Title: Chapter 5
Series: H.S. or J.P.
Disclaimer: BtVS-Joss Whedon & Harry Potter-J.K. Rowling
A/N: I have a bad tooth and am currently hopped up on Vicidin; if this goes completely off the wall, somebody please, let me know.
"Don't." Giles grabs James's arm to hold him back. "She's fine."
"There are five vampires." James tries to jerk away from Ripper, wanting to go help his daughter.
"Five's no problem for her." Cordy says.
"Yeah." Xander holds a bag out to Buffy's dad. "Chip?"
James glares at him.
"Xander, why did you bring food?" Giles questions curiously, reaching into the bag to take a few chips. "And why do you always get barbeque?"
"Because." Xander replies. "They're my favorite."
"We can't just stand here and let her fight them alone." Remus says to Rupert, shocked at the sight of the teenager fighting five vampires alone.
"Buffy!" Xander yells.
"Yeah?" Buffy uppercuts a short, bald vampire and then ducks down to avoid being kicked by a taller blonde one. She swipes out her right leg and trips two of the five and then bounces back to her feet.
"Need any help?" Xander asks.
"She's fine." Xander tells the werewolf.
"Damn, she's good." Sirius whistles.
James nods his agreement, his mouth dropped open as he watches his daughter fight. He knows he hasn't been around at all in the past three years but he can't believe the changes in his daughter. The intenseness that was never there before. He's never seen anybody move the way she is right now. She effortlessly knocks back various opponents, her legs and arms moving faster than should be humanly possible.
Giles watches Buffy fight, concern furrowing his brow. She has gotten better in the months she's been gone, unbelievably better. But there's something there that wasn't there before; an anger he's never seen. Unlike her normal slaying technique, she doesn't take one done and then move on. Now, she just fights them; ruthlessly pummeling five vampires concurrently as opposed to staking even one of them.
Cordy glances down at her watch, tapping her foot impatiently. "Okay, this is boring."
"You're currently in a graveyard where there are vampires and you're bored?" Sirius asks the teenager. "Are you mad?"
"She's taking too long." Cordy complains. "It never takes her this long."
"She's right." Giles agrees. "Buffy."
"Kinda in the middle of something." Buffy pushes off the ground with her right foot and does a perfect butterfly kick, her body spinning in midair and her feet kicking three of the five vampires a few feet back. She lands in crouch and jumps straight in the air to avoid one of the vampires diving at her. "Can I get back to you?"
"Enough." Giles orders. "Finish it."
Buffy sighs and looks over at her watcher. "I was having fun."
"Buffy!" James yells.
Buffy looks back just in time to be kick across the face, hard. She flies backwards, her back hitting a large tombstone with a crack. She flings her legs out in a scissoring motion at the approaching vampire and jumps to her feet, a small smile on her face. "You wanna play?"
"I want dinner." The vampire growls. "And I've always wanted to eat a slayer."
"And I always wanted piano lessons." Buffy slams her face into his, enjoying the shout of pain and the feel of his bones breaking under her forehead. "Looks like neither one of us will get what we want." She pulls her head back and brings her knee up to hit his face, reaching into her boot at the same time and pulling out stake. "See ya in hell." She slams the stake into his heart and moves on before he's even dust.
James feels Remus and Sirius put their hands on his shoulders and is completely grateful for the support. She enjoys it; in fact, this is the only time she's had a real smile on her face since she got her. She kills three of the four remaining without even breaking stride, faster than he can even process.
Buffy cusses loudly, having lost her stake in the fourth vamp. The remaining one, though he looks scared shitless, charges at her and she jumps to the side, planting her foot on his back to push him into a tombstone. "A stake would be nice."
Giles fumbles into his pocket, a little startled that she only brought one stake with her. "Xander?"
"Yeah, give me a second." Xander hands the bag of chips to Cordy and starts digging through his pockets.
