Disclaimer: I (unfortunately) own none of the characters from either Buffy the Vampire Slayer or the Harry Potter series. They belong to the geniuses Joss Whedon and J.K. Rowling. I am not trying to take credit for their works. I am just a poor college student amusing herself by writing some fan fiction!
For the timeline and changes I made to both the Buffy and HP fandoms, see Chapter 1!
WARNING: THIS CHAPTER CONTAINS MAJOR CHARACTER DEATH! You have been warned.
Dear GOD! I am so so so so so sorry that this final chapter took so long to get out. I've been half way done with it for months now, but I just couldn't figure out the direction I wanted to go. Whether to make the ending sad or happy. Whether to bring people back to life or keep them dead. God, I've wracked my brain for months trying to find an ending I'm happy with. And I think I've found it!
Thank you so much to mpop and Fritolays for your reviews. I really appreciate it. To everyone else, I am so thankful that you have been so supportive during this journey of writing my first fanfic. I know that it was a very stretched-out journey, and I am extremely appreciative that you have stuck with me all this time.
Anyways, enough of that... Onto the last chapter!
The rest of the battle passed in a blur of flashes of lights and fists. Buffy had resolved not to leave Harry's side, but this plan was immediately thwarted when she was tackled to the marble floor. There was a moment of shock as her brain tried to process what had just happened. One moment she was holding her dead boyfriend to her, and the next moment, she was laying flat on her back with a large, snarling vampire straddling her hips. Then, the moment of shock was gone, replaced by a wave of anger.
Anger at Voldemort, at the wizards and vampires and demons that were attacking the school, at the people in the castle who hadn't come to get her the second Voldemort had walked through the front doors, but mostly at herself. She was mad at herself. She hadn't been able to save him. After everything. After saving him from Bellatrix, after saving him from Faith, after all those months of refusing to leave his side. After all of that, she had left him alone, out of sight, directly in harm's way. Defenseless. She hadn't left him with Dumbledore, and she hadn't been the one to guard him. She had fucked up, and she had paid for it with his life.
Suddenly her mind was completely clear, and she lashed out, knocking the vamp off of her and staking it effortlessly. She felt all of the feeling flow out of her body, and she fought on autopilot: a kick here, a punch there, a tackle to the stomach of the Death Eater that had Ron pinned against the wall. Her wand still lay several feet away on the floor, and she made no move to retrieve it. She doubted she'd be able to remember anything she had learned, and knew that she could destroy anything in her path with her bare hands. It was easy, familiar. It was all that she could manage at the moment. She was ruthless: anyone who crossed her ended up on the floor, either dead or groaning in pain, watching her as she moved onto her next target. Vampires, demons, humans... She showed no signs of remorse as the bodies fell at her feet.
And then it was over. Just like that.
People began to trickle back into the castle, their enemies having fled as soon as they heard the news that Voldemort had been defeated. She made no move to chase them. They'd be back. And when they were, they were as good as dust. As soon as the last vampire had burst into dust before her eyes, a powerful wave of emotion slammed into her as Harry's limp body once again attracted her attention. Without a word, she walked over to him, staring down at him in silence. Dumbledore came up behind her and raised his wand, levitating Harry's body a few feet in the air and toward the Hospital Wing, as a large group had gathered, staring in horror and whispering amongst themselves. Buffy refused to leave his side and walked next to him, making her way to the infirmary without a word. Gone was the warrior she had been a second ago, leaving a broken and battered girl in its wake. She felt empty. A shell.
Thankfully, her friends let her be and didn't try to talk to her, though Willow, who was looking quite worse for the wear with blood dripping from a few cuts on her face and chest, slid through the crowd and took her best friend's hand in hers. Xander and Giles were nowhere to be found, but she barely acknowledged this fact, instead keeping her eyes trained on the shiny marble beneath her feet, trying to keep the tears at bay. They would be okay. They had to. They were strong and prepared. And nothing would happen to them. A silent procession followed, Dumbledore in the lead with his wand raised to keep the body airborne.
