Title: Girl's Best FriendAuthor:
Right, I actually went and checked to be sure this time… Buffy the Vampire Slayer
, Angel: the Series
, and all associated characters belong to Fran and Kaz Kuzui. With a myriad of writers, artists, and editors, actual rights are a nightmare when you go near a comic book universe. Suffice it to say that Marvel Entertainment LLC owns all of the property printed in their comics, along with the television and movie adaptations of said same property. Not mine, don't sue, and so forth and so on.Summary:
During the events of 'Chosen', Kennedy undergoes a transition that has nothing to do with being a Slayer…Joe's Note:
Behold! It's another visitor from /users/joe/Documents/Stories/Inactive or Dead. The seed for this dates back to December 2008. Mostly because it served as a setup for a 'Kennedy in Ultimate Marvel' story… and then everything went to shit on Earth-1610 and I gave up on the entire universe in disgust. But looking at some of my existing stories (*cough*Ignition
and Behind the Throne
*cough*), I figured out how to retool it into something useful and resurrect it. There are obviously some spoilers here for pieces that still need to come, but just… have a little faith, yeah?
The girl the others knew solely as Kennedy leaned back against the school bus they'd commandeered for their last, desperate flight out of Sunnydale as she listened to the others talk. She couldn't hear the entire conversation; at this distance, it would take Slayer hearing to pick up their normal speaking voices on a day with a good breeze and a bunch of teenagers milling in and around the bus talking.
Unfortunately for her, she didn't have Slayer hearing. Or any other Slayer power.
But even though she couldn't hear what was being said, she was able to guess well enough. 'What next?' She knew that for Xander and Willow, the last seven years had been spent in Sunnydale fighting evil. Giles had done so for even longer, and Faith had been through a lot in her five year career as a Slayer. It was probably time for a break… but it was like when you retired after working somewhere for thirty years. Where did you go from there?
There was a spike of pain in her left forearm and Kennedy glanced down, screwing up her face in disgust as a bulge appeared under her skin, moving back and forth like some sort of creature trying to break free. What the fuck? She'd been very careful to avoid the Turok-Han while bringing the scythe to Faith and the newly empowered Slayers under the school, so it likely wasn't anything demonic. But if it wasn't anything demonic… then what was it?
The bump moved to the outside of her arm and with a sick squelching noise, a spine made of some unknown crystalline pink substance slid out of her flesh. Kennedy's eyes widened as she stared at it. While her birth mother's transmorph form didn't have spines and was clear… well, her birth mother had a diamond transmorph form to begin with. Was it possible that Willow's spell had inadvertently activated her secondary mutation instead of turning her into a Slayer?
Kennedy reached out with her mind, searching for her mother's presence, but the pervasive buzzing of the Hellmouth had still yet to fade and she couldn't even cross the few yards to Willow, much less across the country to New York. Fuck. She didn't want the others to know about her, but given that Giles was her only link to either her adoptive parents or her birth mother, she didn't really have a choice. Taking a step toward him, Kennedy grimaced and collapsed to her knees as hot spikes of pain sprung up all through her body. "Giles!"
"What… oh my." Kennedy heard more than saw as the group's sole Watcher came running her way as she remained crouched on the ground, the rest of the 'Scoobies' not far behind. "My word, Kennedy, are you all right? If you were hurt, you should have said something before and we would have-"
Shaking her head violently, Kennedy wanted to correct him but found herself unable to speak as pain continued to wrack her body. One after another, three further spines erupted from the outside of her arm before her right arm received a matching set, then spiky growths began to grow from her knuckles. All pink, which left Kennedy wondering exactly what she was turning into. Her mother was diamond… was she too a diamond transmorph if she was pink?
With the new growth apparently finished, all that was left was for her flesh to transmute. And it did, starting at the tips of her fingers and bleeding up over her hands, the change then traveling along her arms to her chest and leaving pink gemstone in its wake. It split in both directions at that point, moving simultaneously up to cover her head and hair as well as down her torso, over her hips, and then down her legs. The pain abruptly vanished and Kennedy remained on the ground for a further second before uncurling and rising to her feet.
The pain wasn't the only thing missing, she realized. So was most sensation, but it was the pain that mattered the most and so Kennedy wasn't worried about the… well, it was more of a numb state, really. She could feel everything, just not very well. But since touch seemed to be the only sense affected, it wasn't too big a deal. How much would she be touching in her new diamond form?
