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House of Cards

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Summary: Someone is playing a game... And the Scoobies get drawn in...

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Harry Potter > General > DramaKarenUFR1822,225021,47311 Jun 0511 Jun 05No

Part One

Part One

Faith had, at the urging of Willow, taken up yoga. It wasn't her usual workout, she really tended to lean toward the violence, which was perhaps why the redheaded woman had advised her to try something new... Something that didn't generally end with a hole in the wall. Giles was still kind of pissed off about that last incident.

Frowning slightly, the brunette Slayer stretched, arching her back a little and heaving out a sigh. As much as she found yoga to be quite relaxing it was, given her usual workouts, also a little boring on occasion. She just couldn't resist the occasional call to violence...

The brunette Slayer gave a slight start at the sudden an unexpected knock on the door, her gaze sliding over to the offending piece of wood. "Could somebody get that?" she yelled out, pressing her lips together and continuing to stretch as Xander came out of the kitchen and into the living room.

"Hey, you're closest to the door," the young man began, stopping short when he saw Faith stretched out on the floor. He seemed to go into a stupor whenever he spotted one of them doing yoga... Probably fantasizing about various levels of flexibility.

"Yes, but I'm busy. And Giles said I have terrible manners when I've been interrupted. You wouldn't want me to punch the poor unfortunate soul on the other side of the door in the face, would you?" the Slayer asked as sweetly as she could, and Xander gave her an arch look.

"If it's a door to door salesman, then yes, I would want that. Just don't tell Giles I said that," the young man informed her as he went over to the door and pulled it open. Faith turned her head to see who it was, freezing when she saw the look that was on Xander's face.

"Xan-"

"What in the hell are you doing here?" Xander spat out as he reached out and yanked someone into the room... Some middle-aged guy, probably about Giles's age, that was eyeing Xander with a mixture of concern and contempt. His gaze grew interested when he spotted Faith on the floor, but upon seeing the glare the Slayer sent his way - she figured that Xander's reaction couldn't mean the guy was good - he took a step back.

"Perhaps I should-"

"Oh, like hell. Giles, Buffy, Willow, get out here!" Xander yelled towards the back of the house as he swung the door shut behind the man, tugging him to the center of the room. Faith rose quickly to avoid being stepped on.

"Xan? Xander, what is it?" Buffy Summers called as she came rushing into the room just an instant before the others, the blonde Slayer stopping short when she saw who was in the room, her eyes narrowing dangerously as she looked at the man. "Ethan Rayne. I see the army let you go. Or maybe you just got lost in the shuffle when the Initiative went under," Buffy said with a scowl, her arms crossed over her chest, and Faith was beginning to get an inkling of what was going on here. Though she'd never encountered the man personally - not even back when she'd been working with Buffy and the others, though she knew he'd shown up at some point around then - she had definitely heard his name before. Willow had mentioned it to her once or twice, and though she couldn't remember one hundred percent what he'd done, she did remember that he was an old acquaintance of Giles's, and he had come to Sunnydale to wreak havoc more than once... And from the look on the face of one Rupert Giles, the current head of the Watcher's Council wasn't exactly happy to see his old 'friend.'

"What in the bloody hell do you think you're doing here, Ethan? If you think I'm ever going to have anything even remotely approaching trust with you again after what you did last time... You are sorely mistaken."

"Now, Ripper-"

"You turned me into a Fyarl demon!" Giles shouted, stepping closer to Ethan with a look on his face that made Faith wonder whether the Englishman was just going to go ahead and punch the other guy in the face. The brunette Slayer was rather looking forward to it until Buffy stepped between the two men, putting a restraining hand on Giles's arm.

"Giles, please... Let him speak. And then you can kick his ass," the blonde said, and Ethan blanched slightly.

"I knew this was a bad idea-"

"Then why in the bloody hell did you come here?" Giles demanded, and Ethan shot him a killing glare.

"Because I needed help and didn't know where else to turn! You're supposed to help the innocent, aren't you? Isn't that your little mission statement or something? Help those in need and all of that garbage?"

"You might be in need, but you sure as hell aren't innocent," Willow said, speaking for the first time as she glared at the man.

"But my niece is. My sister's daughter," Ethan said when Giles looked confused. The clarification didn't help much, as Giles still looked a bit inquiring.

"You cut off all contact with your family years ago-"

"They cut it off from me. Didn't trust me. Wasn't safe for them, so I let it be. I never wanted to see my family get hurt, Ripper. And the girl, Ripper, she's an innocent. Not even sixteen yet. She doesn't deserve to be in this mess," Ethan told them, shoving a picture into Giles's hands, knowing that if he saw the girl, Giles would be more likely to help him.

"What mess?"

"I got in some trouble. Made a few deals I couldn't keep, and I made them with the wrong people. I didn't know they knew about my sister... I've kept track of them over the years, Ripper. Kept my distance, though, not wanting anyone to know of them. People couldn't go after my family because they didn't know I had a family," Ethan said as the rest of them gathered around Giles to get a look at the picture, and Faith felt something in her stomach drop as she remembered something she'd seemed earlier on the news... A photograph very much like this one.

"Until now," Giles muttered, giving Ethan a measuring look. "How do I know this isn't just a game? Another one of your schemes?"

"Because it's not."

"He's telling the truth, Giles," Faith whispered, and the Watcher looked over at her.

"Faith, I realize that you don't know this man, don't know what he's capable of, but-"

"He's telling the truth, Giles. I saw it on the news. That picture. That girl," she said softly, turning the picture over in her hand, reading the name off of the back of it. "Hermione Granger."

The End?

You have reached the end of "House of Cards" – so far. This story is incomplete and the last chapter was posted on 11 Jun 05.

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