Wizard Meets Slayer
Chapter 1: Wizard Meets Slayer
The Beetle gave a cough as I pulled into the only motel in Sunnydale, California. My poor old car didn’t seem pleased about driving two thousand miles in two days, but there wasn’t much choice. My bampire half-brother, Thomas, had heard that some of Marva’s servants were planning to use the Hellmouth to resurect their master. That couldn’t be allowed to happen, not if I wanted to continue breathing, so off I went with a map, a name, and an address for a place called the Magic Box.
It was nearing dusk when I checked into my motel room, and I took a moment to wonder at the folly of wandering about the hellmouth at night, especiall with all three courts of vampires out for my blood, in every possible sense of the phrase. However, I didn’t exactly have a history of smart decisions. While wisdom was a highly common trait amoung wizards, that didn’t mean we never did something stupid. I asked the motel clerk for directions, and hopped back into the Beetle. At least I wasn’t stupid enough to walk the streets here.
I was driving past the third cemetary when I saw a young firl fighting off several men. Now, the smart thing to do would have been to keep driving, and perhaps notify the local police of the situation. But, I was a gentleman, and I couldn’t leave this poor girl without help. I pulled the Beetle to the side of the road, and only took enough time to grab my fire staff from the back seat before I ran to her rescue. As I reached the struggle, I froze in my tracks as on of the attackers turned to dust inches from me. No one seemed to notice as I stood there auestruck, watching this tiny blond girl easily dispatch her attackers, moving with a grace beyond anything I had ever seen. Even Morgan, the most graceful warrior I had ever met, did not move this effortlessly. She was pure poetry in the way she moved, as if she were dancing more than fighting for her life.
I only realized she was aware of my presence when she spun towards me, stopping with a wooden stake a breath away from my chest.
“Yes, and I’d like to stay that way, if you don’t mind.” I looked pointedly at the stake still held to my chest, and then raised an eyebrow as I looked directly into her forehead.
“Hmm, that might be a possibility. Who are you?”
“I’m Harry. And who might you be?”
“Buffy. You’re not from around here, are you?”
I smiled. “No, I’m not. How could you tell?”
She rolled her eyes and grined a bit. “Well, for starters, This place doesn’t have a very big population, and it gets smaller every day. If you lived around here, I’d have seen you around, even if we’d never met. Plus, not a lot of white knight types around here. More of the painfully unaware of anything that happens type.”
That made sense. People tend to rationalize things they don’t understand, or don’t what to know about. It would stand to reason that on a hellmouth the instinct would be much stronger.
“Well, then what brings such a beautiful young lady out here , being acosted by vampires in this lovely cemetary?”
She looked a bit surprised at the question. I could tell she was about to attempt to hide something, but when she responded I had to fight not to laugh at her explaination.
“Vampires? What vampires? The are no vampires here. Those were, uh, gang members. Yeah, gang members on, uh, pcp.” She actualy said this with a straight face, trying to catch my eye, which I avoided. Wizards do not often look people in the eyes, and there is good reason for it. They say eyes are the window to the soul, and that is truer than most realize, especially for a wizard. When a wizard looks directly into a person eyes, they see that persons soul. You don’t see all their memories, but you see enough to know them, what kind of person they are. The other side of that problem is that they see yours as well. Its not the type of experience I want to share with many people I know, much less strangers. I am no longer certain what someone would see in me during a soulgaze, and I was in no hurry to find out.
“Well, Buffy, since when do ‘gang members’ explode into dust?”
She looked a bit embarassed for a moment, but covered the expression quickly.
“Noticed that, did you. So, what are you? Some freaky human looking demon or something?” This time I did laugh. She was actually serious.
“Demon? No, not at all. I’m a wizard.”
“No, not evil”
“Okay, Buffy. Same question. What exactly are you?”
“College student?” She made it sound like a question, obvious that she was trying to avoid a real answer. Which made me want the real answer even more.
“What are you really”
She seemed to think about it for a minute before shrugging. “Vampire Slayer. Why are you trying so hard to avoid my eyes?”
I don’t know, maybe because I don’t want to accidentally share a soulgaze with a total stranger who can take out that many vampires with nothing but a bit of wood? Out loud I said, “Wizard thing.”
“Riiight.” She had this knowing little smile, calling me a liar without saying a word. “So, Harry the Wizard, what brings you to good old Sunnyhell?”
“Vampires, actually. I was told to see a man called Rupert Giles. You wouldn’t know him, would you?”
“Yep, I know Giles.”
“Great. Any chance you could help me locate him?”
“Not a chance.” Well, I didn’t expect things to be easy, did I.
“Could you tell me why?”
“Sure. I don’t have a clue who you really are. A name, and the wizard bit, doesn’t tell me anything about you. I’m not gonna play tour guide for some guy who might end up being some psycho trying to destroy the world or something. What do you want with Giles?”
“Once upon a time there was a very powerful vampire names Marva. She was an evil undead psychopath, and a friend and I killed her. Her sevants were not at all happy with her being truly dead, so they decided to go to the hellmouth to use its energy to resurect her. If that happens, a lot of innocent people are going to die, along with me. I don’t want that to happen, so I’m here to stop it. I need Mr. Giles’ knowledge of the hellmouth to figure out how they might be able to bring her back so that I can prevent it from happening. Now, can you please take me to see this Mr. Giles?”
“No. But I’ll talk to him. You meet me back here tommorrow night, and we’ll talk. If Giles says its okay, I’ll take you to him then.”
“I do have the address for the Magic Box, and I was told he owns it. I could just go there myself.”
“Sorry, closed for the weekend. You don’t want to show up there while its closed. And you don’t want to try to find him on your own until I talk to him and he says you’re okay.”
“And why is that?”
“Because it would upset me.” She closed the distance between us so that she was close enough I couldn’t avoid her eyes. “You don’t want to upset me, do you Harry?”
I took a step back before we could get caught in a soulgaze. I would have to give her the day. If tommorrow night she didn’t give me a location, I would have to find Mr. Giles on my own. But, I didn’t want to piss this girl off. I knew about slayers. They didn’t normally jurt humans, but I didn’t want to piss her off and take that chance.
“Alright. Tommorrow then.”
“I need a last name.”
I hesitated a moment. Names were power. I didn’t know if she was connected to any others capable of magic, and giving her my name was dangerous. But I had four names, so I could give her a second with relative safety. “Dresden. Harry Dresden.”
“Buffy Summers. Tommorow then, Harry Dresden.”