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"You keep running into my agent," Gibbs said the next day when he ran into Alex on his way to work.

"I guess he's just lucky." He smiled at him. "Because I am amazing. How's his head?"

"Fine. Why were you at that club?"

"Xander spotted a whole bunch of pretty girls being let in and picked it instead of one of my usual. Which I've seen Tony at before." He took his coffee, paid a tip, and left. "Gotta go to work. Tell him we said feel better and Xander's already on his way back to Africa."

Gibbs growled a bit but he couldn't fault that reason if it was the truth. He wasn't sure it was. He followed him back to the law office, finding him getting in a officer's face.

"Why are you raiding my job?" he demanded. "Are you one of those who're coming after my boss again?"

"No. Your office's guard is under arrest for threatening his ex drunkenly last night by text," the officer said.

"Oh. Okay. Sorry but we've had some problems."

"We don't have that noted."

Alex stared at him. "Yeah, I know." He nodded. They huffed but did take that guard with them. He went inside. "You good, boss?" No answer. He looked. No boss. He checked his schedule, no court date. No meeting. Not at home as his family was off at a safe location. He texted him and no answer. He went out there to stop an officer. "My boss may be missing." He looked at the guard. "Did you see him earlier?"

"No, Harris."

"At all?"

"Not since I left last night. He put something on your desk." Alex went to look then came out to show the officer, who called that in. "Bad?"

"Those hunters. Again." He stared at the officer, who shook his head with a sigh. "He's a good lawyer for many people."

"I'm sure he is." He looked him up. "Listed as detained by immigration?"

"He was born in Virginia. I don't know why."

The officer showed him that entry. "You can call them to see."

"I can do that and my twin. To make sure he actually made it onto the plane home." He walked off calling his twin first. Xander was in the airport, had no problems with Customs. Was about to board soon. He'd pay attention though. Alex hung up and locked up the office, taking that information to one of the community bars. He wasn't really allowed there, but.... The bouncer tried to stop him. "My boss got detained by immigration for being born in Virginia." He showed him the paperwork.

"Elliot's not in today, Harris."

"Anyone else and is he missing too? Since those two are drinking buddies?"

"That I don't know." He took them to show to someone inside and tell them that. He came back with the papers. "Elliot's ex said he was camping."

"The man hates dirt. Even puddles in the city. Why is he camping?"

"No clue." He sighed.

"Okay, well if I'm right, let me know so I can help somehow?"

"Your twin left earlier."

"He just got on a plane about ten minutes ago. I called him on the way over."

"No, his plane took off an hour ago." He looked it up. Alex did the same thing. "Or not. How...."

"Yeah, not sure. And hell, Xander got all the calm." The bouncer stared at him. He grinned. "Redheaded tornado wanted more people for grad and thought Xander *had* to be out of harm's way," he said quietly but sarcastically. "So we woke up this way." The bouncer sighed but nodded. He checked the bulletin board for the other two names, letting him see it. The bouncer winced but nodded. "So.... Do we have a response to this? Or do I get to go full on Xander?"

"You can't do that. He's got experience you don't."

"I may have left after the base raid, but that doesn't mean anything. You guys know I cleaned up a few messes that tried to get into my face." He walked off thinking. If they had a response from the community he'd help it. If not...well, he had a response for the community. People might hate that in DC though. He wasn't subtle.

Xander wasn't either but Alex tended to make a bigger mess and had a worse temper. Maybe he could use something owed as a poker debt? No that may be a bad thing. That was limited and may not get everyone out of there. Though he did stop in at another community bar to whisper in one guy's ear, getting a moan and a nod. "Can you?"

"I can't save your twin and boss," he said, looking at him. "Unless you want me to leave the kids?"

"Hell no. Get the kids out of there and to a healer or someone if you can. I'll go be a Xander I guess."

"Your twin's boss will get mad."

"I'm not employed by Giles. My boss is presently there. With my twin." He grimaced. "Gotta go fix that. He needs his owed debts." He walked off, going to the bank then to another type of bar, going to find someone. He smiled as he leaned down in front of him. "My twin and my boss both got captured with a lot of other people and kids. I have an owed debt getting the kids. Can you get my boss and twin? Or should I do it myself and make a mess?"

"They'd hate either option and we're under orders not to." Xander put the envelope with money. "Not even for that."

"Sure. I'll go solve that myself like a real Xander." He winked, picking up the money, using it to go buy something at the bar. The bartender winced when he saw him but oh well. He got the three things he wanted and went to go break into that science lab with razor wire and armed guards. He got one graze but that guy went down to a non-fatal shot.

He did try for non-fatal. He was also wearing an eyepatch. If they were confused that was fine. If not, that was fine. The patch was special. He got into the cells, getting his boss first. "Go. I've got someone rescuing the kids by wish."

"You...Harris?" he demanded.

"Yeah. Ya think?" He pointed. He went to free his twin. Other guards were showing up looking amused. Until the demon snot bomb went off and they all moaned as they fell down. He got Xander out, handing over the eye patch since he was missing his. "It's your special one."

"Great. They decided we're all immigrants for some reason."

"This isn't listed as an immigration facility. Go for it." He handed him the bag. "You can bum. I just bought them." He grinned. Xander took it with a smirk and went to handle a bitch. Alex went to force his boss out. "This is not a legal immigration facility, boss."

"If I leave they'll charge me with that."

"They can't do that. You were born in Virginia." The guy sighed at that. "Let's go? This isn't listed as an immigration facility. This is listed as a science lab."

"Shit." They got taken from there to a legitimate immigration facility by Alex's plot. Xander disappeared thanks to a witch with the rest of the kids in the facility, after telling the people guarding them where they were going. That got a crying mom and a happier few other people. Apparently his owed wish had only gotten the injured ones. Alex's boss walked up to the gate.

"Myself and the others were taken by supposed immigration agents, who weren't wearing the new ICE coats, and put in a facility that was listed as a science lab instead of an immigration facility. We need to make sure of our status before we're fully rescued please." The agent on the gate called the higher ups to come straighten that out. The boss told them where it was, and what had happened. They investigated, found it wasn't them, and they were all released.

He really had to talk to his secretarial guy. Though Alex was a nice enough guy. Xander was a pacing menace when he was bored or upset. Alex was much calmer. That's why that facility wasn't in ruins. He got a text and looked then brought it back to the gate agent. "There had been kids. These ones got evacuated to a healer's office uptown." He let him see the picture, making him heave. "Can you let them know that and the rest of the kids were taken to Cleveland's healers?"

"I can do that, sir. Thank you for letting us know." The lawyer nodded as he walked off looking calmer. He called that in and his boss went to investigate that too. Those kids were in bad shape. Those agents, if they were agents, were going to be in a world of hurt when they found them.


Alex came out of the healer's office, looking at the agents pulling in. "I'm sorry, people, but this is a healer's office. You are not going to be allowed to go harm injured people seeing a doctor. We're not supposed to resist but since I helped some injured kids get to another one earlier, I'm not going to let healers get hurt. They're incredibly precious."

One agent walked over. "Kid...."

Alex stared at him. "Not really."

"You're mouthy."

"And I'm right." He smiled. "And unless you have a warrant or a reason to need a healer, why are you here illegally?"

The agent blinked a few times. "You a lawyer?"

"Paralegal. Maybe later I'll go for the full ride."

"We can arrest you."

Alex grinned. "That's not legal either. If I'm stopping you from going in there illegally, that's not a problem for me legally. That's a problem for you for being here illegally. Which my twin will sing about."

"I heard he's in Africa."

"Now. I had to go make sure he got there earlier." He stared at the agent.

"Shit, you are him."

"I are him," he quipped back with a smile and a nod. "Yeah. I'm the hidden Harris spawn. Why?"

"We wanted to get notes on what was done to those kids." Alex looked at the three cars then at him. "We were hoping we wouldn't have to meet an army protecting them."

"I tried to hire some earlier but they didn't want to protect my twin for me. And I took them to Persimmons not here."

"Oh, okay. How bad?"

"I used an owed poker debt to have someone else move them from there. He said he could only move five, told me there were kids, and moved them when I agreed. Then we found more there so my twin kindly had a witch move them for him."

The agent shook his head. "That's probably illegal."

"To raid a lab facility for their experiments? Maybe. What's more illegal though?"

The agent considered that. "It's immigration."

"No, it's not." He showed him what he had pulled up earlier and copied a few times. "That's the site where they were. They went to an immigration facility to make sure they wouldn't get blamed for being rescued."

He took it to look at and sighed loudly. "No, that's not immigration at all. They destroyed the building in the rescue?"

"No. I made a huge hole in a wall when I couldn't get the doors open on the way out. It was still standing when we left."

The agent handed it back, going to talk to his boss then come back. "The other healers?"

"They got sent to Persimmons over on K."

"I can ask them for details so we can arrest the fake agents."

"Are they fake agents or agents faking being in another group?" Alex asked.

"I don't know yet. Either way it's still impersonating an immigration agent." He tipped his head. "You're rabid."

"Healers are precious and often hunted for their skills. So are seers."

"Oh." He nodded. "I didn't think about that. Okay, we'll go politely ask that healer."

"She does have a gang protecting her clinic."

"I can handle that." He got in to drive off, letting the others follow him.

Alex looked back at the staring receptionist, who smiled at him. "You're safer."

"We do try, Harris. I've alerted them that agents are showing up to talk about those kids. It was wise to let them evacuate the kids."

"I had no idea they had kids until I asked them to get my twin and my boss. I'm just glad he realized it." He stretched. "Need me?"

