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More Relaxing Stress.

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More Relaxing Stress.

One of the girls at the slayer house opened a door, staring at the petite blonde woman on the other side. "Yes, miss? Is there a problem a slayer can help you with?"

"I came to meet my brother's girlfriend," she said with an obvious accent the slayer recognized, taking off her sunglasses. "Are you her?"

"No, Kara's school shopping with your brother," Xander said as he stopped behind his slayer. "Though you're welcome to come in, miss. We're not evil."

She smirked. "I have heard. Not from my brother however." She stepped in.

Xander looked at the runes over the doorway that lit up. "Oh, you're a magic user. That's cool." He walked off. "You can ask the other girls about Kara while you wait in the living room. I'll text Kara and Piotr."

"Thank you." She stared after him, looking confused.

The slayer grinned. "That's Xander. He's our head of the house and the guy who does half of everything. He's supposed to be resting before his sniffles become a full blown chest cold again," she called.

"I quit sneezing last night," he called from the kitchen. "Quit nagging."

"You took the medicine we forced on you, it didn't end your cold," she shot back. She smiled at the young woman. "Living room?" She nodded with her head and they went in there. She sent Kara a text message. Then to one of the other girls. "In case Kara has her phone off. Sometimes she turns it off when she and Piotr sneak off to the movies together." She smiled at the other girl. "He's a really sweet guy. He's helped us a lot.

"Xander lets him go on patrol with us when he wants to. He went to England with us to help us with the old building's cleaning up. Piotr's *such* a sweetie. He helped when we were threatened and had to evacuate. He's just a really nice guy." She grinned. "A lot of girls are using them as the posters for future relationships. Them and Penny. Xander, isn't Penny due soon?" she called.

He walked in a tea pot and put it onto the table with two mugs. "She's due next week so it's coming any time now. She already alerted the hospital that we'd be there with protection for her plus some magical protections in case. They're coming back here for a week after the birth so Brad's not alone with the baby while she heals. And so you guys can see how much work a baby is so you don't want any of your own."

He grinned as he walked off. Someone knocked so he opened the door, smiling at the young girl on the other side. She was a teen, with really short hair, and had on a trench coat over her official uniform. "If you're looking for Kara, they're shopping for the girls. That way you could have clothes that aren't official things." He pulled her inside. "Piotr's sister is here if you wanted to meet her."

She blinked a few times. "He has a sister?"

"He does not mention me to protect me," she called from the living room. She came out, smiling at the girl her own age. "I'm Illyana."

"I'm TNW to most of the house," she said, shaking her hand. "I'm on Piotr's team at the moment and, Xander, can the girls help me with girl thoughts I'm having?"

"Of course." He grinned. "All girls have them. Did a girl flirt?" She nodded, blushing some. "That's sweet. Do you like her?"

"I have no clue."

"Okay. Want to talk about it? I've had a talk with most of girls here."

"I'd....that's kinda weird."

"I know but I'm a big brother sort." He smiled. "If you want I can threaten her like a proper big brother too."

"I might let you. Piotr goes all scowly and he'd scare the girl off."

One of the girls ran into the house and pounced Xander. "I have blue stuff this year!"

"Congrats. I know that's your present favorite color." He cuddled her. "This is Ilyana, Piotr's sister. Are the bigger slayers here?"

"Mercy drove me back. She's getting a milkshake and she'll be right back." She hopped down, pulling out her new dress to show him. "It's pretty."

"It's very pretty," he agreed, smiling at her. "Is that what you're wearing on the first day of school?" She nodded. "Cool. We'll make sure you have enough hangers later and take some of the older, non-fitting stuff to the thrift store for you."

"Cool!" she squealed, running upstairs with her bags. "Come help me, TNW!"

"I can do that. I can hang up clothes really good. A lot of us have horrible laundry habits around the mutant school." She went up there to help the bouncy little one.

Xander grinned. "She's second-youngest in the house," he said quietly. "Miffy's sniffly but bouncy and getting new shoes today." Ilyana smiled at him. "That one's mom's on a ship in the middle of the ocean so we're watching her." He walked off. "Go have tea, ladies. If I know the others, they'll be here soon. I'm working on snacks so they don't starve until dinner in three hours."

The mini looked at Illyana, smiling at her. "We do eat like there's never going to be food again. Slayers have higher metabolisms so we eat like teenage boys all the time." They went back to the living room. "Let me warn the other girls to give you some space with Kara and Piotr. That way we're not being all nosy asses and things."

"It's fine. I will not be mean to him."

She smiled. "Of course you won't but it's an important point where you give the shovel speech."

"Shovel speech?"

"If you hurt my brother/friend/someone I care about, I'll beat you to death with a shovel," she said with a grin. "Though Xander promised a few he'd use a steam roller and one he'd use artillery on them. But Penny's really happy with Brad so he won't have to blow him up." Illyana looked amused. She grinned back. "It's an important moment." Kara strolled in. "TNW is upstairs needing girl talk time and this is Illyana, Piotr's sister."

"He has your picture in his room. He told me a little bit about you," she said with a smile, holding out a hand.

"He hasn't told me about you at all," she said, shaking her hand with a smile. "We should correct that."

"Sure. Thanks, Tiny."

"Welcome, Kara." She ran off. Then came back. "Xander made tea and he's making snacks." She ran off again.

Kara sat down, smiling at her. "She's bouncy when she's happy."

"It's good to see happy children," Illyana said. Her brother walked in and she stood up, scowling at him. "You did not tell me about you finding someone nice. I had to find out from others. Am I not your sister?" she demanded in Russian.

He smiled and hugged her. "I was waiting to make sure it was more than friendship." He looked down at her. "I have missed you, sister."

"I've missed you too, Piotr." She got free. "Sit, talk with me. I want to get to know this young woman you find fascinating so I can make sure she's worthy of you."

"Of course she is," Piotr said with a smile, sitting with Kara, one arm around her shoulders. "She is very special in her own right."

"Good. You need someone exceptional." She looked at Kara. "I hope you are to him?"

"I hope I am to him too," she agreed.

Illyana smiled. "Good. Let's get to know you. That way I can tell the family."

Kara looked up at Piotr. "You never told me you have parents that're still alive. I would've helped you write them letters if you wanted."

He shook his head. "A few cousins," he said.

"That sucks but I understand." She patted his free hand. "I have an aunt somewhere but she hates me being a slayer."

He kissed her on the temple. "I have seen her pictures and you told me you two don't talk."

"I send her a holiday card every year so she knows I'm still alive. I could understand her worries but it sucks."

"It does," he agreed. He stroked over her hair. "If we do something lasting and legal, we will not do more than send her an announcement." Kara smiled, leaning on his side. He looked at his staring sister. "How fares your schooling?"

"Boring mostly. Classes can be that way." He nodded. "Are you in college yet?"

"Yes. I started last semester." He grinned. "I have much fun in art class. My sculpture teacher is most impressed with how I can carve."

She rolled her eyes. "Beyond the muscles," she said dryly.

"He's been in the student art show already," Kara told her. "Two different paintings last year and a small sculpture this semester's upcoming show."

"That's wonderful." She smiled at her brother. "You need more things that make you happy, brother."

"I am quite happy most of the time. Even when the patrols do get slime on me." Kara giggled, poking him on the side. "That slimey puppy was weird."

"They're harmless and the girls consider them cute," she told him. "Hannah's nearly brought a few home with her."

"Hannah does like animals," he agreed. "Even strange ones. She should work at a zoo."

"She might. She was thinking about vet school but she's not sure she can handle the bad parts." She smiled at Illyana. "Hannah's another slayer and she's very into animals. She calls them critters. There's always petting times. She goes to a few demon clubs to pet some of them that let her."

"Aww. That's nice of her."

"She's one of the sweeter slayers," Kara agreed.

"What are you going to college for?"

Kara smiled. "I'm in my last semester of high school actually. Thanks to the problems in Sunnydale I had to miss about four months so I'm making it up now." Illyana nodded at that. "Then I'm going to Columbia for ...not real sure yet. Maybe business stuff. I haven't decided what I want to do after I quit patrolling." She looked at Piotr. "Business stuff is boring but safe and I'm okay with it or I could go for something like psychology to help a lot of the girls and others like some of your teammates."

"That could help. Emma does the same job, kind of. You could ask to speak to her about what the job entails."

"I can do that the next time I run into her at the house. Though I'm hoping she's more dressed." She blushed a bit but cleared her throat to make it go away. "She proved to me I'm not bi."

He laughed and hugged her. "She does it to many." He smiled at his sister. "You have met Miss Frost, right?"

"I have," she agreed. "That's how I realized I didn't like women as well. She's pretty but boys are nicer. Though not at my age." He smirked at her. "No, I am not dating. I have things I need to do before I find a man to interrupt my education."

Kara nodded. "We started out as email penpals. Then met after a battle to talk in person. We clicked and it's been great. We've had roller blading dates and all sorts of fun things. I'd never let someone hurt your brother."

"Good," Illyana said. "Relax, Kara. I am not jealous my brother is dating a beautiful woman. Though I wish he had told me himself so I did not hear it from gossiping girls."

"I will talk to Jean about that," he said dryly.

She smiled. "That would be adored." She smiled at Kara. "We will get to know you. I find you nice enough for my brother. Unless something happens and then I will destroy you as only a magic user can."

Kara grinned. "I'd never mess with magic. We have to work with the Devon coven a lot. I know what it can do, especially after watching Rosenburg mess up repeatedly."

"She's still a mule," another female voice called. "Thankfully."

Xander came to the doorway. "Penny, why are you out of the house? You're too far along and it's not safe."

"Shut up!"

He grinned. "Don't make me start to carry you around, young lady. I will just so you don't name the kid after me."

She snorted, shaking her head. "Brad said we can't because Rosenburg might become sniffly and curse the kid to be like you," she shot back. He hugged her. "I was looking for Brad."

