Good Guy Gone Bad
Disclaimer in first chapter.
A/N: So, this is an example of the common Potter-cliche in which a good guy (usually Hermione or Harry) is seduced by a Baddie (usually Lucius or Voldemort) and eventually becomes evil or morally ambiguous. A lot of times this cliche is accompanied by a pole-switch (the good guys are actually the bad guys and vice versa), but sometimes the author genuinely has our heroes turn evil. Hmm
, I thought, Who is a shining beacon of good that I could turn evil, and who could I have taint him/ her in a really creepy way?
Pretty sure that this ficlet is gonna piss people off, but... oh well.
The first time she went, she was following Willow. She was worried about her ex-girlfriend: just because they weren't dating anymore, it didn't mean that Tara had stopped caring. It hurt to care, but it wasn't something she could turn off at will, and she didn't know if she would
if she could
. One thing was certain though, Willow had gone astray and no-one, especially Tara, was sure what was going on in the redhead's mind. So, with the aid of a simple eye-averting cantrip, she followed Willow down the streets and into the bad parts of town. Her first impression of the place was that it must be a suck-house, like the one that Riley had been going to… but then she felt it.It
was a miasma of power so thick she nearly choked on it.It
had a flavor that spoke of spices, and foods both savory and sweet.It
reached out towards her with a single, seeking tendril.
Tara did not retreat so much as run away, barely holding back screams.
The second time was after. After the crash, after Willow renounced magic, just after
. Tara wasn't even sure whether or not she belonged in the group anymore, with everything that was going on. Shouldn't she have seen this coming? Couldn't she have stopped it? She didn't know, and wondering was tearing her apart inside. Yes, she was friends with them, they would – they had
defended her… but she still felt as though she'd been an adjunct to Willow: more a fungus-like growth than a true addition.
So she came back, wondering what it was that Willow and Amy had found here that was so worth it. Wondering what had drawn them in in the first place. It was this curiosity, mingled with her inner turmoil, that allowed her to stand still as a thread of power tentatively reached out, trying to connect with her own inner magic.
Tara stared at it, mesmerized almost like a bird staring at a snake, as it paused before her and began to change. The smell, the sense
of comingling, of many become one, was still there – but she saw something opening, and the power reaching towards her was suddenly clean of the others' taint. This power was smoother, somehow darker
. It reminded her of patchouli and whiskey, a smooth flavor.
It paused before her, maybe waiting to see if she would run again, but Tara stood her ground. She expected a sudden strike, was bracing herself for an attack of some sort, when what actually came next was more of a caress
. The foreign power reached out and stroked
hers, bringing her own magic to the fore and filling her to the skin until her whole body tingled. She gasped, back arching involuntarily, as the feeling continued – and grew stronger
. Her whole body was thrumming with pleasure. It stopped suddenly, and Tara whimpered at the loss.
Then, and only then, did it do what she had at first expected: it struck. The thread of magic connected and she screamed in pleasure, writhing and twisting, not sure if she wanted to get closer or escape from the overwhelming sensations. She felt an echo down the bond and got a quick flash of a man with a shadowed face reclining on dark cushions before she was swept away into the sensations.
Tara came back to herself hours later and lying on the pavement. She felt a thin piece of magic, foreign to her own, pulse gently against her skin in a phantom touch before receding into the darkness towards the not-a-suck-house. Her feet were unsteady beneath her and she had to brace herself against a wall to stand.Is this what Willow…?
She shook her head, This was nothing like what she described. Willow said she saw galaxies and stars, she said that it felt like someone opened her mind. I – this was so physical…
Tara shivered, remembering.
A faint line of light was growing visibly in the east, forcibly reminding her of how late it was. Tara wrapped her arms around herself and swayed a little, then turned herself around and began the trek home. Sunnydale was dangerous at night, and really, it was a miracle that she'd survived outside like that unmolested. It would be foolish to test her luck any further, even if her curiosity had only been piqued by this 'visit'… she wouldn't be returning here. At least, not any time soon.
Elsewhere, a man with a scarred face and dark intentions licked his lips and smiled:
"Honey and cloves."
A/N2: Because we never see Dark!Tara, and no-one ever does anything interesting with Rack.