Prologue // Meet the Slayer
Palma de Animus - Prologue
Disclaimer: BtVS belongs to Joss, HP to JK.
A/N: Here I am, succumbing to another one of my most-read fandoms: HP/Buffy crossovers. I'll try to update this once a week, but anyone who knows the least about my fics know that it'll be amazing if I update even once a month. But constructive reviews do tend to make me itch to write more, so they are very much welcome. :D
Sept. 29, 03: I've revised the prologue, making it longer and a bit more informative.
Black was all he knew. The endless, black oblivion he seemed to be helplessly plummeting through was relentless. His eyes darted about, frantically searching for an escape from the cruel darkness, but there was none. The air was stifingly warm and grew more so the longer he fell, and his nose itched, but there was little he could do about his predicament.
He was paralyzed and motionless; his shaggy hair was the only part of him that moved, and even then, only because he was falling at an increasingly fast pace. He was still in the position that he had finished his last battle in: body arched and wand in hand, so there was naught he could do to scratch his nose, much less save himself.
'Wingardium leviosa!' The simple levitation spell he had acquired in his first year rang through his head, urging him to cast it upon himself, but it was difficult, when he could neither move his lips to speak the incantation or move to point his wand at himself. However, perhaps by his sheer determination and the knowledge that his godson was waiting for him, he could feel his fall slow. Instead, he began to gradually rise upwards, almost to the beat of the chanted charm in his mind.
He finally allowed himself the luxury of relief and hope, the air now blowing against his back instead of his front. And just as he began to breathe again, he realised he was slowing down, if not falling. No, he was falling. Granted, it was at a slower pace than before, but he was falling, nonetheless, in the wrong direction. 'Wingardium leviosa! Wingardium leviosa!' The spell became weaker and weaker the further down he fell, and it seemed now that for every meter he had risen, he was falling two more in chastisement.
'WINGARDIUM LEVIOSA!!' The spell was of no use now, and he was falling just as he was in the beginning, downwards and quickly, but as he fell further down, he began to hear tortured screams, and he continued to recite it in his head, despite its uselessness, to drown out the hoarse voices. They were becoming louder by the moment and reminded him too much of Azkaban, and were possibly even worse. The heat increased uncomfortably, stifling him, straining his strength, and became too much. Before he had a chance to see the flickering flames at the end of his fall, before he succumbed to the darkness, he shouted in his mind, once more, the only spell that could save him...
Buffy whipped her head around at the sound of the spell being spoken. Upon seeing that it was only an elderly woman casting the spell to lift her tartan luggage off a bright purple bus, she immediately adominshed herself for being so paranoid. Giles had warned her, after all, that downtown London would be filled with witches and wizards of the good kind.
She and the Scoobies were here in an attempt to reanimate the Watcher's Council and to train the new Slayers, but being in London was stressful on her. The smoggy summer air of the metropolitan area was bad enough to her Californian disposition, but the underlaying magical current that seemed to be everywhere kept her on a constant edge. True, it could be just the hidden magical community Giles kept reminding her of, but she'd had her share of 'muggles' playing with any sort of magic.
Heh... muggles. It was an adorably cute word, but upon finding out that she, too, was unmagical, despite her Slayer-ness, she instantly realised that she didn't like being called a mug-anything and immediately enlisted Willow to teach her some Wiccan skills. After a day or two of making things blow up inexplicably, though, Giles had finally lost his patience with the constant disruptions and had given her a pointy stick with which she could practice some other strand of magic -- it had a name, Buffy knew, but recognizing names had never been on her priority list. She did know, however, that it was different from Wicca magic and drew upon her magical Slayer core instead of the magic around her, and was very proud of herself for remembering this. So, as Giles decided that magic would aid her in her Slaying, Buffy would spend an hour or two of every night "whipping out her stick" to practice some magic, much to Buffy's chagrin and Willow's amusement. Of course, these trainings would only come after she herself had finished training the new Slayers -- or as she fondly put it, her Mini-me's, and after Willow had finished training the group of neo-generation Watchers. They were opening a fresh page in the Slayers' histories, but it would be a welcome change: the girls could use Watchers that could fight relatively decently on top of researching.
Buffy was drawn from her thoughts when her Slayer senses tingled; it was not from magic this time, as that had started to become a dull nag, but was the familiar twinge she had become accustomed to whenever a vampire was around. Pushing the magical tingle back in her mind as far as possible, she zoned in on the vampire, who had just followed the elderly witch from before through the doors into a pub -- which had just disappeared!
