A/N Spoilers: Epilogue compliant for Harry Potter and Post Season 7 for BTVS
Disclaimer: This is a derivative work, I do not own Harry Potter or BTVS.
Hermione was just cleaning up after lunch when she heard the doorbell ring. She thought it odd since everyone she knew just knocked and walked in except for her parents. But they were on Holiday in Majorca. The doorbell rang again. Rose, who was helping her at the time, looked up to her and asked "Mummy, can I answer that?"
Hermione frowned "No, dear I think we should answer it together."
She bent down to scoop her up while making sure her wand was ready in her other hand. Together they went to the front door. Peeking through the peep hole, she saw a petite young woman standing on her doorstep. She had short blond hair and hazel eyes, dressed quite fashionably and she was looking warily around her. Hermione had never seen this woman before but maybe Ron knew her as she had breezed past the notice-me-not charms that kept solicitors away. She undid the latch on the door and opened it."Hello, can I help you?" she asked the young woman.
"Maybe, is this the Weasley Residence?
"Yes it is." she replied.
Relief passed over the woman's face as if she had found what she was looking for. "I have a problem that only you or your husband can solve."
Her Mummy had put her down and let the stranger in the house. Rose stared at the blonde haired stranger and she recognized her. This was the woman from her dreams, the one that fought the monsters. She was important, Rose knew, she kept Mummy, Daddy and even dopey Hugo safe. But she shouldn't be here now. It was too soon. Later when she was older, this woman would teach her to fight monsters. But not now, she wasn't ready to be strong yet. She knew she should tell Mummy that this was her dream lady; she just needed to wait for the right time.
Hermione made Rose go upstairs to play in the nursery with Hugo and then showed the woman to the couch. "I was just making some tea. Would you like some?"
The woman smiled, "Yes that would be great. Just don't bother putting any truth serum in it. I would like to think that you could trust me or at least hear my story first."
Hermione frowned "Why would I do that? Are you planning on being untruthful?"
"No, not untruthful. I am just not ready to give up all of my secrets just yet. Oh and the last wizard I visited tried to dose me and then tried to erase my memory when I caught him in the act."
"What was his name and did you kill him?" Hermione asked fearfully.
She wondered now if she did the right thing in inviting this woman in, although by looking at the woman she didn't seem capable of overpowering anyone. More likely a stiff breeze would knock her over.
"I didn't kill him; I just stopped him from erasing my memory. I broke his hand and snapped his wand."
Hermione blanched at the image in her head. "His name? You were going to tell me his name."
"It was Cannoli or Zambini or something like that."
"Did you mean Zabini?"
"Yes, that was his name. Do you know him?"
"We were in school together, same year, different houses"
Hermione noticed the confusion on the woman's face and explained "it was an English Boarding School. But how did you meet him?"
The woman gave her a sad smile and said "That is toward the end of my story. Would you let me start at the beginning?"
Hermione nodded. The woman took a sip of her tea and then began her tale.
My name is Buffy Summers-Miller and I had just recently gotten married. It was the first time for both of us and it was perfect. The perfect day, the perfect weather, etc. Perhaps that was the problem, it was too perfect. Afterwards, we went on our honeymoon. We had decided on Egypt. Why Egypt? I know not the usual place for a honeymoon but hey neither me or my husband had ever been and I wanted to see the pyramids before I die again plus do some exploring as I'm always up for a spot of violence. And no, we were not slumming it:
Five star hotels, a private jet to Aswan and Abu Simbel and then a nice luxurious and relaxing cruise down the Nile. But we never made it that far. Our trip ended at a bazaar in Cairo. Graham, that's my husband's name, found this beautiful sword at this one vendor's table. It was perfectly weighted and balanced. But when Graham went to test the sharpness of the blade, he pricked his thumb and immediately collapsed. I panicked and quickly went in search of the vendor. He had disappeared into the thick of the crowd and I lost him.
I went back to Graham, sheathed the sword and picked up my husband and took him to Hospital. The doctors could find nothing wrong with him.
No reason at all for him to be in a coma. I knew then that he was in a cursed sleep. I left Graham in the hospital for now; they could better care for him than I could at home or at my hotel. I grabbed the sword, hailed a taxi and went back to my hotel. I called my friend Willow to come to Egypt to investigate. She came immediately. How immediate you ask? Within the hour, twenty minutes tops. Where did she come from?
