Large PrintHandheldAudioRating
using
 paypal
Twisting The Hellmouth Crossing Over Awards - Results
Is your email address still valid?

Supposed to Be

StoryReviewsStatisticsRelated StoriesTracking
Story

This story is No. 1 in the series "Identity Trilogy". You may wish to read the series introduction first.

Summary: Identity Trilogy 1. He has titles, and expectations, but who is he really? She had names, and memories, but were any of them real? It’s finally time for them to decide for themselves. *Rewritten*

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Harry Potter > Dawn-Centered > Pairing: Draco MalfoySunfireFR1513,923112,03317 Oct 0523 Mar 12Yes
Title: Supposed to Be
Series: Identity Trilogy
Author: Sunfire
E-mail: sunfirejc@yahoo.com
Rating: FR15
Classification: HP/BtVS
Pairing: Draco/Dawn
Spoilers: HP:HBP
Summary: Loyal son, monarch of the dungeons, Malfoy heir, Death Eater. He has titles, and expectations, but who is he really? Key, sidekick, slayer’s little sister. She had names, and memories, but were any of them real? It’s finally time for them to decide for themselves.
Disclaimer: Nothing is mine save the individual warped plot, but who wants that? Lyrics are from Michelle Branch’s Empty Handed.


~:Here I am, take me
It’s easier to give in
Some people mistake me
They only hear what they want to hear:~

Loyalty. Dignity. Confidence. Strength. Intelligence. Cunning. Those were the qualities a Malfoy possessed. Awe. Respect. Fear. Those were the feelings a Malfoy evoked. Purity. Superiority. Mastery. Those were the things a Death Eater sought. That was the way things went, the way they’d always gone. For as long as he could remember those ideals had shaped him, driven him, become him.

There was never any doubt that they would do so because he had been told that they would. He had been told that those ideals and qualities defined him, so they had. That had been the way others saw him, the way he saw himself, simply because it was the way he’d been raised to see himself, the way he had been cultivated to make others see him. And he’d never questioned that. Not until now.

Now he looked at himself and he wondered. He’d always been told how to act, how to view himself and his world, but then, every once in a while, he wondered. Why?

~:If you’re losing sleep
Forgive me
I just can’t keep
Pretending:~

Why should he be the things, think the things, want the things he’d been told to be and think and want?

Because he was a Malfoy. Because he was a Pure Blood. Because he was a Death Eater.

He’d given himself those answers over and over again. Yet the question kept returning, haunting his mind. Why? Why was he those things? He’d been born a Malfoy, been raised a Malfoy, a Pure Blood. But he hadn’t been born a Death Eater. He’d been born and raised the son of Death Eaters, but in truth he’d become one.

Of his own volition he’d held out his arm and allowed it to be seared with the Dark Mark because he was a Malfoy, a Pure Blood, and that was what he was supposed to do, that was who he was supposed to be. Everyone said so. His father, his mother, his godfather, his friends, his Lord. Everyone. Save a stupid, sentimental old man who’d said he had options.

Options.

The word rang eerily in his head. For as long as he could remember it had been a foreign concept, foreign and unnecessary. Why did he need options when he was a Malfoy? Why would he want the chance to be anything else? He never had before. But now… well, now he knew. As he looked at the faces of the people around him and saw his future, he knew.

He knew the reality of the goals he’d always sought and supported, knew the extent of the actions required to reach those goals, and he knew the effects of those actions. That withered old man fell again in his mind’s eye, fell over the edge of the tower and down towards the ground. The threats to his life and his family’s life that had spurned him towards his ‘project’ the year before hissed in his ears. He knew what he’d become and he knew what he wanted. Options.

~:I’m packing my bags
‘Cause I don’t wanna be
The only one who’s
Drowning in their misery:~

Dawn stared around her room feeling more than a little helpless and feeling stupid for it. It wasn’t a monumental decision she was facing, just the simple matter of what to pack for a short trip out of the country. She’d traveled a lot since they’d move to the new Watcher’s Headquarters, this wasn’t anything new for her. But still she felt as if she didn’t know quite where to start. That wasn’t anything new either.

It was strange, that after everything that had happened, everything that they had accomplished, that she felt more lost now than she had then. Even in the middle of the fight to save her from Glory, when she had been dealing with the idea that she was really a big ball of energy, that a hell god was out to kill her, and use her death to basically unleash that hell on their world, she had felt more secure then she did at that moment. Even as they battled the First and the ground was literally falling out from under her she’d felt more steady than she did now. Even when they’d been homeless and had to rebuild the Watchers Council and locate new slayers all over the world, she’d felt more together than she did with it all coming together.

