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Kill Will: vol I

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  • Kill Will: vol I

    Title: Kill Will: vol I
    Description: A fic featuring Willow & Kennedy set between season 7 & 8 of Buffy.
    Disclaimer: Not mine... Oh, you know.


    ***

    The room was large and impeccably decorated in a style that spoke of a familiarity with the tradition and customs of the mystical east. Fabrics hung from the walls and ceiling in swathes and across the floor were strewn what seemed like a score of expertly woven rugs, resplendent in their colourful patterns. In the midst of this opulence sat two figures, a hookah nestling between the cushions on which they perched. Eventually, after a long moment of silence, the smaller of the two figures spoke.

    "You realise, of course, that the matter will not be an easy one?"

    The other looked up, seeking the speaker's eyes. "Which is why I came to you directly, venerable one, to seek your council as well as your aid."

    "You're actions show wisdom." The first replied "Although you should be aware that I am by no means certain that we will be able to offer you the aid you speak of." He paused, taking a deep draw from the hookah and blowing the aromatic smoke high into the air "The Order of Taraka has existed for centuries." He continued. "Ours is the hidden hand that has helped shape dynasties, change the direction of mighty conflicts and bring swift destruction to the most powerful of empires." He paused again, obviously choosing his words with care "The Slayer and her associates, however, are a different matter entirely. We have had our dealings with this particular Slayer already, as I am sure you are aware. Regrettably the endeavour was not concluded to our satisfaction, nor to that of our client." There was another pause, another soft cloud of smoke. "I am afraid that the cost to the order was?substantial. Reputation, after all, is so very important in our particular craft."


    The second figure allowed the silence to reign for a while, waiting until it was happy the other had finished before replying.

    "I understand your caution, venerable one; however I implore you to see this as an opportunity, a chance to put right that unfortunate episode in the order's glorious history. I also feel compelled to point out that this is not the Slayer we are discussing but?"

    "An immensely powerful witch? Yes, believe me the order is well aware of Ms Rosenberg, and her abilities." The speaker tilted his head slightly, his expression thoughtful. "Your words are not without merit, however. Perhaps it is fate itself that brings you here today. Perhaps this is the chance for the order to redress the balance, to regain some of the honour it lost in that... unfortunate affair."

    The second figure said nothing, aware that any words could only work to disturb the thoughts of the other, thoughts that seemed to be moving in his favour. He didn't have long to wait.

    "Yes, yes I think we may be able to accommodate you after all. It will not be without its difficulties and it will, needless to say, be very, very expensive but, yes. I believe you have just secured the services of the order." He rose and offered the other his hand "My secretary will discuss the details with you but for all intents and purposes, from this moment on, you can rest easy. Willow Rosenberg is a dead woman."
    Last edited by tangent; 18-03-09, 11:37 PM.
    JUST ENOUGH KILL

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  • #2
    It was the weather more than anything else that struck Willow. She was so used to endless blue skies, the sun beating down out of the clear endless vista like some unblinking eye. The rain, when it came, came hard and fast as if to wash the streets of Sunnydale clean of the blood it had seen.

    Here was different though. Here in rural England the weather seemed to have a thickness to it, a texture that shifted restlessly from day to day. Here the clouds were lower; the rain came not in torrents but in long persistent shifts and what sun she had seen seemed distant and cool to her.

    "I'm cold."

    Willow smiled at the way Kennedy's words echoed her thoughts, something that she had found happening more and more as the pair grew closer and closer in their relationship.

    "Aww, poor sweetie" She said, with perhaps a slight trace of irony lacing her voice. "Don't worry we're nearly there and then, when we've made our little house call and got unpacked, Willow's gonna make sure you're nice and warm." She kissed the young slayer gently on the lips "Maybe she'll even get you a little hot." She added archly.

    "Well?" Kennedy replied, trying with difficulty to hold on to her sullenness, "That might just make up for putting me through all this. I'm still cold now though; and my feet ache. It feels like we've walked for miles, and I still don't know why we couldn't just fly in."

    "I told you," Willow said "Althanea is feeling a little jumpy right now. The portents weren't clear but the coven is still sure that there's something coming that definitely is not of the good." She shuddered "Something dangerous is in the air right now which means that we probably shouldn't be. There's just too much danger of friendly fire from some jumpy warlock

    As the dark haired girl lapsed back into sullen silence Willow reached for her hand and offered her what she hoped was a comforting smile. She knew why Kennedy was being so difficult and it had nothing to do with sore feet or cold hands. Ever since Willow had mentioned the idea of visiting Althanea, keen to escape the growing chaos of the castle and its new influx of slayers, Kennedy had made her thoughts on the subject more than plain and in a way it made perfect sense.

