Metaphysical Insertion

Author: Alan Podjursky <alan.p[at]>

Summary: The author is thrown into the thick of things.

Category: Self Insertion

Disclaimer: I own nothing but myself! And I!

Feedback: Only positive!

Crossovers: Ah! My Goddess, the real world

Pre-fic Comments: This is in the grand tradition of Carrotglace, Hung Nguyen, Twister, and many other highlights of fanfiction.

"* blah *" means mental speech only heard inside one head.

Latest addition


Hild tapped the sphere in front of her. Who needed cable television, when you could see directly what people dreamt of?

She stopped on a universe created by someone's mental musings. It was a Buffy the Vampire Slayer universe, strongly divergent from the original creation. It had a tie-in to another universe -- the Forgotten Realms. Hild quite liked the Forgotten Realms -- she had a bet going with Lloth on when Vhaeraun would realise she knew all about him.

How delicious! The White Knight of the Slayer's gang as Drow, skilled in torture and trained in assassination! Even better, the supports of his world hunting him, believing him to be someone who her subordinates took lessons from!

What underling created this variant? Whoever it was deserved closer examination. Hild's fingers moved slightly, following the connections that the Universe had.

The strongest one was to a mortal! She picked through the man's head, discovering him to be the creator of that world. His mind was wonderfully hazy in morals, continually wandering from laughing at dark fantasies to insomnia, thinking of more ways to twist his creations. She found more ties to other worlds from him, in which one he'd managed to ensnare Eris and a minor Spirit.

Daimakaicho Hild decided to give him the chance to take a more hands on approach.

She created another copy of the man's mind, melding it slightly with Nidheg, the energy that Hell runs on. Next, she split another variant from the original canon, fresh.

Xander Harris... yes, the man seemed to take a special interest in the one normal man in that universe. She looked further back in Harris' family line. How ironic -- he was part of what he fought!

Hild always did have a soft spot for her incubi and succubi, even their mortal descendants.

Chapter 1

I was sleeping when it happened, so I don't really know what being copied felt like. All I knew was a sudden waking.

I blinked. I wasn't in bed any more -- I was in what seemed to be the open air, mist swirling around me and... a woman.

She merited a closer look. She had tanned skin, a hair ornament holding her white locks back, a five pointed star on each cheekbone, and a six pointed star on her forehead.

"I suppose you'd like to know why you're here," she said, a slight smirk creasing her lips.

"Of course not," I dryly said. "You're Urd's mother?"

Hild nodded.

"A shame she won't call you mother," I said. "If she acknowledges Kami-sama as her father at the same time, I see no problem."

"She doesn't want to face her darker side," Hild said. "That's why she drinks so much. But Urd isn't why I brought you here."

"Oh?," I asked. "Prey tell."

"Quiet, 'prey'," Hild said, catching my inflections. A smile took the bite from her words. "I've been rather impressed with the worlds you've created with your fiction."

"Always good to get feedback," I said. "Coin of the Realm, as a better writer than me said."

"I've decided that you can take a more... hands on approach," Hild told me. "You're going to be in the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, to get some first hand experience."

I blinked. "A self insertion fic? But they're so... common... in most fandoms."

Hild smirked again. "Not, however, Buffy. You won't be entirely powerless -- I've decided to give you a connection to Nidheg. And also my telephone number."

"Does this mean I'm going to see you again when I die?"

It never hurts to know how the story goes before you start.

"Whether you'll like that depends on how well you do," Hild stated. Her smirk had disappeared, by now. "Enough talk! It's time to send you on!"


Xander stumbled on the patrol as his head hurt for a second.

"Xander, are you okay?," Giles asked. "We can return you to your home if you want, then continue this."

"I'm okay," Xander said.

"*Oh good,*" I said. "*Because I'm not okay.*"

"Or not," Xander said. "Uh, Buff, Giles did you just hear that?"

"Hear what?," Buffy asked. "Only people here are you, me, and Giles."

"*How insulting,*" I dryly observed. "*I no longer count as a person.*"

"I think I'm hearing voices," Xander said. "Uh, you think that reptile boy didn't die maybe?"

"I-I don't know," Giles said. "Does this v-voice sound threatening?"

"*Only if you come between me and my vices,*" I muttered. "*I'd think something threatening about Giles but, hey, Ripper!*"

"He just said 'only if you come between me and my vices'," Xander reported. "Uh, and something about you and someone called Ripper."

