled under the large monsters legs. He needed a weapon. He couldn't beat the demon without a weapon. After all he only had so much stamina.

"Do I not get a fuckin' sword?!" No one answered him and shrugged popping his shoulders as he walked toward the demon. A swift kick to the nuts did nothing to the demon and Xander following it with a spin sidekick to the demon's kneecap. A popping sound carried through the underground arena as the demon yelled more in anger than in pain and backhanded Xander across the ring. As Xander began to stand the Molgarina demon reached down and popped his kneecap back in place. Xander sighed in desperation as he shook his head to clear his vision. He was going to die. What scared him was the fact that he didn't care. He simply didn't care. Xander stood and dusted himself off. A cold look in his eyes as he glared at the demon.

"Time to finish it ugly." The demon did just as Xander expected. He charged. Xander smiled on the inside but his face stayed passive. He let the demon get close. Seven feet. Five feet. At four feet Xander took action. He jumped back and up placing his feet on the fourth rung of the cage and pushed himself toward the demon. Xander wrapped his left arm around the demons throat and grabbed the demon's jaw with his right. As Xander feet touched the ground behind the demon a loud snap echoed through the arena. Xander had won. The crowd sat in stunned silence as Xander wiped the blood from his newly resplit lip. The applause erupted. The vampire with a soul stood near the entrance of the arena, in shock.


Spike stood in Angel's mansion. He was pissed. Droopy had taken his damn robot. . He needed a robot. Especially a robot like Buffy. She was good. Very good. But what would he do? Droopy had somehow stopped his robot. And he had the chip in his head.

"I'll get you for this Harris. But first I have to get this damn chip out." Spike sat down and began to think of a way for revenge. Angelus always was the brains of the outfit. Spike stood pacing the length of the room finally he stopped and smiled.

"Bloody brilliant!" Spike ran from the room into the fading darkness. He had something to do


Xander Harris walked into the Magic Box for the first time in three days. He needed to let his wounds heal. He doubted anyone would notice but better safe than sorry. Right? Xander stepped through the door to see Buffy, Willow, Giles, and Deadboy? What the hell was he doing here.

"Hey Buff, wills, G-man." Xander walked by everyone and into the training room. He knew from the look on there faces they knew something. He felt more than heard them following him. Since fighting in the cage his survival instincts had tripled. He was always prepared. Xander walked into the training room and slipped off his over shirt. Popping his neck as the others came in he started hitting the heavy bag hanging from the ceiling.

"So Xand. What have you been up to?" Xander smiles slightly as he hits the bag with a left right combination.

"Not much Buff. You?" Buffy snorted. Xander couldn't help but smile. Patience was not a slayers strong point.

"We know Xander." Xander doesn't stop hitting the punching bag. His step doesn't change.

"Know what?" Buffy is getting angry. But then. Maybe Angel was wrong. She turned to the dark haired vampire with a question in her eyes.

"Are you sure it was him? I mean this is Xander. Scared and runs for his life if he can Xander." Angel sighs. They really thought little about there friend.

"I'm sure Buffy." Angel walked around and stood beside Xander. He had an idea. One way to get the truth in the open.

"Remember the night in the masters lair? Well. I didn't bring Xander with me. He forced me to lead him. Or he would have gone alone." Buffy is in shock. Xander meanwhile is punching the bag like nothing is going on.

"And that's not all. The night you were in the hospital and I was Angelus. Well I was going to kill you. Or turn you. Didn't matter at the time. Xander stopped him. Stood up to him and faced him down. I know who I saw. And I saw Xander Harris." Xander finally stopped punching the bag and turned around.

"Look. The history lesson was great. Boosted my ego and all. But. What the hell are you talking about?" Everyone looked at Xander as he raised an eyebrow. He really hated dancing around the subject. Well subjects that directly involved him anyhow.

"I saw you at the cage." Angel said stonily. Xander on the other hand nodded and shrugged.

"So?" Everyone in the room face vaulted as Xander turned back to the bag and began to beat on it again. Buffy was the only one to regain her voice.

"So? SO?! What do you mean SO?!!" Xander sighed and turned back to the group.

"I mean I don't get the big deal." Xander picked his over shirt up off the floor and slipped it on. Willow finally found her voice.

"You could die." She said this low. Very low. Xander turned and looked at her.

"Big deal." Everyone stared wide eyed and opened mouth. Xander just said he didn't care if he lived or died. Buffy stood defiantly in his way.

"Your not getting out of here without help." Xander did the only thing he could think of. He laughed.

"What do you care? Why do you all of a sudden care about my well being? It isn't like you've cared about it the last two years." Buffy took an involuntary step back. She realized as she looked at the angry young man in front of her that she knew nothing about her friend.

"Now get out of my way." Xander spat the words out full of venom but Buffy didn't move.

"You think because you took a copy you can handle the original?" Xander shook his head and sighed.

"No Buff. You can take me. No doubt about that. But. I won't be as easy as you think. Just back off Buffy." Xander tried to walk out into the main section of the Magic Box. His only thought was to get out of the store into the darkness that he hid in. But he had a 5'4 blonde in his way. And not a normal 5'4 blonde. No she was a slayer.

"I didn't want to do this Xander." Buffy swung a right to her surprise Xander stepped back and kicked forward hitting the slayer in the knee. As Buffy fell forward Xander unleashed an uppercut hitting the slayer's jaw and knocking her on her back.

"We don't have to do this Buffy. I don't want to fight you. "Buffy kippup'd to her feet and charged. Xander did the only thing he could do. He went in close. Buffy was used to fighting opponents at a distance. Xander knew that IF he had any chance at winning it would be to get in close. Unfortunately, Buffy raised her knee and planted it into Xander's stomach. Xander turned to his left with the blow and backhanded Buffy on the back of the neck. Buffy rolled with the blow and jumped into the air kicking Xander in the chest, knocking the young man off his feet. Xander flew three feet in the air sliding to a stop. He winced as he felt a rib that had either been broke or severely bruised. Buffy wasn't playing today. The group of spectators watched in shock as Buffy charged. Xander sprung into the air performing a spinning sidekick that hit the slayer directly on the nose. Blood splattered slightly as Buffy fell to the ground and rolled away. As she stood a little slower than before she noticed Xander holding his ribs. His eyes showed no pain however as he took in shallow breaths.

