Tuesday on the Hellmouth or There and Back Again
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Chapter 5: Tuesday on the Hellmouth or There and Back Again
Imladris, Dungeons, Third Age of Middle Earth
“He has been silent for a week, milord,” Inglor informed Elrond, glancing worriedly down the hallway. “Never says a word, just stares out his window. Recently, he has taken to sitting in the corner, and his food is never eaten.”
Elrond nodded at all the young soldier said, his gaze fixated on the last cell in the dank dungeons. Thanking the guard, Elrond dismissed him and traveled down the gloomy hall by himself.
The half-elf shivered at the memories present in the stone works, and long faded screams echoed in his mind. He didn’t want to put his friend here, but he had no choice. Coming to the end, he carefully peered into the gloom of the dark cell.
“Glorfindel?” The soft call quickly faded into the damp air. Elrond listened carefully, but no answer was forthcoming. Stepping closer, the half-elf craned his neck and studied the inside of the cell. In the corner was a bunch of clothing, huddled and dirty.
Elrond felt his eyes tear up in sympathy for his friend, and he took a key out of his pocket and opened the door with a creak.
“Glorfindel?” he asked again, advancing upon the figure. No movement. Stepping closer, Elrond was tempted to call the guards, but resisted the urge in time.
Stepping right next to the figure, Elrond frowned at the continued lack of response.
Bending down, Elrond studied the clothing. The realization, when it came to him, made him smile, though also apprehensive. Standing up, he bellowed for the guards, who arrived seconds later.
Standing back, Elrond glanced around the room.
The Balrog Slayer had finally accomplished his dream.
Glorfindel had disappeared.
Sunnydale, California, Summers’ residence, 2001 AD
Willow looked around the room with wide eyes. A multitude of thoughts ran around in her head, but only one word escaped.
“I’m sorry,” Giles said quietly, taking off his glasses and wiping them on his cotton handkerchief, “repeat that for me, will you?”
Willow shifted on the couch, green eyes downcast. Beside her, Anya was fidgeting nervously.
Willow cleared her throat and began again, “Well, Dawn wanted to be...somewhere else and, um, I sort of wanted to, uh, send her, you know, there.”
Giles nodded, “And…?”
“And,” Willow drew the word out, shrugging helplessly, “I sort of asked Anya to help send Dawn, you know, there, and, uh, she, um, well, you know…”
“Yes, we do,” Xander said irritably, dark brows drawn together in a scowl, “but we sort of can’t believe it. Repeat your exact words.”
“Dawn is gone,” Anya said loudly, then gave a sigh of relief. “There we go, off my chest.”
Xander stood up and began to pace, his long strides taking him to the cabinet and back to the door frame in five steps. “Why does she always do this?” he asked, “running off, hurting herself whenever something bad happens. We’ve tried to help her. How much more can we do?”
A snort came from the corner where Spike sat, his cigarette glowing red as he took another breath of toxin in.
“Help? Is that wha’ you’re callin’ it now? Ha, she’d find more help if she went on the street and begged for cash.”
Xander turned to the vampire and snapped, “Who the hell asked you?”
Spike took the cigarette out of his mouth and blew a smoke ring up to the ceiling. Holding it between the middle and index fingers of his right hand, Spike raised an eyebrow at the irate group around him. “Wha’? Well, you weren’t.”
Giles glared hard at the vampire, blue eyes glinting coldly. “And I suppose you did? And, for your information, we helped Dawn out as much as we could.”
“Yeah,” Anya cut in, “seeing as she’s not even related.”
“Do shut up,” Giles snapped, voice tired. Anya sunk into her seat and pouted.
“Helped out? How?” Spike asked, looking at the members of the group one by one. “What did you do, you poncy git,” the vampire asked, focused on Xander, “sit there and ignore her? Speak to her in clipped, ‘fuck-off-or-I’ll-gut-you’ tones?” The vampire gave a small snort, “yeah, that helped a whole lot!”
“And you,” he said, turning to Giles, “you can’t even look at her without wiping all emotion from your face! D’you think she wants to come down and see your indifference?” Giles looked slightly stung.
“Oh, and miss ‘hello, I’m a vengeance demon and hate all mortals!’ You were big with the helping. So helpful, that you were the one to constantly remind the group how out of place Dawn was, is. Don’t think she didn’t hear you,” he said angrily, cutting off her protests, “’cause she did. The only ones who ever really wanted to, or gave any, help were Witches’R’Us over there.”