Giles straightened up a bit. "This may merit further investigation. Buffy, do you feel able to continue the remainder yourself?"

"Sure," the Slayer said. "Only this graveyard, then Eternal Rest, then home!"

"Er, right," Giles said. "Xander, come with me. I'll try and find a reference to this Machida and possession."


"*For a guy with lots of books, Giles sure is thick,*" I said. "*For the last bloody time, I am not a snake demon, nor am I a hyena spirit, nor am I Eyghon or any other lousy demon you care to mention!*"

Xander dutifully relayed my message to the Watcher, who was searching through his apartment for a book he remembered as having a catalog of demons prone to possessing people.

Giles paused. "Xander, ask this voice if it has any methods of verifying it's statements."

"*Oh, for the love of...*"

I took over Xander's body, moving jerkily to the telephone and dialling Hild.

"I hope you don't mind me making a long distance call," I said. "Well, it doesn't bloody matter if you mind, because I'm doing it anyway."

"Very well," Giles said with remarkably poor grace. "But hurry it up."

I waited for the other end to pick up.


"Yeah, it's been a blast, but I'm having some faith problems. Can you send someone to verify that I am me, and I am not Machida or the Hyena or Eyghon or whatever boogy man Giles comes up with next?"

"I'm sorry, but Xander's trying to take control of the body again and--"

I was cut off from the conversation as Giles decided to brain me with the book he was reading, and Xander took control back.

"Owwwww," Xander said.

"*Stupid asshole,*" I muttered.

"Hello?," Giles said.

He blushed then paled. "Uh, p-please don't c-come here?"

"Hello? Hello? Seems the line has gone dead."

Xander got up and sat in one of Giles' armchairs. "That voice has to be a demon of some sort."

Giles nodded. "Do-do you know who he just called?!"

"Uh, not really," Xander admitted. "He just called, then chatted with her."

"That was the ruler of Hell!," Giles said. His hands were shaking badly.

"H-Hell?," Xander asked?

"*Daimakaicho Hild,*" I cheerily confirmed. Xander ignored me and thus Giles didn't hear me.

"Well," Giles said, cleaning his glasses. "We can safely assume that this voice is not a possession by one of our previous enemies. Although, with the telephone call, I think it is safe to assume that the voice is demonic in origin."

I took over Xander's mouth again. "For the love of... look, I know what's coming. I know what enemies are going to come after you guys. I know what allies are going to come. I know what allies are going to become enemies. If you push my buttons, I know how to fuck you guys over badly. I also know how to make your lives a cakewalk."

"Why is nothing ever simple?," Giles moaned.


The Hellmouth flared, as a humanoid figure lurched through, unguarded by the Slayer.

Chapter 2

I sighed as Xander wandered to the costume shop. Halloween was a few nights away, and Xander had failed to avoid conscription by Principal Snyder for kiddie patrol.

"*Snyder is almost as big an asshole as your dad,*" I said.

"Shaddup about my dad!," Xander muttered. A passing kid gave him a strange look.

"*True, though,*" I retorted. "*Learnt anything about my hints, have we?*"

"You were right," Xander admitted. "Okay, Voice, got any more brilliant tips for the X-man?"

I was tempted to screw him up, but the idea of leaving anything to chance didn't sit well with me.

"*Regarding this upcoming Halloween. I don't think you should dress up as a soldier, considering how the military would deal with the supernatural,*" I said. "*Guns are useless on vampires.*"

"Come on," Xander argued. "What's the chances of something happening?"

"*Gee, I dunno,*" I snakily snapped. "*What's the chances of your previous principal being eaten by his own students? What's the chances of a really dead Incan mummy girl trying to seduce you? What's the chances of your new Biology teacher turning into a six foot tall bug?*"

"Okay, there might be a point buried in there, Voice," the youth admitted.

"*Now you're getting it,*" I said. "*And don't call me Voice.*"

"Don't tell me what to do," Xander replied.

"*This is the Hellmouth. If something can go wrong, it will,*" I said. "*Strolling along without looking for the uglies ahead will kill you.*"

"Okay! I got it!," Xander shouted.

A six year old girl pointed at him. "Mummy, what's wrong with that man?"

The woman smiled nervously, pulling her offspring along. "Ignore the crazy man, darling."


Xander flicked through the costumes at the shop.

"Nothing here," he muttered. "It's all demons or fairies."

