Disclaimer: I'm not Whedon or Bellesario, so I don't claim to own them.
Fandoms: Buffy the Vampire Slayer; NCIS
Timeline: Post-Chosen for BtVS; Post-Chained for NCIS
Written For: slash_me_twice; Prompt #45 - Reality; Prompt Table Here
Written For: crossovers100; Prompt #7 - Days (present in part 2); Prompt Table Here
Beta Reader: azraelz_angel & writinginct (many thanks!!)
Crossposted: spn_btvs_ncis; ncis_slash; ncisfanfic; slash_me_twice; crossovers100; i_need_a_parrot; xander_slash
Series: The Navy Watcher Series
Summary: After Tony was chained to a killer, both Xander and him had a startling realization they couldn't share with each other.
Xander glanced down at his silent phone and then looked up at the still locked door. The last things Tony had said to him had been playing in his head for the entire evening.
”I’m going undercover. Shouldn’t be out of touch any longer than a day, two at the most.”
That had been two and half days ago and he hadn’t heard a thing. Xander had thought about calling the NCIS headquarters and trying to get in touch with Abby, but had discarded that route for the moment. He didn’t want to distract anyone from work that might prove crucial to Tony’s assignment.
He had thought that perhaps it would have been better had he known exactly what Tony was doing. But it was part of their unspoken living arrangement; Tony didn’t talk about his work and Xander did the same.
“Maybe it’s time to actually talk about that,” Xander huffed out to the empty apartment. He picked up his phone again and stared at it, willing it to ring. Then almost flung it across the room when the Charlie Brown theme song started playing.
He flipped the phone open without checking the caller ID and shouted into the speaker. “Tony! You okay man?”
“I’m okay, but I’m definitely not Tony. Unless Willow was playing with the magic and somehow made me change genders without my knowledge,” a familiar female voice answered back.
“Dawnie? What’s the what?” Xander tried to cover up the concern and disappointment in his voice that she wasn’t Tony.
“It’s Wednesday, Xander. You know, that day we call the Mouseketeer Roll Call Day. It was my turn to call you for the check in. Did something happen with Tony?”
“No. Yes. I don’t know,” Xander finally ended. “He went on an undercover assignment and hasn’t called or made it back home yet.”
“Oh,” Dawn said quietly on the other end. “How long has he been gone?”
“Been two and a half days, but he was only suppose to be gone one, two at the most.”
“A half a day isn’t anything to be worried about Xander,” Dawn said slowly. “He’s probably taking care of all that government paperwork that we pay our tax dollars to fund.”
“Would you worry if Buffy was missing for half a day?” Xander questioned back before he had time to sensor his mouth.
“Of course I would, but-- Wait a minute,” her voice allowed Xander to picture her with her hand held in the stop motion. “You’re showing more concern for your roommate than a roommate should show. What’s really up Xander?”
“Is there some scale for judging this that I don’t know about? Nothing’s up Dawn. I’m just worried cause he is out doing some kind of dangerous Navy police thing and I can’t help him because there aren’t any demons involved. It’s just humans and that scares me.”
“Don’t try to change the topic on me Xander Harris or I’ll get Willow on the other line. There’s something going on between you two, isn’t there?”
Xander’s heart skipped a beat as he shuffled the thought that Dawn’s question generated to the back of his mind with the hyena possession. “There’s nothing going on between us. Actually, there is no us. There’s a Tony and there’s a me, but no us.”
Xander thought he heard a snort on the other end of the line, so he continued on in his denial. “I’m not gay, even if I did ask Willow that one time to gay me up. And even if I was gay, Tony’s not gay. The ex-girlfriend from hell was proof enough of that. So see, there can’t be a ‘something’ going on between us. Nope, nada, zip, zilch-- Tony!"
Dawn started laughing on the other end of the line. “See! You are so wrapped up in him that you use his name when denying you like him.”
Xander was staring at a haggard looking Tony who was in the doorway. “Dawn, I’ll call you back later,” he said quickly as he snapped the phone shut. “Hey,” he greeted Tony with nervousness from being unaware of how much the other man had heard him say.
