Sorry, Wrong Channel!
A Crossover fanfic by A J
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters, but the plot is all mine.
Prequel Chapter 7
Just after Season Two:
The mysterious wave of energy crashed over Heatherfield like a tsunami, washing away all that was before.
"Hay Lin, would you please come back down here?" Will yelled out the balcony doorway. As soon as they had managed to get away from Cornelia's house, the Guardians had folded straight to the Temple in Candracar, Peter and Yan tagging along. Will was only sorry she hadn't had time to get hold of Matt and Huggles as well, though she was sure that they were fine back in Heatherfield. Napoleon (now a Glameow) had told the girls quietly that he'd get out and rendezvous with his fellow Regents as soon as they were gone, and do his best at damage control.
Hay sang a carefree "OKAY!" and came swooping in the door, millimeters from Will's red ears. Sailing along on her wings, Hay refused to settle to a single surface, instead doing slow circles around the rest of the Guardians as they sat before the Oracle.
"Man, this day just gets weirder and weirder," Peter grumbled to his sister.
"You're preaching to the choir, Pete," she returned, examining her flaming tail for the millionth time.
"Just zap her, Will. It's the only way we'll get her down," Irma told the Guardian Leader while eyeballing the soaring Hay Lin. "It won't even take much. Flying types are weak to electricity." Yan Lin pecked Irma on her brown, wing-like ear. "What? Sorry! It's the truth!" Will and the other girls laughed.
"I have been observing Earth all morning," the Oracle said suddenly, standing up from his usual floating lotus position. "The change is world-wide, Guardians. Also, you are not alone in noticing the new reality. I am going to send you all to meet with the different groups of those who are aware, and bring them together in the area we believe to be the source of the change. I must warn you, though, not all of them will follow this directive willingly, at first."
"'course not," Irma muttered. "Who would believe that they're all suddenly cartoon critters from somebody's video game? Or that we think we know how to fix it?"
"Oracle, would it speed things up if we split into teams?" Taranee asked, ignoring Irma. "We could reach more of the others at the same time that way."
"Astute as ever, Fire Guardian," the Oracle said with a nod. "For that, and for reuniting after you have the others with you, you will need ways to travel farther and faster than flying alone ... Follow me." He headed off towards the Chamber of the Aurameres.
Luba, the feline woman from Basiliade, smirked when she saw the transformed Guardians. "I knew most of you were prey animals when we met. These new forms prove it."
"Orb-Keeper, not now," Yan said, her wings flapping harshly. "We have too much else to be about." The Oracle nodded.
"Indeed," he said. "Guardian Vandom, bring forth the Heart, please. Guardian Lin, if you would settle down, by your Auramere?" He looked pointedly up at the still-flying Hay Lin. She tittered, nodded, and swooped down past Luba to land next to the Air Orb.
"Heartwielder, hold the Heart of Candracar out and touch the Auramere of Air with it." Will looked at the Oracle dubiously, then reluctantly did as directed. "Hay Lin, touch the point where the two make contact." Both Guardians exchanged a glance, then looked back at him to be sure. He nodded serenely, and they did as he said. The moment Hay's wing came in contact with her Auramere and the Heart, a silvery pendant fell out of the Air Sphere and into her grasp. Both girls gasped, and backed away before anything else could happen.
Hay Lin held up her wing, the silver jewelry glinting against her black feathers. "It looks like the Heart!" she chirped. "Except … it's smaller." She ducked her small beak along her wing, and flipped the necklace over her head.
"You now wear the Heart of Air," the Oracle said. "A temporarily material piece of your Auramere. It will allow you to open folds and teletransport people as the Heart of Candracar does …"
"How temporary?" Will asked, not liking the idea of the tiny jewel stranding impulsive Hay Lin where she couldn't come back from. The red plus signs on her cheeks sparked.
"They draw on the life-force of their Guardian as much as the Auramere, so if used sparingly, the Elemental Hearts could theoretically last indefinitely. Unfortunately, as these missions are shaping to my vision, I don't see them lasting more than a couple dozen uses."
"You mean these things could kill us?" Taranee gasped.
"No," the Oracle soothed. "Quite the reverse, unfortunately. If you are to stress the number of uses to their limit, the Hearts are likely to dissolve under the strain, breaking your connection to the Auramere in the process. You would, in effect, no longer be a Guardian, until such time as your connection could be reforged."
"I don't recommend it," Luba gloated, as the Guardians all looked warily at the tiny jewel around Hay's throat. "It hurts. Just ask Cassidy."
"Ohmigod, the others! Will, we've got to go back! The rest of the magical community are gonna be going nuts!" Taranee cried. She ran forward and grabbed hold of Will's yellow shoulder, and their Leader hissed.
"Ah! T, you've gotta calm down!" Will cried, stepping back. The others became aware of the smell of scorched fur, and could see the handprint Taranee had left on Will.
"Sorry! Sorry!" Taranee wrung her hands, frightened more by her own powers than ever before.
"How about these other Hearts, Will, so we can get through this?" Irma asked. Cornelia stepped forward, since her Auramere was next to Hay's. "Hey, Corny. Figured out how to use vine-whip, yet?"
A fine green line slashed through the space between the two transformed girls, and Irma fell to her knees, hissing in pain.
"The #&][?" Irma gasped. Cornelia was retracting a single vine into her left flower.
