The Tiger And The Dragon

Author: Nick Sicinski <diabloslayer21[at]>

Rating: PG-13

Summary: ONESHOT - Hell-o-ween story, different costume for Xander - what happens when a lack of options has a wise man with a background of both peace and violence?

Disclaimer: Joss and ME own Buffy, and I do not own the other series that is used in this story.

AN: In the tradition of the season, here's another look at an old favorite - inspired by Teri's 'Grasshopper'.

AN2: Sadly, no Dawn.

Chapter 1

Xander watched as Jonathan took the last gun out of the bargain bin and simmered - he'd wanted to go as a soldier that year, namely because that was all he could afford, but now that idea was out of the window even as he went looking for something else. What was a soldier without a gun? Unarmed.

"Damn," he heard someone swear softly with a light British accent and turned to see the owner of the store, whom had sold Buffy a noblewoman's gown earlier, hold up a set of clothing, complete with a hat, a cylindrical case, a satchel and a jacket, and shake his head.

"Something wrong?" The man jerked and turned to look at him, but then smiled, and it was a smile that set off Xander's weird-o-meter.

"Not anymore, my boy. I am Ethan, the proprietor of this shop, and I'd like to make you a deal on this costume - he's a holy man, a wise man, and I need to unload it."

"I've got ten bucks, man - there's now way I can afford that." The man smiled and Xander knew that his entire argument was officially sunk.

Summers Residence

Joyce blinked a third time at the person in front of her and then felt a smile tug at her lips as she bowed, "Hello, Master Caine."

'Master Caine' bowed back to her, "Greetings, fair lady. I am here to see if … Buffy and Willow are prepared for our travels." Xander was in a pair of dark, loose pants, had on a loose shirt of white underneath a dark jacket and wore not only the hat, but the satchel, the necklace / pouch, and had what appeared to be a flute poking out of the satchel.

"She'll be down in a second - do you have them?" He arched an eyebrow at her and pulled up his sleeves to reveal two 'fake' burns - one the inside of each forearm were patches of pink burn-scar tissue in the respective shapes of a tiger and one of a dragon, and they looked totally real form her point of view. "Neat!"

"I take it you're a fan, then?" She nodded happily, remembering the slight crush she'd had on the actor back in her younger years, and then Xander grinned, "Why Joyce, if I didn't know any better, I'd be forced to say that you were a bit of a Kung Fu geek."

She gave a look, "Xander, we all have a bit of a geek in us, and Kung Fu happened to be mine."

"I'll try and remember that, mom." Joyce turned and saw her daughter, dressed in a fluffy gown and in a dark wig, slowly walk down the stairs, and then smiled at her friend, "Greetings, Master Caine."

"Lady Elizabeth." Joyce was happy to see and hear that Xander was completely into his costume even as he removed his hat yet again, "Is Willow ready? I feel that Principal Snyder would be most … displeased, if we were late."

Joyce went about finding her camera even as she heard Willow walk down the stairs, took a picture of the kids and sent them off with a smile before getting her own costume ready - really, who in their right mind would ever guess that she was not only a Kung Fu fan, but also had a body good enough to pull of Diana Prince, a.k.a. Wonder Woman?

Spell has hit them

Kwai Chang Caine looked around himself and frowned at the sense of imbalance not only in the air, but in those around him … and within himself, "This … is not right." He closed his eyes for a second and put his Shambala training to good use, centering himself with several cleansing breaths, and then opened them again to see the world as it really was, drawing in a sharp breath as he saw not only the evil chi around him, but also the disruption of the Chaos magic, "How very disturbing." He set off on foot towards the center of the disturbance, absently passing by demon-children that came at him with a move of his hand and the occasional twist of his body, until he came up against a pirate with a very real sword.

"ARRR, it looks like we have ourselves a Chinaman, boys! I say we split him up the middle and read his innards." The lead pirate, also a victim of twisted chi and chaos, charged him, and Caine found himself forced to strike the man, directing him off into a tree and knocking him out, causing the other pirated to flee.

"Odd," he mused as ht began to walk again. "That felt strangely … good."


Diana looked around again as she felt her strength and power return to her weakened body, but then ran her hair through her quickly-darkening shorn locks again - somebody would pay for cutting her hair. She'd bet it had been Kyle or Wally, the Green Lantern or the Flash, as both Batman and Superman knew how … protective … of her hair she was.

Clearing her head with a shake, she took out her golden lasso and took to the sky - there was evil about, and Wonder Woman was needed.


Ethan cackled even as he heard the door of his shop open, "Oh, Ripper, I hoped you would come here."

"I … am not this 'Ripper' you speak of." Damn - it had to be that boy he sold the Shaolin Priest costume too.

"A shame, that." Ethan looked at the boy and could immediately feel the forces marshalling within the hardened frame, "Tell me, Master Caine, what do you think of my creation?"

"You have caused this chaos." The young man walked forwards, his face drawn into a frown, "Why would you do such a thing?"

