Disclaimer: Nothing belongs to me, all BtVS characters belong to Joss Whedon alone, and Harry Potter characters belong to JK Rowling. I claim no rights to copyrighted materials
Hand in hand the world began, and hand in hand the world shall end. Only two can save us; only two can bring about the saving of the world. Many have tried and failed, believing they were invincible, unstoppable. But, the unstoppable were stopped – their ego killing them. The world now rests upon the one that has risen and the one that has lived. Hopefully they are selfless enough to realise their sacrifice. Their life.
Some things in life surprise you. You can’t imagine what you’re life will be in twenty years or in just half an hour. You can’t see where you’ll be or who you’ll be with. Didn’t believe in other worlds, magic colliding with secret. I mean, I know that I’m made to open worlds, cause chaos; yet, thinking and knowing are completely different things. Who knew that Giles would leave? Who knew that I would die? Who knew that I would gain abilities? Who knew Angel would come back? Who knew Buffy was weaker than me? Who knew Spike moved on, and into the arms of Faith?...
You can never imagine the secrets life holds or the surprises. But maybe, the surprises can be very entertaining…
I’m sorry for leaving you to look after Dawn. But, I don’t regret it. You were relying on me too much; you needed to find your own feet. I know that it was hard for her, adjusting back into life – I can just imagine the fights, the heartbreak, the love that just surrounds both of you. I still don’t condone what Willow, Xander, Tara and Anya did; to play with that dark of magic is very dangerous – they have no idea with what they were dealing with. Make no mistake; I am happy for her return. It was very difficult without her – I know that your slaying took a toll. I’m also very happy for you and Angel, you deserve happiness Buffy – don’t let anyone tell you wrong.
I’m also happy to report that I’m doing fine. I was offered a job at this boarding school to teach Defence Against the Dark Arts. Now I know what you’re thinking – what kind of boarding school has that class? – well, it’s a magic school. It’s called Hogwarts; the ‘Headmaster’ is very entertaining – you would love him. I would really love for you all to come for a visit. Please, write back.
I miss you all very much
P.S. How is Dawn adjusting?
And just tie your reply onto the owls’ leg, it won’t hurt you.
Buffy sat re-reading the letter a dozen times; being nipped by the owl brought her back to reality. Giles was teaching; he was teaching! She couldn’t believe that her ‘father’ was teaching at some English magic school, and he wanted them all to visit. They couldn’t just up and leave could they? Dawn was just starting to heal, slowly, she was becoming her old self. She cut her hair to her shoulders and seemed to have it permanently wavy; but, she had a smile on her face most of the time. She wasn’t scared to be touched anymore, and she was letting people back in. The light in her eyes had dimmed, but, being in hell would do that to any person wouldn’t it? She tried to forget her first ever question since coming back – “Is this hell?”
“Hey, what’s that?” a voice asked, sliding arms around the blonde’s thin waist.
“A letter from Giles. He wanted to know if we could go visit,” she stated quietly, turning to face her counter-part.
“Do you want to go?”
“Yes. No. Yes…but with Dawn and everything? I don’t know. She’s just starting to become herself. I don’t know if I want to take her to some magic school – especially not with the new discoveries she’s making,” she whispered, leaning her head into the man’s chest.
“It’ll be okay, she’s strong – just like her sister,” he smiled, brushing his fingers through her hair.
“I hope so Angel, I hope so,” she muttered, closing her eyes tightly – wishing away her problems. It had been 2 months since Angel had been back and Dawn was revived. Things were still far from normal, but, it was slowly starting to get into a flow.
He couldn’t help but smile as he walked up to his bed. He had just finished another session with Professor Giles and his tales of the ‘Sunnydale Times.’ He wasn’t the only one who would go either – there was Ginny, Ron, Hermione, Fred, George, Alicia, Angelina, Colin, Neville, Dennis and even Malfoy, for some odd reason. Giles had just finished off where Glory had come into the picture – trailing after ‘her key.’ He wasn’t the only one who noticed the tears in the Professor’s eyes.
He couldn’t help but be entranced by the ‘Slayer.’ She had destiny – she was expected to do great things – just like him. People formed opinions of her before even laying eyes on her, just because of her name, her title. He could definitely identify with that – he was the ‘boy who lived’ after all. Danger also seemed to follow her around – shadow her. Hopefully, she would visit.