"He's not hiding from a mood swing here."

"Shit." She sighed, leaning on his arm.

"How far apart?" he asked, looking at her stomach.

"Not time to go to the hospital yet and he's *somewhere*," she said with a hand wave once she could breathe again.

"Great." He pulled out his phone to call someone. "Deadpool, Xander. Brad's missing and Penny's just started into labor. She's got a few hours before she hits the hospital but we need him found now." He listened. "Thanks, man. Yeah, probably two hours before she gets close enough to head to the hospital." He hung up. "He'll find Brad. He knows more places to hide than I do." He got her sitting down in the living room. "Sorry to interrupt but she needs to put her feet up before they swell again." He went upstairs. "Ladies, Penny's going to hit the hospital tonight probably," he announced. They all squealed and went to pat her stomach and talk to her.

Penny looked at one. "I'm not taping it so you can see how it goes. There's plenty on youtube. Brad found a ton when he wanted to know about the different ways you could give birth." The girls hugged her and a few of the tiny ones kissed her stomach then ran off saying they'd see her after the baby was born. Penny shook her head, staring at Kara. "Some day you'll have this."

"Sorry, no eggs. So unless we get a donor one to put into me, not likely. We can adopt though. There's a ton of orphans with the minis and the baby mutants."

Penny smiled. "I think that's a great thing."

"And if he wants a kid some day," she told Piotr's sister. "We can talk about how some day. I'd never keep him from that."

She smiled, waving a hand. "I'll accept any children between you however as my nieces and nephews." Her brother beamed at her. "Adoption is honorable. It's good for the community as well." Kara nodded. "Have you met his teammates?"

"Many times," Piotr said. "We have had dinner at the school many times."

"The Professor hated that I'm not a mutant," Kara said. "But I think I've changed his mind partially. He still hates that we're slayers but he's mellowed enough to quit trying to make Xander break us up. Especially after he tried to charm Xander's mind during a meeting and met his hyena possession. Apparently they didn't get along." Penny giggled, holding her stomach. She looked up at her boyfriend then at Illyana. "We can go out to the school tonight. I don't mind spending the night on his couch."

"You two are not intimate?" she asked.

"Yeah but I won't do that in front of you," Kara said dryly with a smirk. "I am not the slayer that likes public sex or in front of people watching us." Illyana and Penny were both giggling now. "Penny, I can hear Xander carrying heavy stuff so apparently he's weaponing up for your hospital room." She kissed her on the cheek. "Happy birth, dear, and I hope it's an easy one. Have someone send us pictures." She nodded. She hauled Piotr up. "Let me go freshen up." She ran upstairs to go to the bathroom, brush her hair and teeth, and change shirts.

Illyana looked up at her brother. "I find her sweet." He smiled and nodded. "Plus a bit strong so she can stand up to your stubborn side."

"She has," he agreed. "Including when Jean made me think about our future children being mutants."

She patted him on the arm. "If so it would be a good family. If you adopt, that's good too." He nodded, smiling at her. "Good." She smiled at Penny. "I hope it's easy for you. I've seen a woman in labor on our farm and it was loud." She left with her brother, leaning on his arm. Kara came jogging down the stairs. "We would've waited while you buttoned your shirt."

She looked at herself then groaned and went upstairs. "Let me change into a shirt that won't come apart when I breathe. I forgot this shirt has that button problem." She hurried in to change into a simpler t-shirt and an overshirt. "There." She came jogging back down the stairs, leaning into the living room. "I'll tell Mercy she's in charge tonight." Penny panted through the pain but nodded. "Xander, she's seriously having pains now."

He came in to squat in front of Penny, rubbing her stomach. "You're closer than you think," he said. He stood up. "Mercy, you're in charge," he called. No answer. He called her. "Penny's in labor, you're in charge. Kara's heading off with Piotr and his sister. We've got a few here." He listened. "Cool. Yeah, we can last ten minutes. We've still gotta find Brad anyway." He hung up and grinned at her. "Your go bag?" he asked quietly.

She sighed as she came down. "My closet."

"I'll have someone grab it and your iPod." He looked out as Mercy came running in with the other girls in the house. "Behave, I'll be back tomorrow. Call every few hours to check in," he told Mercy, who nodded, hugging Penny. "Okay. Ladies, be good tonight please. No going wild or going out. Penny's delivering soon. I'm going to guard her and the baby." They all nodded. "So just chill out and netflix or whatever." He helped Penny up. Her knees buckled so he picked her up to carry her to his car. The girls waved at them with a chorus of 'good luck's. Xander drove her to the proper hospital and smiled as he got out, grabbing a waiting wheelchair. He helped her into it once the new labor pain had stopped. She had three on the drive over. "Here we go." He walked her inside to the check in desk. "Slayer Penny here to deliver. Her water's not broken yet but's she's having pains about four minutes apart and the baby's down pretty far."

The nurse stared at him. "Yours, sir?"

"No, I'm the head of the local slayer house and her guard. We're trying to find her husband right now. But I delivered three slayer babies in Africa."

"That's sweet of you." She found the right paperwork and got a Labor nurse down to check on Penny, who was having another contraction when she got there.

"This one was three-forty-five apart," he told the nurse. "The baby's down but her water hasn't broken yet. The baby's not breech that she knows of but it's definitely in position." The nurse stared at him. He grinned. "I've delivered three for some of my other slayers."

"Oh. All right. That's a good thing." She got Penny into a room to check over, nodding. "You're going tonight, dear. Is there anyone you have to notify?"

"People are looking for my husband and Xander's here to guard the baby."

"And you," Xander said dryly from the other side of the curtain. "You're more important to us than the baby. We've known you for years so I prioritize you over that little tadpole in there."

Penny sniffled. "That's sweet, Xander." He came in to hug her. "Thank you."

"It's the truth." He pushed her hair back then pulled her hair back for her. "That'll help with the sweating. Mya's big sister sweated through her two days of labor." Penny shuddered. "Yeah, and she didn't even have painkillers," he said with a grin. "She only had ladies who had babies there to talk her down."

"I like hospitals," she said, smiling at the nurse.

"So do we, dear." She patted her on the foot. "Let's get you upstairs. I noticed on your form you're going to have some protections on the room?"

"This is Slayer Penny," Xander said with a grin. "She's the first pregnant slayer in the US since the mass calling."

"Ah. So we're going to be very uptight. We do have a few half-demon nurses."

"They're intent based," Xander said. "Shouldn't be a problem. I actually know a few of the nurses that work in this hospital. I play poker with one's husband."

"That's good then." She got Penny admitted and upstairs with the overprotective boob that was guarding her.

Penny stole Xander's phone, calling someone. "Weasel, it's Penny. I'm in the hospital. They're saying I'm going to pop within a few hours probably, and I left my bag at home. Can you tell Brad when they find him? Xander called Wade. Thank you, sweetie." She moaned.

Xander took the phone. "I called him about an hour ago," he said quietly, letting her break his hand. "Thanks, man. I'll let you know when it's out and they're safe." He hung up and called Tara's phone. "It's me. Penny's in labor and in the hospital." He hung up.

Tara appeared, hugging Penny. "I'm here to help. I'll never have one of my own so I'm going to vicariously live through yours." She grinned. "And I'm going to ward your room for you." She did that on some masking tape. She smiled at a half-demon nurse. "Penny's delivering."

"That's fine, Lady Tara. We know we'd never hurt her and you're fair that way."

Xander leaned out to wave. "Tell Helda I said hi."

"I can do that tomorrow when she comes in, Knight." He grinned. "She need anything?"

"Could use something to drink probably." She nodded, getting him some ice chips. "Here we go, Penny. Ice chips. Not yummy but helpful." He spooned some into her mouth since she was panting again.

Tara finished the warding around the room and came back to help her with her meditational thoughts to help control the pain. Unfortunately the pain killers wouldn't last long enough while she was in labor.


Kara walked into the house first. She smiled back at Piotr and Illyana talking. She smiled at Scott. "Someone wrote his sister."

"Aww." He looked out there. "Hi," he called with a wave.

"We'll be in soon," she said.

"That's fine," Scott agreed. He smiled at Kara. "What else is going on?"

"Penny's in labor."

He looked up. "LOGAN!" He came out of the tv room doing up his shirt. "Penny's in labor."

"Xander took her to the hospital when we left," Kara said, hugging his arm with a grin. "He's not even twittering or bouncy."

"He's probably seen a few born," he agreed. "We can make sure the city stays quiet tonight." He opened the door and stared for a second. "Hey, Illyana."

"Logan," she said, smiling at him.

"Figures that he needed to introduce you two."

"Jean wrote me. Piotr hadn't yet," she said dryly. "So I had to meet my brother's beloved."

He smirked at her. "They're cute together, kiddo. Really cute together."

"Good," Illyana said. "My brother deserves the best."

Kara laughed. "I try but I'm not nearly as saintly as some are." She saw someone in the hall. "Miss Frost, can I have a moment please?" she asked.

"Of course," she said. She blinked at her, reading her surface thoughts. She had quite the unusual mind. "What's wrong, dear?"

"I wanted to ask you about what a certain career path might contain. Right now I'm torn between safe and simple business stuff or possibly being a therapist or social worker for the community."

"Are you a mutant?"

"No, I'm a slayer. I'm Slayer Kara, Piotr's girlfriend." She smiled.

"Oh, I've heard of you from Charles."

She smirked a tiny bit. "I know he doesn't fully appreciate me for not being a mutant. I love Piotr in spite of having mentors who think I'm not good enough for him."

Emma Frost stared at her. "He doesn't think that."

Kara held up a hand. "He does because he tried to mind screw Xander during a meeting to break us up right after we got together," she said dryly. Emma frowned. "I know very well he doesn't understand my calling, and neither do I sometimes, but I do adore that man of mine."

"So you're going to work with mutants because of him?"

