Title: It’s All in the Genes
Summary: While investigating an incident in London, Buffy finds that she and Dawn aren’t the only women in their family who have a tendency to find weird things. *Be warned, there’s not point. Just a little one-shot*
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Joss owns BtVS. BBC owns Doctor Who. Just playing with the characters for my own twisted amusement.
AN: Being American, I don’t know a lot about Dr. Who. But they started showing the new series on Sci-fi and, though I’ve only seen two episodes, I can already tell I’m going to be hooked. This little plot bunny popped into my head while I was watching the premiere and kind comes from the fact that, for some reason, I think Rose looks like she could be related to Buffy and Dawn. I dunno. Anyway, this is just a little one-shot for right now. Might expand on the idea later on when I’ve seen more the series. Right now, there’s no real point to this, but it just wouldn’t leave me alone until I wrote. *shrug*
Okay, on with the story.
Her family was cursed. Oh, yeah, Giles would say she was being overly dramatic or whatever, but it didn’t make this fact any less...fact-y. They were cursed. She came from a family of cursed people. Cursed, blonde people who could find the weird...well, anywhere.
It really had to be something in the genes. Maybe after they find out exactly what kind of demon had tried to make his own version of Mannequin with every dummy in London, she would ask Giles to do a study or something. They sure had enough Slayers now for a control group - and see, she so deserved an A in Psych instead of C, thank you Dr. Walsh. But, back to the point. She really, really wanted to know whether finding weird things was something that was part of being the Slayer’s family, or just a part of her family’s genetic makeup and unique to them alone.
Buffy had the sinking feeling that it was probably going to be the latter.
Standing outside the apartment door, Buffy let out the breath she had been holding since exiting the cab. Her stomach twisted uncomfortably as she pulled at some imaginary wrinkle in her jacket. She wasn’t sure if it was she was seeing her aunt - who she didn’t really get along with - for the first time in five years, or because she was going to have to question her about the attack of the mannequins incident without sounding like she was nuts or hiding something, or if it was the special dinner that Xander had fixed for the last night. Sadly, every one of those seemed as likely a reason for her stomach ache as the next.
“You okay?” Willow asked, shifting the weight of the briefcase in her hands.
“Yeah,” Buffy said.
“Nervous?” she asked.
“Little,” Buffy said. At Willow’s question gaze, she said, “Me and Aunt Jackie don’t really get along.”
Hello, my name is Buffy, Queen of the Understatements, she thought with a frown. Ever since she burned down the school gymnasium, things between her and her Aunt Jackie had been strained at best. Buffy wasn’t sure if it was so much it was because of what she did, or the timing of when she had to do it. The same day she had set fire to the school because of the vamp’s nest in the gym also - by sure accident - happened to be the same day that her parents divorce became final. Okay, so killing a bunch of vamps had majorly helped with Buffy that day. Dealing the with consequences, however...
Her Aunt Jackie had flown over to be with Buffy’s mom during the whole divorce thing. So when Hemery had blown up, so had Jackie. Really, Buffy didn’t think that Jackie had meant to hurt her with what she said - mostly about how Joyce didn’t need to deal with this and Buffy should stop acting like a selfish brat and help her mother - but it had been said and there was no taking it back. What made it worse was that the incident led to Jackie and Joyce getting into it, which led to their estrangement. The half-sisters eventually did make up - unsurprisingly, that was after Joyce found out she had a brain tumor - but they never got a chance to see each other again after that awful summer.
“It’ll be okay,” Willow said, then knocked on the door.
Buffy bit down on her lip as she heard shuffling on the other side of the door. Well, looks like someone’s home. She just hoped that it her cousin Rose and not -
“Yes?” her Aunt Jackie said, cracking the door opened.
She had a basket of laundry balanced on her hip and Buffy could see she had tossed the cordless phone on top of the clothes. Buffy sucked in a breath. Her mom used to do that when she got a call while she was doing the laundry. Of course, Dawn does it too.
Jackie blinked once. Then twice. “Stars in heaven,” she muttered, staring at her niece. “Buffy?”
Buffy forced herself to smile. “Hi, Auntie Jackie.”
In all the years she had known Buffy, Willow had never meet any of her other relatives aside from Joyce and Dawn. Oh, she knew that Buffy had family in London - she had heard Joyce talking to Giles about it once - but she had never really heard Buffy or Dawn talk about them. Well, Willow knew that Dawn kept in contact with her cousin here, but that was about it. Even after the Scoobies had packed up and moved to Europe to help with the New Watchers Council, Buffy had ever mentioned or even appeared to entertain the idea of going to visit her relatives. Dawn did on occasion, but never Buffy.
