Author: Nodakskip <nodakskip[at]>

Beta Read: by Theo (And also a lot of help fleshing it all out.)

Author's Notes: This is an AU. No Willow/Xander fluking. The rest should be explained within the fic. <> means thoughts, // means mental communication. And I would also like to thank Tenhawk and the various Wandererverse author's whose ideas I borrowed.

Rating: PG-ish

Disclaimer: Don't own 'em, and never did. Everything Buffy-ish belongs to Joss and Mutant Enemy, anything Trek belongs to Gene Roddenberry, and all Highlander is owned by Rysher Entertainment.

Category: A BTVS/Highlander/Star Trek crossover.

Summary: Cordelia Chase is destined to become an Immortal. But this is just the beginning of her story.

Year 2381

The woman now known as Cordelia Giles let a soft moan escape her lips, as the masseuse worked his magic on her smooth, naked body. She was into hour three of the little birthday present she'd granted to herself.

A small trip to the most lavish spa, on the entire planet of Betazed.

Cordelia had come here only one other time, ever since her move to this world - which had become her home - ten years ago. She rarely pampered herself like this anymore, but today was special. It was her birthday, after all.

The big 400.

As the masseuse started to work on her leg muscles, Cordelia let her mind drift back to a time when she was way too young, an era when she'd thought you had one foot in the grave by the age of 25.

The human woman thought back to her old stomping grounds, on Earth. Well, her first home on Earth, anyway. Sunnydale, in the state of southern California.

The town itself was long since vanished now, and had been nothing but a canyon for hundreds of years. That giant crater was all that was left of it - that, and her memories.


Sunnydale, California. April, 1998

Rupert Giles closed the door to his private office in the Sunnydale High library, after his old friend Adam Pierson came into the room. "Must you leave so soon?" the Watcher asked somewhat sadly.

Adam Pierson, also known to a few as Methos the oldest living Immortal, nodded as he leaned against the wall. "I'm afraid so, old chap. It was just fun to get away from the Watcher Archives for a bit. You know how it is..."

Rupert Giles then looked him as if he was crazy. "Fun? We, we just barely stopped a pair of Chaos demons from destroying the world, not to mention their army of at least 40 vampires. And you call that fun?"

His friend just smirked, as he nodded. "It's been too long, since I got a workout like that. Face it, Ripper, it beats cataloging musty old books any day! But next time you need help - please, I'm begging you here. Get a few imported beers, okay? If I have to drink that swill you call alcohol in this country again, I'll almost regret saving your ass when you were twenty..."

At Giles' look, the oldest Immortal shrugged. "Oh alright, fine, you could have stopped those demons back then by yourself eventually. But it never hurts to have friends 'n all, Ripper."

He looked past Giles, out though the office window to see the teenagers sitting at the main table. "You know, when I heard you had civilians helping the Slayer, I must admit - I was a little worried, but your Slayerettes acquitted themselves very well these last few days. You should be proud of them."

"I am," Giles told him, the sincerity in his voice obvious as he looked at the kids he had procreated in spirit, if not in body.

But Adam's face then grew sterner, as he watched the dark-haired couple in the main section of the school's library.

The very attractive brunette female clad in designer clothes was laughing, as she tried to fend off her boyfriend's attempts to tickle her. The Immortal shook his head slightly, as he realized what the boy was trying to do.

Adam almost instantly figured out that the areas that the young man was aiming for, were actually more the areas for wanting to cop a feel. And to his slight surprise the girl, while still laughing her head off at him, was repositioning her upper body to let the boy tickle some very choice targets.

"Ah, young lust..." Pierson remarked fondly, before turning to Giles. "Rupert, look, I know you're as trustworthy as they come these days. But, ah, what I'm about to tell you must be kept confidential. From all of your young charges."

"Of course," the British man said slowly. "What is it?"

"There's a future Immortal sitting at that table."

Giles' jaw went slack, as the news hit his brain. After he recovered somewhat the British man stammered, "A-a-are you sure?"

