Faith the Barbarian.By Dave Turner.
Disclaimer: I do not own Buffy the Vampire Slayer or ‘Conan the Destroyer’. BtVS belongs to Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. ‘Conan’ belongs to the estate of Robert E Howard (I think). ‘Conan the Barbarian’ was written by John Milius and Oliver Stone, and directed by John Milius. I write these stories for fun not profit.
Crossover: The movie, ‘Conan the Barbarian’.
Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation; Written in glorious English-English. Mainly American idioms are used throughout this fic.
Timeline: Post BtVS Season 7. About three months after the events depicted in ‘Faith the Destroyer’.
Words: 13 Chapters of 2500+ words.
Warnings: Some Violence.
Summary: ‘Conan the Barbarian’ xover; Faith and Dawn continue to hack, slash and ‘exotic’ dance their way across the world. This time they must rescue the Mayor of Haafi’s daughter from the evil Settees! Cue heroic music!
Having put the young Queen Jehnna on the throne of Arymlap and having been thrown out of that Kingdom. Faith and Dawn have ridden west to the coast and the busy port of Haafi. Here they have plied their trade amongst the docks and back streets of that bustling city; until one day…0=0=0=0As I walked out through Prophets Square,
A fair maid I did meet.
She asked me to see her home,
She lived in Bleaker Street.…and away you santy,
My dear honey.
Oh, you Haafi girls,
Can you dance the polka?
Standing in the main hall of the Haafi watch-house, Captain Abijah eyed the priest warily. The man had been found wondering in Cherry Street by one of Abijah’s patrols. He’d been dressed in an old flour barrel (not the normal attire for a priest, or indeed anyone else) he claimed to have been beaten and robbed by two women.
The priest belonged to the snake cult of Sett that was spreading like a rash throughout the land; they were supposed to promote purity and one-ness with the universe. Abijah suspected that the priest had been practicing ‘one-ness’ with one of the port’s licensed prostitutes. Most likely he’d refused to pay her price and he’d ended up being ‘rolled’ by her pimp for his foolishness.
The Mayor had ordered the city’s official’s to co-operate with this new sect; there was a rumour that the mayor’s own daughter had become mixed up with the cult. Whatever the truth about the mayor’s daughter, Abijah knew his duty; and his duty was to the law first and foremost. Picking up his wax covered writing board he turned towards the priest; someone had taken the man’s flour barrel and replaced it with a blanket and given him a cup of wine.
“Right sir,” began Abijah with a world weariness common to policemen from time immemorial, “can you tell me what happen?”
“Of course,” began the priest still rubbing his temple, “I was walking in the Square of Prophets…
“That’s interesting, sir,” Abijah’s interest was, in fact, pricked, “what would you have been doing there then?”
The Square of Prophets was a place where all the cities religious groups could go to argue out their theological differences. As these ‘discussions’ often ended in bloodshed and the Watch kept a strong presence in the square to nip any theological disagreements in the bud. As a result of the relatively high law enforcement presence many of the port’s licensed prostitutes plied their trade in the square it being safer than the nearby streets or down by the docks.
“What?” for a second the priest looked guiltily at the watch captain, “Um, I was, you know…I was listening to the lies spread by the unbelievers.”
“Of course you were, sir,” Abijah nodded his head slowly and made a note on his writing board, ‘looking for nooky’ it said, “You were saying?”
“Um yes,” the priest pulled his blanket more tightly around his thin shoulders, “as I say I was walking and listening to the lies spread by these less enlightened, so-called prophets, when I was approached by a distressed young woman who claimed to be lost.”
“Can you describe this young woman, sir?” this was beginning to sound all too familiar to Abijah, there was little chance of catching the perpetrators, but he had to ask these questions for forms sake.
“Oh yes,” nodded the priest, “she was about this high,” he held his hand at about shoulder height, “long dark brown hair, blue eyes. Well dressed, she had an odd accent…sounded like she came from the Republic.”