"No. I'm going to work with mutants and demons because they need people who want to work with them. Some day I hope we can adopt some of them that need it."

"That's sweet, dear." She stared at her. "Being a regular therapist isn't hard but like being a social worker it will get emotionally tiring. Sometimes you can't help but internalize the strain and sadness."

Kara nodded. "I was a bit worried about that. Especially about the abuse issues that seem to happen." Emma was full on scowling now. "Miss Frost, one of the slayers in the local house is now an orphan after her father killed her mother and tried to auction her off to the highest bidder," she said quietly. "It's not uncommon. We've seen it in the demon community and among a lot of the homeless mutant children that we all help out. Most of the slayers in the local house go to mentor at the orphanage and some of us tutor at the mixed school some of us go to. I've worked with the kids that needed my help for years, even before I was patrolling. I've seen some horrifying things. I'd like to make sure it doesn't happen again."

Emma Frost nodded, smiling at her. "That is a good reason to do that sort of work. Being a social worker means you have to sometimes give up because the system demands it of you."

"Or I could work in like the orphanage?"

"That's possible," she agreed. "Much more sane too. Many social workers burn out after a few years then go to that sort of position."

Kara nodded. "I'm sure I'll have that too. One of my buddies is a minor TK but she's presently in the hospital for cancer and we had to fight the hospital to get her in."

Emma winced but nodded. "We have seen that. The healers?"

"Couldn't do more than remove the lump. They're not allowed to give higher level meds like chemo." She shrugged. "It's a sucky situation I'd like to someday fix."

"Be a social worker, dear. It'll break your heart in many ways but that will let you help that situation more."

She smiled. "Thank you for the help." She looked out there then sighed. "His sister got written to by someone here. Piotr hadn't told her yet."

"Are you two a new couple?" she asked.

"No, we've been dating for over a year now. He hasn't written her in four months. That came up in the car." She grinned. "We're waiting on news of the first baby born to the slayers sometime tonight. So we're wearing out each other's stresses."

"That's always fun," Emma Frost said with a smile.

"Not that way. I'm not the slayer that's into public displays of sex. Affection, mild PDA, but not sex. I was taught that was rude and inviting others to help." She shrugged.

Emma nodded. "It can be seen that way, yes."

"Why is there owl mail suddenly?" a male voice called.

"It's probably a member of the coven," Kara called back. "We're waiting on Penny's kid to be born tonight."

The guy brought in the letter. "It's not to you."

She looked then pointed. "To Illyana, Piotr's sister."

"Cool." He brought it out there, handing it to Piotr with a smile for her. "Owl mail suddenly." He hurried back inside.

He looked at it then handed it to her. "One of the younger ladies in the Devon coven." He walked her inside. "Kara, any news yet?"

"Not yet but youtube videos say that labor can last for hours." She shrugged. "We'll hear. You know Xander will send out a mass text. Tara's probably helping."

"Probably. She is a nice witch," he agreed. "A very sweet young woman. Emma." He smiled and shook her hand. "Have you met my sister yet?"

"I had not. Emma Frost," she said, shaking her hand.

"Illyana Rasputin," she said. "I had to come check on my big brother."

"Men often need checked on," she said with a wink. "Piotr, I didn't know you were dating."

"Yes, I have been," he said, putting an arm around Kara's shoulders. "For over a year now."

She looked up. "Our anniversary was last month."

"A few days before the first of that month," he corrected with a smile. She elbowed him but grinned back. He grinned at Emma. "Kara and I are very good together."

"That's good. You deserve someone nice." She smiled at Illyana. "I'm sure some day you'll have someone nice too."

"That would be nice," she agreed.

"If there were more guys around the Council I'd introduce you," Kara said. "But most of the older slayers no longer have families and the younger ones are just too young." She shrugged a bit. "We'd really love to beat the shit out of the First Evil's minions for that killing off."

Illyana looked at her. "They did?"

"Yeah, they did. Few years back. That's why we had the mass calling. To beat her." She grimaced. "It totally sucked. Even more than LA did."

Emma shuddered. "Kara, do you have shields?" she asked politely.

"Sorry, they only work really well for deeper thoughts. Somehow I created an upper, minor thought shield instead. I've been working on it but most of the slayers have those instead. I'll try to keep my brain to myself. I know it's rude and I try really hard."

"It's all right. Maybe we can find a way to fix that. It's nice but I just saw a huge cavern full of things."

"Yeah, we had to go into the hellmouth in Sunnydale to beat the super vamp minions and the First Evil. Nastiest battle ever," she said bluntly. "I'm sorry you had to see that, Miss Frost."

"It's all right. Do you ...have you worked over the PTSD?"

Kara smiled, snorting a tiny bit. "Miss Frost, slayers all have therapists on speed dial if we want one. When we rebuilt the Council we made sure we had support that we needed. Especially since we have huge battles every few months."

Logan came in, nodding. "Not this week thankfully."

She looked back at him. "Next big one is in LA in six weeks. Detroit in four months, then New York again." He winced. "Not sure how Detroit's going to go. They really have a lot of haters up there. Buffy warned them personally by going there and barely made it out of Detroit thanks to a gang issue." She shrugged. "We'll figure it out sometime before the battle. We always do."

He nodded. "We do the same thing," he agreed. He looked at Piotr, who was staring down at his girlfriend. "Should we plan for help from our teams?" Logan asked her with a grin.

"Detroit, no. It'll be beheading a lot of higher level, large demons. We're hoping for artillery for that. LA's...is going to be less than the invasion but more than the last one out there. New York's.... two visions, both sucky so far. Xander's version saw the aftermath in the ER full of us and everyone else. So we're thinking it's going to be about as big as the Chitauri thing."

Logan nodded. "Let us know when you know."

"I can do that. Oh, Dawn sent up a warning. Rosenburg did strike again," she said bluntly in Latin. He shuddered. "By somehow locking part of that big, purple guy with some of Dawn's heart's blood so if she dies we're boned when he shows up."

Logan translated that, wincing. "Does Dawn have guards?"

"Yeah. She's at U Conn. She's found a few nice friends up there and the college is aware she's Buffy's sister. An agent tried to get her to get to her sister. The officers were really nice when they asked Dawn to quit stomping on him."

Logan laughed. "She's spunky."

"Dawn? Yeah. And she gives all the minis their sex talks. No one else manages it and if Buffy did it they'd date vampires too."

Logan snorted but nodded. "Probably true, yeah. Okay, we'll keep an ear out for someone to take Dawn."

She waved a hand. "Dawn as a teenager was the most kidnaped being on the face of the earth. Dawn as a college kid is a lot safer but now and then one of Xander's dates kidnaps her to check on Xander. She doesn't discourage them because they feed her real food."

Logan nodded once, walking off. "That's a good thing. A team and Summers, we're heading into the city in an hour," he called. "Slayer Penny's in labor and we want to keep things quiet tonight." They all nodded.

"I'll call the hippy vampire movement so they know not to act up tonight," Kara said, calling someone at a bar. "It's Slayer Kara," she said in greeting. "Tonight is not the night to cause stress for us. Penny's in labor. Xander's tense and guarding her. And if someone hasn't found Brad please send him there. No, Tara's probably helping guard her just in case. Yeah, we're at that level of stress. Just below finals but most of the girls are hiding in case it's a bad attack tonight so we're rested for it. Thanks, Borying. Let the others know so no one has a huge night? Including the vampire hippies?

"Yes, the self actualization movement. Is that what they're going by now?" She snorted. "Xander told us about Harmony. He went to high school with her. She was one of Cordelia's sheep cheerleaders apparently." She grinned. "Thanks, man. No, I'm with Piotr and his sister is just in so we're talking and getting to know each other. Let me know personally if I have to rush back. Thanks. Safe, uneventful night, man." She hung up. "Logan, the demon bartender at the Stake and Flail will pass that along so they're quiet tonight."

"That'll help. I can't believe those vampires, still." He walked off. "Summers, get in the suit," he called.

"Go in normal clothes," Kara called. "If you show up in action suits you'll panic people, Logan."

"Fine." They went to gather for a quick briefing and snack then headed into the city for the night.

Illyana looked at her. "Will things happen?"

"Penny can't protect herself right now. Xander's occupied protecting her. It's a huge opportunity if someone wants to take it. Though if they pull Xander from the ER, he's going to turn into the greatest evil ever. Him and his special axe from Asgard." She nodded slightly. "There's no way Xander's going to let anything hurt the baby or Penny. He's the prototype for overprotective boob over us girls when we need him to be. We adore that he's protective most of the time. Until he scares away potential boyfriends who aren't good enough for us. But that's why he's our big brother," she finished with a wry grin.

Piotr nodded. "I have met a few boyfriends for the girls too. They are not all that happy to be bad to them afterward."

"Which was the point," Kara quipped.

"True," he agreed. He smiled at Emma. "He is a proper big brother to the slayers." Kara nodded.

Emma shook her head. "Does he prevent the girls from dating?"

"No, just from dating shitheads," Kara told her with a grin. "Xander seems to know which guys are going to be dicks to us and fixes it." She looked up. "I don't usually swear that way." The spell ended. "Thanks." Illyana was looking up scowling. "One of the local coven," she said dryly. "She thinks that mutants are weird and me dating one is weirder than ever. She's fourteen. I let one of the minis about her own age have a talk with her after school one day." She grinned. "She was happy because all the girls look up to Piotr about what a boyfriend should be. Him and Brad."

"You are the most exceptional being," Emma said dryly. "You're not exactly a teenager."

"I am, I'm just also a slayer that chose to go on patrol," she said dryly. "Not that we're doing patrol right now thanks to the idiots."

Piotr patted her on the back. "Many have went to spare Xander," he said quietly.

She looked up at him. "That's my job. I need to do my job. We just need to deal with the idiots with plots first so I can get back to doing my job."

"At least you can still club hunt."

She smiled, pulling his head down to kiss him. "Thank you, dear." He grinned. "Does that mean you want to help me club hunt?"

