Harry and his crew belong to JK Rowling; Buffy and the Scoobs are property of Joss Whedon. I am making no money from this, so PLEASE don’t sue me.Summary:
Hermione has a pen pal from Sunnydale, California, and assumes that he’s normal. Andrew has a pen pal from London, England, and she’s about as strange as they come; only he doesn’t know it. What happens when they meet and share their stories?A/N:
Alright, so, I pulled this story after I decided to take it in a different direction. After massive rewrites and the like, here is the new, and improved, Snail Mail. Reviews are appreciated, constructive criticism is always welcome and flames will be used to toast marshmallows.Snail MailChapter 1
Hermione Granger sighed as she flopped onto her couch as if boneless. She’d had a hard day at work in Research and Development at the Ministry, and all she wanted to do was take a nice long soak in the tub and go straight to bed. However, before she could do that, she had to sort through her mail. She picked up the pile of letters that had been dropped into her mailbox earlier, muttering to herself as she flipped through them.
“Bill…bill…note from the super…junk…junk…death threat from the neighbors…bill…”
She got to the bottom of the pile, and her eyes widened when she saw who the last missive was from. Oh crap, she thought. Maybe I should have written him back sooner. Gingerly, she tore open the plain envelope and took out the ordinary lined paper. Well, it would have been ordinary if it hadn’t been crammed with frenzied writing.Hermione,
Why haven’t you phoned? Why haven’t you written? Why haven’t you given me any indication that you’re alive and breathing? Don’t you love me anymore? -pouts-
I’m sick with worry, you know…I’m beginning to think our little tryst doesn’t matter anymore. Fifteen years, Hermione…fifteen years and not even a good-bye? How could you!
Hermione could only laugh at this; she knew Andrew was being overdramatic, he always was. He’d always exaggerate things; when he told her about a prom at his school, she had laughed for days, causing Ron and Harry to call her nutters. Seriously, who could think up flying monkeys crashing a prom?I’ve half a mind to stop writing to you, you know. Don’t you care about what’s happening in my life? I mean, I know it’s not as interesting as graduating at the top of your class, being valedictorian and whatnot, but you could at least pretend to be interested. Aren’t you worried about my traumatizing experience of losing my best friend?
Hermione couldn’t help but feel bad. She had a pretty good reason why she hadn’t been writing, but it wasn’t one she could tell her obviously Muggle pen pal. She’d lost a lot of people in the war against Voldemort, and was working on getting her life back on track.
Harry and Ron both played professional Quidditch with Puddlemere United. It was almost like a reunion of sorts; Oliver Wood was captain, Harry played Seeker and Ron played chaser and reserve Keeper. Because of their busy schedules, Hermione rarely saw them anymore, but whenever they were in town, they got together for a couple of drinks.
Hermione, to no one’s surprise, worked at the Ministry, in Research and Development in the Experimental Charms division. She was hired for her brains, but for the most part she was performing menial tasks like fetching coffee and files for the higher-ups. Rather dull work, but you had to start out somewhere, right?
Snapping out of her musings, Hermione turned back to the letter in her hand. She outright laughed out loud when she read the next part.I bet you’ve stopped reading by now. Typical, typical Hermione…can’t find anything of interest, so you leave poor ‘ickle me out in the cold. How could you, Hermione, how could you?
Anyway, moving along…I finally moved out of my ‘lair’ and I am now living with a bunch of people in Cleveland. I don’t know if you heard, but Sunnydale is no more. Gas leak…really, really big gas leak. The town council wasn’t so up on that, and it could have cost us our lives. What would you have done without me, Hermione? Could you have continued on without my companionship, even though I live on the other side of the planet?
Please, please, please, please, please, please, please, PLEASE write me back, I don’t know how I could bear it any longer. I want to know how you’re doing; I want to see your tiny cramped writing. I want to smell your perfume on the paper…
Until later, my love.
Your traumatized knight,
Just as Hermione was folding the letter, someone apparated in front of her with a soft pop. She screamed slightly, but when she saw who it was, she smacked the smugly smirking man on the arm.
“Harry James Potter!” she exclaimed. “How many times have I told you not to do that?”
“Not enough, apparently,” Harry replied with a grin. He saw the letter in her hand. “What’s that you’ve got there, Hermione?”
“It’s nothing,” Hermione replied, hiding the letter behind her back. Unfortunately, she hadn’t counted on Ron being behind her, in perfect position to snatch the letter.
“Oh Merlin, she’s writing to that ponce again,” Ron said with a grimace.
“Krum or Wells?” Harry asked, going over to Ron and reading over his shoulder.
“Wells,” Ron replied. He waved the letter in front of the other man’s face. “Look at this thing! It’s full of sentimental crap and weepy love declarations.”
Hermione was quick for someone who didn’t do sports, and she snatched the letter back from her redheaded best friend. She glared at the two of them, and they mock-cowered.
“I write to him because I believe in keeping ties with almost every friendly face I meet,” Hermione replied. “I’ve known Andrew longer than I’ve known you two, you know, and I believe in keeping contact with people who have piques my interest. Now, if you two don’t mind, I’m going to write back to him before he hops onto the next direct flight to Heathrow.”