"No, our guards are coming back. Go rest."

"I should probably go to work and check the voicemail." He grimaced. "Though my boss is probably pissed at me." She nodded. "It figures. But if I have to find a new job, I'll figure it out. Maybe I will go to law school after all." He strolled off to grab his car so he could go to work. He walked in and nodded at the boss before sitting down and getting into things to handle the daily tasks. Including sorting the mail. He went to hand over his personal mail and then went back to typing.

"That was dangerous, Harris."

"It was necessary."

"Still dangerous."

"Yeah, I'm almost missing having my life threatened," he said dryly. "But I can't hack physical battles where I'm being put down by both sides."

His boss nodded at that. "Fine. Are you injured?"

"Not even more than a graze, I've already cleaned it up."

"Are you a paramedic?"

"Learned from Willow's mom's books. Just like she did."


He leaned over to look in there. "I've been doing my own stitches since I was six, Boss. I'm a bit better than I should be." He sat back up then decided to run a bug scanner around the office. He found a few he handed over then went to check the guard's usual seat to make sure he hadn't left anything. He went back to his own desk. "By the way, Billy got arrested for drunk texting his ex last night."


"That's when we found out you were missing."

"Even worse." He sighed. "Did you tell others?"

"Yeah. I went to the bar by the Cressida. Elliot's wife told the bouncer that he's camping. The bouncer and I thought that was weird so I looked it up on the bulletin boards."

His boss did that and groaned. "He hates dirt. Why would he be camping?"

"Wasn't he there?"



"Let us handle it, Harris."

"Okay. You'll ask if you need my help. I tried to hire someone more official but they had all been warned off."

"Even better and more charming. Do you think they'll turn that in?"

"It's not illegal to hire someone to rescue my twin."

"If they're under governmental holding....."

"That site was listed as a lab. Not immigration."

"I saw that."

"Those agents weren't ICE."

"Oh. Didn't think about that."

"I did. Because people hate my twin for doing the work he does." He sighed loudly. "I really wanted to talk to him about retiring but he likes his minis."

"Someday he'll get too battle tired too."

Alex leaned over to look at him. "It's very likely he'll die in the field." His boss nodded that was true. "Which I'll hate and have to go avenge." He sat up again. "Also I dropped the film in the box to be developed on the way out."

"My son will thank you for that. He was supposed to."

"Sure." He got back to menial tasks that he actually enjoyed doing. It wasn't hard and gave him a way to think about things. That's why he always did a proofread for things like twinkies showing up in things he typed.


Alex looked at the judge who had gotten the case for the peaceful community. "Yes, Your Honor, I am a fully graduated paralegal. The community has another legal team but they're busy with other things." He stared at him. "I'm also related to this issue as my twin is Watcher Xander Harris, the trainer for the slayers in Africa. I used to hunt with the team in Sunnydale until I retired a few years back."

"So you do know a good bit about the community." Alex nodded. "Are they in agreement?"

Alex looked at them. "We are, Your Honor. It gives us a way to stop the confiscation of our people. Multiple times already."

"I can see that being necessary." He let the sides call for their opening statements. The other side had a few lawyers. Alex listened then shook his head at one point, making himself a note. When it was his turn he stood up. "Who are they to say that looking different is illegal, Your Honor?"

The judge looked startled at that. "In the not so distant past, they said the same thing about people from the Asian continent, about Black people, about Native peoples. Many of the peaceful community have been on this plane for longer than humans." He looked at that side, who winced. "We can get written records based on the original calling of the slayer. One was presented to Congress."

He looked at the judge again. "Beyond that, even the ones that moved here, mostly to get away from horrible despots and wars, are living peacefully. Paying their taxes, running businesses. Being good citizens. Only about ten percent of them are out to cause problems.

"Maybe thirteen if you take the higher estimate of how many vampires there are on this plane since so many are just hungry and not really discriminate enough to feed from other sources that aren't running happy meals." He looked over then at the judge again. "Since when has the government had the right to decide if someone's sentient and sane?

"I thought we got rid of that with the eugenics movement, which was also racist. Also, we have proof that the government knew about the peaceful community before all this. They had a *charming* project in my former town where Rangers and some scientists decided to figure out their biology by means of torture.

"Literal torture, not figurative, ow that hurts sort. Of the pulling apart while alive. Of skinning while alive. Of burning while alive," he said, staring at them. "In fact two of the people at that table know about that project. One was on the clean up team and tribunals. The other was one of them." He looked at the judge again.

"If a being is sentient, is proven sentient, can go to college and pass classes better than I can, isn't that putting them on the same level as a standard whitebread American human? If we're against them because some are purple or blue or red, then that's really racist. I thought the government was against that." He sat down. "Also, my clients would like to hear about any family that may still be missing. All their victims weren't accounted for. If they're able to be saved we should do that sooner instead of later."

The judge nodded. "I can see those points. Is that project classified?"

"I didn't sign an NDA. No one's asked anyone on the Sunnydale team to sign any sort of non-disclosure agreement. Is it classified now? Yes. Am I under that restriction as I do not work with classified materials and I was there to help bring down the base? No because they didn't tell me I had to not talk about it."

"Oh. I see." He nodded. "The hard drives you presented?"

"They abandoned the base after we brought down the project, Your Honor. My twin and I went to strip the hard drives." He presented some papers. "This is the only notice in the system of that whole base. It's the frat house they were using as a cover as the base was underground. It does not mention the base. The college didn't mention the base. The town didn't mention the base. The government didn't mention the base.

"As we did not use their entry, we used the alternate entry in the woods, we did not trespass on government property. Also, that was weeks after they had abandoned it. They even left bodies there rotting. Didn't pick up their injured." He handed over pictures. "When we went in to check for other victims because we heard some were still missing we found that."

The judge grimaced as he looked at them. "They left the soldiers?"

"Yes, Your Honor. My twin dropped them at the local reserve base. Which did not want to deal with it so they left the bodies sitting there until we tipped off the local PD and they made them put them in a morgue."

"Oh, dear." He went back through the pictures, including the computer ones. "What did you take of it?"

"Mother board with the chips and the hard drives in case there was some sort of cryptography thing going on. We asked someone who knew more about computers than we do and she said to just in case."

"Is she going to testify?"

"I have not asked. Would she? I'd think so. When I told her about all this, she alerted people who got them shut down from this end of the problem."

"Oh." He nodded, handing the pictures back. Alex waved a hand so he put them into evidence. "How sure are you that two of the government's side were there?"

"Pictures of the tribunal?" He handed it over with a smirk. "Also, the duty jacket of one of them." He handed that over.

"Oh, he was listed as permanent duty assignment, Homeland, but he went to law school." He nodded, looking over there. Then at Alex. "I may not have a classified rating high enough for this, Mr. Harris."

"You do. The project's currently closed and sealed but it's rated at ten, Your Honor."

"I do have a security rating above that, yes." He looked at the other side. "I know you have motions to suppress most of their evidence?"

"It was illegally gotten, Your Honor. Even if they abandoned it, it was still a base." That paperwork was handed over. "That is not what I have." He let the judge have those, which gave them to Xander.

"Your Honor, this is dated six weeks ago," Alex said. He pointed. "That date there is six weeks ago. When they tried to restart it and that address is not in Sunnydale. That street did not exist." He looked at him. "The Initiative base was under the college's eastern edge and into the woods. There was also no such road in Sunnydale." He handed them back. "Is that where the current ones are?" The lawyer shuddered.

The judge looked at him. "Can you prove that? I know Sunnydale is destroyed due to something."

Alex turned on his phone and pulled up a map with a list of roads. He let the judge have it. "As of when it closed. It hasn't been updated."

"How would you know?" the other lawyer demanded.

"Because I lived there my whole life until I got to DC," he said sarcastically. "I got four months of a road trip after graduation, got stuck in Oxnard due to car problems, but that's over twenty years of being the kid who searched around town, got into everything, found so many wrong things the mayor actually tried to stop us from doing it. Because we found his gold stash and called a librarian, who called a reporter, who told the mayor. We got given a certificate and got a picture in the paper."

"There was only one of you," he sneered.

Alex nodded. "Yeah. My twin and I were split one night by magic. The witch had problems and thought we needed more people for graduation but never planned to put us back together. So yes, I am the magical twin of Xander Harris." He grinned. "Good job finding that!" He held up two thumbs. "But I'm also my own person. Have been for years.

"The city swore up and down we were twins and made sure the proper paperwork was there. The state of California just nodded because Sunnydale did." He smiled. "You can ask Rosenburg how she did that. Though there was an incident where we were triplets for a few days thanks to a troll with a hammer. When you deal with magic sometimes things aren't normal."

His boss stared at him then nodded. "We knew that, Your Honor. We share information among the communities."

Alex nodded. "I've kept in touch with a great many beings I used to know out in Sunnydale. I play poker with a few."

The lawyer slumped, looking at the judge. Who nodded. "You do have a legal birth certificate?" Alex handed it over from his bag. "Oh, I see they did give you one. Is that a corrected copy?"

"Willow forged our original one because my mother was too drunk to file her own birth certificate at first. The school didn't care, they were dirty to the mayor too, but Willow got worried it'd cause problems so made one and got the date wrong. I did have the date corrected for both of us to our acknowledged birthday."

"How drunk was your mother?"

"She was apparently drunk enough that she didn't realize she was in labor, just complained while mopping up the new fluids, and called the paramedics to save her from the thing trying to eat her leg. Which wasn't the kraken but was the infant she gave birth to. She had no idea she was even pregnant. Then again, she was a good quart of gin a day sort."

