August 7, 2011 – Going For Help

Summary: **Part of the 2011 LiveJournal's Twisted Shorts August Fic-A-Day** series. After she dies, Cassie finds somebody who can help Buffy and the others fight the First.

Challenge: for the livejournal 2011 August Fic a Day Challenge. And #6471 on TtH.

Timeline: post-season 7 'Help' for BtVS; before Jean dies in the movies.

Warning: cliché moment ahead.

A/N: Almost last-minute substitution; when I came up with my list, I forgot about Cassie until somebody mentioned other less-used characters from the show.

Disclaimer: BtVS and AtS characters belong to Joss Whedon / Mutant Enemy. X-Men characters belong to Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Marvel Comics. I claim no rights to any copyrighted material. Please do not copy or take this story without my permission.

Sunnydale High

As soon as her soul left her body, Cassie looked at Buffy bending over her corpse. Something told her that the counselor would feel guilty about her death – despite the fact she couldn't have stopped it. Cassie was saved from a violent ending, but her death was going to happen today no matter what.

But that's probably the way most heroes felt; like every death near them was their responsibility, whether it was reasonable to think that or not. That had to suck…and was more than just a little depressing.

Suddenly Cassie wanted to help the woman who tried to save her. It was strange considering the fact she was dead, but still…

Almost like magick, Cassie watched the next several months of Miss Summers' life play out before her eyes, ending on the edge of a crater that used to be the town of Sunnydale. Every word, thought and action of the players was etched in her mind.

"Great, I know what I need to do, but how should I do it?" the deceased teen asked herself. She followed Buffy as the police were called and preparations for her funeral were made, musing over the problem.

Since there wasn't anyone else to talk to, Cassie talked to herself, "Okay…so the biggest problem is that she needs back up who have fought before. This is too much for her and her best friends to handle, and obviously the girls on their way won't be of use in time to save the friendships and a bunch of lives."

"But it has to be back up she can trust," another part of her mind argued. "Part of the problem with Faith and Spike is that there's too much history to allow them to be a large part of the solution."

As if somebody whispered in her mind, Cassie asked the question, "What about family? If she had family who could fight, she'd trust them…right?" With that possible answer, she began to search for any family members who could help. A big surprise was that Buffy wasn't truly a Summers – even though she and her parents thought she was.

Her biological mother gave her up because she wanted more for her daughter than she could give; her father didn't know about her at all. Her mother found a baby who had died of SIDS and swapped Buffy, taking the dead child to bury elsewhere.

Checking on the two, Cassie decided that the father would be a better choice to approach. For one thing, he was a good guy; for another, he worked with a telepath, which increased her chances of being able to talk to him.

Xavier's School

'Professor Xavier?' an unknown voice rang in his mind.

'Yes?' he replied silently out of habit. Reaching out with his abilities, the Professor was perplexed when he didn't sense anyone nearby who didn't belong there. 'Who are you and where are you?'

'Thank goodness!' she exclaimed. 'I was hoping you would be able to hear me, but I wasn't sure because I'm dead and all. Oh, my name was Cassie Newton and I used to live in Sunnydale.'

Part of him was shocked by this news, but another part was surprised it hadn't happened before. After all, telepathy was similar in power to ESP. If one believed in the afterlife, then the idea that spirits were able to communicate to the living wasn't so farfetched.

'How can I help you, Miss Newton?' he inquired kindly, assuming she wanted her killer found or something.

Which was why he was unprepared for her response, 'I need you to help somebody save the world.'

'Excuse me?'

'I was almost murdered, but my school counselor saved my life. What she couldn't know was that I was going to die anyway from a congenital heart defect. Anyway, I got a sneak peek at the future, and she's going to need help to save the world or she'll lose everyone she cares about. Well, they won't die or anything, but stuff will happen and they won't trust each other anymore. If her dad and the rest of your X-Men help her, that stuff might not happen,' Cassie quickly related to the kindly old man.

'You aren't being overdramatic, are you?' Xavier asked, somehow already guessing the answer. 'Wait! Are you saying that her father is one of the X-Men?'

'No, I'm not, and yes, he is,' she replied. 'The guy called Logan or Wolverine is her biological father.'

'How do you know this?' he demanded. Before he got Logan's hopes up that he had family, he would be sure.

'I'm dead,' Cassie answered reasonably. 'I can move back and forth in time. Can't change anything directly, but hopefully with your help, I can stop a family from being torn apart.'

Xavier considered the risks of taking the word of a voice only he could hear; the voice of a supposedly-dead girl. 'I will need to verify that she is his daughter with a blood test,' he warned, just in case this was some kind of cruel hoax.

'Oh, she'll demand one too. Or if not her, then her friends will. They won't trust you otherwise,' Cassie assured him.

'Can you tell me who her mother is?' Xavier inquired.

Cassie hesitated, but realized it would have to come out sooner or later. 'Mystique.'

His only reply was, 'I can see why you came to us instead.'

Summers home

A couple weeks later (just after 'Him')…

"So Cassie told you that I would need help fighting some big bad coming up, and that Mr. Short and Snarky over there is my biological father?" Buffy summarized, staring at the bald man in a wheelchair, who was flanked by a bunch of people in black pleather outfits and belt buckles with the letter 'X' on them.

"The short and snarky part actually works for convincing me that he's related to you, Buff," Xander teased his best friend, grinning to ease the tension. They just got Willow back and knew something bad – really bad – was coming. If these people could help and were trustworthy, he didn't want to scare them off.

"Miss Newton told me that one person could make a difference, and she was trying to by helping you," Xavier answered, using a phrase that Cassie assured him meant something to the two women.

Apparently she was right because it made Buffy smile warmly at him. "Okay. I'll trust you a little bit. We'll get our own DNA test done, but I don't want to deal with the family issue until after we've taken care of the evil thing coming after us."

Xavier nodded, telling Logan silently to have patience, "Agreed. To that end, Cassie said she knows where there's a weapon meant for the Slayer and where to find the person who made it; a woman called the Guardian."

"A weapon?" Buffy asked, perking up visibly. "Is it sharp and shiny?"

A/N: I know it moved fast and people were a bit OOC, but time and word limits made me do it this way. This is definitely one story I feel like coming back to at a later time to flesh out more.

Tomorrow's (hopeful) fic: Clem/House.