Disclaimer - I don't own Buffy or her friends, or the Winchesters and their respective world. - They belong to their respective owners.
Set after Season 7 Buffy and Season 1 Supernatural
A/N Thought I wouldn’t muck up the Buffy time line, but hey guess what I did, well I think I did. Therefore, I thought I would update this to say that I am silly and sorry, and to explain. So next time I muck up please let me know ‘cause I’m very new to this.
The majority of Buffy/Supernatural sister stories I’ve read have her as the little sis - so what would happen if she was the big sister instead, so I’ve added a couple years on to the Scoobies ages, but that is all I’ve changed. So, Sunnydale still sunk in 2003 because I had no idea how to get round that one.
It was made of wood with carvings of swirls and flowers on the lid. It had a myriad of coloured splodges on the sides from the hundreds of little accidents that had occurred over the years, some of which were smeared from the failed attempts to remove them. In truth, it was no different from the thousands like it, a carved wooden box that could be found in most malls around the world.
This one held chalks and paints and the accompanying bits and bobs that people accumulate over the years. The things that are put away in places that you think are safe and private. Things that tend to be forgotten; either from simple absentmindedness, or they just seem to disappear into the metaphorical ether just when they are needed the most.
In truth, everyone has something like it, a little box or file where they keep things. But, in this case the box’s primary purpose was to keep art supplies, it was however, also special to a few for other reasons. It had belonged to her; she had bought it when she still had dreams of being an artist in her own right. However, as time went on, dreams changed, life happened, and now it provided link to the past, though it still contained art supplies. That was the real reason it was treasured.
Every time Dawn opened the lid, she felt warm inside; it reminded her of the times she had watched her Mom use it, of the times that Joyce had let her paint. It had been a special thing that her and her mother had shared, something that her sister never really had gotten, even when she didn’t have a destiny to fulfil. But Buffy had understood what it had meant to Dawn, and what it symbolised.
For that reason, it was one of the few things that had made it onto the bus, that and a stuffed pink pig, whose sole purpose was not for the fighting of evil.
The irony is that if Dawn had not been so attached to that box of art supplies no one would have known, so many lives would not have been affected, and the truth would never come to light.
The sun came through the attic skylight and she knew that the present was late, but she wanted it to be just right. Willow and Kennedy deserved nothing less.
The past few years, though hectic, had been relatively good to them all; sure, there had been the highs and the lows, the time when Angel and the gang had gone missing. In the end Spike and Illyria had come out the other end - no one was sure what had happened to Angel. Spike had his theories, but kept most of them to himself, though there had been rumours and sightings, nothing could be confirmed.
Both Buffy and Faith had taken his disappearance hard; and the loss of Gunn and Wesley had hit them all, but the fact that they had gone down fighting was a testament to them. Their story would go down in legend. Illyria had sworn to destroy the rest of Wolfram and Hart and all others responsible for Wes’s death. As for Spike, well as he said, “Who else is going to keep the Smurf out of trouble?” Both of them had made it to the service.
Giles had taken up residence in England rebuilding the council; he even had Andrew running around doing a lot of the footwork. Xander had settled back in North America, organizing and training, even had time to keep track of Spike and Lyri from time to time. He had had some trouble keeping the peace between the non-trouble making demons, and the demon hunting community, they were all coming round.
Faith loved South America, and even when she and Robin were having one of their on/off moments, they were still a formidable team. Rona was getting in touch with her African heritage, Vi was living it large in the land down under, and Choa Ann had set up a very efficient training house in Beijing. Willow and Kennedy, after helping Faith and Robin, had travelled, finally setting up home in St. Petersburg.
This had left the rest of Europe for Buffy, which had taken the form of a grand European tour for her and Dawn after school had finished, however that was about to end as the younger sister had gotten into Oxford.
Giles had been so proud when she told him, “At least one of the Summers will finally finish her education!”
Right now Buffy was happy, even though things with The Immortal had cooled. That had been inevitable, especially after Angel. Xander had said it was for the best and that she could do better - though Dawn had thought he was just glad that he no longer had to deal with questions from Spike on the subject.
Yes, threats had come and gone, slayers found and lost, but at present, it was calm no big bad coming round the mountain. Therefore, the girls had decided that they were going to take advantage - and everyone had came.