Okay, so the vampire and the lady were in a pub that had just decided to cease existing -- what was a Slayer to do? She scanned the area again, and being late as it were, the street was decorated by only a few stragglers. Looking across the wall of shop-fronts again, she was definite that the entrance of the pub was no longer visible and had instead decided to play hide and seek. So, seek she would. She neared the space where the vampire had once been and tentatively moved her hands forward into the strong aura of magic that stood before her. 'Hmm... feels like jello,' Buffy quipped to herself. She pictured the entrance in her head: "The Leaky Cauldron" was written in a vintage script on a black steel plaque that hung over a quaint wooden door with hinges made of similar metal.
And just as Buffy solidified the picture in her head, so did the actual entrance in front of her. It was just where she had pictured it, appearing out of nowhere. It stood there as if it had been there all along. The blonde haired slayer looked around her, left and right, but the other buildings seemed completely undisturbed. Shaking off the weirdness of a disappearing door, she gathered her wits about her and opened the door to the din of the pub.
At first sight, the pub seemed completely normal, save the odd choice of clothing everyone seemed to have. It was surprisingly large; there were the expected groups of drinking buddies gathered around a radio which boasted a loud 'GOAL!' that was followed by a bunch of loud hoots and hollers, but there, in one corner, were two booths -- one seating the woman, the other seating the vampire. Ignoring the call from a nearby table that seeked her to 'give us a wet one, ducks,' Buffy quickened her steps; the vampire had slid over from his booth to the woman's, and seemed to be laying on the charm. The charm, however, didn't seem to be working very well. The elder woman's lips had pursed in impatience, and she looked like she was about ready to leave.
"Leaving so soon, luv?" The vamp had grabbed a hold of the arm that was gathering her cloak and bags.
"You will let go of my arm, young man," was his companion's only response. She was about to threaten to transfigure him into an unsightly toad when she noticed his face was no longer smooth, but instead, sported a demonic visage.
Before she could yell or whip out her wand, though, his arm was jerked away by a young girl standing behind him. "I don't know what kind of weird fetish you may have for old ladies," Buffy quipped, "but I thought young men would be taught to treat - your - elders - with - RESPECT!" With each word, she had punched him once.
Snarling now, the vampire grabbed Buffy instead, leaving the woman to grab her wand from her robes. He sniffed the air a few times before grinning. "So you're the Slayer, eh? I've never had myself a Slayer before."
Buffy rolled her eyes at the oh-so-original line and snapped his head back with a sharp kick. "Yep, that would be me, Slay-gal extraordinaire," she agreed, driving her point home with a jab to his stomach with her elbow. "So that would make YOU the Slayed." Grabbing the stake she had handily hidden up her sleeve, she staked it through the vampire's heart. "And I've had plenty of those."
As the annoying, ugly thing turned to dust, Buffy whirled around to find that nothing had been disturbed, despite her quick tussel. Drinks were still going around, and everyone was still having a jolly old time. Apparently, magical people were just as blissfully ignorant as muggles when they wanted to be.
"Thank you, Miss... ah..."
"Summers, Buffy Summers," the Slayer grinned at the woman with a strong temptation to add a 'shaken, not stirred' to her introduction. "Just doing my job." Before she could turn to leave, though, there was an arm on her shoulder.
"Would you care to join Minerva and I for a drink, Ms. Summers?" Buffy looked up to see Father Christmas, red robes (albeit covered with yellow crescent moons), white beard and all, and was speechless. "After all, it would be most rude of me to not thank you for saving one of my top professors' life." Before she could reply, he continued. "My name is Albus Dumbledore, and this is Minerva McGonagall. We are professors -- three Butterbeers, please, Tom -- at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. As you can most likely forsee from the name, it is a school for the magically inclined."
"There are schools for magic? Weirdness. Is this an England thing, or would there be some in America, too? 'Cuz I have this witchy friend of mine, Willow, and if she'd gone to a school instead of playing around with magic, it would've saved us a damned amount of trouble." By now, Buffy had joined the two professors in the booth, offhandedly ignoring the pile of dust on the ground.
"Yes, I believe there is a school under the name of the Salem Magic Institute. However, I've heard that there have historically been some complications in locating magical potential on the Hellmouth."
Buffy choked on her beverage. Oh, not that it tasted bad or anything, but -- "Excuse me?"
"You are the Slayer, are you not? I believe that's what the gentleman called you before he... ah... had to leave. I'll cut straight to the point, Ms. Summers. The magical world is facing dark times, and we are in dire need of a person of your calibre.
"Have you ever considered a profession in education, Ms. Summers?"
Much thanks to Pam, pk, kratzee, WhiteWolf, Anon, Athene, HecatonchiresLM, Carmen, and Jeanne for reviewing the original prologue. ^^ I'm glad I made it obvious enough that at least SOME people caught it: Sirius will be involved (whether or not he's coming back alive is another question) and yes, the "elderly woman" is indeed McGonagall. :) But I suppose that's obvious, now that I've modified the prologue.. ^^;
To answer Carmen's question: Palma de Animus is very badly written Latin for 'Saviour of Souls'.