    Willow and Kennedy had begun their relationship in interesting times, possible end of the world type times and they had been swept along by that, wanting to grasp each moment together whilst they could. Since that night below Sunnydale High though, their relationship had changed. It wasn't that they felt any differently about each other but, just as the two of them had begun to think of a real lasting future together the world had exploded around them in a flurry of new Slayers and Wiccans and matters of organisation and mundane duty. It had meant Willow spending more time ensconced with Buffy, Giles and Xander discussing subjects Kennedy had little patience with, it had meant trips to far flung corners of the globe to find places to accommodate the growing number of young girls flocking to Buffy's cause and most of all it had meant more and more time spent apart as both women adjusted to this brave new world of their own making.

    So when Buffy had practically ordered Willow to take a break and get away from it all it probably hadn't been in the young girls mind that they would spend that time visiting a friend from Willows past. Not just any friend either but a woman that Willow had probably mentioned more than just a few times.

    It was fair to say that Althanea's gentle guidance had, along with the fatherly hand of Giles been one of the main reasons she had managed to return from the very brink of power crazed insanity. It had been her calm understanding, her non judgemental patience that had meant so much to her in that hardest of times. Kennedy, of course, had heard all of this and more as the two shared more and more of their lives and it seemed that it was this understanding of the importance of Althanea in Willow's life that was troubling Kennedy now.

    Willow knew that Kennedy felt fiercely protective of her and the developing love that existed between them, even though she was the younger of the two. She jealously guarded her girl from any perceived attack, always watched for any lurking threat, and was always ready to see off any potential rivals for her affections. It was this same watchfulness Willow sensed in her lover now, watchfulness and uneasiness.

    Coming out of her reverie, Willow gave Kennedy's hand a small squeeze.

    "Come on." She said "We're nearly there."
    JUST ENOUGH KILL

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    • #3
      Nearly there turned out to be about ten minutes walk, although, as they crested the last small hill and caught sight of the secluded cottage that served as Althanea's home that walk turned into a run. The two girls careered down the slight incline, Kennedy struggling to keep up with Willow as she sprinted giddily towards the small dwelling. They were perhaps a few yards away when a figure straightened itself from behind a rose bush, secateurs in hand.

      To Willow it seemed like the days and months just peeled back. There was something timeless about Althanea. The tall dark haired woman never seemed to change, never seemed to alter in the slightest detail and it was if a mere five minutes had passed since the two had parted with a hug at this very gate.

      She was a tall, slight woman, what some might call Willowy, although Willow herself had always disliked the description for obvious reasons, but something in her bearing, something in the way she carried herself seemed to lend more weight to her slender frame. There was an aura of calm authority that seemed to emanate from her, a sense of quiet assurance and ease with the world. Willow had no idea of how old Althanea might be, and had been far too polite to ask but something about the woman spoke of a timeless wisdom beyond her apparent youthfulness.

      It was that youthfulness that came to the fore now though as Althanea caught sight of the approaching pair. She flung aside the secateurs and quickly divulged herself of the thick gloves she had been wearing before moving quickly to meet them, a glint of excitement in her large brown eyes as she greeted Willow with a hug.

      "Willow! You made it." She said with a broad smile. "Oh, my dear it's so nice to see you again. I trust you've been well? And this must be Kennedy, who I've heard so much about. Well let's not stand on parade come on in and I'll get the kettle on and you can tell me all your news."
      JUST ENOUGH KILL

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      • #4
        Inside, the cottage was a delightful mess. Every surface seemed to be filled with an assortment of random items, from unopened letters to random bric-a-brac and object-de-art, some undoubtedly magical in nature; and everywhere there were books.

        Spell books and grimoires were piled high on the arms of the leather sofa that dominated the main room, interspersed with trashy looking paperbacks and non-fiction works on subjects as diverse as chaos theory and the industrial revolution. Sitting amongst this literary miscellany like the lord of the manor was the biggest cat that Willow had ever seen, a cat that Althanea now shooed away from, the sofa as she invited the two girls to sit.

        “I’m sorry for the mess.” She said as she made her way to the kitchen “I’ve never really seen the point of tidiness and living on your own I’m afraid one has a tendency to fall into one’s own ways.”

        “How come you don’t live with the rest of the coven?” Kennedy asked, moving a book on digital photography from under her.