"Give up Xand?" Buffy asked as she wiped the blood that was under her nose. Xander shook his head and stood up straighter.

"You'll have to kill me first Buff." Buffy seemed taken back by his declaration. But she was the slayer. If she had to beat some sense into Xander... She would. As simple as that. Well she thought it would be that simple. However Xander had proven to be a greater adversary than she thought. Buffy shook her thoughts away and moved in. She quickly went into a left, right combo which Xander blocked. However he couldn't block the kick to the back of his left knee causing him to lose his balance. Buffy took full advantage hitting Xander between the eyes with a right hook. Xander spun and fell taking Buffy's legs out from under her as he did. He shook his head and got to his feet just in time to block the incoming attack from a petite slayer. Most of the punches and kicks Xander blocked. But the ones that did get through were doing a damn good job of hurting him. Xander decided on a last ditch effort. He slammed into the slayer with his full weight landing on top of her. He put his knees on her elbows. She might have supernatural strength but she only weighed 110 or so. That was he best advantage. He pulled his fist back to hit Buffy with her legs moved up and wrapped around his head. He fell back and rolled slowly to his feet. As he stood he was ten feet away from a slayer. He was beaten and bloody. But he thought with little satisfaction that she was to. But he couldn't lie to himself. He was done for. He could barely stand let alone fight. Xander took up a classic boxers stance and waited for Buffy's attack. He didn't wait long as she ran at him full speed. Xander used his right hand to deflect Buffy's right hook toward her left arm. He quickly sidestepped and hit Buffy across the bridge of the nose with a ridge hand. Buffy's feet kept moving but her upper body didn't. She fell flat on her back her nose bleeding again. Xander carefully limped away from her as she groaned and stood up. Xander closed his eyes and breathed in deeply quickly regretting it as a sharp pain overcame him.

"I won't give up. I won't give up." Xander whispered to himself low. Only Angel heard his mantra but he also heard the grating of two of Xander's ribs. He didn't think the young man would last to much longer. But. Before the fight he didn't Xander would last ten seconds.

"Giles we should stop this." Willow said as she watched her to best friends fight each other without pity. Giles was in shock. Not just at Xander's fighting ability. Although it was close to exceptional in his book. He was impressed with the young man's resilience to pain. Giles knew that Xander must have at least one cracked rib. Not to mention a broken nose. Yet he was still standing. Still fighting. Giles didn't know a human that could take full power blows from a slayer and walk away. Well until now that is.

"Just quit Xander." Buffy said as she moved toward him slowly. Xander shook his head and concentrated on his breathing. As Buffy moved forward slowly Xander attacked. He moved in fast and he hit full force. His right hand landed an open palm strike on Buffy's stomach causing the slayer to gasp in shock and pain. As Buffy's upper body fell forward Xander twisted his right arm bringing his right elbow into the slayer's forehead. Buffy fell back but as she went kicked Xander in the stomach with a front snap kick. Buffy fell on her back but was up quickly. Xander on the other hand fell to one knee and tried to control his breathing. He knew just as well as anyone else he didn't have a chance. He was done for. But he wouldn't quit. Xander stood slowly on his weak legs. Breathing as shallowly as he could as he held up his fist.

"Not gonna happen.... Buff." He said with a heavy breath. He wavered slightly on his feet but he didn't fall. Everyone was slightly amazed at Xander. He wouldn't give up. Not a chance in hell.

"I believe that's enough Buffy." Giles said with his slow drawn tone. Buffy looked at him in shock but stepped down like he told her to. Xander looked at everyone then limped out of the store. All eyes on his retreating form.

"I better go help him." Everyone looked at Angel in shock. He looked back at them.

"He has two broken ribs. And probably a few other things." Angel began to walk toward the exit.

"By the way. You could have handled that better Buffy." Buffy didn't answer as Angel walked out of the shop. Buffy looked at the floor. She doesn't really know why she went so far on Xander. Why she didn't hold back.


Two nights later found a still bruised Xander walking in the crowded room of the bronze. Maroon5 were playing as he sat at the bar and ordered a drink. A waitress moved and sat next to him as he took a drink of his coke.

"Damn. What happened to you?" Xander turned and looked at the waitress while sighing. Finally he chuckled.

"Pissed off the wrong girl." The waitress laughed as she sat down on the stool beside Xander. Xander took another drink of his Coke and started to stand.

"Where are you going?" Xander shrugged as he stood and began to turn from the waitress.

"I'm Xander." He didn't hear the girls name as he walked through the dance floor and out the side exit door. He had a fight tonight. The championship as a matter of fact. He sighed as he walked toward Willy's.

"This is going to be fun." He said to himself as he walked down the alley. He didn't notice the blond haired vampire following him.


"Jesus kid. What the hell happened?" Willy asked as Xander took his shirt off before entering the cage. His ribs were heavily taped and bruises were clearly visible on his chest. Xander only began stretching.

"Tried to go ten rounds with a slayer." Willy's eyes widened as he began coughing.

"You fought the slayer?" Xander shrugged as he tried to touch his head to his knees.

"Tried." Willy chuckled as Xander began to walk into the cage.

"Maybe I should try to post pone the fight kid. Your in no shape for this." Xander shook his head as he breathed semi-deeply.

"Nah. The worst that can happen is I die. No biggie." Willy sighed and shrugged. Then turned around and began to walk toward the stands.

"Whatever you say kid. But you better win, I don't want to lose my best investment." Xander chuckled slightly.

