- Character Bashing
- Permanent Injury
- Alternate Universe
Title: Dissonance (Weilder 2)
Fandom: Buffy: the Vampire Slayer/Doom (2005 movie)
Genre: Alternate Universe
Relationship(s): Xander Harris/John “Reaper” Grimm; Samantha Grimm/Elis Caique (OC)
Content Rating: PG-13
Warnings: Permanent Injury (Xander’s vision)
Word Count: 1251/30000
Summary: John and Samantha Grimm are settling into their new environment while Xander is adjusting to his new way of seeing the world when news comes from an unexpected quarter to warn them that the past isn’t quite finished with them yet.
Alexander Harris took the bowl as it was handed to him and breathed in the heady aroma. He could smell the elk meat mixed in with the vegetables favored by the Lrantu tribes, and the different spices used First Meetings. There was also a touch of wariness in the air. Alex wasn’t sure if that was because of the presence of the silent, but nonetheless imposing bodyguard at his back, or his own presence.
Alex had known about the arcane longer than he’d been ignorant of it and he’d learned to pay as much attention to what wasn’t said as what was. Communication wasn’t always about what an entity said or even how they said it. You could learn as much about a person by how closely they adhered to their own protocol’s, or how they reacted when you confronted them with something unexpected.
Once upon a time, Alex would have been nervous entering a demon tribe’s territory, with impaired eyesight, a mystical artifact he couldn’t quantify, and an armed soldier at his back he’d known less than six months.
Once upon a time, he’d felt as if he had each foot in two separate worlds, but he hadn’t truly belonged in either one.
Samantha Grimm watched intently as She’Baru spread the poultice over the rough skin of the man who had come to her for treatment of an injury he’d received hunting that morning. She had made the poultice herself using some local herbs, but she wasn’t sure how effective it could really be.
She and her brother had been living in the Kre’ot village for nearly three months, as near as she could tell, and it was an adjustment. When they had first arrived in this world Samantha was still recovering from what had happened on Olduvai and was trying to adjust to the changes in her own body from the C24. The world she had known was gone. And this one had seemed, at first to be similar. Perhaps it was on a different timeline or a different level of advancement, but still, some things were still familiar.
However, that all changed when she realized that this new world had things hers did not, or at least if hers had, she had never known about it. Demons and magic and mysticism were way out of her comfort zone. She was a scientist. She was used to dealing with quantifiable facts and basic elements that were known and understood.
This world was filled with things that couldn’t always be explained, objects that had as much life and energy in them as she did. She wasn’t sure how she fit in here, but she wanted to try. She needed to find some place here where she could fit, where she could make a place for herself.
Three days ago She’Baru, the village healer had come into the tent Samantha was sharing with Elis and stood just inside staring at her, waiting. Sam wasn’t sure what she was waiting for until she huffed and stepped further inside, thumped her Thambo’lir on the ground and spoke with stilted English. “You come with me.”.
She’Baru led her to an area on the other side of the village where three tents were connected together. She led Samantha inside and sat her down on a pile of blankets before handing her a wood box with hand carvings on it.
Inside the box were stacks of some sort of animal hide that looked as if had been bleached in the sun. Each one had some sort of image drawn onto it. Each had a picture of some sort of plant, vegetable, or a diagram. Underneath the image were carefully printed words in the Kre’ot written language.
Alex had been trying to teach her and John the language. They were picking up the spoken language a lot faster than the written. Sam tried to hand the box back. “I, uh…don’t read your language.”
She’Baru huffed and went over to a table and took out what looked like a book made up on more of those pieces of animal hide, though these were bound together with some sort of twine. She flipped through it as if she was verifying its contents and then brought it to Samantha. “You will learn.” She said firmly.
Sam blinked at her and took the book. This one seemed to be some sort of handmade guide. Each page had a drawing of some sort of plant, along with a diagram of the moon and the earth that she thought were supposed to represent the time of the month or year. She assumed it had something to do with optimal times for growing or harvesting.
Samantha looked back up at the healer. “I don’t understand.”
She’Baru smiled softly at her and placed the curved end of her Thambo’lir against Samantha’s chest, just over her heart. “Jesh’ar.”
Sam blinked again. She had no idea what She’Baru was trying to say. She really needed to talk to Alex.
Rupert Giles took his place at the head of the long table and looked around the room. It had been a while since he’d had such a full house at one time. He was surprised that both Dawn and Buffy were here. They very rarely visited at the same time.
“I guess we should get started.” He said. “Greece? You want to start?”
He listened with interest as each of the people around the room reported on their particular geographic location. Nothing unexpected was reported until they got around to Lara Mason.
“I have something odd,” Mason said.
“Odd how?” Buffy asked with a frown. “Not a fan of odd.”
“I’m not sure. Lisbeth was doing a routine inventory of one of the storage vaults and one of the artifacts was…broadcasting.”
“Broadcasting,” Giles repeated slowly. “Broadcasting what exactly?”
“Yes. It’s not unheard of. Sometimes there will be an object that turns itself on and emits some sort of signal or magical hum. It could be waiting for a response.”
“Are the vaults protected so that sort of thing can’t happen?” Buffy asked.
Willow nodded. “Yes, but some of the stuff in that vault is a mystery. We don’t know what it is or what it does.” She paused. “Xander retrieved most of that stuff, and we haven’t been able to get it to respond to us since he brought it home.”
“Okay.” Buffy paused. “Do we have anyone else who can get information on those items?”
“Maybe. I’ll look into it.” Giles said.
“You can’t locate Xander?” Loraine Randolph asked.
Giles narrowed his eyes as the Slayer. She wasn’t normally at these meetings but she’d been doing a lot of the field training for the Slayers at headquarters.
“I might be able to,” Willow admitted. “I just need to research it a little more.”
Giles pinched the bridge of his nose. “Willow. Xander was very clear. He does not want any more interference.”
She frowned and bit her lip and then looked away. Giles wasn’t sure if that was agreement or not, but he’d take it.
Dawn Summers observed the meeting quietly as she took notes on the various items up for discussion. When Xander’s name was mentioned she continued writing, even though she desperately wanted to press Willow and Giles for details. Neither one of them were specific when they told her Xander had left the Council.
She wasn’t sure what had happened, but she knew of at least one place she could find him.