Willow had looked so beautiful in her silk ivory gown and Xander had been so proud. Though, as he walked her down the aisle, he had joked that he could still create a diversion and she could make a run for it if she had gotten cold feet. It wouldn’t have been right if he hadn’t cracked a line.
Kennedy had looked so serene, nervous, and happy all at the same time, as she had walked down towards the altar with Giles. The ceremony had been perfect just before dawn, with a mix of races in attendance, demon, human, slayer and wiccan.
If only she had gotten the painting finished in time. It wasn’t as if she didn’t have a good reason - they had just gotten in when children had started to disappear in Wales, and then there was the meeting of everyone at the airport. Now the hullabaloo was now over, and Dawn ‘the Artist’ Summers could finish her masterpiece for the happy couple.
Of course, that would mean finishing the sky, which would mean that she would need the white, which always fell to the bottom, next to the old chalk and the paper lining. Paper with writing on it - she had never noticed that before.
It was in handwriting that she recognised - it was probably some old shopping list or her Mom confessing to a secret crush on David Cassidy. As Dawn carefully pulled the old pages out of the box she saw that they were neither - they were old diary entries. As Dawn read, the brush slipped out of her hand and the one word that she could form in her head was the name of the only other person in the cottage at that moment.
“Dean. Wake up.”
His vision started to clear, and the off-white ceiling tiles started to come into focus.
“Sammy? If that’s you, it’s too early,” he said, turning over in his bed.
Sam shook his head, “No, it’s not dude. It’s discharge day - you can’t put it off any longer.”
Dean stretched, “Christ, is it really morning?”
Dean looked over his shoulder and looked at his eager beanpole of brother, who was standing in the doorway with a wheelchair.
“Your chariot awaits!” announced Sam, with a big grin on his face.
It had been just over six weeks since the car had been blindsided by the semi; two of which Sam and his father had to sit, wait and pray over Dean’s unconscious form. Two whole weeks where the middle member of the Winchester family had been unable to fulfil his role as referee to John and Sam’s never ending fight. Two weeks in which John and Sam had reached an understanding, that all else was on hold until they were sure that Dean was out of the woods.
This unfortunately had lead to the phone call, which neither man had wanted to make. But when it was clear that they were to be discharged before they knew what was going to happen to Dean, it needed to be made.
Bobby could take care of the car and the weapons, one more heap in his yard wouldn’t be noticed. But, with John’s leg in a cast and Sam’s cracked ribs, and of course not knowing what aftercare would be needed for his eldest; desperate times called for desperate measures.
So, the gruff, take no crap from anyone, ex marine summoned up all his courage, knowing well enough that Dean would kill him for doing this.
“Missouri, I was wondering and I understand if you don’t want to, but with Dean being in the state he’s in and with Sam, I was hoping that you could put us up for a while?”
So a few weeks later, Dean Winchester was being wheeled - against his will as he had stated many times to his little brother, to the hell that was known as Missouri Mosley’s house. Where he would eat good nutritious food and not roadside diner grease; he would have clean clothes, sleep on sheets he knew had been washed; and for a short time, he would be mothered to within an inch of his life. Sam knew that for all his brother’s protesting, he would at least on a subconscious level, love every minute of it.
As they came to the nurses’ station, the two boys saw the small little black woman standing talking to the nurse behind the desk; she had a look etched on her face that expressed both concern and impatience.
“Well boy - you took your sweet time,” she said, looking down at the figure in the wheel chair.
“It’s a hospital, they don’t keep you in for no reason,” Dean answered, in a cocky tone.
He saw the blanket in her hand - the fussing had begun. He looked up at Sam, as she took the bag of medication from the top of the desk and put it in her bag, and then proceeded to go for the blanket.
“If you think that you are putting that over me, think again!”
Sam just looked at Missouri and then to his brother, he bit his bottom lip - the next few weeks were going to be fun.
“Okay child - but if you catch a chill just because you want to preserve your image then don’t complain to me!” She turned and started to walk away. “It’s not like you have anyone left to impress, these ladies have been looking after you and have probably seen everything you got anyway.”
Dean started to grumble under his breath; she stopped in her tracks and turned pointing a finger directly at him.
“Don’t you even think that young man!”
At that point, Sam could no longer hold it in - he burst into laughter.