"Screw that." Buffy trips the vampire, his head hitting the top of the tombstone with a grunt. She plants her boot on his neck, grabs his long, greasy hair and rips his head off.
"Ugh." Cordy gags. "That was gross."
Buffy walks towards them, clapping her hands to get the dust off them. "But it works."
"Are you okay?" James grabs his daughter, running his hands over her to assure himself she's fine.
"Dad, it was just five vamps." Buffy brushes off his concern and grabs the bag of chips out of Cordy's hands.
"Five vampires which you saw the need to pummel into a bloody pulp before you staked them." Giles scolds.
"Come on, Giles." Buffy rolls her eyes. "I put my life on the line; shouldn't I get a little fun out of it?"
"That was fun?" James runs a hand through his hair.
"Yes, major fun." Buffy holds out a chip to him. "Hungry?"
"No." James grunts.
Buffy shrugs and pops the chip into her mouth. "Okay, you can come out now."
"Who are you talking to, Potter?" Severus sneers, his arms crossed over his chest as he glares at Willow.
"My lovely brother." Buffy holds the bag out to him. "And his little group of friends. Want one?"
Severus just glares at her.
"They're not poisonous." Willow glares at him. "And we're not stupid."
"You stood in a graveyard, waiting for vampires to attack you." Severus's tone never changes but it's not hard to see the anger in his eyes.
"Which we did all the time in Sunnydale." Willow says. "And hello, hellmouth so much more dangerous than England."
Buffy walks away from the group, crunching down on the chips happily. She stops a few yards away and spins around, her foot coming up in the air.
"Ron Weasley!" James scolds, jogging over and grabbing something out of midair. Harry, Ron, Draco and Blaise had some how managed to hide under his old cloak though looking at it, he can tell somebody place an enlargement charm on it.
Ron swallows heavily, Buffy's foot only centimeters from his forehead. "You missed."
"I don't miss." Buffy drops her leg down. "I was never going to kick you, duh, you're my brother's best friend. And you're human; Giles has got this big thing about hurting humans."
"What are you four doing here?" James demands.
"And what is this?" Xander takes the cloak thing out of Buffy's dad's hand and wraps it around himself.
"You're invisible." Cordy says.
"That is so cool." Xander pulls he cloak down until his head is revealed. "Hey Buffy, heads up."
"Man, I would love to have one of these." Xander gushes, looking down at his invisible body. "Imagine all the good I could do."
"Please." Cordy snorts. "If you had one of those things, the only thing you would do is hang out in the girl's locker room."
"Protecting the girls." Xander grins.
"Yeah, I'm sure that's what you'd do." Buffy says. "But you know, that thing could come in handy. Imagine how easy it would be to sneak into a vamp nest?"
James yanks the cloak off Xander. "Don't even think about it, Buffy."
"Lighten up, dad." Buffy interlocks her arm with his and leans her head against his shoulder. "You're taking this whole thing too seriously."
"It is serious, Buffy." James wraps an arm over Harry's shoulder as he talks to his daughter.
"I've been slaying for three years." Buffy holds the bag out to her brother. "I know what I'm doing."
"So, are we going somewhere else?" Willow asks curiously.
"Naw." Buffy replies. "I cleaned out the biggest nest last night and I'll do another pass later on."
"Another pass?" James questions though he's pretty sure he doesn't want to know.
"A quick patrol." Buffy explains. "A little while before sunrise; it's when all the vamps stumble home, bellies full of blood."
"Do you normally patrol that much?" Remus questions, moving onto the other side of Sirius, still a little uncomfortable around Buffy.
"At home, I would patrol right as the sunset, then come home and eat dinner with mom and Dawn, patrol again right after dinner when mom was doing the dishes and stuff, come home and do my homework, patrol again while mom was getting Dawn ready for bed, pretend to go to bed, and then take another pass before I actually went to bed." Buffy replies. "Giles usually had me training for about an hour or so right after school and I would sometimes train with Angel. Angel would take my last pass for me a lot of the time so I could get an extra hour of sleep."