"I can just feel the love." Xander began to jog slightly in place as the announcer walked into the center of the cage.

"Ladies and Gentleman! We have a treat for you today! For the first time EVER a HUMAN Xander is fighting for the CHAMPIONSHIP. After winning five fights in a row he has been challenged by the reigning champion Grendel to a death match. The winner is the Cage Champion!" Xander walked into the cage at the same time as the Grendel. Xander knew the stories. Giles had mentioned how the story of Beowulf was loosely based on the these demons. He knew that no weapon could kill it. But Xander didn't worry about that. Not for the moment anyway. The people in the stands caught his eyes. Buffy, Willow, Giles, Tara, Angel, Cordy, and Wesley sat in the stands. Xander shook it off and began to walk forward. The announcer turned and ran from the cage as Grendel moved forward as well. The fight was about to start.


"Look at the size of that thing!" Cordelia screamed as the Grendel and Xander stood five feet apart. The Grendel was easily a foot taller than Xander and at least another foot broader.

"Does he stand a chance Angel?" Cordelia asked with thinly veiled caring. Angel shrugged and watched the cage.

"He's already injured Cordy. But he might have a chance." Cordy nodded slowly as she looked at the ring. She took a quick glare at Buffy.

"So if Muffy wouldn't have beat him up he would have a better chance." Angel only nodded. Buffy looked at her feet, nothing more was said as the Grendel charged Xander.


Xander knew everyone here was against him. He was sure that even his *friends* were thinking he would be dead in seconds. Especially with his injuries. It was this feeling that drove him to prove them all wrong. He was angry. But he wasn't mad with rage. It was simmering just below the surface. He just hoped he didn't explode.

"You. Are. Dead. Human." The Grendel said through a very deep and annoyingly nasal voice. Xander shrugged and popped his next.

"Heard that before. I keep thinking one of you might actually be able to do it. Then you prove me wrong." The demon growled and charged. Xander in the heat of battle rolled out of the way hitting his hurt ribs on the ground causing him to wince and momentarily stop. Grendel took advantage of this move and wrapped Xander in a bear hug from behind lifting the young man off the ground and putting tremendous pressure on his already cracked ribs. Xander quickly slammed his left leg backward hitting the Grendel between the legs. He heard the demon scream in pain and then felt the ground return to his feet. He rolled away as the Grendel fell to its knees. Xander stood up slowly and kicked out catching the Grendel under the chin. The Grendel landed on its back and rolled to its feet then charged. The Grendel's shoulder hit Xander in the upper chest knocking the young man a good eight feet back. Xander landed on his feet but slid to his knees holding his ribs.

"Your gonna pay for that." Xander said as the demon walked toward him. Just as the demon got in reach Xander jumped forward upper cutting the Grendel. As its head snapped back Xander turned landing a spinning sidekick on the tall demon. The demon fell back a few steps and held his hand signaling that the champion wanted his sword. Xander had to think quickly. No weapon created by man could hurt the Grendel.

"Give me a wooden stake!!" A stake found its way into his hand as he started to think of a way to get close to the Grendel.


"Bloody brilliant!!" Giles yelled as he watched Xander maneuver around the Grendel the wooden stake held tightly in his right hand.

"What are you talking about Giles? You think he would have gotten a sword or something." Buffy said as she looked at her watcher in confusion. Giles sighed and counted to ten.

"The Grendel cannot be killed by weapons forged by man. Wood isn't created by man. The stake may be able to kill the Grendel. That is if Xander can get close enough." The roar of anger from the Grendel brought the scooby and fang gang back to the fight. What they saw made them sick. Xander was holding his right shoulder blood oozing between his fingers. The blade of the Grendel's sword glistened with red blood.

"I can't just watch this. I'm going to help him." Buffy stood only to be blocked by Angel.

"His fight. Not yours. SIT." Buffy looked hesitant then tried to push by Angel. She felt a hand on her shoulder and turned to see Giles. He shook his head.

"But. Giles, he could die." Giles nodded before he spoke.

"He knows this as well. Sit down Buffy. Or leave." Buffy sighed and defeat and sat down beside an equally worried Willow.

"He..He'll be okay Buffy. Don't worry." Willow tried to sound confident. But she failed miserably.


Xander knew he couldn't last much longer in this fight. He was winded and wounded. Also he was way outclassed. Not just in size but also in weaponry. The Grendel's 52 inch broadsword had a lot more reach than his 15 inch wooden stake. He was almost screwed. I say almost because he had one more trick up his sleeve. He was thanking Wills that she made him read Beowulf in high school.

"Ya know. When I get done with you I think I'll pay your momma a visit." The Grendel roared and charged. Xander didn't know weather to smile. Or shit himself. Right now he settled for looking like a badass. Xander knew he couldn't sidestep the charge so he did the only thing that came to mind. He jumped straight into the air planting his feet on the Grendel's knees and brought the stake down from over his head. The stake hit flesh between the Grendel's neck and collar bone. Breaking through the skin and the muscle tissue like a knife through butter finally piercing the beast heart. Xander pushed off the demon and landed on his back. Spent. He watched as the Grendel swayed on its feet then fell like a tree. Xander sighed and began to laugh slightly. His laughter grew as the applause of the audience roared through the arena. Xander lay on the ground laughing as he was named the Cage Champion. The very first human to ever gain the title.


The blonde vampire stood in the shadows. Shock evident on his face.

"This might be harder than I thought." Spike threw his cigarette to the ground and turned to walk away. He had things to do.


His right arm in a sling and his ribs taped tight Xander and Willy walked toward Willy's beat up Caddy.

"You made over 60 grand tonight kid. After my ten percent.54 grand is your take." Willy handed Xander the money. Xander knew Willy probably had another ten in his pockets but left it alone. He could always get it later. Willy looked Xander up and down.

