Something Wicked This Way Comes

Author: MagnusXXN <MagnusXXN[at]>

Sunnydale, one day before Halloween.

"Put that away."

The storeowner said with a hint of disgust. With a shrug Xander put the toy gun back on the shelf. "Hey, I can't really afford much more then that." The dark-haired teen told him.

Ethan smiled, or smirked was more like it. He didn't seem like the type that smiled very often. "I think I have something that you would like much more."

Having no other choice the teen followed the smirking brit into the back of the store. Which is where all the expensive outfits were being held. "I told you, I can't afford one of these."

He didn't like having to repeat it. It made him feel.... well poor. Which he wasn't. It's just that his dear old man didn't think monster costumes were the best way for money to be spent.

The teen couldn't help but sneer inwardly at the thought of his father. No matter how he tried to make him proud, no matter what he did or said, it just was never enough.

It would be easier if his father was just abusive or hated him, but that wasn't the case. Mr. Harris just didn't give a damn one way or another when it came to his only son.

The storekeeper brought him out of his brooding, "Think of this as a gift then. I had been expecting someone to pick it up, but with Halloween tomorrow it seems no one will. So you take it."

Xander couldn't help but give the storeowner an untrusting stare, but then he turned to the costume. It was more then he'd expected.

At first he thought it was a suit of armor for a night, but upon closer inspection he just couldn't place where it came from. Ethan saw that and answered, "This suit was created for a man only a few years ago. He changed his mind and went with something a little more.... dark."

Once again his smirk was in place. The armor the man, who had placed the order, had gone with a design of dark metal, with shades of black and gray. Of course, the brit had been the one to create it for him.


Ethan knew it wouldn't fit Eric, but he'd already had this spell in thought. And he couldn't think of anything better then changing this young man before him into Eric Lehnsherr.

"What was he? Some sort of knight?" The teen wondered aloud.

"A king, of sorts. Think of him as the last king the world will ever know." That was all he needed to sell Xander on the idea. "I'll take it."

"Here, let me help you." It didn't take long to get the armor on the teen. First he got rid of the clothes the boy had walked in his store with. Then came the boots, which looked very much like combat boots. Followed up with the black leather pants, a dark gray dress shirt which went underneath the gray chest plate. And ended with the helmet.

Xander turned to look into the full-length mirror in the corner, "Wow." It was a perfect mix of old and new styles, of a present day soldier, and a king of long past.

The chaos mage's mouth was pretty much watering at the thought of what would happen tonight. The world barely knew of mutants, the governments might know of them, but only a handful of the population had any idea.

The other costumes were just flutter, monsters, and a few heroes, all of which would fight and die tonight but by dawn they'd be back to normal. But not this young man, oh no.

It wasn't magic that would be powering this young man; it would be genetics.

As he watched the young man leave Ethan couldn't help but chuckle. This would be his masterpiece. Changing the very nature of this child. For he the spell would change his geno forever. Xander would be a mutant not just for tonight, but forever.


"Ding Dong". The Summer's front door rang.

Opening it Buffy finally got to see the costume Xander had been hiding from the rest of them. She couldn't help but think how cool it looked. "Buffster, Lady of Buffdom."

He sang before bowing before her. "Why thank you kind sir." She played along with him. "So where's Willow?" His voice called from under the gray helmet.

"Oh, she's coming. And I think you're going to be impressed with her outfit." The blond slayer told him with a smile. She would so love for him and Willow to finally hook up. They'd make such a cute couple.

"Really? And here I thought she'd go as a ghost like she has for the last three years." Before Buffy could argue the young redhead called out to them from the top of the stairs.

"Well that's a very impressive boo you've got there." He called out to her. The young slayer couldn't help but sigh in defeat. "Well come on, we've got babysitting duty to get to."

Something they were all thinking, how very unfair it was for that little troll Snyder to make them watch over all the kids from the neighborhood.

Willow and Buffy walked a bit further ahead of Xander, they wanted some time alone to talk. "What happened to your other costume?" The slayer asked.

The redhead just shook her head, "I can't go out in public wearing that. Maybe next year, I just can't." She said somewhat ashamed of how shy she could be sometimes.