"I would appreciate that. I do not like you going out alone."

"Usually we girls go in a pack."

"Hmm, which draws the wrong minded males as well as vampires," he said dryly. "I would not like you to have to deal with them as well."

She winked at him. "We sic Xander on those sort. Half the time he's with us." He laughed but cuddled her. "We can go clubbing tomorrow." He nodded. She looked at Illyana. "You can come with us. I'll keep any vampy vamps off you."

"Thank you." She smiled. "I have never clubbed."

"We slayers club hunt in this city. Doing a cemetery patrol is pretty pointless with how huge the cemeteries are." She grimaced. "Xander still does some of those but we talk to the ME's and then club hunt."

"I'll gladly go with you two and not hunt." Kara squealed and hugged her. Illyana blinked a few times but hugged back. "You are most unusual."

"Yes but I like that about her," Piotr said dryly. He took his girlfriend back and they went into the kitchen to get dinner. There was always leftovers and stuff cooking. Kara found what she needed to make salads to go with the leftover baked chicken.

Emma came in to join them to get to know Kara as well. She hadn't met girls like her before. After dinner, she went to see Professor Xavier. "Charles." She walked into his study and closed the door, scanning him.

"That is not polite, Emma."

"No but the girl nailed it. You hate her for her calling." He scowled at her. She stared back. "I find her refreshing and honestly a nice young lady. Piotr found himself a keeper. Even if for some reason all the slayers have weird shields instead of the usual ones." She sat down, staring at him. "So why do you hate her for her calling?"

"I do not."

"You're lying to yourself, Charles. Let's not play that game," she said dryly.

"She has no idea the problems we face."

"You mean like the massing of groups to take all the slayers out?" she asked dryly. He winced. "The fact they all had to go into hiding to protect themselves a few times in a year?" He scowled again, going back to his paperwork. "It will not break them up. Even mind control probably won't stop them for long. Their adoration for each other is the sort that will break any programming for the other." He glared at her. She stared back. "I doubt even Erik could find something wrong with them being together."

"I doubt he'd like a mutant dating a normal human."

"She's not normal. The calling has warped her in various ways." She stood up. "I didn't even have to read her deeply. She knows you've tried to break them up and had Jean write his sister. Plus had Jean talk to Piotr about his future children and how that'd be weird for them and her to have mutant kids." She strolled out. She could feel the love from those two. It was refreshing for a world weary woman as she was.

Charles Xavier huffed but got back to his paperwork. He'd hold in his opinion on the matter until those two fell apart. Things like that happened to mutants.


Slayer Lara walked into the mercenary bar the girls didn't usually go to. There he was. She kicked Brad's stool out from under him, staring down at him. "You're missing your child being born. Everyone has been trying to find you for two damn hours now." He hopped up and ran off, dragging her with him. "I don't need to see the supposed miracle of birth!" she complained.

"I don't want kids and can't have them anyway! You go fuss over your own spawn with Xander and Tara!" She got free and sighed as she walked off. He ran for his car, speeding off. She called that in. "Found him, sent him there. He didn't have his phone on him. No, I forgot to mention the bag, Xander. I can go break into their apartment to get her go bag for her." She hung up, looking up and shaking her head. "This is why I'll never have kids. They take out your brains." She found an officer staring at her. "Slayer Penny's in labor."

He grimaced. "I don't want to answer to a breaking and entering call, miss."

"I won't set off their security system." She smiled. "She forgot her bag." She strolled off, smiling at someone. "Hey, Vanessa." She smiled back. "Penny's in labor. Xander ordered us to chill and netflix tonight until someone causes a problem."

"That's a good idea. I'll go find Wade."

"Cool. I'm going to get Penny's bag for her. She forgot. Brad didn't have his phone. It's gonna be one of those nights apparently."

"We have netflix too," Vanessa quipped.

Lara smiled. "Have fun with your teddy human." She headed up to Brad's apartment, breaking in and turning off his security alarm for a few minutes. She got the bag, Penny's iPod, and a few things that were on the counter, like someone's wallet. She walked out with it, turning back on the security system and heading to the hospital once she had made sure the door was locked. It was a quick cab ride to the hospital and then a fast elevator ride up to labor and delivery. She walked in, handing Brad the wallet and bag. "Found that on the counter. Figured one of you guys forgot it."

He looked at it with a scowl. "That's not mine." He looked inside then groaned. "Aww, fuck. My former partner's in town, sweetie."

"I can break him," she grunted. "Easily right now."

"Sure, we can do that." He put her bag aside and moved to help hold her hand. Xander had her other side and Tara was taking a quick nap. "Lara, staying?"

"*Hell* no," she said dryly, cracking Penny up. "This is nasty shit I'm *never* doing and I'm *damn* glad I can't in any manner." She hugged Penny. "I hope it doesn't hurt as much as they say it does, Penny. Be safe. Let me go before I have to see nasty things. Is that blood?" She fled.

Xander glanced then nodded. He pushed the nurses button. "She's bleeding," he said quietly with a point.

The nurse put on gloves and looked. "That's part of the fluid, not full blood. Let me get the midwife in here to check you, Penny." Penny nodded, panting as she came down. The midwife came in to look and finished popping her water for her. Penny winced and clung to Brad's hand.

"Your water was only partially broken," the midwife said with a smile. "Now you're ready. The baby's in a good position. Head down, getting ready to crown. Call us when you're ready to push." She nodded.

"She could use some more fluids," Xander said quietly. "Please." The nurse nodded, getting her some.

The midwife smiled at him. "Yours?"

"His," he said with a point. "I've helped deliver a few to the foreign slayers."

"Aww. So you're protecting her?"

"That too." He grinned, taking the cup of ice chips. He let Brad take them. "We'll make sure nothing happens to the hospital tonight."

"Don't get in the way of the nurses," she said, walking off.

Xander grinned at Brad. "Aren't you glad I have those field medic classes and learned from Willow's mom's textbooks?"

"Yup," he agreed. "Means we get a lot easier care sometimes." He grinned at Xander.

A nurse leaned in. "You're trained?"

"Without the classwork. I'm the field medic for the Council half the time. Our docs are always overloaded so I handle the smaller injuries. I've been over the military's field medic classes as well. Plus I basically learned to read from Willow's Mom's medical textbooks. After the first one in Ghana, I picked up an OB textbook. Just in case. It came in really handy."

She shook her head. "So you're like a first year med student?" He grinned and nodded. "We can understand that. Don't get in the way and let us do our jobs."

"Of course. I don't want to deliver this kid."

She smiled. "Sometimes we have those days too. We hate seeing them in pain."

"I'd like painkillers to last more than three hours," Penny complained, sucking on some ice chips. She winced. "That labor pain feels different."

Xander pushed on her stomach then waved the nurse in. She came in to check and grimaced, calling the doctor and the midwife back. "It's time. Push now." She nodded, pushing hard when the pain started again. He looked at Brad, who nodded he was helping.

The midwife hurried in. "What happened?"

"She's got a tear," Xander said, putting her hand on it. She felt and winced. "We're pushing."

"Yes we are," she agreed, moving to help her. "Girls, let's go," she called. "Her OB?"

"Somewhere around here?" Xander guessed. "Doctor...."

"Abrahams," she panted. "I can't."

"You can," Xander ordered. "You've had worse. Remember that demon leach we had to pull out?" She grimaced but nodded, pushing again. "Want this position?"

"I..." She panted. Brad got up behind her to help hold her up. "Thank you." She bore down again. "Shit, this sucks."

Tara came over to draw runes on her stomach. "For an easier delivery, Penny," she said quietly, taking her free hand. "C'mon, we can get the baby out before the hernia becomes too huge." Penny nodded, pushing harder. Xander helped shift her position and that helped some, gave her easier stomach crunching.

Penny panted, groaning as the baby moved. "I felt it move."

The midwife nodded. "Two or three more good ones to push the head through the cervix, Penny. You can do this."

"The girls are going to fuss over the baby for the first week," Xander reminded her. "You can be all sore and hogging the tub." She nodded, wincing as she pushed again.

"We are?" Brad asked him.

"We are so the baby's protected and you can have some sleep," Xander said with a grin. "We expect you guys for a week."

"I guess that's okay," he decided. "It'll mean some help when we're exhausted." Penny laughed but nodded. "Sure, we can hog her old bed for a week."

"You two are getting my room. It's got the most protections on it," Xander said. "Plus the bigger bed."

"That is nice," Penny panted. "Yours is a queen instead of the twin I used to have." She sucked in a breath and tried again. She let out a scream, making everyone wince. "She moved!"

The midwife nodded. "The head's through the cervix. Just a bit more and it'll be out." She smiled. "Nearly there." The doctor hurried in. "She just grew a hernia suddenly."

"That's bad," he agreed, smiling at her. "Penny, how's the pain?"

"Sucks huge demon tits," she complained. "I hate pain." She looked up at Brad. "This is your only kid."

"I can do that. Or ask one of the witches to use that spell Rosenburg found to do it myself next time if we lose our minds." She laughed and the baby sank back in some so she pushed while the doctor put on gloves and got into position.

The midwife looked at Tara. "There is?"

"Yes and Willow's presently a mule so she can't use it on anyone."

"Thank you, Goddess," Xander said, looking up. "Because I know she'd have baby envy over this one and try it on me." He smiled when Penny laughed. "You know she would."

She nodded. "She would." She pushed and moaned. "She's stuck."

"She's not stuck," the doctor promised. "Just the shoulders are a bit big. You've got a future linebacker in there, dear."

"It's a boy?" she asked.

"No idea until you push that part out," he quipped, smiling at her. "One more good push to get the shoulders out, Penny." She panted but did it. Two more and the baby was sliding out with her scream. "There we go, and we have a boy," he said, holding him up.

She sighed in relief. "Oh thank God. I was hoping he was a boy."

