Disclaimer: I own nothing. You know that.
Ok, as I said, Fic-A-Thon response for Dulcinea. If i said I'm satified with htis thing, I would be lying. But I like it and I think it won't get any better anymore, so please deal with me.
Here are the requirements (bold is what I got):
LIST THREE BTVS/ATS MAJOR CHARACTERS:
Spike (Well, there's second hand Spike)
LIST AT LEAST THREE OF THE ABOVE GENRES THAT YOU'D BE TICKLED TO RECEIVE:Anita Blake
, Stargate, Harry Potter, Doctor Who
LIST THREE THINGS YOU WANT IN YOUR FIC: 1) Stand-alone, so that its
completely finished and isn't just a chapter in someone's larger fic.
2) Somehow explain a character quirk that shows up in the series- like a
Giles' phobias in the dream sequence, or why would Oz suggest hummus as a
way to take down the mayor?
(Well, if you consider that a quirk, then it's explained. I tried, Ok?)
(Again with the trying.)
LIST THREE THINGS YOU DON'T WANT IN YOUR FIC: 1) Character bashing
2)Angst- I've got enough in my own life, thank you very much,
3) bad grammer/spelling.
Oh, yeah and here's the fic. Unbeta-ed, from my fingers to your eyes. Have fun.The Power of Words
Jason slammed the car door shut behind him with a little more force than necessary - or healthy - at least for the door. Sometimes he still forgot that he had a fair chance at beating an elephant at arm wrestling, these days. Sighing tiredly he locked the car and made his way into the restaurant, wondering, not for the first time, why he was doing this.Right
, he thought, I’m doing Anita a favor. The... fourth this week.
After the complete fiasco that had been the ballet last month, the animator had decided that they needed to set up a system to weed out the pomme de sang
candidates that had no chance in the first place. In a moment of insanity, Jason had said out loud that what Anita needed was someone who knew her and could meet all the potential food sources for her so she only had to met the most-likely-to-not-drive-her-up-the-wall-every-other-minute-ones.
The second the words had left his mouth, he’d known that that was it. He was dead. He was so dead.
Since then he’d met exactly 14 candidates for Anita’s bed and not a single one had managed to get past the first round. Slowly, ever so slowly, the good natured and easy going werewolf was getting a tad bit annoyed. Hence the door slamming. And the growling at the nice lady that wanted to show him to his table.
Sending her an apologetic smile he offered, “Blake. Table for two.” At least Anita was paying for his ‘dates’. The waitress nodded and showed him to a small booth, far enough from the main crowd to be comfy. He took his seat, gave her another smile, this time more flirtatious. She smiled back shyly and left to bring him some much needed wine.
Barely ten minutes later the waitress returned with a short man in tow. He looked like he was about as tall as Jason himself, which wasn’t much. On top of that shortness was a violently purple mop of hair that caused some of the restaurant’s patrons to crane their necks in order to see where the strange kid was going. He looked about as old as Jason himself was, too.
Purple came to a halt beside the waitress, holding out his hand, face blank. Jason took it and immediately felt the other man’s beast running up his arm to meet with his own. Purple was a werewolf.
“Oz,” the man introduced himself, before sitting. He didn’t seem to care about the glances he still got from various directions.
Jason chuckled and asked, “As in ‘The Wizard Of? I’m Jason.”
Oz shook his head and there was something in his movement, that caused Jason to add years to his estimation. Despite his hair and attitude, Oz wasn’t a kid, not even close. Late 20’s, maybe older. “Oz as in Osbourne.”
The blonde werewolf nodded, remaining silent as the waitress brought Oz his drink. No alcohol. A lot of wolves couldn’t handle liquor only three days before the full moon.
“So,” Jason finally broke the silence,” Why are you here, Oz?”
Best to start easy. After all, he couldn’t very well ask, “Hey, how do you feel about fucking this woman, who’ll use you as food?” That had gone spectacularly wrong the one and only time he’d tried it. That had been at interview number three. Or was that four?
“My Mistress sent me here.”