When they found out that Jackie Tyler, Joyce’s half-sister, has been at the mall during the presumably demon possession of shop dummies in downtown London, Giles had to pull rank to force her to go talk to her Aunt. Honestly, Willow agreed that it was better if Buffy questioned her Aunt because she knew Jackie better and would know how to ask her the things they needed to know. Buffy, however, clearly didn’t agree.
She was sitting on the couch, but looked as if she were ready to jump up and leave at any give moment. Her right leg bounced up and down quickly. She chewed on her lip and glanced again and again at the kitchen Jackie had disappeared into a few minutes ago for tea. Tea, the British cure for everything
, Willow thought with a smile. Seeing her smile, Buffy raised an eyebrow. Willow coughed it away and turned back to the photos randomly displayed in the bookcase as Jackie walked back into the livingroom with a tray of tea.
“Here we are, then,” Jackie said.
There were several pictures of a blond-haired girl at various ages, but one photo drew Willow’s attention more than the others. In it, there were two young girls hugging each other tightly. Neither one could have been older than ten. They were dressed similarly in jeans and matching t-shirt, except for the colors. Their faces and eyes had a similar round shape, though the blonde girl’s eyes had a bit more tilt to them than the brunette’s.
Willow squinted at the photo. “Is that Dawn?”
Jackie handed Buffy a cup and looked up at the picture Willow was staring at. “Oh, yes. That’s her and my daughter Rose.”
“They looked a lot alike,” Willow said, taking the cup of tea Jackie offered her. “Well, except for the whole blonde hair/brow hair, brown eyes/blue eyes thing.”
“They did, didn’t they,” Jackie said fondly.
“Where is Rose, anyway?” Buffy asked, taking a sip of her tea.
“Oh, off with that boyfriend of hers, I suppose,” Jackie said. “Should be off looking for a new job. Her last one blew up, you know.”
Exchanging a confused look with Buffy, Willow asked, “Blew up?”
“Yeah,” Jackie said, as if it was common knowledge. “It was all over the telly a few days back. The department story down town that burned. Can you believe it, they’re saying it was a gas leak now instead of arson. Rose was lucky she wasn’t kill.”
“Yeah, she was,” Buffy said carefully, glancing over at Willow.
That was where they had traced the first group of demon possessed dummies back too and it had taken some major convincing from the Watchers Council to make the police final settle on a gas leak instead of arson. However, they still didn’t know who had blown the shop up. The slayers that had been on patrol in that area had sworn that they didn’t do it, but whoever did had to have known about the dummies. There was no other reason to blow up a department store. At least not one that they could think of.
“Good news is, she can be compensated. Just has to fill out some forms and send them in,” Jackie went on, either missing the look between the friends or ignoring it. She paused for a moment as if to consider something, then asked, “Do you reckon I could to, being that I was attacked in the shopping center the other night. Their job to keep us safe, inn’t it? I should get something for the trouble. Oh, but you don’t know about that, do you?”
Overdoing the surprise a bit, Buffy quickly leaned forward. “No. What happened?”
Willow kept a smile at bay.
And they thought that getting Jackie Tyler to talk was going to be hard.
Buffy groaned loudly and tossed the Watcher’s diary back onto the table. She hated those things. Was it like some unwritten Watcher rule that you must use the longest words they can find to describe stuff? Really, why use ‘somehow overcoming insuperable odds’ when you can just say ‘overcoming impossible odds’? Same thing, no dictionary required.
To bad Jackie didn’t have any more information for them. As far as she was concerned, though, it was just what the police were saying. Or, what the Watcher Council told the police to keep saying. She was attacked by a gang on PCP wearing Halloween mask. Really, Buffy had to give it to Snyder. For a short, annoying, evil, hair-envious Nazi who took motivational advice from Stalin, he did have a good idea when he came up with the whole ‘PCP Gang’ thing.
It never ceased to amaze Buffy how many people eagerly excepted that explanation, no questions asked, after encountering something weird. So far this year, the same rogue gang of PCP users had been used to cover up three vampire attacks, a group of ves’leel demons attacking people in a nearby park, and the deaths of two college students who stumbled upon a vampire’s nest in a warehouse near the docks. And now they have attacked several shopping centers and malls dressed up as mannequins and shooting people with their hands. Since it was only March, that’s one busy gang. But, people still bought it, so why not go with it.