James's arm tightens around Buffy's.
"It was the hellmouth, dad." Buffy reminds him. "For like every five humans, there's a vamp. And it's not like I patrolled like that every single night, usually only four or five nights a week, depending on if there was a big bad around."
"And a big bad would be what precisely?" Remus questions.
"Whatever demon, vamp, or other that was trying to kill us." Willow explains. "Outside of the normal, run of the mill vampires that are around, there's usually something else that is stronger and….more ballsy than the normal vamps."
"They actually attack us on our own turf and or attempt to end the world." Buffy holds the bag of chips back to Xander.
"Thank you." Xander grabs the chips and reaches for one. "Hey!"
"Come on, Xander, what did you expect?" Buffy looks over her shoulder at him. "You know how much I eat."
"But you didn't even leave me the crumbs." Xander balls the bag up and stuffs it into his pocket.
"Sorry." Buffy apologizes with a yawn. "My bad."
"Buffy, how much are you sleeping?" Giles asks as they're led back into the headquarters. "You've yawned five times in the ten minutes it took to walk here."
"Enough." Buffy breaks away from her father and grabs Willow's arm.
"Buffy." Giles warns.
Buffy ignores him.
"Buffy, I think you made Giles mad." Xander whispers, popping his head between the two girls.
"Naw, he's not mad yet." Buffy replies.
"He hasn't done the tongue clicking thing." Willow points out.
"What tongue clicking thing would that be, Miss Rosenberg?" Dumbledore questions, his eyes sparkling with mirth.
"You know, that clucking thing he does when he's being too British and repressed to say that he's mad." Willow explains. "Sev glares and Giles clicks his tongue; Buffy's dad just seems to yell a lot. I'm pretty sure that has a lot to do with him living in L.A. for like fourteen years or so and his stuffy side being all dormant with the magical memory washage."
"I'm going to be honest and say I didn't understand most of that." Remus is the first one to speak.
Severus glares at Willow.
Willow glares back.
"It's kinda cute." Buffy comments with a grin. "All that fire."
Willow spins around, her eyes wide. "What fire? There's no fire. No siree, no fire here."
"Yeah." Buffy agrees sarcastically. "And I never shared the passion with Angel."
"Buffy, I asked you a question." Giles stomps towards his slayer. "How much are you sleeping a night."
"Giles, I'm fine." Buffy turns to face him.
"No, you're clearly not." Giles argues. "You've lost weight, your eyes have what look to be permanent bags under them, and your complete disregard to your own safety while slaying…."
"Isn't that like the most ironic statement ever?" Buffy interrupts. "Safety while slaying? When is it safe, Giles? When I'm being electrocuted? When I'm being drowned? When I'm fighting night after night for a world that doesn't even know I exist? You've lectured me time and time again about needing to embrace my calling and the second I do, you get down on me about it."
"You're giving up." Giles shouts. "This isn't about your calling or about any of that. It's about Angel. You're letting yourself get careless because it's easier than trying to move on. He's gone, Buffy…"
"And you're loving that." Buffy interrupts again, her eyes blazing. "Every damn of you except for Dawn and possibly Willow is glad he's gone. And I'm trying to cope with it in the only way I know how."
"By losing yourself in the slayer?" Giles whispers. "Until everything that makes you you is just a warrior?"
Buffy shrugs. "I'm doing the best that I can, Giles."
"I know." Giles sighs, running a hand through his hair. "I just worry."
"I know." Buffy steps forward and wraps her arms around her watcher. "I'm sorry for making you worry so much."
"It's what you do." Giles pulls back to examine her face. "You need a good night's sleep."
"I try." Buffy says. "But I keep having dreams.
"Do they do that often?" Harry questions Willow curiously, bending his head towards the redhead, grinning at the glare his former professor sends him.