Why England, of course. Did I mention that Willow is a witch? No not a witch like you more of a mother earth type of a witch. Anyways, she examines the sword and discovers that it has been cursed. Which of course, I could have told her since it put my husband in a coma. I asked her if she could remove the curse from both the sword and my husband. She did her witchy thing over the sword but the curse was still there. Willow was stumped. We then went back the hospital and tried to remove the curse on Graham. We thought at first it might be a sleeping beauty curse, so I bent over and kissed him. No reaction, he was still in a coma. Willow thought perhaps it was the other sleeping beauty curse.
"How does that curse work?" I asked.
"Just like the other one except you have to rape your husband instead of kissing him." She replied.
I blanched at the thought. The idea of raping my husband was abhorrent to me. "Let's leave that as a last resort. Is there some other way to figure out this curse?"
Willow agreed to save that as a last resort kind of thing. So we decided to move Graham to one of our Facilities in Rome. Do you know how hard it is to transport someone in a coma across international borders? Not an easy task to say the least.
The woman paused to take a sip of her tea, "Sorry if I seem to be rambling here. I keep thinking that if I don't explain this to someone I'll go mad."
Hermione sighed, "That's alright. If it were my husband in a coma I would go spare too." It was then that Hermione noticed that Rose was still lurking about. She was about to tell her off when a glance from the woman made Rose shrink. She offered a quick apology to her Mum and sprinted up the stairs to the nursery. Before she could question the woman about why her look sent her daughter scurrying, the woman restarted her story.
So where was I? Oh yes, Italy. Rome, to be specific. After getting Graham settled, I started making inquiries about the cursed sword. A name came up, Zabini, but I was warned that he was one of those bigoted wand-waving idiots, sorry no offense I'm sure you're not bigoted, but I didn't care: I was desperate at this point. He was as every bit an arrogant ass that I thought he would be. He couldn't solve my problem but he was able to point me in the right direction.
You ask if that was before or after I broke his hand and his wand, definitely after. Don't looked so shocked, that was the only way he would give the likes of me any information. Alright, I'll tell you how it went down.
After my sources had pointed to Mr. Zabini, I took it upon myself to visit the gentleman in his Italian villa. No, I will not tell you how I got passed his protections and wards, just know that I did. And even knowing that I got past all of his wards, he still decided that insulting me was wisest course of action. I knocked on his door, just like I did here, but his answer was much less polite.
"What do you want?" he barked out.
"I need information that I was told that you could provide" I replied.
"Why would I give a lowly Muggle any information?"He replied quite haughtily
"Well I'm not just some lowly Muggle, am I?"
He did recognize me and he let me in. Why did recognize me? Let us just say that
Among certain groups in Italy, I'm quite famous and the people that Mr. Zabini had been associating with know me very well. We settled down for tea, such a civilized custom to break the ice. Except Mr. Zabini decided it would be a good idea to drug my tea with truth serum. I picked up on the smell immediately, apparently his contacts failed to warn him about my acute sense of smell. I "accidentally" dropped the tea cup. Then I warned him not to try that again. He apologized saying you couldn't be too careful. But then he compounded his mistake by trying to erase my memory and send me on my way without my info. I caught his hand before he could wave his wand. I got a bit carried away and accidentally broke his hand and his wand. OK maybe not so accidentally. We sat back down and I showed him the sword. He immediately recognized it as a goblin forged weapon and the curse as goblin made too. He said it was beyond his power to remove the curse, even if he had use of his wand.
I asked "Well who does?"
"Weasley and Potter do, but they're both back in England. But there is one other aspect to this curse, its goblin made. Which means you'll probably going to have to deal with them." he said that last part with a smirk.
When he mentioned goblins, a shiver went up and down my spine. I hated goblins. Nasty, brutish and greedy. If it wasn't for the Accords, I would kill them on principle. You blanch, you must think I'm crazy but have you met a goblin? Spend any time with them? Three solid weeks with them would be enough to change anyone's mind. Now because of the Accords, the goblins cannot attack me or anyone in the Council. What are the Accords you ask? Oh a very old peace agreement between the Council and various magical creatures like goblins, centaurs and elves. Who is the Council? Let's just say that because we exist you exist. Now where was I? Oh yes, goblins and loopholes, we forgot to include significant others on the Accord allowing for this attack on my husband. So this is where we stand: my husband is in a coma due to a goblin curse and I can't do anything about it. Can you?