"Oh." The judge let out a shudder. "I've seen bad parents."

"We did amazing raising ourselves," Alex agreed happily with a smile. "Even if we did go everywhere in town and spotted so many wrong things. And kind of drove a librarian nuts for not having comic books."

The judge shook his head. "You're very weird."

"Yes but they demanded I show how things were out there," Alex shot back, staring at that lawyer. "Feel better?" He shrank away from him. He looked at the judge again. "Anyway, that date is still six weeks ago, that area is not in Sunnydale, and it'll be something I research later on, Your Honor."

"How did you leave the town?"

"I looted from some vampire clans, some of the shiny things that were laying in crypts that didn't belong to anyone, set up a trust fund I split with my twin, and then left. I retired after the last base raid on the Initiative."

"I can see why," he admitted, going back over the government's motions. "None of your paperwork pertains to Sunnydale, gentlemen." He looked at them. "It's all that same address."

"There was a small attempt to get back to that project but it was stopped within weeks and we assumed they were talking about that, Your Honor."

Alex looked over at him. "In Georgia? They didn't get more than three people before someone higher up got them free." He sat up again.

"No, not Georgia." He sighed. "In Tulsa."

"Tulsa had thirteen beings that had been shipped off from Sunnydale," a demon in the theater seats said, standing up. "My group ended that one and got them free, Your Honor. There was evidence of two others but we informed the healers so they could notify families." He sat down. "That was also not at that address as that one was actually illegally on Tribal lands and the address wasn't a street, it was a county route. I can look that up if you need it."

"Please. I'd like to see evidence from all the other versions." He frowned at Alex then at the others. "I'm going to allow this until you can show me proof of which incident those are from. This lawsuit only covers the group in Sunnydale and the current goings on." They nodded, making notes on what to look up. "Okay. Onto the second motion. It comes from Mr. Harris' side.
"I see they're asking for a restraining order to keep the government from presently confiscating people. Have they?" Alex handed over sheets with pictures, including incident reports. He took it with a sigh to look at. "That's at least less disturbing but still bad." He looked at one then at the other side. "Was there not already a restraining order?"

"It ran out yesterday, and we are not aware of an official government group, Your Honor." He stood up. "We're aware there is one. We're aware some are actually agents. They're pretending to be from agencies they're not from. Many have been arrested. I have no idea how many are missing and we agree that there should be a restraining order until this is settled into law. Especially with some of the atrocities of the past groups. We don't want to make Mr. Harris have to rescue anyone else."

"I've only rescued people twice," he said with a smirk. "But my twin's fine."

"Good. We heard he's having a huge problem this week down there."

"Two actually, back to back so he'll handle one, fly to the other, get a nap on the plane, and handle it."

The lawyer nodded. "We honor Mr. Harris and his twin for their service but we all agree that no one should be in custody until this is settled. If there are, it is not an official group sanctioned by the government."

"Then how do we stop it?" the judge asked. "Will another restraining order work?"

"I'm hoping," the lawyer said. "We did agree to not fight against that motion, Your Honor. None of us want to torture beings who aren't human. We may not want them in the US. Even if they were born here. Even if they're good citizens who just look funny. But we do not want to torture them."

The judge nodded. "Good. Find information that group for me?" He looked at Xander, who looked at the others, who handed up what they had. "Yours, Mr. Harris?"

"I only know of one and I rescued those kids last night. They were trying to confiscate an egg nursery. Only one egg got moved and the caretakers said they think it'll be okay."

"That's good of you." He looked it over and sighed. "That's where that address is." He let the lawyer see that. Who sighed but nodded at that information. "I'm going to halt their work. One way or another. The US is to arrest them to stop them if they must, or stop them however they must, and hand any beings back to their peoples. Any particular hospital?"

"We have healers set up around the city," the one in the theater seats said calmly and quietly. "We don't usually go to human hospitals."

"I can understand that." He wrote out that order. "We have one last motion. I see paperwork to suspend any talk about that prior project. Which is the hinge of the case itself." He looked at them. "I'm going to look into the legality of classification before I rule on that. So if the President comes to tell me to butt out, I have to rule without that information."

"We can talk about it without talking about them," Alex offered. "They were still captured and tortured, Your Honor."

"That's not exactly how that works. But it has been allowed in the past. I'll check on that and tell you tomorrow at two." He banged his gavel and they stood up when he did to go back to his office with the evidence piles and boxes.

Alex sat down with a sigh, looking at his boss. "You're doing okay," he admitted. "Bit scattered but you're just like that, Harris." He patted him on the shoulder. "Going for the full ride?"

"Thinking about it." He packed up his things and put his bag back on his shoulder. "Let me go make mac'n'cheese. I deserve something gooey for dinner." They nodded and let him do that while they gathered to talk.


Buffy walked into the court room a few days later with a baby in her arms and looking messed up. "Alex." He hopped up to take the baby from her since it wouldn't let her go. "They tried to grab a nursery center in Cleveland," she said quietly. "We rescued most of them but two are still missing. She's a twin and her twin's one of the missing. Their little sister is the other. Willow can't track them. We're hoping your twinness can help."

"I'll see what I can do. Sit, Buffy." He looked at the judge. "Your Honor, I'm needed to help find her twin and little sister." He looked down. "You can grip me all you want. I know about being a twin." He kissed her on the forehead. "We'll let a healer see you as soon as we walk out of here." He looked at him. "May I call for a time out?"

"You may and I'll allow that. How do you plan on finding her?"

"My twin's known as the bastard protector of slayers, Your Honor. I can hunt just as well as he can." He gathered his bag and walked off with the kid. Buffy followed. They went to a healer, who took the baby to treat immediately. They were all paying attention to the hearing. Alex got his pendant out and put it around her neck, making her calm down at the energy she could cling to. He looked at the healer. "Let me hunt?"

"Be careful. They'd consider you one of us," she warned.

"Nah. Xander has the mermaid taint, not me." He grinned and left, locking his bag in the car. Buffy went with him. One of the demon clubs tried to stop them but Buffy stared. "There's missing kids," Alex told him.

"We heard. They're not local, Knight." He stared at him. "Are you going to turn into your twin?"

"Nah. I have all the temper. He got the weapons." He grinned. "Any idea which state?"

"We've heard rumors about Nebraska. We've heard rumors about Plath, North Dakota. We can't be sure."

"Is Mortimer in and will he do a tracking for us?"

"I can ask. He is behind the bar." He went to ask, bringing out a small coaster. "Blue is closer." Buffy smiled and patted him on the arm as she followed Xander and called the witches.

They got there and Alex pulled out a few hidden things he carried. That whole base went up but the innocents were safe. Those demons were really nice to stay confined. They didn't find the kids so went to the other one. That took a few hours to trace around town. When they did, the locals came out to help them. No kids but they had evidence on where they were. Buffy took that for the court case.

Alex got sent there with a weapon he bummed from his brother's storage area. The kids were mostly okay, bit injured but would live. The humans.... The locals decided to come arrest them for him when the cops from the last area called them to warn them he was coming to help those kids. Which was nice of them. He got the three kids he had found back with him. Buffy sighed, taking the extra. It struggled so Xander took her back to cuddle. "It's probably my hellmouth taint," he told her.

"Could be. Healers?"

"None nearby," an officer said, coming over. "Are they good?"

"Maybe," Alex said. "Probably." He looked at the officer. "Can you clean up my mess?"

"Gladly. Who're you, just for the records?"

"Alex Harris. I retired from hunting about five years ago now but they have stolen kids." That got a nod. "Let me get them back to DC and a healer. Their sister's there." Buffy called and the coven sent them back to the courtroom since it was early but they were there. "Sorry, I meant for them to send me to the healer. Boss, get a healer? They're sucking at my hellmouth taint."

"Already calling," someone said, coming up to help. "They'll live, Harris."

Alex nodded. "That's what I wanted. The one on my back? I think she's asleep."

"I'm hoping she is. She's clearly got head trauma with that dent."

"Your Honor," the government's head lawyer complained. "This is highly prejudicial."

"I did not plan for them to send me here," Alex told him. "I expected to land closer to a healer. But the witches are tired and so are we." Buffy nodded, letting the healer in when she got there and making sure she could hold the kids. She went with her.

"You stay," the healer ordered quietly. "It's too important." He nodded and she took the kids with Buffy and a few guards. Buffy rushed back to hand over those papers then went again.

Alex looked at himself. "Sorry, Your Honor. This was not a planned stop." He put the papers down on the table. "My bag's in the car." He sat down. "Sorry about the sweat and smoke damage."

"Did you find that one's sibling?" he asked.

"Yes, two of those were. The other one's a child of a member of the Demonic Council of Cleveland. Her first birthday had pictures all over the underground because she's a sweet little hellion that her parents tried very hard to have."

"I can understand how that happens. I know humans who've done that." He looked. "Are those being presented?"

"These are from the desk area in one of the facilities we raided. I haven't looked through it yet." He flipped through it. "Aww, they have plans of blaming things on Xander." He let the other side's lawyers see that. They groaned. "He wasn't in the US then. That was about two weeks after he went to Africa." He went back to looking then handed them over. "We raided that one facility to find the kids based on that evidence."

The judge read through it, taking that one sheet. He snorted. "They think your twin's twenty-nine."

"I think we're twenty-six, nearly twenty-seven," Alex said, looking over there. Then at the judge. Who was shaking his head. "Those were not legally gathered as we went through the desk to find the other facility. The local police arrested those ones we found."