Giles tiredly rubbed the bridge of his nose. He had just gotten up to the story of his life in Sunnydale where he never wanted to remember. This was where all the heartache started. From Tara through to Dawn. He could still remember the sound her body made as it hit the pavement, still remember the heartbreaking sob Buffy let out, still remember the defeated look on Spike’s face – the heartbreaking sorrow on everyone’s face.
He turned in his desk chair to face the letter that arrived in the morning; gliding his hands over the untidy scrawl.
I saw where you were coming from in leaving, you were helping me grow – become the woman that mum…mum would be proud of. So, I thankyou for that. Dawn is adjusting…slowly. She still flinches now and again, and I can see the fear and confusion in her eyes – but this can’t be worse than hell can it? Living can’t be worse than death? She puts on a brave face, and she’s more beautiful than ever at the moment. Her eyes give her away though; the sparkle isn’t there anymore. I think she’ll be fine, but she misses you. She needs mentoring at the moment – she’s gaining abilities that none of us have any idea about. She’s stronger than me Giles, stronger than a slayer.
Anyway, back to your question. We would love to visit – Willow can’t wait to see a real magic school. I don’t think Tara will come though, her and Willow broke up – Willow scared her. She’s falling Giles and I’m not sure if I can stop her. Guess what?? Spike and Faith are a couple – don’t ask how that ever happened. They’re living with me, Angel and Dawn – it’s actually working out pretty well.
P.S. Just send where and when…
“I would like to announce that we will be having very special guests at Hogwarts during Christmas. They will be guests of Professor Giles’ and I hope you will give them the same respect you show your teachers,” Dumbledore smiled, announcing the very exciting news. He was well aware of the late-night story-telling that was going on about Giles’ life before he came to Hogwarts, and he was well aware of the anticipation of meeting the ‘Sunnydale Crew’ that all his students held.
Harry grinned in anticipation – she was coming – and another story was to be told tonight.
“Right, now where were we?” he asked, looking around the comfortable room. He wasn’t blind, he knew the looks that were shared between certain students in the room. Malfoy would always steal a glance at Ginny, Ron and Hermione, Fred and Angelina, George and Alisha – teenage hormones at their best.
“G…Glory,” Neville Longbottom stuttered, blushing slightly at the attention in the room turned towards him.
“Thankyou Neville,” Giles smiled, nodding towards the shy boy. He had so much potential, he just had to know that he had it. “Right, so, Glory wasn’t at all……”
“So, Dawn has a destiny?”
“Yes, more important than that of Buffys,” Giles stated, nodding towards the confused boy.
“But, Buffys The Vampire Slayer; she’s the one with a destiny,” Hermione stated frankly, finding it strange that her sister had a more important one.
“I am well aware of that Hermione, but Dawn…Dawn wa…is special. She was fabricated into our minds, placed for protection. She was sent to the slayer to protect; she was moulded into human form, in hopes to be hidden. Dawn ho…holds the weight of the world on her shoulders, more than that of Buffy,” Giles announced, glancing at Harry Potter. He noticed the thoughtful look on the boy’s face and smiled slightly to himself. No-one thought of Dawn to be an important feature in the ‘Sunnydale Crew’ yet, she was the most important. She was what kept Buffy going, what kept her alive. Harry was starting to notice this, and notice just what was in store for Dawn Summers.
“You can’t just leave us with when she finds out Professor!” Fred whined indignantly, pouting slightly.
“Yeah! There’s got to more to it!” George pronounced, crossing his arms.
“It is time for bed boys, off you all go,” Giles stated, shooing the group off. He noticed that Harry lagged behind, watching his feet tap the floor. “Something you wanted Harry?”
“I…I was just wondering how she felt? To find out you’re not real, and you were just placed there?”
“What anyone would feel I think, devastated. She felt unloved, unneeded, just…just not there,” he whispered, looking into the boys eyes. He saw something familiar in there, something that he had only seen in Dawns eyes – loneliness.
“Oh,” he said dumbly, shocked at the emotion in his Professor’s eyes. They held so much pain and love, that he was nearly bold over by it. “Goodnight Professor,” he nodded, walking away slowly.
“Goodnight Harry,” he said, smiling to the boy slightly. He could already see that the boy was falling hard.
