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Jack Of All Trades, Taskmaster Of Every One

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Summary: Xander finds out that there are some aftereffects of Coach Marin's efforts to get a championship team that no one could reasonably have expected.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Marvel Universe > AvengersGreywizardFR15514,3221216454,25230 Aug 1229 Apr 13No

Chapter One

Disclaimer: They all belong to Crack-Head Joss and ME or Marvel Comics. Yeah, I know exactly how wrong that is, but I've learned to live with it.

Time Frame: Follows the BtVS season two episode 'Go Fish,' then goes totally AU.

Spoilers: None intended, but if you don't know what's happened up to this point, why are you reading this story?

Character Bashing: None.

Feedback: Of course!

Archiving: Talk to me first, please.

Author's Note 1: Many thanks to Lori Bush, Bill Haden and Theo (Starway_Man) for beta-ing this story.

Author's Note 2: As usual, “word” indicates speech, :: word :: indicates mental communication and { word } indicates a character's thoughts.

Author's Note 3: This is a response to TTH Challenge 3956.

Author's Note 4: While I do like Samuel L. Jackson's portrayal of Nick Fury in the various movies, for *this* story, I am envisioning Nick Fury as the same character originally offered to us by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby; i.e., a greying Caucasian. And, were I to ever cast someone for that particular role, I would choose Clint Eastwood as the person who would best exemplify that character.

Author's Note 5: This is story #30 for the 2012 August Fic-A-Day Challenge.

~~~

S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier
Undisclosed location

May 7, 1998


"Colonel Fury, we've just received notification about a possible hit concerning Horst Gorscht's Übermensch formula."

"Where and when did the hit show up, Sitwell?"

"From a high school student's blood tests, in a place called Sunnydale – it's a suburb town of Los Angeles, sir, and we just got the notification ten minutes ago."

"Alright, well, are you waiting for? Get a team out there and check things out. I sure as hell don't need any freakin' unaffiliated supersoldiers popping up at a high school graduation."

"I'll get our people on it, right away, sir."

~/~/~

Sunnydale High School
Sunnydale, CA

May 8, 1998


Xander Harris had never considered himself to be a genius, but he'd also never really thought of himself as the complete idiot his parents typically labeled him, either.

After all, if he *was* an idiot, he knew he would never have been able to sustain the grades necessary to stay in the AP classes he was enrolled in, along with Buffy and Willow, despite the California Board of Education's efforts to help students "establish and maintain a confident self-image."

Regardless of that, though, he'd noticed that classes seemed to be going a lot easier for him the past few days than they had, previously. In fact, Mrs. Washburn had actually commented – favorably! – about his answers to her questions and about his general participation in class, too.

Which was something that usually happened – well, never!

In any event, school was over for the day; and so it was time to help out on research detail, so that the ol' Scooby Gang could hopefully figure out exactly what it was that Angelus was planning, and therefore keep the world from ending anytime soon.

***

Sunnydale High School

The same day
Several hours later


As the janitor began cleaning the Computer Science classroom, he slid the teacher's desk to one side and began to sweep the dust from the area between the file cabinet and the desk, his eyes half-glazed and his head nodding to the sounds of whatever song was on the radio station he was listening to. His actions were something that, under different circumstances, never would have happened; but then, one should never underestimate the power of Michael Jackson's music to unexpectedly force the working man to go above and beyond in the performance of his duty, as well as the Hellmouth's ability to throw a monkey wrench into the workings of Destiny.

Unnoticed, a yellow 3.5 inch floppy disk was swept into the dust pan and dumped along with the other trash into the janitor’s mobile trash can. The classroom now cleaned, the janitor moved on to the next room, blissfully unaware of the new path onto which he had inadvertently diverted the futures of so many unsuspecting people.

~/~/~

S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier
Undisclosed location

May 12, 1998


"So, what've ya got for me, Sitwell?" Fury growled.

"We've obtained the blood samples which raised the initial alert, Colonel – and our lab's analyses have confirmed that our worries were entirely justified, sir."

"That's simply freakin' wonderful! So, exactly which serum variant are we looking at? And how and why did it show up in the first place?" the greying, one-eyed combat veteran turned spy growled. "I'd expect HYDRA or A.I.M. would be a bit more discreet about developing supersoldiers than using high school students as guinea pigs, even in California."

"Actually, sir, from what our team in the town had been able to determine, the particular formulation used on the test subjects is a variation created by the local high school swim team coach. Carl Marin is someone who was apparently working from notes he allegedly received as part of an inheritance from his maternal grandfather, SS-Hauptsturmführer Horst Gorscht," Sitwell informed his boss.

"From what our people have been able to determine, this particular serum is a rather elaborate modification of the adrenal steroid, cortisol, and it appears to be designed to unlock the mind's potential and turn test subject into a virtual polymath, allowing the recipient absorb information at an accelerated rate, and thereby enabling them to more easily master any language, skill or discipline they might focus on, and at a rate far faster than would normally be expected," Stillwell elaborated. "The technicians have hypothesized that, in some instances, the recipient might be able to actually reproduce or synthesize physical skills just by watching experts who already possess such skills.

"As far as Marin himself is concerned, though, he hasn't been seen at the school, or at his home, for over a week, and he hasn't accessed either of his bank accounts," the blond-haired team leader continued his report. "Either the man's got additional resources available that he's managed to conceal from our auditing department, or he's either died or been kidnapped."

"Huh. Judging by the statistics our people have reported, a whole lot of people seem to be dying from 'wild animal attacks' or being attacked by 'barbeque fork-wielding assailants' in that town," Fury stated with a frown.

"Something stinks about this place, kid," the S.H.I.E.L.D. Director declared. "And my gut's saying there's a lot more hinky stuff going on than just this thing with the serum.

"Put a dozen teams on it, and find out exactly what it is that's wrong with this town. And drop a mobile ops base somewhere close, too. LA is too far to work out of."

"Yes, sir. They'll be in place by sundown."


TBC
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