I Am Become...

Author: Mark Zimmerman <zimmo67[at]yahoo.com>

DISTRIBUTION: Not too fussed. Glad you want it. Just give me holler if you do take it.

DISCLAIMER: All things BtVS related belong to Joss Whedon and M.E. Highlander stuff is Panzer/Davis and Rysher. I believe that 20th Century Fox is involved somewhere in there as well. Definitely not me.

SUMMARY: A Highlander/Buffy cross. Well sorta. Mainly a what if Xander went as something else on Halloween. A bit late for the challenge from earlier I know but thems the breaks.

FEEDBACK: Would be nice.


RATING: PG-13? Same as the show. Nothing major happening here.

BETA READ: MS Word (shrugs - relying on the libraries and occasional net cafe so posting and sending stuff for Beta is pretty irregular)

RELATIONSHIPS: None currently but it might change if I expand on the idea.

SPOILERS: Season 2 - Halloween

AUTHORS NOTES: All the stories I've read with Highlander crosses don't really consider how immortality would affect ones psyche. The idea I have sorta changes that. I mean how would you react if you suddenly woke up to find you would live forever and had five thousand years of memory shoved into your skull? Memories that centred on bloodshed and death. Me personally? I'd probably end up in a rubber room wearing an I-Love-Me jacket. On a further note; the word 'Seps' is Cockney rhyming slang for Yanks. (Seps = Septic Tanks = Yanks). Just thought you colonials on the other side of the pond would like to know that
<evil grin>
This is still rather rough, needs polishing and extending. Cookie to whoever recognises the quote the title is based on. Life time supply of Martian Rocks to whoever can correctly name where it came from (both sources).

Chapter 1

The beginning
(or Death takes a trip to the Hellmouth)

Xander sat huddled in the basement, mourning the loss of who he was and raging against fate for who he had become. It had all seemed so simple. Get dressed up for Halloween and look after the kiddies. Only nothing was ever simple on the Hellmouth. An old friend of Giles had come and wanted to have some fun. Needless to say Xander had become the universes butt monkey yet again.


"So I thought I would go as Methos, you know the guy from 'Highlander'" Xander said to the proprietor who'd introduced himself as Ethan. Buffy had already paid for the Noblewoman's gown that she was going to wear that night. A gown she was going to wear to impress her 200-year-old undead boyfriend. A concept that confused and disgusted him. She was supposed to kill the damn things not go out with them!

"It's possible I have what you require. Let me check the back." Ethan said with no outward show of emotion. Internally he was throwing a parade. The mere thought of what could occur tonight had him shivering with anticipation. Alongside all the demons and whatnot that would be running around, there would be a member of the Four Horseman on the loose. At least if his memory of the show served him right.

He returned a few minutes later with a scruffy beige mac, what the Americans referred to as a trench coat, and a long sword. Xander's eyes widened as he saw the blade.

"No need to worry. It's not real." Ethan said seeing the stare even though he was lying through his teeth. "It's a replica of what's known as a Norman Long sword. It was patterned on the blades used by the French when they invaded England in 1066 and later used by the Crusaders when they fought in the Holy Land in the eleven hundr…"

"How much." Xander interrupted. Sheesh this guy was as bad as Giles with the boring history lessons. Maybe it was an English thing.

Ethan frowned slightly at the interruption. 'Bloody Seps!!' he thought viciously. The frown smoothed out and was replaced by a smile. The boy would be getting his soon enough. He handed over the blade and watched the inexpert swings Xander made. It wasn't a replica but an actual blade, almost 900 years old. Its edge was as keen and bright as the day it was forged, something that Ethan found puzzling but shrugged off as the care the previous owners had lavished on an obvious heirloom.

"Call it 30 dollars." He said with a shrug.

It was Xander's turn to frown. 30 bucks was way more than he had on him. Maybe if he raided his moneybox he might be able to afford it.

"I don't have that much with me. If I go home I might be able to make it up."

"Well what do you have on you then? I'll be closing soon and you might not make it back in time."

"About 15 dollars." Was the reply.

"Very well. Give me what you have and pay me the rest when you return it. I'll need some ID for my records though."

Xander shrugged and fished out his wallet. 15 dollars of assorted notes and coins was dumped on the table, as was his driver's license. He signed the receipt and Ethan passed over the props with a smile.

"Remember to let everyone know where you bought it from and have fun." He called as Xander left.

"Uh sure." Xander replied before the door swung shut behind him. He didn't see the evil grin on the proprietors face as he left. It might have saved him some grief if he had.