Thirty minutes later, Buffy sat awake in Sirius' old private room, dressed in a fresh set of clothes. She had reluctantly allowed Madame Pomfrey to clean and mend her wounds; the large gash in her stomach from Faith's knife was no more than a thin white scar, though it was still slightly pink around the edges, and the various cuts, scrapes, and broken bones showed no evidence that they had ever existed. She had refused to let Harry out of her sight, and it had taken both Angel and Spike, Angel sporting a bloody nose, a gash on his forehead, and a few broken ribs, and Spike clutching a broken arm to his chest and holding a rag to the back of his head to stem the bleeding from a particularly nasty cut, to wrestle her away from him long enough for the mediwitch to shove a few potions down her throat.
After Madame Pomfrey cleaned her up, Buffy easily lifted Harry's body into her arms and took it to the empty room at the back of the infirmary at Dumbledore's orders to remove him from sight before the rest of the crowd entered the large room. There was no reason to leave him out in the open like that, further alarming them, he had said. Buffy sighed: the damage had already been done, but the Headmaster had ordered it, so she did it without question. She was no longer the one in charge, and for that, she was grateful. Suddenly, it became more than she could bear, and with one last glance at Harry's peaceful features, she exited the small room and reemerged into the crowed, extremely loud room. Everyone was in hysterics: they had started bringing the bodies in. the Slayer watched in muted horror as friend after friend appeared through the doors, held up by floating stretchers. But she didn't run or scream or cry. She remained calm and collected. Just as a Slayer should.
Her eyes widened as Charlie Weasley glided into the room, followed closely by his parents and all of his brothers. They were all battered and bloody, and Mrs. Weasley, who had a deep gash on her cheek, was sobbing wildly, clutching her oldest son's hand and refusing to let go. Mr. Weasley, who was holding a cloth to a wound at his hairline, was whispering to her in comforting tones, though he, as well as everybody else in the room, knew that it was no use. Bill, Fred, and George trailed along a short ways behind them all covered in blood, their jaws clenched as they tried to fight off the tears that threatened to spill. Ron was nowhere to be found, and she frowned, but was quickly distracted. Spotting the gruesome bite to Bill's neck, Buffy winced, all thoughts of Ron instantly pushed to the back of her mind. He hadn't died quick and painlessly. He had suffered. And by the look of the pale complexion of his skin and his blood-soaked robes, he had been drained. She hoped that she would have the strength to... end his life, as well as convince his family to let her do so, if his killer had indeed attempted to make the red-haired boy one of his own.
Little Professor Flitwick, Padma Patil, Mundungus Fletcher, Justin Finch-Fletchley, Susan Bones, Hestia Jones, Filch, Professor Sinistra, Madam Hooch, Michael Corner, Dean Thomas, Charity Burbage, dozens of witches and wizards she didn't know... Body after body filtered through the open doors. Each sent a ripple of sorrow through her, but none of them could compare to the pain that flooded her as the doors to the infirmary opened once again.
“Oh god,” came the Slayer's soft whisper or horror, and she raced toward the doors, not even noticing as she knocked several people aside in her haste to get to the limp body that Hagrid had lowered onto the floor. “Oh god, oh god, oh god,” her quiet mantra continued as she dropped to her knees, watching with wide eyes as Willow sunk to the ground next to her and threw herself over their friend's still form. Unable to move, her eyes remained glued to her best friend's sobbing figure as Oz gathered his girlfriend's petite frame in his arms and dragged her away. She put up quite a fight, but a few minutes later, the grief overtook her and she gave in, allowing the werewolf to settle them into a nearby chair. Buffy watched her sob for several long minutes, but eventually, it became too much to bear.
“Who did this?” Buffy ground out between clenched teeth as she stared down at her friend, reaching out to cup his cheek. His features were frozen, eyes wide and mouth open in a silent scream. All of the sadness she had felt vanished immediately, replaced by a powerful wave of anger and the need for revenge. She was going to kill the son of a bitch that had ripped her friend away from her. A second later, the large doors banged open once again, revealing a panting and blood-soaked Giles.
“Buffy!” he called, skidding to a stop in front of her. “I came as soon as I heard-...” She cut him off before he could continue.
“Who did this?” she asked again, standing up and turning away from the body on the ground. She looked Hagrid square in the eyes, making him shift uncomfortably as a result of her intense gaze. “Hagrid?”
“'m not sure...”
“Hagrid, who did this?” Her tone left no room for stalling, and he clenched his teeth, nodding in submission. Her anger flared up once again at the name he uttered.