"But how do you expect to catch Xander's eye if you don't at least try and get his attention?"

She scuffed, "Didn't you see his outfit? I mean he looked drool worthy! Why would he want me?" He couldn't, she thought. Willow knew he'd never see her as anything but a friend.


"Bugger all! I have to buy the guy that did this a drink." Spike said with a toothy grin. He wouldn't normally go out on Halloween but Drusilla kept prompting him too, so he let her win.

It didn't take him long to see that something wicked was going on. For one, all the kids had disappeared only to be replaced by demons, monsters, and other evil creatures.

The master vampire could very well smell the magic in the air.

And his dark princess Dru had a vision. Something had made the slayer weak, and all he needed to do was find her. Then he could get that hat trick he'd been mooning over since they got to Sunnydale.

"Boss, we spotted her on Elm Street. She was being chased by a pirate." One of his minions told him. William the Bloody laughed fully at hearing the story.

Seems the little tart dressed up like some noble women, all puffy hair and no superpowers. She was right for the picking. "And her little sidekicks? Red and the boy?"

The redhead he'd give to Drusilla as a present, but the boy, well Spike had plans for him. His grand sire Angelus had offered the whelp to him on parent-teacher night. But it was just a ruse to get him to lower his guard.

And that was something the blond vampire couldn't forgive. To spite his grand sire he was going to turn the boy, then send him off to get killed by Angel.

That'd put a cramp in the old sod's morals. Having to kill someone that he'd been trying to protect.

"The redhead was with her. She was running through cars and demons like a ghost." The minion told his master knowing that if Spike liked the information he might even reward him.

"Hmm, ghost huh? Can't really kill one of those. Well what about the boy? The one that's always hanging with the little tarts?" If he couldn't kill the girl at least he'd get to kill the slayer and whelp.

A nervous look passed over the minion's visage. One Spike did not miss, "Well?" He demanded.

"I think I saw him, but he was dressed in some kind of armor. And before I could get a closer look he well.... flew away." He waited for what he knew was coming.

"Flew away? What he turned into a bloody bird?" The master vampire sneered. The minion took a few steps backwards, "Umm, no. He still looked human, he just smelled differently. And he threw a car at one of the pirates."

A perplexed look appeared on Spike's face. "Threw a car at a pirate? And what do you mean smelled different?" He wondered out loud as he followed the demons to the place where they saw the slayer last.

"He smelled like ozone. And he didn't even touch the car. He just waved his hand and it went flying." He informed his master. It had been a weird sight. And he wasn't in any hurry to fight the boy now.

It wasn't just the smell that changed. It was like the air around him was charged, menacing.

"Sod it all. Fine, I don't care about casper and bird boy. Just find me that damned slayer."


"Damn it! We've got to get her to Giles." Willow shouted. It was no fun being a ghost. Not one that was dressed like a hooker too. She couldn't touch anything, it was annoying as hell.

"Fine, go out and see if you can spot anyone coming." Angel ordered her as he hauled Buffy over his shoulder. He'd finally lost patience with her and just knocked her out.

At least Cordelia seemed to have calmed down. She was a bit cranky at first, after being chased by big foot. But she soon got over it at seeing that Buffy was out of it and Willow was see through.

A few seconds later Willow returned, having walked through the kitchen wall. "Jesus, don't do that!" Angel told her with a shudder. He never liked ghosts.

She just shot him a dirty look before saying, "Coasts clear. Now all we need to do is get her to Giles. I'm sure he'll know what's happened. Then we can find Xander."

"Yeah, where is geek boy anyway?" The dark-haired girl asked.

Willow just shook her head as they ran. "I don't know. He was dressed like a king I think. But then when everyone turned into their costumes he flew away!" She told them excitedly.

"What? Like superman?" Both girls gave Angel an odd look. "Hey! I have a life outside of killing vampires. And in that time sometimes I like to read Marvel comics."

"Ok, good for you. But no he didn't turn into superman. I don't think. I mean, he waved his hand and sent a car flying through the air too!" The scantily dressed ghost told them.

