For FFA All I Want For Christmas is a Sister
Disclaimer: I don't own any of them. Joss Whedon and Co. own Willow, Angel and Spike. Laurell K. Hamilton owns Merry and her men. No infringement is intended.
Summary: Willow finds out she was adopted and finds her sister.
A/N: I played with the time lines here a little. I know Merry's father was killed when she was roughly 17, and If I make Willow 21 in this fic that's making Merry several years older than she is in the books. Oh, well. My fic, my prerogative. This is generally set after the first book in the series, before Merry and her men moved into the pool house at Maeve Reed's estate.
Merry rushed around her apartment, struggling to tidy up the room. She was about to meet her sister for the first time ever, and her nerves were shot. Okay, her half-sister, but still, a sibling. There were now two faerie princesses of the Unseelie Court thanks to her father's transgressions with a member of the fey that wasn't Merry's mother. Her sister, born Princess Gliondar according to long buried records, and renamed Willow Rosenberg by her adoptive parents, was coming to visit.
She heard Rhys laughing as she pushed Frost out of her way. She needed to make sure everything was neat as a pin and perfect for this meeting. How was she supposed to do that with all of her guards standing around, staring at her like she'd lost her mind? Merry stopped dusting the coffee table for the third time to glower at her men.
"You could help, you know?"
"Merry," Rhys chortled, "the apartment is clean as a whistle. Galen's making those little sandwiches you like so much and brewing a nice soothing tea." Her shortest guard reached for, and pulled her stiff body into his arms, cuddling her close in an attempt to soothe her frazzled nerves. "Everything's going to be fine. You'll see. She'll love you. How could she not?"
Wrapping her arms around Rhys' waist, Merry sighed deeply and took comfort in his contact. "I just want everything to be perfect. It's not every day you find out you've got a long lost sister. I hope she's nice. She seemed nice on the phone."
"She was very polite, indeed." Doyle agreed, but frowned slightly. He'd taken the initial phone call. "Your sister, she speaks...quickly, and quite a bit."
"I told you, Doyle. She said she was nervous. You've all promised to be nice to her. I don't want you intimidating her at all, do you hear me?" Merry, brow furrowed, waved her finger at each of her men. Nicca bit his lip to keep from laughing. His Princess looked so cute when she attempted to intimidate.
It was two weeks prior they'd received a call from another local LA detective agency, on Christmas Eve to be precise. They were investigating the adoption of a client. Their leads took them straight to the heart of Faerie and right to Merry's front door.
In denial at first, her father's affair was soon confirmed by her Aunt, The Queen of Air and Darkness. There were rumors of a child, another Unseelie princess, but nothing was ever confirmed. She wondered if her father was even aware of his other child's existence at the time of his death. Willow would have only been a few months old, and apparently her mother had fled the court when her pregnancy was discovered. The mother, a faerie named Luigreine, had mysteriously vanished. The fact that Andias claimed to know nothing left Merry suspicious of her role in the disappearance of Willow's mother.
A knock on the door sent the Ravens into instant defensive mode. Doyle placed Merry firmly behind him and motioned for Frost to stand at his side. Nicca and Rhys flanked the door, weapons drawn.
"Who is there?" Doyle's voice boomed low and powerful through the room, and surely through the door.
"Umm, I'm here to see Merry? My name's Willow. I think she's expecting me." A soft and unsure voice answered.
Nicca peered through the peephole, and pulled back quickly. An enlarged eyeball looked back through the tiny opening. He leaned forward again, this time to see a redhead, petite and waif-like, but taller than Merry, fidgeting outside the door. Two men were with her, one with dark hair was rubbing her shoulder in a calming motion.
He pulled back and motioned with his fingers that there was one female and two males.
"Who accompanies you?" Demanded Doyle, his grip tightened on his gun.
"Oh, bloody hell, just let the chit inside. She's been driving me soddin' bonkers for the last two weeks." The British voice rose in a falsetto. "My sister this, and my sister that, and I can't wait to meet her and we can do sister-like things, like borrow clothes and whisper about boys." His voice returned to normal. "Can't say I understand that last one, though, Red, what with you batting for the other team and all."
"Shhh, Spike! Shut up!" Willow hissed.
Rhys attempted to muffle his chuckle, then tried to cover it with a cough after receiving a stern glare from Frost.
"I'm sorry about that. He's really harmless, they both are."
"Oy! You sure know how to hurt a bloke, pet." The British voice interrupted again.
Doyle's keen ears picked up some sounds from the other side of the door. He was certain this Spike person had just been hit to encourage his silence.
"Ummm, they're my friends. They're here for moral support. You know, in case Merry decides to hate me, or to keep me from babbling so I don't scare her away."