"You should take off for a couple a weeks kid. You look like hell." Xander just nodded and opened the passenger side door of the caddy. He climbed in and the ride to Sunnydale went by in silence.


The scooby gang rode back toward Sunnydale in shocked silence. They had just watched there friend Xander. Helpless little Xander. Kill a demon of champion proportions. Unreal.

"That was disturbing." Willow said slowly. The rest of the gang nodded in agreement as they fell into silence once again.

"Where did he learn to fight like that?" Buffy asked breaking the silence for the second time in five minutes. The gang simply shrugged. The only person not in shock was Giles. He just stayed out of the conversation. He couldn't believe the lack of faith the children had in Xander. Finally he could take there talking no more.

"Enough! I've had all I can take. You lack of faith in Xander is disturbing. When have you known him not to be by your side? When have you known him to run from YOUR fight? He's done more for all of you than you know. Now shut the bloody hell UP!" The car lapsed into silence. For about five seconds.

"What do you mean by that?!" Giles sighed and listened to his slayers tirade in patients. After all. He was British and all British men had patients. He hid the sinister smile on his face at the thought of strangling Buffy.[


Spike sat in the dank basement with star wars paraphernalia along the walls.

"Can you take it out?" Spike asked Warren who shrugged.

"I'm not sure. But I could probably short it out. Make it where it won't work anymore." Spike seems interested and sits up straight.

"How? Bloody well tell me!" Warren stepped back in fear and nodded quickly.

"EMP." Spike raised an eyebrow causing Warren to sigh.

"Electro magnetic pulse. It should fry the chips circuitry." Spike nodded willing to try anything.

"What do I do mate?" Warren seemed in thought.

"Have you ever seen Toy Soldiers?" The only thought going through Spikes brain? 'Bloody Hell.'


"That's right Spike. Put the metal bar between the." His words were cut off by a loud scream followed by an explosion. Spike lay on the ground, his cloths smoking and his blond hair black.

"Blooody....he..ll." Spike fell unconscious. Warren looked at Spike and finally let a thought enter his head.

"What was the chip for anyway?"


"We cannot have a human champion!" The large dog looking demon screamed at his henchmen.

"Elimenate him! I want him dead by his next fight." The group seemed indecisive at that. They weren't sure they could or even wanted to kill Xander. He'd made many friends in some and respect from all.

"I'll pay you double the usual fee." The demons began to move. After all. Friend or not. Money talks and bullshit walks. The demons moved from the room slowly. All of them had the same thought. Willy.


Two nights later.

Xander sat alone in his apartment. His arm was healed well enough to take off the sling and his ribs were healing faster than normal. He always healed fast. The way he figured it in two more days he would be back to normal. Or as close to normal as usual. He took a sip of his beer and relaxed into his leather recliner. He loved this. The quiet time where he was able to think. His phone rang breaking his concentration and he picked it up on the third ring.

"Xan...der?" Xander heard the low and choked voice rasp out.

"Willy? What's wrong?" He heard sharp breathing on the other line.

"Get... the... hell.. outta.. Dodge kid. There comin... after ya." Xander's face showed confusion.

"What? Who's after me?" Before he got an answer the line went dead. He sat the phone on back on the table and looked in thought.

"Damn." As the word was uttered he was in motion heading for his bedroom. For his weapons chest. He heard his door bust inward as he jumped and rolled into his bedroom. The pain in his ribs only touching the back of his mind as he pulled him weapons locker from under his bed. Opening the locker the first thing in his vision was a wooden stake.

"I didn't invite the damn thing in so I know it isn't a vamp." He pushed the stakes aside and pulled a short wakisashi from the locker with his left hand and a Beretta 92f with his right. He stood to see an eight foot tall blue demon blocking his exit. Xander sighed in exasperation and started fireing. He aimed for the head but the demon just charged. Xander didn't recognize the demon and that was a problem. Usually he knew the demon and there weaknesses. Xander side stepped and lashed out with the short sword only to have it blocked by the demons bony forearm. Xander twisted bringing his right hand toward the demons face pulling the trigger as the barrel pointed even with the eye. The demon fell back screaming in pain but not before lashing out and catching Xander under the chin with a backhand. Xander fell into the window of his apartment breaking it and almost falling out. He caught the edge of the window seal behind his knees and struggled to sit up and fire two more shots into the still standing demon. The demon staggered back with each shot and finally fell. Xander pulled himself back into his bedroom ignoring the blood seeping through the back of his shirt. He walked over to the fallen demon and put the tip of the pistols' barrel on its one good eye.

"Who sent you?" The demon moved slightly but didn't answer. Xander felt dizziness welling in his mind. He looked at the demon once more then pulled the trigger. He stood slowly and walked from what was once his apartment. Grabbing a jacket and a few weapons on his way. One thing was for sure. He lost his lease.


Xander half walked half stumbled into Willy's bar. He pushed his way through the overturned tables and shattered chairs to make his way around the counter. There was Willy beaten and broken lying on the floor. Eyes open. Chest still.

"I'm sorry Willy." Xander stood and began to move when he noticed a note in blood on the floor.

"Lylicue." Xander read outloud. His face turned into one of rage and hate.

"He doesn't know who he's messing with. Not yet." Xander turned and walked from the destroyed demon bar. He needed to get fixed up a little. After that. It would be game time.


"Hold on a bloody minute." Giles yelled as someone pounded on his door. It was early and he was tired. The sun was just coming up over the horizon. He opened the door to see a bloody and barely standing Xander Harris.

"Hey G-Man." Xander walked past the stunned Giles and took off his jacket. Giles saw the blood covering the young mans back and immediatly went to get his first aid kit.

"Take off your shirt Xander." Xander nodded and did as asked. He didn't even comment on Giles wanting his shirt off. Giles definatly knew something was wrong now. Giles walked behind the still standing Xander and winced.

