**Disclaimer: I do not own any character in this story, either from Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Terminator:TSCC, nor do I profit from them in any way.**
Summary: After Sunnydale is destroyed the Summers move to LA, where Dawn attends a ballet class where she meets a new friend: Cameron. crossover with terminator:TSCC
Pairings: Dawn/Cameron and possibly more later
Dawn fell on her ass. Again.
“Ouch!” she complained loudly.
All the other girls laughed, causing Dawn’s cheeks to turn a bright red.
“Ms. Summers, please try to stay on your feet,” advised old Ms. Russo, the dancing instructor. “You’re about as graceful as a bull moose.”
The other girls laughed harder at the teachers scolding, and Dawn’s cheeks burned brighter.
‘I should have never joined this class,’ she chastised herself, then added ‘what kind of 19 year old blushes like a baby!’
“Sorry ma’am,” Dawn said meekly as she climbed to her feet. She had joined the Ballet class in the hopes of finding something different to do in this new city, but it had become apparent that she didn’t have the legs for dancing. It was all spinning and standing on tippy-toes, which she had each mastered, until she had to do them together. That was when her butt had met the floor, over and over.
She scanned the room, glad all the attention of her classmates was turning back to Ms. Russo, and exhaled loudly in relief.
“Problem Ms. Summers?” demanded Ms. Russo loudly. She was too much like a high school teacher for Dawn’s liking, and she seemed to have developed a certain distaste for one Dawn Summers, but Dawn refused to quit. Buffy had annoyingly commented that she would quit after the first lesson, as she quit everything. Dawn would have quit several times, if not for her sister’s educated assessment. She wanted to prove Buffy wrong.
“No ma’am” answered Dawn shyly, “just...um...breathing.”
“You sound like Darth Vader,” chided Russo, causing the class to burst into laughter again.
Dawn rolled her eyes. ‘This is way too much like high school’, she thought, ‘I’m so quitting after this class.’ Then she noticed one girl wasn’t laughing, but just blankly staring at her. Dawn looked her in the eyes, but when most people would look away the girl just blinked, and tilted her head slightly, almost like a quizzical cat.
Finally the girl looked away when Old Russo started talking again, ending a long moment of awkward eye contact. ‘What the hell was that about?’ Dawn asked herself. Dawn eyed the strange girl, and quickly realized that she was a much better dancer when the class began again. She was tall and slender, with long legs. She had long brown hair that was tied back in a pony tail, and wore a black leotard over purple leggings. She moved fluidly and easily through the motions Dawn found so difficult, graceful and agile, her every movement an extension of artistic expression.
The girl pivoted nimbly in a perfect Pirouette, and her eyes met Dawn’s again as she turned. Dawn quickly turned away, and felt her cheeks grow warm once more, embarrassed at being caught staring.
Finally the dreadful class ended.
All the girls filed to the back towards the locker and shower area. Dawn was last in line, when she noticed the girl was still dancing. Even without music the girl spun elegantly, her arms and legs moving in lithe unison.
When the talented woman noticed Dawn she stopped abruptly.
“You were looking at me during class,” she said. “Why?”
Dawn raised her eyebrows, surprised at the blunt question. “You’re good,” she answered. “Better than me. Probably better than Ms. Russo even.”
“She lacks dexterity,” the girl said matter-of-factly. “She is in the beginning stages of arthritis, which restricts her movements.”
“How do you know that?” asked Dawn.
The girl looked at her for a moment, then answered simply “I can tell.”
“Ok....” Dawn replied, perplexed by the odd reply. Looking for a change of subject, she asked “So... what’s your name?”
“My name is Cameron,” said the girl, and then in an obvious mimic of Dawn’s own question she asked “So... what’s your name?”
“Dawn,” she answered, ignoring the girl’s impression of her, not sure if she meant it jokingly or mockingly. “Why are you in this class if you’re better than the teacher?”
“I like dancing,” Cameron answered plainly.
“Well not me. I’m only in it because I want to prove to my stupid sister that I can do it.”
“I have a brother,” said Cameron. “He can be ‘stupid’ too.”
Dawn decided she liked this strange girl. She acted detached and almost mechanical, but it seemed more innocence and shyness rather than smugness, which Dawn had originally thought.
“Would you like to come over for dinner?” she asked on a sudden whim. “We just moved to LA a few weeks ago, and I haven’t really met anyone yet. My sister is making something pasta-like I think. She's sort of a crappy cook, but my friend Willow is there to help her, so hopefully whatever it is will be eatable. I hope.”
Cameron tilted her head and looked briefly puzzled, as if she didn’t understand the question.
“Well, only if you want-“ Dawn began, before being interrupted.
“Yes, I will come to dinner” said Cameron, smiling. “I just have to call my Mother, and let her know where I’ll be.”
Dawn worried briefly that she had invited a fourteen year old girl to her house, and accidently misjudged her age, but then remembered the dance class had been for girls over 18. The girl was probably just close to her mother, she decided.
Dawn waited while Cameron retrieved a cell phone from her bag and flipped it open.
“Sarah,” Cameron said after dialing and waiting for an answer, “I’m going to a friend’s house for dinner.”
“Yes, I do have a friend,” she responded to whatever the person on the phone had said, “her name is Dawn.”
Dawn pretended not to listen until finally Cameron said “Call me if there’s trouble,” before hanging up.
“Was that your sister?” asked Dawn.
“No, my mother,” Cameron replied as she threw her phone back into her bag.
“You call your mom ‘Sarah’?”
“Yes,” she said, then added “we joke around a lot,” In explanation.
“She didn’t believe that you have a friend?”
“No,” answered Cameron. “We move around a lot.”
It seemed to Dawn like Cameron was trying to come up with answers on the fly, like she was trying to hide something, but then dismissed it as sillyness. “We move around a lot too,” she told Cameron. “Well let’s go. Willow and Buffy will be wondering where I am."
“Ok,” said Cameron, smiling.