The Job Offer
An Ill-Advised Venture
Part of the TTH5000
Topic: Dawn/Anita Blake
Prompt: 15. Going into business.
Spoilers for the end of Buffy and up through Danse Macabre for AB
Disclaimer: Not mine.
Part 1-The Job Offer
Dawn Summers finished applying the make-up to her face and looked into the mirror. She had to admit that she looked good. She had brushed out her waist-length chestnut brown hair and twirled it into a bun at the top of her head, then added bobby pins with little garnets in them to keep the hair in place. The effect was that the bun looked as though it had gems sprinkled through it. She had then applied makeup as Tara had taught her to, once upon at time. Thinking about her sweet and shy role model still saddened Dawn, even after all this time. Although, at this point, thinking about anyone from Sunnydale, even her big sister, hurt.
Buffy would have died from laughter and maybe horror if she could see her little sister now. The Slayer’s baby sister had slipped on her classic little black dress, which, while clinging in all the right places and making her look fabulous, had a scoop neck and went demurely down to her knees, so it was still appropriate for an interview of this type. She put a brilliant crimson jacket over it. The jacket matched the 2 inch heels. She knew that her clothing was very dramatic, but when facing vampires, one always wanted to reach for the dramatic. You never knew who you might have to impress.
After they had closed the Hellmouth, the Scoobies had moved to Cleveland to find that creating slayers wasn’t the only thing Willow had done. The entire world now knew about vampires, and thought that they always had possessed that knowledge. The preternatural things they had dealt with alone in Sunnydale for so long were now publicly known. Within a few years, it had become illegal to kill a vampire without a warrant of arrest. Vampires were fricken citizens! They could even vote! Giles had been horrified, but Buffy and the other slayers had adapted, many becoming licensed as legal vampire hunters. Buffy and Faith now worked with the feds, which was totally and completely ironic. Willow had hacked into government files to create identities for all of them, since all of Sunnydale’s records had been destroyed, and had left off Faith little prison episode. Kennedy and Willow had opened a boarding school for the younger slayers, which was open to witches, were-beings and other preternatural kids who couldn’t really fit in to the average public school. Robin Wood was the principal.
And Dawn had moved on, after getting a dual degree in preternatural studies and business. She had chosen business because it was so mundane, so normal. And she needed some of that in her life. She had done an accelerated program and graduated on her 20th birthday.
The day after graduation, she was gone. She had moved around, but had avoided the preternatural hotspots in the country. She needed normal.
Oh, she wrote letters, but she hadn’t been back. It had been 6 years, and she’d seen only Giles, when she visited him in London the year before. He had understood her reasons for leaving. He seemed to be the only one, who despite his comments to the contrary, hadn’t expected her to join up with the watcher’s council after she finished school.
And now, Dawn was entering into a business venture that Buffy might very well kill her for.
She hadn’t been planning on working for a vampire, it had just kind of happened.
Okay, multiple vampires.
It had started with Dead Dave. She had started bartending at his place while getting a law degree from Washington University. She didn’t really need to work, since the council paid her a hefty sum each month as an allowance, but she tried to dip into that as rarely as possible, preferring to earn her own money and keep that in savings for emergencies. And the whole needing to be out on her own thing. People who could take care of themselves did not need allowances.
After bartending for Dave for 9 months, he had mentioned that a friend needed a manager for a few businesses he owned.
He hadn’t mentioned right away that that particular friend happened to be the Master of the City of Saint Louis. Dawn had been trying to avoid all master vamps as much as humanly possible. As far as Willow could tell, the new breed of vampires, all of whom remembered being alive for centuries, had either been imported from an alternate dimension, or Willow had created a new dimension with the spell. Either way, the powers that these new vamps exhibited freaked Dawn out.
So she had been less than eager once she had been given all the details.
Eventually, Dave had convinced her that this would be a good idea. She would be using both her degrees, getting good job experience in managing entertainment businesses, and he was sure that the master would want to utilize her law degree once she had it.
So here she was, in her small but cozy apartment, a mile from the district, making sure she looked impeccable so that she could go meet a master vampire and ask to be his lackey. Bug eating better not occur. Okay, she wasn’t asking to be a lackey, but it sure felt like it.
Satisfied with her appearance, she got into her car and drove to Guilty Pleasures.
Yes, it would horrify Buffy to no end if she found out that one of the places her baby sister was interviewing to manage was a strip club, and a lycanthrope/vampire strip club at that.
She knocked on the side door marked employees only, as she had been directed, and was let into the building by a short blonde with spiky hair, wearing a black silk bathrobe, and not much else.
He greeted her with sparkling eyes, and tried to flirt with her as he showed her to Jean Claude’s office.
She politely turned him down and walked through the door he held open for her. The door shut behind her, and he brought her eyes up to face the man standing by his desk. She was careful not to look in his eyes. The whole thrall thing that these vamps could do really freaked her out. She hadn’t really been around when Dracula came through town, but she had heard the stories.
“Miss Summers. It is a pleasure to finally meet you. I have heard much about you from Dave.”
“Mostly good, I hope?” She had learned the art of small talk much more efficiently than her older sister.
“But of course. Please, have a seat.”
He held the chair for her as she sat down. He sat across from her, but managed to not look intimidating over the black wood.
“Dave is more than complimentary about your abilities as a server and hostess, and says that you have been more than competent managing his bar. He would not lie to me, so I trust his judgment. I only have a few questions for you”
Dawn smiled, flattered that Dave had recommended her so highly.
“I will ask the less difficult question first. Do you have the ability to tell shifters and vampires what to do and stick to it, or will their superior strength keep you from being a competent manager? I must admit you are the first human I have considered for the job.”
Dawn smiled again. She had expected a much tougher question.
“Have you heard of the Joyce Summers School for the Gifted?”
“Of course. We have a few wolves in town who have attended, and my human servant has lectured at the school in the past.”
Dawn filed that tidbit away. She could not see any of the scoobies allowing a human servant anywhere near their students.
“I taught there for four years. I helped to found the school, and served as a guidance counselor while I taught math.”
“That is impressive.”
“I grew up with a slayer, Mr. Jean-Claude-“
“Please, just Jean-Claude.”
She nodded, “Then feel free to call me Dawn. I am more than used to dealing with those much stronger than me, and do not feel that that will be an issue for me.”
“Very well. I have only one more question.”
“Why would you want this job? It is clear from your reticence for this meeting, and from what Dave has told me, that you don’t particularly like vampires. You are not exceedingly magically gifted, and you see like a perfectly how do you say… average girl. Why are you not on Wall Street in New York?”
“That’s a good question. As I’ve hinted, I did not grow up in the most normal of circumstances. Besides my sister the slayer, I had witches, were-wolves, vengeance demons, and vampires for role models. I wanted out as soon as possible. I guess all teenagers rebel from their norms, my norms were just a lot different. I ran away when I finished my bachelors degree, and lived as far away from the monsters as I could. It didn’t work. I’m more comfortable working with the terminally dead and the terminally furry than I am with slimy businessmen.”
Jean Claude smiled. The smile held the promise of many years of happily doing business together, of a prosperous venture for all involved.
Dawn shuddered. No one should make you feel that much with just a smile.
End part 1