"Injured mostly but yes. Even if I have to shoot another human I tend to go for injuring instead of killing unless I have no choice."

"That's good of you." The judge went over it. "Mr. Harris, give me an end game of your plan."

"Stopping all this, legal acknowledgment that they're sentient beings who can decide things for themselves, and giving the families the information on their still missing members at the baseline. At best prompting a way for those who're here through illegal immigration a way to fight for citizenship.

"Acknowledging that some of them are already citizens and entitled to the rights and responsibilities of all human citizens. We'd *like* to see these sort of projects stopped for good. We figure that'll take a different court case. Or someone with really big shoes using them as suppositories. We're not sure if anyone wears that big of shoes however."

The judge smiled. "You're right about the last one. Path to citizenship, that would probably take a higher level court."

"I have no doubt that the other side will try to appeal whatever you think, Your Honor. Or we'll have to."

"Possibly." He stared at him then at the others. "I find most of you are sentient. The ones I've talked to mostly have been. One grunted a bit but I was told he had problems with English." He looked at the other side.

"No, Your Honor, we do not have a problem with those. The president himself said it was going to be necessary to stop things and we were to agree they were sentient, some were born here, some immigrated here, and that the present plans are bad. If we find any information we can hand it over."

"The healers keep track of the census," one of the ones with Xander said. "They're the ones that gave us information about any family in Sunnydale." That got a nod. "We are still missing at least three hundred beings, Your Honor, just from Sunnydale."

"I understand that and I agree you should be told what happened to your relatives and if there's a way to relocate the remains to be allowed to do that. I see no problem with sentience or naturally being born here. Full legal rights....should be assumed but may not be." He stared at Xander. "You started this for them they said."

"I did. It was important to protect the community. As you've seen."

"I have." He nodded a bit. "Not asking for redress?"

Alex looked at his team, who all shook their heads. "They said no, Your Honor. That would also get a lot more people mad than this will."

"Point." He nodded. "You have laid out evidence that they're sentient. That they're mostly good beings. You included crime statistics."

"Done by the healers as well."

"That's nice of them. No courts?"

Alex's boss smiled and nodded. "Of course we do. It's a bit hidden within our own city council. That's where he got the figures from."

"Interesting. Do you go by US laws?"

"Ours are a bit more strict since outing the community will often be a death sentence."

"On Mr. Harris?"

"No. We cannot punish him for protecting the people of our community. He made capable, quiet, calm arguments to protect us. He's done much more huffy things in the past."

"I've heard." He looked at Alex, who just smiled. "Was it you or your twin that blew that one building?"

"I just blew a hole in the wall since the door wouldn't open for us," Alex said. "It was standing when I removed the people they had supposedly arrested for being illegal immigrants. By the records, ICE said it went down six hours later."

"Wonderful. Is your twin into weapons?"

"Everyone looks hot with artillery, Your Honor," he quipped with a smile, getting swatted by his boss. "You can't handle an invasion level problem with just a sword."

"No, you can't," he agreed. "All right, I'm going to agree with the basics here. The community is to be handed any information found about their members that were taken and/or harmed. Every family deserves the right to know. They are noted as sentient beings with the full rights and responsibilities of humans. That does include paying taxes and all that.

"While I find some of you very weird, and a few a bit worrying because flesh eaters bring up bad associations in my mind, I find most of you to be generally pleasant, sensible beings able to make your own decisions. I cannot grant you the full range of citizenship, that takes an act of Congress, but I can give you legal rights so you can do things you need to do legally. Being born here means you're automatically US citizens and there's no reason to doubt that.

"Stopping the problems, I will order them stopped. It may not end them all but it does give you an order that can be enforced when someone finds another one starting. I hope the government is done with that but I'm guessing we're all realistic that ending this current one will take some time and energy. Hopefully the president will agree." He looked at them then nodded.

"I find you a bit weird, but I say the same thing about teenagers in the malls. Really I find you less weird than some of the kids I've seen in malls." He signed the order and handed them over to be handed out. "I wish you luck with any future legal proceedings and stopping those groups. Have a good day, people." They broke out in cheers so he got to go back to his office happier.

Alex smiled at his boss. "Go for the full ride, kid. Though I'm moving the office to Alexandria. It's safer and the wife said so."

"I can find another job while I take a few classes as I can, Boss. I'll miss having you nag about my hair." He gave him a hug and packed up, going to find his car and then go home to shower, calm down, and celebrate.

The demons all smiled at that and led the way to celebrate this. Someone would try to interfere but the local slayer kicked him on the ass as she walked behind him. He huffed off since a girl had dared to overpower him. She leaned into the bar. "Giles, Faith, and Buffy all said congrats," she called in.

"Willow said the same thing but it was through a pencil since she was writing in a magic book she shouldn't have again. Let me know if you have problems or need help finding people. That's my job since Alex is retired." She waved with a grin. "Got my number hanging up?" A few nodded.

"Cool. I've got a kegger to go party at because vampires are going to take over the college again apparently." She strolled off to handle that. It was her duty after all. Not that she didn't enjoy it sometimes. Maybe she'd bag herself a hotty college boy.

The demons got to be happy with all that.


The next time Alex ran into DiNozzo, it was at his college. He had to take a mandatory lesser level class while doing some of his mandatory upper level classes for law school. It had been a peaceful few years. The hunting of the peaceful community had finally been stopped. Alex was getting his nicely wanted retirement from fighting.

A few people had tried to loot Sunnydale before he could but most of them had been killed by leftover vampires. He had gotten another two weeks to finish his cleaning out so he was set. It was a decent enough life. And then he ran into the one he used to protect. He saw the look in his direction but played it cool. If an agent was here, that was probably a big thing instead of him retiring as well. He'd talk to him later.

After class DiNozzo stopped him with a look. "You're going higher?" he asked with a smile.

"Law school. I'm a second year but I had to take a few mandatory lower ones. Corporate law is less stress for me but in a new stressful way as I hate math."

Tony patted him on the shoulder. "You'll manage at least a C. I allow calculators."

"Thanks." He stared at the room then at him. A woman came in and he nodded. "Sorry, I'll quit monopolizing my teacher. Never enough fun times outside of work things and even though I'm confused he can fix me later." He walked off. "Have a good day, Prof, and thanks."

She stopped him. "My father has a picture of you."

He grinned. "Does it have an eyepatch wearing me?" She nodded slowly. "That's my twin. He's the guy training slayers in Africa."

"Oh." She nodded. "That's interesting."

"I retired from all that years ago. I'm not meant for battles. I'm meant to be pretty, smart, and do other sorts of good things for people." He grinned. "But I'm sure my twin would say hi if he knew."

"I'll let him know." Alex smiled and left them to talk. "He's ...interesting."

"He is. I met him years ago in a club." She nodded at that. "He's in the law program but had to take a few lesser mandatories."

"That happens." She walked off with him once he had his things so they could go eat on the lawn. They saw that goofy young one chasing someone and pouncing them then getting up to frisk them and give whatever he had found back to someone else.

"Thank you, Alex," the girl said, hugging him. "He's an idiot."

"I had an ex like that. He thankfully died a few months later while being pouty and drunk. Hopefully yours just grows up." He glared at the guy, making him run off. He walked her off. "C'mon, I'll make sure you get back to your dorm."

"Thanks." She let him walk her off. "I'm in the same hall as Eustace."

"I remember her. She needed some walking home too. There's a lot of failed young men at this college for some reason." She giggled but nodded. "Hopefully they all grow up after this." He nodded at the guard coming their way. "I got her keys and phone back from the ex that stole them just now. He went for a run."

He waved a hand in the air in the right direction. "Another failed male specimen that even the biology department can't figure out the classification of." The girl giggled at that, hiding it on his arm. "They really can't. They can't be human with how they are."

"I'm sure the biology department will enjoy naming their species," the guard said dryly, looking at her. "Are you going to press charges?"

"You guys said I couldn't get a restraining order," she said sarcastically. "So I guess I'll just have to ask Alex to walk me back to my dorm a few times."

The guard sighed but nodded. "We'll see what we can do. Have you filled out forms?" She nodded. "I'll look it up, Miss...."


"I'll look that up and have a talk with that failed male being. I'd hate my son to be that way." She smiled and let Alex walk her past him.

"Thank you," they said together. Then shared a grin.

She giggled but it was nice. The guard went to ask the teacher if he had seen them. "He's one of the cross country team," he said. "He's in my intro class."

"That'll help as well. Thank you, Professor." He went to report that and look up her reports. She had reported him twice. Both for stalking. Great. Just what the college needs.


Alex walked around the arguing set a few weeks later, shaking his head. "Get off the sidewalk before the kids in the wheelchairs have to run you over!" They flinched but did that. "Thank you!" He went to be irritated with his teacher at her office. "What did I do wrong? I wrote the paper on a case I helped defend." He handed it over and the information from the case. "I'm the one that started it, that filed it, and that did all the work. I know exactly what I did as a paralegal."

The teacher blinked. "It's distasteful," she said.

"Well, oh well!" He stared at her. "I don't put up with hateful shit against anyone! And you graded me down for it." He leaned on the doorframe. "You hating the peaceful community is *your* problem and it's not supposed to be brought into your job by what I know."

"I can flunk you from the program, Harris."

"You can *try*. I can appeal." She glared. He stared back. "Unlike half the trust fund kids in the program, I'm fully aware of all my rights. And responsibilities. This program is already racist in a lot of ways. Including against women being in it as we've got two and they both have male first names. I'm hoping women find out and sue you guys for it."

