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After the wolves have gone: a season 8 ficlet

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  • After the wolves have gone: a season 8 ficlet

    ---[[This little fic is set after the various "Wolves at the Gate" issues, when the gang are back in Scotland.]]---

    Xander had hoped the pub would be empty ? it was a Sunday night ? but there were quite a few regulars there, and all of them were giving Xander and his companion looks. Looks that implied pitchfork action, and not because he was sitting with the pasty-faced Count, who'd courteously toned down his cloak and ruffles look to a sleeker, more modern suit, to blend in. More because the locals suspected they were tourists, or, even worse - English.

    "So, Drac?What would you like?"

    Xander got up from the table they'd bagged in the corner and nodded his head towards the bar.

    Dracula answered without needing to look at the array of pumps behind the bar. It seemed he was familiar with British hostelries. "I will have a pint of, what do the locals so charmingly call it? heavy?"

    "Gotcha." Xander nodded, wishing Dracula hadn't said "locals" quite so loudly.

    "Thank you..." Dracula smiled, showing a bit of fang. "?Manservant."

    Xander held up a warning finger. "Hey! I thought we'd agreed. No more of that."

    "Not even said ironically?"

    "Not even."

    "Very well," said Dracula, sounding disappointed.

    Xander strolled over to the bar, feeling very conspicuous. He should've taken Dracula out for thank-you drinks in Tokyo instead. Stupid. But, they were here now. As he ordered the drinks, an old man who was sitting at the bar leaned closer.

    "We don't like your sort round here."

    "My?sort?" Xander's eyes flicked towards Dracula, and back to the old man. Oh. "Oh, we're not?together. Like that. Definitely not. He asked. But, I said no. Then he cried, which was awkward. But, no. Can't two men have a drink in a pub without people assuming?"

    "Da'ent be daft," said the man, crossly. He leaned still closer, breathing hard liquor vapours into Xander's face. " I dinnae think ye's a bufty. I mean?magic folk."

    "What?" Xander blinked, to hear that sort of thing referred to directly. Never would've happened in Sunnydale. Oh sweet denial, how I miss you!. "I'm not?I'm just a guy. Buying beer." He lifted the two glasses, now full poured, to demonstrate. "No magic, honest."

    "Well, yer know your ain business best I'm sure," grumbled the old man. "But, magic only leads tae trouble."

    Xander smiled awkwardly and took the beers over. "Here. Pint of heavy for you. Pint of something that makes you feel a bit less like you're digesting a four course meal for me. Then, a hasty exit after we've drunk them for both of us. I don't think they like us in here very much."

    "Few people do like me. Though many respect me," said Dracula. "Or?they used to."

    "Don't get maudlin. You haven't even started drinking yet."

    "I can't help it," said Dracula. He took a sip of the pint. "I was mighty once. And now?just a joke. Even my former servant doesn't respect me."

    "Sorry," said Xander. He patted Dracula on the shoulder. "But, I'm grateful, you know. You helped us out of a tight spot. Perhaps, since you're not so good at being a force of unstoppable evil, you could join us?"

    Dracula smiled. "I think you overestimate my benevolence. I helped you only because I felt?nostalgic for our old bond."

    Xander shrugged. "Well, you fought the good fight all the same.You really put the pal in?evil bloodsucking fiend-ipal." He lifted his glass. "Cheers."

    Dracula clinked glasses with him. "The world?is a strange place sometimes."

    "You said it," said Xander. And, as he sipped his drink, he wondered...what would magic - the force that brought them here, indirectly... the force that had changed his life forever when he first saw a friend turned into a vampire... bring them next?

    He figured the old man probably had it right. Trouble.

    -- Robofrakkinawesome BANNER BY FRANCY --

  • #2
    Ooo, I like it! This is kinda how I'd like to see the arc play out - Xander's in control of the situation, but still kind to an old man (vamp) in love. You've put Xander in the best possible light.