“I see, sir,” Abijah jotted the description down, “would you recognise her again if you saw her?”
“Certainly,” the priest replied fervently, “no doubt about it!”
“That’ll be useful, sir,” agreed Abijah, “if you’d like to continue?”
“Yes, well of course I said I’d help her find her way home,” the priest sounded full of self justification (or crap as Abijah called it), “as it happened I knew the street where she lived…”
“Let me guess,” interrupted Abijah, “it wouldn’t have been ‘Bleaker Street’ would it?”
“Why yes,” beamed the priest, “how did you know?”
“Lucky guess, sir,” sighed the captain with a shake of his head.
Bleaker Street was one of the liveliest streets in the port of Haafi, or, a cesspool of depravity. It depended on your outlook on life; to be honest Abijah was all in favour of places like Bleaker Street. It kept all the trouble in one area and provided a safety valve for the city’s population. It also brought in a pretty penny in taxes so no one was in a hurry to close it down.
“Anyway,” continued the priest, “when we got to Bleaker Street she claimed to live at number forty-four, her sister was even at the door to welcome her home.”
“And the sister, sir?”
“Very much like the girl but a few years older,” the priest spoke wisely, “I’d say that although they might share a mother they didn’t share the same father.”
“Probably not…sir,” agreed Abijah as he made another note on his board, ‘total plonker’ it said.
“Well, anyway,” the priest continued with his tale of woe, “the older girl was so pleased to see her younger sister home safe and sound, that she invited me in for a drink and something to eat.”
“If I may sir,” Abijah held up his hand to prevent the priest from continuing his story, “I think I know what happens next, just correct me if I’m wrong.”
The priest smiled eagerly.
“They invited you in, they here both probably so grateful that the girl was home safe that they were very attentive. I would wager they gave you strong drink?”
The priest nodded.
“Then I expect they gave you something to eat and more to drink,” Abijah waited for the priest to nod his head in confirmation. “Then I wager they gave you even more strong drink after which you fell asleep. On awaking the following morning you found yourself alone and all your possessions gone.”
“Why that’s amazing,” the priest looked in wonder at the policeman, “how did you work that out?”
“Well, sir,” Abijah gave the priest (or ‘complete moron’, as Abijah noted on his board) a thin lipped smile, “after a while you get a feeling, a six sense as it were, for these things.”
“Well, I never,” sighed the priest shaking his head in amazement.
Abijah made yet another note on his board, ‘gullible pratt’ it said.
“Can you tell me what was stolen?” Abijah’s stylus hovered over his board.
“Of course,” the priest coughed to clear his throat, “I had a purse with fifteen,” the priest eyed the policeman for a moment before changing his mind, “no, I tell a lie twenty-five silver sheckles in it…”
“Yes you do,” agreed Abijah just too softly for the priest to hear clearly.
“…my vestments of course.” continued the priest becoming more self important as he spoke, “But most importantly the harlot stole my badge of office!”
“Dear, dear,” Abijah commiserated insincerely, “that must be terrible for you. Now then, this talisman, what did it look like?”
“It’s not a ‘talisman,” replied the priest testily, “it is the sign of the one true god and a symbol of my holy office.”
“Of course it is, sir,” Abijah gave the priest a look that would have done a dead fish proud, “but as there’s so many, ‘one true gods’, you’ll have to tell me what this charm looked like.”
“I keep telling you,” the priest was starting to get angry now, “its not a talisman or a charm it’s a…”
“Lucky amulet?” suggested Abijah straight faced, “Like a rabbit’s foot maybe?”
The priest turned red in the face before slowly calming himself and continuing with his description.
“No,” he snapped, “not like a rabbit’s foot it’s a snake with two heads facing each other thus,” the priest held up his arms to show the policeman what his trinket looked like.
“Very holy I’m sure,” sighed Abijah as he made a quick sketch on his board, “I would imagine such an important keepsake was made of gold?”
