Whomping Willow by Jewel
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters or locations. This story is written for fun and no profit is being made.
Reviews and constructive criticism are welcome. Flames are not.
Fuelled by grief and rage, Willow rampaged across Sunnydale, and each act of revenge, of destruction stripped away more of her once bright spirit. Power boiled through her, stolen Dark and Light magics warring beneath her skin.
By the time Xander reached her on the Bluffs, only a flickering remnant of the woman remained. Consumed by power, the Dark clearly dominant, it was a miracle that Xander was able to reach that tiny spark and prevent the imminent catastrophe.
By reaching that spark, he offered an opportunity to the Light which had been massively overpowered by the Dark.
The Light enveloped the spark, protecting the remnant of love, leaving the rest of the Vessel to the corruption of the Dark.
Willow's last conscious act in life was to remove herself from the world that she had so nearly destroyed to a place both far away and very well warded where hopefully she could do no more harm. Then the magics flowed over her once again, and the spark vanished, consumed by the Light.
The Vessel was standing in a field beside a lake. The whole place hummed with power, centred on the massive building just a short distance away. The magics halted briefly in their battle for control of the Vessel, gazing upon the castle and then both acted.
Even as the Dark began to move the Vessel towards the source of that delicious power, the Light transformed the Vessel into a Shell in accordance with its own nature and in tribute to the spark of love that it had absorbed, removing locomotive ability.
In the field beside the lake there was now a willow tree. Within, rooted in the soil of a new Earth, the Light forced back the Dark, achieving something akin to parity. Trapped, the Dark struggled futilely, succeeding only in warping the exterior of the young tree.* * *
The children were surprised to find a willow tree beside the lake. It was a young tree, but twisted and gnarled in a way that willows usually were not. They were a lot more surprised when one of the boys got too close and the willow struck out at him and narrowly missed.
Within the Shell, the Dark and Light magics 'glared' at one another. The Light would not permit the Shell to cause harm, but the Dark would continue to try. Between the two there was balance, and the reputation of the Whomping Willow was soon firmly established in the lore of the school.