Hermione was moved by the woman's story but was unsure what she could do for her. Yet there were lots of questions that went unanswered in her tale. Like what did she mean 'before she died again', who this mysterious Council was, why Zabini recognized her and most importantly "How did you find me?" She blurted that last one out loud.
She gave her a watery smile "You were in the phone book. I couldn't find Potter but Weasley was in the phone book. So I took a chance that you were the witchy Weasleys, seeing as how you're the only in the book."
"Oh well. I would need to see the sword" Hermione said.
The woman bent down and reached into her bag, pulled out the sword and handed it to Hermione. Then, all of a sudden she jumped up, "Um, Mrs.
Weasley, I suddenly don't feel so well. Do you have a bathroom?"
"Sure, it's just down the hall to your left." Hermione replied with concern.
"I'll help you find it" She made to get up but found her daughter back downstairs helping Mrs. Summers-Miller up. She watched speechless as her daughter helped this strange young woman. She really needed to have a serious talk with that after that woman left.
I came quickly down the stairs as soon as I felt the monster lady's pain. Mummy was surprised to see me but the monster lady needed me. I was by her side and helped her to her up. From the way mummy was looking at me I knew I would have to tell her everything. Grownups are funny that way. I led the monster lady to the bathroom. She then threw up in the toilet, it was very icky. But I gave her a towel to wipe her face. She thanked me and sighed.
"Ya know, kiddo, you shouldn't be like this yet. You're not ready for my world. Maybe in about six or seven years..."
"But you need my Mummy's help."
"Yes, but I didn't call you. I purposely tamped down on the calling. Even when I first recognized you, I dismissed you. You're mum isn't ready for our world yet and you're not old enough."
"But I want to be strong now. I don't want to wait. What if the monsters attack mummy & dad?" I argued.
The monster lady smiled at me and bent down and stroked my face "Sweetie, the monsters won't attack you or your family. You're hidden from them. If I were to make you strong before you're old enough then you become unhidden and then monsters will get you. You must not say you're ready to be strong yet. You must promise me that. I will come back after all this mess with my husband is cleared up and talk with your mum and we will set up a schedule for these things to happen"
I pouted, I changed my mind and now I wanted to be strong. I didn't want to wait. I wanted to help the monster lady.
Buffy was in a panic. She came to this house to find a cure for Graham. Maybe this Hermione could help her, but she didn't expect to find a hidden potential there. She thought she had the situation under control by sending out her strongest suggestion to the girl, who couldn't be older than 6 that she didn't want to be strong yet. But the girl was very strong willed. She shook off every signal that Buffy sent the girl. There was reason she didn't visit young potentials: they were attracted to her like moths to a flame. That was how Gina became her ward. It was supposed to be a simple meet and greet with the parents of a nine year old girl who was identified as a potential. Except the girl kept following Buffy around to the point of distraction. The little girl's parents were not happy about their daughter becoming a Slayer and seeing the girl's attraction to Buffy decided to disown the little girl as an abomination to their religion.
They turned the little girl out soon after Buffy had left them. Gina had literally followed her home, not an easy task on the streets of Rome, but somehow she managed it.
Buffy was surprised to find the little girl on her doorstep. When Buffy went back to try to find the girl's parents, it was if they hadn't existed. Somehow they had managed to disappear off the face of the earth leaving Buffy no choice but to take the girl in. But back to the here and now, she knew Rose's parents wouldn't give her up, she just needed this little girl to see logic. Now only if she could get her stomach to cooperate.
Hermione watched warily as her daughter and Mrs. Summers-Miller returned. She had a strong suspicion about what was wrong with the woman but no idea about the curse on the sword. She would contact Bill and maybe Harry too after the woman left. For now, she would do her diagnosis of the woman and make sure she gets a copy of those Accords as she was sure the answer about the curse was located in those Accords. She also didn't know what was up with her daughter. One minute she was a normal five year old girl the next she is hanging on that woman like she was her mum and not her.
"You're back. Are you feeling any better?" she asked Mrs. Summers-Miller.