The shopkeeper appeared nearby. "Are you having trouble, sir?"

"I'm just looking for a good costume," Xander explained. "These are all the same."

I took over his body for a moment as inspiration struck.

"Have you got any priest outfits, a pair of white gloves, a pair of fake long knives, and a grey long coat?"

"As it happens, yes. They didn't sell too well last year, and I'm trying to get rid of some old stock. Perhaps we could... work something out."

"*What are you trying to pull?!,*" Xander yelled.

"*Relax,*" I said. "*Vampire hunting Vatican priest sounds good, yeah?*"


Buffy and Willow looked up as Xander found them looking through dresses elsewhere in the store. He had his costume that I had found in a couple of bags -- Ethan had sold the lot to us at half price.

"Hey, Xander!," Willow greeted him. "What did you get?"

Xander pulled out a fake long knife. "Vampire hunting Vatican priest. Cool, yes?"

"Hey, look, Xander," Buffy began, "I'm... really sorry about this morning."

I decided to coast for the moment and wait until the festivities began.

"Do you mind, Buffy?," Xander snapped. "I'm trying to repress."

"Okay, then I promise, from now on I'll let you get pummeled."

Slayers sure had that reverse gender role thing going, I thought to myself.

"Thank you," Xander said, slapping on the sarcasm. "Okay, y'know, I think I could've--"

I groaned as Buffy moved towards the same damn gown. That ugly frilly red thing.

"*Damn, that's ugly,*" I said.

"I dunno, could be good once she's in it," Xander muttered to me. He continued at normal volume. "Hello! That was our touching reconcilliation moment there."

"I'm sorry," Buffy said. "It's just... look at this."

"*Could take awhile with all that fabric,*" I complained. Hey, no one ever accused me of not speaking my mind.

"It's amazing," Willow agreed.

Okay, I thought, it must be an American thing.

"Too bulky," Xander said. "I prefer my women in spandex."

The shopkeeper noticed Buffy looking at the frilly dress and came over to us.

"Please, let me," Ethan said.

"Oh, it's..."

"Magnificent, I know," Ethan murmured, as he held up the gown against Buffy's casual clothes. "My. Meet the hidden princess. I think we've found a match. Don't you?"

"Oh, I'm sorry," Buffy said as reality crashed back to earth. "There's no way I could afford this."

"Oh, nonsense," the shopkeeper said. "I feel moved to make a deal you can't refuse."


Later that day, Xander hunted out Giles' office to ask him some questions.

"Did you find any way to get this voice out of my head?"

Giles looked up from a yellowing book. "Uh, not unless we've got another body for the voice to go to."

"*I'm touched,*" I said. "*You're so fond of me, you want to get rid of me.*"

"Oh yeah. Giles, I think the voice knows something about Halloween," Xander commented.

"If the voice does know something, he'd better tell us," Giles said.

I took over Xander's mouth again. "My bloody name is Alan!"

"Your name will be dirt if you don't spill the dirt," Xander said as he took his body back.

Giles settled down on his armchair. "Alan, are there any reasons you can't, or won't, tell us?"

"Butterfly effect," I said, taking over the mouth again to speak to the librarian. "That, and what's coming will be good training for all concerned."

"Okay," Xander said. "But you still haven't told me what my costume is of."

"*A vampire and demon hunting priest,*" I said, not bothering to take the mouth again. "*Regenerating.*"

The person I formerly knew as a television character tried to get more information out of me, until I started singing Nine Inch Nails lyrics to myself. I think it was the lyrics to 'Reptile' that made him go away, finally.

Chapter 3

Xander stopped his hand as it reached for the bleach.

"Explain to me why you're going to dye my hair, again?," he asked.

"*Anderson is blonde,*" I said, "*and you're not. Besides, Buffy isn't a natural blonde.*"

"She isn't?," Xander asked, surprised.

"*Check out the roots sometime. And if you don't let me do this, I'm gonna strip this body naked while you sleep and send it running naked around town.*"

"You play dirty, Voice," Xander complained, letting the hand continue with the bleach.

"*I play to win,*" I corrected. "*In the safe knowledge you cannot retaliate.*"

"Now tell me more about this priest," Xander said. "I'm taking a lot on faith here."