“Oh, you are so enjoying this, aren’t you?” responded his brother in a sulky voice.
Sam reined in his amusement in for a second, “Dad’s waiting dude.”
Dean asked, “Where is he?”
“Your father is outside, by the time he’d have gotten up here it would have been time for supper, and we have a long enough drive,” responded Missouri.
“His cast is coming off next week. So until then we have the old man captive,” added Sam.
As Sam wheeled his brother down the front entrance, he noticed his brother’s load seemed to lighten when they saw their father standing in front of the old station wagon. He was on crutches with his right leg encased in plaster, but he had a look of relief on his face as he saw his boys - both of his boys, together in the light of day, and not under hospital lights waiting for doctors and test results.
“I can’t tell her. I can’t Xander.”
Dawn paced back and forth ringing her hands, trying to get the paint off, as Xander stood in the doorway thoughtfully thumbing his way through the half dozen torn pages in his hands.
“We don’t know if there is anything to tell yet.”
He tried to sound reassuring, knowing full well, that this was no longer the 14- year-old who would hang on his every word.
“Nothing to tell? This is huge - this is life changing, you do know what this could mean?”
“Yes I do understand what this could mean Dawn; and you are starting to sound hysterical.”
Dawn stopped pacing and took a step closer to the man in the doorway, at the same time taking a deep breath, and in a calm tone, or as calm as she could muster at that point, she replied, “Hysterical? To be honest I think that I’m taking this rather calmly, thank you very much.”
“Yes, you are, but as I’m guessing that you want to talk about this, so getting upset at the beginning of the conversation won’t do you any good,”
She looked at him, tilting her head to one side, “You swallow a therapy book or something?”
“No. But I work with teenagers, all of which are female.”
“So this gives you an insight into the female mind?” she said slightly insulted.
“No, just the hormonally imbalanced insane ones,” he grinned, causing her to crack a smile and relax for a second.
“You need to get out more.”
Xander stood there for a second, “Yeah - I need more male friends, human ones, there’s too much estrogen flying about at home and a night out with the guys should not involve keeping Clem out of the Yak urine vat.”
“How’s it working out with him being in Cleveland?”
“Good - he’s a great help with the laundry,” he said, as he crossed his arms.
“Don’t the girls help?” she asked, though she was not surprised.
“Not really, and he says that the fabric softener goes great with cheese.”
He changed his tone, “Don’t get me wrong, I love you guys but when it gets to the point when I’m glad to see Spike or Christ, even Andrew, I need time off from the girls.”
She looked at him and trying to sound helpful, “A girl of your own might help.”
“Dawn, don’t start on that.”
“It’s been three years since Anya. We’re all worried about you, you know. You’re all alone over there and we’ve got people, and our little missions,” she said, trying to broach a subject that obviously been a point of discussion.
“Dawn, I do try and get out there, but you know how hard it is. I’m playing den mother to seven impressionable girls who have seemed to have decided that the only manly pursuits that I’m gonna get time for are scratching, belching and DIY."
He tried to rethink where this was going.
“Dawn, the last date I went on was interrupted by Inez and Mel turning up at the restaurant demanding the keys to the flame thrower cabinet. Anyway, what about your love life?” he said, shifting the conversation onto her.
“Please have you met my overprotective sister? I’m lucky if I get a guy through the door before she starts.”
“She gotten worse since splitting with, you know?”
Dawn looked at him for a second, “Yeah, though lately she’s lightened up a bit - she’s stopped checking for a pulse.”
“With her track record can you blame her? She only wants the best for you.”
“Like Mom did when she hid this from us?”
“So, we back to you putting a new groove in Giles’ floor then?” he asked, not expecting her to reply to the comment.
“I just can’t believe Mom would do something like this, and not say a word, for all those years.”
“Not that I’m saying what she did was right, in anyway, but in her mind it was all done with and there was no point in dredging up the past.”
“Xander, look at this look at what she wrote. Not dredging up the past? This is a bombshell!”
“It doesn’t make a difference about how she felt about you guys - she was your Mom.”
“But she lied! She lied to us all.” Dawn started to shake, her fists were clenched; he pulled her tight into him hugging her as she crumpled in his arms.
“What if it's true?” she asked him.
“You don’t know if it is. If it only happened once chances are.”
