Disclaimer: Surprisingly, neither the characters of BtVS or the
themes of 'Scion' belong to me. Instead, they seem to belong to Jos
Wheadon and White Wolf, which seems very unfair to me.
Rating: MA15+(mostly for violence, language and occasional sex)
Spoilers: Beginning of Season Three for BtVS, just background info
The Harris house was quiet. The television was the only sound, softly replaying the football game that Tony’s team had lost. The man himself was dozing, slumped in his chair, half-empty beer can still clutched in one meaty fist. Balding with a face unshaven for days, there was little left of the Captain of the Razorbacks he had been in his youth.
And it was this that Sif saw as she ghosted into the living room that evening, moments after leaving her son. Her eyes widened, and she strode over to kneel by his Tony’s chair, and sighed as she reached up to hold a hand near his face. “Oh, Anthony. I am so, so very sorry. I should have found some way, some way to stay here with you and our son … I wish so very much that I could have.”
She leaned in close, and kissed him gently on the cheek. “My blessing, husband. Find happiness, and peace. Together we have bred a mighty warrior, and through him, and those like him, this world, and more, may be saved.”
The goddess rose to her feet, her skirt swishing about her ankles. “And perhaps, one day, you will forgive me.”
She faded from the world, and all was quiet again. Then Tony shifted, grunted, and whispered, “Jess,” and shifted again.
And for the first time in years, Anthony Harris slept soundly, as he began to heal.
*** *** ***
Xander’s head was whirling with thoughts as he strode down the street. His mother had come back from the dead, only to name herself a Norse goddess and him of divine blood. For someone who had long since resigned himself to being a looser in some minimum-wage job, uneducated and powerless, the prospects of divinity were daunting, to say the least.
So, he did what he always did when he couldn’t handle something by himself.
He went to see his Willow.
*** *** ***
Willow looked up at the tapping on her window. “Xander!” she exclaimed, lowering the screen of her new laptop, setting it aside and jumping off her bed. Rushing over to the window, she pulled it open and gestured for her best-friend to enter.
“Hey, Will. Sorry to barge in on you tonight,” he apologised, scrambling through the window.
“Hey, you’re always welcome, Xan, you know that. Especially with Buffy … unavailable, us Scoobies gotta stick together, right?”
He grinned, before glancing around. “I gotta tell you, Will, tonight’s been a little stranger than the norm, even for Sunnydale, and I needed to talk to someone about it, so here I am.”
Flopping down onto the bed, Willow sighed. “Xander, no matter what, I can guarantee
you that I can top you.”
“Oh yeah? Alrighty then, Miss ‘I can top you’ - and by the way, I’m not
touching the possible implications of that
statement - let me tell you the tale of …” He drifted off. “Will? Why do you have a sword on your desk?”
“Er, you see - look, Xan, you’re not going to believe me!”
He looked reproachfully at her. “Will, we nightly battle the forces of evil to save mankind! Believe me, after tonight, I’m just about ready to believe anything.”
Willow buried her face in her hands.
After a moment of silence, Willow parted her fingers and risked a look up, only so see Xander standing there with a bemused look on his face. “What? You don’t believe me?”
He shook his head, his expression turning into a trademark, lopsided grin that did things to her insides that weren’t supposed to happen now that she was in a relationship with Oz. “Willow, I told
you, my night was really
weird,” he said, reaching down towards his left hip. Willow squeeked in shock as a formerly invisible sword shimmered into being belted to his waist, and he smoothly drew it, revealing a length of shining steel blade. “A present from my not-so-dead mother, Lady Sif of the Norse pantheon.”
Willow’s eyes widened. “Wow.”