"Bloody hell Xander you still have shards of glass in your back." Xander was still quiet as Giles gently pulled the shards of window glass from Xanders back. The sound of glass falling on metal was all that was heard in the apartment for the next few minutes.

"What happened Xander?" Xander winced slightly as Giles rewrapped his ribs and back.

"The boss don't like having a human champion Giles. It put a hit on me. Damn now I sound like someone out of the godfather." Giles didn't chuckle and Xander didn't smile. They both stood in thought. Xander broke the silence.

"They killed Willy. Before he died he called and warned me." Giles sat down on the couch and Xander sat in the closest chair.

"I'm sorry Xander." Xander nodded more to himself than to Giles.

"In a way he's been my only friend for the last few months. I guess he thought that to. Instead of calling an ambulance he called me. Thats gotta count for something." Giles nodded. He had come to the same conclusion. Giles looked at the young man in front of him.

"What are you going to do?" Xander sighed more to himself than to Giles. Quickly putting on one of Giles's shirts.

"I can't take them on like this. I need to wait a few weeks. Get in better shape. Then. I'm going to send them back to hell. In pieces." Giles nodded at the young man's words. Xander was angry. Not just for Willy. But for himself and everyone else Lylicue messed with in the past. And he wanted just a little vengence.

"I'm going to L.A. Giles. Don't tell anyone. I'll be back when this is over. Maybe." Giles nodded slowly before handing Xander his car keys.

"Be careful." Xander looked at the keys in his hands then shook Giles's hand.

"If I don't come back.Tell them.. Tell them I love them." Giles nodded quickly.

"Of course." Xander smiled and began to walk away. As he reached the door and opened it he half turned.

"That goes for you to G-Man." Before Giles can answer Xander is gone. A car starts outside and drives away.

"I know Xander. I know." Giles sat down sighing. Then stood and examined his weapons.


Xander limped into Angel Investigations. The ride to L.A. didn't help his back or ribs any. He walked up to the counter and looked around.

"Anyone here?" He asked getting no answer for a few seconds before Cordelia walked out of the office.

"Angel Investigations we help the... What the hell happened to you?!" Xander grimaced as Cordy ran over to him and Angel and Wesley came out of the office.

"Are you alright Xander?" Wesley asked quickly as he and Cordy led Xander to a sofa.

"I'm fine Wesley. Just feel like I fell into a mafia movie thats all." Everyone but Angel looked at him in confusion.

"They put a contract on you?" Angel asked carefully. Xander nodded yes and sighed.

"They killed Willy. Now there after me. I just need a place to heal for a few days. If thats alright?" Angel and Wesley were going to answer but Cordy beat them to it.

"Of course its okay. Come on I'll show you your room." Xander nodded and stood up slowly. Before he got to the stairs he turned to Angel.

"Would you train with me in a few days?" Angel nodded in the affirmative and Xander turned and walked after Cordelia. Angel and Wesley stood at the bottom of the staircase.

"Is this wise Angel?" Angel didn't answer right away. He turned and began to walk back toward the office.

"Would it matter?" Wesley smiled slightly.

"I don't think so."


The blond vampire sat in a chair. His feet on Lylicue's desk and a smirk on his face.

"I can take care of the brick layer for ya. For a price." The dog looking demon growled in its throat at the vampire.

"I'll pay you what I said I'd pay everyone else. Not a penny more. If you don't want the money get the hell out." Spike chuckled as he lit a cigerette.

"Now now. Calm down doggy. I'm going to take care of your little problem. Keep your money. All I want. Is some of your power. You make me a partner I'll take care of droopy. Deal?" The demon growls again. He had to much money invested in the Cage to let a human screw it up.

"Deal. Now take care of it!" Spike stands putting his cigerette out with his foot on the demons' floor.

"No problem mate. I think its time to start a new family." Spike walked out of the office. His last sentence lingering in the air.

"I hope droopies worth the trouble."


Xander and Angel stood facing eachother on the training mat. Xander was beginning to regret asking to train with Angel. Fighting a vamp was a lot easier when you could actually dust it.

"You know if I could dust you I would have already won." Angel chuckled as he attacked with a high roundhouse kick. Xander dunked the kick and spun out his right foot knocking the vamp on its back. Xander jumped forward only to get Angel's boot heel to his chest. As the two stood and circled eachother.

"Your good for a human Xander." Xander smiled and slightly chuckled.

"Your not bad for a bloodsucker Angel." Angel snorted before standing out of his fighting stance.

"Thats enough for today Xander. Lets get a drink." Xander raised his eyebrows.

"I'm not really into the O- stuff." Angel smiled.

"Me either. I'm a B+ man myself." The two men shared a chuckle before Xander shrugged..

"As long as it isn't blood I'm game." Angel nodded as they walked into the elevator.

"Trust me." Xander's face went slack.


It had seemed like ages ago when Xander said he didn't care if he lived or died. And now he was basicly fighting to live. Well thats not exactly true. He was fighting to take down the bastards that wanted him dead. If he happened to fall in the process. Well Shit happens sums up his motto. Angel and Xander walked into Caritias like they owned the place. As they walked in a green horned demon flew over to them.

"Hey Peaches! Listen Angel-baby no singing for you tonight. Maybe later. Whose this?" Lorne finally to a breath. Xander was trying not to laugh as Angel seemed to look embarrased.

"Lorne. This is Xander. He's singing." Xander straightened up quickly.

"I am not singing!" Xander said with determination.

Twelve shots and three boiler makers later.

"I'm a cowboy. On a steel horsey I ride. Wait wait. Is it horsey or horse? Never mind doesn't matter. I'm a cowboyyyyyyy-" Xander sang drunkenly his movements rapid and uncoordinated. Angel grimanced as Xander finished the chorus.

"There is no way I'm that bad." Lorne snorted and siped his drink.

"Wanna bet baby face?" Angel glared at Lorne as Xander stumbled off stage. Lorne looked at Xander and sighed before turning to Angel.