Before they could go on with their conversation three little monsters jumped out and attacked. "Angel they're kids! Don't hurt them too bad."

"Right." The vampire cursed with a soul grunted before connecting his fist with one of the little monsters' face sending it flying. The other two attacked his legs, sinking their sharp teeth into his calves. "Gahhh!"

His pain filled yell echoed throughout the night air. It took all his self-control not to break their little necks after that. But he just grabbed their heads and clunked them together, knocking them out.

"Are you alright?" Cor asked with a grimace. He was bleeding badly from his legs. "Come on, we've got to get out of here before others show up." He answered.

They'd have to move quickly; any vampire worth his salt could follow the trail of blood Angel was leaving.

And with Buffy starting to stir in his arms, they couldn't afford to wait for her to wake up. She'd only start whining again about how he was a brute and that Willow and Cordelia were women of questionable virtue.


Giles held up his hands, "Please one at a time."

Willow looked at him still upset, "We've been turned into our costumes! I was dressed as a ghost, and now I am a ghost!" She yelled.

The watcher checked her out from head to toe before asking, "The ghost of what?" Her face turned as red as her hair, "That's not the point. I mean, look at Buffy! She's dressed up like an 18th century noblewoman and now she is one." She pointed at the blond behind him.

"Unhand me you brute! I'll have you brought up on charges as soon as I get to my father. Then we'll see how you like being flogged for all you're worth!" Indeed, the slayer was definitely not herself.

Even Angel was starting to get tired of her. "So you're saying everyone's turned into their costume? But look at Cordelia, she's hasn't become a giant cat."

Willow couldn't argue with that. It was the only thing she couldn't understand. "Well, no. But she made her costume. Yeah, that's it! Me, Buffy, and Xander all bought our costumes at the same place, Ethan's."

The watcher's face paled three shades at hearing that name." Where is this costume store?" He demanded.

After getting the location he ordered Angel to watch over the girls. He had something to do. And he wouldn't allow anyone to talk him out of it either.

"Do not leave me with these.... these..... harlots! I thought you were a man of learning, but I'm sorry to see you're nothing more then another vagabond!" Giles ignored Buffy as he left.

It was almost ten minutes later before anyone spoke. That is other then Buffy and her constant whining. "I've got to get out there. There might be others in trouble." Angel told them.

"Hey! You can't leave us here. What are we going to do if some more monsters show up? Buffy's out of her mind, and Willow couldn't even lift a book. And there's no way I'm going to fight anyone off!" Cor told him.

"Fine! Willow, you can't be hurt. Why don't you go out and look for Xander?" The two hundred fifty year old vampire wasn't really worried too much about him, but he knew Buffy would never forgive him if he let the boy get hurt.

She just gave him a miserable look, "What part of he flew away don't you understand? He's long gone by now." She'd seen how fast he'd moved. He was gone in a matter of seconds once he got in the air.

"Well if he can throw cars like matchboxes I don't see why you're worrying about him. Its not like he can't take care of himself right now." The spandex-wearing cheerleader informed the redhead.

Willow turned to the girl and was about to sprout out a few words her parents would never believe she even knew when she saw something. "Buffy! She's gone!"


A few meters away from the school the noblewoman who was wearing the slayer's body was running as fast as she could. Spike and about a dozen other monsters were on her tail. And they would have caught her too, if a dark figure hadn't dropped out of the sky and scooped her up into his arms.


Across town Ethan Ryan was getting the living daylights beaten out of his by his good old friend Ripper.

"Tell me how to stop the spell." The calm voice came from Giles, who was cleaning his glasses like he didn't have a care in the world. He did this with his foot pressed tightly against Ethan's throat.

"Well old boy, it is good to see that the watcher's haven't made you soft." He spat out before being kicked viciously in the stomach so hard that he could swear he tasted blood. "Tell me how to stop the spell."

"Al...alright!" He coughed up. "The powers in the statue, just break it and the spell will be ended." Without further prompting the watcher walked over and grabbed the demi-god's likeness in his arms before smashing it against the floor.

White light scattered in all directions when he did this. Giles turned back to Ethan only to find him missing, "Bugger." He swore under his breath before heading out to find the others.

