Chapter Fourteen: Life
I do not own Harry Potter or Buffy characters, series story lines, etc -> they belong to their respectable creators.Time line:
Post-Chosen for Buffy. Post-OotP (fifth book) for Harry Potter… therefore no DH spoilers. This would be because it was after this book that I wrote this. Buffy was 22 at the end of the series, so we’ll say that she meet Harry shortly after and married him. Which would actually make sense with their actual time lines because Harry was born in 1980 and Buffy was born in 1981. Their daughter is about 3 and Harry and Buffy are about 26-27. This means Harry has been gone for nearly a decade. (He ran off after Sirius died, I believe). Summary:
Buffy and Harry Potter have long pretended to be normal, their past secrets hid from the other. But reality came into play as their daughter is kidnapped, husband and wife must try individually to find a way to bring her back, while pretending to be normal for the other.
Harry yelled to her, yelling her name over and over again. The others looked on n pain. They all loved her. She was just as much family to them. But Buffy did not stir. Her heart already gave up. Her breath empty.
Xander looked at her body and clenched his teeth in anger. He turned to Willow, hope in her eyes. “Willow.” He spoke with a strong voice, an ordering tone.
Harry looked at him in confusion. Willow looked with regret and sadness. “No Xan, not this time.”
Xander abruptly stood, horrified by her answer. “Why, Willow? She’s our best friend. We have to!” His voice cracked. It was no longer strong. It was weak, pleading.
“Xander…” Giles turned to look at the hurting boy. “We’ve saved her one too many times.”
Willow wiped her tears from her face only to have more fall.
“Third times the charm,” Faith whispered looking at her fallen sister slayer.
Harry looked at the four of them with confusion. But he realized now, perhaps really for the first time, his loving wife had kept as many secrets as he. Now, he regretted ever lying in the first place.
Lily, within all this, was left forgotten amongst the horror. Holding on to Draco’s hand, her eyes were wide with terror. Both her parents were in front of her by merely a few yards; yet neither seemed to notice her. Her mommy was now on the ground surrounded by strangers and friends. Her daddy was one of them. And a few feet from them was Mr. Moldywart.
Draco felt the girl trying to break free from his hold. But he would not let go, he would not let this child know the same pain his own felt. No, not even Harry Potter’s daughter. No child deserved to see their parent die. And now, both hands of the two children he held on to had seen their mothers die at the hands of the Dark Lord. And now, even he was dead, killed by Harry Potter’s muggle wife, this little girl’s mother.
Draco turned away; he did not want to watch the scene in front of him. Dumbledore, standing beside him, walked forward. He looked down on the petite figure.
Dumbledore placed a hand on Harry’s shoulder, a fatherly gesture. Cold eyes filled with anguish and tears looked up at him. Harry looked dead, right along with his wife. Dumbledore said nothing to him, he merely pointing in the direction of a little girl with light blond hair and bright green eyes, a small child clutching the hand of Draco Malfoy.
Harry’s eyes grew wide and he drew away hesitantly from Buffy. He rose up and walked several steps to his little girl.
He fell back on to his knees in front of her and embraced the tiny girl, so much like her mother. Harry wrapped his arms around Lily’s form and felt a hint of gladness. He still had her, he still had some family left, he still had Lily, and Harry was beyond happy that she was safe, unharmed.
Lily shook in her father’s arms. Her tears stained his shirt. Harry knew that as scared as she was, Lily was just as happy to see him, to be in her daddy’s arms, just as he was to hold on to her. But Harry felt a longing for something else, someone else, someone who lay in a heap only feet away.
Harry did not know what would happen now. He knew not what he would do. His wife dead, his daughter though here. Harry did not know if he could return to his home, he did not know if he could bear walking without her into the life he had worked so hard to build. The only thing his mind could conclude was that he wanted her back. He needed her back.
Her friend’s words came back to him. ‘This time.’ ‘One too many times.’ ‘Third times the charm.’ Harry’s eyes darted from his daughter to the group still surrounding his wife.
“What did you mean?”
Four pairs of eyes stared back at him confused. Giles was the one to respond, “What do you mean, Harry?”
“’This time,’ what did you mean?” He yelled frustrated.
Xander, Faith, and Giles looked around as if to avoid answering him. But under the sad gaze, Xander cracked, “Buffy died before.”
Faith’s eyes looked up too. “Twice.”
Harry’s eyes grew wide with horror and surprise. His words stuck in his throat. “How?”
Xander stood now, facing his best friend’s now widowed husband. “She was 16, she drowned, I brought her back using CPR.” Harry breathed in, Xander followed suit before continuing, “Then a few years later, a little while after her mother died, Buffy fell from a tower and Willow brought her back a couple months later.”
Faith looked at her sister slayer and smiled. “Cliff notes version of it.”
Harry looked at her strangely then down at his wife. “How did she bring Buffy back?”
Willow, Xander, and Giles exchanged a questioning look. None of them answered. Harry repeated his question again, louder and angrier. Still, none answered.
That was, until a sweet voice came, “She worked her nasty wiccian mojo.”
“Buffy!” Willow cried, the first to dive down to the now alive and alert Buffy.
“Hey Wills!’ Buffy hugged her and smiled at the many staring at her. “Why so sad?”
Xander’s eyes widened. “You were dead, Buff. Cold. Quiet. Still. Dead.”
Buffy’s face showed confusion. “Xan, I wasn’t dead. No heavenly place and no long-lasting hells.”