Adam just raised an eyebrow at him.

"Oh, oh yes, of course you'd be sure," Giles said, shaking his head at his stupid remark. "Well, uh, that explains some things. I, I always wondered about how the boy's parents could be so different to Xander's a foundling, a pre-Immortal. I wonder…"

Adam shook his head. "Ah, Rupert? I'm not talking about young Mr. Harris. The pre-Immie I'm referring to is right now reaching past him, and giving him a great look at her cleavage."

"Cordelia?!" Giles belatedly tried to keep his voice low, so as not to get overheard by the kids close by. "You're telling me that Cordelia Chase, the head cheerleader of this blasted school, is going to be a bloody Immortal one day?!"

"Yep. And come on, what's wrong with her being a cheerleader? I mean as I understand it, your Slayer was one in Los Angeles back in the day, and she's kicking demon arse now."

Giles was still trying to digest the information, and looked down at his shoes. "Well, yes, but…Cordelia? Oh dear Lord, but this is unexpected. I, I need a cup of tea..."

"Just breathe there, G-man," Adam joked.

And when Giles' head snapped back up, the Immortal man threw up his hands. "Sorry old boy, but I just had to try it at least once. Your young friends got me hooked on the term..."

The ancient man turned back to watch the girl leading her boyfriend by the hand, to disappear into the stacks. "Well, my money says we won't see them again for a few hours..."

Adam looked back to his friend. "Look, man, I'm telling you this so if something does happen, your Slayer doesn't try to stake her or something like that when she dies her First Death and gets resurrected later. As I recall, it hurts a lot..."

He then shrugged, "And you have to admit, the odds are she won't have a long mortal lifespan living in this town. Just call me when it happens. I don't think many Immortals will come near the Hellmouth anytime soon, as it even gives me the creeps. But, I'd rather be safe than sorry..."


Year 2381

It eventually came to pass that Cordelia Chase was told about the little chat between Giles and Methos, as Adam Pierson was otherwise known, soon after Graduation.


<God, but that day really sucked. The only good thing about it all, was my pre-dawn sex-a-thon with Xander! We were sure we were going to die, anyway…so we might as well die with a smile on our faces.>

Then Cordy sighed. <What the hell, one of us did die that day...>

The memories of her First Death often played out in Cordelia's mind. Seeing that vampire grabbing the battle-axe from Jonathon Levinson, and then throwing it straight towards the back of the teenager that was leading the army of students.

Her boyfriend, Alexander Harris.

Cordelia didn't even remember jumping towards him. One second she'd seen the axe let fly, the next she was shoving Xander to the ground as it hit her in the back.

Xander's scream and the look in his eyes as he held her as she died, were then forever imprinted onto her mind. Even if Cordy lived to be 5000 years old like someone who would remain forever unmentioned, she would always remember those moments as death claimed her.

And then, spit her back out.

Cordelia had awoken later, lying on the grass near where she had fallen with a coat over head. She'd looked around in confusion, as she saw the old tower on the school grounds blow apart. The other explosions from the school itself had come in rapid succession, after that.

And then, the fight had been over.

The newborn Immortal had then staggered off in search of her extended family. There had then followed a few "What the hell's?" and a "Good God!" from Wesley…and Xander's fainting.

Plus, Giles stopping Buffy from staking her. Then they'd all gotten the full story later, at Giles' condo...


Sunnydale, California. May, 1999

"So, lemme get this straight," Cordelia said, as she looked back to the man she hadn't seen in almost a year. "I'm now an immortal super-chick of some kind, and you want to take me to your friend's place in some crap-hole called Seacouver, to train me to play with swords?"

Methos nodded to her, from his place on the concrete stairs. "You have to train and get yourself ready, or else the first Immortal you encounter now is going to chop off your head..."

He looked around at the place they were in. "And for heaven's sake, can we not talk about this in the middle of Ripper's apartment? Any idiot with his window open might hear us!"