*** *** ***
Hephaestus stood on the cliff overlooking the seemingly-innocent town that his latest Scion inhabited. He smiled at the memory of his Willow’s steadfast determination to continue the fight, to defend her town, the world and her friends. Man, I wish there were more like her,
he mused. Most of the time, his children - and those of his kin, so he heard - needed to be convinced, persuaded, needled or pushed into taking up the fight. With Willow, it seemed that it would require great effort to make her stop
He felt the presence behind him, but didn’t turn around. “Hey, Goldilocks. I thought I felt someone else hanging about tonight.”
The tall, golden-haired goddess chuckled throatily as she strode up beside him, and joined him in his perusal of Sunnydale. “A little family business to attend to. I trust it is the same with you?”
He nodded. “I met my daughter tonight. She’s … amazing. Just incredible. Brilliant, of course, but a heart the size of Olympus! Of course, she’s already involved in the fight, so it took very little effort to enlist her aid.”
Sif smiled. “It seems both of our children have more fight than sense,” she joked, then chuckled at his questioning expression. “Oh, yes, I’ve known your Willow since she was five: the mark of your blood was impossible to miss.”
Understanding dawned. “Ah. Alexander, of course. A fine quality of ore, if I may be so bold.”
Sif nodded. “You may. And to continue the metaphor, I am very happy with the way the tempering is proceeding. I hope that with my Visitation, he may have gained the confidence he needed.”
“Still, good leaders need good servants,” observed Hephaestus. “Fate will surely bind some excellent mortals to their destiny, of course, but I feel that being placed on the Hellmouth, our children may need a little extra help.”
“Agreed. And I have some ideas - if you will allow me?”
“Of course, my Lady.” Together, the Gods joined their minds, and Sif cast her senses over the city of Sunnydale, and focused on several mortals. “Oh, yes,” the smith chuckled, “This should help matters along nicely!”
*** *** ***
Xander spend the night at Willow’s place, and they enjoyed a late breakfast together. Fortunately, Willow’s mother and step-father were out of town on a lecture tour, and had left Willow to her own devises, which was not an uncommon occurrence. “It’d be flattering if it didn’t hurt,” she admitted over pancakes. “They trust me to be on my own, but don’t seem to care that we hardly ever see one another.”
They spent much of the day pouring over the files Hephaestus had left on her laptop, trying to learn as much about their heritage and nature as possible. Fortunately, Hephaestus had included all sorts of data, from detailed descriptions of the various pantheons and the major players therein, to detailed files on the abilities that scions were capable of developing, known as ‘Boons’ and what amounted to a ‘Monstrous Manual’ of titan spawn, although clearly incomplete and somewhat out of date.
They also learned about the gifts that their divine parents had given them, referred to in the texts as ‘relics. These seemed to fill in for the stereotypical magical items of RPG fame, from enchanted swords to cars that never needed gasoline, as well as providing other, more esoteric advantages.
“So we have to have these relics in order to use most Boons,” observed Willow, seated at the kitchen table, concentrating on the laptop in front of her. “Your bracer should let you channel the purviews - that is, groups of Boons - of Guardian and Healing. Without it, you can’t. It‘s the same with my sword, and the Fire Purview - I can use those powers when I have my rapier, but take it away, and I can‘t touch them.”
“Sounds kinda dumb to me,” observed Xander from behind her, handing a mug of hot chocolate to Willow, then leaning against the bench top to savour his own. “So if we loose these things,” he tapped the bracer strapped to his left arm, “we’re basically average, everyday mortals again?”
She smiled, and looked back over her shoulder. “Not exactly. We’ve still got the extra oomph - you know, superhuman strength and speed and stuff. Plus that’s only for most Boons. Each pantheon has a specific Purview that‘s unique, and we don‘t need relics to access those. But to talk to talk to animals or fly and stuff, we’d need appropriate relics. I think its that we’re still too human. We couldn’t handle the power on our own, so our parents use these relics as a sort of buffer, so we can use them safely. Eventually, we’ll become powerful enough to use the power directly.” She frowned. “Does it bother you that we’re talking about not being human anymore?”