“Lucius Malfoy.” Without another word, she turned on her heel and marched out of the infirmary door without a backwards glance. Blocking her friends' protests from her mind, she headed straight for the dungeons and stopped in front of Snape's office. The potions master, who was standing guard at the door, raised and eyebrow at her sudden appearance, but stepped away from the locked door as she approached.
“Give me his wand,” she ordered. Her voice was hard and cold, and he winced almost imperceptively at her tone. He knew better than to argue with her. Withdrawing a slim piece of dark wood from his robes, Snape handed her Lucus Malfoy's wand.
“Thank you,” she answered as he pushed open the heavy wooden door for her and once again stepped back to allow her entry. “I'll only be a minute.” Stepping into the room, she closed the door behind her, not bothering to lock it. A blond head looked up at her as the door clicked close, and a wide sneer crossed the man's face.
“Well, well, well. Look who's come to visit.” In the blink of an eye, the Slayer was across the room, ripping away the ropes that were binding Lucius Malfoy to the chair he was restrained to. “Come to let me free?” She shoved his wand into the palm of his hand, her expression remaining hard as his eyes widened in surprise.
“I'm giving you the chance to fight back,” Buffy ground out, immediately once again on the opposite side of the room. “Get up,” she ordered, and the older man scrutinized her for a moment before standing. The two continued to stare at each other for what seemed like hours, neither wanting to make the first move. “You killed him.”
“You're going to have to be more specific,” he taunted, the excited glint in his eye making Buffy want to cross the room and rip his head right off without giving him the chance to defend himself. “I've killed a lot of people.” He ran his fingers over the wood in his hands, waiting for her to elaborate.
“You killed Xander!” she practically yelling, her calm and cool exterior dissolving as another wave of anger crashed into her. Her vision turned red, and her fists clenched at her side as he laughed.
“Ah yes...” His voice came out almost like a hiss, and he smiled. “Your little friend. He never stood a chance against me. He was weak.. Incapable of defending himself. The boy was dead before he even knew what hit him.” He laughed again, and she had had enough. Before he could raise his wand, she had him pinned up against the cold stone wall with her hand around his throat.
“Don't you dare
talk about him like that.” She had forgotten that he still had his wand in his hand.
” Both blonds dropped to the floor as what felt like an an electric current coursed through the Slayer's body, causing her to cry out. A second later, she was back on her feet, charging at the man who had killed one of her best friends. Her movements, fueled out of anger and revenge, acted on instinct rather than logic. She was wild, not in control of her actions, and he used this to his advantage. “Crucio!
” She fought against the pain as he hurled several more curses at him, dodging some and being hit by others.
“Ahhh!” she screamed in pain as a new wound sprouted up on the pale skin of her chest and began to pour blood. Pain clouded her vision, but she pushed through it, smiling triumphantly as she knocked his wand away from him and pinned him to the ground. She began to swing at him wildly, her fist connecting with any part of him she could reach. He was bleeding heavily now, coughing and sputtering for breath around the blood that was filling his mouth and nose. As she wrapped her hands around his neck to end it, the door burst open behind her, and she jerked her head around to see who it was. Draco was standing in the doorway, his face flushed and his breath uneven from running.
“Buffy! No!” He gasped, stumbling into the room. Snape was standing behind him with a sour expression his face. She could tell that he had no qualms about her killing Lucius Malfoy. Now that he was no longer a double agent, he had dropped his front of loyalty and respect for Voldemort and his followers. “Buffy...” he tried again when she made no move to get up off of his father. “I know what he did. I know. But you can't kill him.”
“Why not?” she asked, her voice once again cold an hard as she turned to look down at the man who had killed Xander. “The bastard deserves to die for what he did.”
“It's too easy,” Draco answered, crossing the room in a few strides and lifting her up. She didn't struggle. She simply let him wrap his arms around her. The blood from her hands was smearing across his skin and robes, but he made no move to stop it. He held her gently, like a lover, but strong at the same time. “If you kill him now, he won't suffer. He needs to be punished for what he did.” This clicked in Buffy's memory. He did need to suffer. A lifetime in Azkaban. That's what he deserved.
“Ok,” she agreed quietly, turning toward the door without another look at Lucius. “Ok.” Smiling softly, Draco placed a hand on Buffy's back and pushed her gently toward the door.
” Draco yelled, causing Buffy to spin around just as a jet of bright green light smashed into and invisible barrier directly in front of her face. “Expelliarmus!
