Disclaimers: I don't own Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Supernatural or Stargate: SG-1. Obviously, I'm not making any cash on these.
Series Summary: Adventures in Ascension for John Winchester and Buffy Summers. Supernatural/BtVS/SG-1. A series of one-shots.
Note: Setting is pretty obvious; post season 1 for SPN, several years post Season 7 for Buffy. Very light on the SG-1 crossover, but it's late in the seasons of SG-1.
Summary: Ascended Buffy decides not to tell John about her past with words alone. More John/Buffy than the first story.
She'd gotten the idea from his journal. It wasn't real. Well, it was real, but it wasn't "the" real journal. Yet, he told her it contained everything he knew about his profession. And other stuff, too. He didn't tell her much about the other stuff, but Buffy figured it had to do with the sons he'd left behind.
Then Buffy had a thought. Which, as everyone knew, led to dangerous happenings.
As it turned out, there were things that were against the Ascension rule book, and then there were things that weren't. Like certain powers. Abilities.
The odd thing was, everyone up in Ascended Land kept unusually tight-lipped around Buffy and John. When Buffy tried to call them on it, they asked about the one who'd guided them to ascension. As in, who? Buffy didn't have an answer, and, for some reason, not having an answer led to the other ascended ones taking off in the other direction. Apparently, they had some powerful enemies in another universe and none of them were willing to risk befriending the new kid for fear of a Narc in their mist.
Buffy wasn't sure what that was about. Finally, though, she'd found a guy from a planet called Asbestos, totally still rocking the "newbie" vibe himself, and he filled her in on a few things he'd learned from a woman named Oma.
Again with the Oma.
Buffy was really starting to wish she'd met this lady.
"So, by create…you actually mean 'create'. "
"On these planes, yes. There are many things you do not yet know," he confirmed. There was a twinkle in his eye. "I must go. The Others do not care for us interacting with you."
And then Mr. Asbestos had glowed her off. Buffy was starting to think someone upstairs didn't like her very much.
There was something comforting in the deep rasp of his voice. "Didn't take you for much of a reader."
"Hey!" Her offended vibe lasted all but a second before she shrugged. "I've got a feeling both of us ended up clocking more library hours than we would have liked," she replied.
John didn't disagree.
Buffy closed the double doors behind them, resisting the urge to look out the tiny windows, knowing it would somehow hurt worse if she saw white nothingness instead of a busy school corridor. She rested her hand against the grain of the wood a moment before she turned back to John. Well, she'd intended to look at John, but she was too transfixed by her surroundings to concentrate on much else.
"Those upper-level Others can talk smack about the lower planes all they want, but they sure don't flake out on the world building down here." She stepped further into the room, eyes searching the shelves, checking behind the counter. A part of her expected to see Giles stepping out of his office, ready to give her an assignment. Or Willow, leaning over a stack of books being propped up by a snoozing Xander.
But the library was empty. Which was good. It was why she'd placed it here.
"Looks like we're in a school."
Buffy nodded, "That's what I… I mean, when I first met most of my friends, we were... You know the watcher I mentioned? He worked as a librarian at my high school, so we'd meet here, find out what we could on the latest Big Bad. That and eat donuts." She finally pushed the emotion back down enough to spare John a small smile. "Granted, this isn't the same place. We blew my old high school up. Giant evil snake problem. You know, demons aren't as pretty when they ascend, which I think they left out of the manual up here."
"Blew it up?" John's eyes widened in mock surprise. "You?"
"I give you 'giant snake' for a second time, and you get hung up on the explosives?" She shook her head. "If it helps, we didn't blow it up when they re-built. We sank that one. And the town, too."
John wasn't listening. Buffy could tell because of the look in his eye. It wasn't quite the "I've purposely zoned you out" expression she sometimes received from Xander when she discussed heel height versus skirt height. No, this was a different expression altogether. And the last time she'd seen it on a man's face…
John's mind was elsewhere, but his eyes were right there. On hers. And they were filled with regret, a regret which had nothing to do with what eventually came out of his mouth.
"I wonder how long I was there," he finally said, "in the diner."
Buffy didn't need to ask what he meant. Here, on the planes of the ascended, time had a way of slipping away when you weren't paying attention. Especially without a guide to help you through the levels… Buffy almost grinned at that thought. If she ever got a chance to tell her friends about ascension, she just knew Andrew was going to compare it to a video game. Because, truth be told, she'd almost made a "level up" joke when she'd figured out that their "powers" increased whenever they became more "enlightened."
Yeah, there was a reason why Buffy hadn't wanted to be a theology major… Or a game designer.
"I'd still be there if it weren't for you." John stepped away from the admission quickly. He cleared his throat, pocketed his hands, and nodded toward the line of books laying out on the closest table. "So, I'm guessing we're not here to return an overdue book."
"Not so much." Buffy led him to the chairs but sat on the table top in front of him, lifting a heavy-looking tome onto her lap and turning it in his direction. There was no title across the leather binding. She chewed her lip a little. "This is me."
John stared up at her, one eye brow raised. Buffy was really starting to like his I'm-amused-and-oblivious face. It was kind of adorable on his manly-man exterior. Still, adorable or not, it didn't help with the nervous fluttering in her stomach. Were you still supposed to be able to feel that as a glowy figure? Seemed unfair.
"This is my life, pretty much." She let out a breath, tried to smile, and failed. "Buffy, A-Z. I got the idea from your journal. I just concentrated on it, and it began to write itself. Anyhow, I figured that, if the rest of the ascended world is going to try its best to ignore us, that kind of makes us each others only friends. And friends share things."
Buffy handed it to him, partly to hide how badly her hand was shaking, thank you, rattled nerves. Another one of those things she figured shouldn't be happening to someone without a body.
John took the book from her and sat it down on the next chair, not sparing it a second glance. "I think we've shared," he said.
Buffy knew there were a couple different ways to take his reaction. On the one hand, she could have been outraged that he'd chosen not to learn her deepest, darkest secrets. Of course, on the other hand. . . Buffy knew he could see the fear on her face. Because offering John that information wasn't easy.
She hadn't been lying. On this plane, he was maybe her only friend. And he was a hunter in his dimension. Buffy couldn't know how he'd react to some of the things she'd done in her life.
Buffy leaned down across the front of the table, her legs falling on either side of him. She caught his eyes for just a moment, then caught his lips. He was frozen for a split second before he rose from his seat, pushing the kiss deeper.
Buffy pulled away for a breath that instinct told her she still needed. "There's something else… These other books." She glanced the brimming shelves. "They're about the ascended. And there's one, it has to do with the Earth closest to us. It's not yours or mine, John. Which was a bit of a let down. But there's some stuff about it…Some things we could learn."
John raised a hand. The fingers felt as hard, as callused, as they had been in life, when they cupped her cheek, but the gesture itself was gentle.
"Later," he said, that thick rasp back to his voice. "We've got time."
Then, he did the catching.