Xander grabbed a chair and sat next to Willow. “Sorta. Mostly I’m still kinda numb. I mean, hey! Mom’s alive - sort of - and she wasn’t even human to begin with! Which means that really, I was never completely human, I just didn’t realise it. Maybe when it really hits me I’ll feel different, but until it does, I am Xander, and that’s all that matters.” He paused. “Does that make sense?”
“Yeah. I just feel a little … charged up. I feel strong, and that’s not normal, ‘cause I’m so not athletogirl.” She smiled. “I guess we’ll see what happens when we go patrolling tonight, right?”
He grinned back, again awakening the forbidden butterflies in her stomach.
*** *** ***
Cordelia Chase was not having a good night. Having just returned to Sunnydale from her vacation, she had decided to spend the night at the Bronze re-cementing her place over the sheep (er, fellow popular girls). After a few hours, and with the rest of the gaggle put firmly in their place, she and Harmony had ducked out to visit the ladies room.
And were promptly grabbed by a group of vampires.
Cordelia, due to her association with the Scoobies and her ‘relationship’ - even in her own head, she still didn’t quite believe that she was really dating Harris of all people - with Xander, knew exactly how much trouble she was in.
“Gah! What the hell do you thing you’re doooing! Get off me, you freak! Hey, what, you got rabies or something? Let gooo!”
Harmony, however, did not.
“Heh, this one’s got a mouth on her,” giggled one of the vamps, a tall, skinny dweeb with long straggly hair. He easily controlled Harmony’s struggling body with an arm across her chest with a strength that belied his wiry frame.
“Yeah, but she won’t for long,” came the second, a blond girl in black leather and chains in a sing-song voice.
“Yep,” announced the third, who had a good grip on Cordelia’s upper arm. Unlike his companions, he was well-groomed and clothed, looking like one of the well-to-do boys Cordelia’s mother always wanted her to meet. “Guess what, girls? It‘s dinner time - and you‘re desert! Isn‘t that great?” Crap! I gonna get eaten! By a
Sunnydale vampire! Couldn’t they wait ‘til I got to LA?
“Let them go, fang-face,” came a confident voice from the mouth of the alley. Jerking her head, Cordelia’s eyes widened as she saw Xander and Willow standing between the vamps and the street. Double crap! Now either I get rescued by the dweeb-and-dweeber, or we all get killed.
I just wish I knew which option was worse.
Preppy-vamp grinned. “Looks like someone wants to play hero, guys!”
“Oh, hell, it’s the freak squad,” complained Harmony. “Like, call the freaking cops or something!”
Xander and Willow just stood there, confident and relaxed. Numbly, Cordelia noticed that they were better dressed than normal - Harris was wearing dark jeans, a black t-shirt that left his arms mostly bare, bar something on his left wrist, and Willow had dressed in dark slacks and a maroon silk blouse. God, the one time they look
good, and we’re all gonna die!
Skinny twisted her around and shoved her to the ground, and she fell with her back to the brick wall of the alley. “Siddown, bitch. I’ll get back to you,” he growled, and Harmony shrieked as his face twisted, the brow ridges of his kind sprouting and his eyes shining a feral yellow. Turning to the girl vamp, he snarled, “Watch her - I’m getting some snacks!” Grinning at Preppy-vamp, he stalked forwards, heading for the teens. What the hell, Xander? Get the fuck outta here! Get Willow out!
Instead, Xander and Willow simply exchanged glances, and grinned at each other.
*** *** ***
The vampire finally reached them and leapt forwards, arms outstretched. Grab the girl - the boy’ll stay to be a hero. Eat them both.
He was a predator, stronger and faster than any human, designed to hunt and kill. No pair of teenagers was even the slightest threat to him.
Which was why it was so surprising that the boy smiled, leaned back, and snapped a kick into his jaw, sending the vampire spinning backwards to land solidly on the concrete. Dazed and a little confused, he tried to get up again, levering himself up with his elbows. When I get my hands on that blood bag,
he thought angrily, before the redhead knelt down on one knee next to him and smoothly thrust a wooden stake through his heart.