"Argue, yeah." Willow casts a look at her best friend, seeing all the things Giles pointed out.
"Though Giles is usually riding her about slacking off in the slaying not overslaying." Xander points out.
"True." Willow agrees.
"I don't know if they're slayer dreams." Buffy says, plopping down onto the couch her mom is sitting on. She curls her legs under herself and leans her head on her mom's shoulder.
James sits down on his daughter's other side. "What are slayer dreams?"
"Buffy, at times, has prophetic dreams." Giles turns to look at his cousin. "I need some parchment and a quill."
"I have some." Hermione says as her, Ginny, and Luna walk into the room. "I was using it to take notes but you can use the bottom portion, if you like."
"Thank you." Giles takes them from her and grabs a book to write on. "Now, Buffy, what exactly happens in these dreams."
"Giles, they're not demon-y dreams." Buffy says.
Giles clicks his tongue.
"Fine." Buffy rolls her eyes. "There's a couple of them. In one, it's daytime and I'm on the beach and Angel walks up behind me. He wraps his arms around me and rests his head on my shoulder. I say something about him being gone and he says he would always find me, even if he was deaf and blind, he would find me. Then he says even if he's dead, he would find me."
"If that's not stalkerish." Xander mutters.
James nods his agreement.
Buffy ignore them both. "In another, we're dancing at the Bronze and my ring falls off. Angel bends down to grab it and squeezes it tightly. His hand starts pouring and then his….where the sword ended up starts bleeding. I say I'm sorry and he tells me to go to hell. Then his face decays and he laughs and says I did."
Joyce strokes her daughter's hair.
"He hates me." Buffy whispers.
"Angel?" Giles asks.
"Buffy, Angel doesn't hate you." Giles assures her. "He isn't capable of that emotion towards you."
"Giles, I sent him to hell." Buffy reminds him. "That warrants some hate."
"You didn't have a choice." Giles says. "Angel knows you well enough to know you wouldn't hurt him unless you didn't have a choice."
"You didn't see his face." Buffy argues. "The betrayal in his eyes."
"Whatever he was feeling, it wasn't betrayal." Willow says. "Buffy, Angel practically worshipped you."
"I'll be the first to admit I hated deadboy." Xander speaks up. "But I know he loved you."
"I hate going to sleep." Buffy whispers. "And I love it at the same time because for those few minutes, I can feel him."
"Hmmm." Giles glances down at the parchment he's written off.
"Hmmm, what?" Buffy prods. "Don't leave me hanging."
"It's just a general hmm." Giles says. "Not something to concern yourself with." He then turns to look at Severus. "Do you have any dreamless sleeping draught here?"
"I believe we keep some here for Potter." Severus replies evenly. "I'll go get a vial."
"Which Potter?" Willow asks. "Cuz technically, there's like four of them now."
"Me." Harry says. "Voldermort can, at times, see into my dreams and I into his; we're connected you see, and I use the draught to keep him out."
"What's a draught?" Buffy asks Giles.
"It's a sleeping potion." Giles takes the vial Severus hands him. "Which you will be taking."
"Giles." Buffy whines.
Giles hands it to her. "You need a good night's rest, Buffy."
Buffy takes the vial with a pout.
"And don't think pouting is going to get to me because it won't." Giles averts his eyes from her. "It's not working."
"Fine." Buffy huffs, rising to her feet. "But I'd like to point the fact that I'm quite capable of deciding my bedtime."
Giles clicks his tongue.
Buffy rolls her eyes and stomps out of the room.
"How did…she listens to you better than she listens to me." Joyce looks between the retreating back of her daughter and Rupert, unable to believe how her normally stubborn daughter followed his demands with almost no arguing.
"She normally doesn't listen to me either." Giles is also a little surprised that she didn't argue as much as she normally does.
"Maybe she knows you're right, Mr. Giles." Hermione suggests.
