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Fic: A Well Respected Man About Town

Title: A Well Respected Man About Town
Author: Rebcake
Rating: PG
Word Count: 980
Prompt: genfic_minis round 5: minor male characters. snickfic requested Ethan with Anya, too high a price, and something mystical.
Characters: Ethan Rayne, Anyanka, Halfrek, The Host
Summary: Ethan celebrates his latest success on the Hellmouth, after Band Candy and before The Wish.


Ethan eyed the two lovelies in the booth near the stage. They’d been sneaking looks at him for a while, so he did what any fellow would do who’d just had a very satisfactory payday: he asked Ramón to send over a couple of fruity drinks. He still had a box of the enchanted chocolate with him and although candy would undoubtedly be quicker in this case, he opted to go with the more traditional liquor method. When the drinks arrived at their table, he shot them his most charming roguish grin. The women immediately put their heads together in some mysterious feminine negotiation. Nodding at each other, they turned to him with inviting smiles.

“Once more unto the breach,” he murmured before ambling over to join them. He so hoped he wouldn’t be bored.

“Ladies, I hope you won’t mind if I join you.” It wasn’t a question, really, but they assented anyway.

He slid onto the bench opposite them, and took stock. One was a curvy, apple-cheeked beauty with dark curly hair, lush lips, and ample bust. The other seemed younger, elegant and fine-boned, with an inquisitive sparkle in her eye. The curly-haired one took charge, as Ethan was sure she would.

“We were hoping you might be able to help us with a little professional disagreement,” she said.

“I’m wounded. Whatever gave you the idea that I might be in any way ‘professional’? Unless… Pray, just what ‘profession’ is under discussion?” He smirked as they giggled, the curly-headed one slapping his wrist lightly before clarifying.

“Naughty. We’re both therapists of a sort, though we have different areas of expertise.”

The younger one jumped in. “Yes. Halfrek works with families and children…” she said with a nod at her friend.

“While Anyanka specializes in couples counseling,” finished Halfrek. They beamed at one another.

“We have this on-going argument — well discussion really — about who damages people most: their inevitably lacking parents or their ultimately disappointing lovers,” explained Anyanka.

“So, we like to take an informal poll when we meet people. It breaks the ice, gets the juices flowing. Are you in?” asked Halfrek.

“A gentleman never tattles, darling,” he said. Halfrek pouted prettily. “But then, nobody ever accused me of being a gentleman, so we should be perfectly safe.” He leaned back into the booth cushions and made himself comfortable.

“Okay,” began Anyanka. “If you had the power to turn just one person who had done you wrong into a Fyarl…”

“Who would it be?” asked Halfrek. She and Anyanka clinked their glasses together and settled back, watching him expectantly.

“Oh, tricky. Well, I certainly wouldn’t waste a prank like that on dear old Pater. He’s been drooling into his porridge for years, so turning him into a Fyarl would only frighten the nurses.”

Halfrek looked unaccountably disappointed.

“Parents certainly have more time in which to ruin their offspring, so if we were awarding for the marathon, Mumsy Dearest would take the prize. That’s no small consideration.” He paused to take a drink and squinted thoughtfully. “But then, simply everyone’s parents manage to get their licks in, so it’s not terribly unique, is it? There’s something generic about blaming them for one’s disappointments.”

Halfrek seemed almost affronted by this.

“With lovers, the rejection always comes across as intensely personal, doesn’t it?” he mused.

Anyanka nodded vigorously.

“But,” he said with a wink, “when there have been so very many of them, how would one begin to choose?”

Anyanka slumped a little. Before he could tease her for her disappointment, the Host took the stage. He was resplendent in a yellow suit with red piping that matched his eyes and horns. Ethan wondered if his purported psychic readings were as spectacular as his wardrobe.

“All right, everybody put those powder puffs away, because the break is over! We’ve got a plum pudding from the Misty Isles coming up next. Ladies, keep your knickers on; gents, start your engines; all others, prepare to be dunked in the tea and honey tones of Ethan the Mage!”