“Oh yes,” the priest nodded his head emphatically.
“Not base metal painted gold then?”
Abijah could almost see the steam coming out of the priest’s ears.
“Well…sir,” Abijah shook his head sadly; “I doubt you’ll see the money or your clothes again. But your jewellery might turn up.”
“Good…” the priest was only just holding on to his temper at the policeman’s continued jibes, “If there’s nothing else, I’ll be on my way.”
Turning the priest started to head for the door still wrapped in the blanket.
“Excuse me, sir,” Abijah called after him, “the blanket sir.”
“What about it?”
“It’s Watch property sir, I’ll be wanting it back,” Abijah pointed out reasonably as the priest hesitated, “…now.”
“But!” spluttered the priest, “Do you expect me to walk through the city naked?”
Shrugging, Abijah spread his hands helplessly, “Surely your god will provide?”
“Alright then,” with an ill grace the priest took off the blanket and threw it towards Abijah, it landed on the floor between them. “Let me warn you…Captain, your attitude has been noted and I will be complaining to your superiors!”
Turning once again the naked priest marched towards the door with all the dignity he could muster.
“Excuse me sir!” called Abijah once again, the priest turned to look at him, “You’re not going to walk home like that are you?”
“Yes,” the priest pulled his shoulders back, “as you’ve said, my god will provide.”
“Constable!” Abijah called to a watchman who was just going out on patrol, “Arrest that man for attempted public nudity.”
“Sir!” called the constable as he put the priest in an arm lock.
“BUT!” the priest struggled with the constable.
“Any more of that and I’ll have a charge of ‘resisting arrest’ added,” explained Abijah, “City Ordinance four-seven-five, paragraph ‘D’ clearly states that a constable may arrest anyone he believes to be about to leave a building in a state of undress without good reason; such as fire, escaping from kidnappers, sporting events…”
“But,” complained the priest as he was dragged towards the cells, “I see whores walking the street wearing nothing and no one arrests them!”
“That’s because they’re licensed prostitutes, sir,” Abijah turned to the constable, “take him away Constable Methuwshelach.”
“YOU CAN’T DO THIS TO ME!” screamed the priest as he was dragged away, “I’m a priest of the great god…”
The door down to the cells slammed shut cutting off the priest’s words.
“…and nowhere near as attractive as even the commonest street whore,” Abijah shook his head bemused at the very idea of arresting prostitutes for public nudity; how else was the woman supposed to attract customers?
Turning to go back to his office, Captain Abijah smiled to himself. It had been a good morning so far. He may not be able to catch the women who had robbed the priest but at least he’d kept a dangerous nudist off the streets.0=0=0=0
Trying to breath only through her mouth, Faith continued to loosen the bars in the high window of their cell. The stench down here was terrible; the new mayor might have introduced many enlightened laws to the port of Haafi but so far prison reform and sewers weren’t amongst them.
Resting her arms for a moment, Faith turned to look at Dawn as she lay snoring on the none to clean straw of the cell’s floor. Faith wondered how the smell hadn’t woken her up. Shaking her head, she went back to work on the bars. If they’d been lower she’d have been able to pull them out of the wall, no problem. As it was the window was high up in the wall and she could only just reach them; she was having to work them loose a little at a time.
Things had been going quite well for them in Haafi up until the point they’d robbed that priest. It was there own fault, she supposed, they’d spent his money (the miser only had ten Sheckles on him) but they’d got fifty for the gold talisman he’d been wearing. His clothes they’d sold for a few pennies to, Zetsiyah, a prostitute who turned ‘novelty’ tricks; she’d said they might come in useful.
To celebrate their good fortune, Dawn and Faith had gone out on the town. After a few cups of wine they had decided to try something more ‘exotic’. This was how they’d fallen in with the Black Lotus peddler. The guy’d said it was good stuff, Faith smiled ruefully; it had certainly put her lights out which said something for its potency. There weren’t many things that could lay a slayer low like that.