Merry walked around Doyle and batted at his hand when he tried to pull her back. "Oh, for Pete's sake. Let her in already."
"Merry," Frost began. Her safety was his number one priority, and they knew next to nothing about the people on the other side of the door. The only thing they knew is that tests conducted by an impartial lab chosen by Jeremy concluded that yes, she and this Willow person were closely linked biologically. It was 99.98% certain they were half-sisters.
Merry stomped to the door when no one made a move and opened it herself. The guards frowned at her lack of precaution, but quickly the sight that greeted them caused everyone to freeze.
Except for the height and Meredith's more generous curves, it was like looking into a mirror. Willow's eyes swirled with gold, grass green, and a deep emerald, startling and captivating in such a pale face. She nervously nibbled her lower lip, took a stutter step forward, a step back, and then was unceremoniously pushed through the entryway by an impatient Spike. Willow glared at the vampire over her shoulder.
"Would you behave?" She hissed softly. Turning her gaze to the other redhead before her, Willow stared in awe. The resemblance was truly remarkable. "Wow."
"I'll say. Your eyes..." Merry drifted off, caught up in the familiar swirling colors.
"Oh, yeah." Willow blushed and lowered the objects of her sister's perusal. "They're kind of new. They used to be just plain ol' green, and then there was this ambush with all of these demons, and I thought for sure I was going to die, because my powers were already so tapped out from a spell I just did, and there were so many of them. I tried to get away, but they pinned me down, and the lead demon guy, he got a sword and started talking about hacking off body parts one at a time. He picked it up over his head, and then there was this horrible rush of power. I mean it actually hurt, really, really hurt, and then there was all of this light, and it was coming from me, and they all kind of just burnt up into little piles of demony ash, and I was okay, and you know, not chopped up into pieces. And, anyway, the next time I looked in the mirror, my eyes looked like this. That's how Angel knew I was at least part fey."
She turned to look at Angel over her shoulder. He shot her a reassuring smile, and she took a few deep breaths in an attempt to settle her churning stomach. "Sorry. I babble when I get nervous."
Merry smiled gently and took the other girl's hand. "There's so much I want to know about you. I just don't know where to start." She began to lead Willow further into the room. When the men with her sister didn't move to follow, she turned around. "Are you coming in?"
"Don't know, Princess. Guess that's up to you." Spike replied absently. He was still struck at the resemblance between Red and her sister.
Doyle sniffed the air and smelled death. "Vampires!" He growled and reached for his sword sheathed on his back.
Willow hurried back to stand in front of Spike and Angel, arms spread wide in an attempt to shelter them from the protective Raven's attack. "No! Stop! They're my friends, and they're good vampires. They have souls."
"Vampires with souls!" Frost scoffed and eyed the two men behind Willow warily. "I've never heard of such a thing."
Rhys peered closely at Angel and Spike, and began to nod slowly. "Neither have I, but it's true. I can feel their souls, see it in their auras."
"We're not here to cause any problems." Angel tried to smooth over the situation, and grabbed Spike by the back of his neck roughly to curtail any smart aleck comments from his grand-childe. "We're just here for Willow."
After several minutes of deliberation, and several reassurances from Angel, Spike, Willow and Rhys that yes, the vampires did indeed have souls, Merry quietly invited them in. Willow grasped each of their hands and warily led them into the apartment, eyeing Doyle and Frost suspiciously. They seemed to be the most dangerous of the men present.
After a while things calmed down. Merry's Ravens stopped peering at the two vampires as if they were potential threats. Willow and her sister spoke of each others' lives, and the younger redhead begged for stories of the father she would never know. All in all it was an encouraging and enlightening afternoon. Both agreed to meet for lunch the following day and felt it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
As Merry walked her sister to the door, they hugged one another tightly, rocking back and forth. It was like coming home, as if they'd known each other forever. Willow pulled back and grinned.
"I know it's a little late, and you know, raised Jewish, practicing Wiccan now, but I saw it right after we found out about you around Christmas, and I had to get it. I hope you like it."
It took Merry a moment to catch on to what Willow was saying, but she got the gist when a tiny gift wrapped box was pulled from her sister's purse. She felt her eyes tear up slightly and accepted the present. She gingerly unwrapped the gift, making sure not to put a single rip in the red, metallic paper. Upon opening the box, she stared at the charm bracelet cushioned on padded velvet.
Willow looked on nervously and pointed at the odd charm attached. "It's the Japanese symbol for sister. I told my best friend that if all of the evidence we found was true, all I wanted for Christmas was a sister."
Merry sniffled, and her vision blurred with more tears. She pulled Willow into another embrace. "I love it. And you're right. You're the best present ever."