“And she jumped,” he stated, looking towards every tear-stained face. “She sacrificed herself for the world, and her family,” he whispered, tears falling down his own face. He never wanted to relive this pain, relive the horror. “I can…I can still hear the way her body landed, the screams of terror from Willow, Tara, Anya and Buffy, the broken cry that Spike emitted, and Xander’s cry of pain,” Giles cried, trying to wipe away the tears that were falling.
“Oh my god,” Hermione gasped, tears clouding her vision. Her shoulder’s raked with the sobs she let out.
“She died?” Neville asked quietly, wiping the tears from his eyes – she was his hero.
“She…she, what?” Draco stated, slipping an arm tightly around Ginny’s waist. The death of Dawn Summers scared the hell out of him, she was only as old as them.
“She…she c…can’t die,” Harry stuttered, looking at all the recipients in the room. Hermione held tightly in Ron’s embrace, Ginny pulled tightly to Malfoy’s side, Fred, George, Alicia, Angelina, Colin, Dennis and Neville all had tears in their eyes.
“She did,” Giles confirmed, looking carefully at each face in the room. “I think it’s time for bed – my friends will be here in two days,” he announced, trying to lighten up the air inside his room. He watched as they all sullenly walked out of the room, seeming to be in a daze – especially Harry Potter.
“So B, are we there yet?”
“No, and can you stop asking every freaking five minutes!”
“Sorry, just wondering. How’s Giles been anyway?”
“Pretty good, worried about things, but good I think. At least I hope,” she muttered, her brows furrowing in thought. “Do you feel something familiar Faith?”
“Yeah kinda, something dark,” she answered, her eyes darkening in thought.
“I wonder what-”
“There you two are,” Xander interrupted, followed closely by Anya and Willow. “We were looking everywhere on this train!”
“Yeah, I tried to ask Xander for a break. Maybe have alittle fun, play some games; but he just glared,” Anya sulked, slumping down beside Faith.
“Where’s the other three?”
“In some other compartment I’d guess,” Willow stated, relaxing next to Buffy. “Don’t worry, they’ll be fine.”
“I just worry Will,” Buffy sighed, leaning her head on her friends shoulder. They were away from the Hellmouth; leaving it unprotected and defenceless. One of them should have stayed, protected their home.
“I know you do B, but she’s with two of the most ferocious vampires in history,” Faith whispered, understanding coming into her eyes. She cared for Dawn like a sister would, and to know that she was hurting, hurt her.
“I know,” Buffy muttered, closing her eyes slightly. Her dreams were fitless and relentless. All she could see was Dawn’s dive.
“How ya doing Dawn?” Angel asked, stepping into the compartment that held her and Spike.
“Good, nervous, scared,” she stated, her eyes never leaving the motion outside.
“It’ll be okay nibblet, you’ve got the big bad to protect you,” Spike smirked, patting the girl’s knee lightly.
Didn’t help before…she thought darkly, glaring towards the outside. “Yeah I know,” she smiled lightly, glancing in the vampire’s direction quickly.
“And me!” Angel shouted indignantly, not wanting to be left out.
“And you Angel,” Dawn smiled, a real smile for once.
The group walked up to the castle together. Dawn walking at the back with Spike; the heels of her boots clicking against the cobblestone floor. She couldn’t help but feel dangerous and damaged as she walked into the school – preparing herself for the worst. It will only be the second time she’d seen Giles since she had gotten back, and she was nervous. She didn’t understand why he left, why he decided to just let them all be. No-one knew of where she was, she knew that they would all blame themselves for it – they already thought that they had done her a favour, rescued her from an eternity of pain.
Manoeuvring through the castle, Spike kept sending worried glances towards Dawn all the time. He knew that she was healing, that she was starting to remember how to live. But, the spark in her eyes wasn’t there anymore, everyone could see it; he just had no idea how to get it back.
“I think this is it,” Willow stated, looking towards the closed doors – she could sense a lot of magic in the room that was hidden.
“Well, let’s go see the G-man!” Xander hooted, wrapping an arm around Anya’s shoulders and opening the big woodened doors. They were met with silence, as they slowly walked through the doorway.
“Xander?” Giles asked, disrupting the silence that had fallen over the hall. They weren’t meant to be coming until tomorrow night – the pain of Dawn’s death was just recent in the student’s mind. They weren’t used to Sunnydale life – where if you’re dead, you don’t stay dead.