"*Fair enough,*" I conceded. "*Father Anderson is part of Section Thirteen, or Iscariot. He's what some would call fanatically devoted to slaying what he sees as abominations -- vampires, ghouls, demons, the like. The good Father helps run an orphanage between missions. He can regenerate any wounds, including a bullet through the head.*"

"Okay," Xander said, "he sounds cool. Why haven't I seen whatever show this guy's off?"

"*How many Japanese cartoons do you watch?,*" I asked.

"Apart from Speed Racer?"


"Uh, none."

I washed the bleach out of his hair, and started on the designs for the gloves while it dried. Crosses on both, with 'SPEAK with DEAD' superimposed on one, and 'Jesus Christ is in HEAVEN' superimposed on the other.

"*You mean I've got an anime fanboy living in my head?," Xander asked, tones of horror colouring his voice.




"Father Anderson, here to see... Buffy! Lady of Buffdom, Duchess of Buffonia, I am in awe! I completely renounce spandex!"

I groaned. "*Xander, you're a dweeb.*"

"*Says the fanboy.*"

Buffy curtsied. We were at her house to pick up her and Willow before going to school to manage the hordes of screaming kiddies.

Personally, I thought she looked like she was fifty. Leather would have been better. Strips of leather.

"Thank you, kind sir. But wait until you see..."

Buffy trailed off as Willow appeared, clad in a bedsheet with 'BOO!' written on it.


"Casper," Buffy finished.

"Hey, Will! That's a mighty fine, ahhh... boo... you've got there."

I took over the mouth. Some things could not remain unsaid. "Does your mother know you've stolen her best linen?"

"Xander!," Buffy snapped, a frown on her face.

"Sorry, Buff, it's this voice in my head. It told me to dress up like this -- you can check with Giles. It wasn't me!"

"Suuuure it wasn't," Buffy said. "Nice joke, Xander."

"Honest. Do *I* know Hell's phone number?"


At the school, Buffy and Willow had been given their charges and left for the two hours.

Xander was still waiting. I had decided not to warn him about...

"Where's your bodyguard, Harris?," Larry asked. "Still curling her hair? I like what you did to yours. Blondie."

I took over the mouth. "The LORD trieth the righteous, but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth."

Larry looked again. We had the cross on the long necklace on, and the dogcollar. While he normally felt free to harrass Harris, the cultural conditioning to never hurt preachers was strong.

I didn't know if that would work when Xander's dad found out we'd stolen his steel rimmed glasses, though. Some things must be taken on faith.

Snyder chose then to find Xander.

"Harris! Here is the group you're to supervise. Unless it's biblical, I don't want you to say a thing to them. Bring them back in one piece, and you won't get detention."

"Was that humour from our beloved Fuhrer?," Xander asked rhetorically as the principal left.

He turned to face the group of children.

"Okay," Xander began, "on sleazing extra candy: tears are key. Tears will normally get you the double-bagger. You can also try the old 'you missed me' routine, but it's risky. Only go there for chocolate. Understood?"

I rolled my mental eyes. I figured it to be his rebellion against my direction.


Later that night, as Xander was about to take the kids back to the school, it hit.

It was nothing like I had expected. Rather than blacking out, another consciousness entered as the costume became real.

Father Anderson looked around Sunnydale, at all the abominations roaming the streets.

"Si quis non amat Dominium Iesum sit anathema marathana," the priest said, drawing his blades. "Amen!"

"*What the hell?,*" Xander asked.

"*The butterfly effect,*" I explained.

"*You have got to explain that to me one day,*" Xander muttered.

"*Listen, Father Anderson,*" I said quickly. "*These monsters are really children, under a spell. You've got to find the caster to break the spell and return them to their God given forms.*"

The blonde priest stopped.

"Who is this in my head?"

"*It's... complicated,*" I said. "*Go up three blocks, one to the left, then enter Ethan's Costume Shoppe. There, you'll find the pagan worshipper who did this. Ethan worships Janus.*"

Anderson didn't like harming children. He especially didn't like those who tried to harm children. He really didn't like pagans who tried to harm children.

Chapter 4

The Paladin kicked the door in, storming through to the back room.

Xander... well, he was kinda in shock. I was cheering the good Father on.

"We are the ministers of God," Paladin Anderson said, producing two long blades that had been blessed, and dipped in holy water. "In flaming fire we take vengeance on them that know not God, and obey not the Catholic gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ; who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power - this honour have all his saints. Amen!"

Ethan Rayne looked up. He was in a black robe, with blood painted across his face. Lit candles were placed around the room, with a two faced statue in the center.