He grinned. "I don't need to suck up to you for grades, Professor Talbot, but I'll be damned if you're going to leave remarks on my paper that I didn't know what I was writing about when it's something I personally handled. I will appeal that grade and that paper and all that you've graded unfairly this semester, and help the two women who made it in do the same thing since you've counted them down too."

"Harris," another teacher yelled up the hall.

"Bite me. She decided to count down my paper about the civil rights case for the peaceful community and told me I had no idea what I was talking about when I handled it as a paralegal." He looked at her again. The head of the program was huffy but Alex just stared at him too. He took the paper back to hand to him. "I'm the paralegal that handled the case. I'm fairly certain I know what I did in my own history."

The chair looked at the paper's remarks and grimaced. "Well, that's distasteful."

"No, it's downright racist," he said dryly. "The same as how she doesn't allow women into the program is. Or any member of the peaceful community."

"I don't think we've had any apply."

Alex stared at him. "They know which colleges are prejudice against them. The same as I'm sure women do and don't apply here because she and the others don't let them in. And when we do get a rare one, they basically run them over and out of the program, including glorifying sexual assault like this one and Dr. Loranda have."


"I don't like racists of any form. Especially when it steps into my face. And I corrected Dr. Loranda on his too." The chair winced at that reminder. "I'm going to appeal her grading me at all. It's clear she's got a bias."

"It is with those remarks." He looked it up. "You were the paralegal."

"I was," he said proudly. "And then I decided to take the advice to go for the full ride. Maybe I should've picked a less...closed minded program but this is closest to my house."

"You're on financial aid anyway," the teacher sneered, standing up. "I can have that ended."

"Lady, I'm worth more than the college has in emergency trust funds," he said dryly with a smirk. "Even if I lost it all tomorrow, I can survive that way. I worked for years before moving to DC. Some of us are *real* people, not fake ones like you." The chair glared at him. "She's the one that's trying to get people interested in a reality show about lawyers. No one wants to watch us read law books!"

"No, probably not. She's not wealthy enough for a real housewives sort of show either." He looked at him. "Yours may be."

"The last woman I dated tortured men for being dicks to their women," he said dryly, smirking a bit. "She really loved it too. Gave it up for us while she was with me and my twin, but then went right back to it when they broke up." The chair winced. "Anyanka was just like that. It was her hobby that she turned into a career."

"I've heard her muttered about," he complained quietly.

Alex smiled. "I'm actually very bi and my last boyfriend was last month but he got pouty I didn't want or need a sugar baby. I wanted a real relationship." He shrugged. "It happens. I'll find someone somewhere someday."

"I..." The chair nodded. "You may be the only gay person in the program, Harris."

He shrugged. "That's fine. As long as I don't have to deal with racist crap. Like I am today with her."

"Sometimes you'll have to work with lawyers like that in the field."

Alex stared at him. "No I won't. Because if it starts around me I'll give it back. They'll give up sooner than I will. I had to deal with bitchy women who thought I was less than useful who were friends for *years*. I can outlast any little racist brat on the job and sneer at them until they give up and hike off to suck their thumb under Mommy's skirts."

"Lawyers are stubborn," he noted.

Alex grinned. "Last month, my twin brother outlasted six weeks of battle to finally get the big problem that kept thinking he was weak. I'm pretty sure I'm just as stubborn." The chair slumped, staring at him oddly. He grinned. "Yeah, my twin's a watcher. The guy in Africa actually."

"Wow. I've only heard about him a few times."

"They don't report on his battles over here."

"So he does that and you do this?"

"I retired to do other sorts of good things for humanity."

"That's reasonable. I suppose that means you're not going to be a prosecutor?"

"Not likely." He grinned and shook his head. "I hate the taste of ass so I'd never kiss it that way."

The chair nodded. "That is an often necessary lunch in the law field." He looked at the teacher. "Has she had any other papers?"

"We have one more due and one test."

"They're demons!" she shouted. "They're evil by definition!"

"Mostly they're just normal sorts who look different," Alex countered reasonably. "Some are from other dimensions, some are from here, but they look different. The evil kind you mostly have to summon. Seen those a few times." He grinned. "Though some have wanted power, and a lot went to law school. Wolfram and Hart prove that." He smiled at her. "By the way, you may want to warn anyone going to them that their contracts have soul debt clauses."

The chair moaned. "I've warned them all to read all contracts. They should know how by the time they're graduating. If they did not, that was a choice they made."

"Some lawyers may not mind," Xander agreed. "But still, a few good ones were desperate because people like her didn't want more women in the field of law. I had to warn her myself last year. Then got her to look at a few light sided firms."

The chair nodded. "That figures. Have you decided on a specialization area?"

"Business it seems. I can do some of the defense work if I need to, it's my minor and I'm taking those classes, but business law seems to be ...cleaner to me mostly. And I can help people who're setting up new businesses. Plus help those who're fighting racist ideology about their businesses."

"That's fine," the chair agreed. He looked at his teacher, who stormed off and slammed her door. "Was that an admission of guilt and resignation?" he called after her.

"YES! I REFUSE to work with those sorts!" She pointed at Alex then got onto the elevator to stomp off. Unfortunately she got hit by a car in the parking lot. Not fatally but enough to break her leg.

Alex looked out at the screaming. "She ran into a car backing out." He sighed. "She'll try to sue me for that I'm sure." He rolled his eyes. "She was also teaching against the book and against the laws in her specialist class on state's rights." He walked off. "Can that paper be regraded?"

"Yes, Harris. I can do that."

"Thank you, Sir. Should I tell the other students?"

"I'll be looking over all the papers. I'll make that announcement. And look at how she's staffed our students." He went to talk to his other teachers. He clearly needed to hire. And to fix a few problems before the program got sued.


Alex had gotten done yelling back at the incel frat house's stunt saying sexual assault was a great thing and had to hurry to class. Though he got stopped by two women fighting against someone with a gun. "Gun!" he shouted as he pounced the guy. It got him off the girls and the guy tried to swing on him so he fought back.

He had upped his hand-to-hand with classes from the college. He finally got the guy down and out, knocking him out with a punch to make sure, and looked up. His accounting professor was there with the girls, guarding them. "They good?" he asked.

"Fine," DiNozzo said. "You?"

"I'm fine." He checked himself. "Yeah, I'm good." He got up with a groan. "My knees hate kneeling though." He walked over. "You two okay?" he asked gently. One was crying but nodded. "Okay. Let's sit. I'm sure there's some sort of officer coming soon to yell at me for pouncing him for having a gun on you two."

They got them onto a bench with their bags they had dropped. Alex's bag got pulled over too. He walked over to grab the gun and put it on the ground near them. "So he can't get it again." They nodded, letting out the crying now. Two security staff ran over. "His gun's over here," he called with a point. "He was holding it on these two women when I spotted him and yelled about the gun then pounced to beat his ass."

"He did a really good job," DiNozzo said happily. "I only had to guard the two young women."

"Thank you, Professor. Which one?"

"Accounting." He smiled and handed over a card. That got a nod and it was put into the record of this.

The other officer looked at Alex. "You did what?"

"Spotted him holding a gun on them so I noted it loudly, so others could run away, and then I beat his ass."

"Oh." He nodded. "Is that how you're supposed to handle that?"

"Yes." He stared at him, making him back up. "Be damned if I want to help someone not die today. Pouncing him meant he dropped the gun. Beating his ass was very stress relieving from law classes. And it kept him from going after the two girls again." He looked over at the sound of movement. "He's got another one!"

He moved the officer and kicked the guy, making the gun go off into the ground and the guy got cuffed by the security officers. They patted him down and got his knife too. Alex pointed. "His first one I dropped there. That way he couldn't reach it. Didn't even think about fingerprints though."

"That's actually sensible and most people wouldn't think about leaving fingerprints," DiNozzo said, patting him on the shoulder. "Calm down. They're here now and can kick his ass."

Xander nodded. "True." He looked around. "Can you guys tell Professor Lava Brain that I was here and not just skipping?"

"Yes," the security agents agreed.

"Soloman in Legal?" one asked. Alex nodded with a sigh, sitting down next to the girls. One hesitated so he pulled her closer to cuddle, helping her calm down. He let her go when she calmed down, looking at the other one to see if she wanted a hug too. She shook her head so he just sat there looking like the good boy he tried to be.

The security guys came over to take statements about why the guy had the gun pulled on them. It made their week that they had stopped a mugging gone sideways. The law student was helpful and wrote the report for his part for them. The professor cooperated and was pleasant to them. The girls got walked back to their dorms and they got to call three teachers to tell them their students had missed for a reasonable reason.

Alex showed up after class, shrugging when the teacher stared at him. "The security guys called."

"I got that voicemail just now. You did what?"

"The guy had a gun on two girls in the quad! What did you want me to do? I relieved some stress from class beating him but otherwise I had just been picking on the sexual assault is good protest on my way to class. I turned around and there was a guy with a gun."

The teacher sighed. "Are you in trouble?"

"They didn't say I was in trouble for knocking him down and out. If I am I can argue against that."

"Point," she admitted. "Fine. You have a paper due in a week, still. We went over that next chapter today, Harris." He grinned and handed over the paper with a smile. She looked through it. "Your formatting is weird."

"That's what the computer considers legal formatting. I can reprint in regular college formatting."

"No, that is weird legal formatting. Word?" He nodded. "That figures." She glanced through it again. "You're missing a conclusion?"

