Close Encounters of the Strange Kind
Disclaimer: Character's belong to Joss, Melinda, Jason and UPN. No infringement intended.
Summary: Dawn makes a new friend, he's special and he's not from around here.
Challenge by: inquisitive1
Challenge: Zan (Max's dupe from Roswell) shows up in Sunnydale.
Dawn and Zan become friends
Buffy and Spike become suspicious.
Weird things happen and they find out about Zan and Zan finds out about them.
Close Encounters of the Strange Kind
"No." Buffy shook her head and pointed to the table full of school books. "No patroling on a school night. I don't know what Willow and Tara were thinking... letting you go on patrol at all."
"Spike always looks out for me." Dawn begged.
"Do your homework! You're fifteen. Do your homework, be normal. I'm patroling." Buffy huffed and grabbed Mr. Pointy. She was out the door before she could hear Dawn's mutterings.
"I'm not normal." Dawn crossed her arms and scowled.
"She's only looking out for you, Dawn." Giles' voice made her turn. He had his glasses in hand, wiping them with a hankerchief. "It's not safe out there and you're all she has."
"But I'm not real. Remember?" Dawn stomped up the stairs. They had been over it many times. She was Dawn Summers. She was a real girl. She could bleed, she could die, she could open up the barriers between all dimensions and destroy all of creation. "Normal, my ass."
Dawn stormed past the room that Willow and Tara had claimed. She ignored the giggles issuing from it and slammed the door to her own room. She just stood there. It wasn't real. It wasn't her. Who had programmed her personality? She had pink sheets. Pink sheets! What fifteen year old girl had pink sheets? Or pink curtains... flapping in the breeze of an open window.
A devious smirk crossed her face when she leaned over to turn on her stereo to some angry, sappy music. That would be the clue everyone needed to leave her alone for the night. Then she grabbed her jacket. What fifteen year old girl didn't sneak out of the house every now and again?
Dawn had to be careful. She stuffed pillows beneath the blankets just in case someone came checking. Lights had to be off if they were going to be confused enough to fall for it. She slid out the window and braced her feet on the roof while she turned carefully. Making sure the window was open slightly, she started her descent. Careful. Don't slide off the roof. Into the tree, through the branches, slow all the way to the ground. Maybe she had a little more of the Slayer than they thought in her genes.
She glanced around and then sped for the cover of the bushes. She kept to the shadows until she was 12 blocks away where she tripped over a rise in the sidewalk. It was too late to call up the friends and set up a rondeveuz but she could always sneak into the Bronze. The shadows covered her well until she reached her destination. The Bronze was packed, the perfect place to get lost in.
The music pumped, vibrating through her body. Grooving her way through the crowd, Dawn nodded to people she saw from school. Then she ran smack into a dangerous looking guy. Eyes wide, she backed away from his glare only to run into two more. "Sorry."
"What's a pretty little thing like you doing all by herself?" One leered at her.
"Hey." Another voice caught her attention. The first scary guy she had run into was glaring over her head. "She's a kid. Leave her lone."
"Who're you?" The other set of scary guys stepped forward.
"Does it matter?" He raised a pierced eyebrow and pulled Dawn towards him. "Me and the kid's gonna take a walk. Don't be here when I get back." He wrapped an arm around her shoulders and started walking without a glance back at the other guys or down at his newly saved charge. "Kid, I have a feelin' you know better."
"Look. You got any friends here, you go tell 'em to beat it." He shoved her toward a group of kids from school. Dawn did as told and spread the word that something was going on. She took it upon herself to be the last out to make sure everyone else got out.
Just as she was making her way out, a hand grabbed her arm. "Look what we got here. It's the pretty little thing." The hand swung her around to the face of a demon. "Who's your friend, little girl?"
"Friend? What friend? I don't have any friends." Dawn smiled nervously. "I'm going home now."
"No. You're going to stay here with us. You scared off our meal." The demon shook his head and clucked his tongue.
"Kid." The scary guy with the piercings made his way over. "I told ya to leave."
"I was going to but..." She trailed off when he grabbed her other arm and shoved the demon so hard she knew it was unnatural.
"Run. Don't look back." He ordered and shoved her toward the door. She didn't think twice, she just ran. All the while she could feel his hand on her back urging her faster. Eight blocks away, she tripped over a rise in the sidewalk. Cursing, he grabbed her and took off down an alley with her clutched to his chest. Suddenly he stopped running and knelt down. Thrusting her to the ground he reached down and pried a sewage cover off. "Get down there."
Dawn didn't even had time to react before he had pushed her down the manhole and had landed on the dank bottom. He hung from the opening while he pulled the cover back closed and then hopped to the floor. He pulled her to her feet and rushed down a few tunnels before shoving her into a niche in the wall. He stepped in behind her and motioned for her to be quiet.
Her wide blue eyes ran over his grungy appearance. From his greasy spikes, over his piercings and tattoos to his worn clothes. She thought she saw a pair of tire tracks across them when he turned slightly. This guy was not from Sunnydale. "Who are you?"
His head snapped around to her as though he had just remembered that she was there. His amber eyes ran over her hair and preppy clothes. "Who're you?"
"Dawn Summers." Her voice sounded so small next to his deep one.
"I'm Zan." He nodded stiffly to her. "Those guys followed you into the Bronze. Know why?"
She shook her head.
"You special or somethin'? They's gunnin' for you." Zan sank to his knees.
"I don't know what they want. I... I have to go tell my sister..." She trailed off and she wanted to kick herself. "If... if they know who I am, they know who my sister is. We have to warn her. She's out patroling and if they find her..."
"Chill. We ain't goin' nowhere until it's all clear." He raked his eyes over her again. "What are you 14?"
"15." She scoffed lightly. Then she turned her blue eyes down to the dirty ground and sank down to sit next to him. "Were they really following me?"
"I's seen you come in and then I sees them come in. Then they starts makin' trouble." He shut his eyes.
"Why did you help me?"
"I's got a baby sister. I ain't there for her and I hope someone's lookin' out for the bitch." Zan muttered, ignoring her gasp at his attitude toward his sister. "If I cain't be there, I want someone to be. You remind a little of her when she was younger."
"I... kinda snuck out tonight. My sister thinks I'm at home... so does everyone else." Dawn sheepishly admitted. "Giles is going to be so mad when he finds out."
"Ain't nothin' wrong with sneakin' out... I think... I ain't never had to report to no one." Zan stretched his legs out in front of him, still keeping an ear out for movement in the dark sewers. "I ain't got no one. Thought I'd check out Cali and see how that is."
"You like it? I mean, where are you from?"
"I's from New York, yo. City just got too cramped, ya know? Figure I could chill it out here." He ran a hand through his spikes. "That club the only action round here?"
"Legally, anyway. If you want to chill, Sunnydale isn't the place for it." Dawn warned softly. "The night life is a bit... lively."
"No. I mean... if you aren't from around here, you wouldn't understand. Things like what happned up at the Bronze aren't exactly unusual." She whispered, afraid that talking about the demons would make them appear. "It's not at all calm at night. Not like it is during the day."
"It's cool. I'll stick it out." Zan stood. "Let's get you home. I think they's gone."