The watcher and the scooby gang caught up to each other a few blocks away.

Everything seemed to be back to normal, but they couldn't find either Buffy or Xander. And both Willow and Angel were very worried about them. Cordelia left them to head home having had enough excitement for one night.

Despite their best efforts they couldn't find either Xander or their wayward slayer. And it would be many days before they got any word from them.

But three days after Halloween Giles got a call, "Buffy? Where the bloody hell have you been?!? Is Xander there with you?" The frantic watcher asked.

He didn't have to call the others because both Angel and Willow had been sitting there with him at the time. Even Cor stepped in a few times to ask about them.

"South America? How the hell did you get there?"


Thousands of miles away, South America, a little village off the cost.

"Giles! I'm sorry! We would have called sooner but there wasn't any phones around." The blond slayer sent a glare at her dark haired friend. "If you'd just wire the money, we could get out of here."

It wasn't really all that bad where they were. But it was sort of hard to talk to anyone, since almost no one spoke English. The only reason they got by was because Xander, it seemed, now knew their tongue.

Upon further thought, Xander knew a lot of new things. After the spell had ended she'd gone back to her normal self, and for the most part so had he.

Other then the fact that he still had all the powers he'd gotten from his costume. He could still control metal like magic, making it do anything he so wanted it too.

And he could still fly. He'd told her time and time again that he could just fly them both back by himself but she wasn't having any of it. She still remembered the ride from when she was the noblewoman.

And it wasn't something she wanted to do ever again.

Xander, or rather the prototype of the new Eric had created a field of 'ultra-magnetism' that surrounded the two of them as they flew. A flight that if Xander was right, and Buffy didn't doubt he was; had been thousands of miles in seconds.

Sure, that was a quick flight but just thinking about it made her stomach hurt. She hadn't even been able to see through the bubble that had surrounded them, but it was just too much for her nerves to take.

"You'll do it? Thank God! I don't know if I could have stood sleeping on someone's dirt floor again Giles." The blond slayer thanked him and hung up.

"He says he'll have the money to us in a few hours. All we need to do is just lie low for a little bit." She was talking more to herself then him.

The dark-haired teen was only hanging out with her because she refused to fly, and he refused to leave her. So as soon as she got on the plane he was going to take to the air under his own power.

Once the money had come he and Buffy said their goodbyes, and Xander promised to meet her in Sunnydale. And she the slayer was off towards home. Leaving the young man to think.


He was still having trouble getting around. He was a mutant now. And even if most of the population had no idea they existed, he did. Or really Eric Lehnsherr had.

The first day he'd been really out of it. Eric's mind had been strong! It tried all it could to fight him out of his own head, but without Ethan's magic he couldn't win.

But even after his consciousness had been defeated Eric's powers and memories had stayed with Xander.

The teen could have dealt with the powers, they were cool as hell, but they didn't scare him. Because he knew already how to use them, something else Eric left him. It was the memories he wished he didn't have.

His memories of the Holocaust were the most frightening things Xander had ever seen. Vampires, demons, magic, they didn't scare him as much as the images in his mind did.

He knew they weren't his memories, knew that it was Eric who lived through it. But he couldn't stop the images that bombarded him when he thought of the past.

Xander could remember the day his parents were taken from him. He tried to fight the guards, tried to get to his mother and father, but he couldn't. It was the first time his powers had manifested themselves.

He'd twisted the metal gates between him and his parents, the very iron bent to his will as Eric tried to get to them. Only to be smashed in the face by one of the Nazi's rifles.

He'd failed, and his parents had been taken to the ovens.

Those images were enough to make Xander vomit his dinner up the first night after the spell was broken. His insides felt twisted and distorted. It hurt; it hurt like nothing else in his life had ever hurt.

It hurt because Eric loved his parents, loved his family. It wasn't the indifference Xander felt towards his parents and they towards him, no. This was real love between a child and his parents.

And when they died it didn't matter to Eric that he was a freak, a Jew freak, twice damned in that hellish place. He felt nothing but sorrow and disgust.

Eric blamed himself for their deaths. Blamed himself because he wasn't strong enough to protect them. And he vowed never to be weak again, never to be powerless as those he loved were harmed.