"We need to talk."


"How long?!" Angel screamed and looked over at the unconciese form of Xander Harris.

"Two weeks Angel cakes. The kid has a death wish Angel. And if he keeps this up its going to be granted." Angel sighed and closed his eyes.

"Can you tell me who and how?" Lorne shook his head sadly.

"It doesn't work that way Angel. I get the beginning and the end some little pieces in the middle. All I know is that in two weeks the kid meets the grim reaper." Angel sighs for the third time in five minutes and walks over to Xander.

"Not if I can help it. Thanks Lorne." Lorne waved him off with his hand.

"Think nothing of it sweet cheeks." Angel walked out of the bar with Xander draped over his right shoulder. The whole time thinking that something was about to hit the fan.


"So pet. Seen droopy lately?" Spike asked as he and Anya walked toward the Magic Box.

"No Spike." Spike walked slightly behind her and vamped out.

"Let me ask that again." He grabbed Anya by her shoulders and slammed her against a building.

"Have you seen Droopy?" Anya shook her head quickly.

"No. No one has seen him in a week or so. I don't know where he is Spike." Spike smiled. And leaned close to Anya.

"Thats okay pet. I need you to find him though. Give him a message. He's on borrowed time." Spike quickly punched Anya on the left side of her head knocking the young woman unconcieuse.

"That is if something doesn't find you here tonight." Spike smiled, lit a cigerette and walked into the darkness. Anya's limp form on the sidewalk behind him.


Xander sat in front of Angel as he was told that he would die in two weeks. He found himself calm. Accepting even.

"Look Angel. If its my time to go. Its my time to go. I'll fight it but there might be nothing you can do." Angel shook his head no. He wasn't going to accept that. He'd saved a lot of lives and he knew he could save one more. Well he hoped anyway.

"Look we need to work something out. Do you have any enemies?" Xander looked at Angel like he was stupid.

"Right. Dumb question." Xander sighed shaking his head. This was going to be a tough couple of weeks.

"Its' name is Lylicue. It's the boss of the cage matches. I guess it's like the Don King of the underground fighting world." Angel nodded for Xander to continue. Xander sighed and started to speak again.

"My guess. He doesn't want a human champion. After all humans are supposedly weak. So. Kill me. New champion. No more human to beat the hell out of the things that go bump in the night." Angel nodded but seemed hesitant to believe this. Xander again sighed. This time out of frustration.

"Look. Lylicue has a LOT of money invested in this. He's not going to risk any of it because a human is the champion." Angel could kind of understand this. After all he always thought of humans as weaker. At least physicly. And to a point he still did. After all Xander couldn't beat him. But he also couldn't beat Xander. Not in the short run anyway.

"I'm going to see what I can find out. You stay here." Xander snorted and rolled his eyes.

"Yes mommy." Xander stood and walked toward the elevator. He needed to train.


"Oh god. Anya what happened?" Willow asked as she manuvered her 'friend' of sorts to the table in the center of the Magic Box.

"Spike." Anya couldn't say anymore because Willow cut her off.

"Spike did this? I thought he was all chippy and non-human hurting." Anya painfully shrugged.

"He told me to give Xander a message. He's on borrowed time.. Or something just as corny." Willow didn't really hear the last comment. She was to busy yelling at Buffy who was in the training room with Giles. She and Giles ran through the door into the main shop ready for battle.

"Spike is after Xander." Buffy nodded slowly.

"So? The billy idol wannabe can't hurt him Wills. Chip remember." Willow rolled her eyes and pointed at Anya whose face was swelled and purple. Buffys' eyes' went wide and she walked over to Anya.

"Spike did this?" Anya nodded before screaming.

"YES! He did this. And if I still had my necklace I'd so wish him castrated." Giles took a step away from the angry ex-demon putting the counter between Anya and himself.

"We have to find Xander!" Buffy said with authority before she noticed Giles fidget slightly.

"You know where he is." Giles didn't answer. That was answer enough.

"Where is he?" Buffy almost growled out. Giles sighed and picked up the phone.

"Is Xander there? He's not. Well tell him that Spike's chip has malfunctioned and we think that Xander is a target." Giles thanked god the gang couldn't hear Cordelia's screaming from across the room.

"Goodbye." Giles hung up the phone promptly cutting Cordy off in the middle of her tirade.

"He is warned. That is all we can do at the moment." Buffy began to walk toward Giles menacingly. And Giles actually had a little fear in his eyes.


13 days later.

"Where is Xander?" Angel asked as he walked into the building. Cordy looked up from her nails and began to talk.

"He said he needed to find someone. Said he'd be home later." Angel sighed and took a seat. All he could do was wait.


Xander walked out of the club slowly. He noticed the tail before he had moved from his table. As a matter of fact he was counting on it. He new there were at least three. But he prepared himself for more. He walked into the parking lot. The three vampires surrounded him. Two infront of him and one behind. 'This is going to be easier than I thought' The one behind him moved first. Wrapping Xander in a bear hug as the two vamps in front of hims charged forward. Xander kicked off the two vampires and brought the back of his head into the vamp holding him. As the vampires' hold loosened Xander grabbed the vamps right hand between its thumb and forefinger spinning the vamp into a arm lock before shoving its' head through a car window. Xander turned side kicking a charging vamp in the throat. The fledgling grabbed at its throat on instict not noticing the wooden stake that was sticking out of his chest. Dust. Xander surveyed the parking lot for the third vamp but didn't see anything. Turning back to the vamp who's throat had been cut when its head was shoved through the window he pushed a stake up against its chest.

"So. Where's Lylicue?" The smile on Xander's face only proved one thing. He wasn't pulling punches.


Xander walked into Angel Investigations with clear even steps. He didn't notice the scooby and fang gang in the room as he moved straight toward the weapons cabinet. He opened the cabinet quickly and pulled out Angels' favorite broadsword. He quickly grabbed a few stakes and some holy water. As he turned to leave he noticed the scoobys.

