AN: I’m going to do all the depressing ‘flashbacks’ and background information in separate chapters.
Disclaimer- I own nothing you might possibly recognise.
It was Friday, and one Buffy Anne Summers couldn’t wait to get out of class. She hated French more than she hated trying to get demon goo out of her clothes, which as Dawn could testify, was a lot.
“Miss Summers, could you please tell us what your plans are?” The teacher asked.
Buffy squirmed. This would be why she hated French. Willow looked at her sympathetically, but knew she couldn’t help her friend.
The sound of the school tannoy system saved the day. “Could Alexander Harris, Willow Rosenberg, Buffy Summers and Dawn Summers please report to the principal’s office?”
“Hey Buffster.” Xander greeted as she walked in. “Wills.”
“Xander, Dawn.” Buffy smiled back. “Any idea what we’re in for?”
Dawn rolled her eyes. “Our delinquent tendencies?”
Willow glared at them. “You guys, this is serious! We could be in big trouble here, and it’s not a laughing matter.”
“Sorry Willow.” The other three chorused. It was best not to annoy a girl who could throw fireballs. Small fireballs admittedly, but painful and dangerous all the same.
The door opened, and a policeman ushered them in. He stared at the four children, knowing that he was about to destroy their world. “I’m afraid there was an accident at Town Hall. There were no survivors. I’m sorry.”
Buffy blinked, her mind rejecting the possibility of anything happening to her mother while she was at school. “For what?”
The policeman sighed. “Among the dead that we’ve been able to identify so far are Joyce Summers, Rory, Tony and Jessica Harris, Ira and Sheila Rosenberg. I’m sorry.”
A wail tore itself from Dawn’s throat, as Buffy began to deny her mother ever going near town hall. Choked sobs were heard from Willow’s part of the room, and Xander’s face was blank.
Xander stood up. “You’re lying. Joyce can’t be dead.” He swallowed. “How did my family die?”
The man shifted. “A gang on PCP attacked the hall. In the confusion, the curtains caught fire.”
Buffy’s denials ended as soon as she heard the word ‘PCP’, and she began to cry uncontrollably.