"It's not concluded yet." He looked over and pointed. "Then I laid out the possible conclusions. It won't be out for three months."

"Point." She read it over and nodded. "I'll accept this." She stared at him. "Not exactly the point of the assignment."

"I could've just presented my paper on the case I helped with. I didn't think it was legal and the chair hated that it lost him a teacher."

"Oh, that one. I heard later on from gossip." She gave him a pointed look.

"I hate all racism. In all forms."

"Good. That makes you a nicer person to be around." She walked off. "I'll accept this."

"Thank you." He skipped off. "I'm doing the three cases against the slayers for the bigger paper."

"That's reasonable with who I've heard you are," she agreed, still walking. "Make it reasonable please."

"Yes, Professor." He skipped off to get ice cream because he now had the rest of the day off. He got his ice cream but they were having a 'debate' in the caf about consent. He paused by it. "I always say 'I wanna fuck you' or something like that. If they don't answer 'yes' then I can pull back and make sure of what they want to do instead.

"If you can't manage that, the answer's always no and you're the asshole who was going to rape someone who couldn't give consent. Not like you have to be formal and ask in proper english. Just 'you want some of my dick in you' and if they say yes, hey, you've got consent," he told them. They were so young. He had been that young and he remembered being that young but damn! They looked at him.

He nodded. "It's not that hard to get consent. If they can't consent then that's rape. If they're drunk, asleep, unconscious, whatever. It's yes or all no." He shrugged, going back to licking his popsicle. "It's easy enough to do in a club's bathroom, in an apartment, in a car, in a park, wherever you're getting down and funky.

"Do you want some of me, yes is all you need to do. Unless you're into something kinky and then it's a talk beforehand about it by the standards of that community." He walked off again. "Don't be like that frat that was just chanting loudly about how they like to sexually assault people."

"No, we're hoping not to," one agreed, looking confused. He looked at the others. "I mean, he's right." The others nodded they agreed. "It doesn't have to be a huge talk. Well, I guess some kinkier things may need one for some reason but I have no idea about that. Not my community."

The others nodded they were with that and got down to their signs about consent, using his words for it. Younger students would understand that easily enough.


Alex was stopped by Jeanne, Tony's girlfriend. "Hey, what's up, girlfriend of my professor?"

She blinked a few times. "My father wanted to talk to you, Xander."

"No, I'm Alex. Xander's still in Africa." He grinned slightly. "We're twins."

"He said there's only one of you."

"And yet, I was here when there was a battle just the other day. I can't be in two places at once. I'm not quite that mythical yet."

"I...." She called her father. "Father, he insists they're twins."

Alex leaned over to wave. "Yeah, my twin Xander is down there, sir. I can't be in two places at once. I'm great but not mythical yet." He grinned. "Xander's missing an eye, I'm not."

"I can see you're not. I have worked with your twin."

"That's great! The girls could use a lot of help. Thank you for that." He leaned out of view and shrugged. "I retired from all that years ago. Or else my twin probably wouldn't be missing an eye."

Her father said something so she nodded and hung up. "I guess that makes sense. He wanted to talk to your twin about future business things."

"I'm sure Xander would like that. The girls need all the help they can get sometimes." He smiled slightly. "He said they're all little smartass hellions but he loves them like sisters."

"I guess you do get close to people you're training." She smiled. "I'll make sure Father knows that better." She looked around. Alex looked and pointed. "Oh, that is his car. Thank you." She walked off.

He wrote his twin an email and sent it. Just in case that was a bad thing. He was still there when he saw Jeanne's father talk Tony into his limo instead of his car. That set off his Batman senses. He watched them drive off and considered calling someone but he had no idea who Tony was working for right now.

He went for his own car, then decided to be smart and check the car. "Oh, fuck!" he shouted loudly. "SECURITY!" he bellowed. One came jogging over. "Bomb!" he called when he got closer. "Under the engine, behind the left front wheel." The guard stopped and called that in. Alex walked off grimacing. He decided to call someone, who did track Tony.

It wasn't good and they also sent someone to pick him up so he could track them himself. He got there as Tony got shoved out of the car and then the car blew up. He raced over to help Tony, knowing the people in the car were dead. "Hey," he said, helping him. "Injured?" Tony nodded a tiny bit. "Okay. Let's get you back to my place and safer. Anything huge that'll definitely need the ER?"

"Need stitches," he said, sounding fuzzy.

"I can do that." He grinned at the odd look. "Had to learn from a friend's mom's medical books when I was little. I'm actually really good at it but my twin has more practice." He helped him up and the team took them back to his house. "Thanks, guys."

"Welcome, Harris," they agreed, going back to report to their boss.

Alex got Tony onto the couch and got his medical kit, coming back to treat the injuries, get him some ice for his sore head, and then handed him the phone. He moaned at that. "Want me to call Gibbs?"

"He's going to growl."

"If he hears you got blown up, he'll growl more."

"Point." He called the one he was undercover for. "I'm alive. They're not." He hung up and sighed. "I need to tell someone in the FBI and I don't know his number."

"So tell my contact who stares in horrified awe at me dating," he quipped, going to look outside. He ran out there to their car, nodding. "DiNozzo needs you. I had to rescue him after he got thrown from a car that blew up a block later." The agent frowned but came in. He waved a hand.

"Agent DiNozzo?"

Tony rolled his head to look at him. "I was undercover. The driver shot the Frog and shoved me out then the car exploded," he said quietly. "My head hurts. Alex did my stitches. The guy was CIA."

"Also, his girlfriend stopped me to try to tell me I'm my twin," Alex said. "I proved we weren't by talking to her dad on the video call. Then I went to my car and found a bomb."

The agent nodded. "Okay. So how did you get home?"

"Bar team."

"Oh." He nodded. "All right. Let me call this in. Is he safe here?"

"Yeah. I'm not going to do more than keep him in ice packs. I'm not Xander, no one attacks my house."

"Point. There's a question about how you got the money?"

"I looted the stuff vampires owned in Sunnydale before I left? Split it with my twin?"

"Oh. Yeah, I guess. I'll report that." He went to make that report from the car. His boss didn't know who was over the undercover but he could ask a few quiet questions over toward NCIS. A few agents came to rescue Tony from Alex but he was resting and healing well. They took him back to NCIS.

Alex cleaned up the mess and relaxed again. Tony came back that night so Alex let him in and let him collapse on the couch. "Bad day?"

"Yes." He groaned. Alex got up to get him another ice pack and came back to hand it over plus sit next to him so he wasn't alone. Sometimes not being alone was the best thing. "Wake me up in a few hours?"

"Sure. Done that a few times." Tony smiled but let himself drift off. It was safe here. He turned on the security alarm and got his books to read up for his next class. He really hated being in college but he knew it'd be helpful some day. Plus he did get to party like a college kids some days. Even if they were so very young to him.

Tony hummed. "Only been twenty minutes. I'm just studying. Sleep, Tony." He hummed again and drifted off again. He woke up fully when Alex took off the ice pack but then got to go back to sleep. It was the bad part of head injuries.


Alex sent out invitations to his graduation, smiling at the few he had to send. Xander couldn't get back. Well, he could but it'd mean that somewhere in Central Africa had to deal with its own battle. He'd try since the battle was two days before his graduation ceremony. Tony's got sent, and got returned with a writing that wasn't Tony's that he was not accepting personal mail there.

He sent one to his former boss, who sent back a 'good job' card and a small gift certificate to help him get a new suit. He considered it then went to see Tony at work. He got lunch time. Most of the time. He showed up and found Tony outside glaring at the building. "I just showed up to invite you to my graduation so I have someone there who can take pictures," he said happily, handing over that same invitation.

Tony stared at him. "Xander can't get back?"

"Probably not. Somewhere in the center of Africa has a battle two days before then. He'll try but you're one of my few friends in the area. And my boss sent me something to get a new tie to go with my new suit." He held up the gift certificate then tucked it back into his pocket to keep it safe.

Tony looked at the note. "She's going to get it." He grinned and opened it then made a note on his phone. "If I'm not out of town." Alex hugged him with a grin. "Are you getting honors cords?"

"I'm lucky I made it through. Books and I aren't really friendly. I mean, 2.3 in high school and that was actually trying most of the time. I'm above a 3.0 but not that far above."

"So well in hireable ranges," Tony said with a smile.

"Yeah. I went business for speciality and I've already done the pre-bar test and passed it well enough that I'm not totally worried for the actual bar." Tony smiled at that, nodding some. "So I'll be okay. If not, I'm still a paralegal and I passed that test so I can get a job. Not like I don't have a job."

"True." He patted him on the cheek. "How is the new job?"

"Deadly boring. The firm got bought out by another firm and they're all uptight and annoying as hell. I think one was trying to tap my phone the other day." He did a hand wave slowly in the air. "I brought that up and they said the new people are uptight so I'm looking for a better firm to work with anyway. Be damned if I want to turn into an uptight earlier era Bush republican. Reagan loving I am not."

"Only people who don't remember what he did like him anymore." He patted him again. "I'll be there if I can."

Alex grinned. "Thanks, Tony."

"What are you doing here?" Gibbs demanded.

Alex looked at him. "Inviting him to my graduation from law school. What are you doing here, Agent Gibbs?" The man glared. Alex stared back. "I've seen worse from teenage girls who were cheerleaders and I dated her. Are you auditioning to replace her in my bedroom?" Gibbs choked at that. He grinned at Tony. "Cordelia was not that sweet or nice. Queen C was kinda also the bitch queen quite often. He really does remind me a lot of her."

