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What've You Been Doing For The Last Two Years, MP?
*ducks in to post a thing, then flees*

Specifically for the amusement of justhuman, but also for anybody not a player who's ever tried and then given up wading through a millionbillion posts to make sense of what the hell I've been doing over at the Fandom High RPG .

Xander Harris at Fandom High: A Beginner's Guide




Brief overview of the RPG concept

Fandom High is a multifandom game, set in the present-day, and played out mostly in realtime - one fake day = one real day. The school, which is also called Fandom High, lives on Fandom Island. The island is a dimensional nexus; characters from any work of fiction (tv, book, comic, film, etc.) can show up there from any time period, at any age.

Multiple characters from the same small-f fandom might all hail from the same universe (all the Power Rangers characters do, I think, though they come from different points in the timeline) or they might each come from a different AU - which all of the Buffyverse characters have, so far. Xander knows two Willows, two Dawns, two Buffys, etc. - his home version and the Fandom version. (Since Xander's 26 now, the Fandom versions are almost always younger than the ones he knows back home.)

How Xander Got There

Fandom High's Xander never got as far as seeing the giant Mayor-snake. A few (handwavily vague) days before graduation, Buffy (who probably had a little more advance notice of what exactly the Mayor would turn into than canon Buffy did) decided that the possible loss of students from fighting the demon themselves would be too great. She went to the Watchers' Council (who she'd previously told to take a flying leap) asking for help.

In exchange for Buffy coming back at least somewhat under their control, the Council arranged to pull all of the Sunnydale High students out of town, and send them off to different schools -- some in other dimensions -- to avoid any sort of vengeance by the Mayor or his minions. They were plucked straight out of the end of their current year and shunted forward in time to the beginning of the school year for wherever they'd been sent, which could only help with the Mayor's people not being able to locate them.

Xander ended up at Fandom High. Willow went to Hogwarts, where she didn't so much re-take her senior year as get extra magical education. Buffy (along with her mom, since Joyce was one of the few monster-aware parents around) was at first sent to Pine Valley, because sometimes I think I'm funny. Then when the Council realized that the Mayor-Snake was still wandering around terrorizing the town of Sunnydale, she was recalled there, where, since there was no open high school, Giles acted as tutor/Watcher/landlord. Various other students who actually died in canon (Harmony, Larry) survived and were sent to still other schools.

Yeeeeah, it's a wee bit farfetched. Shh. Have a twinkie.

soldtoarmenians is Xander's student/graduate journal.


First Semester

(This is more in the form of Random Things That Happened than a narrative, partially because life was a lot handwavier back then, and partly because he appeared less back then. I was in the middle of another huge fannish project, was shy about initiating interaction with people I didn't know -- which was almost everyone -- and hadn't yet had Xander fall into a crowd of characters who make things happen around them - because Xander as a character and I as a player are both pretty passive when it comes to actually creating plots of our own.)

Xander's first roommate was notstakedyet, back when he was notsouledyet, because principalconnor thought she was funny, and that the best way to break up a shouting match between them would be to make them live together. They... didn't like each other a lot. They also didn't actually spend much time in the same room, though Angelus developed an endearing running gag of putting his cigarettes out on Xander's bedspread.

During Zombie Weekend, Xander was on the medical lines for the big defensive battle. He didn't eat the funky Bake Sale food, but he got to witness the joy that was Faith and Angelus thinking they were Buffy and Angel, and offered to kiss Marty Blank on the mouth for getting it on tape. Which actually happened, albeit a good six months later.

Xander went to Homecoming with Cally, but it was just as friends; Cally had been left dateless as the result of a mixup, and Xander admittedly seemed to be more interested in posturing with Angelus than devoting his full attention to his date.

There was an incident where a fear toxin was released at Spike's Pub; Xander was among the people affected; it threw him back to the end of sophomore year, trying to do CPR on Buffy, only he didn't succeed, and she wouldn't wake up. Basically his biggest fear is being useless - which explains a lot about what he did his workshop on that summer.