End Flashback

He gave a choking laugh. A sobbing noise that skirted the edge of hysteria. Once they were dressed up and had gone outside was when the faecal matter had really met the rotating air movement device. Ethan had cast his spell and Xander's life had been changed, as he suddenly became someone else. Someone with more sins on his soul than all the serial murderers combined throughout history. He should know being the prototype the others were all based on.


"Let the outer become the inner!" Ethan finished with a flourish. He groaned in pain and collapsed as the power of his patron, Janus, began to pool within him. The power continued to build, tearing a scream from the mage's lips as it roared into him, a torrent of vast size that was as unexpected as it was painful. Eventually it reached a crescendo and with a roar it blasted out from his body, the spell flying out into the night. He gave a faint groan before collapsing in a dead faint, a trickle dribbling from his nostrils to drip off his chin. And still the power continued to flow.

The magic rushed out and all over those that had bought their costumes from Ethan changed. Only a small portion was needed for most of it, the main bulk of power searching for one specific individual. It found him eventually.

Raw agony skirled along Xander's nerves as the magic burned along them. The pain and the power built until with a piercing scream and a flash blue electric light he toppled over dead. The magic ignored his state of non-life and latched onto his soul as it tried to flee his body. It wrapped around it trapping it like a fly in amber. Finally enough power accumulated and it struck, blasting into the soul with strength backed by a God. Xander's soul was smashed into wakefulness as power flowed into it like a river in flood.

Methos had taken many heads in his long life and the spell's power was there to reflect that as it merged with Xander's soul. A sliver leaked out and lashed at the world, drawing in knowledge. Xander's, or more accurately Methos', Quickening ignored the fact that by all rights it should not exist as it locked in the memories of a past long gone to dust. Occult knowledge from various sources was obtained and catalogued as it came streaming in. Demons, magic and myth intermingled and were stored, to be used as needed by the host. Survival instincts and knowledge of warfareand weaponry were added to the mix.

Everything was grist for the mill as a new being was created. Finally the memories were complete and the Quickening focussed its attention on the physical shell of its host. His limbs quivered as power rushed through them, strengthening him. The Quickening neither knew nor cared that the memories and personality it was creating wasn't real, merely a figment of Hollywood's imagination. It didn't even care that by all rights it should not exist either. The costume had demanded the soul be active and so it was. Eventually all work ceased and Xander's limbs stopped their tremors. A flash of power and his heart restarted.

With a gasp the body sat up reflexively and Methos opened his eyes in confusion, unsure as to what had happened to him. With a groan he levered himself to his feet cursing quietly in Sumerian. A car had probably hit him as he stumbled home drunk. Ever since he'd told Duncan what he had been, the stiff-necked Highlander had refused to have anything to do with him. A rejection of a cherished friendship that drove him to drink. Well, more than he usually did.

End Flashback

Oh yeah, then it started to get hairy. He knew of vampires but hadn't realised he was on the Hellmouth as beasts from man's imagination had run riot in the streets. A ghost claiming to be his friend Willow, not that he remembered her, had found him and the whole sordid tale started to be unravelled. The two of them had eventually found the Slayer, a girl by the name of Buffy. Like him she too had been changed and had no concept nor awareness of what a Slayer was. Willow had eventually left to tell Giles about what had happened leaving him to try riding out the rollercoaster that the evening was becoming. Keeping track of Cordelia, another friend he was supposed to know, and Angel, the souled Vampire, had left him with very little patience. That had finally snapped when the noblewoman had fled screaming into the night when she realised that Angel was a vampire after he had 'vamped out' during an assault on the house they were in. Eventually it had all been sorted out when Giles confronted his old friend Ethan and revoked the spell.

With the ending of the spell normality had returned to the Hellmouth. Or what passed as a reasonable facsimile thereof. Well for everybody but one Xander Harris that is. See, he'd kept the memories. Five millennia's worth. Centuries of torture, murder and rapine. Rupert 'Ripper' Giles had terrorised London for a few years and caused the death of a relatively minor number of people. Angelus and his crew had been the Scourge of Europe for just over a century. Xander however could remember being part of a terror that had held three frigging continents in its iron-fisted grip for over a thousand years. How did one deal with the guilt of murder on such a scale? Even though technically he hadn't murdered anyone. But technicalities be damned, his memories claimed it was him that had done it.

So he huddled there in the dark, with only his memories for company as the tears ran down his cheeks. Tears shed for the loss of innocence, the acknowledgement of guilt and rage at the unfairness of it all. And through his tears he watched the glowing blue sparkles of his Quickening as the cuts he constantly slashed into his forearms healed up again and again.