With a huff, Hermione turned and headed towards her study, leaving Ron and Harry in the sitting room.
“Mental, that one,” said Ron.
“You’re telling me,” agreed Harry.
Andrew Wells stood next to the mailbox in front of the house he shared with five other people, when they weren’t out and about, traveling the world. It was a huge house, paid for by the Watcher’s Council funds, and there was enough room for all of them, and plenty to spare if anyone had the urge to visit. More than once, Andrew had wondered where Hermione would stay if she ever had the inkling to visit.
He couldn’t ponder much longer, because at that moment he saw the mailman at the other end of the block. Trying not to look like an overexcited puppy and failing miserably, Andrew waited for the postman to come to his box.
Meanwhile, inside the house, the occupants that were there were watching Andrew and his slightly odd behavior. The ones at the house that day were Xander, Willow, Dawn and Faith, the latter visiting from her travels with Robin.
“What the hell is he doing?” asked Faith, who hadn’t been around for the last week or so.
“Waiting, obviously,” Xander replied. “Though for what, I’m not sure.”
“It’s a letter, Xander,” Dawn replied. “He’s waiting for a letter from his British pen pal.”
The other three people stared at her as if she had grown an extra head or had just morphed into a mucus demon.
“How do you know that?” asked Willow. “Because it looks to me like he’s about to pee his pants.”
“He told me, that’s how,” Dawn replied matter-of-factly. “I know you guys think he’s annoying, and he knows that you think that…”
“Then why doesn’t he move out?” asked Xander, cutting the younger girl off. “Or at least, couldn’t he move out of the basement? I claimed it, after all!”
“You’re whining, Xander,” Willow said.
“If you guys would let me finish,” Dawn said, sighing exasperatedly and rolling her eyes. “Andrew lives here with us because, besides his pen pal, we’re the only people in this world who have even shown him a modicum of kindness. He’s known this girl since he was nine years old, and by the look of it is his only friend.”
They were interrupted by an excited yell. Turning back to the window, they saw Andrew jumping up and down like a kid who had had one too many candies, holding a letter. The mailman shook his head and continued on his route as Andrew ran up to the house and burst through the door.
“It came…it finally came…” he muttered in glee, tearing open the envelope as he ignored everyone else. He unfolded the paper and read it, muttering under his breath as he scanned the tiny script.Dear Andrew,
Dear God, could you be any clingier? I’ve been busy settling into my new job. Besides, it’s not like you’ve been prolific with the letter-writing. Practice what you preach, Drew.
I can see that kicked puppy expression now. I’m joking, okay? You know how much I adore you, even if you are a little on the overdramatic side. –winks- Ron and Harry still refer to you as ‘that ponce’. I’ve told you about Ron and Harry haven’t I? They don’t agree with our friendship, but they know about it. However, when I told them that I’d choose you over them if I could, they shut up about it.
Big gas leak, eh? You mean there’s such a thing as a BIGGER gas leak than the one that blew up your high school at graduation? I’m surprised that no one got hurt. You’re okay, right? Of course you are; you wouldn’t have been writing to me if you weren’t okay.
So Cleveland, eh? What caused you to move there? It’s a bit different from California, isn’t it? Colder for one. Darker for another. Of course, it has nothing on Scotland in the middle of winter, but it’s something you’re not used to, isn’t it? Besides, who are these people you moved with? I hope they aren’t loonies like the last people you lived with. Yes, I know Jonathan and Warren were your best friends, but I still think they were a bad influence on you.
Anyway, to the point of this letter. Yes, there is a point. I’ve been thinking—scary prospect, I know. But anyway, we’ve known each other for over fifteen years, and yet we’ve never met. So, I propose that we meet. I’ll even pay for your airfare if you can’t manage it. I don’t need an answer just yet; think about it and talk it over with your friends. If it isn’t the right time, then I completely understand.
Just…think about it, okay? I’d like to discuss the merits of Deanna Troi and Commander Richer’s relationship in person for a change, with someone who knows what the bloody hell I’m talking about.
Sending even more love,
P.S.-I know you save all of my letters in a shoe box under your bed, so don’t you dare say you only wanted me to write because you wanted to smell my perfume!
P.P.S.-I’m sure you have a computer, so here’s my email address. It should make our correspondence quicker, for the sake of practicality. Don’t you agree?
Andrew read the letter three more times, just to make sure he wasn’t imagining things. At the bottom was an e-mail address, just as she had said. However, it was the previous statement that really got him. She wanted him to visit her? In England? They’d talked about visiting before, but Hermione couldn’t in previous times because she went to some prestigious boarding school in the Scottish highlands. They had almost met after she had graduated, but then her parents died in a tragic car accident and she didn’t feel right taking a trip so soon afterwards. Now, however, they might be able to pull it off…
With a grin, Andrew bounded down the stairs to the basement, which he shared with Xander. The foursome that had been watching him just looked at each other in bewilderment.
“What’s gotten into him?” wondered Xander aloud.
Okay, so…thoughts? Do I keep going? I love the premise, hence why I’m writing it, but if everyone thinks its crap I’m not going to continue.