“And, yes, she cut herself, but wouldn’t you? Two months after she finds out she’s a mythical key, that she doesn’t really exist, that hers and everyone else’s memories are fake, she watches as her sister, the only thing left in the world to her, takes her place and jumps off a tower into magical energy, once again saving the world and leaving her not-sister alone. Oh, and let’s not forget the fact that her mother is dead and her father, fuck the bastard, is pounding his secretary in some hotel in God-knows-where. The least you could have done was try to understand.”
The vampire leaned back in his chair and took a drag on his cigarette. “Fuck me if I’m wrong, but that doesn’t sound like helping, or caring from where I’m sitting.”
The rest of the group stayed silent after Spike’s outburst, shocked when they realized they’re behavior towards one they had known since…forever.
“Oh shit,” Xander whispered, sinking down into his chair, head in his hands, “for once the vampire is right. We’ve all been horrible to little Dawny.”
“Where is she?” Giles asked, looking at Willow who was holding Tara’s hand.
Willow shrugged helplessly. “I don’t know,” she admitted quietly, “I just fulfilled her wish.”
“Which was,” Giles asked, prompting the witch to continue.
Willow swallowed and nodded, “Which was to be with…him. I don’t know who ‘him’ is, but she seemed to want him so bad I couldn’t turn away.”
Xander stared at his friend for a moment, then, with careful restraint on his temper, said, “WHAT?!”
Willow winced at her friend’s bellow.
“You granted Dawn’s wish and you don’t even know who, or what, this guy is? Are you…Jesus, Willow,” Xander cried, one hand raking through his hair, the other in a tight fist at his side, “she could’ve been wanting some guy from a movie or book! What happens if she was dumped in the middle of a war, or on the Titanic, or…or something just as equally bad.”
Willow shrugged helplessly, eyes filling with tears, leaning against Tara. “I’m sorry, I didn’t think. I just…I just wanted Dawn to be happy.”
Xander’s tirade deflated at his friend’s look of dejection. Kneeling down in front of her, he drew her into a hug, rubbing her back and petting her hair. “Don’t worry,” he whispered, “I’m sorry. We’ll find her. And, besides, she’s strong, she’ll survive. No matter where you drop her.”
Gondolin, courtyard of the House of the Golden Flower, First Age of Middle Earth
Dawn stared at him with wide blue eyes, her hair whipping around in the wind, the roar of a demon ringing in her ears, ash turning her beautiful blue dress black. But none of that mattered. He was alive, in the flesh, wearing armor.
“You,” she whispered.
He stared at her as well, his hair dirty, eyes weary and defeated. But still, as he stared at her, new hope rose within him and she could see it as his eyes regained some of their former sparkle.
“I do not know you, Lady,” her heart dropped at that confession, though it rose again at his next words, “but I find my soul attracted to you. Please, leave the city and, when I escape as well, we shall speak.”
Dawn frowned. “No way,” she yelled, trying to be heard over the gaining noise, “I’m staying and fighting.”
Glorfindel stared at her, incredulous. “But you are a Lady. Please, leave this place!”
Dawn rolled her eyes. “Screw that. Now where’s a- ah-hah!” she cried, spotting a sword lying on the ground. Running over and picking it up, Dawn turned to her dream lover and held it triumphantly. “Kay!” she cried, “where’s he demons? Assuming there’s more than one.”
The temperature suddenly rose, and he, Glorfindel, stared over her shoulder in horror.
“What?” she asked, voice suddenly tremulous, the fear in his eyes affecting her. Hearing a deafening roar, she froze, then slowly turned to look over her shoulder. The last thing she remembered was a cry of pain, her own, a searing heat, and then blissful darkness.
Halls of Mandos, Throne Room of the Vala of Death
“Well, that, as mortals say, sucked.”
Manwe eyed his brother and nodded. “Yes, it did, did it not? This is harder than I thought.”
Lorien nodded as well. “Yes. She is more stubborn than we anticipated. And, Glorfindel dies. Perfect.”