“Hey there G-man!” he smiled, waving towards the old man. He nervously glanced around the student filled hall – he noticed that the most stares were coming from the table with a lot of red.
“Well, you aren’t supposed to be here till tomorrow,” Giles stated, slowly standing and walking around the teacher’s table.
“Got an earlier bus,” Buffy smiled, embracing the older man tightly. She had missed him dearly.
Harry watched as Professor Giles embraced the blonde. She walked like an animal, sleek and graceful – he knew that this must be The Slayer – Buffy Summers. He guessed that the red-head was Willow, the powerful wandless witch, so that must of meant that the one who called him ‘G-man,’ was Xander. He could see the love that surrounded the group, and he was wondering who the other five were. He watched as he welcomed the brunette man that had his arm wrapped around Buffy as ‘Angel,’ – gasps escaped some mouths. He hugged the blonde that was sticking close to Xander, calling her ‘Anya.’ Harry noticed Giles’ glare as he shook the peroxide-coloured haired mans’ hand, calling him ‘Spike.’ He then hugged one of the remaining brunettes, smiling and saying ‘Faith.’ Harry watched as he stopped just infront of a very beautiful brunette. Her eyes were a brilliant green, and her face was adorned perfectly with make-up and wavy hair framed her face. He couldn’t hear what was whispered between the two, but he saw the tears that were spilled between both people. He couldn’t help but be struck by her beauty, he needed to know who she was.
“Well, as you can see; our guests have arrived. Please, would you all like to introduce yourselves?” Dumbledore stood and asked, conjuring up extra seats for them.
“Hi, I’m Buffy Summers,” she smiled, blushing at the gasps that filled the room. She could deftly hear the whispers of ‘slayer’ and ‘oh my gods,’ that filled the room.
“Angel,” the man holding Buffy nodded, smirking at the whistle’s he received. He could feel Buffy’s huff of annoyance, and just hugged her tighter.
“Um, I’m Willow Rosenburg,” the red-headed announced, waving shyly towards the crowd of students.
“Xander Harris,” the man that was holding the other blonde stated, sending a confused look towards Giles when he heard ‘Hyena’s Rule’ shouted out.
“Anya Jenkins,” the blonde on Xander’s arm said, smiling happily at the applause heard.
“Faith,” the brunette closest to Buffy nodded, smiling secretly at the whispered ‘rogue slayer.’ She turned to Giles and raised an eyebrow in question.
“Spike,” the peroxide blonde snarled, slipping an arm around Faith.
They all turned their gazes towards the brunette that hid behind Spike’s arm; holding tightly to his hand. She step-forward slightly, and looked nervously towards Buffy. “I’m D…Dawn Summers, Buffy’s s...sister,” she stuttered, looking towards the ground when the whole hall went quiet.
No-one uttered a word. For once, the Great Hall was deadly silent. It was Ron who broke the silence. “You’re dead,” he stated bluntly, shivering slightly at the glare sent to him by all the guests.
“Yeah, well, I’m back,” she muttered darkly, stalking out of the hall. Spike was about to go after her before Giles stopped him.
“He’ll do it,” Giles whispered, pointing towards the dark-haired boy that had already gotten up and was running after her.
“Who the bloody hell is he?”
“Harry Potter,” Giles muttered, smiling slightly at Buffy. He knew that she heard the resent in Dawn’s voice – the guilt.
“Hey! Hey, wait!” a voice called after her – something in the voice just made her stop. She couldn’t understand why she did; it was if she had heard that voice and recognized it – recognising that she was meant to listen to it, it was meant to calm her.
“Yes?” she asked, turning around to face the source of the voice. Her eyes widened in surprise. The voice belonged to a very handsome young man. He stopped just before her, gasping in breaths of air – she never knew she ran that fast.
“I…uh…I…umm, well, are you okay?”
“I’m fine, just adjusting,” she smiled, laughing slightly at his stuttering. She knew that she should be weary, cautious of the boy – but he just felt so familiar, so…safe.
“Well, I suppose it would be hard…adjusting from what you’ve been through,” he stated nervously, leaning from one foot to the other. He couldn’t understand why he was so nervous. He felt like he knew her. Knew her deepest secrets – but, she died. How could someone come back to life?