*** *** ***
Cordelia gaped as the twin geeks dusted the first vampire with contemptuous ease.
Preppy snarled, and jerked his head at biker-girl, before shoving Cordelia down next to Harmony. “Sit! Stay!” he growled, before turning to join his female companion.
Harmony clutched at Cordelia’s arm, pressing herself against the brunette girl. Instead of annoyance, her eyes now shone with horror and fear. Which, Cordelia had to admit somewhat absently, was a change from the vapid confusion and smug ignorance that were Harmony’s normal emotions. “What the hell is going on?”
Cordy had to admit, she really didn’t know. Vampires, yes, she was familiar with. But Xander and Willow
This was truly
*** *** ***
Willow rose back to her feet as the two remaining vamps started towards her. She felt Xander move to her side, and smiled. In the past, slaying had been painful and horrifying. Without the power of a Slayer, the merely human teens were ill-equipped to fight vampires on their own terms. Despite the knowledge that what they were doing was necessary, Willow had looked towards each night with a mixture of dread and resignation.
Tonight had been fun
She and Xander had already killed three vampires that night - two fledglings that they caught rising from their graves, and one on the way to the cemetery. At first, she had been apprehensive, even scared, wondering if it had all been a mistake. Could she really have the power her father had suggested that she possessed?
Working together with flawless precision, she and Xander had dispatched their opponents with ease. While her physical enhancements were less pronounced than Xander’s, she seemed to be almost as strong, and where once she was unable to make a vampire even notice her attacks, now her tiny fists struck with enormous power.
The mouse had become a lion.
They had intended to meet Oz at the Bronze, and reveal their new natures to him, but had instead found Cordelia returned from holiday, and Harmony, being menaced by three vampires.
Well, two, now.
The female vampire lunged at Willow, hands outstretched. Vamps always want to grapple - if you let them close with you, their unnatural strength would overwhelm you, and that’d be all she wrote
, Willow thought, as she caught the vampire’s wrists, her hands inches from her throat, and squeezed. The distorted face of the vampire twisted again, this time in confusion, then pain, as Willow’s divinely-enhanced fingers clamped down on the undead creature’s wrists. The girly-vamp howled as Willow pulled their arms out to the sides, moving their torsos closer together, and slammed her forehead into the vamp’s nose with far more force than should have been possible.
Letting go, she let the vamp stumble back, who was torn between cradling her broken wrists and her shattered nose, Willow winced and touched one hand to her temple. One thing watching Buffy never taught me: head butting someone
hurts! Shaking her head, she looked up just in time to duck under a clumsy swipe from the vampire, who while having crushed wrists was still able to use her forearms as clubs. Rage, it seemed, was enough to overcome pain - at least for a while.
Straightening again, Willow snapped a straight left jab into the face of her opponent, and found the spray of stolen blood and broken teeth spurting from the creature’s mouth as she fell back oddly satisfying. Not letting up the pressure, she stepped forwards, following the staggering vamp, and threw herself into a thundering right cross, knocking the vamp down to the ground with the sound of broken bone.
The vampire scrambled backwards, trying to get away from the redhead, but Willow pursued relentlessly, pulling the stake again from her belt. Willow could see, despite the darkness of the alley, the look of confusion, anger, and terror on the creature’s distorted face, the horror in those yellow eyes. At that moment, Willow could understand the look that sometimes came over Buffy’s face mid-slay, when she that she was going to win, and the demon was going to loose.
Reaching down, she grabbed girly-vamp by the hair and yanked her upright. “You know, I’ve spent the last year being afraid of you. You know what?” she asked the whimpering vampire, her head cocking to one side slightly, “I’m not afraid anymore.”
The vamp screamed as Willow staked her. I could get to liking this,