The last thing Faith remembered from the previous night was dragging an unconscious Dawn along a street and bumping into two Watchmen. She’d woken up in the cell sometime later with a throbbing head and a disgusting taste in her mouth.
Groaning, Dawn rolled over on the straw and opened an eye.
“OOOOOH!” her hand went to her forehead as she winced at the sound of her own voice. “Oh gods,” she moaned much quieter this time as she slowly sat up, “like, where are we?”
“Jail,” Faith went back to loosening the bars.
“Faith!” Dawn closed her eyes and held up her free hand signalling Faith to stop doing whatever it was she was doing, “Do you, like have to make so much noise?”
“Gotta get outta here,” Faith ignored Dawn’s complaints and kept working on the bars.
“Like why?” pleaded Dawn, the look on her face said she’d just discovered the smell that pervaded the cell, “Like, what’s the point? We were only, like drunk and disorderly, that’s just a fine, right?”
“Right,” agree Faith stopping to rest her arms again, “but what if they trace that gold pendant thing back to us?”
“So?” Dawn got unsteadily to her feet.
“Do you know what the penalty for robbery is?” Faith started to work on the bars again.
“No,” Dawn staggered across the cell to join Faith at the window.
“Six months in the city brothel,” explained Faith, “and I don’t mean mopping the floors.”
“WHAT!?” squeaked Dawn, immediately regretting her outburst, it was several seconds before she could speak again, “What are you waiting for? Get those bars out!”0=0=0=0
“Nearly got ‘em,” Faith pulled on the bar; standing on Dawn’s back made the job so much easier.
“Hurry up,” came a muffled voice from beneath Faith’s feet.
“It would be easier if ya didn’t move around so much,” Faith started to ease the second bar out of its setting.
“Like, excuse me for breathing,” Dawn snapped from the floor, “but you haven’t got, like an elephant standing on your back, much!”
“HEY!” Faith stopped working and looked down at her support, “I’ll have ya know I’m exactly the right weight for a woman my age and height.”
Dawn never got a chance to argue the point as someone started to unlock the cell door.
“Whatever happens,” Faith said in a rushed whisper as she jumped to the floor, “stick close to me.”
The door opened on rusty hinges making Dawn wince again, a jailer stuck his head around the door.
“Alright you two,” the man called, “you’re outta here. The Mayor wants to see you.”
“He does?” Dawn looked at Faith uncertainly, then recovered herself a little and added, “Yeah, like about time too!”0=0=0=0
After an interminable hike along corridors and passageways the two women where led out into an audience chamber. Tall windows let in light down one side of the room; an empty throne stood on a dais opposite the door and a number of scribes sat at desks scribbling away at parchments with quill pens. Looking over her shoulder Faith saw that the door was guarded by two men with swords and small shields.
“…I want to crush my enemies, see them driven before me, and hear the lamentation of their women!” Announced a man, Faith suspected was the mayor; he stood at a wash stand washing his hands, picking up a towel he turned to glance at Dawn and Faith.
“Don’t you think that’s a little harsh, sir?” asked an elderly scribe, “After all, it’s only the mid-term elections.”
“Hmm? Maybe you’re right…whatever,” he waved the man away before turning to look at the other scribes in the room. “Alright, everyone,” the mayor finished wiping his hands on the towel and smiled as he spoke, “you can all take a break for half an hour while I speak with these ladies.”
Faith’s mouth dropped open as she stared at the mayor.
“But sir?” said one of the guards.
“It’s alright, Yehochanan I’ll be quite safe,” he turned his eyes on Dawn and Faith, “won’t I ladies?”
“Y-yes boss,” stammered Faith.
The events of this chapter were inspired by the following song.
You might like to copy and paste this to your favourite search engine and hear Steeleye Span singing ‘New York Girls’.