"Beautiful night tonight, no?," the Paladin asked. "Abomination."

"Who do you think you are?," Rayne asked. "This is beautiful, the embodiment of 'be careful what you ask for'."

"*Get him to turn the children back,*" I reminded the priest.

Father Anderson threw the two blades at Rayne, pinning him to the wall of the small room by his hands. He produced two more blades from under his coat, then moved over to the pagan.

"I want to enjoy this," Anderson said. "But I can't wait, because the childrens' souls suffer."

He blew out all the candles, turning on the electric light.

"Ma-maybe we can come to some arrangement?," Ethan asked, hoping to get out of this alive.

"The Vatican has no money to give to pagans and heretics," Father Anderson said.

He systematically began ripping down all the wall hangings, throwing them into the center of the room. Next was the plaster bust with two faces. He picked it up, and threw it hard onto the ground, shattering it.

And then Paladin Alexander Anderson disappeared, leaving only myself and Xander. Ethan Rayne found the blades that went through his hands and into the wall were now plastic.

Xander looked around. "That was not fun."

"*I enjoyed it,*" I said. "*And we got some skills from it.*"

Xander made a face. "*I could have lived without having perfect recall of the scriptures, hundreds of hymns, and thousands of essays, Voice."

"*The knives, Xander,*" I said. "*You now know how to fight the darkness.*"

"I guess," Xander said. "Now, to tie up... hey! Where'd he go?"

Ethan Rayne had managed to make himself scarce, leaving only a pair of plastic blades impaled in the wall with blood dripping from them.


When we caught up with the others, we found that their evening, while exciting, had been very lacking in blood and terror. Father Anderson's intervention had occured soon enough that Buffy, Willow and the rest had reverted to themselves while still in the 'run screaming' phase.

We were all in the Library, having rounded up the kids and delivered them back to their parents.

"Ah, Xander, I believe it would be best if you were to explain about the Voice to the others," Giles said.

"Voice?," Willow asked.

"There's a voice in my head," Xander said. "He warned me to expect the worst tonight, and suggested my costume as this priest."

Buffy looked over Xander. "Doesn't look intimidating."

I took over the body, drawing the two plastic blades. I jumped up from the seat, standing side on to the Slayer, blades directed at her.

"Grace be with you all, amen," I said.

"Okay, it's got that creep factor," Willow said. "Especially with the fake blood on those big knives."

Xander took the body back. "That's real, Will. Paladin Alexander Anderson really doesn't like pagans, and hates people who hurt children even more. Ethan Rayne is now sadder, wiser, and a few pints of blood short."

Giles' head shot up. "Ethan Rayne? Ethan was behind this?"

"Yeah," Xander said, looking at the blade in his left hand. "The costumes changed into reality when he did his little spell."

"Is... is he still alive?," Willow asked.

"Yeah," Xander confirmed. "Father Anderson pinned him to the wall by his hands, and he escaped when the blades turned back to plastic."

"Gruesome," Buffy said. "Can we talk to the voice now?"

"My name is Alan," I complained as I took control. "Surely even you can remember that."

"Fine, Alan, whatever. How do we get you out of Xander?"

Giles opened a book he'd had ready. "I've got, um, a spell to shift him to another body, but we need a soulless body for it to work."

"And if you think I'm going vampire, you can think again," I said. "About tonight, I should have probably got you and Willow to dress up as Takagi Yumiko and Heinkel."

Giles thought out loud. "Father Anderson... Yumiko... Heinkel... this would be the Hellsing manga from Japan?"

I looked surprised. "You read manga?"

Giles readjusted his glasses' placement. "A friend in college read them. I merely looked for nothing better to do. Ah, I feel that Yumie and Heinkel would be a very bad idea, given the average American's religious affiliations, or lack thereof."


Chapter 5

I frowned at Giles mentally. "*I think it would be a great idea. Homicidal fanatics with huge swords always go down well with the neighbours. Hehehehehe...*"

Xander grimaced. "Giles, please tell me you've got some place to stash this voice. I don't know how much of his laughing I can take."

"Awwww... has Xander met his match?," Willow teased.

"*Please demonstrate,*" Xander asked me.

I'm always willing to foster an image of insanity in myself. I took over Xander's body again, and laughed in the great tradition of Iori Yagami, Kodachi Kuno, and Naga the White Serpent.