Among other not-so-plotty-but-backstory-contributy things, Xander met up with a back-from-the-dead Tara at the Sunnydale Reunion Dinner and got some info on how things went for the canon version of himself, at least as far as graduation from SDHS. He also picked up a pet frog in Journalism class who features a bit more heavily later, and spent a lot of time not looking at other guys. In leather.

The big group project for Journalism was a campaign to get the students to Just Say Yes to something; Xander's group consisted of himself, Logan Echolls, D'anna Biers, and Alex Krycek. Logan suggested, as a controversial subject likely to get them points, just say yes to vampires. Xander countered with just say yes to sanity.

They still ended up doing Logan's suggestion; Xander was, iirc, nice enough not to say 'I told you so' more than three or four times after Angelus killed Kitty Pryde, attacked Logan and Rory Gilmore, and ended up getting a soul shoved back in him.

The night the re-souling happened, Krycek and Jake Gavin got Rory to the clinic, while Logan came back to school looking for weapons and Angelus, possibly in that order. He got as far as stopping by 406 because he knew Xander would have stakes, etc., before he came close to collapsing from injuries and blood loss, and Xander helped get him to the clinic as well. Then started his long tradition of always being the guy to call Veronica Mars with bad news.

From the point where Angelus was fingered for killing Kitty and disappeared, until second semester, Xander had a single room in 406 - once Angel was souled, he'd moved into 238 with John Crichton.

Thanksgiving, aside from being when Jeremiah turned purple, was also when Xander re-established contact with Willow; before this, though Xander had been home once to pick up a bunch of his things, the Sunnydale students hadn't been given each other's contact information. Willow hacked the Watchers' Council database and found it.

The aftermath of Angel's re-souling saw the creation of the Investigators' Club, which was something like a much larger version of Scoobies 2.0; it's where Xander first got to know Miss Parker after their initial conversation about what a bad guy Angelus was (back in the 'told you so' link).

Other moments of random amusement included a gremlin-bite-induced lapdance from Veronica, who later interviewed him about life on the Hellmouth, discussing Gay as Blazes with an unknowingly lust-spelled Angel, and a trip into the Special Collections division with Logan Echolls to look for porn art porn. They got ... a little lost, and had to be rescued by Rory (now Logan's ex) and Zero.

Then on Christmas Eve before leaving for break, Xander slept out in the Common Room because well, he's not used to sleeping in a bed on Christmas Eve. But hey, it meant he got to witness the gremlin Christmas Carols.

Overall, Xander discovered over the course of the year that with access to classes in the right subjects, from the right teachers (and away from the place where he'd grown up and come to believe in his own lack of potential), he could actually be a decent, if not exceptional student.


Second Semester and Summer

Spring 2006 | Summer 2006

From the beginning of January 2006, Xander's journal is pretty comprehensive link-wise, but here's a very very limited summary:

In January, new student Isabel Evans moved in with Xander, and they became good friends.

He also spent much of the year stumbling out of literal and metaphorical closets and into the first romantic relationship ever that he didn't manage to screw up somehow. (If you're in it for Teh Slash, this will take you from Xander's early moments of Not Noticing Guys through Prom 2006 and Xander coming out to his home-version of Willow. After which the slash doesn't stop; it's just a constant, so I'd end up tagging every post ever.)

After graduating and leading a summer camp workshop, he gained some experience in teaching as well.

Xander's Yearbook.


Lost Years

Lost Years (2000 through 2007 in Xander's home dimension)

Xander found enough confidence in his own abilities that with a lot bit of poking from his friends, he was willing to try going to UC Sunnydale with Willow and Buffy, though he wasn't keen on leaving Fandom or the aforementioned relationship. He went home to a snake-free Sunnydale in the fall of 2000, fully intending to stay in touch and return to Fandom-in-2006 for Homecoming, holidays, etc. The time-space vortex: "Ahahaha notsomuch." It cut off all access to Fandom and any dimension that might be able to get to Fandom.