Looking over her spiny pink arms, Kennedy ignored the whispers of the others. Until she got a proper look at her new form and could reply with something informed, it wasn't worth saying anything. If there was one thing her mother and her mom agreed on, it was that it was better to be thought a fool than open one's mouth and remove all doubt. So instead, she ignored Faith's suspicious stare and Willow's wide eyes as she turned and walked back over to the bus. The back door had a window at the right height and she could see herself from the waist up… and what a sight it was.
She was most definitely pink, rather than white like her mother's diamond form. A rather inane thought popped into her head: she'd seen a picture of Jennifer Lopez wearing a heart-shaped pink diamond in Cosmo at one point. So being pink didn't necessarily disqualify her from being a diamond. There was another, quite obvious difference between her and her mother: her form was faceted instead of smooth and possessed those wicked-looking arm spines, giving her an almost demonic appearance. Perhaps due to her powers activating while on the Hellmouth? Or being triggered by Willow's mystical intervention, instead of by nature?
Raising one arm, Kennedy let her eyes roam down the row of short spines that ran along the outside of her forearm, and then on to the growths on her knuckles. This would definitely be an interesting form to fight vampires in, she mused. "I've got to hand it to you, Willow, you really go all out when you get your girlfriend something. I can only imagine what the anniversary presents are going to be like." Chuckling to herself, Kennedy turned from her self-inspection and found the Scoobies staring at her blankly. Were they serious? The connection there was so easy to make, even Paris Hilton would have gotten it. "You know? Diamonds are a girl's best friend?"
Willow squeaked as she rushed over to her girlfriend, hesitantly running one hand over Kennedy's arm. "You mean… I did this to you?" Kennedy shrugged; while there could have been some completely and totally random reason for her first transformation coming shortly after Willow cast a spell meant to activate superhuman powers in teenage girls, chances were slim that it was anything but her. "Oh! I'm sorry! We got most of the books onto the bus and when we get to LA, Angel has more. Don't worry, we'll have you back to normal in no time and-"
Oh Jesus. That was the last thing she needed: Willow trying to cast more magic that would mess with her DNA. Looking over at Giles, Kennedy sighed and raised an eyebrow. The Watcher took the hint, stepping in before Willow could wind herself up any further. "Willow, I assure you that you're not solely responsible for her situation, and there are no answers to be found in either my books or Wesley's library because there aren't any questions to be asked. Kennedy is… a rather complicated situation."
Kennedy rolled her eyes before turning back to Willow. While she was thankful to Giles for his intervention, it really wasn't that hard to understand. Especially given that Willow was the brains of the operation, meaning she was the most likely to have at least a basic understanding of the Homo sapiens superior
situation. "I'm a mutant."
"Not that complicated, evidently."
"While all mutants have at least one power, which is what sets them apart from flatscans and shapes their post-human identity, some powerful mutants have what's known as a secondary mutation. Sometimes the two are related, and sometimes they aren't. You just saw my secondary mutation." Kennedy looked around, noting that most of the group was still eyeing her warily while Willow appeared to be trying to process what she was being told so she could make informed decisions. So rather than continue to address the group as a whole, Kennedy focused her attention on her girlfriend. "I think it might have been because of your spell. So, technically you didn't do anything to me that wouldn't have happened anyway. Think of it as opening a Christmas present a day early because you get impatient."
Oh yes, because that was the important part of the analogy in this situation. Not. Kennedy sighed and shook her head before amending her statement. "Fine. A Hanukkah present. I'm just saying, I was always going to be able to do this… someday. You just sped things up a bit." Willow didn't look entirely reassured by that and so Kennedy brought her hands up to rest on the redhead's shoulders. "Trust me. My biological mother has the same primary mutation as I do, and can transmorph for a secondary mutation. It was a safe bet that it was coming for me too."
Poking her head out of one of the bus's open windows, Vi grinned wickedly before giving Kennedy a kick while she was already down. "Hey, Kennedy? If that's your secondary form… what's your real mutant power?"
Kennedy looked away from her girlfriend long enough to shoot Vi a withering glare for that one. "I fucking hate you and I hope you get bit by a vampire. A vampire with rabies."
"Payback's a bitch and so am I." Vi folded her arms over her chest, grinning smugly. "Come on, Kennedy. Tell them. Tell them what your powers are."
Scowling, Kennedy jabbed a finger in Vi's direction. "Keep it up and you're going to end up working as one of Miley's backup dancers. I can make it happen." Vi just blew a noisy raspberry in response and Kennedy sighed before turning her attention back to Willow. "Actually, before we go any further…" Trying to remember what her birth mother had shared regarding her own experiences with being a transmorph, Kennedy did her best to fix an image of her normal self in her mind. A pulse of heat spread through her body and she watched the pink diamond smooth and melt away to reveal her tanned flesh. "Ah, there we go. So, where was I?"
