quinara: Wishverse Buffy in a white frame. (Buffy Wish white box)
Quinara ([personal profile] quinara) wrote in [community profile] sb_fag_ends2011-05-23 07:25 pm

'Pawn Promotes' by Quinara (PG-13)

So, this is Spuffy with a big slice of gen. It's Dawn gen if that's any consolation...?

Pawn Promotes
by Quinara.

Prompt: A Game of Chess (gang warfare).
Setting: AU after The Gift.
Word Count: 1000
Rating: PG-13 for swearing and a mild gory reference. Warning for death.

It takes seven years before Dawn stops being a sacrifice.

Pawn Promotes.

So, OK, here’s the thing. The world’s fucked up. That much you already know.

What you probably don’t know is that I’m the one who fucked it.

“What’re you writing, bit?” Spike asked, cutting through Dawn’s concentration.

She looked up, pen poised to describe their comfy stronghold, trying to remember what it was like not to live in a bricked up box.

Spike's eyebrow was raised; she sighed.

To be honest, they had it pretty good at the Hyperion, better than most, possibly better than everyone since they had four superpowered people on their side, but it was still fucked up. She hadn’t been outside in months. “Oh, you know,” Dawn said, shrugging that thought away. “Just my memoirs. I figure capitalism’s gonna come back any day now; gotta get the product ready.”

“Good idea,” he replied, slumping wearily beside her. The pause hung, waiting for him to add another crack about how much she cost them, the prize they had to defend at the same time as scouting for food, a touch of sarcasm reassuring her that she was still important.

The thing was, she knew it. The thing was, he had no energy for jokes. She went back to writing.

I didn’t mean to, you’ve gotta understand, but that’s the danger of being a kid – you end up becoming something you never meant to. You grow up square as your mom, or go off the rails like your cousin, all because of some choices you didn’t really make. That’s what happened to me. Only I was a sacrifice.

“What’s up, guys?” Buffy greeted them later, coming down the stairs. The moment she saw Spike she paused, glancing at Dawn with a nervous, displaced smile before finishing her descent and hovering, like she wanted another chaperone.

Oh yeah, Dawn decided, looking between the two most important people in her life. (Today their expressions could be classed as bang down the middle of the standard shielded or gooey.) That was another thing she’d fucked up with her not dying. The pair of them practically lived in each other’s pockets, by choice more than necessity these days, but they were both too scared to go any further, all because it was a risk not worth taking. The three of them were together until the end of the world; there was no time for break ups.

Shutting her pen off with a pop, Dawn shrugged this off. “Not much,” she said, gesturing vaguely with her notebook. Her memories didn’t feel worth it anymore.

Nodding, Buffy opened her mouth to reply – but then suddenly came the great, clattering sound of the stronghold door opening in the wind. Faith and Angel were back and they were running in, slamming the door to lean against it. Angel was dazed and staring; Faith was huffing like she’d run a marathon, palms leaning on her knees.

What the…?

“Buffy,” Faith said breathlessly, as if reminding herself, staring at the ground. “Buffy,” she repeated, looking up.

“What is it?” Buffy asked for all of them, her fear, never distant, etching a frown on her face.

“Giles is dead,” Faith replied blankly, changing everything. “We saw him.” She didn’t sound like she could believe it. “It’s over. That part’s over. He’s dead.”

Now the notepad slipped from Dawn’s suddenly rigid knees.

The world’s fucked. The world’s still fucked.



She wasn’t running anymore. No one thought the gang would keep it up without Giles, not Willow and Tara; they’d all known that for a long time. After seven long years they could try – they could try fixing things for real. She could get out of the box. She could get out into the wacky new world and see it properly, with her own eyes. She could…

I’m free.

For Dawn, time stood still. She watched as Angel continued to stare; as Faith hung her head, confused; as Buffy started to shake, eyes widening before she sobbed. It had been too long, too hard and too long, and now Buffy was crumbling – with relief, fear, guilt, grief, with everything Dawn found she couldn’t feel.

She turned to Spike at her side. He was sitting like a coiled spring, weary but not quite gone, eyes fixed on her sister’s pain. Through gritted teeth, Dawn told him, having had enough of standing back, “Move your ass.”

His eyes flashed to hers, uncertain in a face that suddenly looked her younger.

“Move it!” Dawn screeched, not caring, standing up so he would too. The only difference was that he dashed immediately to where Buffy was breaking on her feet, pulling her close. Dawn stayed where she was, picking up her notebook and assuming the authority she knew it was time to take. No more a sacrifice. No more a weight. No more a child. “What happened?” she asked Faith.

The Slayer stared at her, looked over to where Buffy was occupied, at least for the moment, and then looked back, turning her feet towards Dawn. “We found him a block north. Had some shit like he was coming at our wards, but something found him and he got unlucky, gored through and the sand’s all scattered.”

“OK,” Dawn replied, taking that in dispassionately. “OK. As of now we’re on the offensive. Get the gang in here.” She turned a page in the notebook, looking down at the blank paper, mentally making a list of books.

“What about…” Angel asked, finally speaking up, gesturing to the couple now sitting shattered in a corner. The fight had only been in LA six months, so it was understandable he was confused by where their strength had gone.

“They’re taking a break,” Dawn replied all the same, popping her pen again and looking down. There wasn’t time for explanations right now. “They’ve done enough.”

Silence. The sound exhausted sobs and shushing. Acceptance.

Dawn wrote purposefully, to the sound of Faith and Angel’s footsteps.


This was a new world now, and she would take it back.


[personal profile] oceansmama 2011-05-25 05:00 pm (UTC)(link)
But but but I need more! And you described it perfectly, like it's part of a novel...
But where's the novel?
Very interesting. I'd love to read more, if you ever feel like writing...