Cordelia waived this off. "Oh please, we've had tons of private conversations like this before and no one ever hears anything. You mention anything supernatural in this town, and most of the townsfolk go instantly deaf. Talk about repressing..."

She then turned to face the Immortal. "Fine, I'll go with you to this Duncan's place, but only under one condition."

"And what's that?" he asked.

"Xander comes with us."

Methos had been kind of expecting this. "Ah, well, that's not a good idea. He's not…" the oldest man in the world stopped, as he saw the fire in her eyes.

"Xander's coming with us!" Cordelia seethed. "Look pal, you want me to fly away with you to some place where the climate is going to be murder on my hair, not to mention stay with three strange men…"

She stopped to collect herself. "Well, Dweeb Boy comes along or I don't go, end of discussion."

Adam looked at Xander, who was lounging against the bureau drawer. "Why don't we ask the man in question what he wants to do?"

The teenager straightened up, and looked Methos right in the eye. Then he turned around to stare at Buffy, Willow, Oz, Angel and Giles.

The two girls felt their stomachs heaving and then turning inside out, as they understood then what their Xander-shaped friend was about to do.

Xander said quietly, practically daring Methos to argue, "You think for one minute I'm just gonna leave Cordy alone, with some self-confessed murderers that now have a reason to kill her?"

At the older man's look and upcoming protest, the boy went on, "Yeah, yeah, I know what you said - it's just self-defense, part of this stupid Game. But Cordelia's gonna need someone there that's on her side, pal, and who she knows isn't going to decapitate her. So you try taking my girl without me, and one day you'll end up about a head shorter after I put six bullets into your heart - I can promise ya that much."

At the glitter in the young man's eyes, Methos just nodded. He hadn't lived for 5000 years, without knowing a sincere death threat when he heard one. "Fine. Then I suggest you both make your arrangements, to leave town as soon as possible..."


A week later, Cordelia and Xander were on a private jet heading for their new home. And although the situation started out a little rocky, soon everything settled down at the place where they would be spending the next few years.

Cordelia started training in a dojo with the Immortals named Duncan and Methos, and on occasion even the one called Amanda…who had the worst hairdo ever, in her opinion!

Xander and another Immortal called Richie Ryan hit it off fairly well, too. They often had long conversations about motor bikes and women, over drinks at the place called "Le Blues Bar". Dweeb Boy even got fairly good at the swordplay himself, for a mortal...

But then of course he'd had to, since the young couple had decided to settle all their arguments that way. The other Immortals quickly realized that if you couldn't find Xander and Cordelia anywhere, they were either sword fighting or making out in a closet somewhere...

After one heavy make-out session that had ended up with them in the bedroom (Immortality - the ultimate safe sex) Xander Harris and Cordelia Chase decided to get married.

Methos tried to talk her out of it, "Cordelia, I've been married 68 times. And believe it or not, I know it'll end up in heartbreak for you..."

The brunette looked exasperated. "Oh, come on old timer, what would you know?"

The oldest Immortal looked away, the remark stinging a little. "A few years ago, there was this woman called Alexa...well, I won't bore you with the details, but she was dying. I tried to find something called the Methuselah Stone, to imbue her with immortality so we could remain together..."

His student looked very excited for a moment, as the prospect of having Xander at her side without the fear of his death was intoxicating. "Well, what happened? Did you find it?"

"Yes," Methos again looked away. "But it's lost forever now, somewhere in France..."

Ignoring her disappointment, he went on, "The point of the story is this; we had our time together, but eventually I lost her. And if I hadn't had the experience to cope with it, I might have gone insane from the grief! Immortal or not, you're still just a child, a teenager. Wait a few more years - something like this..."

"…is exactly what I need," the Chase woman said with a look of contempt. "You said it, pal; we're immortal. Xander isn't. I'm gonna lose him one day, I know that even if I can't accept it. But if you think that means I won't cherish every moment we can have together, you're nuts!"

Adam tried to say something, but she went on, "Living like that, not doing something you want to do just to protect yourself from future pain - that isn't living! And if you haven't figured something that simple out by now, then I'm real sorry for you..." Cordelia then left the room.

