Disclaimer: not for profit
Author's Note: This is what happens when you have to wait for a week for the next update of your favourite story. Inspired by other real family theme stories.
Willow was getting sick with all this racist crap every passing moment. This was supposed to be a simple recon mission: teleport in, gather information, teleport out; favour for a friend actually. Okay favour for a very good friend, favour for Buffy. She had even volunteered, which now was making it only worse, since she had no one to blame for all this mess except herself. Initially she expected to be done with it in a few hours. However what she didn’t expect was to stumble on the whole undercover world of wand-wavers. Her initial awe and natural curiosity wore off pretty fast after she had to dodge several hexes or so. One crazy bitch even managed to plant one precisely on target, which Willow suspected was some sort of paralyzing spell. And if not for the charm she was wearing on her neck Willow was pretty sure she would feel a lot more than just a stinging sensation in her rear. But when she thought it couldn’t get any worse, it sure did. Okay maybe trying to eavesdrop on a secret Death Eaters meeting wasn’t such a brilliant idea to begin with, she reasoned now, browsing yet another issue of Daily Prophet, and she was damn lucky to break out with her skin intact, but Buffy and Faith – pureblood cousins? You can’t be serious... Willow sighed unhappily and opened yet another issue. It all started 3 weeks ago, approximately two months after they closed Sunnydale hellmouth.
“Let. Me. In” – Buffy growled and kicked invisible wall in the doorway, which was blocking entrance to her new residence in Cleveland.
“Let me try again, B” – Faith moved past Buffy, stopped right in front of the entrance, took a deep breath and stated as clearly as she could: “Faith Lehane”. Several moments later she attempted a careful step through the doorway only to find that invisible wall was still there. She quickly turned on her heel and looking past Buffy’s shoulder complained to Willow: “This is getting ridiculous, Red”.
“Uhm, maybe you should try to include your middle name?” – Willow carefully suggested, but Faith only rolled her eyes.
“I don’t have a middle name” – Faith countered – “Anyhow Buffy Elizabeth Summers here, already tried that and failed. Admit it, Red, you screwed up”.
“But why do Xander and I get in without problems?” - Willow defended – “Giles too”. Silence, though Willow could swear she heard Buffy murmur - “You are asking us?”
“Okay” – Xander tried to reason – “Maybe your protective spell doesn’t recognize Slayers or something?” – he asked Willow, but she only sighed.
“No, it doesn’t make sense. Kennedy hadn’t experienced any problems this morning” – she turned to Giles with hope – “Any ideas?”
“What exactly says spell description?” – He asked her after several moments of contemplation.
“Well it doesn’t really include troubleshooting section” – she replied with sheepish grin.
“Willow...” – Buffy groaned with desperation.
“Sorry” – Willow quickly composed herself and summoned the scroll to her hand in the next moment – “Look for yourself” – she said to Giles and passed the scroll to him.
Giles studied the scroll for several long minutes and then silently passed it back to Willow without saying a word.
“Well?” – Buffy asked him with expectation.
“I... have some speculations” – He answered her, removing his glasses and turning to Willow – “But we will need to perform a ritual to verify them”.
Next week both Slayers found out their true names.
“Hydra Malfoy? – Buffy repeated incredulously for the third time. – “What kind of parents would name a child Hydra?
“Uh, look at it from positive side, Buffy” – Willow tried to support her friend. - “At least you are still dealing with only two syllables. How about Capella Lestrange?”.
At the sound of her true name dark Slayer shot Wiccan a quick glance, then features of her face adopted a thoughtful expression once again.
“Now this is really going to take some time getting used to” – Faith said to no one in particular.
She seemed to be more willing than Buffy to accept this revelation and more importantly its implications. While Buffy was feeling sad and lost at the idea and possibility of being adopted, Faith was more than glad not to be related to that junkie of a mother, who raised her. It didn’t take her long to persuade Buffy to persuade Giles to come up with a way to unravel their heritage. So two weeks later after all obvious solutions failed, ingenious watcher found out an indirect one. He dug up an old clairvoyance spell which pinpointed person’s place of birth with an exceptional accuracy, but gave very little information about it. It could still serve as an anchor for a teleportation spell though. Buffy didn’t have to ask, and Faith would have to wait her turn. And this is how next evening Willow found herself in one of the private bedrooms at Malfoy Manor.
She was a little bit surprised to find herself in a house, instead of a hospital. And the next moment she was completely taken aback when she saw a photograph on a table. It wasn’t a strikingly beautiful young blond woman or an equally handsome young man next to her that shocked her. It was the fact that they were not static. The woman was holding young man’s arm slightly leaning on him and a playful smile appeared on her face, every time before she rose on her toes and planted a quick kiss on his left cheek, which in turn every time didn’t fail to replace his overly serious expression with an embarrassed look.
It amazed her so much that she retained the picture during her short stay at Malfoy Manor and kept it with her even when hexes started flying her way. Before leaving the room to explore, she also spotted the latest issue of Daily Prophet on the chair next to the table, with similar dynamic photos in it. After quickly browsing it for the first time her inquiring eyes found what she was looking for - the address, where it was published. Willow hated feeling clueless and was hoping that it at least would give her an idea where the hell she was. It was London. She gave a brief snort at this particular piece of information, which would prove to be quite valuable later. She just didn’t know at the moment that she wasn’t going to get any answers here.
Well, she had all the answers now. Except for the most important ones. And she sure as hell didn’t like them. Studying Daily Prophet issues of the last two years, looking for relevant information was like solving a puzzle with some sort of horrifying image in it, without seeing it in advance, but having this terrible suspicion that it can only get uglier. So during the last twelve hours with a sickening fascination and a fierce determination bordering on masochism Willow learned everything she could possibly learn from newspaper about purebloods, mudbloods, their private war and all major players. And more importantly about He-who-must-not-be-named, Azkaban, Death Eaters, Blacks, Lestranges, Malfoys and how Buffy and Faith could possibly fit into all of this. It all made sick sense to her now. For example Buffy’s true name - Hydra, after constellation just like her brother’s and aunt’s . Or Faith’s – Capella, after star just like her crazy mother’s or her mass–murdering uncle’s. Speaking of Faith, Willow could almost pity her, if she didn’t secretly gloat a little, of which she wasn’t too proud. ‘But, God, having this crazy bitch for a mother’ she shook her head looking at the picture of enraged Bellatrix Lestrange in her Azkaban garb and felt bad for gloating earlier. It wasn’t Faith, who gave her this pain in the ass last night at Malfoy Manor and she shouldn’t blame her for what her mother did. With that in mind Willow didn’t include this particular article to the ones she was bringing home. It was time for breaking news.