She knew she shouldn’t be having such a problem with her life, especially small inconsequential details in it, like what to pack for her trip. Yet still it took her hours to get her things together, to determine what she needed to bring and do so as she got ready and made her way to the airport. Still, it was a battle to concentrate on the matter at hand and the errand before her.

The young woman gripped her bag tightly in her hand upon finally reaching her destination and making her way through the empty streets of whatever little town they’d sent her to this time. Was it some flaw in the consciousness that the monks had woven for her, some bit of mis-wiring in her fabricated mind that caused her to feel so oddly? Or was it the effect of her original purpose being opening a hell dimension that left her feeling somehow akin to chaos? Or perhaps it was just a product of spending what added up to her entire existence as a person atop the hellmouth that made her feel so confused amongst the relative peace they’d found after the First had been destroyed?

~:And I’ll take that chance
‘Cause I just wanna breathe
And I won’t look back and wonder
How it’s supposed to be
How it’s supposed to be:~

Despite the assurance of a single old man, Draco had no proof of any options available to him. He didn’t know if they existed, let alone what they were. He had no one to tell him. He’d always had someone to tell him. He’d always had someone to tell him what to do and who to be. But then again, maybe that was the problem.

He shook his head slightly and let out a silent sigh. His father had always said that a Malfoy was the best the Wizarding world had to offer, that a Malfoy could do as he pleased. But then again, his father had also said that a Malfoy served the destined ruler of their world, that a Malfoy stayed true to the pure blood in their veins and served the greater good by cleansing their society of its filth and preserving it for those worthy of its magic.

Would these elusive options do any of those things? Should they?

His eyes fell shut, and he saw the colorful robes flutter in the wind as a once lively man toppled over the tower’s edge, reduced to nothing more than dead weight.

Dead weight. Dead. Dead. Dead. Dead.

He shook his head in an attempt to drown out the sound of those fateful words as they were spoken with his godfather’s rough voice. Avada Kedavra.

Dead. Dead. Dead.

He clenched his fists as he tried not to feel the weight of his wand as it had sat in his hand that night, aimed at the doddering old man he’d been raised to despise.

Dead. Dead. Dead.

It was supposed to have been his voice that had spoken, his words that had sealed the Headmaster’s fate, his wand that had sent the lethal burst of green light into the old man’s chest. It was supposed to have been him that had killed him.

But it wasn’t. So how much did it matter what else was supposed to have been, what else he was supposed to be? How much did it matter what he did, what options, if any, he decided to take. He felt the terror that had pervaded Madame Rosmerta as he’d cast the Imperius on her, forced her to give the cursed necklace to Katie Bell. He saw the body lying sprawled on the floor as he leapt over it and towards the stairs. He saw the look on the Headmaster’s face as Snape had cast that last curse.

It did matter. He knew that. It mattered a lot. It mattered what he did, who he was. What he’d done had mattered. What he was going to do mattered. Now he just had to make sure that it mattered in the right way.

~:There’s a prism by the window
It lets the light leak in
I wish you would let me
You feel the water but do you swim?:~

Things seemed all right on the surface, it seemed like her life was finally coming together, and things should finally make sense for her. But without a solid enemy to fight, she felt like she was now only fighting herself. So much of her life had been shaped by forces now absent. Her mother had guided her, had structured her life with love and rules, much as Buffy had tried to do for a time, though the grief had steered her for most of that time and the time that followed. Between the grief and the guilt had been the fear. The fighting. What most her age would have considered debilitating, she had eventually considered normal. Now, without her mother beside her, without evil stalking behind her, she was finding ‘normal’ an open pool with no flotation device in sight. She was eighteen years old and still had no idea whatsoever what she was doing.

Not that she didn’t know how to complete this latest errand that Giles had sent her on. Or that she didn’t know exactly how to fulfill the other duties that had been assigned to her in her new role at the rebuilt council. Or even that she didn’t know how to carry out any number of other responsibilities that she could very well end up taking over when she got back to their headquarters.

No, that stuff she knew quite well. She knew the danger and chaos of world-save-age. And she knew the work and effort of helping to train slayers and run the day-to-day operations of a still wobbly council. She knew all that stuff, stuff most, if not all other eighteen year olds didn’t know. But the other stuff, the deeper shit, as Faith liked to call it, that she didn’t know at all.

She didn’t know what she was really doing with her life, apart from the apocalypse averting that she’d been somehow involved in for so many years. She didn’t know what kind of a difference she made or was going to make outside the council library. She didn’t know what her purpose or use was now that she no longer opened the gate to a hell dimension. Did she even have one now, or had that bled away that night on the tower?