Jason blinked owlishly. “Mistress? The Master of the City of Los Angeles is male.”
Oz didn’t bat an eyelash. “Yes.”
“Then why do you call him Mistress?”
Cocking his head to the side slightly, Oz ran a hand through his bright hair. “I’m not. His mate is female.”
Jason took a sip of his wine, to give himself a moment to make sense of that. Mate? What mate? Nathaniel had stuffed him with information about the Master of L.A. right before he’d left the Circus. He was a young master, known for being violent and wild. William the Bloody they called him. But no-one had ever mentioned a mate.
Unless, “You’re talking about his human servant.”
The other wolf made a small noise deep in his throat that Jason identified as a laugh. “You try calling her that to her face.”
The blonde smiled. He remembered the first time someone had called Anita Jean-Claude’s human servant. He also remembered what Anita had done to the poor worm. It seemed the two werewolves’ Masters of the City liked their women... independent.
“So you were sent here.”
The look Oz gave Jason seemed... well, annoyed wasn’t the right word. His face was still pleasantly empty, but there was a vague shadow there that said that he might get slightly annoyed if Jason kept picking at his answers. Actually getting annoyed would probably be too much work
, Jason thought.
“By my Master and Mistress,” the wolf allowed in a fashion that set Jason’s sixth, or maybe eighth sense off again.
He frowned as it dawned of him. “The Master of L.A. calls leopards, so he can’t be your master. You might live in his town, but rules state that unless you are his animal to call you owe him no allegiance.”
Jason tapped his fingers against his empty glass. “Do I have to drag everything out of you, kicking and fighting?”
Finally, finally he got a reaction. Oz blinked. “I guess so. I don’t talk much.”
Jason rolled his eyes. “Really.”
“I’m more a man of action.”
Looking at the purple hair opposite him, Jason could see that. “I can see that. Nice hair, by the way.”
Again, Oz ran a hand through it. “Thanks. What color is it?”
“Color. I lose track.”
Refilling his glass and taking a hefty swallow Jason offered, “Purple. It’s purple.”
The waitress showed up again, ready to take their orders. Since they had yet to open their menus, Jason asked her to come back in a few minutes. She nodded and left. Her smile had gone back to professional. Great, she thinks I’m gay.
If Anita didn’t find her new food source soon he was going to run out of waitresses to flirt with in all the acceptable restaurants. Well, shoot.
They both ordered without real interest, Jason because he was, for once, not hungry and Oz....Well Jason didn’t think Oz was interested in anything very much.
“So. Do you smoke?”
“How old are you?”
Jason grinned. Only a few years off, not too bad.
“How long have you been a wolf?”
“Since I was seventeen.”
He swallowed. Seventeen was... young. Not that he had been that much older, but still. Seventeen was almost a kid.
“You got attacked?”
Oz nodded his head. “I didn’t know my baby cousin was ticklish.”
“You got attacked by your own cousin?!”
A few heads turned at that exclamation, causing the younger of the two to blush prettily. Yeah, he was a stripper, but some things even Jason didn’t want attention for. Oz seemed unfazed.
“I tickled him. He bit me.”
“O-kaay.” Again, Jason blinked. This Oz guy seemed to match Anita’s criteria perfectly so far. He had no problem with his past or beast, it seemed, he wasn’t jail bait, and he certainly didn’t have much of a temper. Still, something was very off about him. Off enough that the younger of the two men decided it was time to get personal.
“Tell me about your pack?”
A shrug. “They don’t like me much.”Wonder why,
Jason thought, but he didn’t say it out loud. He was probably biased. Jean-Claude always said he talked too much.
“They call me the Master’s lap dog.”
“He’s not your master.” Somehow, they were moving in circles it seemed. Very small circles.
“They know that.”
Everyone seemed to know it, but somehow no-one seemed to understand the implications. Jason felt a major headache coming his way. “Great. Then why do they call you that?”
“Because it’s true.”
“You are aware that this would be over much faster if you just told me what I want to know, without me having to drag every damn word out of you?”