"Hi." Xander began walking toward the door only to be intercepted by a blond slayer.

"Where are you going?" Xander looked Buffy straight in the eyes and said with absolutly no emotion.

"For a pizza." Xander tried to sidestep Buffy only to have Angel in front of him. Xander sighed and stepped back.

"Okay. What the hell do you want?!" Buffy and Angel both took a step back, but quickly stood there ground again.

"Where are you going?" Buffy asked again with more determination. Xander sighed and closed his eyes.

"The Cage. I need to end this." The room felt the emotion in his voice. He needed this closed. Maybe then he could live. Maybe.

"Your going by yourself?" Xander nodded and saw that Buffy was going to object. Before she could Xander started talking.

"I won't just be facing demons Buff. He has humans on his payroll to." Buffy was silent for a moment. Only a moment.

"What are you going to do to them?" Xander looked her dead in the eye as he spoke.

"Evil isn't only in demon's Buff. And evil needs to be destroyed." Buffy was shocked by the statement. But was shocked moreso that she understood it.

"You shouldn't kill humans Xander. No matter what the cause." Xander breathed deeply.

"What about Faith? Sure you didn't kill her but you would have. And almost did. Hell you thought you did. And your reason's aren't as noble as mine." Buffy looked away for a second locking gazes with Angel.

"I'm going Buff. You know you can't stop me short of killing me. And by the time we're through I'll have less of a chance to make it." Angel sighed and shook his head.

"You don't have much chance anyway Xander. Remember. The host said you would die tonight." Everyone looked at Xander who was glaring at Xander.

"I don't plan to die tonight Angel. But if it happens. It happens." Everyone in the room stared at Xander in shock. Giles spoke up first.

"I'm going with you Xander. Unlike the other's I have no problem against going against another man." Xander looked at Giles for a second before he answered.

"Sure you do. So do I. I just can't let it effect me. I treat this like a job. Just like the soldier did." Giles was shocked.

"You still have the soldier memories?" Xander shook his head no before talking.

"Just his ideals G-Man. His memories are gone. But I remember some of his morals." Giles nodded. Some of the soldier personality must have been close to Xander's own. They somehow mixed together. Or maybe. Xander's personality was a perfect match. The soldier just made it seem like he'd already killed.

"I still wish to accompany you. If you would let me." Xander closed his eyes for a moment before he nodded.

"Just be careful Giles. I can take loosing my life. But not any of yours." Giles nodded and moved toward the weapon's cabinet pulling an double sided battle axe from it. Wesley seemed in thought before he walked over and pulled a broadsword. He noticed Xander looking at him in question.

"Your a friend Xander. I don't have that many." Xander nodded at the man with a newfound respect.

"Look. We are going to be badly outnumbered tweedmen. I'm talking 50 to 3. It would be better for you if you stayed here." Giles and Wesley ignored the tweed men comment and shook there heads.

"It might be better for us. But it would be worse for you." Wesley said as he grabbed a few stakes and put them in his pocket. Everyone else in the room was watching them. Angel walked forward.

"Besides its 30 to 4." Xander couldn't help but smile. The only people that hadn't stepped forward were Buffy, Willow, Tara and Cordelia. Cordelia walked up behind Angel.

"If I tell you no you'll come anyway won't you?" His friends and team nodded in the affirmative.

"Lets go." Everyone aside from his three Sunnydale friends followed him out the door. Buffy looked at the weapons cabinet and the three moved and pulled out there weapons. Three crossbows a few stakes and a sword. They were going to help as much as possible. And with two Wiccas and a Slayer they could help a lot.


The team stood on a rooftop looking down at the large warehouse that housed The Cage. Angel, Wesley, and Xander stood looked over the edge while Cordy stood back.

"How do you want to do this Xander?" Angel asked as he hefted his broadsword. Xander bit his lip.

"I want you Giles, and Wesley to go around the back. Cordy you stay here. Me. I'm going right through the front door." Everyone looked at him and nodded. Well except Cordelia.

"Are you crazy?!" Xander motioned her to be quiet before speaking.

"They know I'm coming. They don't know any of you are." Everyone nodded understanding his reasoning.

"Lets go." With Xander's command the team seperated.


As Xander walked toward the front door he heard a noise behind him. He spun quickly on to lay eyes on Buffy Summers.

"What are you doing here Buff?" Xander asked as he took a glance at the door behind him.

"Willow and Tara are around back with the others. I'm going in with you." Xander sighed and shook his head.

"Why are you doing this?" Buffy walked toward him and placed a hand on his cheek.

"I'm not going to let you die Xander. You have to much to live for." Buffy moved her hand and walked toward the door. Before she reached it she heard Xander's voice.

"Like what?" Buffy stopped walking as her hand reached the door.

"Like me." Xander didn't have time to comprehend her statement as she walked in the door. He followed milliseconds later. Filing her words in the back of his mind for later use. If there was a later.


To say all hell had broken loose would be an understatement. Bodies and dust covered the floor of the hallway as Buffy and Xander moved foward carefully but effectivly. Xander's Beretta bucked in his hand as he squeezed the trigger. One man, Two men. He took them down with a grizzly efficency that seemed to be natural. His face seemed cold and impassive. But his eye's conveyed his inner turmoil. Evil was Evil. But that didn't make his JOB any easier.

"We're almost there Buff." Buffy only nodded as she dusted another vampire. Number four by her count. Xander had took out two vamps and three men. Buffy couldn't look at the bodies of the men as Xander kicked open the door at the end of the hallway. Xander laid eyes on The Cage again. But that didn't bug him. What bugged him was that his friends were in the middle. Weaponless and surrounded. He moved in quickly and stopped when Lylicue's voice echoed through the arena.