Tony gave him a hug with a grin. "Thank you, Alex. Go have fun before he recovers."

"I'm not scared of him." He let him go with a smile. "You be safe. Or if you have to get another head injury come camp on the couch so you have someone who'll wake you up." He patted him on the cheek. "Though, quit getting hurt, Tony. Before one of those less-than-logical beings gets you killed. Some of us would miss you." He strolled off.

Tony smirked at Gibbs. "I've seen pictures of Cordelia, Boss. She was pretty and fashionable. I guess you can't compare to her after all." He walked around him. "I'm still on lunch before I smite Ziva."

"Go back to your desk," he growled.

Tony looked at him. "I'm allowed to have a lunch. That is the law." He gave him a pointed look before going to get something to eat.


"Don't care, Gibbs." He waved a hand like Alex did. "Maybe the kid has the right idea and I should hit law school too." Gibbs groaned but stomped back inside to glare at Ziva and have a talk about her problems of the day. Tony came back with his lunch and settled in to eat it while he proofread.

McGee looked over. "Report?" he asked quietly. "Gibbs is in a horrible snit."

"Yeah, Alex Harris just compared him to a bitchy cheerleader and found him lacking." He shot him a grin. "He showed up to invite me to graduation."

"I thought he was older."

"He worked for years. He's graduating law school."

"Oh, congratulate him for me. That's really hard." He went back to what he was doing. Tony was nibbling while typing a few corrections.

The director came down the stairs. She spotted the invitation and snatched it. "I thought I sent that back."

"Which means you just admitted to a federal crime. Tampering with the mail," Tony quipped, taking it back to stare at her. "I am allowed to have friends, Director."

"He compromised your undercover."

"Bullshit. Jeanne's father found out from someone CIA. Would you like that letter explaining that again?" He stared at her. "I gave you the last copy. And frankly, my private life is none of your business. Not my friends, not anything else I do. Not like he knows what my home address is and sending it here is very nice of him. Now, anything else, Director?"

She stepped back, looking horrified. He looked at the thing that had appeared beside him. "What?" It mumbled something he didn't understand. "I don't speak that language but if you're tracking Alex, he's probably grocery shopping then going home. It's his day for it." The thing nodded and left.

He stared at the director again, making her stomp off again. "Have fun with your broom practice, Director," he muttered, glaring at her back. McGee tried not to laugh at that. He looked over. "She might even play quidditch." McGee did laugh at that. Gibbs and Ziva David came off the elevator together. "You missed the Director trying to prove she's tougher, Boss. Pity she's not that scary either." He went back to proofreading and eating.

"Are you still on lunch, DiNozzo?"

He ate another bite and nodded. "Since I'm not even supposed to be here today? Yes." Gibbs winced. "That was *your* call to bring me off injury leave early for no reason. So yes, I'm eating things I need to finish healing the problem in my leg. Hopefully it'll stop the cramping soon." He went back to it.

"You don't have any backed up reports."

"No, I did that a few days back when I couldn't stand up from the couch for almost a day. This is for continuing ed classes. Which are required for all agents."

"I did mine last month," McGee said.

"I did most of mine but I'm missing the investigative session," Tony said. "So I'm working on that. Just have to get the paper done." He smirked at McGee. "Then I'm done for two years."

"I've got some next year. I spread them out to give me a break between." He looked them up and sighed. "She added two more classes."

"Already done 'em. Injury leave is good for something."

"Maybe I need to get injured again so I can just sit and do them all in one week," McGee muttered. Tony snickered, shaking his head. "I know, it's not worth the pain."

"No, it's not." He started a spell checker, finding the last few things, and then a grammar checker to find anything else. Then he saved it down and sent it to the class address. He got an email back that it had been sent and received. "That's good." He got out of that and went back to the surfing he was doing.

Gibbs stared at him. "What are you doing now, DiNozzo?"

"Looking at realty sites, Gibbs. Since I don't have any work I need to do." He didn't even look up.

"You are being snippy," Ziva said. Tony stared at her until she backed down. "Perhaps you should go back to bed?"

"I would be on the couch recovering but someone pulled me off injury leave when I still had another five days before the injury you helped cause seals, Agent David." She shrank down again. He went back to surfing.

"You're fine," Gibbs said.

Tony snorted. "No I'm not. I've already had to have two bandage changes due to the stitches snapping and Ducky having to redo them." He stared at him. Gibbs glared. He stared back. "Do I really need more scars in my life? Law school's looking like a nicer alternative all the time." He looked up the various law schools he could attend. The one Alex had went to had a bad reputation but good credits for prior work.

Probably why Alex had went there. There was another in town and it was a better program but wouldn't give him any credit for his years in law enforcement. That was a bad decision to make so he looked at others.

University of Virginia's looked decent and it was within commuting distance. Had a lot of distance learning. He asked them to send him information on that program and in his notes he added that he was currently a federal agent at NCIS and had prior law enforcement service as well. They would like that in a student. Plus he'd have to do less research for some papers. Hopefully.

He got out of that page and went to a few others he liked because he liked some of their graduates. Only one wasn't nearby. He'd have to move to Pennsylvania. Which...wasn't actually a bad thing. He sent an email to HR to get his education hours looked at to see how many he had left.

They sent back one almost immediately that it was no longer a category they had on file, the director had removed it. So that was fine. He'd just do it without that. Gibbs was huffy but oh well. "We no longer have education hours, Probie."

"That's odd. I had one last time I looked." He looked at that. "She did take it out. Great. They demand classes for continuing ed and then don't count those hours as work hours. Just absolutely marvelous." He huffed.

"That was my feeling too," Tony said, looking at him. McGee looked back. "One section of the required classes is only given in two weeks for the next year. Thankfully I took it last year and it's only every five."

McGee looked then smiled at his screen. "I took that two years ago. I have time." He sighed in pleasure. "I only need four of the classes in a year. I can do that on weekends I guess." He went over what each one would need.

"What classes?" Ziva demanded.

Tony looked at her. "All federal agents in all agencies, including this one, have mandatory continuing education classes so we're not stuck without current information and skills. FLETC should've taught you that. You have a total of twelve classes that are due at least bi-yearly and one that's due every five years. The classes range from five hour seminars to three months of classes you can do online.

"That one's a pain but it is on field investigative techniques. If you don't take them, they can fire you, Ziva. Sometimes they'll ignore it, like in Gibbs' case because he's years behind. Again. Last time they put him on desk duty until he did at least four of the classes. They can outright fire you for not having them. And they do audit that randomly for every agency."

"Mine got audited last year," McGee said. "I passed the audit, got praised for keeping up, and then they warned Gibbs about his."

Gibbs rolled his eyes. "It's not mandatory."

Tony pulled up the pertinent code and put it on the main monitor. "Yes it is. For all agents." He pointed at it. "That is in the manual and she cannot override that. Only the president can override that order." He grinned and erased it from the monitor since the director was coming back. He looked at Ziva. "How far behind are you? Days like this, we catch a few hours of it so we have something to do. They're rare so we take advantage of it." She huffed but got back into the reports she had backed up.

"DiNozzo, since you're bored, proofread her reports," Gibbs said.

"That's illegal," he said in a sing-song voice. "That would be tampering with her statement and reports. Only supervisors can do that. I am not her supervisor. I'm not going to be fired and blackballed for taking over duties that only a supervisor can do."

Gibbs glared. "That is not a rule either."

"Yes it is," McGee said, pulling up that to show him. "Written by Director Sheppard, Boss. Before it could have been delegated for education on how to write better reports." He pulled up the last one. "It's now illegal." He sat back down to get into his continuing ed again. The Director paused to glare at them. "Doing federally mandated continuing ed, ma'am, since you took our ed hours out."

"You're not required."

"We're a federal agency, we're required." He put back up that statement for her. "The only one who can undo that is the oversight board over all agencies or the President." He looked at her. "We have to have it. They'll audit otherwise." He went back to work. "Shoot. I have the updated HR panel this time."

Tony laughed. "This year's wasn't so bad. Just an update of the last one and the seminar was only three hours. It's on tape. I played it and answered the questions while I made dinner."

"Oh, good. That's an every other year course. I hate that one." He got into that file to see what forms it came in. He looked at the ending questions and he could answer most of them. He put in his headphones and went over that one to answer the questions he didn't have an immediate answer for. The Director went to call someone and have a fit on them.

Tony went back to the realty site. Did he want to buy? He wasn't sure. Was he staying in DC? He wasn't sure. He shifted and winced, holding his thigh. He checked, no new blood at least. He put pressure on it and it quit hurting for a little while. He finished his lunch so he could take his antibiotic and something for the pain. That helped a little bit at least.

One house caught his eye. It was near Alex's townhouse. Not a bad neighborhood. He grimaced. "That's way too high for that level of house." He went back to looking at condos. With how often he wasn't home, it'd pay to have the condo's amenities.

Gibbs was still mad but oh well. He'd be even more mad when someone from Internal Affairs came up to talk to Tony. Tony blinked at him. "Agent DiNozzo, HR has informed us you're missing medical release forms from your last three injuries." Tony pointed at Gibbs. "I'm aware you're supposed to be on injury leave today," he said patiently.

"Yes but I got called in by Gibbs. And told if I didn't show up he was going to fire me. So I'm on desk duty apparently. Gibbs decided he overruled that. And the last few times too. He told me Ducky could do it, when he's not allowed by NCIS law. I've done what I can and gotten belated ones from my doc when I went to have stitches taken out." He pulled the file he kept of NCIS necessary paperwork out. "That's all I have."