For a fraction of a second Jason considered opening his mouth and screaming as loud as he could. He decided against it. He didn’t want to scare off the cute waitress after all.
“Why is it true?”
“We got history.”
Jason raised an eyebrow.
“His mate’s best friend is my ex girlfriend. They invited me to L.A. after they took over. It’s nice.”
Jason nodded. It seemed logical for them to invite friends into their territory. The old master, the current master’s grand sire had pretty much ignored his duties, causing the city to fall into supernatural chaos. Now, five years after the change of masters, William the Bloody was still struggling to maintain order. Jean-Claude was sure that without his human servant, who was none other than the legendary Last Slayer, L.A. would have fallen into chaos long ago. As it was, Los Angeles was not a place any preternatural went to for vacation.
“So, why are you here?”
“I was sent here.”
“Why would your master order you to come here to become pomme de sang
when you’re this close and he needs you?”
Jason sat very still. He didn’t even blink. Actually, he did nothing but breathe real deep and count to ten. Slowly. Very slowly. How could someone this quiet and temper-less be so infuriating? He wanted to like the guy, he really did, but this was hard
Still, somehow he had to make sense of this mess, if only to get out and home where he could smash things against the wall. It seemed the calmer Oz got, the more worked up he got. It was…. Argh!
“So…. You hare not here to become Anita Blake’s pomme de sang
The blonde werewolf was absolutely sure that he saw a small smile of amusement flicker across the other man’s face as he confirmed, “No.”
Bastard was enjoying this.
“Then why the hell are you here?”
“Because my Mistress needed me to come here. Take me to your master?” Funny, he didn’t sound like he was enjoying this now. He sounded dead serious.
“Why didn’t you negotiate for you to come here?”
“Take me to your master, please.”
35 minutes later saw two werewolves silently descend into the underbelly of the Circus. One was watching his surroundings with interest, like a tourist and the other was watching him doing it.
Reaching the bottom of the giant stairs Jason kicked open the door leading into what Jean-Claude called the living room. Personally, Jason thought it looked like a circus tent right out of some glittery porn. Or something like that. Was there circus porn?
“Honey, I’m home! And I brought dinner!”
His loud exclamation was answered by an undignified squeak coming from a big white sofa with its back to the door. There was a loud thud followed by some muffled curses in two voices and languages.
Jason would never admit it, but he found it incredibly cute that even after centuries in America, Jean-Claude still cursed in French. And sexy, too.
A second later Anita’s head showed up above the back of the sofa. Her lipstick was smeared all over her face, her hair was a mess and her eyes were shooting daggers at the blonde werewolf.
“Jason, what the fuck do you….” She trailed off as her eyes fell on Oz.
“Who is this?” She still sounded pissed.
“Are you naked?”
She glowered at Jason evilly for a moment, before turning to look Oz up and down slowly. It was the kind of look that made Jason shiver with anticipation. Oz seemed unfazed.
“Who are you?”
“You are naked, aren’t you?”
“Jason, I damn well asked you a….”
She was interrupted, yet again, by Jason who turned toward the other werewolf, repeating his question, “Is she naked?”
Oz cocked his head to one side, eyeing her critically for a moment, before nodding once, “I think so.”
Anita huffed loudly before she suddenly squirmed and slapped at something out of the wolves’ sight.
“Jean-Claude, stop that,” she hissed. She turned to glare at, presumably, the Master of the City, revealing some more skin.
Jason nodded his satisfaction, “She’s naked. They were having sex.”
Oz didn’t blink. “The whole room smells of it. It’s like back home, actually.”
The younger wolf was about to ask about that as a soft purr came from the sofa, “But, ma petite
, there is nothing Jason ha not seen yet.”
“Yeah, but Jason brought a friend.”
“Another candidate for you, I am sure.” Anita frowned. Jason grinned because he knew something they did not. Even if he didn’t know all that much. Jean-Claude had gone back to trying to fondle Anita.
“I’m not.” Well, that stopped everyone quite fast.
