Title: Reflections of You
Author: Drake Roberts (aka: Shelley of Kelley and Shelley)
Rating: PG-13 There will be violence, but I don't see any elaborate sex scenes or sailor-like swearing in this story's future. If you watch the TV show and read the books, I really don't think you'll have a problem stomaching my story.
Disclaimer: Since I have, as of yet, not published any original works, there is no possible way I could own any of the characters, settings, etc. of either Buffy the Vampire Slayer or the Harry Potter book series. But that could all change if J.K. Rowling or Joss Whedon wanted to sell them to me. I have a shiny nickel!
Author's Note: Yes, I am aware that this crossover has been done to death. The truth of the matter is, I fought writing this for a long time, but the idea wouldn't leave me alone. So, for the sake of my sanity and the hope that getting it out of my head and onto paper would clear some more of my brain to work on my other WIP fics, I jotted the plot bunny down. Of course, once I started it, I really enjoyed it, so I'm going to post in the vain hope that someone isn't totally burned out on BTVS/HP crossovers and will read it and give me some feedback. Be warned: This story starts out at the end of Season 6, and the 4th Harry Potter book (surprise, surprise). But, I pledge a solemn oath on my oversized Xander T-shirt that it will not be a carbon copy of the Willow gets all better at Hogwarts storyline. I'm much too twisted to be that predictable. Anyway, I'm posting the first part as a trial. If you like it, tell me. If you want more, TELL ME. If you've deathly afraid of lawn gnomes . . . Well, actually, I'd be intrigued, but it's not really necessary information.
Ahem! ON WITH THE STORY!
Two figures stood less than twenty feet from each other, yet even the casual observer could see more separated them than a small length of sunny field. Polar opposites they were, one petite, but still frighteningly intimidating, the other taller, broader, and more muscled, but somehow appearing much more vulnerable. One seethed with rage and grief so strong it seemed to suck the light in from around her, darkening what would normally be a bright spring day. The other represented a quandary, outwardly calm, but inwardly a maelstrom of anxiety and fear, not for himself, but for the figure standing less than fifteen steps away. By all appearances, the first, hellbent on destruction, should easily crush the second who had nothing at his disposal to fight this dangerous creature.
Appearances can be deceiving.
"Get out of my way, Xander. I mean it."
Two friends squared off against one another. One wanted to end the world's, and her own suffering, in a flaming pyre. The other one's thoughts revolved solely on saving the friend he loved more than his own life.
That, or making sure he died with her.
"World's gonna end, where else am I gonna be?" he asks, almost as much to himself as to her.
Eyes darkened to match the witch's hair at that remark. "You can't stop me."
A face so rarely devoid of humor met her stare solemnly and with an intensity she didn't think her friend capable of before. "It doesn't matter. I'll still love you."
Rage boiled to the surface, as if the simple sincerity of his words had struck something deep inside, something ugly. She batted her friend aside like so much rubbish and gathered her energies to siphon into the idol in front of her. Laying at the foot of the statue, pain radiating from his ribs and down his back, he could think of only one thing to do. If he'd thought about it rationally, he would have realized his idea was insane. But he wasn't listening to his rational mind at the moment. The young witch saw her friend meet her eyes for a brief instant. Then he stepped into her magic's path.
Half a world away, Harry Potter sat up with a gasp, his hand going to his forehead where his infamous scar was throbbing in time with the rapid pumping of his heart. Something big was happening, he could feel it.
"Harry?" Hermione whispered from where she sat next to his bed in the Hospital Wing. He was due to be released tomorrow, but his friend had insisted she stay and help him catch up on missed schoolwork. To be truthful, he enjoyed the company, if not the tutoring. "Are you quite all right? Harry?"
He couldn't answer her. He was too busy writhing in agony. The pain seemed to come from everywhere and nowhere at the same time. He'd never felt anything like it, not from any injury, or his scar, or any curse he'd ever been put under. Every muscle in his body spasmed simultaneously. A strangled gasp escaped his locked jaw, and he vaguely saw Hermione's eyes widen in fright.
As quickly as the pain started, it ended, leaving no more than a memory, and a very frightened Hermione Granger standing over his hospital bed. Harry blinked a few times to clear his vision.
"I'm fine, Hermione," he reassured his friend before she could even ask. His voice sounded a little weak, but she seemed to accept his statement. "But we need to find Professor Dumbledore right away."
"But, Harry, the curfew, remember?" Hermione stated. Harry gave her a pointed look. She rolled her eyes. "Oh, right. I forgot. We're rebels. We don't follow such petty rules as strictly enforced, you'll-be-expelled-if-you-get-caught curfews," She shrugged. "I didn't want to graduate anyway. Come on, then. Let's find Dumbledore."
The two didn't have to look for long. They nearly ran into him as they turned the corner after exiting the hospital wing. Professor McGonagall and Professor Snape were right behind him. By some miracle, Harry and Hermione somehow managed to dodge the three wizards and avoid discovery. They quickly fell into step behind the three.
