There's No Place


Mal should've known that Zoe'd read his mind. That creepy piercing, no-nonsense gaze of her really should've been a giveaway. That and she'd known him all his life and had a tendency to know exactly what it was he didn't want her to know. But then he supposed, sisters were like that.

He'd been in his room packing up his things when she appeared in his doorway. Mal didn't even need to look up to know she was there. It was like she carried an aura of disapprovin-i-ness and I-told-you-so-ness about her. "You planning on a trip, Mal?"

Even now, that utterly deadpan tone made Mal smirk. He spared a quick glance down at the scruffy little backpack he'd hastily thrown his clothes in before looking up at his foster sister. The dark-skinned girl was leaning casually against the frame of his door, her arms crossed forbiddingly over her chest. Her elven-year-old face was hard as stone, the only suggestion of emotion the light of amusement in her eyes. Only Mal knew how to read that face.

This particular invasion of his thoughts, however, was less than welcome. The little boy glared at his foster sister, sparing a quick glance into the hallway to make sure they were alone. It was too late for Them to still be up, but Zoe's voice could've woken Them. "Y'know, there's a concept been thought up called 'knocking.' It's interesting, might wanna look into that." He was being harsher than usual, but this was one secret Zoe wouldn't understand. The kid sighed at Zoe's unfaltering glare. "Go back to sleep Zo'. Y'ain't gonna stop me."

Zoe cooly raised a single eyebrow. "Who said anything about stopping you?" Mal looked at her in surprise. The corner of her mouth twitched up in the faintest hint of a smirk. "Subtly isn't your strong point, Mal. I saw that letter you got yesterday." Her gaze flitted down to Mal's hand, where said letter was being tightly gripped.

Damn her perceptiveness. The boy crossed the room and put a hand on Zoe's shoulder in an unusual show of emotion. "I gotta go Zoe, don't you see that? If this letter is real, if I'm really a... a iwizard/i, then this is my only chance to get out of here for good!" He looked right into her eyes, willing her silently to understand. "But as soon as I get there I'll find a way to sneak you in. I'll come back for you, I promise."

This was the part where Zoe was supposed to get all serious-like and they were supposed to exchange some solemn oath of sibling-hood and Mal would ride off to get the calvary so he could come back to rescue the damsel in distress. So it was of some surprise to Mal when Zoe just smirked at him with that I-love-you-brother-but-you're-and-idiot look of hers. "I suppose it didn't occur to you to ask me if I got one too?"

Mal blinked stupidly a couple of times. "I might've failed to take that into consideration," he admitted lamely. His distinct feeling of idiocy was slowly giving way to wonder. "Wait, you got one too?"

Zoe nodded, drawing the neatly folded paper out of her pocket. "Wouldn't've believed it, 'cept it's kinda hard to doubt a talking letter," she explained drily.

Mal nodded. The same thought had occurred to him. "I just figured, since we're not actually related, wasn't much chance that we both had magic." The word still felt weird in his mouth. Magic was a concept Mal had long been skeptical of, but like Zoe'd said, not much arguing to be done with a letter that could argue back.

Zoe shrugged. "Both got lucky I guess." Though the girl kept up her stoic appearance, Mal knew that she was excited beyond belief because that excitement was contagious enough for him to catch as well. Finally, after so many years, they were getting out. They were getting ifree/i. Mal looked into the eyes of his sister and realized that, letter or no letter, he never would have been able to leave her. It was him and Zoe against the world.

Mal gripped her shoulder tightly as he fought to keep his excitement out of his voice. "Then get packed quick, Zo'. Soon as we're ready, we're gone." He affected a lop-sided grin that he suddenly didn't care that she saw. "We gotta get ourselves to Hogwarts."

First of all, I just want to say that I knowthe premise to this is cliche and been done a million times before, and yes it's less than creative, but I'm writing this one more for fun than anything. My first real crossover.

And for those of you worried about how this will affect my Warriors and Lion King fanfics, I am determined to continue those as well as this, so I've set a schedule for myself. I must write a chap of a Lion King fix, a chap of this, and a chap of a Warriors fic. So hopefully you'll be seeing more updates from me.

Also, this is inspired greatly by TheShoelessOne's SherlockXHarry Potter crossover, "The Magic of Deduction." If you have not read it, GO READ IT NOW! That story is epic. :D

Firefly and characters (c) Joss Whedon

Harry Potter (c) J.K. Rowling