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Fic: "Dreamchain" (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, PG) - Part 1 of 7

Alrighty then... one year to the day after I posted my first story on LiveJournal, I'm posting Part One of story #26. Like the first one, this is a Buffy story.

Title: "Dreamchain" - Part 1 of 7
Author: erimthar
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Rating: PG
Word count: 1,138 for this chapter
Characters: Buffy, Giles, Xander, Willow, others
Warnings: No spoilers, really. Some adult language and sexual references.
Summary: Two Slayers from two different times share an important connection.
Notes: Takes place partly in early season 5, and partly in 1933 or thereabouts.

It’s good to get paid.

That’s the thought that was going through my head when I unlocked the door to my office, which up until that morning had had the words “SIDNEY GREEN, DEMON HUN” proudly painted on the window. The sweet payday I’d gotten from the Axelrod case meant I could finally pay that bastard of a sign painter to finish it. “Demon Hunter” should attract a lot higher class of clientele than “Demon Hun.” I didn’t really need to hear from people who were actually in the market for a barbarian from Hell in a horned helmet. Word was, that Hitler fella over in Germany already had all of them on payroll, anyway.

So with a spring in my step and a fat billfold in my pocket, I switched on the light and went over to my desk to make sure all my vital equipment was in order. Luger, check. Crucifix, stakes, holy water… check. Even holier water (bourbon)… check.

First things first… I took out the bourbon and got ready to kick off another productive night of work. Like always, I took off my hat and tossed it jauntily across the room at the hatrack, like private dicks always do in the pulps. And like always, I missed by a country mile. But this time, the hat didn’t make it to the floor. Instead, it came to rest in a lovely brown hand, which happened to be attached to a lovely brown girl. Cho.

Cho was the other good thing that came out of the Axelrod case.

She was Korean, and beautiful. She’d just turned eighteen, which was mighty nice of her. And she could handle herself in a fight with the kind of style, grace, and flat-out strength that would make Max Baer swallow his gum and give up the ring for good.

Cho was one of a kind. Well, one-at-a-time of a kind, at least.

“Nice catch,” I said, pouring myself a bourbon. “That hat’s ratty enough as it is without spending any more time on the floor.”

She smiled and, without looking, flipped the hat over her shoulder, where it came to rest neatly atop the hatrack.

“Nice,” I said. “Your Slayer training teach you how to do that?”

“No,” she said. “Charlie Chaplin movie.”

(Since those are her first lines in this story, this might be a good time to say her pretty, exotic accent did wonders for a man of the world like myself. I won’t say it every time she talks, but you’ll know I’m thinkin’ it.)

Cho and I had met three weeks earlier when we’d run into each other – literally – creeping around the Axelrod estate, which had fallen into the hands of a demon cult that was very good at fooling the authorities into thinking they were human, and therefore had to be dealt with on the QT by people like me and her.

We’d hit it off, kinda.

“Are you drinking already?” she accented, exotically.

“I sure am, doll,” I assured her. “I got twelve years of Prohibition to make up for, and God only knows how little time to do it in.”

“You drank all through Prohibition, did you not?”

“Hell, yes. But that was illegal drinking. Now I gotta balance the scales by having a legit drink for each illegal one I had. It’s the only way to make things right, morally speaking, and atone for my wayward… ways.”

She gave me a bewildered look with those purty almond eyes of hers.

“That’s a gorgeous dress you’re wearing,” I said. “Very Hollywood. New purchase?”

“Yes,” she said, pleased that I’d complimented it. “Mr. Hardy said that I could buy it, to look like an American. I saw Barbara Stanwyck wearing one like it in the picture shows. I like her very much.”

“Yeah? Me too.” Only for different reasons than you do. I hope. “Speaking of the stuffy English fella, how is he?”

“He is still in the hospital. And do not say that he is stuffed. He is my Watcher.”

“Lucky him. Can I watch too?”

She smiled at that, and didn’t beat me up. Good sign.

“He sent me here to speak to you. I need your help.”

Cradling my bourbon, I took a seat behind my desk and put my feet up. “I’m all ears.”

“Have you ever heard of the Tiberius Manifesto?”

I considered. “Can’t say as I have. Is that some kind of Commie book?”

“Mr. Hardy says it is a translation of a manuscript from many centuries ago. It describes the tricks that the demons and vampires use to scourge our world, and how they can be defeated. It has been lost for many years. But I know where to find it, and I know that we must find it.”

“Pardon… you know all this how, exactly?”

“I dreamed it.”

“You dreamed it? Sweetheart, dreams are just dreams. Which in my case, is a good thing for the world at large.”

“You are not a Slayer,” Cho said grimly. “When we dream, many die. What we do decides whether it is people who do the dying, or demons.”

The look in her eyes told me all I needed to know.

“So,” I said, finishing off my bourbon. “Looks like we got a book to check out.”

* * * * *

“You look terrible, Buffy.” Giles was in one of his direct moods.

“Thanks,” Buffy said with a glare. “Would you like to add that I look fat in these jeans, and Dawn is prettier than me?”

Giles gave her that sideways glance that indicated he was going to opt out of the banter this time around. “My concern is as your Watcher and friend, not as your adoring entourage. Have you been getting enough sleep?”

“I’ve been getting plenty of sleep,” Buffy yawned. “But the last few nights, the only rest I’ve been getting has been when I’m awake.”

Concerned Giles look. “Really? Have you been having disturbing dreams? Buffy, you need to tell me when…”

“Yeah, yeah. I know. Slayer dreams, prophecy, blah blah blah. It’s kind of hard to tell when your regular dreams are also all about demons and mayhem and apocalypses… apocalypsi?”

“What have the dreams been about?” Giles asked patiently. “Has there been a recurring theme?”

Buffy thought. “The old favorites. Fear, confusion, mayhem. Fire, sirens, looting. Big-scale stuff. More Michael Bay than Stanley Kubrick.”

“Thank heavens for popular culture,” Giles sighed.

“…And a creepy narrator… Vincent Price, I think? Talking about something called St. Vigeous Fire.”

Giles started visibly. Buffy hated it when he did that.

“Buffy… think carefully… did you say St. Vigeous Fire?”

“No, Vincent Price did. But those were the words.”

“Oh, dear.”

Buffy threw herself back in her chair with a heavy sigh. “I hate Oh dear.”



Continued in Part 2...

Comments

Thanks... me too. :-)
Oh, I'm liking this very much! Your OC's have me totally intrigued. I haven't read any pulpy detective stuff in a while, and throwing in a pretty Slayer and a few demons can only help.

Looking forward to more!
Thank you... Sid isn't technically an OC, but you haven't seen him like this before.
Buffy!fic + 1930s references = ultimate win. I can't wait for the rest!
Thanks... Part Two by Thanksgiving!
WOOHOO!!!! AWESOME Start!!!
Thanks, glad you're liking it.