Brad kissed her on the head. "Even if she was like her mommy I'd still love her," he said quietly. She tipped her head back to kiss him. "We'd handle it."

Xander coughed and pointed. "The baby's twinkling." Tara lunged for the baby and protected it just before the twinkling ended. "What sort of spell, Tara, and can we end it?"

"Gender changing and it's some of the higher of the coven. I think they're possessed." She tossed him her phone.

He looked at it then at her. "You want me to go talk to the darlings?"

"Please," she said, staring at him.

He grinned and pulled his wand, handing Penny the phone. "I'll be right back." He disappeared, landing there in a pop of noise. "How dare you fuck up Penny's kid!" he shouted, starting to fling curses to unpossess then bind them. "I'll be *damned* if you hurt Penny or her *son*!"

"The Powers..." one complained.

"Should've made him a her naturally then! It's wrong to do a gender reassignment spell without permission! Penny was really happy that she had a son!" He flung another curse at them, making them run. "I'll be damned if you're on the same side I am in saving humanity right now, ladies, and I use that term loosely. How dare you hurt Penny's son!" They wailed and ended the spell.

"The Powers said that we'll need future slayers," one of them shouted from behind a couch. They had been prepared for an attack. "It was her child or they'd end up *forcing* a few of the girls to give birth!"

"They made most of the slayers infertile," Xander said dryly. "That's their own fault." They groaned. "Leave Penny's son alone! And if they try to have the slayers raped I'm *so* going to find a way up there. I'll ask Strange to help me get onto the astral plane to go fuck up their worlds."

Cordelia appeared with her pom poms. "You go, Xander!"

He glared at her. "Penny's son?"

"Is a son again," she said with a grin. "And still has the slayer spirit."

"We've had two sets of fraternal twins with the boys having some."

She gaped. "What?" she demanded.

"Yeah. Esme's twin brother has slayer markings and spirit infestation. He comes up positive on the slayer testing fluids." He grinned. "So does Mya's twin brother."

"Oh, shit," she said, staring in awe. "Wow. That could cause a problem."

"I've already warped that prophecy too," he said dryly. "I gave Mya's twin a lot of training. He can already talk to the slayer spirit and all that good stuff. She adores him. He helped Esme's brother since I couldn't be there. Now, both have a future sickness in their lines, but yeah, they can both handle that stuff."

She moaned, a happy sound. "Oh my god, you warped reality."

He grinned, blowing a kiss. "You're welcome too." She disappeared. He glared at the staring witches. "What you did was *wrong*, witches. Not even just ethically wrong but *wrong* on every level! How dare you hurt Penny! With the hell she's went through since the First came for her?" They groaned, looking at each other. "Now, let me go help welcome my newest minion of spoiling."

He stared at them. "At least we still like Tara." He disappeared, going back to the hospital. And the empty room. He came out and the nurse pointed. "Did I miss?" She nodded. "Okay, sorry." He walked in there, staring at Penny, who was cuddling her son. "The PTB wanted a new line of slayers in the future. They've realized they were wrong and Cordelia is amazed that I warped reality because there's been two fraternal twin brothers who had slayer infections too," he said dryly.

"So there's actually future male slayers?" Tara asked.

"Yeah." He grinned. "They both have sicknesses in their later lines but they're strong lines. I had a seer with that gift look at Mya's brother." He smirked at her, kissing her on the cheek. "I also taught him how to touch the slayer spirit he was filled with. He's got it stronger than his sister does and she *adores* him. I've already all but canceled out that stupid prophecy about males doing the job of slayers. Just by being myself and with their births."

"Oh, dear Goddess," she moaned. "Did you leave them living?"

"Yeah. They were set up for an attack too."

"If I had been able, I'd have done it," Penny quipped. "So is he still imbued?"

Tara got the slayer testing kit from her bag. "I brought it just in case you had a girl." She put it on the bed and poked his finger, making him fuss. She ran the test, taking the baby to cuddle.

Xander took him from her. "Yeah, you've got the spirit, baby guy. I can feel her and I'm hardly ever wrong."

Tara nodded. "Not this time either." She went to the nurse. "We need to run the slayer testing please," she said quietly. "That's why the witches tried to change him."

"But he's a boy."

"Yes but it never left apparently," she said grimly.

"We can have that run." She came to get a tiny bit of blood for the lab. She saw the initial test and nodded. "That's a strong one. We've had one born that was that strong."

"Was she a mutant too?" Xander asked. "Most of the girls that score that darkly on it are."

The nurse nodded. "About a year ago."

"Yeah, I've met her. She's Bethy's youngest half-sibling," Xander told Tara. "HYDRA had her made since her mom was one."

"Awww. That's mean of them." She blinked. "Hold on, how many kids does that make him?"

Xander grinned. "They all showed up to fuss over me when I got shot. There's thirteen."

She gaped. "Wow."

"Only three the natural way."

"Super wow. Damn." She covered her mouth.

Penny looked back at her husband, who was still being leaned on. "We're not doing that. If someone makes us kids, I'm going to destroy them."

He nodded, kissing her on the head. "I'll help. You can follow me into their lair."

"I'll help," Xander said with a manic grin. "A lot." They grinned at him. The nurse walked off shaking her head but smiling. They got the results back about an hour later. "Yup, and it looks like a small mutation." He handed them to Penny. "That's the slayer strength rating. That's the upgrading things in the blood test," he said quietly, pointing at them. "This is the x-gene test." She sighed but nodded. He looked at her. "Is that going to bother you?"

"No, but him having a prophecy about him would."

Xander looked it up but Tara found it to hand over first. "That's the prophecy about guys doing a slayer's job."

She and Brad read it, grimacing at it. "Wow, Xander, you warped it before it was known."

"Yes I did," he said dryly. He grinned. "That leaves the last two paragraphs or stanzas to still be effected but that's clearly Esme's brother. Mya's isn't a white guy and it's an older one so probably not yours."

She cuddled her son, handing Tara back the phone. "Can you copy that for me?" she asked. Tara nodded, kissing her on the head. She did a protection on the baby. "Thanks." She smiled at them. "Both of you."

"Not a problem. I'll go tell the bar and the girls." He patted her on the foot. "I'll be back tomorrow to drive you home or to drop off the car seat that Brad probably forgot."

"No, it's in the backseat of the car," Penny said. "Has been for weeks since it took us four days to figure out how to install it." He grinned and nodded, leaving her alone, Tara going with him. She looked up with a sigh. "I hate the Powers."

"If we die, we're going to kick their asses as only commandos and slayers can, sweetheart."

She smiled. "You say the best things." They shared a kiss and went back to cooing at their son. He was adorable.


Xander walked Tara into the bar and everyone shut up to stare at them. "Penny's *son* is all right, and back to being a boy after the witches in Devon tried to change that. So far he's healthy, loving his mommy by napping on her, and yeah, he's got the slayer gift thanks to that five minutes of being a girl." He grinned, accepting the beer and buying a round. "They're fine, people, and Penny's just fine too. Has a new hernia but she'll be good." He raised the glass. "To little ...." He looked at Tara.

"Bruno Bradley Comtes." She smiled at the guys. "Thank you for holding things down while they were in danger."

"Miss, we'd hate for them to attack little babies," Weasel said.

"Weasel, this is Tara, the most excellent white witch ever." Xander pulled her closer. "This is the merc bar the girls like to hang out at because it's pretty safe for them. Tara, this is Weasel, he's a great guy when the girls come in and doesn't let them drink unless they look like hell. This is Wade and Vanessa. The girls kidnap her now and then for shoe shopping and Wade is Deadpool, who's helped the girls a lot with battles."

She smiled and waved a bit. "Hi."

Vanessa smiled at her. "Don't be scared of Wade, Tara. I keep him on a short leash." Wade barked but kissed her.

Weasel smiled at her. "We're safe here, Tara."

"I'm not used to bars or guys," she said with a tiny shrug. "But it's nice the girls are safe here." She looked up. "Oooh, Buffy's mad." She disappeared.

Xander sipped his beer, calling the house. "Baby Bruno Bradley Comtes was born, is now back to his boy self thanks to the witches and the PTB, and is presently defying a prophecy." The girl on the other end squealed. "Thanks, Kara. Really. Spread it?" He hung up, taking a larger sip. "I caught them having happy time."

Weasel smiled. "Piotr seems like he's strong enough to make a girl squeal but sweet enough to not make it too loud."

"Kara's a squealer," Xander said. "They proved it their first weekend in England. Even Kennedy teased her about the squealing." The others in the bar laughed. "He's good to her, that's all I care about."

"Harris, can I date Mercy?" one of the guys called.

Xander looked at him. "No, but you can once you quit your alcoholism and your drug habit." He stared at him, sipping his drink. "I don't want the girls pulled into that hell."

He nodded. "I'm trying."

"Good. Then I'm not against that but if you go back down that hellish rabbit hole, you don't bring her."

The guy nodded. "I can agree to that."

Xander grinned. "Then the only thing I could complain about is that you usually look sweaty when I see you. Take a shower before you take her out, John."

"Yes, Xander," he quipped. "I'll ask her out later." He went back to his pool game. The other guys clapped him on the back.

Vanessa smiled at Xander. "You're a big brother."

"Yes I am," he quipped. "A lot." He finished his beer. "Let me get back to the house. I'll go patrol the hospital later after a nap. Just in case someone gets terminally stupid and tries for the baby or Penny."

"Logan's got some people out doing that," Deadpool said.

"That's sweet of him. I'll thank him for that later." He grinned. "Have fun, people." He paid for the beer and left to go home.

Weasel smiled at the guys. "He's good to them."

Everyone nodded. Xander was a great big brother to the slayers. He proved it often.


Kara hung up and stood up, waving her hands. All the other mutants in the tv room looked at her. "Penny had a little boy, who is a little boy again thanks to the witches trying things, and he's fine so far. Xander mentioned there was a prophecy he was defying and the PTB tried to interfere with him being born a boy but he's all right." She sat down.