Manwe gave a small smile at his brother’s sarcasm. “Glad one of us approves.” Gaze and tone turning serious, the Lord of the Vala, the Life and Breath of Arda, turned away and walked down a gloomy corridor. “We must now speak to Mandos. Only he can give life back to those two.”
“Oh goody,” Lorien said, following his fair brother down the corridor, “and we all know /he’s/ so much fun to be around.”
Sunnydale, California, Summers’ residence, 2001 AD
Two hours later, Willow and the gang sat around the Summers’ living room, the red-headed witch in the centre, eyes black as she chanted.
Finally, with a sigh, Willow stopped and collapsed, the candles surrounding her going out abruptly and simultaneously. Stirring, she moaned and looked up as the others gathered around her.
“Did it work?” she asked, her voice scratchy. Xander shook his head sadly, looking around at the room.
Willow frowned and sat up, aided by Tara and Giles. Spike glowered in a corner. “But,” it was supposed to work,” the red-head protested, “she should be back and…”
She trailed off, eyes, now green, going vacant. After several minutes, and much pacing and worried muttering, Willow came to with a scream. Looking around, frantically, she clawed at Tara’s shirt in a panic.
“Wha’?” Spike came forward and knelt in front of the witch. Making eye contact, the blonde vampire asked slowly, “Where is Dawn?”
“She’s hurt,” Willow whispered back, her voice terrified, eyes leaking tears, “she’s so hurt, and no one to save her. Something…I couldn’t grab her. Something’s pulling her back. Oh, Tara,” she cried, gripping onto her girlfriend, “she was in so much pain. Little Dawny.”
Giles took a deep breath and reviewed their current situation. Finally, after much debating with himself, he said, “Willow, where is Buffy?”
Willow sniffled and said, “I think she might have gone to a hell dimension, or she’s in Limbo, or Paradise. I can’t be sure.”
Giles nodded and continued. “Right, well, I think we need her.”
Everything stopped and all turned to watch the former Watcher as he began to pace. Spike stood up slowly, taking out his ever present cigarette pack and pulling one out.
“I can deal with losing Buffy, because we had Dawn. With Dawn gone, the one thing that keeps me going is the thought that she’s with her love. Now, knowing she is hurting, I cannot stand it and find myself with a hard decision to make.”
“Willow,” Giles asked, “can you pull her back?”
Willow nodded, her eyes hardening as this new task was put upon her. She could bring back Buffy and, with the Slayer’s help, they would find Dawn and save her.
Halls of Mandos, Throne Room of the Vala Death.
Lorien frowned as they watched the ceremony end and watched the two lovers disappear. “It may well be just my perception, but, they aren’t in Gondolin.”
Mandos frowned, studying the looking glass, finding it blank and dark. “Nay, they have left Gondolin, as well as Middle Earth, behind,” the Vala of Death said quietly.
Mandos raised a silent eyebrow in question as Lorien went into one of his little tirades. “Oh, goody,” the Vala of Dreams said sarcastically, “instead of throwing them out of your Halls into Gondolin, you throw them out of Gondolin and, in fact, out of Middle Earth! And you wonder why we don’t like you.”
Mandos’ dark brows rose, his gaze turning sharply, black and grey hair dancing against the small of his back, sliding over his robes with nary a sound.
Manwe broke up the potential feud. “How?” he asked, eyes closed, brow down in contemplation.
Mandos scowled, “Something, a great power, drew her close. I tried, but I could not put them back into Gondolin.”
“Oh, this is always good, when mysterious dark powers pop up,” Lorien crabbed.
Manwe hushed the Vala of Dreams with a glare. Turning to the darker of the two, Manwe sighed. “Thank-you, my brother, for helping. For now, we can do nothing but wait.”
Sunnydale, California, Summers’ residence, 2001
Buffy looked around, her white gown settling against her, moistened by tears.
“Let me guess. It’s Tuesday, right?”
Tell me what you think. Reviews feed my bunnies, and then they stop chewing on my head. :) Song by Sidney Forest. Love it. Just came to me while I was thinking about our two love birds.
the room is empty
the lights are dim
and my heart wonders
if I'll ever see you again
my tears are hungry
for an open door
when your arms held me
I never felt that way before
I'll be waiting
I'll be watching
under a blue moon
the taste of heaven
once in a blue moon
once in a blue moon
do you remember
when the wind blew free
and we fit together
if the wind closes a door
it will open another