        “Well, they tend to get a little stuffy over there, if you know what I mean." The dark haired woman replied “It’s always the same conversations again and again and, to be quite frank, I value having a bit more privacy and independence; it gives me room to think. By the way it’s just generic brand tea I’m afraid. I don’t tend to bother with the fancy stuff.”

        “That’ll do just fine.” Said Willow “Didn’t you say the coven had come up with something big recently though, some rumours of extreme ickiness? I so hope it’s not apocalypsey, cos, between you and me I think we deserve a time out from apocalypsey."

        “You’re not kidding.” Kennedy agreed.

        Althanea came back in for the kitchen with three steaming mismatched mugs in her hand and, with Willows help set them down on a small table before taking a seat herself.”

        “It doesn’t seem to be of that kind of magnitude.” She said as she handed out the tea “What is worrying though is that whatever it is the portents are pointing to seems to have the potential to make a major change to the near future... That and the person it seems to be focused around.”

        Willow caught Althanea’s sombre gaze “And that would be?”

        “I’m sorry honey, but it all seems centred on you.”
        Last edited by tangent; 18-03-09, 11:02 PM.
        JUST ENOUGH KILL

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        • #5
          Willow had been half expecting the answer but it still knocked the breath out of her, causing her to sit back in her seat. As she sat back, kennedy started to her feet.

          "What do you mean it's centred on her?" She asked, Gesticulating in Willow's direction, her voice raised angrily "You couldn't have mentioned this before or given us some kind of, oh I don't know, Warning!"

          Althanea smiled indulgently at the young girl. "What do you think I'm doing?" She asked calmly "We only found out as you were on your way so really this is the soonest I could have brought this up unless you wanted me to greet you with a cheery ?hello, nice to see you, and by the way you're in deadly peril.'"

          "Well, something would have been nice!" The dark haired slayer shouted back "Some kind of heads up. I mean from everything I've heard you're supposed to be this... all knowing wise woman, but it kinda looks like you've dropped the ball on this one and it's Willow that's in the middle of all this? Well sorry if I fail to be impressed. "

          "Ken, don't." It was almost a whisper but it was enough to stop Kennedy in her tracks. "Althanea' done what she can. At least now we know something's on its way and we can get in touch with Buffy and the gang." She turned to the older woman "Any ideas of what this threat is, or when it might rise?"

          "Sorry" Said Althanea "we've used every resource open to us but the signs are just too unclear. It could be weeks or even months away?"

          There was the sound of an explosion from outside the cottage

          "? Or it could be now." She finished
          JUST ENOUGH KILL

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          • #6
            A second blast rang out almost as soon as the words were out of her mouth, this one strong enough to dislodge a couple of the small objects that sat above the fireplace.

            "We have to get out of here!" Kennedy yelled. "Come on, lets go!"

            Althanea carefully placed her drink back on the small table and held up a hand, indicating that the young slayer should calm down.

            "There's really no need to get so excited my dear." She said with a slight smile "The protections around this cottage were put down a long time ago and they will hold out against a surprising range of attacks." She rose and smoothed down her skirt. "Having said that it probably would be an idea to see exactly what it is that's causing all this noise." And with that she strode purposefully over to the door, Willow and Kennedy at her shoulder.

            Outside, the garden was a mess. Great furrows of earth disrupted the once smooth surface of the small lawn and the remains of the picket fence decorated this waste land in an explosion of wood and earth. The protection that Althanea had mentioned was clearly evident though. The rose bushes that the elder Wiccan had been tending with so much care when the two girls had arrived were now glowing with a pale red energy and that energy spread high and wide forming a softly translucent wall that wrapped around the cottage forming a barrier to anything from outside.

            As the trio looked on this defence was tested once more, a blast of golden energy crashing into it, causing the glow to fade slightly where the impact occurred before returning to it's former rosy hue. As the impact faded the source of the blast became clear. A figure stood on the meadow outside the cottage, dressed in archaic looking golden armour that fully encased it, a broad sword and shield clasped in its hands. It was as if an exhibit from some medieval museum had been placed before them. The illusion was soon shattered though as the figure caught sight of them.

            "I would speak to the witch!" it boomed in a hollow voice

            "Which witch?" Althanea shouted back, adding in softer tones "Sorry couldn't resist."

            In reply the figure lifted its sword, its tip pointing unerringly at Willow.

            "Well that was stunningly obvious." Willow replied with a sigh. "Alright, let's get this over with."

            ***

            TBC...
            Last edited by tangent; 18-03-09, 11:39 PM.
            JUST ENOUGH KILL

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