He spent the next six+ years out of contact and living through a somewhat AU version of BtVS seasons 5 through 7. (Obviously not in realtime!) Many things happened more or less as they did in canon, but some events and relationships were affected by the original evacuation of Sunnydale High and by things Xander experienced in Fandom. The most significant personal changes for Xander are that he did go to college (though UC Sunnydale went byebye before he finished) and that instead of his canon relationship with Anya, he developed a...something... with Faith over the summer that Buffy was dead, and lived with her until she was killed in that universe's version of Chosen.

Most of the supernatural parts of canon played out as scripted, leaving Xander sans an eye and working for a rebuilt Watchers' Council in a world where Sunnydale is now a giant sinkhole and there are more Slayers than you can shake a pointy stake at. He alternated between picking up new ones and doing clean-up/repair after a Slayer'd been through someplace and the fight caused building-damage. He was alone, sadder but not precisely unhappy, and generally restless. He didn't take long-term assignments in one place, or with one Slayer.

Index by character of the bazillion e-mails-in-bottles that he sent while he was gone, even though they bounced.


Back to Fandom

In January of 2007, Xander's timeline synched up with Fandom's again.

(And his journal became needsaparrot. Because playing 19 year old Xander and 26 year old one-eyed Xander out of the same 100 icons? Not happening.)

He discovered this completely by accident, when the place where he was supposed to pick up a new Slayer turned out to be a lot more familiar than he was expecting. Because he couldn't have a boring return to Fandom, Xander was immediately faced with a kidnapped ex-boyfriend, a (luckily failed) suicide note on his voicemail, and a bunch of friends (and a purple frog) who'd barely aged since the last time he saw them.

Also, a gift apartment-complex he tries hard not to look in the mouth, and a Slayer from the future who's not planning on going anywhere anytime soon. Said Slayer has a psychotic vampire twin who occasionally sends her nastygrams of an Angelus-worthy nature.

After holding out for months because hi, nine year age difference and why yes that does count as jailbait in this state, the ex is now... not so exxy. Xander's still a little twitchy about that, but since the thing that finally flipped his switch was one reminder too many that they tend to live dangerous lives and it's just plain stupid to waste time that could disappear in a second, he's mostly relegated that twitch to the back of his mind.

Okay, meeting their possible offspring? Made Xander's brain explode. Made Xander's heart explode. Helped.

Meeting Bridge's parents? Well on the one hand, he's not in tiny card jail. But there was that incident with Bridge's mom holding a knife on him.


Other stuffs

Insanely OCD list of Things in the Buffyverse That Changed In Xander's AU, due to either the student evacuation that sent him off to FH in the first place, or to things Xander learned while in Fandom.

Fandom has a thing where every year, people mysteriously turn into kids.

And sometimes they turn into other things. Or AU versions of themselves. (Which category includes, aside from canon AUs, "characters played by the same actor" and "people with the same name." Seel(e)y Booth turned into pre-Angelus Liam; Darth Vader turned into......Mufasa.)

Occasionally the voicemail goes wonky.

__

And now I fleeeee.

byrne

2007-08-25 02:44 am (UTC) (Link)

So, you've not been doing much, huh?

*runs very fast*

Dude. That's...... wow.

mpoetess

2007-08-25 07:24 am (UTC) (Link)

I believe the word you are looking for is "insane."

bunnyohare

2007-08-25 02:44 am (UTC) (Link)

I've bookmarked this so that one day when I'm *cough* sick in bed and not in work for several days I'll have something fab to read. :)

mpoetess

2007-08-25 07:30 am (UTC) (Link)

Hee! *sucks your souuuuuuuul away*

brightone

2007-08-25 02:55 am (UTC) (Link)

*stares*

I am both impressed and frightened by the thoroughness of this write up.

timjr

2007-08-25 03:26 am (UTC) (Link)

I second that sentiment.

mpoetess

2007-08-25 07:32 am (UTC) (Link)

I dunno if it's reassuring or scary that this was cannibalized from at least 3 different OOC posts, so the bulk of it already existed in some form or another.