~:And it’s only me
Empty-handed
With a childish grin
And a camera:~

His life had to matter the right way. But the right way had been so clear to Draco for so long that changing it changed everything. It changed all the goals, the ideals that he had believed in for his entire life. It changed all the people he’d known, the people he’d looked up to, respected. It changed the way he saw them, and the way he saw himself. It changed how he viewed what he’d always thought of as their noble actions and what he’d always seen as the enemy’s betrayal of the Wizarding world.

It changed everything.

The only thing that didn’t change was what had happened. What he’d done to Madam Rosmerta, to Katie Bell, to the entire school. What he’d almost done to Dumbledore. What Snape had done to the Headmaster. What the Death Eaters had done to all those Muggles and mudbloods, and Muggle-lovers. What his father had done to his mother, what his mother had done to her cousin. All that had not changed. Could not be changed. No one could be healed or brought back to life, none of the damage could be undone.

But perhaps some of the future damage could be prevented. Perhaps he could prevent it.

He knew things. He knew things that were being done, things that were going to be done. He knew people. He knew who they were and where they were. He knew places. He knew where things were stored and where things were going to happen. He knew lots of things, things only a Death Eater knew, things only someone proven loyal to the Dark Lord could discover, things only someone credited with contributing to the death of Dumbledore would be thought worthy of knowing.

He could tell these things, tell them to people that could do something about them, people who could prevent them. All he had to do was tell. It could be as simple as walking into the Ministry and opening his mouth. Or, if he didn’t want to experience whatever the Aurors had come up with since the Dementors had switched sides, he could make it as simple as scribbling down a few facts and sending an owl.

Yes, an owl might keep him safe, at least from the ministry. The Death Eaters were another matter, however. Once the information got out and was used, the Dark Lord would know someone had talked, and his followers would search until he was identified and punished for his betrayal, because that would be how they saw it. His family, his friends, everyone would see him as a traitor to the cause. And he would be.

~:I’m packing my bags
‘Cause I don’t wanna be
The only one who’s
Drowning in their misery:~

Just when she was supposed to be grown up, mature and independent and focused on the life ahead of her, she felt alone and lost, and younger than she’d been when she’d first drawn an actual breath not created as a memory by a bunch of monks. It had been so long since she’d learned the truth, it seemed, yet she was only now truly understanding what she lacked because of the hollow ring of memories based on a spell rather than a life. Was she the person she’d become because of the life she’d actually lived or because of the life the monks made her think she’d lived before she’d been born into a high schooler’s body.

How did she become herself and not the end result of some monks’ make-believe? How did she build a life outside of the network of people who knew the truth about her mystical beginnings? Would she ever be able to find someone who could be her friend, let alone anything more, that would understand her? Was she forever stuck within the slayer network, never to make connections or have relationships outside that supernatural tide pool? Could she be her own person, with her own friends outside the life her sister had built? She’d been made from Buffy, sent to Buffy. But she wasn’t Buffy, and didn’t want to be. She wanted to be Dawn, Dawn Not-Fake-Memories Summers. She just didn’t know how.

She didn’t want to turn her back on the friends and family that only wanted her to be happy because she wasn’t sure if, when she felt happy it was because she was or the monks had programmed her to be, so that she would want to stay were they thought she would be safe. Could they do that? Program responses into her? Had they? Was anything she felt or thought real, or just a byproduct of their handiwork? It had been hard enough to deal with not being able to sort out what she remembered having happened with what actually had. Especially since she didn’t know exactly when she had gone from green ball of energy to actual live girl. There wasn’t a date she could point to and say everything after this was real. But she’d done her best to deal with that.

Then she’d started thinking about programmable thoughts and feelings and reactions. One of her teachers had gone off a philosophical tangent once, talking about the different theories on the development of personalities. She’d talked about how some thought a person’s self and personality was determined by genetics and who they’d be was predetermined at birth while some said a person became who they were because of the experiences they had throughout their life. Nature versus nuture, she thought it was called. Either way, she was monk-made and monk-formed. Or at least half-formed. They had made her from Buffy, their blood was the same, or at least close enough that Buffy’s death had closed the portal. And at least half of the experiences that she’d been through hadn’t even happened. So how could she be anything but what the monks had meant for her to be?