"It's all gone terribly wrong, Albus," Professor McGonagall exclaimed fretfully.
"Well what did you expect after we imbued our powers to an outsider," Snape retorted scornfully.
"Now, Severus. I trust Rupert Giles implicitly. " Dumbledore stated. "True, he ws not trained in our ways, but he is a skilled wizard in his own right, nonetheless, muggle or no. And, need I remind you, it was one of his protégé's who caused all of this?"
"Something needs to be done," Severus argued. "Even now, the child is up to Merlin knows what. Her power must be contained before she decides to kill us all!"
"For once, I agree with Severus," McGonagall added reluctantly. "With You-Know-Who on the loose once again, we have no idea what plans he could bring to fruitation with someone as powerful and out of control as the girl. We must take action immediately."
"If I am not mistaken," Dumbledore spoke, a faraway gleam in his eye. "Action is already being taken."
McGonagall and Snape both gaped at Professor Dumbledore in complete bewilderment. Hermione blinked. What was the Headmaster talking about? Imbuing power to Muggles? Actions being taken? What the bloody hell? How much trouble could one person get into with magic in the Muggle world?
Harry tensing up beside her was the only warning Hermione got before her cohort and his Invisibility Cloak both fell to the floor at her feet.
Professor McGonagall gasped. "Hermione Granger? Why on earth are you spying about in the hall?"
Professor Snape turned to her with a sneer. "Where is he, Miss Granger? That meddling Potter must be around her somewhere."
A whimper came from the invisible form at her feet. Hermione completely ignored her demanding professors and kneeled at her friend's side.
"Harry? Harry, what is it?" She pulled the cloak away and stared down at his huddled form. Harry had his arms wrapped around himself and his whole body had begun to shiver.
The entire group, minus Harry, turned at the frantic shout. Ginny Weasley ran toward them, her older brother Ron in tow. The two came to a halt in front of the gathered group.
"Something's happening!" Ginny exploded. "Something big! All the pictures in our Common Room are screaming and knocking themselves off the walls!" Suddenly realized who she was actually shouting at, she swallowed nervously and looked at the floor in embarrassment.
"'Mione? What are you doing here?" Ron asked suddenly. "You wouldn't be caught dead out after -" Ron's eyes fell to her feet. "Harry!"
"It - it hurts!" Harry gasped, still hugging himself as if warding off a chill or trying to hold himself together. "Why is he so calm?"
Hermione's brow knitted in confusion. "Why is who so calm, Harry?" she asked from where she still kneeled partially in front of him.
Harry suddenly met Hermione's concerned gaze and she gasped in shock. Where green eyes used to twinkle, pupilless ebony pools glared back at her. "Whether he's here or not, the world's still gonna burn!"
Behind Hermione, Professor Snape had gone pale. He looked over at the youngest Weasley and imagined his face looked much like hers at the moment. Ginny, sensing the Potion Master's gaze, leveled him with one of her own.
"You feel it too, don't you?" she asked.
"Feel what, Miss Weasley?" Snape replied somewhat unnerved.
"Evil," Ginny answered quietly.
Ron couldn't take it anymore. He ran to Harry's side and grasped him by the shoulders. "Bleedin' hell, Harry. Snap out of it!" he commanded, giving his friend a good shake.
Harry blinked heavily and while the black eyes remained, Hermione and Ron were relieved to see their friend behind them instead of that dark force from before.
"Ron," Harry asked shakily.
Ron offered his friend a nervous grin. "Where'd you go just then?"
Harry shivered. "She's in so much pain. She wants to end it. She wants it all to end. And her friend, he. . . .he,"
"He's doing what he has to," Dumbledore answered quietly. Everyone jumped; they'd forgotten he was even there. "Now, if you please, we must attend to this matter. Professor McGonagall, I'm entrusting the children's supervision to you until I return."
Professor McGonagall nodded in response.
"Ron," The redhead's eyes shot up when the Headmaster used his first name. "You take Harry back to Madame Pomprey and stay there, understood?"
"Yes, sir," Ron replied quickly and Dumbledore turned to Hermione and Ginny. "Miss Granger, you and Miss Weasley grab Harry's cloak and accompany Severus and I."
"What?" Snape exclaimed. "We're bringing students with us?"
* * * * *
Deep in the dungeons on the other side of the school, Draco Malfoy was wishing he would die, or at least lapse into a coma for the next week. He bolted from the room he shared with the other boys from his year, for once grateful that his bed was close to the door that led to the bathroom.
As the day's food made a repeat appearance, Draco cursed the fact that magic had little effect on most illnesses. Or allergies, for that matter. Being allergic to cat hair in a place where practically every other student had one was hell on earth at times. Of course, this whole castle seemed like hell on earth nowadays.
Voldemort had returned. He'd bled Harry Freakin' Potter and made himself whole once more. In the Slytherin house, you'd think the Ministry had declared every day was Christmas. Everyone celebrated when they returned to the Common Room at night. Draco's father no doubt had already begun kissing Lord Voldemort's ass in an attempt to appease him for his cowardice in the face of Dumbledore and the other good wizards. Draco's induction into the Death Eaters was an inevitability, one that he'd started to look at with a horrible sense of foreboding.