"Do you want to save them Alexander? There is a way you know? Simply fight. Like all the times before." Xander watched as the group of demon's seemed to flow apart and Lylicue and Spike walked into Xander's vision.

"Heya Droopy. Ready to go?" Xander glared at the blond vampire before shrugging out of his jacket and lifting the sword in his right hand into a defensive posture.

"Whenever your ready overbite." In the span of a few seconds the ring was clear. The demons and Xander's friends all walked out knowing that this was something that had to be done. Xander and Spike simply glared at eachother for a few seconds. Then. Spike charged.


The fight was on. Xander was moving faster than ever before as he evaded Spike's sword strikes and sent some of his own toward the vampire. Xander hadn't faced an adversary of Spike's caliber. Spike was after all a 180 year and some change master vampire. He was stupid and full of himself but he was also strong and experienced. Xander knew things were not going well. Spike lunged and Xander spun to the left and toward the vampire. Xander wrapped his left arm around Spike right and jerked back hearing pop as the vampires shoulder was pulled from its socket. Xander finished the spin by sweeping Spike's legs from under him before Xander could capitalize however his own feet were removed from the ground. Both fighter rolled away. There swords forgot on the floor of The Cage. Xander jumped forward this time only to get a swift snap kick to his ribs knocking him back a few feet and to his knees. Xander rolled away at the last second. As he reached his feet he lashed out a side kick catching Spike in the chin and driving the vampire back a few steps. But Xander didn't stop as the kick connected Xander jumped and spun landing another sidekick on the vampires chin. Spike fell onto his back and rolled with the momentum coming to his feet only to meet with an open palm strike to his chest and a snap kick to his groan. The 'little bad' as he liked to call it would not be committing any acts of evil for a few weeks. Xander spun again slamming his left knee into the side of the master vamps face before bringing his right knee into the demons' chin. Spike lashed out with an uppercut to Xander's stomach taking the young man off his feet and knocking the wind from his lungs. Xander began to gag as what he had eaten earlier tried to make a return. Spike stood slowly and shook his head.

"Not bad Droopy. Your better than I thought." Spike moved in kicking Xander in the ribs with enough force to break twol. Xander went with the blow and landed on his back he kicked out and knocked Spike off his feet. Quickly standing Xander stomped on the vamps ankle shattering it then limped back as Spike scrambled to get up. Xander held his ribs for a moment before breathing slowly and standing up straight. He and Spike stared at one another. Spike favoring his right leg. His left ankle as a impossible angle. Xander ran at Spike and uppercut the demon on the chin. Then cracked the vamps cheekbone with a left hooke before following his combo with a right elbow. He was about to attack again when a sharp pain in his stomach stopped him. He looked down to see a short dagger in his stomach. The handle sticking out. Luckily the dagger had went in toward the side. Xander took a few steps back and fell to his knee's. He pulled the dagger out slowly. The screams of his friends barely heard above his own screams of pain. Spike was smiling through it all. His cheekbone seemed sunken in and his chin looked shattered. But the bastard was smiling through it all. Spike took a few steps away from Xander before speaking. He was about ten feet away when his mouth opened.

"What a champion. Don't worry Droopy you gotta be the toughest human I've had the pleasure of killin. Hell I'm going to put you right under my killin of two slayers." Xander barely listened to Spike's speech. He saw something beside him that intrested him much more.

"Well time to die Droops." Spike started to move forward but stopped as Xander rolled to right grabbing his forgotten broadsword by the hilt and throwing it like a spear at William the Bloody. The sword hit flesh just below Spikes' rib cage and sliced easily through skin and muscle tissue. It finally stopped its trajectory half way through the vampires spinal cord. Spike stood a look of shock on his face for a second before falling backward in a heap. Xander stood slowly picking up Spikes' sword as he went. He towered over the fallen vampire the sword in his hand.

"Sorry Spike. I'm not letting you have the bragging rights." With his last ounce of strength Xander took the head of one of the most dangerous vamps in history. And William the Bloody turned into just another dust pile. Xander saw his friends rushing toward him. Buffy in the lead. Then. He saw black.


Xander awoke two days later in an L.A. hospital. He was sore to say the least. That didn't suprise him. What did suprise him was the head of blond hair on his chest and the hand that was holding his tightly.

"Buff. Buffy you can wake up now." Buffy awoke slowly. Very slowly. She blinked a few times before she noticed Xander was awake. Then her eyes went wide and she hugged him quickly.

"Your awake!" Xander just nodded and groaned. He had one hell of a headache.

"Why am I alive. Not that it isn't a good thing but I didn't expect it." Buffy glared at him for a few seconds before sighing.

"Does it matter. Your alive. And you better not ever do anything like this again!" Xander grimaced and nodded. When he opened his eyes Buffy was staring at him. Not glaring. Not looking. But staring. As if seeing something she hadn't seen before.

"I couldn't stand loosing you Xand. None of us could. Promise me you won't leave." Xander nodded and tried to get comfortable.

"You know. When you get out of here. Maybe we could have dinner?" Xander's eyes flashed open quickly and he looked at Buffy in shock.

"Are you asking me out?" Buffy nodded cautiously. Xander half smiled.

"Sure. It'll help me heal faster anyway." Buffy smiled and Xander closed his eyes' again.

"So. What do we do now?" Buffy's question was unanswered for a few seconds. Finally Xander began to speak.

"See where the road takes us Buff. But I know one thing." Buffy looked curiously at her new boyfriend. At least they both hoped he was her new boyfriend.

"What?" Xander smiled slightly.

"It will be a whole lot better without Billy Idol." Buffy and Xander chuckled for a few seconds before the room fell into silence. Not an uncomfortable silence. Just a peaceful one. Buffy broke it after a few minutes.

"I'm going to tell everyone your okay." Xander nodded his eyes still closed as Buffy walked from the room. A smile on her face. Both had high hopes for the future. Xander lay in his hospital bed. And for the first time in a long time. He was glad to be alive.