TITLE: Adventures in Babysitting
SUMMARY: Dawn gets kidnapped once again, taking one of Buffy’s boyfriends along for the ride.
For Buffy: Set after AU after “Chosen”, Pre “The Girl in Question” in Angel
For Highlander: AU (post – “Methos”)
DISCLAIMER: I do not own any of the characters in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and/or Angel the Series, they belong to Fox, the WB/UPN, Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, etc. The characters of Highlander: the Series belong to Davis/Panzer Productions, Inc/Rysher Entertainment. The ideas and concepts in this story are mine entirely. Please do not copy or take this story without my permission.
A/N: Fifth Entry in the August Fic-A-Day Challenge at Twisted ShortsAND
This was written for Twisting the Hellmouth's
Fic-a-Thon, written for Jinni. Here is a list of her wants and her want-nots:CHARACTERS: Dawn, Drusilla, Darla, Xander
FANDOMS: HL, SG1, SGA, XM, Firefly
3. If Dawn - some sort of trouble.
1. Character death (unless its Dawn)
For Jinni, who says she's easy to write for... *gulp*
“Oh, you are so dead,” Dawn Summers grumbled as she desperately pulled on her restraints. She was currently chained to a dingy wall in what appeared to be a dungeon.
“Dead? How am I dead?” her male companion questioned as he calmly stood beside her, shackled to the slimy wall.
“Buffy asked you to watch me for two hours. Two! And you couldn’t even do that without getting me kidnapped!”
“You kidnapped? How do you know they didn’t kidnap me and take you because you were there?”
“Please, you blend in, you make an effort to blend in! I stand out!”
“Because you’re a bratty child and for no other reason,” he replied, letting his annoyance be known. Dawn stopped struggling long enough to stick her tongue out at him. “See, you just proved my point.”
“And you just moved to the top of Buffy’s shit list. She doesn’t take kindly to those that kidnap her sister or those that let her get kidnapped.”
“I certainly didn’t let you get kidnapped. Was I supposed to stay inside and listen to you whine all evening about how you were too old for a babysitter and you wanted ice cream?”
“Yes. Because when I leave the apartment without Buffy I tend to get kidnapped!”
“Well it’s a bloody shame that none of your previous kidnappers followed through with their death threats!”
“Aah!” Dawn got out, clearly shocked at the comment. She opened her mouth to start yelling but Adam cut her off.
“Don’t even. I can’t bear to hear it. How about we just sit here and wait for your sister to rescue us? I suppose being the Slayer’s sister will give you some trading value with our kidnappers.”
Dawn stopped struggling in her chains and looked over at Adam. “Excuse me? You think I’m what?” she whispered.
“Buffy is the Slayer. What, you didn’t think I knew that little secret, Princess?”
“How’d…” Dawn trailed off not quite sure how to respond.
“She told me. It came up and now I know.”
“And you, Adam Pierson, eternal grad student, are okay with that and all that it entails?”
“Yep. It takes a lot more than vampires and demons to scare me off.”
“How come?” Dawn’s innocent question caused a dark shadow to pass over Adam’s face.
“We all have our secrets. I’m sure you’ve got a few yourself.”
They lapsed into silence, neither continuing the last topic nor picking up a new one.
It was hours before any one came down to see them. The minutes crawled by for Dawn. She continued to pull on her chains, ripping her wrists to shreds in an attempt at escape. Adam remained as calm as he had been when he woke. Struggling would do him no good, and giving away his position was to lose the element of surprise.
“Someone’s coming. Just be cool Dawn. And don’t let them get to you,” Adam whispered to Dawn a moment before the sound of footsteps echoed through the chamber. A moment later they were greeted by the sight of a horridly disfigured old man. He limped into their view and offered them a disturbing smile. Most of his face had been burnt and it remained mostly unhealed.
“Welcome, Ms. Summers. And it’s a pleasure to see you again, Mr. Pierson,” the man spoke.
“And you are?” Dawn asked, getting a dirty look from Adam, but ignoring it.
“Quentin Travers, head of the Slayer’s branch of the Watcher’s Council,” he introduced himself.
“You died in the blast…no one saw you survive,” she argued.
“And I won’t disagree with you, Ms. Summers. I did die in that blast, but it seems I was destined for great things.” He had moved to stand before them, keeping out of range of their legs.
“Perhaps your companion would care to explain.”
“Adam?” Dawn quietly asked and looked over at him in confusion. The dark look had returned to his face as she waited for an answer.
“I’m not quite sure what you want me to explain. I’m new at this, myself,” he coolly responded, putting the ball back in his court.