Methos started swearing in many different languages - ancient Egyptian, Sumerian, Latin, the works. "Ungrateful little snot-nose..."

And so, four days later a friend of Duncan's married the former Sunnydale odd couple. Then came the honeymoon …oh dear God, she still had some great memories about those 15 days. <Who'd have thought that Xander could have learned to become so…limber?>

Afterwards life had gone on, and they hadn't returned to Sunnydale for two years. Eventually the Immortal and her husband returned there, just in time to help with some hellgod named Glory. <And God knows she was a complete skank!>

Cordelia had covered Xander, as he'd gone up a tower built by crazy people to untie Buffy's sister, Dawn. But other than a few toad-like demons and having to kill some weird guy Spike had called Doc, they'd made it out intact.

Of course, there was that thing where Giles had committed murder - but when they heard the full story later from Dawn, nobody regretted it for more than a fleeting instant.

Xander and Cordelia later bought a small house, with the money Methos gave her to start a new life. The young man got a job with a construction company, as he had always been destined to do, and for a while at least...their lives were almost normal.

Of course, the married couple later wished they'd been able to afford something larger when they had a dozen teenage girls staying there, during all that crap with the First Evil. Mike, their 40-something neighbor, had thought Xander had started his own harem or something...

But as Cordelia had told him, "Why would Xander waste his time with little girls, when he gets me every night?"


New York, New York. New Year's Eve, 2025

Thousands had come to see the ball drop in Times Square. But two people were far too busy to watch the stupid ball travel around, of all things.

Had anyone been able to see through the magic spell that fully cloaked them, they would have seen Xander and Cordelia Harris finishing making love on a rooftop, as the ball dropped.

As the crowd below yelled and blew into their noisemakers, Cordelia winked at her husband. "I think you just impressed them, dorkhead," she told the man above her, as she panted a little.

Xander just gave her a quick kiss, "Nah, it had to be you that wowed 'em, lover."

Cordy giggled, "Yeah, you're absolutely right, it had to be me. So, does this beat your little Buffy and Willow fantasy?"

The man in question gave the woman that still looked 18 years old one of his lopsided grins, one that still made her heart melt whenever she saw it. "Ohhhh, yeah. But you have to admit, finding out about them getting it on after Kennedy left was just a little too weird."

"Well, I never liked that girl anyway. She was no Tara, " the Immortal told him, as she ran her fingers through his now-long hair.

The 44-year-old Xander Harris looked down at the huge crowd below. "You know, when Richie asked me a few months ago what we were doing for New Year's...I'd have never guessed this! Your ideas are getting more and more wild every year, Cordy."

"Hey, my time with you is going to have to last me a lifetime, after you…" she couldn't finish it.

"I know, Cordy, I know..." the mortal said sadly, as he stroked her face.

"Xander, when I look back on us down the road a century or so, I don't want to think of ANYTHING left that we never did!"

Cordelia wrapped her arms around his neck, and pulled the middle-aged guy down so his ear was right next to her mouth. "Now, we still have an easy 90 minutes left until the spell wears off. So what are we doing talking, mister?"

"As you wish, dear..." Xander responded with a wicked grin - as moments later, Cordelia got back to the moaning and screaming.


Year 2381

It was a fact that her time with her mortal husband, and all the others alongside him, were more precious to Cordelia now than the rarest of jewels. For the first lifetime was always the worst, as Methos had warned her; it was the time that became your anchor, years and centuries down the road.

It was what was imprinted within you, and the basis of what sort of Immortal you would later become.

Cordelia often felt like she was honoring the people she'd known by taking their names, whenever she'd had to assume a new identity. <What the hell - Giles himself said he saw us all as his kids anyway,> the still 18-year-old-looking brunette woman thought, as she got dressed in the changing room.

She flipped through the selections on the replicator listlessly. Having machines that could instantly replicate clothes - any clothes - to your exact measurements just took out all the fun of shopping, in her opinion.

