This is basically a response to quite a few stories I’ve seen recently, and to a long thread about tropes in Buffyverse fanfic on the Twisting the Hellmouth forums; none of the drabbles are based on any one story. I’ve chosen to write about Dawn Summers, but it would have been easy to write something similar about most of the Buffyverse characters.
I can believe a lot of things in Buffy fanfic, but one I have trouble with is the super-competent Scooby, the idea that the characters will easily walk into any job that they want, regardless of qualifications or experience. There are sometimes a few practical problems - and if you're writing about a real job, you have no excuse not to do the research and find out what they are.
And of course there might be a few problems if the Scooby actually gets the job!
Six 100-word Drabbles; all characters belong to their respective creators, soulless media conglomerates, etc. No warnings, apart from one slightly squicky idea.1: NCIS Agent
Dear Miss Summers,
I must inform you that your application for appointment as an NCIS Special Agent has been rejected. We have been unable to trace your activities prior to May 2003; while we understand that you were a resident of Sunnydale, California, and that most records were lost with the city, we cannot locate evidence of your birth, primary school education, etc. which should be on file in Los Angeles.
This information is essential for the full background check required for agents, and for all other careers in NCIS. Without it we cannot proceed.
Should you wish to appeal... 2: United Nations Translator
Thank you for your application. In order to become a UN translator you must be fully proficient in French and proficient in at least two other official UN languages; English, Russian, Arabic, Chinese or Spanish. You are expected to have worked in a French-speaking country (France, Congo etc.)
Your Spanish and English exceed requirements, but your French does not meet our standards. Your other qualifications (Turkish, Latin, Italian, Sumerian) are impressive, but we are not currently hiring for those languages. Fyarl is new to us; should we need a translator we will bear you in mind…
Sincerely…3: NCIS Agent (2)
Thank you for your letter requesting immediate appointment as an NCIS Special Agent. While we have confirmed that your uncle (J.Gibbs) and cousin (T.McGee) are employed by this agency, minimum qualifications are a Baccalaureate degree, full security clearance, and several months training, which would not be possible in the time frame you requested. Your association with a known felon (F.Lehane) would also be problematic.
Also, we cannot guarantee that agents will be permanently based in Washington; they are stationed as needed by the service.
We cannot make exceptions, especially in cases where suspicions of nepotism might arise.
Should you wish... 4: Watcher
I’m really sorry, but the Council can’t offer you a post as Watcher at this time. Your qualifications are exceptional, but you would be expected to come into contact with magic users and artefacts which are unprepared for your power; we really can’t afford any more exploding talismans or catatonic witches. Your tendency to be kidnapped or suffer magical or demonic accidents on Tuesdays might also cause problems.
P.S. – The next time you’re in Council headquarters PLEASE do something about the magical portal in the sanitary towel bin – we still have no idea where it leads!5: Demon Queen
Dear Miss Summers,
Lord Sweet extends his compliments, but regrets that he is no longer seeking a bride. On reflection he realises that his summoning by Mr. Harris was more than “magic gone wonky,” and would not have been possible had he not felt some genuine physical attraction to Mr. Harris. Accordingly he is currently undergoing gender reassignment sorcery, and will debut as Lady Sweet later this year. After that she plans to pursue a more active relationship with Mr. Harris, and asks you to pass on a request that he keep his calendar free from September onwards.
Yours sincerely...6: ...And One She Did
“This is amazing,” said Rodney McKay. “Five times the power output of a ZPM, and there’s no sign that it’s ever going to run down. And you say that your new translator figured it out?”
“Kinda,” said Jack O’Neill guiltily. “She found an old Sumerian tablet, read that, and there she was.”
“Bring her out to Atlantis,” said Rodney, “no telling what other discoveries she might make.”
“Ummm…. You really don’t get it. She read the tablet and there she was…” Jack pointed at the green orb, and wondered how he was going to explain things to the Watcher’s Council….End
Pure BtVS plus crossovers with NCIS and Stargate Atlantis. The last one probably owes quite a lot to Don Sample's excellent BtVS / Stargate crossovers, which are a lot less silly.