Swan Song

Author: Nodakskip <nodakskip[at]aol.com>

Beta: Theo

Summary: The 'cannon' version of Xander and Cordelia's last meeting.

Mozambique, Africa

Xander Harris opened up the glass doors, and walked onto his seventh floor balcony into the warm night air. Only wearing his sweat pants and his Homer Simpson slippers, he looked up at the stars.

Like many nights these days, he couldn't sleep. And it wasn't the climate, because hey, born and raised in southern California. And back before when he and the Scoobs were battling the First, he could sleep the entire night - but not so, these days.

For some reason, Xander just felt he needed to be up. It was the oddest feeling, and he had no idea why he had it.

"You still like to look out at the stars, huh?"

The voice shocked him out of his thoughts, as the young American jumped and spun around. He watched, on guard, as a slim figure walked out of his dark bedroom. It was a woman dressed in grey pants and a silver and gray top.

"Cordy?" Xander asked, shocked.

"Yeah, it's me Dweeb Boy," the woman told him, before she stopped to look over his bare chest. "But it doesn't look like I can call you a dweeb, not anymore. You've really filled out, Xander."

"Ah, thanks..." Harris replied, still on guard. "Not that I'm not happy to see you, but the last I saw you it was in a hospital in Los Angeles..."

"And it didn't look like I would be waking up anytime soon," she finished for him.


Reaching out, Cordelia took him by the hand and dragged him over to the patio table and chairs. "Well," she said, as they sat down. "I'm touching you; so I'm not the First, if that's what you're wondering."

"I wasn't thinking that," Xander said a little too quickly.

"Oh, you so were!" she responded with a grin. "Xander, I don't have a lot of time here, only a few minutes, so just listen okay?" At his nod, she continued. "It's my time, Xander. The good fight, for me at least, is over. I'm dead," the woman said simply.

"What?!" he shouted. "Cordy! But you're here-"

Ms. Chase scooted her chair over next to his. "I'm on borrowed time here, Harris, so please just listen!" she pleaded, as she again took his hand and placed it in hers. "I've already said my goodbyes to Angel and the rest of the gang; now it's just you left."

"Goodbye?" he asked in a low whisper.

Cordy took a deep breath, and then started to say, "Xander, I owe you so much from back in the old days. You showed me that I was a real person, that I could be someone. And that was one of the many reasons I did and will always love you. I asked Angel if he ever wondered how it would have been, if we had met that night-"

"What night?"

The former seer ignored his confused face as she continued, "But I have to admit to you that over the years in LA, I also wondered about how *we* would have ended up. I'm sorry I didn't call you as much as I did. We completely drifted apart, even when we didn't think we would."

She gave him one of her large smiles, that almost broke the young man's heart. "I know you still keep that ticket to my first play in your wallet, next to our graduation photo. Do me a favor, and keep them there."

"Always," Xander said with a tear coming down.

Suddenly the brunette woman looked skyward and then back at him sadly, before she got up. He quickly followed her, "Cordy?"

"They're calling me, my time is just about up. But I need you to do something for me," she told him.


Cordelia looked him in the eyes. "Please don't blame Angel for what happened to me, when you hear details. Jasmine did this to me, not him. And I think you guys could make great friends someday, if you just give each other a chance."

Despite it all, Xander had to wonder. "Me and Angel?"

"Yeah, you never know what could happen," Cordy said with a warm smile. "Now promise me."

Harris closed his eyes and nodded. He knew it was not going to be easy, but if push came to shove he would do it - for her.

"Thank you, Xander," Cordelia said, before she pulled him into a hug. They held each other for several moments, before she pulled back. "Now, for the main reason I came here."

"And that is?" the guy asked, confused.

"I know we never really mentioned it after I moved away," Cordelia started, as she cupped his face in her hand. "But Alexander Lavelle Harris - I forgive you."