” A red jet of light burst from the tip of the boy's wand and slammed into his father, sending him flying backwards and crashing into the hard stone wall, effectively rendering him unconscious. Buffy turned her attention back to Draco, her widened green eyes causing him to smile softly. He didn't need a thank you. “Come on,” he urged quietly, once again pushing her gently in the direction of the door. “Let's go.”
“Take his wand and tie him up,” the Slayer ordered Snape. He mock glowered at her, but quickly moved to follow her orders. Letting Draco take control, she let her mind wander. All of the people they had lost. Children
. All so that she could kill this big bad in half a second? But what if he wasn't dead. What if he had just gone into hiding again. Waiting. Plotting... No. She mentally shook herself. She had killed him; she was sure of it. Dumbledore had made sure of it. And just in case, she had swung a sword down on his neck, wanting to make sure that he would never come back. Wanting to make sure that they would be safe. Happy. Free
But were they? All those people. Would they ever be free from what they had lost? Their brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, friends, lovers... The list went on and on. Would they be free from the guilt? Could she be free... happy... knowing that so many people had lost their lives following her orders? Dozens of people, innocent people that just happened to get caught in the middle of one of the greatest wars in wizardry history? Pavarti wouldn't have a sister. Hogwarts wouldn't have several of it's amazing and life changing staff members. The ministry wouldn't have handfuls of its dedicated and brave members. Same with the Order. Ron wouldn't have a brother... Oh god. Ron and Hermione. She had no idea where they were... if they were safe. If they were even alive. But she didn't know what had happened to them. Maybe they survived. Maybe they had escaped the fight unharmed. Maybe they would be waiting for her when she got back to the hospital wing.
But all of this barely mattered to her. She knew she was being selfish, insensitive even, but she couldn't help it. Two deaths had cut her to the core. She closed her eyes as she thought of Xander, barely feeling her feet pounding against the stone underneath her. Other than Willow, he was her best friend. The first one in Sunnydale who had figured out who she really was, and the last one to ever leave her. He was like a brother to her. The overly protective brother that you sometimes want to scream at and punch in the face for smothering you, but the brother that deep down, you love more than anything. He was the heart. The heart of the little group. The one who was always there, willing to help whenever needed and wanting to protect them at all costs. The one that would give his life for them. He was her
heart. And now, that part of her was gone. What would the Scoobies be without him? Would they even be the Scoobies anymore?
The tears were flowing freely now, tracing a path down her cheeks and falling to the cold stone beneath her. A single sob escaped her throat, shaking her body and causing her stride to falter. Hearing this, Draco stopped, and with one look into her tear-filled eyes, drew her close to his chest. With a soft shushing sound, he cradled her head against him, running his fingers through her blond locks. He leaned his cheek against the top of her head, and she knew that he wanted nothing more in the world than to absorb some of the pain she was feeling so that it would be easier to bare. But it was no use. Her heart pounded in her chest and the tears continued to course down her face and onto Draco's robes as she thought of the one person who had changed her life the most since she had arrived at Hogwarts.
She had only known him for a short time, but she had developed such strong feelings for him. After Angel, she had no idea if she would ever be able to love someone else. But he had helped her to move on. To find herself. So see what her life could be. To be a normal girl for the first time since she had been called. One who thought about boys and make-up instead of weapons and ambush tactics. She had realized that even though part of her heart still belonged, and would always belong, to the ensouled vampire, she had found someone else. Someone that could make her happy. Someone who would cherish her and take care of her. Someone she could live a normal life with. Someone she could grow old with, spend her life with out in the sun. Someone she could love. Someone she could have loved.
She didn't know what life held for her now. She didn't know if she could go back to Sunnydale the same old Buffy. If she, Giles, Willow, and Oz could return, mourn the death of one of their closest friends, and recover from it. If she could ever find love again after having had it ripped her away not once, but twice. If they could return to their lives, writing their journey to the wizarding world off as just another means of defeating a big bad. As an adventure. But one thing was for certain. She knew this, Buffy realized with a sad smile. She could have been happy.
If she had only been given the chance.
I know that ending was extremely sad, but I felt that it was the best way to go. It was the most realistic ending (though Buffy and HP aren't all that realistic to begin with!). I hope you enjoyed it! Thanks again for all of your support, and drop me a review on your way out! ^_^