Ethan grinned, "Why not? Of course, a Shambala master such as yourself can't appreciate true chaos - it's quite beautiful, if you really think about it."

"You … are a sick man, Ethan Rayne." Ethan jumped slightly, knowing that he had never told the boy his name, and pales as the boy took up a position of focus, one hand forwards, palm out, and the other drawn back, cupped slightly, "I shall not allow this to go on, Chaos Mage."

"Ah, but do you even know where the magical foci is, you stupid Chinaman? No, I am …" Ethan's voice trailed off as 'Caine' turned and thrust his hand forwards, sending an invisible wave of pure chi, pure life energy, into the bust of the Roman god, Janus, and causing the plaster head to explode. Even as the wave of power exploded outwards and caught him in the blast as well, he could feel the wrath of Janus and welcomed the blackness of unconsciousness - it wasn't wise to anger a god, regardless of who they were, and Ethan had done just that.

Sunnydale High - next morning

Buffy looked at Giles, who, like Willow, was staring dumbfounded at something in front of them, something that she herself could not see, "Guys? What's wrong?" She walked forwards and blinked at the sight as well - Xander Harris, class clown, good of all trades, and general smart ass of the first order, sat in the middle of a table, which happened to be covered with rice paper. Now, that in and of itself would not have been news except for that Buffy knew just how brittle the paper was and it also left foot prints when walked on - the paper that Xander sat upon had not a single foot print on it, which begged the question of just how he had gotten up there, "Xand?"

"Greetings, Elizabeth." His voice was a clam as a pond without the slightest hint of a breeze, and when she walked around she could hear that not only was his heart beating at a steady rhythm, albeit a slow one, but she could see that he was completely at peace with himself.

"So, I'm guessing that Master Caine stayed with you, then." She blushed as Willow snickered, remembering when she had screamed at the mere presence of a car, let alone jumping at shadows all night.

"No, he is no longer with me, Elizabeth. Rather, he left me his teachings and has returned to wherever he had previously been." Xander opened his eyes and she could see the vast depths of his knowledge there, but also a bit of a mischievous twinkle, "So, did you really call a car a demon, Buffy?"

Even as Willow's snicker turned into a full-on laugh, Buffy growled - this was now officially a war; the noblewoman may still be within her, but she would NOT run anymore, "How'd you know that?"

"I didn't - you confirmed it for me, though." She flushed even more as Giles chuckled at this and then blanched as Xander placed a hand down and vaulted off of the rice paper, allowing her to see the baggy shirt and pants he was it, but the Slayer part of her mind noticed that his hand left no print and his feet made no noise when he landed, not to mention the tiger-shaped burn on the inside of his arm - if nothing else, she was going to get him to teach her that.

"I would be honored to teach you, Buffy," Xander said, bowing, but when he came back up, he wore a smile as she idly wondered if he could read her mind. "No, I am not telepathic, but I can read expressions like a champion." She growled as Giles joined Willow in laughter.

Elsewhere in another dimension

Peter looked at his pop as he and the Ancient One, Lo Si, sat quietly on the floor and sipped his tea, "So, pop, do you have an explanation for what happened last night? You just kind … spaced out … for a while."

His dad smiled a little and laughed, "Yes, Peter, I did, but I also went on a journey that was far more insightful than most. I learned that there are people out there, young people not yet out of school, whom fight against the darkness without anyone else knowing. One of them does so without any powers or training at all, and it was his body that I was in."

"Possessions are very powerful thing, Kwai Chang Caine," Lo Si said with a wise air about him, but also an air of that damned root he always ate, "but also it has unseen consequences."

Peter was shocked when his father nodded, "That it does, Master - I now find myself oddly fascinated with this thing." Pop held up a clear-plastic wrapped object and turned to him, "Tell me, Peter, what is so good about these … Twinkies?"


Later that day

AN: At behest of Djhardim, an epilogue to tie up one large loose end. A little crude in some parts, but mostly due to my muse <glares at the pan-wielding terror>.

Joyce paced back and forth in the art gallery, wondering just what in the world was going on - her body wasn't as soft as it once had been, she was stronger than ever and her hair, which had always been a nice amber color, was now as black as a raven's wing, not t mention past her shoulders in length. She remembered what had happened the previous night, being Diana Prince/Wonder Woman, but outside of that, she didn't have a clue what was going on.

"Calm yourself, Joyce." She spun around and saw Xander standing in the doorway of her office, a serene smile on his lips as he walked in, with bare feet, dressed much the same as he had been the previous night, "I know these new … developments … are shocking, but please, calm yourself and I shall explain as best as I can."

"Xander, what's going on here? I shoved a 700-pound wooden crate out of the way today like it was a large cardboard box, my body hasn't been this firm in twenty years and I was floating over my bed this morning. FLOATING!"