Ethan quickly convinced his charming companions to join him onstage for his own rendition of “Walk on the Wild Side”, tailored for a crowd who could enjoy the references to various mystic superstars of questionable morality. At the chorus, he purred, “And the demon girls say…”

“Doo da doo da doo, doo doo doo, doo da doo da doo…” crooned the women, hips swaying back and forth.

It was a good thing the Host had cautioned against panty-throwing, or they might never have made it back to the table afterward. Merle the Not-so-Mysterious squawked out a thin version of “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat” as Ethan promised to get fresh drinks. He found the Host by the bar.

The demon leaned in confidentially. “First of all, it’s a pleasure to have someone in Caritas that can pull off a little ditty like that one. You’re welcome back anytime. But I kinda hope I don’t see you in here again, because there’s a strong indication that it’s time for you to head to the homeland. Retrench. Enjoy your ill-gotten gains and live to a ripe old mischievous age. You’re nursing a grudge about victories cut short, but so far they’ve still been victories. Just know that if you try for payback or another big score in the same wading pool, next time…you’re gonna drown.”

Ethan pondered that and pleasantly thanked the demon. Such an earnest fellow…

+++

When Ethan awoke in his hotel room the next afternoon, his delightful companions had gone. But they’d left behind a small vial and a note.

Very satisfactory encounter. Please accept this gift in the spirit of academic inquiry. Contents good for one Fyarl transformation. Use according to your wish. Or not. Expires 12-1-2998.

Caution: Stay clear of mucus.

Sincerely,
Anyanka and Halfrek


No, he hadn’t been bored.

FIN

This entry was originally posted at http://rebcake.dreamwidth.org/15015.html. Please comment here or there using OpenID.

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Comments

( 24 comments — Leave a comment )
velvetwhip
Feb. 11th, 2011 11:49 pm (UTC)
This was delectable! I quite enjoyed it! Bad, bad Ethan...threesomes with vengeance demons? Bad, indeed.


Gabrielle
rebcake
Feb. 12th, 2011 12:43 am (UTC)
Yes, I don't think it's too much of a stretch to say that Ethan is a sociopath: so very charming but without a lot of heart. He delights in being bad, but Anyanka and Halfrek are badder. He doesn't even know he's out of his depth, that the trap was expertly baited. Hee!

Thanks so much for commenting! I'm really glad you liked it.

Edited at 2011-02-12 12:44 am (UTC)
rahirah
Feb. 12th, 2011 12:11 am (UTC)
Oh, that's perfect!
rebcake
Feb. 12th, 2011 12:47 am (UTC)
Hee! Those vengeance demons always get the last word, don't they? I'm pleased you liked it. Thanks for commenting, sweetie!

P.S. MiAmor was reading through the comments (he calls 'em accolades) and laughed about 10x harder at your icon than at anything I wrote. He says it's the thing that's perfect.

Edited at 2011-02-12 07:24 am (UTC)
jen_nsync_landl
Feb. 12th, 2011 02:14 am (UTC)
Wonderful! A perfect treat and delightfully plausible.

Yup, this is totally how it happened. :)
rebcake
Feb. 12th, 2011 03:09 am (UTC)
¡Yay! I'm so pleased that it worked for you. It's weird what pops up as exactly how it happened, isn't it? My personal canon has taken a lot of odd twists since I began writing...

Thanks for commenting!
snickfic
Feb. 12th, 2011 05:07 am (UTC)
Yay! When I saw that you'd requested Ethan I had an idea you might end up with my request, and I was very excited to see what you'd do. This seems so appropriate! Interesting that Ethan kept the vial so long before deciding to use it.

And I see Anya won out in the end (at least, according to my interpretation, she did *g*).

Also: yay bonus Lorne. There's no such thing as too much Lorne.

Thank you so much!
rebcake
Feb. 12th, 2011 07:07 am (UTC)
Hee! Yes, great minds or something, I suppose. It took awhile for me to fit it into canon, as I like to do, but I think I got there. I did think about putting something in about revenge being best served cold to explain the delay, but my theory is that Ethan dithered for awhile about who to use it on (Mother, Giles, of someone else?), and continued to think on Lorne's warning, before he finally just couldn't NOT do it anymore. Lorne warning him off might have even driven him to it, his ego being too big to resist the challenge.