Since Jackie and none of the other survivors could tell them anything more than they already knew, Giles had them all hitting the books to see exactly what kind of demon or wizard or mage or whatever that could do something like this. So far, they’ve come up with a bunch of nothing, with nada in the index. The best they could come up with that maybe it was some kind of spell that had gone wonky, but that didn’t explain the whole five finger six-shooter thing.
This was just too weird. Even for them.
The good news was that she and her Aunt Jackie actually had a civil conversation, the first one in years. Buffy knew her mom would be proud. Joyce hated it when she and Jackie fought, and hated it even more when Buffy and Jackie had gotten into it. Today’s visit was good. Maybe she would take Dawn out to see them the next time she came to visit from college. Dawn and Rose had always been close and Buffy knew they would loved to see each other. Yeah, she would do that.
In the meantime, though, she needed to get back to finding out who created the dummy army and how to kill it. Yeah, they may be safe for now, but if they ever came back, knowing what caused the walking display models and how to destroy it would be way helpful.
“You guys got anything yet?” Buffy asked, glancing around the table.
Willow looked up from her computer screen and shrugged. “Nothing here,” she said. “Sorry.”
The pair turned their attention to Xander. “Sorry, Buff. Nothing in here either,” he said, holding up the book he had - supposedly - been reading.
“What about you, Andrew?” Buffy asked.
The former ex-‘super villain’ glanced up from his book, surprise written across his face. “Huh?”
Buffy suppressed the urge to roll her eyes. Why didn’t it surprise her that he wasn’t paying attention? What was she saying? Star Trek, Dragon Ball Z, and comic books weren’t involved. Of course Andrew wouldn’t be paying attention.
“The living mannequins,” Buffy said slowly. “You know, the thing we’re supposed to researching. That’s why we have Giles’ books out, remember.”
Andrew frowned. “I know,” he said with a pout. “It’s just...these books are boring.”
“And you’ve been a Watcher for how long? And you’re just now figuring out ‘Watcher books boring?” Xander asked.
“But I thought by now it would be cool and all system like,” Andrew whined. “You know, like Giles would be all like Dr. Daniel Jackson and could tell us exactly what we needed to know and we’d sit around the table discussing the options. And Buffy would make witty remarks to keep things interesting while Giles goes on and on. Then, you guys would gather your weapons and go kill things.”
Buffy tilted her head. “Who’s Dr. Daniel Jackson?”
Scandalized, Andrew sputtered, “Who’s Daniel Jackson? Who is Daniel Jackson? He’s-he’s just a member of Stargate SG-1, one of the greatest sci-fi shows to ever have graced both the silver and small screen. It’s right up there with Next Generation! And you ask who he is?” He quickly turned his attention to Xander. “Have you taught them nothing, man?”
“What can I say, they just never did appreciate good television,” Xander said with a playful shrug.
Buffy snorted while Willow just rolled her eyes. Picking up the book she had been reading, Buffy tossed it at Andrew and said, “Just keep reading or you can kiss the Sci-Fi Channel and Cartoon Network goodbye.”
“Yes, Ma’am,” Andrew said, opening the book and dipping low behind it so she could no longer see him.
Grabbing another book at random, Buffy began to flip through the pages. The book - Zombies and Animated Corpses in Modern History (1818-1930): The Unabridged Version
- she had chosen might actually have something useful, so she began to read. Her eyes scanned through the pages quickly, since she had long ago trained herself how to search out just the important or relevant stuff instead of all the fodder the Watchers liked to add to apparently just fill up space. Most of it wasn’t of any use, just repeat of what ever other book she had read had said, but this one had pictures in the later chapters. Oh, joy. Just what she wanted to see. A bunch of flesh eating Zombies in hoop-skirts and top -
Buffy paused and scrunched her eyebrows as she stared at one photo. No, it couldn’t be. She quickly read the caption under the picture, which just caused her frown to grow. On Christmas Eve of 1869, reanimated corpses were reported walking the streets of Cardiff. However, these sightings could not be substantiated since by the time the Watchers Council became involved, the funeral home the corpses seemed to have been drawn too had been destroyed. Details of this night are still unclear.
Pictured: The remains of the funeral home. Onlookers: the author Charles Dickens, Rose Tyler, and the Doctor.
“Giles!” Buffy yelled, slamming the book closed and startling her companions.
God, her family really was cursed.
AN: Okay, like I said, not much point to this. And I know that the last part is probably a bit off for Ep. 3 of Doctor Who, but I haven’t seen it yet and I’m just going by what little I’ve allowed myself to read about what happens. If it’s off, please forgive me. And hopefully if I write another instalment of this, there will be more plot to the next one. :)