Cordy finally stopped, at a black ensemble. <I think I'd look very good in that.>

//Of course you would,// a deep voice sounded instantly in her head. //Black always looked good on you.//

She turned to the long sword in its sheath, leaning against the chair. "And how would you know? All you ever cared about was just ripping my clothes off of me, as soon as was humanly possible!"

//Oh yeah, you got a point there. I remember our 50th wedding anniversary,// Xander's amused voice whispered in her head.

Sometimes, not often but sometimes, the fact that the soul of Xander Harris - her late mortal husband, of 69 years - was now within her sword and able to communicate with her like this, made Cordelia want to burst into tears.

But then she remembered how after Willow's daughters' coven had contacted her, after Xander had been injured, it had seemed too good to be true.

A way for the mortal to be with her forever, or for as long as she lived anyway.

Time had finally taken its toll, and Xander's body had begun failing; it was only a matter of months, maybe even weeks before they would lose him.

Buffy of course had hit the roof, when she'd been told about what Cordelia had in mind. And even the now-human Angel was shocked, at what his old friends were planning to do.

Cordy simply said though, that she and Xander had discussed it for years. And if there was any non-evil way that they could get his lifespan magically or technologically extended, they would consider trying it.

However, anti-senescence technology was still in its infancy; and with most of the old Council's files and spells dating back thousands of years destroyed, all the leads they found did not seem promising at all.

It was an academic point with regards to the Watchers - even after all this time, they were still rebuilding, after the massacre inflicted by that thrice-damned minion of evil called Caleb.

Then came the demon attack while they were in England, visiting Giles' grave. It had left Xander with barely enough strength, just to breathe on his own. Then a few days later, with Willow, Buffy, Angel and everyone else they'd known that was still alive in the room, Cordelia had told the man about the spell.

And not only had the ritual later bound his soul to her sword - one she had later engraved with the image of a hyena, that had had Xander silently laughing for hours - it had bound both of their souls together.

The plan was that when she died, really finally died her Final Death, Xander's soul would be freed. And then, they would end their journey together.

Cordy had spent a few days, picking out the proper sword. Because not just any sword would be good enough for her husband's resting place!

Xander had picked the one he'd liked the best, out of a choice of four. But of course he also wanted her to be happy with it; the mortal knew very well what could happen, if an Immortal didn't feel right about her weapon of choice. After all, it was part of her, and would be the only thing standing between life and death for his wife after he was gone.

The night before the casting of the spell, Cordelia had stayed by her husband's bedside the entire night, just being with him. If anything went wrong, she'd wanted his face, his hands, his eyes, his voice committed to memory. And a few last kisses didn't hurt, either.

At the first rays of dawn they'd placed Xander inside the sacred circle, along with Cordelia, the sword and a receptacle of sorts. And after an hour of chanting and everything short of animal sacrifices, the white witches were done.

A pearly-white mist was released into a muo-ping; and once the glass container was shattered, Xander's soul was instantly sucked into the bladed weapon.

Willow instantly broke down in tears, when she'd felt no pulse in her best friend's body. But then came the true test...

To this day over 300 years later, Cordelia still could not fully explain or express in words the pure love and joy she'd felt, when she first picked up the sword after the ceremony was done.

Because Xander was in there. His essence, his memories, everything that had made him him was right there, held in her hands. It was like submerging herself in pure joy, and she had never in her very long life felt more at peace than she did then.

The Immortal woman could not only feel her mate, but she could hear him too. His voice in her head became the most beautiful sound she had ever heard.

The female warrior could always hear Xander if he `spoke', as long as the sword was within a radius of 30 or so feet from her. Also, the coven had added a few extra features to Xander's new `body'. For one, it seemed that only Cordelia or someone Xander considered a friend could wield him in battle; any enemy would feel like a thousand knives were carving him to pieces.

For another, they increased the blade strength way beyond what it had been before, making it virtually unbreakable. And just in case, they added a few protection spells for the sword, as well as Cordelia.