“Hey,” Tony said quietly. “Guess that’s why I couldn’t reach you on the phone. Don’t you have call waiting?”
Xander glanced down at the closed phone, “Probably, but the real question is, do I know how it works?”
“You sound just as bad as Gibbs. How did you get to be friends with a girl who can hack her way into government computers?”
“A yellow crayon,” Xander said with a smile. “You okay?” Xander asked as he went to the fridge and pulled out two beers.
Tony took the offered drink and made his way to the couch. “I’ve had worse, but I wouldn’t want to repeat it anytime soon.”
Xander didn’t want to press any farther as it was sort of taboo between the two of them to talk about work. “I’ve had days like that. Of course at the end of them I can always be glad that the world still exists even if I feel like crap.”
Tony snorted slightly. “Well, at the end of mine Iraq gets their stolen antiquities back so they can eventually be stolen again. I think you get the better sense of satisfaction.”
“Maybe,” Xander said lightly as they fell into their usual patterns of talking. “So that’s what you were doing? Recovering stolen goods?”
“Yeah, though looking back I wish we could have found a different way to do it. Had to shoot a guy,” Tony added quietly as he downed the last of his beer.
“Sorry,” Xander said just as quietly. Unsure how much comfort he should try to show, he decided to change the topic. “You know, you shouldn’t use the ‘w’ word in a sentence. It can lead to all kinds of badness.”
“The ‘w’ word?” Tony asked with interest.
“Yeah. Wish,” Xander supplied. “Remember me telling you about Anya?”
“The girl you left at the altar?”
“Yeah,” Xander said as he settled back into the couch and recalled Anya’s face. “She was a demon in bed. Use to do this thing with her tongue, and you don’t need to know about that.”
Tony settled against the opposite arm of the couch with a smile. Talking with Xander was even better than his time with Abby in the lab.
“She wasn’t always human. She was a vengeance demon before we started dating. She was actually over a thousand years old. Made robbing the cradle take on a whole new meaning.”
“A vengeance demon?” Tony questioned, letting the age part slide for the moment. “What did she seek vengeance for?”
“Scorned women,” Xander answered and then he turned to face Tony. “I’m surprised you haven’t met one before now.”
Tony gave a short laugh. “So you left a former demon who use to punish men who scorned women at the alter? You’re either incredibly stupid or have the largest set of balls I know of.”
“There were some extenuating circumstances at the time, but yeah, I was stupid.”
“It’s okay. I know all about extenuating circumstances. It’s the reason I left Philly. So, what you got planned for the night?”
Xander glanced at the clock on the far wall. “I’m supposed to meet up with Stephanie and Jill at Rock Creek Cemetery in an hour. Had some activity out that way recently. You?”
“Gotta go back to the office and finish off my reports. Gibbs would probably headslap me into next week if I don’t have them on his desk by tomorrow morning.”
“You okay to drive back?” Xander asked with a bit of concern at the exhaustion he could still see present in Tony. Mix that with the beer, and Xander felt justified in asking.
“One beer’s not going to knock me on my ass Xander,” Tony said in an exasperated tone. “I’ll be okay,” he added to convince both Xander and himself.
“You better be,” Xander said in a mock stern voice. “Cause you know Gibbs will blame me if something happens to you and I so do not want to deal with an angry Gibbs.”
Tony laughed as he grabbed stood to grab his jacket. “An angry Gibbs is nothing. You should see him without his coffee. I think that actually score on that apocalypse scale of yours.”
“I’ll keep that in mind,” Xander said as he followed Tony to the door. “Thanks for letting me know you’re okay,” he said quietly as Tony walked into the hallway.
“Thanks for worrying,” Tony responded back with a smile just as Xander shut the door.
Do you like Xander and Tony together and are eligible to vote in the TTH Crossing Over Awards? If so, go vote for Taste the Rainbow for Best Pairing (Same Sex) in the COA.