Title: The Message
Crossover: Joan of Arcadia
Disclaimer: BtVS belongs to Joss Whedon, et al and Joan of Arcadia belongs to Barbara Hall, et al.
Summary: God wants Joan to pass on a message.
Author's notes: I seem to be on a Joan kick at the minute, I’m impatiently waiting for the 16th May (the end of my 2nd year uni exams and the start of season 2 of JoA over here).
Challenge: TwistedShorts #02 - Firefly Episode Titles
I was having a normal day. Breakfast was as usual; Mom complaining that we should all eat together, whilst sorting her class stuff and the rest of us grabbing stuff on the way out of the door. I think Dad has some big case going down; maybe it’s something to do with that weird stuff Kev keeps reporting on.
School was even normal. Grace was all snarly and weird. Luke was trying to work out how to be romantic without Grace realising what he was up to, like that’s ever going to happen. Adam was being Adam. Everything was normal; I was revelling in the normality. Right up until I turned the corner and saw him standing there, a smug look on his face. Why God wants to look like a Goth or a Punk or whatever I don’t know, I guess we’re all ‘God’s children’, it’s probably just some ploy to embarrass me further.
“Ok, lay it on me, what is it I have to do this time?”
“I just want you to pass on a message for me. Don’t look at me like that Joan.”
“That’s all, just pass on a message?”
“Yes. I want you to make an appointment with the new guidance counsellor.”
“Aren’t I supposed to go to you for guidance?”
“Very funny, Joan.”
“I thought so, so what’s the message?”
“Joan, you’re not going to just waltz in there, give her the message and leave.”
“No. You’ll know when it’s the right time to give her the message.”
“Great, just great. This is going to be one of those ongoing complicated ones, isn’t it?”
“It doesn’t have to be. I just want you to tell her I said thank you.”
“I’m supposed to tell a total stranger that God says thank you? I’m supposed to tell my guidance counsellor that; she’ll be guiding me right into an institution for ‘special’ people!”
“You’ll know the right time to say it Joan.”
And just like that he walks off, ooh, God is so annoying.
So, the rest of my day went back to normal. Classes were fine; I made an appointment to see Miss Summers and successfully dodged both Friedman and my Mom in the halls.
Not that I could say the same for either of them at dinner. At least Kev and Dad made it though. And right about the time Kev passed me the salad the inquisition started.
“So Joan, I heard in the staffroom that you’ve signed up to see the new guidance counsellor?”
“Yeah.” Luke and Friedman are laughing at me; God they’re so annoying.
“Boys, that’s not very nice. Joan is being very sensible here; it’s always good to seek guidance. Do you have any ideas, Joan?”
“No, that’s why I’m going to see the ‘guidance’ counsellor.”
“That’s great, Joan.”
Say hello to Arcadia’s newest guidance counsellor, yes I have actually got the qualifications this time; with all the new slayers I had time to go back to college.
Why Arcadia? It’s peaceful and quiet; it gives Dawn somewhere nice to come home to during break from university. Or at least I thought it was peaceful and quiet, I should have known better. Something made Mom choose Sunnydale and it was that same ‘something’ that made me choose Arcadia.
From what I can tell from the local paper there’s something weird going down. I’m not sure what yet. I have a feeling that by the end of this I’ll be calling in the mini slayers and the gang.
But in the meantime, back to the real world. My job: I’ve been here a week, the kids seem nice, not as bad as some of the brats from Sunnydale, maybe they’re just lulling me into a false sense of security.
I get to meet Joan Girardi today, no she’s not some kid I’ve been warned about. Her Mom, Helen, is the art teacher and she talks about her kids so much, there’s Kevin and Luke too. Kevin is the one who has written some of the articles in the paper and their Dad, Will, is the police chief.
Back to Joan, according to her Mom she’s had a hard time settling in here and has taken to doing some weird stuff. As long as she’s not slaying vampires or stealing stuff she’s got one up on the Summers girls.
“Yes, Joan Girardi?” she nods, looking slightly nervous, “come in, you can shut the door too.”
I actually get my own office here.
“You can call me Buffy”, usual surprised look on the face, “Miss Summers makes me feel old.”
Great, I’m obviously old enough to get the tolerate-the-old-person smile.
“What did you want to talk about?”
“Uh-” startled rabbit look.
“Anything, anything at all, life, careers, school, home, boys…”
“I, is it weird to feel like even though you don’t know what you want in life, you’ve got some big ‘destiny’, or something?”
Oh, the big one, but at least it’s something I can deal with.
“Not at all, Joan, not at all.”
She looks relieved, like she was meaning that in more than just a typical teenage way.
“The world is a big place, you can feel quite small sometimes, but everyone has their own part to play.” Some bigger than others.
We get down to the normal stuff, she’s a good kid, reminds me of a mix of Dawn, Willow and myself.
As she leaves she turns back, smiles, “Thanks Buffy, He,” she looks up, “says thank you too.”
And then she’s gone. The sun shines in through the blinds, I feel at peace and there’s the biggest smile on my face.
I’m going to like Arcadia, although I’ve got to keep and eye on Joan, ‘He?’ It can’t be anything too bad; my spider senses aren’t tingling. I turn to open my door to look for my next kid; he’s there, kind of impatient, Joan and I talked for a while, “Call me Friedman” he drawls as he walks past me into my office.
The Goth kid in the hall grins at me as I turn to go back to work, yeah, Arcadia’s peaceful.