"That's great news," Rogue said. "Penny's a sweet girl." She smiled. "He's healthy?"

"Xander didn't say he wasn't so I'm guessing so. I'm wondering what the witches and PTB were trying to do." She shook her head. "But it's great that he's born safely."

"They changed the baby's gender?" Emma Frost demanded.

"Yeah, the PTB are the higher celestial beings over the slayers," Kara told her with a slight shrug. "They're the ones that pick us out before birth and all that stupid stuff. They play chess with our lives and then don't watch their board since they planned ahead. They *hate* Xander for making their plans work. I'm not sure what they were doing but it doesn't really surprise me that they tried to turn Penny's son into a daughter."

"Could they have wanted her to be a slayer?" Piotr asked.

"Probably, and possessed some of the coven to make sure of it." She grinned. "Thankfully Tara was helping. I heard her in the background. Xander was at the merc bar when he called."

"Why?" Rogue asked.

"Brad's one and we girls can hang out there pretty safely. There was one nasty attempted pilling and kidnaping but Xander stomped them." She grinned. "A few of the slayers have found mercenaries for boyfriends. We're all hoping like hell Buffy finds one for more than a few fun minutes."

Roque smiled but nodded. "I've heard." She relaxed. "At least she'll be safe now."

"The baby's safe in ten days," she said. "Before then they can take the baby to kill and it'll kill the mom if they do the right spells. After that he's his own being so they'd just get him." Rogue winced. "Yeah. Stupid beings do exist though." She shrugged. "We all deal with them."

"Point," she agreed. "We do too." The girls shared a grin. "But it's good she's fine. What's his name?"

"Bruno Bradely Comtes."

"Aww." She grinned at Emma. "She's the first slayer baby born in the US since the mass calling."

"That's something happy," she agreed. "Most children being born are a happy event."

"All but Amanda's," Kara agreed. "And if her former Marine Corps asshole higher ups show up we're all going to help her destroy them."

"The one at the battle in DC?" Pietro asked from his seat in the corner.

She smiled at him and nodded. "Yeah, her. She's adopting it out."

"That's sweet. I'm wondering if I can do that with some of mine."

Kara laughed. "I'm hoping they have great parents."

"Me too. Because I can't do that." He looked at Rogue, who was staring at him. "I got sent as a messenger to Remy."

"He's upstairs."

He grinned and sped off to find him.

Kara grinned back. "We girls think he's neat. We talk about music when we run into each other. He doesn't even try to flirt with us."

Rogue nodded. "That's a nice thing sometimes. I get a lot of guys who stare at my boobs."

"Me too," Kara agreed. "I slugged one last week." Piotr growled. "I told him two days later when the guy complained I broke his nose." He nodded with a smug look.

Illyana looked at her brother then at Kara. "You broke the man's nose?"

"I sure as hell did. My boobs aren't his entertainment and I don't appreciate him trying to make it so," she said dryly. "If he had kept it at leering I would've just smartassed him to death. Instead he tried to grab my ass."

"You did not tell me this," Piotr complained, staring at her.

She patted him on the arm. "I handled it."

"I'm sure you did but sometimes I wish to handle things so you don't have to."

She kissed him then grinned. "I know. It's the guy thing and I appreciate that about you, even if I do beat you arm wrestling, honey." He snorted but looked amused.

Rogue laughed. "It's good you don't wait to be saved."

"Hell no. I'm a self rescuing princess because if you're not, you're stranded and probably in more danger. I learned that long before Xander taught us how to be self rescuing. My former watcher made sure I knew that guys were always bad for us. Thankfully he was wrong about some of them."

Rogue nodded. "Some guys are good. Not all but there's a good few. Thankfully my momma was wrong about that too." Kara grinned and nodded. "Did you get to know your parents?"

"Yeah, they didn't come for me until I was five." She shrugged. "I've written my aunt a few times but my mom died thanks to the First Evil. My aunt said she was pregnant." Rogue winced. "I'm lucky I made it out of the house when they came for me but I was in Bermuda and there were agents there on vacation who saw them attack the house. My watcher died on the way to Sunnydale when we paused to pick up Lara and Sochi. One of theirs got us to someone safe and to Sunnydale thanks to an agent in the know."

"So you don't talk?" Rogue asked.

Kara winced. "That's her choice. She had a point it was dangerous but we send cards during the winter holidays." She shrugged. "It happens. A lot of us have relatives further out that aren't real happy that we're slayers. We're sisters of choice, for the most part. A few of the slayers no one likes. Even Buffy." She winced. "A few I could suggest drugs to, of any kind they choose. One could really start using pot to get mellow. It'd help."

Rogue smiled. "There's people like that all over."

"I know. Kennedy's got two. Thankfully she's grown up since that battle in Sunnydale. She used to be a 'I'm a rich girl and a slayer," she said with a hair flick. "I'm special." Rogue laughed. "Thankfully after Willow electrocuted her for cheating on her, she grew up a lot. She's doing good in London. We can actually count on Kennedy now."

Rogue smiled and nodded. "I met her when she was in charge here. She had some of that special girl stuff then."

"Was that before or after Willow hit her with lightening for cheating on her?" Kara asked dryly.

"Before. We heard about that and all winced."

"So did we," Kara agreed. "But then again we all wince about Willow. Thankfully she's a tiny pink mule now."

Pietro came back down the stairs. "We heard she was but not why."

Kara looked back at him. "There was a spell created back in the dark ages to remove the slayer lines. It took killing 188 of them while keeping the original slayer alive so she was the last for real and it has to be done within a month. Back then it wouldn't have been able but now it is and she was going to do it. Supposedly to spare most of us." She gave him a look when he shuddered. "They stopped her when she tried something else and found out about that one when they depossessed her. She was still going to attempt it so the demon bar in town that Xander plays poker at most often changed her into a baby pink mule."

"Hopefully she stays for a bit. That's horrific."

Kara nodded. "We would've fought back. With her magic she could've shielded it some but not that much. Xander would've been on the front lines of stomping her into greasy component parts."

He nodded. "If you find one of those, tell us so we can help," he said with a grin. "And I'd never flirt with you, you're taken." He rushed off.

She smiled at her man. "It's good he realizes that. A few of the girls thinks he's hot but they'd hate being a stepmommy. Though maybe we can talk him into dating Faith. She could use a good guy."

He kissed her. "Faith likes hers more dangerous, Kara."

"Point. At least he's not evil." She took another kiss and curled up against his side again. "It should be quiet tonight."

"We can only hope," Rogue agreed. "And for the next week."

She waved a hand. "Penny, Brad, and Bruno are coming to the house for a week so Penny can heal more safely. We'll all need a nap but Xander said this is our lesson on why birth control is so great." She burst out laughing, nodding at that idea. "I thought he was right too. I'm not ready for kids yet."

"We have at least a few years yet," Piotr agreed. "I would not like one to appear before we are married." She grinned up at him, pinching him on the chest. He smirked back.

Illyana looked at him. "I can ask our aunt for any family rings," she said quietly.

He looked at her, ruffling her hair. "Those will go to you. You are closer to the family than I am." She smiled and nodded. He looked down at Kara. "I will give you something better than a Voltron ring that Wade gave Vanessa."

"It was sweet," she said with a grin. "But you know I don't need fancy things, Piotr."

"True. I do like that about you." He cuddled her again, going back to the tv show they were all watching.

Rogue smiled at them then at Emma. Who grinned back. They were a cute couple. Illyana was smiling too so apparently she approved. Jean came in and Rogue smiled at her. "Slayer Penny had a healthy baby boy. He's still a boy after the coven tried to change that but he's all good."

"That's wonderful. I'll tell Scott." She sent that text message and sat down on Kara's free side. Piotr looked at her, a slight scowl on his face, then he went back to cuddling his girlfriend. Kara fell asleep on his shoulder but that was about normal from what Jean had seen. Kara moaned and woke up holding her head after a few minutes. "What was that?" Jean demanded.

"Stupid slayer dreams," she muttered. "Anyone got some paper so I can take this down before I go throw a fit at someone outside?" Piotr found her some to write it out. He texted it to Xander's phone as he saw what she was writing. "Fucking Powers. I really need to find a way up there to kick their asses," she muttered. She sighed, leaning her head back. He rubbed her neck, making her look up at him. "Thanks," she said quietly. "Were you texting Xander?" He nodded. "Good, then they can do another nose count tonight and tomorrow night. Hopefully we can avert that stupidity in action." She folded the paper and handed it to him. "So we can send it to Giles tomorrow."

"I had forgotten about him." He took her phone to text Andrew. He had talked to Andrew a few times. He had even gotten the shovel talk from Andrew once. Andrew's answer back was vulgar swearing but said he'd do what he could to protect the slayers.


Xander looked at his phone, growling. He put up a mass call. "Ladies, it's me. Kara just had a slayer dream about something I stopped the witches from doing earlier. They tried to change Penny's son into a girl because they wanted more slayers in the future. They were planning on having some of you attacked if he was put back into a boy. Kara's dream said they're going to go ahead with that."

"Fuck," Kennedy said. "That won't go over well. Let me tell my girls." She hung up.

Xander looked at his girls then at the phone. "We need to ask someone how to get onto their plane. I'll see if I can find a source for that."

"Piotr just texted me that vision too," Andrew announced. "Damn it. We have two girls out on dates tonight but their guys aren't like that unless they're pushed."

"Those two probably wouldn't be the sort to rape them," Xander said bluntly. "I'm not worried about dates, Andrew. It can happen but we can pretty well screen most of them out. They all know we'll kill their asses if they date rape the girls."

"Indeed," Giles agreed. "Did she see which ones?"

"No. Not that he said," Andrew said. He grunted. "No, I texted, he said she didn't note any specific girls."

"We'll send out a slayer wide warning," Giles said. "Girls, do be safe and careful."