"A little, I don't know what's come over me. These past few weeks I've been way out of sorts. I can't seem to keep anything down, my hormones have been raging and I seem to have dizzy spells at the oddest times." She replied as she settled herself back down on the couch.
"I have an idea about what's wrong with you. If you'll let me, I can do a diagnostic spell on you. I have taken some basic healer courses."
"Ok, I guess so. Though I think Rose should probably leave the room."
She glanced over at Rose, who nervously playing with her hands.
"But, mummy..." Rose protested
"I agree. Rose, go upstairs and read your storybook." Hermione ordered.
Rose pouted but did not put up anymore protest. She glanced once more at Mrs. Summers-Miler.
"It's okay, sweetie. Your mum is just going to check me over like a doctor would."
Reassured, Rose bolted up the stairs without another word. Hermione though was seething. Buffy noticed this and tried to reassure without telling her the real reason. "Hermione, please don't be angry at me or her. I have this affinity with young, petulant girls. My ten year old ward acts much the same way."
Hermione was slightly mollified. She would try to get a better explanation after her diagnosis. Rose didn't usually act this way. She took out her wand and saw Buffy eye it warily. "Don't worry; I am only going to diagnose you with this." She waved her wand in several complicated motions. The spell confirmed what she suspected.
"Well, what's the verdict?" Buffy asked.
"You're pregnant." Hermione replied. At which the other woman fainted dead away. Of course that's when all hell broke loose in the house. Rose and Hugo decided that this would be a good time for a row with both children accusing the other of starting the fight. The 'Enervate' charm failed to work on the woman and Hermione lacked smelling salts and to top it all off Ron came home early from practice just to add to the madness of the house. Hermione was ready to scream.
Ron noticed the woman passed out on the couch and asked "Who's the bird?" Then he noticed the sword on the table. He went to pick it up. "Cool sword."
"Don't touch it! It's cursed." Hermione admonished.
"Is that why the strange woman is passed out on our couch? Because she touched the sword and activated the curse?" Ron asked.
"No, she didn't touch the sword, her husband did."
"Then why is she passed out on our couch?"
"Because she fainted when I told her she was pregnant."
Ron considered this for a moment and the asked "Did you try to revive her?"
"Of course I did, Ronald. It didn't work."Hermione said with exasperation "that's why she still lying on our couch."
Ron was confused now, "How could it not work? It works on Muggle as well as witches and wizards. Are you sure you did the spell right?"
Hermione glared at him.
"Right, I'll just go upstairs and sort out Rose and Hugo." He quickly cleared out of the room and ran up the stairs. To exasperate the matter further, the flue started up and her sister-in-law poked her head through the flames.
"Hello Hermione, is this a good time?"
"No, Ginny it is not a bloody well good time!" Hermione yelled back through the flames.
Ginny, chastened, her head receding from the fireplace. Before she could completely remove her head, Hermione called out after her "Wait, Gin, I am sorry. I'm just having a really bad day. Oh and you wouldn't happen to have any smelling salts?"
She didn't but it didn't matter for soon after she finished flue call with Ginny, the woman began to revive on her own. She watched as the woman's eyes fluttered and she slowly raised herself off the couch. Hermione quickly went to her side to help her.
"Did you catch the plate number on that semi?" The woman quipped while holding her head. She turned to Hermione and asked quietly "Pregnant, right?"
Hermione nodded "Are you sure?"
"Fairly sure. Though you might want to check with a proper doctor. Or even use one of those little kits that you pee on."
"Well this complicates things. So sword, you figure that out yet?"
"No, not as yet. But rest assured Mrs. -"
"Buffy, call me Buffy. After all, it wouldn't do to be so formal after I passed out on your couch."
"Right, Buffy, I will do everything that I can to help break this curse. Although it might help if I had a copy of those Accords."
"I can arrange that. I'll have Giles messenger over a copy right away.
Here's my card, sorry it hasn't been corrected to show my new name but the number will get me either way. Oh and one more thing, if Rose asks you if it's ok for her to be strong, tell her not quite yet. Goodbye Hermione, I know you'll figure it out." She handed Hermione a card, surprised her with a quick hug and then exited the house. Leaving behind a slightly gob-smacked Hermione staring out after her, pondering her strange advice about her daughter.