“Just alittle,” she said, flashing him a real smile. She tried to ease his nervousness alittle, “What’s your name?”
“Harry, Harry Potter,” he nodded, smiling at her attempt. She seemed so normal, so innocent – no one would believe that this girl could essentially, destroy the world.
“Nice to meet you,” she smiled, sliding down the castle wall and holding her head in her hands.
“You don’t want to be here do you?” he asked, observant of her stress. He watched as she outstretched her hands and just looked at them curiously.
“Do you know the story of how I came back?”
“No,” he whispered, sliding down next to her, just so he could hear. She looked so hurt and world-worn that he just wanted to protect her from everything.
“I had to crawl my way out. Claw at the wooden coffin until it gave way, and then crawl through the dirt that covered me. No one was there to greet me, it was just dark...blank. I could hear screams of pain and the growling of victory from monsters that shouldn’t be alive. But the worst part? It was that I had to claw, and crawl through the ground,” she whispered, just staring at her hands amazedly. Her eyes were drowning in tears but she wouldn’t let them fall – she hadn’t cried at all since coming back.
If Harry looked closely, he could still see the scars on her hands from that night. He couldn’t imagine what that would have been like – he didn’t think he wanted to know either. This girl, no older than him, had been through hell and back, literally if what Giles said was true, and she was still standing before him – as if she had been unaffected by it all. “Where were the others?” he found himself asking, surprising himself at the abrupt noise. Disturbing the silent atmosphere after she told him of her rising.
“I don’t know,” she shrugged, tucking her hands safely behind her back. “Buffy and Giles never knew, neither did Spike – the others were apart of it. She found me, did you know? She went looking for me after she passed my gravesite, noticing that something had crawled out. I could hear her, you know? She was just this constant voice which left me undecided. I was back where it all began, the tower. I stood on the balcony, ready to jump. I needed to get back to where I was, I didn’t…I don’t belong here anymore,” she muttered, letting a deep breath out. She couldn’t believe that she was telling this total stranger all of her problems. But she supposed that it was easier to tell a stranger your story, rather than someone you knew. The stranger couldn’t judge you, just understand you.
“You belong here Dawn,” Harry quickly inserted, compassion filling his face. He could understand how she was feeling. He felt as if he didn’t belong there sometimes. He was supposed to be this saviour, but, he was just a boy trying to live. He didn’t want the weight of the world on his shoulders – he just wanted to live. He was only 16 years old; he didn’t want to be a hero. “Do you know that I’m supposed to save the world? I’m supposed to be the wizarding world’s champion – but, I’m only 16. I don’t want that responsibility.”
“No one wants that responsibility Harry, but, you’ve been given it. You’ve been given the chance to become a saviour. And that Harry, that’s one of the best gifts the Powers That Be can give you,” she smiled sadly at him; she saw a glint of understanding enter his eyes. It was then that she knew that he didn’t think of the responsibility as a gift – it was more of a curse. Much of what hers, Buffy’s and Faith’s ‘gifts’ are.
“I guess,” he said, his eyes darting around the deserted hallway. He wondered why people hadn’t started to usher through the hallways – maybe dinner hadn’t finished? “You really did die didn’t you?”
“Yeah, I really did,” she whispered, after awhile of silence. She turned to really face the boy that already knew more about her than her family did, or hopefully, ever will. She noticed the caring in his unnatural green eyes, the way his hair seemed to be naturally ruffled, the way his body was filled and looked muscular, and last but not least, the lightening bolt scar that was on his forehead. She knew that that was no ordinary scar, it had a history – and since she had gotten back, she thought she might have to stick around. If only to hear that story. “So, you ready to go back?”
“Sure,” he shrugged, offering her his hand. He smiled as she slipped her hand into his, and they walked towards the ‘Great Hall’ together – hand in hand.
“So, it has begun,” a man stated, looking down on the two teens.
“Yes, hand in hand the world began – and hand in hand it shall end,” a female nodded, turning her unemotional eyes onto her partner.
“Or, hand in hand it shall be saved,” he argued, eyes glinting at emotion.
“Either,” she shrugged nonchantly, walking away from the pool.
“I hope you succeed young ones, where others have failed,” he whispered, gliding his hand over the still water