"The vision showed all soon," Xander said. "Within a month probably. The witches figured out what they did wrong when I went to protest them doing a gender spell on the baby."

"Is he imbued?" Giles asked, sounding like he winced.

"Yeah, just like Esme's twin brother is, Giles," he said dryly. "By that prophecy, I fit and I warped most of it. The last two stanzas or whatever are about a male with the gifts and I've had both of them taught about the slayer spirit. They can both talk to her and she likes them. Have Buffy or Faith ask her about them."

Faith moaned. "Mya's twin," she said.

"Yup. I taught him directly and he taught Esme's brother. It was fully in him and he's got a stronger link than his sister did. That's why I taught him."

Giles cleared his throat. "Do I have a report on that?"

"No. I found that prophecy way back when thanks to Angel leaving it on the table back in high school," he said dryly. "I got the point then and I had already warped it by then."

"Yes, that's why they didn't want helpers for the girls," he said. He sighed. "The PTB are probably not amused about that."

"They don't care about that," Xander said. "They're trying to get slayers for in fifteen to twenty years, Giles. I'm one of the reason we'll have some."

"Oh, I didn't think of that." He paused. "All right. We're going to warn all the girls. I'll talk to both of those boys about their connection to the slayer spirit and see if they got the download."

"Mya's brother did," Xander said. "Don't know about Esme's."

"That's fine. Buffy, since you have the scythe, do talk to her?"

"I can do that," she agreed. "That's kinda neat." She hung up.

"Why those two?" another girl asked.

"They're fraternal twins," Xander said with a grin.

"Oh! That makes a lot of sense. Stiphi's twin sister has some of that but not the full sense."

"Yup," Xander said. "But Mya's twin brother has the full deal. Mole and all."

"Interesting," Giles agreed. "I'll talk about that. Andrew, send out that warning."

"I have," he promised. "Including to those girls who use magical communications because they don't use phones." He hung up.

"Thank you, everyone. Do be safe," Giles said. "Xander, did you vary their training?"

"No. Not in the least. I start out with them talking to the slayer spirit while I work on self defense and classwork if they're that young."

"Good. I'll talk to them soon." He hung up with a sigh.

Xander looked at his girls, who all nodded. "Make sure every mini in the area hears to be safe and their moms hear why if they're that young. Or dads." They nodded, pulling out phones to call. "I've got Bethy." He called Wanda. "It's Xander. We just got a head's up vision that shouldn't affect Bethy since she's only ten and not hit puberty yet but the PTB...yeah, them, Wanda. Yep that was their idea. They want slayers in the future and were going to have the girls attacked. That's why Penny's son nearly was a daughter. Actually was a daughter for a few minutes. Exactly so we're warning everyone to make sure.

"Wanda, I'm not sure they're realistic enough to realize she's just ten," he said bluntly. "They don't often pay attention to such details." She groaned. "So can you watch out for Bethy and do you want me to tell her? I can do that. Yup, just be aware that they have a plan. Wanda, with your magic, it might be possible that you're a backup plan. Also, at one time the old Council wanted to start a line of older slayer using Miss Natasha and a few others. She knows about that so can you warn her just in case?"

He grinned. "Thanks, Wanda. Of course, I always have tact with the kids." He hung up and called Bethy. "It's me. Get your parents and put the phone on speaker." He sighed while she did that. "We're calling in a warning. The PTB have a plan to attack the girls to get slayers in the future. They tried with Penny's son and a gender reassignment spell that was countered thankfully but we've had a slayer vision about them going after the kids. Exactly. Which is why I'm subtly calling," he said dryly. "I've told Wanda just in case they try for her, Bethy," he said when she started to worry.

"She'll warn the others. Right now I want you to be extra specially careful when you're out and about. Okay? I'm not sure if the PTB realize you're only ten, sprout. You've seen them ignore details before I'm sure," he said dryly. "Yeah, just like the slayer vision about a battle you'd never be at because of your age and the slayers having to ride horses up the street.

"That's why I'm warning, Bethy's stepdad. And I'm being subtle due to her age. Yeah, we're warning all the girls. Have fun but be safe, Bethy. Yeah, she had a boy. He's safe. Bruno Bradley Comtes. He'll be here for his first week so Penny can heal safely. Sure, I don't mind if your parents don't mind bringing you. Okay, we'll see you in a few days when she gets out of the hospital." He hung up and leaned his head back. He called someone.

"Hey, it's Xander Harris. Would the funky doctor have any resources on how to get to the plane where the PTB are hiding so we can have a talk about reality with them?" He listened to the spluttering. "No, they've decided there won't be enough slayers in the future so they're going to make it so by force," he said dryly. "I'd really like to get up there to kick them around. So if he finds a way can he let me know? Thank you." He hung up and leaned his head back again, shaking it.

"Maybe if we summon Cordelia and Whistler but hold them hostage they'll show up," one of the minis said.

Xander looked at her. "Miffy, them showing up on this realm might be a bad thing but I'm pretty sure Cordelia would play along with that idea." She grinned. He hugged her. "It's nearly bedtime. Go sleep and tell us if you have any visions, ladies." They headed up to let him angst in private.

This was going to be a huge problem.


Wanda walked out to where most of the team was watching movies. Stark looked at her and paused the movie. "What's wrong, Wanda?" he asked. "You look pissed off."

"The powers over the slayers have decided to make sure they have ones in the future," she said. "By force." She looked at Natasha. "Xander wanted you warned because of a past plan?"

"There was a plan in place but I cannot have children," she said quietly. "I will warn the others that they had on their desired list for that plan. Are your nieces safe?"

"I hope so. They're telling all the girls and parents." She sat down. "He wasn't sure if they'd come for me as well due to my gifts." Clint was closest so he patted her on the shoulder. She looked at him then at Stark. "We need to find a way up there."

"I'll look to see what I can find. You can ask Dr. Strange if he'd know of anyone who might know."

"I can do that tomorrow."

"If someone tries that on you, you beat their asses," Clint told her firmly. "Even if they're normal and you have to use your powers, do it." She nodded at that. "We'll gladly come help you if we can get to you." She smiled and nodded, patting him on the knee. She got up and left again. Clint looked at Stark. "If we find a way, I'm volunteering."

"You're not the only one," Steve Rogers said. "That's foul."

"Foul was them changing Penny's son into a daughter to get a future slayer," Wanda called from the hallway. "Thankfully we've heard he's still a boy."

Stark nodded, looking at the others. "If we can find a way, we'll take a team trip." They all nodded at that. They'd all like to go on that road trip.


"Aww, look, it's a little girly girl," a male voice said.

Kara looked around then shrugged. "You're probably dickless and too scared to talk to a real woman but I'm not interested, dude. I've got a man. He's magnificent." She walked off again.

"I doubt he can stand up to me," the male voice said, stepping out of an alley. He looked like a large football player with an egg helmet and a chest plate overtop of speedos. "I'm the Juggernaut, Bitch."

She snorted, staring at him. "I've heard of you. Yay you," she said dryly. "I'm a slayer. That means I'm nicer and still yet more mean than you can ever hope to be." She waved a hand. "Have a better day somewhere else." She walked around him. He growled and rushed at her. She put some new tumbling lessons into use by vaulting over him and backflipping back onto her feet.

"Not as easy as on the mats," she complained, looking at her feet. The guy had hit a building and was trying to get his helmet unstuck. She sighed. "He's a major road hazard," she decided, taking out a little pouch she usually carried. She walked over to him and stuck one of the tiny thorns in the area between his helmet and his chest armor, making him moan as the paralytic worked on him. "Now, let's see what we can do to get you out of that building before people have to move. There's not enough housing in this city as is."

"Take his helmet off," was yelled from a few blocks away. She could barely hear it.

She waved she had heard and looked at it then hauled him away from it. It was stuck, he wasn't. She pulled the helmet out of the stone and tossed it a bit away with a casual toss. She stared down at him. "So did you want to talk to me today?" she asked dryly, smirking at him. "I wasn't even on patrol. I was out to get trashy lingerie for a club hunt. And maybe my boyfriend. But noooo, you had to interrupt my stress shopping. Did you want to be my stress relief method?"

The guy moaned again. He tried to move his hand. She looked at it and took the note crumpled in it. "Hmm, sweaty note. Your sweat made the ink run. Does that say that you're going to take out all the slayers?" He shook his head slightly. "Just me? Or me because I'm dating Piotr?" He groaned. "Oh! You're going to take out all the female mutants who fight!" she realized. "Well, pity. They're tougher than you are and have seen better men. Even ones who aren't sweaty and don't have to wear super armor to feel manly."

A guy with wings landed beside her. "Kara, are you all right?"

"I'm just fine, Warren." She smiled as she handed over the note. "I think he meant he was going to take out the female warriors."

"Or someone was and he was sent as a fair warning so it'd be a long contest," he said, looking at him. "I've called the Professor."

She looked at him. "Do we need him?"

"Probably. He's his brother."

"Oh. Charming." She looked down and shrugged. "I was going to do some stress shopping for a future club hunt. My last trashy club outfit got torn by the vampy vamps we were hunting."

He looked at her. "Why are you so stressed?"

"Piotr's sister showed up after someone wrote her that we were seriously dating."

He groaned. "Oh, God," he muttered, shaking his head. "Rogue?"

"Jean we're pretty sure. Rogue wouldn't do that."

"She's a bit jealous."

"She's got conflicting interests. One steadier yet sexy and one less steady and her age. He'll probably grow into steady but not too wild."

"We think Bobby's going too wild already," he complained.

She pinched his cheek. "That's because of your age and you never get to cut loose and just have fun, Warren. You should come club with the girls. We'd protect you. Mercy would love to flirt with you too." She grinned.

"I think that's a bit too wild for me," he said with a small smile but a blush too. They looked up at the cleared throat. "Hey, Cyclops."

"Angel. Kara." He nodded, looking at the guy on the ground. "What did you use on him?"