“You know it better than you pretend, but I’ll humor you. It turns out, Ms. Summers, that there are Immortals in this world. People that can die but can’t be killed. They come back and do not age. There is, of course, more to the story, but that is the general idea. I became an Immortal, like your friend Adam here.”
Dawn looked back and forth between the two men. The betrayal and confusion showed on her face. Adam was about to speak but Dawn cut him off with a shake of her head and spoke, “So what do you want with Adam and me?”
“The Council is mine. And the Slayers belong to the Council. With an army of Slayers I could track down every Immortal in the world and end the Game. Buffy’s already been notified of the terms of the trade. When she hands over the Council and the Slayers, you two will go free. It’s only fair, from former colleague to colleague, that you get a sporting chance before you’re hunted down, Adam.”
“Do you really think she’s just going to hand it over? The Slayers aren’t weapons or tools – they are girls – girls with a gift that came with a large price! And she certainly isn’t going to give them to you!” Dawn yelled at him.
Quentin shook his head and chuckled. “She’s predictable because she has emotions. She loves her little sister, she has killed countless demons in the past to get to you. This decision doesn’t even involve killing anything.” He turned his attention to Adam, who had been standing silently during the conversation. “You are unusually quiet. Any thoughts?”
“How do you plan to control the Slayers? They won’t willingly hunt down innocents.”
“There are resources within the Council. I will control them – that much is not an issue.”
“Buffy should’ve never let you back. You’re just worthless scum,” Dawn calmly stated and Quentin stepped into her space and backhanded her. Her head snapped to the side. She lost her balance and fell, only to be stopped short due to the chains.
He crouched down, getting eye level with Dawn, “I should have killed your sister in the beginning. It would have made my life a lot easier,” he spat out and rose to his feet. “Let’s hope your sister decides soon, otherwise you’ll be the first to go Ms. Summers,” he called as he limped back up the stairs.
“Dawn,” Adam called as soon as the door to the cellar shut. “Dawn, are you all right?” he called again.
“You lied to me. You lied to us all. What are you doing with Buffy…what do you want from her?” Dawn questioned as she managed to pull herself back to her feet. Her wrists were openly bleeding, small rivers of blood ran down them, dripping onto the cellar floor.
“I like your sister. I met her and I haven’t met anyone like her in a long time,” he started to explain and was cut off by Dawn’s hysterical laughter.
“A long time? How long is long, Adam? Is that even really your name?”
“When we get out of here, Dawn, I’ll sit down with you and with Buffy and I’ll tell you both whatever want you to know. But I can’t answer here, it isn’t safe,” he explained and held her gaze.
“You better cause Buffy’s strong and doesn’t mind killing her boyfriends if they’re evil,” Dawn quickly replied.
“We need to get out of here. I was wrong before – waiting for Buffy isn’t an option.”
“Any suggestions? I’m not getting out of these chains unless I break my wrists,” she finally acknowledged. “And that wouldn’t do us any good – I’d be pretty useless after that.”
“I wouldn’t,” he whispered and looked up at the manacles holding his wrists. It has been a long time since he had intentionally injured himself to escape a situation. What he could remember of the last time hadn’t been pleasant. “Don’t watch if you are squeamish,” he warned her and slammed his right hand into the wall. It connected with a sickening crunch and he bit back the pain. He gave it an experimental tug, ignoring the sharp pain, but it wasn’t broken enough. Again he drove his hand into the wall and this time it broke enough that he could slip his hand through.
“How long does it take for it to heal?” Dawn asked as she watched him cradle his broken hand to his chest. His pain was showing on his face.
“Shouldn’t be too long – a few minutes at the longest – the injury isn’t too severe,” he answered and looked up at his remaining wrist.
“Perhaps you should wait until the one has healed – you wouldn’t want to be totally vulnerable,” Dawn suggested and frowned slightly.
“I can’t chance waiting and have him come down here either,” Adam answered and Dawn shuddered slightly but nodded.
“Go ahead – I’ll listen for anyone coming downstairs.” She offered him a forced smile that he didn’t exactly return.
Again, he broke his wrist, and pulled it through the manacles. He was free. His right wrist was almost healed by this time and he used it to push himself off the wall, cradling his broken left wrist to his body, and moved toward Dawn. He reached out and gently touched her wrists. She couldn’t control the whimper of pain as he grazed her broken flesh.
“I’m going to get you out of here. I would appreciate it if you would put in a good word with your sister, so she’ll just cut off my head and be done with it,” he joked with her. She laughed and a few tears rolled down her cheeks.