Weirdly, no one actually won. Anya would have been the winner, but she'd already been knocked out of the game (by Giles, interestingly enough). It's sort of a vengeance demon trifecta in that there were three losers in a three-way wager. Mwhaha!

You're welcome so much! Fun challenge!
owenthurman
Feb. 12th, 2011 08:53 am (UTC)
What a nice way to meet our friends together in Los Angeles. Too bad about how they couldn't stay out of Sunny-D.
rebcake
Feb. 12th, 2011 04:31 pm (UTC)
Huh. I hadn't really thought about it, but they do all meet their doom in Sunnydale, don't they? Not Lorne, of course. I'm pleased you enjoyed their meet-up! Thanks for commenting.
brutti_ma_buoni
Feb. 12th, 2011 05:41 pm (UTC)
Eeeee! I adore this! If nothing else, Ethan doing Walk on the Wild Side is worth the trip, especially with a side of demon girls as backing singers. But there's actual canon as well, and great characterisation: I loved their inevitably lacking parents or their ultimately disappointing lovers. Bitter, bitter demon girls.
rebcake
Feb. 12th, 2011 08:12 pm (UTC)
I really put on my thinking cap to decide what song Ethan would be likely to sing at Caritas. I enlisted my trusty lieutenants and we narrowed it down to Lou Reed or The Kinks. Unable to absolutely decide (never my best thing) Lou got the song, The Kinks got the title. Win-win!

I'm glad you thought the characterizations were okay. The line you quote had to be Anya, but I thought I wrote her as rather more carefree than we usually see her. Because she pretty much was without care before the pendant debacle. *nods* I had fun showing the Anyanka/Halfrek friendship. A bit Sex in the Demon Realms, if you will. (Though I've not actually seen SitC, so I could be way off the mark.)

Thanks for commenting so enthusiastically, sweetie!
moscow_watcher
Feb. 13th, 2011 05:28 pm (UTC)
Bwah! Love how intricately you shuffle the cards! Lorne aws Ethan's angel on one shoulder; Anya and Hallie as Ethan's devils on another shoulder. What a situation!
rebcake
Feb. 13th, 2011 07:41 pm (UTC)
You know Ethan will pick the devils, every time. You nailed me with your shuffling metaphor. I can't seem to keep myself from interlocking the cards of canon into...whatever this is. A stacked deck, probably. Heh. Thanks for commenting, sweetie!
treadingthedark
Feb. 17th, 2011 02:56 pm (UTC)
Awesome!
rebcake
Feb. 17th, 2011 04:00 pm (UTC)
Whee! Thank you very much!
hello_spikey
Feb. 17th, 2011 03:23 pm (UTC)
Gleee!!!

This little fic is oldschool fill-in-the-blank that's as devious and fun as Ethan himself!

It's so perfect!!

Ah, hubris! But I bet they were killer on the stage. Also woots to the shout-outs to two of my favorite songs. :D
rebcake
Feb. 17th, 2011 04:06 pm (UTC)
as devious and fun as Ethan himself

*fans self* Oooh, you say the sweetest things! I'm happy you liked it! What excellent (musical) taste you have, my dear! (It seems I can win you over to my brand of song!fic with enough incentive, eh?)
dianificus
Feb. 17th, 2011 07:18 pm (UTC)
You found the most delicious and original explanation to where did that Fyarl spell come from. Thanks!
rebcake
Feb. 19th, 2011 06:40 pm (UTC)
Hee! Those justice demons are even sneakier than Ethan. I'm so glad you liked it! Thanks for commenting!
snogged
Feb. 23rd, 2011 12:33 am (UTC)
This was truly excellent and most entertaining. :)
rebcake
Feb. 23rd, 2011 09:17 am (UTC)
¡Yay! I'm so pleased you liked it! Naughty Ethan is pretty entertaining, isn't he? Thanks for commenting!
shapinglight
Jul. 13th, 2015 05:37 pm (UTC)
Such fun. How come I keep missing all these great ficlets of yours?
rebcake
Jul. 13th, 2015 07:41 pm (UTC)
Oh, this old thing? You were probably doing something useful with your life...

Thanks, sweetie!
( 24 comments — Leave a comment )

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