AN: Picks up where 'Scars - Decisions' left off. We'll find out more able the tie they share as the chps go on. Also I'll be writing about Hermione and the flashbacks with Draco in a sister story, I don't want his one getting as messy as the last one did.
Disclaimer: I won nothing... not true I have a car. BUT I do not own Harry Potter or BtVS, they belong to JK Rowling and Joss Whedon respectively. (But hey Christmas is coming... you never know!!)
Dawns mind raced as she hurried down the dark street. Had they realised yet? Would they be angry? Worried? Upset?
More importantly, would they be trying to find her?
Harry had said they shouldn’t be able to find her once she was in the Wizarding World.
But they might and she couldn’t let that happen. They couldn’t get in the way, it was too important and they might try to stop her or worse… help her.
She was marked now, Harry said, they were tied and if anyone realised, anyone in the Wizarding World, realised that the prophesy was still intact, if slightly changed, they may be able to track her. Voldemort would be out to kill her, to stop her from getting to London where she could contact the Order and find a way to stop him.
So she hurried down the street, following the tug of the pendant she’d fashioned and Harry had shown her how to enchant to lead her to the nearest entrance to the Wizarding World.
She just had to get there before Willow could do a locator spell.
Dawn had been amazed that Sunnydale had a Wizarding World at all. Surely, she thought, Buffy had known about this. Harry had assured her that unless she was a witch, a certain type of witch he stressed, she wouldn’t have known.
“The Wizarding World have been keeping themselves secret for hundreds of years. They’ve had lots of practice.” He told her with a smile.
She nodded, too busy looking around to really listen. The pendant had guided her to the Central Bus Station - where else? she thought – and the pendant had started glowing faintly. She put her back to the wall and felt along it with her hand.
Concrete, concrete, con-
“That feels different.” She said knocking on the wall. “What now?”
Harry shrugged looking bewildered.
“I don’t know. Back at Kings Cross you just have to walk through the barrier. I didn’t think there would be a trick to it.”
Dawn thought about that for a minute.
“Muggles don’t go through it do they?” Harry shook his head. “Right.” She took a deep breath. “Give me your hand.”
Harry stared at her like she had a second head. She held out her hand impatiently. Then shook it when all he did was stare.
“You know I’m a ghost right?” She just stared. “Fine.”
He held out his hand and slid into the space next to hers.
“Cold.” She shivered. He nodded again, then pressed his hand against hers.
Against all probability his hand did not go through. He could feel the warmth of her skin and feel the pulse of her blood rushing through her veins, slightly faster than normal. He took a shuddering breath and smiled back as she gave him an encouraging grin.
She ran her hand along the back wall again and shrieked when her hand slid through the wall this time. Grasping his hand tightly (how is that even possible? she wondered) before taking the few steps that put her through the wall and out the other side where the dingy bus station changed into… a dingy floo station.
“The difference is remarkable,” she said sarcastically. Harry ignored her instead looking down to their joined hands.
“How did you know that would work?” He asked. She shrugged.
“Stood to reason,” was all she said and he let it go at that.
There were of course differences. Instead of the jeans and t-shirts favoured by the youth of America, everybody was dressed in a variant of the bathrobe theme.
These subtle differences and the floos themselves made Dawn really nervous. The glowing green fires startled her every time someone appeared or disappeared within them and when Harry reminded her that that was how she would be travelling she went white.
“Don’t worry. It’s a little disorientating but otherwise you’ll be fine,” he told her. “You just have to be sure you say the name of your destination clearly.”
“Or what?” she whispered back. Since she was the only one who could see Harry she was conscious that she must look mad talking to herself like this.
“You go a grate too far, maybe two.”
“That’s all?” she asked suspiciously. “I don’t, like, get turned inside out or anything?”
He shook his head with a grin. She stood up straight.
“Right, lets get on with it then.”
She approached the nearest notice boards listing the local fireplaces, LA and San Francisco as well as one or two towns in between, but the major international cities.
And then there were the prices. She bit her lip. It wasn’t any kind of money she had heard of.
“You must have to connect through LA or something,” Harry said, not sounding entirely sure himself. Dawn was too worried to notice.
“What the hell is a Ke-nut?” she whispered.
“Knut. Wizarding Money. Don’t worry it says they take American money as well.”
She nodded and paid for a fireplace to LA at the counter. But when it came to her turn she nearly turned right around and walked back out of there. It was only Harry’s calming influence that got her to step into the emerald green fire ( the same colour as his eyes she thought hazily) and to say clearly, “Los Angeles Station”.
A flash of green flame and she was spinning. She caught her breath and closed her eyes, the sight of the passing grates making her feel sick. A few moments of dizziness and she was there.
She stumbled out of the fireplace.
“Ohhh! God!” She protested weakly. “Not doing that again!” She was doubled over trying to wish her stomach back to its proper place. She stood up and got her first proper look of the place. And gasped.
Harry laughed at the look on her face.
“This is what the Wizarding World is like,” he told her, pride evident in his voice. She nodded too distracted to pay much heed.
She had stepped from the fireplace into a huge auditorium sheeted in marble. Huge chandeliers hung from the vaulted ceiling and everywhere people thronged.
There were more people than she had ever seen in the one place. Of every shape, size and origin. She saw a bunch or dark-skinned teens wrapped in a Brazillian flag wearing colourful robes walk past, a group of school kids wearing the bored look of teens everywhere went by. Families walking pulling trollies and adults with bags of their own. American, Chinese, French, languages Dawn hadn’t even heard before.
And above all, nobody sparing a glance for the American girl with eyes as wide as saucers trying to take it all in.
There were shops, all kinds of shops. Selling objects that whizzed and popped and sent off multicoloured sparks. Robes of varying intensities of colours, even casual clothes that would pass on a Muggle street, though with a few raised eyebrows. Some simple souvenir shops, though from her quick glance most were unusual in her opinion.
“They’re moving!” she gasped.
Another shop offered owls to send a message to loved ones back home. The hooting of the owls added to the general confusion that is the trademark of any station anywhere.
She took her time wandering around the station. There was a peculiar freedom in being able to look at all these magical objects without Buffy or Willow looking over her shoulder, or pulling her away. Though she wished she could show Tara around. She would find as much childish glee in looking as Dawn would.
She shook her head, trying to dislodge the thoughts and the gloomy feeling that had descended at their coming.
From now on, she decided, no more Scoobies. No thinking ‘bout them, no referencing them. They don’t exist in this world and I no longer exist in theirs!
The silent declaration hurt, like a stab in the gut, leaving her winded and gasping for air. She heard Harry asking if she was alright and nodded.
“I’ll be fine as soon as we get out of here.”
He nodded, thinking she meant the station and its hurly-burly. She’d feel better when she had left America behind, preferable an entire ocean behind.
When she was more composed they went to the information booth, Dawn thanking God that some thing carry over, where they found that they would have to take a train to New York, before making arrangements to get to London.
“You’ll have to get a port key there, shouldn’t take more than a week or so.”
She got her ticket, an overnight bunk on the direct train, and went to the boarding platform where the train was waiting.
“Last chance to turn back,” Harry warned her. Dawn just smiled and hoisted herself onto the train.
She took a seat in one of the carriages that left her facing forward as the train pulled out of the station.
She didn’t look back. You never look back.