He'd followed his father in love and fear on the dark path. He'd thirsted for the limitless power that Voldemort represented, and he'd eagerly awaited the day that he could watch Harry Potter get what was coming to him.
All his thoughts of power and glory stopped the moment Harry and Cedric had returned with the Portkey trophy. Draco had never seen a dead body before. He'd never witnessed a family grieve for a life unfairly taken. Most wizards died of old age, at least since he could remember. He knew that families had been ripped apart by Voldemort and the Death Eaters, but they had just been stories. This was reality. He'd known Cedric. They'd gone head-to-head in Quidditch. He knew Cedric didn't like him; no one liked him, even in his own house, but he'd still known him. He'd even liked him in a way. Cedric was a good Quidditch player and one of the few people who didn't go out of their way to hate him. He was just there. . . . . Until he wasn't.
He'd stood in the background and watched Cedric's family mourn and wondered if anyone would care half as much if Voldemort end ed his life. Then his eyes had fallen on the famous Harry Potter, lying bleeding beside the body, his eyes wild and haunted. Both of them stared at the boy who only died because he was at the wrong place at the wrong time, the boy who'd died while Harry Potter had lived, again.
Draco had torn his eyes away from the scene, refusing to acknowledge feeling any sympathy for the Mudblood do-gooder he was supposed to loathe with his entire being. He knew the Gryffindor would never spare any such sympathy for him. If he ignored the gnawing in his gut, it would go away, just like the tears that clouded his vision.
Unfortunately, the images stayed with him, chipping away at the cold resolve he'd surrounded himself with, trying to get at emotions he'd buried the day he realized that his father was raising him to be a pawn, not an heir. The last week, he'd kept up the threats toward Potter and his merry band and his shrewd mask of contempt for any wizards not loyal to the Dark Lord, but inside his doubt had begun to grow. His contempt had turned to envy. He now yearned for something he realized they had, but that he'd never been given: a choice.
His prayer to the porcelin gods complete, he exited the stall and leaned against the stone wall beside the sinks, letting the stones' chill soothe his feverish skin. The case of the shivers he developed was worth the relief it brought to his aching muscles and throbbing head.
Merlin, he hated being ill. You threw your guts up and ached all over, and even going to sleep rarely brought relief, as it only brought on warped, nightmarish fever dreams. Draco pushed himself off the wall and shuddered at that thought. His dreams tonight were the worst. Even after he'd woken up, he thought he could still feel the darkness trying to close in around him, rip him apart, burn him alive from the inside. Then the first wave of nausea had hit and all thoughts but the need to get to the toilet had scurried away.
"Wow, Malfoy. You really look like shit."
Draco's eyes snapped open in alarm. He hadn't even heard the seventh year enter the bathroom. The guy walked past Draco and started filling a glass at the sink.
"Yeah," Draco replied quietly, mustering up a tiny smirk from some hidden reserve. "Flu's a real bitch."
The seventh year looked at the silver-haired boy askance for a moment before turning for the door, glass in hand. When he got to the doorway, he turned back to Draco with what the younger man could have sworn was close to concern on his face.
"You really should go see Madam Pomprey," he said. "The last thing you need right now is for those cuts to get infected."
His good deed done, the elder Slytherin returned to his room, completely missing the look of utter horror that came to Draco Malfoy's pale face. As the bathroom door swung closed, he raised a shaking hand to his left cheek. His fingers came back bloody.
"Shut up!" Invisible fingers swiped across his face.
Draco gripped the sink so hard his knuckles creaked and willed his knees not to buckle. After a few deep breaths, he finally looked up. His own frightened silver eyes stared back at him. Three angry red lines slashed across his angular cheekbone, not much more than a scrape, really. Some of the healing balm his mother had given him last Christmas would take care of the minor cuts by morning.
But that wasn't what drew his attention and started his shivers with renewed fervor. His eyes locked on the bloody tatters of his pajama top.
"I love you, Willow."
"Shut up!" Fingernails turned into talons, ripping through cloth and skin to the tissue beneath knocking him to his knees. The fiery trail over his heart did nothing but drive him toward her. Long ago he'd made a promise and he was going to keep it.
Draco absently drew a trembling hand to his bleeding chest. "I promised her she would never be alone," he whispered.
Stumbling back from the sink, Draco desperately tried to stop the whirl of emotions that he knew weren't his own. A sob escaped his lips as he caught his eyes in the mirror once again, tear-filled and more terrified than he'd ever seen.
"Oh, God," he managed, the words barely audible, even to his own ears.
Draco finally lost his battle with gravity and fell until his back came into contact with the stone wall. He slid the rest of the way to the floor. Pulling his knees to his chest, despite the pain that brought from the still slightly bleeding gashes, he huddled in the corner and silently prayed for the dreams, the darkness, and the chills to go away.
* * * * *
TBC. . .
That enough of a teaser for you?