Buffy winced. "Okay, now I really want to Slay the voice."

"Well," Giles thought out loud, "we could dig up a corpse, and--"

"No!," Willow said. "Uh, no. I really don't think that would be a good idea, mucking about with dead people further than vampires, which we lay to rest anyway, and--"

"Okay, Will, we get the idea," Xander said. "As much as I want to agree with you."

The door then opened. A figure lurched through.

"Me!," I said, taking over the mouth again.

Well, with imagination it was me.


Okay, maybe I didn't have any muscles to speak of originally, but it /kind of/ looked like me.

The demon marks were completely new, denoting the body's connection to Daimakaicho Hild, and Hell.

"Good!," Giles said. "Willow, if you could..."

Willow did something stinky that I didn't understand with some herbs and weird chanting, and confirmed that the body was soulless.

The telephone rang, just to break the moment.

"Uh, hello?," Giles asked. "Rupert Giles speaking."

"G-g-good evening," he said after a moment.

"O-of course. No, of course not! Uh, immediately."

He looked at the phone after that. "Hmmm. Dead."

"*Hild must not like him,*" I said.

All this ignoring by Xander was starting to get me down. Oh, well. Perhaps I'd get the chance to screw around with them better after this.

"So, who was that?," Buffy asked.

"The, uh, ruler of Hell," Giles said. "I-I-I really don't like speaking to her."

"Her?," Willow asked.

"She had a kid with God, once," I said, taking over Xander's mouth again.


This came from everyone minus me. Yeesh. You'd think I just announced God had sex with the Devil. Oh, wait, I did.

"Tell me more, now," Giles commanded me.

"What am I, a radio?," Xander complained.

"Yes," I said. "I'm only gonna tell you more if or when I get into that body Hild sent me. I bet that's the message she had, yeah?"

"Uh, yes," Giles confirmed. "Very well, but first..."

He produced some cast iron restrains from under his bed, while Xander took over the body very forcefully.

"*I'm human, not a fairy,*" I complained. "*Cast iron doesn't burn me, or anything.*"

Yes, the body sent was a demon's. But it was going to be mine. Once I got a body of my own, I was gonna go get laid -- without worrying if Xander was looking over my shoulder. (Or worse, from my shoulder.)

And they didn't know the body was demonic. It didn't look weird, and no energy was powering it. Giles looked like he suspected something, but I don't think he actually knew anything.

Sadly, no one responded to my comments, since Xander was not repeating them after that bombshell I told them. They clamped the cast iron manacles and leg irons on the body, then Giles looked through his book.

"Right, uh, transferral, transferral, where is it?"

Jeez. Does every British guy have some manta along the lines of "Matches, matches, matches..." as he searches for something?

Xander crouched, looking at the body which was currently on the floor of Giles' little apartment.

"Looks like someone in a coma," he commented.

"Xander, don't," Willow began.

Xander poked the figure.

"Don't touch it," Willow finished.

"Uh, I just did," Xander said. "Did I do something wrong?"

Giles looked up from his book. "That depends on whether the body was prepared or not. Is the voice still in your head?"

Xander paused, listening intently. "It could be gone. It isn't saying anything if it is."

"Coma guy on the floor is moving," Buffy said. She'd gotten a wooden spoon that she was poking it with.

What am I, a pincushion? I opened my eyes, lest someone else tried poking me.

"I want a drink," I announced. "I think I'm knurd."

"You've read that book?," Willow asked. "We don't have any of Jimkin Beerhugger's Finest here, sorry."

"Aged for up to Five Minutes," I muttered.

I sat up, finding the manacles to be flimsy and easy to snap. So I snapped them.

"Nice bracelets," I commented cheerily.

"Those... those were forged iron!," Giles complained. "Buffy could not have broken those?"

The aforementioned Slayer was now pale, and shaking. "Guys, can you not feel the wrongness coming off him?"

"Now that you mention it," Xander said. "What's with stinky voice?"

I frowned, flicking through my various pseudononyms used in various places. "That's Mercva to you, Mr LaVelle."

Xander paled. "How do you know the name?!"

"I know all," I stated proudly.

"Can you tone down the bad aura-ness?," Giles asked. "It's upsetting Buffy."

"Sorry," I said. "I'll see what I can do."


On the other side of town, in Willy's Alibi, all the demons looked up.

"Can you feel that?," one of them asked.

"Who can't?," another snorted.

"Why would one of them be here?"