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This story is No. 13 in the series "2009 Fic-a-day Challenge". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Illyria has lived seven lives. Two prove no different even with a new possible guide there are some things an Old One has just not seen.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Literature > Dresden Files, TheEffieFR711,236181,90323 Aug 0923 Aug 09Yes
Title: Understanding
Author: Effie
Rating: FR7
Disclaimer: I don’t own BTVS nor do I own the Dresden Files
Fandom: Dresden Files
Summary: Illyria has lived seven lives. Two prove no different even with a new possible guide there are some things an Old One has just not seen.
Word Count: 1162

As time had passed Illyria found her powers growing and her shell accommodating. Illyria had once lived seven lives at once it was a concept humans would never understand. She understood Winifred’s memories to suspect that they would imagine it as two different hers-two different consciousness, just copies of each other–– or maybe living lives linked like long-hour gaming sessions, where the screen was split and you could see the two players at once.

Humans would never understand being able to see, beyond basic physical sight, in two instances and react to them simultaneously from the same stream of consciousness. No matter how many realities or distances between the lives they were connected to one consciousness.

Then omniscience would never be something grasped by humans until they evolved and left their mortal coil. Omniscience was not like humans believed it to be either. Seeing everything that would be, could be, and was everywhere was limiting. Changing one thing changed everything which rendered everything different, what could be would be different, what was no longer was. A player like Illyria tended to politely give omniscient beings the finger when entering a reality in some way.

Illyria now lived two lives. One in the reality the shell had called her own with her Wesley because none others were truly hers though they would do. One in the reality that was saturated with magic but infinitely different from the other one, where two worlds were intimately connected to not truly be separate.

Currently the second existence was sitting in a park in Chicago looking at the humans and non-human beings live. She listened to the Song of the Green and pondered helping the fledging wizard with his fight. She did this while the first existence was contemplating storming and destroying something. She was calm and furious at the same time; it was not contradictory because she was both curious and enraged at single instances in the fabric of existence.

Seeing the wizard fight, with power against such strong magical creatures was making her wish to join and see what he would do in her truer form. Illyria had developed a certain fondness for humans that she would deny in either of her current selves. She was however curious to see what this human was possible of.
She could sense potential in him.

She decided to kill the creature about to overpower (though not kill) him because she was growing bored. The creature was arrogant and the man was frightened, desperate, and needing to leave there. It reminded her too much of Wesley as she also decided to kill and storm something in Maryland.

She was next to the creature in an instant, ripping it apart and collecting the coin that slipped out of its shocked body. The man was gaping at her.

“Rise human,” She said, feeling rather pleased at his flabbergasted expression. The coin in her hand protested with the being inside. She tried to shatter it in her grip but found it resisting although now it was more bent. The being inside wailed in anger and hatred.

The man closed his mouth and looked unsure about what to do.

“If I had thought to kill you, you would already be dead.” She said. The man nodded. He got up, cautious and looked at her.

“How did you do that?” he demanded.

“I willed it.” She said simply because it had been true despite the fact that the man would misinterpret the words as humans were apt to do.

“So you’re God now?” He said sarcastically.

“Not a mere god,” She said arrogantly, with purpose to see this human’s character. “I was once a God to gods, a God-king.”

“Once, huh? Got fired?” he said. She smiled at him; an inhuman smile and she knew his innards, because of long forgotten traces of ancestral memory, twisted with the wrongness of it. The expression should not have been on a human face nor truly possible on it. “What are you?”

“It matters not,” She said looking at him. This wizard was a warrior. “What I once was I am no longer, will be again.” She said simply. “You are of interest to me.” She said. “What do you call yourself?”

“Harry,” He growled looking unsure of what to do. He had the instinct to survive and Illyria sense the magical build up in the air, in his rings.

“I am Illyria, Harry.” She said deliberately stepping away from him. “I am in need of a guide in this world.”

“A guide for what?” He growled looking at her hand.

“A guide to this world,” She said looking around. “This is new to me, unfamiliar. I had a guide but he died and no longer is. I cannot will him back, my time for that has long since passed. I need to learn about this world, the changes.” The coin tried to fly out of her hands and she instinctively clenched it harder. The coin made an unpleasant sound as it bent in half. Now it was perfectly concave.

Harry looked at her in shock. “Holy,” He said looking like he wanted both to laugh and be in awe. He chose to grin instead at the action. “Why me?” he asked.

“It does not matter,” The truth was he was convenient and there. If he proved inadequate she could kill him and find a better guide. “I need a guide that will help me in this world,” the man nodded.

“I can try to help you; help you find someone to be your guide, even if it isn’t me. If you do anything to harm anyone though,” He tried to look threatening but felt it futile.

“Understood,” She said simply. He nodded.

“Come on, we need to leave before the cops come.” Illyria nodded and followed him to an automobile statured in his signature. He had spent a good time in this vehicle which she vaguely recalled as being a Beetle. As she sat next to him, the coin going into a bag all the while never directly touching it, she jerked.

“What?” He asked, wary.

“It’s disturbing,” She said unable to comprehend this.

“What is?” He asked again, weariness and paranoia thick in his voice. She looked straight at him, unable to hide the disturbing nature of it.

“The world’s largest rubber band ball,” She said, shuddering as she read the name in her other life.

“When did you see that?” He asked confused.


“But you’re here-“

“I have lived seven lives at once I am at two.” He looked confused but nodded.

“And you’ve seen a lot,” She nodded. “I’m guessing you’re old, dirt old and think human’s are pretty much above mud overall am I right?” Again the same response. “And this bothers you?”

“It is…wrong.” She said simply. The man began to laugh and Illyria did not understand as her other self left Chevy Chase, Maryland as fast as she could.

AN: I don't know where my mind was going with this but Illyria had to meet Harry in my head. Please review, loved or hated. Criticism always welcomed!

The End

You have reached the end of "Understanding". This story is complete.

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