"Demon paralytic," she said with a grin. "The tiny thorn works on huge things like giant demons. It worked on him and it'll work for probably another hour."

Cyclops nodded. "That's neat. I'd like to look at those." She let him see her little pouch. "Hmm, easy to hit yourself with them but handy."

"Self healing gift and slayers seem to be immune to it. If it hadn't worked on him, the purple dart would've put him into a frozen state for at least thirty minutes. That's why it's got a cap."

"You ladies do carry some weird but effective weapons," he said, handing the pouch back. "His helmet?" She pointed. It had been hit by a passing car and knocked a few feet away. It was also now dented. "Good. That keeps telepaths out of his mind."

"I'm about to have one inked on me," she said. "Slayers can't form the usual shields and I know we drive telepaths nuts with the diversion shields we can form."

Warren smiled at her. "That would be nice but the only two who do snoop would think it was for different reasons."

"I know and I'd let them know. I'm pretty sure little Bethany got a bad image from me last night during the movie."

"Could be," Cyclops said. "Bobby explained it to her. It wasn't a horrible one like you hunting at least."

"No, they get minor things instead. Not that comfy for them probably. If I could keep them inside better I wouldn't worry but one of the girls that Miffy's going to be studying with next year is a pretty strong telepath."

"Who?" he asked. "Is she coming to us?"

"Her mother is rich, famous, and a pacifist."

"Oh, her. We've heard."

"I need to ink on something before she sees something horrible from me too."

Storm landed with Emma Frost being dropped off. "I don't think you need to go that far," Storm said.

"Miffy's going to be studying with little Kitten."

"Oh." She nodded. "That may help since the shields you've managed to create can create loud diversions."

"I don't want the kids to have to see parts of battles by accident," she agreed. "Xander said there's mystical markings listed that can create mental shields."

"Have I met this Kitten?" Emma asked.

"Her mom's Alantha," Cyclops said.

"Oh, her. She's an adorable child. Is she coming to the school?"

"She's going to St. Augustine's," Kara said. "With some of the slayers. She's going to be in Miffy's class. They met up the other day to meet their teacher and everyone else. She and Miffy got along great and her mom protected Miffy and Kitten from one mother that needed listerine applied to her brain, wherever she may store it."

Emma looked at her. "Tattoos are forever. We can potentially help you reformat your shields, Kara."

She smiled. "You can't. That's how the slayer essence wants them formed. We can do many things that she doesn't like but she does craft our skills with the download."

"Oh. That's how." She nodded. "So a mystical download?"

"Once we're activated. Since there's now potentials again, at least until they're probably at least teenagers, they may be able to form them in other ways before she gets in there. We figure it'll be at least another ten years before we're all dead," she said at Emma's arch look her way. "We have no idea if they'll automatically activate or not but we know that we won't last forever and we'll probably have about ten years before we're too few to handle major emergencies. Which is probably why the PTB wanted us to have kids." She grimaced. "And wanted the ones that aren't fertile to do it."

"They're so cranked," Warren complained.

"Yeah, cranked was Xander having that vision because they couldn't change the new baby's gender to make her a slayer," Xander said as he appeared. "Yet he's still a slayer."

Kara winced. "Still?"

"He's not the first."

She grinned. "Buffy had a bet with Faith about the twin brothers."

"You bet," he said dryly. "And they're more connected than their sisters. The slayer essence made her choices known." He shrugged but grinned. "You good? Your health monitor went off for a few minutes." She pointed. "Oh, him." He walked over, smirking down at him and waving. "Didn't I warn you away from my baby slayer in Cairo? What did I tell you I'd do to you?" The guy made whining noises. "I can summon that same crocodile to shove up your ass. I can do it even better now and not be bitten when I shove it."

"That's mean," Emma Frost said, glaring at him.

Xander blew a kiss with a grin. "Thank you. I'm surrounded by teenage girls every day. I inherited it with the lack of the bathroom."

Kara giggled. "Yeah, you did, Xander. We'll try to let you have the bathroom sometimes."

"Please do. I put in another three."

"There's nine of us in the house and four bathrooms. Plus a semi-bathroom that still doesn't have a sink."

"I can't put one in without diverting from the sink." She rolled her eyes. "Use the ones in the new side?"

"I have been. It's how I get a bathroom at all."


Storm shook her head. "Thankfully we have a much nicer bathroom ratio in our dorms."

"We had to convert a building," Xander said. "I'm still working on it."

Kara hugged him. "You're great to us. Giles didn't seem to understand why five women couldn't share one bathroom."

"You got to miss Sunnydale when we had seventeen girls, Giles, Andrew, Spike, and me in one house with one bathroom."

"Ewww," she said with a wince. "I got there after we moved to the mansion. It at least had three. Even if one was basically an outhouse."

"Dru liked it when she and her daddy lived there," he said dryly. "Spike told the girls that when they complained about it. Then to feel lucky that she had snacked on all the spiders."

"Is she still alive?"

"Connor said they got her but yeah, she is. I got my birthday card this year again." She shook her head as she walked off. "Be careful."

"I am." She looked back. "I'm doing a potential check this week for you."

"Thank you. Saves me work."

"Welcome. I'm taking Bethy."

"She's a good team leader," he agreed. "She does with her sibs." Kara nodded. Storm was giving him an odd look. "Pietro's oldest is both."

"Oh. I had heard that slayers couldn't be mutants."

"We have three now that are. Two of them from Pietro's kids."

"So perhaps it's from the parents being mutants," she decided. "Can we look into that?"

"As long as no one takes blood from the kids, yeah. They have parents. Bethy's mom is out of traction and back at home with her."

"Thank you. It's interesting. Do they get training?"

"They get double training," Xander said with a grin. "Self defense for future slayers and training with their gifts so they're not vulnerable."

"Good," Storm agreed. "You have sense in what you train the girls to protect themselves. How do you know this one?"

"He had a contract to take out one of the minis to destabilize a group. I vowed I was going to stick a crocodile up his ass for it." He looked down at him. "I used the same paralytic on you." He grinned. "I'm sure there's one in the nearby zoo. Or they say there's some in the sewer system. It should be the same to them when they go up your ass." The man made another, louder groaning moment. "He'll be free of it in about a half hour."

"Thankfully we have things we can hitch him with," Cyclops said. Storm handed them over so they could lock him down and get him back to the school's holding facility. Xander helped lift him into the SUV that showed up to pick them up. "You're really strong."

"I used to work construction," he said. "Then I had to handle a sword or an axe for hours sometimes. Then I went to Africa. They're all from use." He walked off. "I'm getting a cheeseburger I don't have to share with a tiny mouth of begging."

"Thank you," Storm called after him. "He is a very nice man. Very protective of the slayers as well."

"He is," Warren agreed. "He's very much a big brother to the whole group. I saw him threatening a boyfriend one night with an axe but the guy promised he wasn't going to get handsy again with whichever one that was."

"Some guys have to be taught to take no for an answer," Cyclops said. He got in. Storm and Warren flew back but the rest rode back with the villain. Later that night he cornered Piotr in the kitchen. "Who wrote your sister?" he asked quietly. "Some people are giving Rogue bad looks for doing it."

He shook his head while finishing fixing his sandwich. "Rogue would not do that to Kara. They're friends." He looked at him. "Your girlfriend however." He walked off.

"I'll talk with her," he said, going to find Jean to talk to her about her jealous, destructive ways. She took those moments.


Kara appeared the next morning at the school, taking a few of them with her. "C'mon, it's a girls day. You too, sister-in-law." She hauled her out by her arm, making her laugh. "We're doing girl things today. The slayers have all revolted and are going to take today off with Xander's blessing and suggestion. He even bought us spa passes for a local one." She grabbed Rogue when she walked past her, but by the sleeve because she knew not to touch her skin. "Girls day."

"Hell yeah, I could use one too," she quipped, getting a set of keys. Kara could drive. She could drive. That let them pick up a few of their female friends to go hang out with.

Illyana looked at Rogue. "You two are friends?"

"Yeah. Kara and I are pretty good friends. Ever since Piotr introduced us." She smiled. "Kara's a nice girl. Even my mother would've approved of her, even if she couldn't approve of her calling." She grinned at the younger woman. "Kara's a great lady. Even in her less ladylike moments she's still a great lady. And she teases me about my crushes." She drove them off.

"You are not allowed to drive," the radio in the SUV said. "You're not that old, Rogue."

She flipped it off. "Not enough of us at the center can drive. We can fly and can't drive. It's stupid." The other girls all nodded and settled in for the ride to the city. It was only a little over an hour the usual way and Kara's chosen spa was nearer to them. It was run by a demon group but the ones with four arms were even better masseuses and they could get all the girl stress out together. The other slayers showed up to be pampered too.

Including Penny. She didn't have the baby but she needed some post-baby pampering. "Brad's pushing present for me was spa time," she quipped to the other slayers and girls, who all hugged her if they could move.

"I need a guy like Brad," one of the younger slayers said. "And a good anti-acne treatment. I've got backne."

"We can figure it out," Penny promised, settling in to get a pedicure first. She could relax here, it was safe. One of the girls was looking anxious. Penny reached over to poke her. "Xander made sure it'll be safe today. He's up the street at the bookstore with a few of the mercs that some of you are dating," she said with a smirk. "So even if something huge tries to invade today, we're good." That slayer nodded, making herself relax.

"Why is Xander in a bookstore?" Mercy asked. "He hates to read for fun. Comics sure but not regular reading. The only bookstore I saw was one of the old and dusty sort."

Penny grinned at her. "He's talking to an ex-boyfriend about the girls who're on patrol in Africa."

"Awww," all the slayers and a few of the mutants said.

"He nearly went to Cambodia to threaten a slayer's husband," one quipped. "Last week. He video called instead from the armory." That got a laugh from the massage techs too.

They all expected that from Xander. He was just like that.

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