Title: Things in Common
Fandoms: XxxHolic, BtVS
Notes: Takes place sometime before xxxHolic volume 15 and post BtVS Season 6. This is a small vignette that has little to do with the main plotlines of either xxxHolic or Buffy.
Disclaimer: I am neither a man nor a collective of four Japanese women. Thus, these characters do not belong to me.
The woman was tall and slender, like a young tree; but Tara knew she wasn't. She was old, powerful; magic swirled in the air around her, through her eyes and between the long black strands of her hair. Tara drifted closer, curious and fascinated, unable to resist the magnetic pull.
The woman turned to look at her, and her eyes were cool at first. Red glass. Tara ducked her head a little. She had gained some confidence in herself, but here she was shy. It was only a small way, on a street in a modern Japanese city, but Tara had had so few reasons to feel shy that she almost didn't recognize the sensation at first.
"Why are you following me?" the woman asked. Tara shifted uncomfortably.
"You're the first person I've seen who can see me," she said at last. "And...your aura...."
The coolness melted a little as the woman looked at her. Tara felt almost as though the woman could look straight through her.
"You were a witch," the woman said, and Tara smiled shyly.
"I wasn't as powerful as you are," she said. "Not even after I died."
The woman studied her a moment longer, and then gave her a gentle smile. "Would you like to come have tea with me?" she asked, and extended a gloved hand. Tara took it gingerly.
"You're a lot more solid than I expected," she said. The woman laughed a little, deep and low enough to make Tara's memories stir.
"It's a long story," she said. "You may call me Yuuko."