The teen would like for the rest of Eric's time in those camps to be a blur, that they weren't going to stand out as much as his parent's death. But that would be a lie.

He couldn't forget what had happened in the camps. Because Eric would have never allowed himself to forget. Something else he promised himself. To never forget one of their faces.

Hundreds of men, women, and children. He'd watched them come and go. Some from firing squads, some were gased, and some like his parents went into the ovens.

Eric bore witness to it all. Never forgetting a single face, a single name, or a single scream in the night. And Xander remembered right along with him. And in feeling Lehnsherr's conviction Xander felt he didn't want to forget, he couldn't.

He might not have made the promise, but he couldn't turn his back on it. Doing so would be unforgivable. To just close his eyes and forget it all; the very idea was obscene.

So like Eric Lehnsherr, Xander bore witness.

He knew he had to get out of the village, had to get away from people. So he took to the skies, not caring who saw him do it either. And he went into the jungles.

There, he ripped and smashed everything around him. He let his new powers loose, and in only a few moments laid waste to one square block that used to be thick vines and trees.

It calmed him, but it didn't make him feel better. He didn't know anything that could. But he'd spent his rage, and his hate. Hatred for the ones that did that to Eric and the others, and hatred for those who stood by and let it happen.

He was finally ready to go home.


The next few days were tense. Giles and Willow were all over the fact that the powers Xander had, hadn't left him. Nor had the memories of the owner of the armor's life.

It took a lot of research to figure out what Ethan had done. Changing the teen's very genetic code was something Giles would never have believed the chaos mage powerful enough to do.

Which prompted Xander to explain the x-gene and how it had branched off from normal humans.

And it was in depth too. Almost like it was a professor in the field explaining it, and not a 17 year-old teen. It wasn't that Ethan was powerful; it was that he was cleaver.

Only one gene was what separated humans from mutants. So, if he got someone to wear the costume, that person's gene would have to change, the magic made it so.

But genes don't change back; his body didn't see anything wrong with its existence. And it couldn't be taken away since neither Giles nor Jenny Calendar knew of a way to do so.

Even if Xander wore the costume of a normal human, and the spell was cast again he'd still have those powers. Magic and science don't mix.

And besides that things weren't the same between the scoobys. Buffy was the only one who didn't seem bothered by all this but the others were.

Giles took it hard when the young teen told him about the memories he now had. He didn't tell them about Eric, that wasn't any of their business. The watcher took the news hard, clasping the teen by the shoulder sadly before retiring in his office.

It was just another reason for him to hate Ethan. Forcing that into an innocent young man's mind, making him see those things. Giles swore he'd have Ryan's head for it, and the others thought he was being dramatic, but Xander knew that the watcher had every notice to cut the mage's head clean off his shoulders.

Willow didn't take it too well either. She was Jewish, and her grandmother had been in the camps. She'd seen the pain in her eyes when she talked about it. Seen the inner torment in her grandmother's eyes as she thought about the past.

It was the same pain in her best friend's eyes now. A faraway look, he might have been standing right beside her, but she knew in his mind he was miles away.

Besides the memories he still had the powers. And they were awesome.

There were few things the dark-haired teen couldn't do now. He could fly, could throw around cars like they were nothing, and he could kill vampires or demons with a thought.

It was because he could affect their blood. Blood has iron in it; anyone that went to school knows that simple fact. And now Xander could control metal, all metal.

He could very well lift a person just by touching the iron in their blood. And if he could touch it, he could stop it in their veins. Which killed demons in moments. Vampires weren't so different. It wasn't hard for him to find their hearts and smash them, resulting in the vampire turning to dust without anyone so much as touching them.

It was a frightening sight for them all. Such rare power, that seemed to know no limit. That and his inscrutable _expression as he killed them with nothing more then the wave of his hand.

Before when Xander had staked a vampire he'd bragged about it, or at least showed pride in himself for doing it. But now? It was like he'd been carved out of stone. His face showed nothing of his inner thoughts or emotions.