Kennedy grimaced. "Oh. Right." This was going to go over like a gay Jewish black man at a Klan rally, she just knew it. "I'm kinda… sorta… an alpha level telepath. I can read minds, project thoughts into them, control people outright, knock people out with psychic grenades… name a bad sci-fi or superhero telepathic cliché, and I can probably do it."
The blood drained from Willow's face and the redhead took a step back. "Did you ever do anything to me? I mean, would I even know if you did anything to my mind because you could just erase this conversation, or erase me knowing you were a telepath and wanting to ask in the first place, or-"
"No, my powers haven't worked since I entered Sunnydale. Something about the Hellmouth blocks them. Otherwise, I would have talked to Giles about revealing myself before the final battle so we could have coordinated ourselves telepathically. Or maybe before the attack on the vineyard." Hell, Kennedy thought, if her powers had been working? They would have been able to gather proper intel and avoid the latter disaster entirely. On the other hand, considering some of the stories she'd heard about Willow's first breakup with Tara… the redhead didn't really have room to talk when it came to mental shenanigans, did she? Not that she'd ever say that out loud; even she wasn't that tactless. Although it did make for a great way to shame Willow into backing away from that train of thought. Closing the distance between them, Kennedy reached up and cupped Willow's face in her hands. "I remember what you told me happened between you and Tara, and I wouldn't have even if I could have. My mother, on the other hand… I've met car salesman and lawyers with more morals than her."
"You keep mentioning her." Willow leaned into Kennedy's touch, gently rubbing her cheek against the brunette's palm as they stared at each other. "Well, you said biological mother once… does that mean you're adopted and know her too?"
Kennedy nodded before grimacing again. While most people who found out the truth about her were suitably awed by her parentage, most people didn't have the tenuous link to Kennedy's mother that would undoubtedly make the coming revelation incredibly awkward. "Condoms are only ninety-nine point nine percent effective, or something like that. My biological mother found that out the hard way when a little tryst with Pedro the Mexican Pool Boy ended up putting a bollo in her oven. Well, I don't know if his name was Pedro or if he was the pool boy because she refuses to talk about my father, but she's very white and I'm half-Mexican so I'm guessing he was one of the servants. Yes, her family was rich enough to have servants and so is she. Anyway, a bastard biracial daughter isn't exactly the kind of thing you can admit to without taking a huge hit socially. Not to mention that she was only a year or two out of college and just starting up her own company… it was the worst possible time for her. So one day, she was sitting there in a meeting and poking around in peoples' minds the way she loves to… and she discovered a particularly juicy secret about one of her business associates. She used it to blackmail the family into a mutually beneficial arrangement: she'd keep her mouth shut and send them some money to offset the cost of raising me and in return, they would raise me and give me a public face until she was cou-"
Bouncing up and down, Dawn clapped her hands together. "I get it! I've always wondered about your name… whether you're like Nymphadora Tonks or if your parents were just crazy enough to name you Kennedy. It's the first one. Your mother gave you to the Kennedys, didn't she?"
"Probably none of the ones you've heard of, but yes. They weren't related to the big political names… well, not directly. Second or third cousins. But they were wealthy enough, and my mother's money made them even richer. As for my mother…" Kennedy slid her hand into her pocket, pulling out her wallet and fishing out her driver's license. Not the fake one she used to buy booze, or the one she'd gotten after receiving a motorcycle as a sweet sixteen present from her adoptive parents. Her real one. Taking a deep breath, she held it out to Willow. "Take a guess."
"Charisse Hazel Frost." Willow looked from the license to Kennedy and back rapidly. "As in..?"
"Emma Frost? Yeah. That's my mom."
"Well. Isn't that just fantastic. That makes you Tara's… wait a minute. You're seventeen?" The card tumbled from Willow's hands as she began to wring them frantically. "Oh Goddess. Oh Goddess. That's statutory rape in California. And we don't have a close in age exception or anything. I've been having sex with my ex-girlfriend's jailbait step-daughter. I'm going to hell or prison or a prison in hell or…" Trailing off, Willow's eyes rolled back in her head as she fainted, collapsing to the ground with a thump.
Sighing, Kennedy bent down and retrieved her license, slipping it back into her wallet. "Well. She took that better than I was expecting…"