"Don't call me Corny. Especially not before we're turned back. Water's weak to plants, Irmy." The Earth Guardian strode daintily over to Will, and waved the last showing foot of her vine around nonchalantly. "Whenever you're ready, Will." The Guardian of Quintessence just nodded and repeated her performance from the Air Auramere with the Earth Orb. Cornelia caught the extruded necklace expertly, and flicked it over her floral head with her vine. The gold-and-green charm settled against her chest, and suddenly, Cornelia shuddered.
"What is it? What's wrong?" Hay chirped, rushing forward. Nothing had happened when she'd gotten her Heart; what could be happening with Cornelia's?
"Oh, God! I'm sorry!" Cornelia sobbed, sinking to her green knees. She cradled the new Earth Heart between her flowery hands. "I'm sorry! I promise!" She staggered to her pointed feet and over to Irma, where she collapsed again, wrapping her willowy arms around the surprised Wartortle. "Irma, I'm sorry!" The two shook from the sobs Cornelia was wracked with.
"Whoa, what's with that?" Peter asked, as mystified as the other Guardians. Luba chuckled nastily.
"The Aurameres strenuously disapprove of the Guardians' infighting. When Cornelia went so far as to use her Element purposefully against another Guardian, the Heart of Earth made her feel what she'd done to Irma. It is something I would have done to the two of them ages ago." The catwoman spun away to sit on a bench against the far wall.
"Whoa," Peter the mankey repeated. "Heavy." Taranee 'Eeeep!'ed as Will stepped over to the Fire Auramere.
"T? You ready?" Before she could think about it further, Taranee jogged forward, and held her hand out, just short of the surface of the Sphere.
"Just say when," she said nervously. Will touched the side of the Fire Auramere, and then nudged Taranee, who was standing frozen next to her. Taranee took a deep, shuddering breath, and tapped the very tip of her finger against the two Energy nexuses. Before even the skittish Fire Guardian could flee, the new-born Heart of Fire had emerged, settling into her retreating hand. Taranee stared down at it in wonder, then looked up at Will. "I know what's wrong, Will. And I'm going to make it right." With that mysterious missive, Taranee performed a great leap, bounding up and over all the other's heads and back out of the room towards the Chamber of the Congregation.
"I'll, uh … I'll stay with her," Peter chattered, and scooted after his sister.
"Oracle?" Hay Lin cheeped, fluttering up to his eye-level. "Are these things safe?" She flipped her own new Heart up with an extra-hard flap of her wings. He grinned reassuringly at her, and Yan flapped up to settle a wing over her granddaughter.
"We've used them once ourselves," Yan told her. "Long ago during a search for a cure for a poison Queen Weira was stricken with." She hung her head then. "Sadly, it was too many years before the fall of Nerissa, and she did not remember the Aurameres' views on cooperation. Cassidy sacrificed herself needlessly for that."
"Not needlessly, old friend," the Oracle corrected gently. "With nobility." Their eyes were sad for a moment. "But she is back with us now," he amended with a smile. "Now, what does your Heart tell you, happy Hay Lin?"
"That Irma's next!" the hyper bird-girl peeped. She dove away in a dizzying spin to alight on her oldest friend's head, and looked down at her and Cornelia. "Irma Lair, come on down! You're the next contestant on 'This Heart's for you!'"
Cornelia started laughing, and Irma pushed the plant-girl away. "This day better have a happy ending, 'cause the morning sure isn't shaping up too well," Irma rumbled, getting to her feet. Stomping her way over to the Water Auramere, she eyed Will speculatively. "You know, you're getting out of this easy, Will. The Heart of Candracar won't screw with your head, at least."
"Says who? I've still gotta make all the tough decisions," the red-and-yellow rodent countered. She held out the Heart against the Auramere, and Irma placed one stubby hand against the surface of the Orb where the two met. The Heart of Water flowed out, and Irma lifted it to put it over her head, only to run into technical difficulties from the length of her arms compared to the curve of her shell.
"Oh, you have got to be kidding me!" Irma swore, looking down at the beautiful turquoise jewel in exasperation.
"Let me," a gentle voice said from behind her. Before Irma could turn to find out who it was, a pair of vines came wrapping around her, lifted the jewel gently from her hand, and draped it around her neck. The gem in the necklace tinkled as it bumped against her shell. Irma turned to see Cornelia, contrite expression in her huge eyes, which matched Irma's new Heart.
"Can't forget. Plants need Water to live, too … don't they?" Cornelia asked. Irma 'tump'ed forward and embraced with her floral friend.
"I'm sorry, too, Cornelia," she choked out. "You know me. Sarcasm's my chosen weapon in life. How else would I make it as a hit Dee-Jay?" The four Guardians still in the room all laughed together.
"Okay, let's go see what epiphany has Taranee's britches burning," Will said, and the others laughed harder as they filed out of the room in search of their missing Fire primate.
"Huh," Luba said quietly, watching them go. "They might get through this in one piece after all."
(Author's note:) Here ends W.i.t.c.h.'s prequel for "Sorry, Wrong Channel!" As soon as the other participants are up-to-speed, we'll be seeing our girls in action again, so fear not faithful readers! Don't forget to leave a review on the way out, and we'll catch ya on the flipside. Thanks for reading, A J.