Disclaimer: I do not own any rights to Buffy the Vampires Slayer or The Vampire Diaries (TV series), and I'm making no money off of this story.
Warning: Historical inaccuracies I'm going to blame on the dimensional change. ;) Set after BtVS (not following the comics arch), can be set anytime before the end of TVD S2 and after Bonnie gets her mojo really flowing (but no major spoilers).
Notes: Yes, I made a manip with this idea like a year ago, and August Fic-a-Day
has finally given me an excuse to write this one-shot. Any names from the 17th century were mix and matched first names and surnames from people involved with the trials. This is what happens when you're tired…I hope it doesn't seem too rushed.
Word Count: ~1960
"And you're sure about this?" Elena asked, again.
Bonnie took a breath, folding her sweater down into her bag to cover the assortment of supplies beneath. She wasn't 'sure', but something about the summons had stuck with her, refusing to leave her alone. More than anything, though, curiosity was tugging at her. If a couple hours meditating in the woods was all it took to get some answers, Bonnie was willing to take the risk.
"I won't be gone long." She looked over her shoulder to see Elena, arms crossed, a frown set on her face. Bonnie sighed. "They knew Grams, Elena. I've got to see what they have to say. Plus, with the trouble we get into, we could really use all the friends we can get."
Elena couldn't argue. She plopped down onto the edge of Bonnie's bed, looking defeated. "At least promise you'll leave if anything goes wrong. Anything, Bonnie."
Bonnie shook her head, a sad smile at her lips. "I doubt I'll even be able to answer the summons," she confessed, "but I promise, if this works... I'll leave as soon as I spot trouble." ***
Willow had received the summons in the shower.
While creepy whispering voices between rinse and repeat didn't make for the neatest party invitation ever, she'd been rather excited after the idea had sunk in.
Witchapalooza, the interdimensional edition. Ok, so this wasn't exactly Willow's first time playing around with dimensions since she'd become one with the big mojo, but, still, there was something interesting about the idea of meeting a group of witches from a dozen different alternate worlds and dimensions just for the sake of sharing information.
Willow set up the wards around her quarters, tacked a note outside her door--because the goddess only knew what would happen if one of the junior slayers came tromping in while she was slicing a hole in the universe--and went to work building the spell. ***
The thing about trouble was, by the time you spotted it, it was probably already too late. ***
The blackness of the void had been both terrifying and freeing. Willow, used to travelling in the 'between,' adjusted quickly to the sensation, but she could tell the younger witch in the distance was having trouble. She sent out her energy in golden tendrils, pulling the other woman closer.
"Hi, there. I'm Willow."
And speaking in the void was kinda strange too. The girl didn't pick up on it at first, but sent out her name, nevertheless. Bonnie Bennett.
"Good to meet you, Bonnie. Is this your first time? Don't worry, the need to vomit will pass in a few seconds." When the young witch still seemed distressed, Willow picked up on a recent ramble she'd had with her Wiccan students. "I once met an anthropomorphic duck sorceress at one of these inter-dimensional meetings, and she mentioned that trying to stare at your bill--umm--nose would help with the nausea. It's a Willow-approved method."
Willow didn't hear a reply from her. In fact, the red-headed witch was distracted from her new friend by the utter lack of other witches floating about. This was the right meeting place, wasn't it? Willow could feel it building inside her, the sense of something being very, very wrong.
A light exploded at the center of her universe, and in the flash, Willow thought she was staring at her reflection. Only, her face was wearing a dark, wicked smile beneath her narrowed eyes.
"It worked," the reflection seemed to say to… Wasn't that Bonnie?
Nope. Willow could still feel the younger witch clinging to her side. Which could only mean one thing.
"Oh boy," Willow voiced.
Bonnie echoed the sentiment. Then the light swallowed them whole. ***
Bonnie's first thought was that she was going to blame Caroline for her discomfort; her clothes were too heavy and her neckline itchy, which meant she was definitely in costume. And Caroline was probably responsible for said costume's authenticity. But when Bonnie blinked to consciousness, she realized she was in a small room , one Caroline Forbes had never visited, and that another body's weight was pressed against her shoulder.
The body jerked away, startled, and Bonnie turned to see a slightly familiar face.
Granted, the black 'between' hadn't left Bonnie with a fully realized image of the other witch, but Bonnie was fairly certain Willow hadn't been wearing such a drab wool skirt or her red hair tucked into a coif… Just when Bonnie was starting to recognize the outfit for what it was--the wide, pointed collar running down from her neck, the thick layers around her stocking-clad legs--Willow seemed to snap out of her stupor.
"Like I really needed another reason to dislike the pilgrims," Willow said.
Bonnie stretched her shoulders, feeling the bite of her corset through the shift against her skin, and knew she was dressed much the same. And that it wasn't a costume. "Where are we? Scratch that, when
Then the two realized they'd missed something obvious. Their wrists were bound together with cuffs, strange markings etched into the metal. Runes of some sort. Panic set in quickly.
"Nothing's working," Bonnie muttered, concentrating on the lock. Sweat gathered at her temples as she tried again. Her magic simply refused to be of use.
"Umm…" Willow looked sheepish. "I don't know how to tell you this, but I think we've just been duped by our dopplegangers."
Bonnie stared at her, less shocked than she should have been. "Like I really needed more dopplegangers in my life." ***
As it turned out, Bonnie and Willow had a little time to chat.
