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04 April 2009 @ 01:51 am
FIC: Xander Harris versus Destiny (1/?) (Mature)  
Title: Xander Harris versus Destiny (1/?)
Authors: cordelianne, reremouse, savoytruffle
Pairing: Spike/Xander
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Revisiting of old haunts, non-verbal communication, gas tanks of unknown capacity
Summary: Xander's got places to be, things to do. Giles wishes Xander had given the Council a heads up. Spike figures, what the hell, the pay's good and it's not like he's got other plans at the moment.




It’s high noon when Xander drives past the wasteland that used to be Sunnydale.

Midnight might have been a more fitting tribute, but he’s making a point here.

Of course, driving through the desert in the middle of the day in a car that you bought last week for the bargain price of the last three hundred dollars you had in your pocket the day after the other clunker you were driving finally gave up the ghost may be a bit like cutting off your nose to spite your face.

Especially if you happened to buy your bargain car in Washington State.

Where air conditioning is considered a frill.

Not that its spite, exactly.

More like non-verbal communication.

The very long and sweaty equivalent of sticking out his tongue.

And maybe putting his thumb to his nose and wiggling his fingers a bit.

Just a bit.

Of course the other thing that doesn’t occur to you when you think about taking a midday drive past your old hometown that’s now a hole in the ground is that gas stations tend to get sucked into the ground along with everything else. Xander doesn’t know this new gas gauge well enough to know whether the little red line hovering over ‘E’ means he’s got another fifteen miles in his tank or another fifteen feet.

And if he loses the tiny bit of relief that comes from the dry air rushing through the rolled down windows, he’s not sure he’ll last another fifteen minutes.

Just when the full badness of his plan is beginning to sink in, Xander spots something in the distance.

In another mile, he reaches it and it turns out to be a rickety and wizened wooden stand with a couple red plastic gas cans sitting on top of it and an equally rickety and wizened man resting beneath its meager shade.

The engine kills itself before Xander can.

The old man stands and steps up to the open passenger window.

“Fill ’er up,” Xander says.

The man looks like the gas can should topple him, but he hefts it easily. It takes almost three cans to fill the tank. He returns to the window.

“How much?” Xander asks.

The man flashes three fingers twice.

Xander pulls out his wallet and removes its entire contents.

Counts.

Thirty-three dollars exactly.

He hands it over.

“Lucky man,” the man says.

Xander quirks his lips into something like an answer, turns the key and drives away.



On the bright side, he gets to Oxnard in time to check into a motel, take a nap, grab some dinner, and still make it to Fabulous Ladies for the evening’s first show.

A sign out front that can’t be more than a year or two old says ‘Newly Remodeled.’ Xander tucks himself into the corner booth and, after about forty-five minutes and two beers, he has to admit it’s better than he remembered.

Of course that probably has less to do with the new table top and reupholstered bench and more to do with the fact that he’s not up to his elbows in greasy dishes and has long since stopped pretending that he doesn’t appreciate a fine male form.

He takes another sip of his third beer and glances back up at the stage as a pair of snap-down pleather pants fly away from well toned thighs with one sharp tug.

None of the performers from Xander’s dishwashing days are still around, which makes sense since it’s been almost eight years and Fabulous Ladies isn’t exactly known for its fabulous pension plan, but he kinda wishes Josh was still headlining.

Josh used to put on quite the show – a show Xander wouldn’t have minded seeing again, now that he wasn’t standing awkwardly in the kitchen doorway trying to act like he wasn’t watching.

When the new headliner takes the stage an hour later, Xander’s disappointment melts away into the sticky floorboards.

Five minutes of Jared has Xander thinking Josh who? and wishing he had some singles – or hell, even a twenty – in his wallet to stuff down Jared’s g-string.

Still, he leaves before the encore.

The sun’s been down a while now and Xander’s got things to do.
 
 
 
clever comment goes here: misc - seattlemountainanxiety_junkie on April 4th, 2009 07:03 am (UTC)
Oooh, post Chosen Oxnard Spander round robin? *rubs hands gleefully*

Especially if you happened to buy your bargain car in Washington State.

Where air conditioning is considered a frill.


Hey there now! It does get hot here in the summer. Really. I swear. :P
savoy trufflesavoytruffle on April 4th, 2009 07:06 am (UTC)
i'm from washington. and i bought a car there in 2002. and it was a 99 VW new beetle. and it doesn't have air conditioning. and then i moved to memphis for 4 years...

i know of what i speak. ;)
julia_here: 101 Northjulia_here on April 6th, 2009 03:36 pm (UTC)
I concur; my Texan husband and I have a long-termphilosophical disagreement about AC.