~:And I’ll take that chance
‘Cause I just wanna breathe
And I won’t look back and wonder
How it’s supposed to be
How it’s supposed to be
Tell me how it’s supposed to be:~

He’d be going against everything he’d ever thought or believed his entire life. He’d be betraying everyone he’d ever cared about, everyone that mattered. Except perhaps himself. And that was really the crux of the matter, wasn’t it? Any options he considered would be his own, for his own reasons, for his own benefit. No longer was he just a Malfoy, just a Slytherin, just a Death Eater. He was Draco and he had no one to betray but himself.

It didn’t matter what either side would think, so long as he stopped seeing the Headmaster plummeting off the tower, so long as he stopped hearing the old man’s words echoing in his dreams, so long as he stopped hearing Rosmerta’s screams for freedom drifting through his mind. It didn’t matter. But he did. The cold, slimy feeling he got in his gut when he thought of the things he’d done for the Dark Lord, that mattered.

And so did the stupid Muggles and mudbloods and blood traitors that might not be traitors after all. The bodies that would line the streets of Dove Town and Trenton Village and the other places that were being plotted against and prepared for attack, they mattered. They mattered more, perhaps, than the people around him, the people he’d grown up with and learned to respect and now, to despise.

He swallowed the rising bile at the thought. Faceless mudbloods mattered more than the mother that had taught him never to cry, never to flinch at the screams his father taught him to inflict. It was a betrayal of his grooming to think it, but it was, just maybe, a betrayal of himself and the batty old fool who’d thought to save him and his family to not think it, to not do it.

Yes it was a greater betrayal, he said again and again as he put quill to parchment and tied the scraps of paper to a random messenger owl. He had to do this, had to do this or risk a far greater betrayal. He had to send the owl off towards the enemy he’d fought for so long in order to destroy the force he’d always thought himself a proud member of.

He had to do it, he said to himself as he dropped the shrunken trunk of belongings into the pocket of his robe and disapperated with a quiet pop. He had to do it, and he would. No matter what he was supposed to do, no matter who Draco Malfoy was supposed to be, he would choose his own option, his own future. And he wouldn’t look back.

~:The only one
The only one who’s
Drowning in their misery:~

How did she go about being other than what the monks had made her? How did she become her own person? She had to believe it was possible. If she didn’t she’d give up, because it wouldn’t matter what she did. It would make a hell of an excuse, and she probably would have used it with abandon at one point in her life, if only she had thought of these questions when it would have been useful and not confusing on a depressing scale. ‘It’s not my fault I missed curfew, the monks made me inconsiderate of household rules.’ It would have been nice once, she supposed. Now nice was not the adjective she would use to describe it.

Now she had to know who she was outside the life the monks had placed her into, beyond the girl they had made her and everyone else think she was. Who was she? She wasn’t the key anymore, which was a relief in that her blood was no longer a supernatural black market commodity, but neither was she something or someone useful, with a purpose and meaning to others beyond the watchers’ errand girl.

Dawn stopped in the middle of the hallway of the small hotel she was currently occupying while she transported whatever talisman or witchy ingredients Giles or Willow had dubbed too volatile or dangerous to be sent to headquarters all by its lonesome. As if collecting slayers wasn’t enough. She shook her head, running her latest morose thoughts through her head once more. Was she actually complaining that she was no longer capable of the mystical Armageddon the monks had packaged her against? Was she bemoaning a lack of monk-made purpose within her Dawnie packaging? The young woman ran a hand through her hair. Self-questioning introspection was one thing, which given her circumstances was pretty reasonable, but this was taking it too far.

She nodded her head sharply. Yes sir. Too far. She was Dawn Summers, whoever that was. She was not a product of some stupid order of monks. At least not anymore. She may not have a created-from-a-ball-of-energy date stamped on her memories or experiences, thoughts or emotions, but whenever that mysterious date might have been, it wasn’t today. It wasn’t yesterday either, but it certainly wasn’t today, therefore it was safe to say that from now on, she was not living a monk-minted memory. She was living a Dawn experienced memory. That meant that if her personality was a product of experiences, everything shaped by today on would be without the influence or interference of monks. If she thought about the lingering impression her early memories, definitely monk-made, had on her today she’d go nuts. So, she wouldn’t. She would shape her life based on today and tomorrow.

From now on, she’d create her own Dawnie. She’d look forward, look towards who she was becoming, and try her best not to look back at what she may or may not have been, or think about what she was supposed to have been or done when the monks had been writing the script.

~:‘Cause I’m packing my bags
And I won’t be back
Packing my bags
‘Cause I don’t wanna be:~

The End

You have reached the end of "Supposed to Be". This story is complete.

StoryReviewsStatisticsRelated StoriesTracking