“Nothing can change Buffy’s mind once its been made. Let’s just hope she’s in a good mood when she rescues us,” Dawn suggested, offering him a watery smile.
“Let me see what I can find to get you out of these chains, ok?” Adam suggested and started looking around the room for anything to break the chains. Unsurprisingly he didn’t find anything strong enough to break the manacles or anything to use as a weapon. He walked back over to her and began thoroughly examining her chains with both hands. There were no weak spots, no releases, and no chance of freeing her as it stood.
“Go,” she whispered and he shook his head. “Go. If you can find a key or a weapon or something to get me free you are going to find it upstairs, not down here. You said it yourself that we needed to get out of here, so let’s. Just go get me a key and we’ll leave,” Dawn urged him. He didn’t immediately disagree.
“I’m coming back for you. It wouldn’t do me any good to get the Slayer’s sister killed while we were mounting our escape.”
“She’s not likely to forgive that,” Dawn laughed. She watched as Adam made his way to the door. And she was pretty sure she heard him swearing in Sumerian about ‘morals and the Highlander’. She would have to ask him about that once she got out of this mess.
The seconds crept by and turned into minutes. Dawn thought it had been hours but in reality it had been but a few minutes when she heard an explosion upstairs. It rocked the entire structure sending dirt from the ceiling down around her. The sound of gunfire and fighting drew closer. The cellar door was thrown open a body tumbled down the stairs.
Quentin Travers rose shakily to his feet as Adam, sword in hand, jogged down the stairs after him. Quentin held his own sword in one hand but didn’t look nearly as comfortable with it as Adam did. Dawn watched, unable to move or help due to her restraints, as they traded blows. It was clear Adam was the better swordsman and was simply playing with Quentin. The issue must have been clear to Quentin as well because he pulled out a handgun and pointed it at Adam.
“Enough, enough!” Quentin yelled, causing Adam to pull back on his attack. “You are clearly the better fighter. I’ll give that you, Adam. How you have managed to gain this much skill in the short time since you died I don’t understand, but that is a mystery for another day. But I’m not going to die just because of rules,” he explained, waving the gun about.
Dawn screamed, a loud, piercing, girly scream that caught the attention of both men. Unfortunately for Dawn she hadn’t counted on Quentin’s panicked, jumpy state. He turned toward the scream and fired. The bullet caught Dawn in the chest and rocked her back against the wall. A stunned expression appeared on her face only to be matched a moment later by Quentin. Accidentally he had killed his bargaining chip and sealed his future.
The sword arced through the air, neatly severing Quentin’s head from his body. There was a moment where the two pieces were still connected before the body dropped and the head bounced away on the floor. Adam stepped over the body, making his way over to Dawn as she slowly slid down the wall, stopping when she ran out of chain.
“Dawn!” he called out and her eyes slowly came to focus on him. A trickle of blood had escaped her mouth. “Oh, Dawn, hang in there,” he added but was abruptly dropped to his knees as the first wave of lightning from the Quickening hit him.
Dawn smiled at him, a genuine smile. “Looks like I’m not going to be tattling to Buffy about you after all,” she whispered and laughed before it turned into a cough of pain.
Adam could only watch in horror as Dawn’s life slipped away before his eyes. The Quickening of Quentin Travers ripped through him, destroying the room, and immobilizing him.
Dawn Summers took her first Immortal breath with a harsh gasp and jerked. The manacles around her wrists clattered loudly in the eerie silence surrounding her. She was sitting, resting against the floor of a cellar. A tingling sensation washed over her.
“Dawn?” a worried male voice asked. She turned her head to locate the source of the voice and saw Adam, her sister’s boyfriend. “Hey Dawn,” he greeted her with a sad smile.
“Hey Adam,” she whispered back and swallowed a couple of times. “I died. I remember getting shot and dying. What am I doing here?” Tears gathered in her eyes, the eyes of a scared child.
“You aren’t done living yet,” he softly stated.
“We’re so dead,” she replied with a small smile and a slightly hysterical laugh.
“How do you figure?”
“Two hours – that is all she asked you to watch me for. Two hours and somehow we managed to get ourselves kidnapped, held for ransom, and me killed. How am I going to explain this one to Buffy?”
“I’ll start and you can join in when you feel comfortable,” he offered with a small shrug.
“Sounds like a safe plan to me,” she replied. He offered her his hand and pulled her to feet. “Let’s go greet the firing squad.”
“At least they can’t kill you,” he teased as they left the cellar.