“It only has to happen once Xander, you know that!”
“Yeah I know.”
She started to weep, “I don’t know what I’m going to tell her, I can’t not, you know.”
He sighed, he wanted to protect her - protect both of them from this.
“Do you want me to?” Xander asked.
“No!" said Dawn in a defiant tone, "but I have to find some way to tell her, gently.”
“With Buffy? Gentle is never going to work.”
“Maybe if we wait till we’re by ourselves?” she asked.
“She’ll need everyone around her Dawnie.”
He thought for a second before running through the departures, “Spike left this morning, Robin and Faith last night; so it’s just us and Kennedy.”
“Will you stay?” she looked up at him with tears welling up in her eyes.
He hugged her tightly, his heart breaking.
“As long as you need me kiddo. I’ll be here.”
Willow ran up the stairs, she couldn’t wait for the unveiling. Dawn’s paintings had really come along in the past couple of years. The childish aspect of her work had begun to disappear and a real vision had started to take hold; both hope and realism, had begun to shine through. Dawn had been so apologetic about it not being ready for the wedding, but she wanted to be prefect for them just like their big day.
It was going to be a quick peak to see how she was doing.
Buffy and Giles were seeing Vi off at the airport and Kennedy was off running errands, they’d all be back soon - so a quick peak wouldn’t do any harm.
As she opened the door, she saw the sobbing figure of Dawn in Xander’s arms. He waved his hand telling her to wait.
“Dawn?” she asked concerned, causing the weeping figure to look up and on seeing her friend started to dry her eyes.
“I’m okay Will, just give me a minute.”
Willow looked at the other occupant in the room.
“We’ll be down in a minute, okay,” he said, taking control of the situation.
Willow was about to close the door but stopped for a second to add, “I’ll be downstairs if you need me.”
“Thanks,” Xander nodded.
She put the kettle on and got the mugs ready, then went to get the milk out of the fridge. She glanced up the stairs, wishing that they would come down. Everything had been going so well, everyone had been happy; maybe they had gotten some bad news when she was out - no one had died, well not supernaturally.
Spike and Lyri had gotten on the cargo plane okay; Faith’s plane wasn’t stopping in the US or any country that had an extradition treaty at least. Xander was okay - he had not said anything was wrong, and the hell mouth was quiet at the moment, she would have sensed if anything was wrong.
Suddenly it hit her, “God he’s sick. I’ve been so caught up with stuff that I haven’t felt it and he’s just told Dawn - that’s it!”
She shouldn’t pry, but a quick look wouldn’t hurt - just to prepare herself for the worse.
“No you don’t young lady!” he said, as he walked down the wooden staircase into the kitchen.
“Don’t what?” she asked, in a guilty tone, as she continued to get the tea ready.
“You know, snoop,” he said, as he waved his hand in the air.
She dropped the teabags in the pot, “I wouldn’t do that.”
“Will - you’ve got to be careful with that. You’re going to damn yourself one day, you know. She’ll be down in a minute.”
Willow opened her mouth to say something, but he beat her to it.
“And before you ask - no-one is sick, dying, pregnant, possessed, bankrupt, in the processes of losing their soul, or being pulled into another reality!”
“What?” Willow tilted her head and broke into a smile.
“I’ve covered everything haven’t I?” asked Xander.
“Think so, but are you sure?”
“Yes, I’m sure,” he replied, “And I don’t need your gifts to see it - so stay out of our heads. Where is the sugar?”
“Tea’s up then?” Dawn asked, her face was puffy and her eyes red, and she had a fragile smile on her face.
“You know the British, cup of tea; stiff upper lip and the entire world will be alright, ducky.”
Willow looked at Xander, “Milk and sugar is on the table and Mr. Van Dyke here will get the biscuits.”
“Oh come on you two,” he said as he picked up the pack of hob knobs, “You’re a tough audience.”
“Xander, I’ve seen Clanic demons with better impressionist skills,” said the red head.
“They don’t have vocal chords!” said Xander, slightly insulted.
“Exactly!” responded both women in unison.
“So you okay now?” asked the concerned Willow, as Dawn sat down at the table.
“Will,” interrupted Xander, who was still standing by the kitchen counter.
“It's alright,” Dawn said to her protector, “She’ll find out sooner or later. It’ll affect the whole family.”