Xander looked at her, stunned; she had just said the words he'd never thought she would ever say. He made no attempts to hide the tears now, "Cor-"

"I mean it, Xander. I forgive you for everything!" She said a little softer, "And I want you to get out of this funk you're in, about never again getting into another serious relationship 'cause you're cursed about women. Because Xander, I know for a fact that there is a great woman out there, just waiting to find you. Believe me on that."

"I do," he stated firmly.

"Good," she said. "Because whenever I look down on you from now on, I want to see you happy. You've got a lot of work ahead of you, you all do. But know this. At the end of your very long life, all of us will be up there waiting for you; Angel, Wesley, Buffy, Willow and all the others."

Cordy then sighed. "I have to go now," she told him sadly.

"No, wait! Stay just a bit longer-" Xander pleaded with her.

She stepped backwards, out of his arms. "It's not goodbye. Just keep being the best possible man you can be, and you already have a big welcoming party for you up there. But that won't be for a long time yet, if I have anything to do with it."

She started to fade, but Cordelia being Cordelia she had to get in the final word. "And don't worry. I won't rub it in too much to Jesse, about the fun we had in those utility closets!"

And then she was gone.


Our Heavenly Fathers Church. Los Angeles, California

Two days later...

The service had concluded a ten minutes before, but several people were still in the church. All of them were talking about the woman inside the open casket, at the front of the long lines of pews.

"It was a beautiful service," Mrs. Chase told them weepily, as her husband held her.

"My little sis would have loved it," another woman who looked like an older version of Cordelia said, as her husband comforted her.

"It's nice to know she had such good friends," Mr. Chase said as he looked over Angel, Wesley, Fred, Lorne, and Gunn. "I just wished I could have been there for her more, instead of locked up in some Federal..." he trailed off when the sound of the wooden front doors opening caused everyone to look towards the entrance.

And many were shocked by who they saw.

"Isn't that Alexander Harris?" Mrs. Chase asked to her husband.

But it was Angel who answered, "Yes it is..." as he moved to towards the aisle, as Xander came up. "Xander."

The one-eyed man just glanced at him as he walked past. And they all just watched, as he went up and whispered something to Cordelia in her casket. Then he pulled out a rose, and set it in between her hands.

Xander kissed her forehead before he moved back, wiping the tears away. He was as emotional as Angel had ever seen him. "Mr. and Mrs. Chase, I know we never got along, but - God, I don't know what to say, really. Your daughter was one hell of a woman. And she deserved better, than to die at age 24."

"Thank you," Mrs. Chase told him, as she leaned over and hugged him. Xander then shook Mr. Chase's hand, before turning to Angel.

"Buffy and the others wanted to come, but they couldn't get away. Ever since we took over for the Council, there are so many things going on...sorry, but it was just too short notice. They said for me to pass on their regrets, though." He turned back to her parents, "But all her old friends will come when they can, to pay their respects. Though everyone might not have shown it, Cordelia was one of us."

"How did you find out so quickly, Xander?" Wesley asked him.

Xander looked at the man, and gave him the truth. "An old friend stopped by out of nowhere, and she told me what I needed to know."

Judging by the look Angel and Wesley shared, Xander knew that they knew who he meant. "Can we discuss this friend later tonight, after the-" the Englishman trailed off, not wanting to say it.

"Sure Wes," Xander said. "But for the moment there are some others who wanted to pay their respects to Cordelia, and the woman she was." He turned to look at the family. "If that's all right?"

"Of course, dear," Mrs. Chase said.

Xander moved to the back of the group, and motioned to the doors. The doors at the rear and the sides of the church opened up. The group watched in mute surprise as many teenage girls came marching in, all dressed in black. The leader, a 19-year-old African girl stepped up to Xander, with all the others forming a line behind her.

He just nodded to her and stepped aside. The Slayer went up to the casket and said simply, "Thank you." As she moved, the next girl stepped up, "Thank you."

Angel, his group and Cordelia's family watched in surprise as over 60 vastly different teenage girls, now Slayers, said thank you to the woman who had helped save the world countless times, over the years.

The End