Julia, catching up late, per usual
cmk418: BtVS xandercmk418 on April 4th, 2009 02:06 pm (UTC)
Nice beginning. And I love the look you give us at the end of Xander's past at the Fabulous Ladies nightclub. I can't wait to see what's coming.
savoy truffle: spander cigarettesavoytruffle on May 27th, 2009 04:52 am (UTC)
Just as we near the end of the story, I finally start answering comments. Thanks for reading!
Two legs good, four legs okaynothorse on April 4th, 2009 02:27 pm (UTC)
Intriguing so far. Especially when I compare what's been happening here with the summary.
Sounds like we're in for an interesting ride.
savoy truffle: sod offsavoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:16 am (UTC)
finally catching up with comments just as we post the epilogue. thanks!
Kevin Jonesmulder200 on April 4th, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC)
Oh my! That was an interesting beginning. I can't wait for more.
savoy truffle: spandersavoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:16 am (UTC)
finally catching up with comments just as we post the epilogue. sad, i know.

thank you!
keyairreemkeyairreem on April 4th, 2009 05:25 pm (UTC)
Okay where is the rest??????? Please? *Giant sized puppy eyes* Please?
savoy truffle: spander staringsavoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:17 am (UTC)
and now i'm answering the comment just in time to be able to say that the rest is basically posted. except for the epilogue coming tonight.

thanks for reading!
texanfantexanfan on April 4th, 2009 07:53 pm (UTC)
Whole bunch of coincidences adding up to serious destiny points. Always a sign of trouble. :) Intriguing start.
savoy truffle: xander - back!savoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:17 am (UTC)
finally catching up with comments just as we post the epilogue. thanks!
missus_grace: bookspikemissus_grace on April 5th, 2009 06:25 am (UTC)
Wonderful beginning. Xander seems to have a plan, but is also going with the flow. I'm there!
savoy truffle: spander staringsavoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:18 am (UTC)
thanks!

finally catching up with comments just as we post the epilogue. (sad, i know.)
bmblbeebmblbee on April 5th, 2009 08:29 am (UTC)
Great start. Can't wait to see what he's up to.
savoy truffle: big funny xandersavoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:18 am (UTC)
finally catching up with comments just as we post the epilogue. thanks!
kargrif on April 5th, 2009 02:30 pm (UTC)
ohhhh very interesting beginning, you guys know just how to hook me in *g* can't wait to see what happens!
savoy truffle: eye fucksavoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:21 am (UTC)
thanks!

i can't believe i'm finally catching up with comments just as we post the epilogue. *eyeroll*
julia_here: Xander Lightjulia_here on April 6th, 2009 03:37 pm (UTC)
Oh, yeah to the yea yeah.

JUlia, inarticulate but appreciative, eh?
savoy truffle: spandersavoytruffle on June 2nd, 2009 02:22 am (UTC)
hee! thanks.

camisha, finally answering comments when it seems almost ridiculous to even bother
brunettepetbrunettepet on April 6th, 2009 03:47 pm (UTC)
Excellent beginning to this already intriguing story. Xander having the exact amount to fill the gas tank gives a ring of inevitability to this journey. I wonder what these mysterious things to do are.

I loved this description of both the present and the past: A sign out front that can’t be more than a year or two old says ‘Newly Remodeled.’ Xander tucks himself into the corner booth and, after about forty-five minutes and two beers, he has to admit it’s better than he remembered.

Of course that probably has less to do with the new table top and reupholstered bench and more to do with the fact that he’s not up to his elbows in greasy dishes and has long since stopped pretending that he doesn’t appreciate a fine male form.
It's not just the club that's changed in the past eight years.
savoy truffle: eye fucksavoytruffle on June 4th, 2009 03:03 am (UTC)
thank you! 16 chapters later, i finally answer comments and the answers have finally been revealed.
tabaqui: s&xbluelightbyliteratitabaqui on April 6th, 2009 05:15 pm (UTC)
Heeeee!
And why does the old man selling gas, the money, the 'lucky' make me have....thinky thoughts?
:)

I luff!!
*bounce*


Teeny thing:And maybe putting his thumb to wiggling his fingers a bit.
Missing 'his nose' there, i do believe....
savoy truffle: spander cigarettesavoytruffle on June 4th, 2009 03:04 am (UTC)
thank you! and thanks so much for the typo catch. i fixed it as soon as i received the comment, even though its taken me months to actually answer the comment.
doingsoso: I Love FanFicdoingsoso on April 14th, 2009 12:04 am (UTC)
I just found this, LOL.

And it's NOT four years after the fact. Can you believe that?

Oh, and interesting, interesting.

Love the writing, which you know already. *snerk* But if you don't. I love the writing!

And hee, Xander "Josh who?"
savoy truffle: spander staringsavoytruffle on June 4th, 2009 03:05 am (UTC)
thanks so much! sorry i'm so late answering this comment...
shadowscast: spike_neutralshadowscast on May 14th, 2009 02:27 am (UTC)
Mmm, lovely and intriguing first chapter. I like the return to the Fabulus Ladies.
savoy truffle: big funny xandersavoytruffle on June 4th, 2009 03:06 am (UTC)
thank you! fabulous ladies is always fun.
emilygoober: fairyemilygoober on May 30th, 2009 09:34 pm (UTC)
yay! another awesome story from my fave spander authors. i just waited till the end so most of it would be posted, i'm not known for my patience. i just love the narrative voice in here. it's very xander if xander talked about himself in third person. oh wait...

the one-liners are so brilliant too: "The engine kills itself before Xander can."
I'm already suspicious about the "lucky" comment when xan handed over the $33 ... i'm either paranoid or i know you all too well.
And including the Fabulous Ladies was awesome, I love finding different perspectives about xan's time in oxnard. loving this story and this xander already.
savoy truffle: spander cigarettesavoytruffle on June 4th, 2009 03:06 am (UTC)
well, you definitely time things right for not having to wait. thanks for reading!