“I’m just thinking that you might want to talk to your sister first,” advised Xander.
Dawn looked into her tea, as if it held all the answers.
“Yeah, but just in case,” Dawn continued to peer into the mug.
Willow looked at Xander understanding what had just been said, it was just them in the house and Kennedy wasn’t due back for a while. Whatever this was, if it was big enough to make Dawn this concerned and get in this state; if Buffy actually physically lost it, it would be up to her to hold her.
Willow turned back to Dawn, “Dawn, What happened?”
Dawn looked straight into Willow’s eyes to see not her quiet and steady friend but the Guardian, The Witch staring back at her.
“I found some of my Mom’s old diary entries - she cheated on Dad and … Buffy … well Dad might not be her father.”
“I’ll eat most things, but I take exception to grey mush first thing in the morning.”
He pushed the oatmeal round the bowl as if he was 5 years old.
“Dean, eat your breakfast,” said Sam.
“Did I ask for your input geek boy?”
“No, but you need to eat, Dean," reiterated Sam.
“Yeah food, not mush!” stated Dean as he continued to push the food with his spoon.
“If you don’t eat you’ll know what will happen!” replied Sam in an irritated tone.
John stood silently at the doorway watching his sons bicker as they did when they were children. Though this time the roles had been reversed, how many times had he seen it before and how many times had it ended with Sammy being pinned to the floor with Dean spoon-feeding him lucky charms?
Given enough encouragement, Sam would have his revenge. Though, for today at least Dean would be safe from being pushed off his chair and having oatmeal shoved in his face.
“You finish that child, you hear me!” Missouri said, as she flitted round the table, giving Sam a cup of coffee.
“All I need is coffee Missouri,” he looked at her, with hope in his hazel green eyes.
She looked at him, “You’ve been unconscious and in hospital for the best part of two months you’ve got to build up your strength.”
“Right, but I’ve been in solids for a while you know. Toast, I can handle toast - that okay?"
But, it was too late, she had disappeared into the kitchen.
“Best not argue with her son,” said John.
Dean looked dejected at his father before turning to his brother, “Pass the sugar, will you?”
She leafed through the pages, while picturing a young Joyce, scared and alone, as she penned the words, and then tearing them out of the book before hiding them just in case the worse had happened and questions had to be answered.
“Well what do you think?” asked Dawn hoping for reassurance.
“You have to tell her,” stated Willow, reiterating the answer Dawn already knew.
Dawn, looked at her, unsure of what to do next, “How? - What do I say? - How will she take it?”
“I don’t know on all of those. But, we’ll be here for both of you,” answered Willow.
Dawn choked back the tears, which had begun to rise again.
“Know what?” asked the woman at the doorway.
“Dawn, are you okay?" asked Buffy, seeing the redness in her sister's eyes.
Xander stood up straight, taking his hand off the kitchen worktop that he had been leaning on.
“Buffy, you should sit down.”
Buffy tensed, “What’s happened?”
Dawn looked at her sister, who in a quiet whispered tone said, “Please sit.”
“I’ll get the brandy,” said Willow, as she jumped up from the table; before Xander caught her eye, causing her to sit down again.
“Coward!” he said, to his best friend, “I’ll get it okay, you stay!”
“Get what? I heard the word brandy, that wouldn’t be my brandy would it?” asked the tall Englishman, who had followed Buffy inside.
“Yes big fella, and you can help me get it while the girls talk.”
As Giles and Xander left the kitchen, Buffy pulled out a chair and in a sombre tone asked the others,
“No-one,” replied Dawn.
“No-one,” replied Willow.
“What then?” asked the confused Buffy.
Dawn solemnly admitted, “I found these in Mom’s paint box.”
She passed the pieces of paper to her sister and let her digest the words left to them by their mother. She watched the woman in front of her and waited for her reaction as the atmosphere in the room chilled.
Buffy turned to her younger sister with a harsh look in her eye, “Is this for real?”
“This is real,” Dawn answered, anticipating this reaction.
Buffy looked at her sister, “No. This is some sick joke Dawn.”
“They are real. I found them in Mom’s art box.”
The slayer turned to Willow, the one she trusted as the last word in all matters to do with information.
“They aren’t faked, and I can’t sense anything demonic about them,” confirmed the witch.