Both, the Master of the City and his human servant had frozen where they were and Jason didn’t fare much better.
Suddenly the quiet wolf he had met less than two hours ago was gone. In his place was an alpha that could have given Richard a run for his money. The power that rang in those two words was so thick the other werewolf found himself thinking someone else had said them, for just a second.
But the power was all Oz.
On the sofa Jean-Claude sat up, letting go of Anita completely and looking at the newcomer. Jason tried to imagine what he saw.
A small man with purple hair and a relatively ordinary face. He looked like a scrawny kid, his stance relaxed as before. Not even his eyes had bled to wolf. He looked completely ordinary. Until he’d touched him, Jason hadn’t known what he was. He’d seemed so weak.
And here he was, leaking power all over the place and the wolf didn’t even peak out his eyes.
The vampire frowned prettily. “Then why are you here, my little wolf?”
“There are very few people that get to call me anything like that. You are not one of them.”
Jason couldn’t help the “wow” that escaped his lips. As every eye turned on him he elaborated, “That was the most I’ve heard him say the whole evening.”
“I don’t talk much,” Oz confirmed. Circles
, Jason thought, pretty little circles
. But this time he managed to keep his opinion to himself.
“The question remains, why are you here? Why did my wolf bring you here?”
“Because I asked him to.”
Now that he wasn’t involved, Jason could almost see the irony in the way Oz forced his manner of speaking onto everyone without even trying. Almost.
“Because I’m looking for something.”
Anita had finally regained her voice and butted in, “You’re not getting it.” One had to admire her for her speedy decision making.
“It’s not something that belongs to you.”
“Then who does it belong to?”
Oz power was folding back into his small body, like it had never been there in the first place. He’d used it to get attention and to be taken seriously. Nothing more. The only vampire in the room knew that as well as his wolf standing a little away from him. He sighed, causing small shivers to run down everyone’s spines.
“What do you look for?”
“It’s a she. Her name is Dawn Summers. She ran away.”
Anita was the first to speak, always intent on protecting people, even if they did not need protection. “What if she doesn’t want to come?”
“It was a misunderstanding. I just want to talk to her.”
“Why is your master interested in a girl?”
Jason had to admit, Oz was holding up fairly well, under Anita’s interrogation techniques.
“She’s my Mistress’ sister.”
Seeing the confused looks, the blonde jumped in, “The master’s human servant.”
“Of course. How can we help you, mon ami
“She works in one of your clubs, called Guilty Pleasures
Anita smacked her forehead with the heel of her hand, “The new holy item girl! But she said her name was Dawn LeHane.”
“She’s not stupid. Can I visit her?”
Jean-Claude took a long moment to look at the short werewolf. Then he shook his head. “I will have some of my men fetch her.”
Faust, Graham and a hyena named Nazareth were sent to fetch the wayward sister while the party of four waited.
Two went to get dressed, leaving the werewolves on their own. Jason didn’t even try to make conversation. He knew it wouldn’t work anyway.
But after almost an hour of watching Oz sit very still, he lost what little patience he had. “Why do you talk so little?”
Oz looked up, a frown on his usually expressionless face. He opened his mouth to say something, causing Jason to shift forward in his seat, eager to hear the reason.
Sadly, Oz got saved by the arrival of one Dawn Summers.
The brunette girl, barely 20 by the looks of it, froze in the doorway as she heard the familiar voice.
“Oz,” she returned weakly.
“I want to take you home.”
“Why not?” He looked very patient with the young woman, even as Dawn was hugging herself angrily. Jason suspected the anger wasn’t directed at Oz, though.
Neither of the two strangers reacted as Anita and Jean-Claude reentered the room, looking very satisfied. At least they were dressed this time. Not that Jason minded when they were naked.
“I heard Spike and that other master, Ramon. I heard what they were talking about! Ramon wants me in exchange for his support of Spike and Buffy and Spike has to say yes, because we can’t afford not to take help when it’s offered! But I will not be some dead asshole’s whore! Spike can be master all he wants, but I won’t let him use me as leverage! I won’t!”