The dialogue started out as a way to come up with a plan of escape, but it quickly grew into a "getting to know your dimension" session. They paused when a man (very First Thanksgiving elementary play with his oversized belt-buckle and funny little hat) stopped in to verbally condemn the two, remind them of their inevitable trip to the gallows, throw in a mention of their follow-up vacation to Hell, and give them a drink of water.
Of course, he also provided them with a little valuable information. Apparently, they were in Salem, circa 1692, and Willow was someone named May Dike… Willow's inner feminist and outer lesbian was extremely displeased to hear that this was her doppleganger's true identity and not just a homophobic jibe from the Puritan.
"Well, no wonder she went evil," the red-head commented.
And, Bonnie the man had referred to as Benjamin Burrows' "negro slave."
Bonnie hadn't been too pleased with that label either. And she'd been even less pleased that he hadn't given her the doppleganger's name. She may have had family at the Salem trials, but she was fairly certain no familiar names had been listed amongst the executed in the history books… Still, she had to be related to the doppleganger, right? Unless this was Willow's dimension in 1692, or a third dimension all together… And then came the theory that they
were the two evil witches' dopplegangers, since apparently, May and the slave had come first on the timeline... The thought alone was enough to leave Bonnie dizzy with confusion.
When the Puritan left, Willow turned back to the younger witch. "What was I saying again?"
"That our best friends should lay off the vampire boyfriends," Bonnie said.
"Oh yeah," Willow nodded, looking sage, "I think that was pretty much my point. Of course, it could be worse. Your friend Elena could be dating an ex-vengeance demon… Surprisingly, that sort of thing happens in my little circle of--oh."
Bonnie shook her head. "Oh?"
Willow tried to wave her constrained fingers in excitement. "Oh, I just had an idea, oh! Just bare with me a minute, Bonnie…" Willow stared off into the dead space in front of them, her brow wrinkled as she called out. "I summon you, the vengeance demon, Anyanka! Come, and let me, umm, seek vengeance and stuff..." When nothing happened, Willow looked a little peeved. "Anyanka, Saint of Women Scorned, get your ass in here--I know for a fact you're running around this village!"
The door opened and a woman shuffled in, waving a frantic hand to quiet the two witches. "Alright, alright already! Keep your underthings on," she hissed. When she realized no one had heard the women, she closed the door behind her and blew the brown curl of off her brow.
Willow had never been so happy to see the demon, but when Anyanka glanced in her direction, there was sense of recognition. Willow had to remind herself that she wouldn't meet the woman for a few hundred years--if this was actually her Anya and not another dimension's…version.
Bonnie shot Willow a side-ways glance. "Who is…?"
Willow shook her head to stop the question from forming, silently promising to explain herself later.
Anyanka rolled her eyes. "Well, obviously, you know who I am, so can we get down to business? Which one of you has been scorned? And, please tell me you want to wish a massive amount of boils on the dumbass guarding the door. "
Bonnie raised a brow.
Willow smiled, "Actually, no. This isn't so much a lovers quarrel, but there is definitely some scorn involved and a definite need for a decent serving of vengeance. Anyanka, I wish…" ***
Willow reemerged into her room with a small, satisfied smile on her face. The place looked a mess. Shelves stripped of their books, bed tossed, the door scratched and scorched and beaten. But, as far as Willow could tell, the wards had held: no one in, no one out. Her double must have been more than pissed to find that she'd escaped one prison only to be stuck in another.
Of course, prison was the least of her problems.
Willow's smile grew just a little when she turned and found a painting she'd never seen before hanging above her fireplace mantel. It was a little morbid, sure, but it was the thought that counted.
On a canvas of dull oils was a rendering of the witch trials, two men holding down a woman with long red hair, coif lost to the ground, and her face filled with rage as she was prepared for execution.
In general, Willow looked on the witchhunts with horror and disgust, but this particular event….well, Willow was going to have a hard time explaining the painting of her look-alike to her friends and lover, and an even harder time explaining why the hateful eyes on the painting seemed to move ever-so slightly. ***
Bonnie was exhausted by the time she exited the woods. Part of it was due to the emotional drain of dimensional travel, and the other part was entirely physical--she'd found herself miles away from where she'd set up the spell. Apparently, her double had been trying to find her way to civilization and taken the wrong route. But that's not what Bonnie wanted to think about. All she wanted to think about was getting a hot shower and falling into bed, so she didn't exactly feel like answering the cell phone when it vibrated against her pocket. She lifted it, nevertheless, groaning into the receiver. "Bonnie, are you ok? You were gone for hours…"
Bonnie bit her lip. "I was? Sorry, Elena. I should have called. I'm fine." "Did you learn anything at your…meeting?"
Bonnie thought that one over and shrugged. "A few things, yeah." "Make any friends?"
"Sure." She smiled. "Actually, I have a feeling she's going to be more a mentor."
Bonnie tapped her other leg pocket, where she'd put the spell Willow had given her before they left the 'between'. Apparently, there was a much less nauseating spell for chatting with people from other dimensions. Bonnie had promised Willow she'd stay in touch. "So, all-in-all Witchapalooza was a success?"
Bonnie snorted. "Considering our track record? Yes, I’m calling this a success."
Elena breathed a sigh of relief. "Oh, I forgot to tell you… This package was delivered to your house. It kind of looks like it might be a frame."
"It's a painting." Bonnie grinned bitterly. "Yeah, I was expecting it."