She sat there silently stunned - something that they didn’t expect, they expected anger, possibly rage but not this.
Xander put the large brandy down in front of the slayer, though she barely seemed to register it.
“What is going on?” asked Giles as he handed a glass to Willow.
Three of the four younger members of the group looked at each other unsure of what to say. This was Buffy's news so it was up to her to speak.
But, it was the youngest member of the group that spoke up. “Giles, I…”
“Mom cheated on Dad.” came the curt interruption, from her older sister.
“Pardon?” replied the shocked Englishman.
He had no time for Hank Summers; his behaviour towards his daughters after Joyce’s death had left him in no doubt about the man. However, he could never image Joyce being unfaithful.
Dawn reached over and placed her hand over her sister’s as Buffy went on, “Yeah, Mom had a little fling!”
Her voice started to waver, “So instead of being the product of couple in love - I maybe the result of a quick fumble up against some alley wall.”
Giles looked at Xander before bending down beside the woman whom he considered to be the daughter he never had. He thought of all of them as his children, in a way, he’d spent more time with them than their actual parents, with the exception of Joyce.
They’d all lost something that day - the image of the woman they had all loved had been tarnished. The cold reality of the stupid things, normal everyday people could do had crept into their little world of demons and apocalypses.
“I’m sure it wasn’t like that,” he said, as he took the pages from her hand.
“Yes it is,” Buffy replied.
He saw the tears beginning to well in her eyes, the little girl crying from inside was begging him to “Make it all go away. Please make it all alright again,” this from his warrior, the leader, the person he’d seen face down thousand dangers begging him to make it all better again.
He looked at the paper in his hand and taking a sip from the glass in his other, he read a few lines of his old friend’s confession. “Oh God I’m late. It was so stupid I know I shouldn’t have stormed out. I know he was telling me the truth, that waitress, she was coming on to him and he told her to go away. But I was so angry at him, I should of stayed, I should have had it out with him there and then and not just stormed off, not gone to that bar, not gotten drunk, not done...
I just pray I’m going to wake up from this nightmare - but it wasn’t a dream was it? - Look at me I’m asking a bit of paper questions, like that is going to help.
Jesus, I don’t even know his name - I think he said it was John, but how do I know? He seemed nice, but I was upset and angry and not thinking straight… No if I am pregnant, it’s Hank’s. We have been talking about a baby and things have been getting better.
But what if its not … I’m pregnant by some soldier I picked up in a bar somewhere just to get even.”
“She didn’t even know his whole name. Isn’t that great? My biological father could be some drunk in a bar somewhere,” Buffy sniffed, as she tried to hold back the tears.
Giles looked at her and still examining the papers in his hand, “You don’t know that - firstly she had a first name John - he appears to be a marine being discharged and on his way home … (he flicked through the pages) back to Kansas.”
Buffy replied, “An ex marine called John from Kansas, that narrows it down so much!”
A cough came from the other side of the table as the slim red head made her presence known - as both Giles and Buffy looked at her, Willow gave them one of her , “you know better to say that in front of me!" looks.
“Anyway what would I say to him if I did find him? Did you hook up with some girl in a bar in California in ‘78? Oh, you did - well I maybe your daughter. Come on that is so Sally Jesse,” Buffy said to the whole room.
Willow after taking a sip from her glass of brandy added, “It is there is you want it.”
“Will - we don’t know that Hank isn't Buffy’s Dad or even if she want to go there,” interjected Xander.
Will turned to Xander, “I’m just saying that it's on the table.”
“Doesn’t that fall under some Wiccan rule or something?” he asked.
“No, I’m not asking for myself and if you find him you can ask him to take a test to confirm things, if that makes you feel better.”
“What about Dad?” asked Dawn in a quiet voice.
“Dad? I hadn’t really thought - we haven‘t heard from him in so long,” responded her sister.
“There is nothing to tell him yet Dawn and if there is something to tell him, we can cross that bridge when we come to it … and all of us will be here to support both of you,” said Giles to the scared girl at his table.
“So what now?” Buffy asked in a proactive manner, “What do you need?”
“You sure of this?” asked Xander.
“Yes, I'm sure."
“I’ll need some herbs, a map and a little bit of blood,” said Willow listing her needs.