Disclaimer: Characters and concepts belong to their owners who I'm too lazy to list.
Weapon...check. Ammo...check. First aid pouch...definitely check.
Life was strange, Xander mused as he double checked his equipment. It was his first mission,
and he should have been nervous. It was natural for a soldier on his first combat mission to
be nervous. Hell, sick to his stomach even. Some always got precombat shakes. But once the
mission started, they were all business. Oddly enough, Xander wasn't the least bit shaky.
Maglight...check. Canteen full...check. Flak vest secure...check.
Of course, after all that time fighting vampires and demons and whatnot in Sunnydale, Xander
supposed he was a little jaded. Been there, seen the apocalypse coming, what are you doing
Friday night? And of course, all that military knowledge he gained during the Halloween of
'97 made ROTC and Special Forces training a breeze...almost.
"Lieutenant Harris, are you ready yet?" The Colonel's voice was feminine yet full of
authority. In appearance, her blonde hair and brilliant green eyes reminded Xander of Buffy
despite the fact that she was at least ten years older. Yet during the rush briefing, she
had displayed an intelligence and competence that reminded him more of Willow.
"Yes, ma'am," Xander replied. "Just making sure my gear is all right, ma'am."
"That's all right, Lieutenant, but we're in a hurry," the Colonel said. "I know you're new
here and that this mission was rather abrupt but it can't be helped." She looked at him,
puzzled. "You don't seem to be very surprised at all this, Lieutenant."
"Well, you could say this is old hat to me, ma'am," Xander told her.
The Colonel raised her eyebrows in surprise. "You consider the Earth under imminent attack
from homicidal alien parasites in fleets of invincible starships, small commando teams
jumping through wormholes our only hope, not to mention following a woman into combat," some
attitudes are hard to kill even in the twentyfirst century, "to be old hat?"
Xander shrugged. "Just like highschool," he told her, including a somewhat lopsided grin.
At that moment, the seventh chevron locked and the Stargate opened in a brilliant blue
plume of subatomic particles. As he followed Colonel Samantha Carter into the Stargate, he
thought he heard her mutter under her breath, "Great! I've got another Jack O'Neil."