"Perhaps." Giles agrees.
Willow leans over Giles's shoulder, squinting her eyes to read his tiny printing. "No, you don't really think…"
"Must you read over my shoulder?" Giles interrupts.
"I must." Willow grins at the watcher.
Giles rolls his eyes.
"You don't really think Buffy's dreams mean Angel is going to come back, do you?" Willow whispers quietly.
James sits up at the question, his arm moving to rest of Joyce's shoulder. "You think the vampire is coming back?"
"For your daughter's sake, you should address him as Angel." Giles replies. "And I'm not sure."
"But that's what you wrote." Hermione points out, also reading over his shoulder.
"Yes, but it's just a theory." Giles rips off the part he wrote on and hands her the remainder of the parchment. "It's highly unlikely and even if he does….time moves faster in hell dimensions. What's been months here will be hundreds of years there. Hundreds of years of torture. To survive through that and retain any semblance of self would require a creature of extraordinary strength. Most likely, he would be a mindless animal."
"Speaking of." Sirius looks at Molly, trying to change the subject off something he can tell his best friend doesn't like. "Molly, would you like to hear what these young lads were up to?"
"Master." Bellatrix Lestrange kneels and kisses Voldemort's hand. "They failed."
"I knew they would." Voldemort sighs.
"The other slayer and her watcher have returned to the hellmouth." Bella says.
"Leave them be for the time being." Voldemort stands up, gesturing for her to follow. "Right now, my focus is on the other slayer, young Potter's sister."
"Master, I'm not questioning your orders." Bella begins.
"By speaking, you are." Voldemort points out. "But continue on if you wish."
"I just don't understand why we're focusing on the slayer." Bella says.
"Dear Harry's strength relies in those he loves and trusts." Voldemort flings open the dungeon door with nothing more than a thought, disgust filling his frame at his own words. "The mudblood and his father are the basis of that strength. If they tumble down, so will Harry."
"And by killing his daughters and wife, you will be destroying James Potter." Understanding dawns on Bella.
"And one step closer to destroying Harry." Voldemort flings open the door to the room he wants and gestures for her to walk in front of him.
Bella, having not been in the room he's opening to her, walks in with big, curious eyes. The room is rather large, about thirty meters on each side, and the back is portioned off with metal bars. There are two separate cells and she smiles at the sight of what's in the first one. On the ground, one dirty, long finger-nailed hand reaching out helplessly between the bars, is Pettigrew. A very dead Pettigrew. His neck is ripped open but almost no blood is spilled out. She glances over at the other cage when she hears whimpering. Two girls, both in their late teens, are huddled together in the farthest corner, shaking with pure fear.
"What are they…."
An animalistic growl interrupts her question and she jumps back with fear as a body slams itself against the bars, pale skin sprinkled with blood. She hears her master laugh at her fright but pays him no mind as she studies the creature. It's male but not human, from the looks of his face, she knows it's a vampire. He's naked expect for the tattered pants that barely cling to his hips.
"A vampire?" Bella questions.
"Not just any vampire." Voldemort replies, smirking at his latest find. "This creature's viciousness is well known."
"He's mad." Bella points out.
"Yes, quite so." Voldemort agrees. "I'm not sure why either but no worries, he won't stay that way for long."
"Where did he come from?" Bella asks.
"I summoned him." Voldemort replies. "I believe he was on the hellmouth so that might explain his….insanity. Perhaps pulling him from there altered something. He will join our side, once he's sane of course, and relieve us of our slayer problem."
"And the girls?" Bella squints to make them out. "Parkinson and…"
"Katie Bell." Voldemort supplies. "She was friends with Potter in school."
"Oh." Bella takes the arm he holds out to her.
"Come." Voldemort orders. "We'll return once he's fed." He then waves a hand at the cage, removing the bars separating the two.
The last thing Bella sees as they walk out, is the rippling of a tattoo as the vampire runs into the other cage.