Something that put Giles and Angel on edge. Neither liked not being able to tell what he felt. Before they'd never given it much thought, but now the teen was a walking powerhouse.

Which led to some problems.


"Why is it such a problem for you to tell me where you've gone?" The watcher demanded.

"Its not your concern. I'm not your slayer, what I do with my free time is mine." The dark-haired youth shouted back coldly. After seeing how very powerful Xander could be Giles asked that he patrol with Buffy every night.

Of course he didn't have a problem with it. If Buffy was safer with him there then who was he to say no? Not that Buffy was all too happy with her new patrol partner.

She never got to kill any vampires or demons anymore. He'd simply kill them before she had the chance to even raise her stake.

And with much arguing and whining Buffy got her watcher to have Xander patrol on his own. She went one way and he went the other. This was what the argument was about now.

"It's not too much to ask where you've been, or what you've seen now is it?" Giles asked with a glare. He wanted the teen to explain in detail all the demons he'd killed, and if any other supernatural stuff happened around him.

Which Xander took much like Buffy had. He refused to spell out word for word everything. For him it was enough to say, "Killed nine vampires. Or I've killed a dozen yellow demons."

The slayer did the same, and he refused to be treated like he was being. It was plain to him that Giles didn't trust him, and he'd seen Angel more then once following him when he was patrolling.

The two of them were keeping their eyes on him, as if they were waiting for him to do something wrong. He saw why they were acting that way as well. Fear.

Fear of the unknown. Neither Angel nor Giles knew very much about mutants. And they just couldn't trust someone with such power to do the right thing. And this set Xander's nerves on edge.

It was the same irrational fear that Eric had seen all his life. And he couldn't stand it. Neither Willow nor Buffy acted like that. Neither did Jenny.

And he knew why, it was because they had power as well.

Buffy was the slayer; she was in her own right a mutant. Willow was a witch; she was learning the first steps to magic. And Jenny was a techno pagan; magic was her forte.

But Giles didn't do that anymore. And it wasn't that he couldn't trust anyone with power. It was that he couldn't trust someone with power that he couldn't understand.

Slaying and magic were normal to him. People being able to read minds, or control metal weren't. It was just too much, the idea of mutants among them.

Angel's problem was around the same thing. It wasn't that he couldn't understand power; he couldn't understand that much power. In his eyes Xander was just TOO powerful. He could do too many things, and he had so few limits as well.

And like many arguments before the young man stormed out on Giles. Refusing to explain his actions or tell the watcher where he was at, at all times.

As soon as he was outside he took to the skies. And he flew higher then anyone else ever had. Not just through the sky, but into space itself. Something he'd kept to himself.

His shell of 'ultra-magnetism' protected him from the vacuum of space, and he always kept enough air inside the shell so that breathing wasn't a problem either.

The sight was breathtaking. He stood floating only a few meters away from the Earth.

Beneath him was a giant blue ball. It was beautiful in it's self. But he could also turn and look towards the moon. Through Eric's memories he knew he couldn't reach it even with his powers.

But he could reach out with his hand and pretend. It was enough; it was more then enough. How many people could saw they touched the moon and stars?

It was here that he came to think. And it was there he finally knew he could no longer stay in Sunnydale. It had only been a month since the spell had taken effect, but to him it felt like ages.

He had to leave before he started hating Giles and the others. Because Xander knew if he stayed that's what would happen. Maybe he wouldn't hate the girls but he'd soon come to hate the watcher and Angel.

As well as hate all the humans around him. He knew they'd hate and fear him because of what he was, what he could do. And so he left them to find people like himself, mutants.


His goodbyes with the girls were tearful, Buffy, Willow, Jenny, and even Cordelia. He'd promised to keep in touch and come home to visit, but all could feel that when he left he wasn't coming back.

Of course he'd keep his word to call them and talk with them, but he'd never come back to Sunnydale as more then just a visitor. It just wasn't his home anymore.

Xander gave them all his pager and cell number and made them promise to call him if they needed any help.

And as his last act as a scooby before leaving for parts unknown, he brought both Spike and Drusilla to them and with his powers held the vampires still as Buffy staked them.

He was gone before the last grains of dust hit the floor.