The biggest addition was the fact that Xander could appear in Cordelia's hand, when she mentally called him. The Immortal was told that it was Willow's personal addition to the spells; it was her way of making sure Xander never get lost, or would ever be left behind somewhere.

Yeah, right. As if Cordelia would ever forget him.


An hour later, Cordy was walking down the street of the medium-sized city that currently her home.

Both she and Xander were still in awe of the beauty of Betazed. The entire planet was right out of an old-style human post card; all around them was lush vegetation, crystal-clear oceans, and thick forests. Hell, there was even a huge waterfall less then three miles from her backyard!

And the people! Xander had laughingly dubbed them "a planet of Cordelia's". Since the entire race was naturally telepathic, they always told the truth. What was the point of lying to anyone, when they could read your thoughts? Even if it was both a crime and social stigma, to read someone without their permission...

The thing was though, they couldn't read Cordelia. Like with the alien capitalist species called the Ferengi, for some reason Betazoids couldn't fully see into the minds of Immortals. And when ever Richie, Methos or Jennifer (a former student of Cordelia's) came to visit, the Betazoids couldn't read them either.

No one knew why, and the thought of heading over to the local university to run tests to determine the reason was the last thing on their minds.

Cordelia suddenly saw the transport sitting outside her home, and got excited. <It could work this time, Xander!>

However, the response was very low-key. //Ah, I wouldn't get your hopes up if I were you, Cordy.//

<Oh, be quiet Mr. Negativity! I've paid that little Ferengi troll way too much latinum, as it is. It had better work, or I'll pull his ears off!>

//Well, I guess we're about to find out,// the voice of her late husband sighed, as they entered the large home.

They were greeted by the sight of the Ferengi in question arguing with Aszel, Cordy's Betazoid assistant. Aszel's face showed great relief when Cordy came in, "Miss Giles, welcome home."

"Thank you, Aszel," Cordy said simply, as she hung up her coat.

The Immortal noticed with satisfaction that Freung, the Ferengi, paled when he saw Xander hanging from her hip. "Are you causing problems for my assistant again, Freung?" she demanded.

The troll-like alien looked at her smugly. "I was just telling her how you would both enjoy a trip to Ferenginar..." he said slowly, as his eyes inspected all of Cordelia's curves.

"Yes," Aszel's said, disgusted. "And once again, I'm reminded of why I'm glad I can't read Ferengis." The assistant tipped her head towards the human woman, before she went to another part of the house.

"Thanks for the offer of the little side trip," the 400-year-old warrior told the still-grinning alien. "But the `no clothes for females' thing just doesn't agree with me."

"You don't understand, Ms. Giles," the little toad smiled a toothy, lusty smile at her. "The Grand Nagus repealed that law, ages ago. Besides, nudity isn't a problem here on Betazed! I'm sure we could find many enjoyable things to do there..."

Cordelia knew exactly what was on the mind of the Ferengi, as she leaned down to be right into his face. "Trust me on this, pal. You. Couldn't. Handle. Me," she said in a very deadly voice. "Now, is the damn device installed and working properly? I'd hate for you to make me disappointed again. I could get...violent."

The 4' 6 alien nodded quickly, taking several steps back. "It will work this time for sure, Ms. Giles. The Bynars have assured me that the system will work, just as you requested."

Freung leaned in, "You know, it's a very unusual system you've got set up here. I can't help wondering, what's it for? You've got an awful lot of computer memory, almost as much as a starship would have..."

Cordelia gave him a cold look. "You don't need to know what it's for. If it works, then you'll get the final payment in your account by this time tomorrow. If it doesn't work…" she let the threat linger in the air a bit, before she continued.

"Don't you have an elsewhere to be? There are lots of women in this city alone, that I'm sure haven't slapped you yet..." Her hand slowly went for Xander's handle.

The Ferengi gulped once, as he bolted out the door.