I know where "I almost started the subject line for this post with "OOC:" falls, though/

kimera

2007-08-25 05:56 am (UTC) (Link)

OMG YOU LEFT OUT KIDSWEEKEND. And there should so be a link to the post where they're not so much with the being exes anymore. *is very self centered yes*

mpoetess

2007-08-25 07:23 am (UTC) (Link)

:-P

*edits*

Now it includes kids, weetiny people, ferrets, newts, voicemail, stupid skirty bits, and WHOREBRIDGEY.

innerbrat

2007-08-25 09:33 am (UTC) (Link)

The very concept of me doing one of those for my milliways_bar characters freaks me the fuck out.

Luckily nothing's happened to Claire in FH, so that's OK...

mpoetess

2007-08-27 02:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Yeah, had I not done periodic bits of this along the way, I'd be laughing hysterically at the idea of going back and summing it all up now. Even as it is I'm looking at it going, "I left out this, and that, and this..."

wesleysgirl

2007-08-25 11:27 am (UTC) (Link)

Okay, I'm definitely going to have to read this at some point! Because I NEED this guide if I'm to have any hope at understanding, LOL!

mpoetess

2007-08-27 02:40 pm (UTC) (Link)

The Fandom High Website is good for understanding what's going on in general and how posts get structured and stuff. Plus?

We have a wiki.

(Deleted comment)

mpoetess

2007-08-27 03:10 pm (UTC) (Link)

:-D

It's so hard to follow everything even when one's actually in the game. The nightly in-character radio post that summarizes and links to events of the day is a boon, but even so, it's a matter of hunt-and-peck on whether you can trace what's happened to one particular character over time, or follow all the threads of a plot.

trepkos

2007-08-26 08:22 am (UTC) (Link)

You do lead an interesting life, Mr Beeblebrox, Sir!

mpoetess

2007-08-27 03:15 pm (UTC) (Link)

Oh, I'm just this guy, you know...

lumenara

2007-08-27 09:11 pm (UTC) (Link)

So, ah... do I have to be playing to read the filtered posts? *cough*

mpoetess

2007-08-27 09:22 pm (UTC) (Link)

*snicker*

They're filtered due to the whole LJ strikethrough blargle, despite never really getting beyond a light R-rating. It just seems better to be paranoid than sorry, I think, given that a majority of the characters in the game are by nature underage. I can add you to them, given I know you're well over 18 and not likely to mistake fiction for real life.

lumenara

2007-08-27 09:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Heeee.

Excellent, thank you.

snglesrvngfrend

2007-08-28 02:41 pm (UTC) (Link)

This? Is utterly fascinating. It took me a few nights to read it through but I'm totally sucked in. How does one become a part of this confabulation? 'sit as complicated as it looks?

mpoetess

2007-08-28 03:08 pm (UTC) (Link)

The admin-types take applications for student and teacher characters during a set period before each fake-school-semester starts; the Fall '07 ones are already closed and the new characters have been announced. The next application period will probably be in December, for the semester starting in January of 08 (though the times vary a bit as the admins, who are also all players, adjust stuff around new plans and such).

The applications for townie characters, people who run or work at a business, are always open, though.

Those have to be over-18 (or an adult of whateverthehell species they are) and can't ever become students at the school, though there's the possibility of later applying an existing townie to be a teacher, if the idea for a good class comes up that would work for the character. (Basically because the townie application process and play requirements are a bit looser than the other types, they want to make sure people don't apply a character as a townie just to get them into the game, with an eye to switching status as soon as the opportunity opens. They want townie characters to actually have a reason to be townies, since it's a much smaller group and it needs all the stability it can get.)

It's mind-eating and time-consuming and everyone ever should do it. ;-)