Harry looked at his wife, simply sitting here. She was alive. The curse didn’t kill her. “But… how?” It came out as a whisper, muttered so softly under his breath. But Buffy heard and she turned to him with a sad smile.
“It wasn’t my time Har, I’m still needed. You need me. Lily needs me. My sister needs me. My friends need me. And those damn PTB need me too.”
Harry looked at her, as if seeing her for the first time. And she confused every part of him. This wasn’t the Buffy Anne Summers he had fallen in love with and he realized he wasn’t the same Harry James Potter that she had fell for. And together, through all their secrets, they had a child. A child of two worlds, two secrets- Lilia Joyce Potter. And here they both were, the two women of his life. Here. Safe. Alive.
Dumbledore looked across the hall and ordered the students to their common rooms. “Now, I believe Mrs. Potter should be taken to the medical ward and checked over.”
Buffy shook her head. “No. I’m fine. See. Moving, breathing, smiling!” A smile crept onto her face. “Buffy and hospitals are a big no no!”
Harry couldn’t help but smile in the mists of all of this. No, it wasn’t the exact same Buffy he had fallen in love with, but there she was nonetheless, the woman he loved.
With Lily’s hand in his, he walked over to his wife. Buffy looked up at the two of them with a wide smile on her face. Buffy held her arms out. “Come here Lily!” Buffy ordered happily. Grinning, the little girl ran into her mother’s arms. Buffy closed her eyes and couldn’t imagine being anywhere… well, any world… besides here, with her family.
Harry turned to Dumbledore. “I’m taking my wife and daughter home. We can talk later, but not now.”
Dumbledore attempted to begin to protest but Harry turned away. He bent down and scooped up his small wife. Buffy shook her head believing she could walk herself, but smiled cause secretly, she rather not.
Lily tilted her head up at her parents and let out a small yawn. “Mommy, daddy, can we go home now?” Her innocent face looked up on hope.
“Yes, my love, we are going home.”
Instantly, Buffy and Lily fell asleep, cuddled together in Harry and Buffy’s bed. Harry couldn’t take his eyes away from them. He was so glad that they were here. He was so glad he ran away all those years ago, that he met Buffy and fell in love with her. He couldn’t imagine life any differently than it was now.
A little while after they had arrived back, Giles appeared in the doorway. Harry turned to him. He saw the fatherly concern flash on Giles’ face as he watched Buffy sleep.
“She’ll be okay, right?” Harry found himself asking.
Giles nodded. “It’s Buffy, she will be.”
Harry nodded, happy for the little reassurance that he gave. He then bit his lip and looked up at him, at the father-in-law that had welcomed him into their large, but close family. “Dumbledore called you Rupert Riddle. You…”
Giles nodded bringing his glasses down to wipe them. “Yes Harry, my name is Rupert Giles Riddle. After Tommy’s… breakdown, I took Jocelyn and the girls to America and left them there where the ministry would never find them. Unfortunately, we found out that Bethany had been called as a slayer and through some convincing, I was assigned to her. I trained her, taught her all I could, guided her, and loved her as her father and step-father had not. And she became the greatest slayer ever to live. She faced and killed more vampires and demons than any other slayers in the past- or the present. She did it with a merry clan of friends, against all order from the council. Because of them, Bethany survived… with a few glitches. Her life was hard. She was faced with ungodly situations and she made it through. But she had no idea of what was of her life as a toddler. For Jocelyn changed their names. Bethany Callista Riddle was no longer. She became someone else.”
Harry breathed in. “Buffy.”
“Yes Harry. Buffy.” Giles turned to leave before turning just slightly as he closed the door. “She’ll be alright. You both will.”
His wife was the daughter of his enemy. Voldemort’s daughter. How ironic was that? Had he know that before, he knew he would never have stepped foot near her. But now, he couldn’t bring himself to leave her, to hate her. She was still his wife, his life.
“Har?” A small voice came from his wife’s lips.
“Yes love?” He whispered back stepping over to her and sitting at the edge of their bed. His hand cupped her face and she pressed her check against it.
Harry simply nodded and slid in next to her, wrapping his arms around her. Buffy sighed and rested her forehead on his chest. Harry kissed the top of her head and tightened his grip on her.
“Harry,” Buffy whispered painfully. “I’m sorry.”
“Buffy, don’t be. We both kept secrets.” Buffy tilted her head to look clearly at him.
“What’s yours?” Curiosity pulled her and she wondered what he possibly hid.
Harry, on the other hand, though she had figured it out already. Realizing that she hadn’t, he told her. He told her everything. With unexpected calmness, his wife listened as he made his way through his life story. And in the end, she simply nodded and kissed him.
How easy would it have been to tell her before? But he hadn’t. And because of that, his daughter had been risked, his wife had been risked, hell, he had been risked. He shrugged these thoughts off. What did it matter now? It was over with. Voldemort was dead and their secrets were out and still he lay here with his wife and their daughter.
Harry smiled. Life for him, it would never be normal. But at this moment, he didn’t give a damn that it wouldn’t be.
There! Done! Yay! I hope you enjoyed- even if the end was rushed and not so good- I’ve always sucked at endings! Please review!
Oh and I will be posting a little holiday ficlet for this story and my fanart story This Little Secret of Mine in a day or two! (That was the reason I wanted to get this done with before Christmas- so I could post that one!)
Please review and make me happy!