He nodded and took her by the elbow, leading her over to a small couch off to the side and sitting her down, "Joyce, first of all, you look fabulous - if I were ten years older, Buffy would have a new step-father by the end of the day in that we'd go to Las Vegas and elope." Joyce blushed at that and calmed down, "Secondly, there is much about Sunnydale that you have been kept in the dark about, perhaps wrongly, and I am here to explain a few things."

"Master Caine changed you, didn't he," wasn't so much of a question as it was a statement of fact.

"Yes, he did - I see the world more clearly now, Joyce, and I think that you shall be the same, once you get your new gifts under control. Now, first off, what was your costume last night?"

"Wonder Woman."

He arched an eyebrow, "Linda Carter?" She nodded and he sighed, "And you didn't let me see you in the costume? Joyce, why do you torture me like that?"

She laughed a little, feeling more at ease as Xander skillfully manipulated her into a calmer frame of mind, "So, you're trying to tell me that I have her powers now?"

He shrugged slowly, deliberately, "For now, you ARE Wonder Woman for all intents and purposes, but for how long, I cannot say. Your new gifts may fade over the next few days, weeks, months, even years, but accept them and use them."

She sighed and lay back into the back of the couch, "You are a wise man, Master Harris."

He joined her on the back of the couch, "Perhaps, perhaps now - we shall see. So, Joyce, just how firm is that body of yours?"

She looked at him and arched a now-dark eyebrow, "Do not make insinuations that you're not prepared to keep, Xander."

He gave her a level look, "Joyce, if I wished to ravish you, I would have done so by now - I want to see just how much of Wonder Woman is there, so I am asking you for a spar."

For a second she felt fretful, but then a large swell of pride came to bear as the thought of herself being scared of a MAN, of all things, came to the forefront, "Let's do this."

Summers Residence

Buffy followed the sounds coming from upstairs, not sure what to make of them as she got home from school; they were female in nature, and sounded very pleased - she wasn't stupid to think that her mother didn't take care of things herself, but at home, when she was home? No way.

As she reached the door, she heard her mother gasp out, "Oh, Xander, that feesl so good." Buffy's jaw dropped to the ground at her mother's very content purr - Xander? And HER MOTHER? "How did you get this good at such a young age?"

"This is my first time doing this, Joyce." Xander's voice was a little tense, but it was definitely him, "Are you enjoying this?"

"Oh, Gods, yes! If this is the first time you've done this, then I'm going to marry you just to see if you get better."

Buffy drew herself up and saw the world in red colors - Xander was having SEX with her MOTHER! That just didn't compute, so she turned the knob of the door and stormed in … only to find something she didn't expect - her mother, with a solid, muscular body, in a two-piece bikini, on her stomach on the bed, with Xander on top of her, in a pair of shorts and a shirt that revealed that he too had a harder body, massaging her shoulders and back. "Huh?"

"Buffy?" "Buff?" Both people on the bed looked up as one and frowned before speaking as one, "What are you doing here?"

"Ah, uh, I'm … not sure. What are you two doing here? Because from out there it sounded like …" She felt her cheeks burning and glowing as she looked down, ashamed that she had thought the worst of them.

"What do you mean that …" Her mother's voice trailed off as a knowing look entered her eyes and she then began to giggle as Xander continued to look a little confused, "You mean, you thought that Xander and I were … that we were …" Her mother began to laugh very hard as Xander seemed to catch on and choke in laughter himself.

"Well, that's what it sounded like from outside the door!"

"Buff, trust me, if we WERE doing that, we'd have the common sense to at least get a motel room for a few hours." Xander slid off her mother's back and began to clean his hands while her mom sat up, smiling contently, "I felt your mother's distress during school and we spoke at length about her new gifts."

"Gifts?" Her mother had not only got a harder body, but had put on about an entire cup size, "It looks like she hit the lottery, Xand."

Her mom smiled, "Don't worry, honey - Xander already told me about the whole Slayer thing and a lot of things make sense now. I am, however, a little upset at you for not telling me about all of this."

Buffy glared at Xander, who shrugged deliberately and slowly at her, before looking back at her mother, "So, just to be sure, you and Xander aren't … you know?"

Xander walked forwards was caught in a side-armed grab as her mother pulled him in front of herself and pressed against his back, "I'm not sure, Buffy - for back rubs like that, I'm willing to let almost twenty years of age difference slide."

Buffy gaped silent for a second before Xander and her mom began to chuckle, then she realized that she was being played - she didn't like it, but went along with it, "Do I have to call him 'dad', mom? It'd be too freaky."

Xander shrugged again, but then grinned evilly, "I won't mind, but only if I get the chance to spank you, Buffy." He was immediately hit by a pillow in the back of his head and turned to look at her mom, who whistled innocently, "Oh, you are going to pay for that." The pair of them were soon rolling around, hitting each other with pillows and tickling one another, and Buffy couldn't help it, so she joined in and soon found herself on the run from a wonder woman and a Master of the Tickle-style of Kung Fu.

The End