Cordy laughed as she watched him leave and heard Xander's voice say, //I'm telling you, he's got to be Snyder's great-great-great-grandson or something!//

<Maybe,> Cordelia thought back to him, with a mental smile. <But that in turn would imply that Snyder actually found a woman with standards low enough...>

Aszel came back in, with her coat on. "Goodbye Ms. Giles, and good luck to you. I hope this works for you."

Cordelia smiled. "That makes three of us. Have a good evening, Aszel."

After her assistant left Cordelia locked the house up, turned off all the lights and set her communications equipment to message mode.

She didn't want any interruptions, if this worked.

After a short walk down the steps to her basement, the Immortal came to the large metal doors. She took a deep breath, and opened them.

The woman walked into the room that, had she seen it when she was still a pre-Immortal centuries ago, would have gotten her very confused. But here and now, Cordelia knew perfectly well what the black wall and yellow grids were.

A holosuite.

Something that had had Cordelia making plans, as soon as she'd heard of the concept about a hundred years ago. The ability to create any environment, any setting and items - and make it seem real.

You wanted to go camping under the stars in a national park, become the main character in your favorite entertainment program, or take a space walk without a spacesuit? It could all happen, within these chambers.

They might just be a hologram, nothing more than light trapped inside a force field - but that didn't matter to her. What mattered was the computer's ability to take the image of a person, and put him or her in the simulation.

Cordelia had programmed in the person's image that she'd wanted, over two years ago. Right down to the voice taken from old home movies, from her very private collection.

And the holosuite had taken her breath away at first, but she'd quickly lost patience with the shortcomings inherent in its very nature. A hologram looked real, and could even feel real, but it lacked substance.

It lacked...a soul.

But now, if all the merging of mystical and technological science had worked, that problem might have finally been corrected.

Tapping a button on the archway panel, a long drawer ejected. She took out Xander from his sheath and asked, "Are you ready to try it, honey?"

//You know I am, Cor.//

She gently placed him in the drawer full of light, and hit the button again. The drawer soundlessly slid back into the wall, and three rows of red lights turned green.

"Here goes nothing," Cordelia whispered to herself. "Computer. Run program Xander 2, with the info from the external input source."

A full minute later, the hologram of a man appeared in front of her. The hologram of an 18-year-old Alexander Lavelle Harris.

He didn't move for a moment, then his eyes opened as he sucked in a breath. He didn't need to breathe, because his body wasn't real, but it sure seemed like he was really there and doing it.

Brown eyes locked onto her hazel ones. "Cordy?"

This was as far as they had ever gotten, in the last four tries in the past two years. Now though, came the moment of truth.

"Xander, what's the password phrase we agreed on?" she asked with unbridled hope.

He gave her a lopsided grin. "Xander, those shoes do not go with that shirt!"

Tears instantly fell from Cordelia's eyes.

It had finally worked. All rational thoughts were subsequently lost to her, as she ran into her husband's arms for the first time in over 300 years.

"It worked!! It worked!! Oh thank you, God!!" Cordelia screamed, as the young-looking couple embraced and kissed.

The hologrammatic Xander looked around in astonishment, a few minutes later. "This feels even weirder than when I was possessed by that darn hyena, way back when..."

Through her tears, Cordelia slapped him playfully. "You jerk! It finally worked, and that's all you can think about?"

"Well, no," the human simulacrum shrugged. "This 18-year-old body you've given me, I'm also thinking about us doing it right here and now! Okay, I'm also thinking I wish I could take you outside for us to watch the sunset, like we did on the last night of our honeymoon, but hey - hologram here..."

Cody stepped back, with a wide grin. "Not a problem..." She then took out something from underneath her clothes, that made Xander's eyes go wide.

"Is that..."

Cordelia smiled, as she pinned the device to his god-awful Hawaiian shirt. "Mobile emitter technology, from what was brought back by USS Voyager. Duncan knows a few Starfleet types in high places..."

The dazed hologram and the ancient Immortal then stepped out of the holosuite, and walked through the house out onto the soil of Betazed. Just in time to watch the sunset, and begin a whole new life together.

The End