She screamed the last into Oz’ face, looking ready to cry and still hugging herself so hard she was leaving marks on her arms. Risking a glance, Jason saw that Anita seemed to be torn between being angry on the girl’s behalf, feeling sorry for her or being annoyed at the teary display. Jean-Claude’s only reaction was a raised eyebrow at the name ‘Spike’. Other than that, his poker face stayed in place for all those that didn’t know him very well. But Jason knew his Master and he could see that he felt sorry for the poor girl. He’d been leverage before and he knew how it felt.
All in all, Oz seemed the only one completely unfazed by the outburst. He just stood there and allowed Dawn to yell herself hoarse at him.
Once she was finished he took half a step forward, asking, “What made you think that Spike would ever agree to the deal? Or Buffy, for that matter?”
“But they have to! They need his support!”
Finally the werewolf’s face changed. His power was seeping through again and it tasted of anger. “Your sister died for you, Dawn. I think you don’t give them enough credit. We’re family. And they will always put you first. Always. That’s what parents do.“
Oz’ anger faded as quickly as it had come, only to be replaced by a soft smile. “You were made out of Buffy. But where do you think you got those cheekbones and baby blues from? Angel? Come home with me, Dawnie. There’s no deal important enough to give up family.”
The smile that earned him was bright enough to light up the night and as they both hugged, Dawn laughed out loud, almost a sob.
“Goddess, I’m so stupid!”
“I see you’re back to your wordy self, now that I’m not being angst-y girl anymore.”
He just smiled at that, wrapping an arm around her waist. “Thank you,” He told Jean-Claude, offering Anita and Jason both a simple nod.
Dawn smiled at everyone, before tugging on his arm, “Can we go home now? I’ve got
to tell Buffy about that one guy that…” She trailed off as she saw Oz’ amused look.
“Uhm, yeah…’ll just…” She let go of him, walking toward the door leading upstairs.
“Are things really that bad in Los Angeles?” Jean-Claude looked at Oz seriously, ignoring Dawn as she stopped and turned back, anticipating the werewolf’s answer as well.
“You want the politically correct version or the truth?”
“Truth,” Anita decided before anyone else could.
“Yeah it is. But we manage.”
The card in the Master of the City’s hand appeared out of nowhere. He handed it to the other man with a sweeping gesture, “Give this to your master and ask him to call me.”
Jason knew that the love and devotion the other master had shown touched Jean-Claude. He was a sucker for fairness and love, somewhere underneath that tough sexy exterior. Always would be. It was why he’d fallen for Anita so hard. Family was important.
“I will. Thank you.”
With that he too turned toward the door, just to stop beside Dawn. He looked a Jason, face blank.
“When I was eight me and my father went for a walk because I couldn’t sleep. We got attacked by a kiss of vampires and he hid me as well as he could before going out to draw them away. The last thing he ever said to me was ‘Don’t say a word’. I guess it stuck.” He shrugged, taking Dawn’s hand as she offered it.
Jason nodded seriously, ignoring the questioning looks he got from his master. “I’m sorry.”
“Don’t be. I’ve got all the family I need,” Oz returned, holding up his hand inside of Dawn’s. She leaned her head against his shoulder.
“Yeah. We’re a mess, but we’re family. Next time I doubt it, hit me over the head with a shovel, will ya?”
“We all will,” Anita offered with a smile that stayed on her face until Jason stepped up to her, slapping a list of names and dates into her hand. They were the potential candidates and the dates on which Jason was to meet them. She frowned, looking back up only to see the blonde werewolf hightail around a corner and into the depths of the Circus.
“Jason! You can’t leave me hanging like that! Jason….”
“I believe, ma petite
, that is Jason’s way of telling you that he is quitting.”
Anita glared at Jean-Claude as his laughter sent shivers up and down her spine.
For those of you that read my other Anita BLake crossovers: Would you prefer more Lunar
or more Paradise Lost
this Sunday? Cuz I don't have enough words to post both.