He looked at them, then looked at Gibbs. "That's a violation of federal law and his human rights." Gibbs glared. "You're not that scary, Gibbs." He looked at Tony. "Stitches?"

"Ducky had to redo some earlier," he admitted. "It hurts like a bitch right now but I can do desk duty. Since I have nothing to do and I just finished a continuing ed section, I'm looking at real estate."

"Good. We're doing an audit of that last week." He handed over a letter to each of them.

Tony looked. "I'm not due those." He got into the system to show him. "See?"

"Oh, you're not. Huh. We got into all agencies database instead of ours." He made that note. "Print that." Tony did that. McGee did his too. "Very nice, Agent McGee. Thank you." He looked them over. "That does fit yours. All but next year's."

"Already starting. I'm doing the HR one right now." He smiled and let him see the screen.

"Excellent. That one will need to be updated next year as well because they're changing a few of the rules about what you're supposed to take yearly. They're dropping one of the classes and including it in another one then changing the title of another." That got a nod. "But it is that HR one to go over the manual so short at least. We know you guys are busy since your overtime records are heinous and also a problem with federal guidelines."

Both male agents smiled at him like they were stupid. "We know why, boys. Relax. You're not in trouble." He looked at Gibbs. "You're years behind, Special Agent Gibbs. It is mandatory. You have a single week from yesterday to show that you have done at least six classes or you will be suspended to non-office time to do them. Which means taking them with the rookie agents at FLETC. Am I clear?"

"I was told it was no longer mandatory."

"Someone lied to you and the president is looking at this issue because of the FBI messing up. So we're all complaint or we're all in trouble." He looked at Ziva then at Gibbs. "Also, you should be aware that the president is aware of your team's ...assistant, who is not an actual agent as she's not a US citizen. Going for her citizenship is good, and he likes that. It still won't count until she takes that oath. And the updating classes.

"As she's your team's addition, if you go on suspension so does she because neither lower agent is of high enough rank to oversee anything she does. That is the law. That is what the Oversight people have noted." He handed over that folder. "That's the legal orders on how to handle foreign agents working with a team. They wanted you handed a copy. And your director." He walked off to go up the stairs to the walkway. "People," he said loudly.

"I am Internal Affairs for NCIS and other military investigative agencies. The president has called an audit of continuing education classes, which we did last week. You have a *week* from yesterday to be up to date. Some of you are very far behind. I'm announcing this now instead of enjoying so many people being suspended next week because we were informed that HR no longer has education hours allowed." He shrugged.

"Some of you are years behind. Do this year's and last year's if you can. You have until 5pm on a week from yesterday. Or else we will be forced to suspend you. That is the presidential order because some people in the FBI screwed up. It made the news." That got a few groans.

"Remember, if you're suspended, you only have two weeks, have to take it with the rookies in FLETC, and they're not doing it soon so you'd be fired if you haven't complied within that two weeks, with the rookies. Am I clear?" They mostly nodded. "Good. Sorry but at least I'm not here to suspend half the floor."

He went in to tell the Director what she had done wrong according to the oversight people and the president. She called him and he told her to follow orders and hung up on her. So that was pleasant. He was having a nice day. He stopped at DiNozzo's desk again.

"Going to UVA isn't a bad idea but their school is hard and won't give you credit for work credit. The one where you did that undercover isn't a favored school but they will. And they're cheaper. The other choice is good but a pain to get into. They only accept five percent of the applicants. Good luck." He left again.

Tony nodded. "That's good to know. Were you checking up on me?" he called.

"Wanting to see what was so bad that you had to break injury leave. Then we found out why." He shot him a look. "Go home. Get actual clearance. Until then you can't come back."

Tony nodded, packing up to do that. "I talk to my doc in two days anyway."

"Good." He smiled. "Get clearance for the head injuries too, DiNozzo. The president said it's a running joke about your concussions." He smirked a bit, getting onto the elevator.

"I can do that too," he sighed. "Even though I hate MRI's." He looked at Gibbs. "I can't go against direct orders, Boss." He left, going home to rest. And order dinner. He was still hungry.

Gibbs glared at McGee, then at Ziva. "Show her how to get into that, McGee." He came over to get her into the continuing education program. Then he got to teach the other team leaders, including Gibbs, when the director called a meeting.

Everyone was mad. It was a great day to be NCIS if you had followed regulations.


Tony came over that weekend, walking in when Alex opened the door and going to flop down on the couch. "I'm screwed."

"Is that something you wanted to be?" He closed the door and came over to give him a hug. "Why are you screwed?"

"My doc said I get one more concussion and he'll pull me from the field."

"Okay. So now what? Are you looking at options other than NCIS? Would some other agency protect your head better?"

"They hate that I managed to survive Gibbs and think it gave me a weird view of the world."

"You probably already had it."

"True." He put his head back down. "I was thinking about law school."

"I had some fun," Alex said with a grin. "Broke some people too." That got a nod. "You have a lot of options, especially if you're willing to do college. There's finance stuff, there's legal stuff, there's running for Congress...." He shrugged. "You could even do medical school so you could mentor the next agent that turns into you."

"I could. I don't want to do medical school." He stared at him. "Congress?"

"Yeah, you could. You know how things should be and how they really are."

"True. Not something I wanted." He put his head back down. "I'd put that below medical school right now."

"Or you could use it to protect the agencies that are working right." He grinned. "They want to cut your whole agency out of the budget. They have no idea who you are."

"Fuck. That's going to be bad. They wanted us to do updated continuing ed so we can be transferred to other agencies," he realized. "Oh, no." He sat up. "What's your source?"

"CNN this morning."

Tony looked it up on his phone, finding it. Then he called Gibbs. "Found out why we're all doing updating paperwork, Boss. NCIS was trying to be removed from the budget. That way they could farm out the good agents to other agencies without many problems. CNN this morning." He hung up and laid back down. Alex sat beside his head and petted through his hair. "That's nice," he said quietly.

"You're welcome. I know very well that sometimes you just need someone there. I ended up going clubbing for a few of mine."

"Yeah, so have I," Tony admitted quietly. "It doesn't always help enough."

"No but it's something." Tony nodded so he went back to petting him while he thought. He had to make some choices. Did he jump ship sooner? Did he stick it out? Maybe get another head injury and therefore be forced out of his job due to too much damage? Go to medical school? Go to law school? Run for congress? That thought made him shudder. He didn't even know how to start that. "How is looking for a new firm going?"

"I've had two interviews. I took the bar last week and I'm waiting on results. Things will be easier then." Tony nodded. "I'm not hurting for money, Tony."

"I realize that." He shifted his feet. "I hate head injuries."

"Then get fewer of them. That's an option. Even if you just changed teams it'd probably cut down on that."

"Point. None of the other teams get injured like we do." Someone pounded on the door. "Not sure who that is."

"I think that's your director," Alex said, looking out the window. "It's a limo." He got up, going to answer it before she made another attempt to break down his door. "Yes?" he asked. "Why did you come to visit today, ma'am?"

"Is my agent here?" she demanded, trying to push her way inside. Alex stopped her. "I'm going to tell everyone he's gay."

"That's a blatant lie and he's dated enough women in this city that they all know him." He smiled a bit. "Beyond that, he's napping on the couch. We are friends. He can nap on my couch if he wants. I doubt I'm his type anyway."

Tony strolled over. "You're kind of my type but you're a guy. If you were a girl I might've flirted." He stared at the director. "Yes, Madam Director?"

"You...." She looked him over. "Napping?"

"Yes. I needed a nap after having an MRI earlier. The noise always gives me a headache, even with ear plugs." She glared. He stared back. "Why did you come all the way out here?"

"This...thing..." she said with a hand wave at Alex. "Is getting you in trouble, DiNozzo."

"I'm still fully human," Alex said.

"You're not. You're one of *them*."

"No. My twin's been exposed to demon blood. I haven't. I do work with the peaceful community. I grew up around a lot of them. Went to school with plenty too. Still human though. I'm just tolerant. It's a pity more people aren't." She tried to hit him so he held her off. "Lady, don't make me punch you back.

"I can defend myself against any charges you'll bring as I have a taping home security system. And an agent watching again." He waved at him, getting a huffy agent. "Can you please take this heaving, hissy fit throwing woman out of my vicinity? She just accused me of not being a human and tainting Agent DiNozzo by being his friend and letting him nap off a headache."

"I can do that, Mr. Harris. Director Sheppard, he's fully human. We've tested some of his twin's blood once, and had the computer system fully shut down to protect him."

"Yeah, Xander has a few things that he's caught over the years. He really hates blood hunters."

"I can't say I like them either," the agent said.

"Me either," Tony added. "She's decided he's leading me astray."

"DiNozzo, you've dated seventy women in the last four years. Save some for the rest of us. And if you take in that one, make him quit being bouncy." He walked her off to force her into her car and make her go away. "I heard your agency's being shut down, Director."

He smiled. "I look forward to seeing what agents my people poach from yours. Which probably won't be DiNozzo since Gibbs made him act weird and superhuman. We don't allow agents to wear capes." He walked off back to his car to keep watch over Alex.

Tony shut the door. "Why are they watching you?"

"Someone went after a nursery again and I heard, went to defend it. They got really horrified that I'll unretire for that sort of thing. Watching me means that I let them know if the agents are trying them again. I need to call in that Sheppard's that prejudice but they probably have the place bugged." He shrugged. "We'll figure it out." Tony nodded, going back to the couch and his bad thoughts.

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