High Rise.by Dave Turner.
Disclaimer: I do not own the Buffyverse or the song ‘High Rise’ which was written by Bob Calvert, Simon House and performed by ‘Hawkwind’. Neither did I write, perform in or have anything to do with the production of ‘Law and Order UK’. I write these stories for fun not profit.
Crossover: The Buffyverse with the TV show ‘Law and Order UK’ and the song ‘High Rise’.
Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation; Written in glorious English-English, which is different to American-English..
Timeline: Post BtVS 7, no comics.
Words: Six chapters each of 2500+ words.
Warnings: Minor, violence and femslash.
Summary: Law & Order UK xover. Willow and Kennedy take a trip to London. Nights at the Ritz and days spent fighting a demon tower block. Not only is it grim up north, but its also pretty unpleasant down south as well.0=0=0=0Slayer Central, Saltburn-by-the-Sea, Cleveland, Winter 2004
Smiling so hard it hurt, Buffy looked around the newly completed accommodation block and felt like cheering; in fact it was days like this that she didn’t need to take a drink to see her through until night.
“YAY!” Buffy cheered punching the air and nearly giving Giles a heart attack.
“I take it you’re pleased?” Giles asked quietly.
“Pleased?” Buffy turned to her old friend and hugged him excitedly, “Pleased
doesn’t even begin to explain how I feel right now.”
Letting go of Giles, Buffy walked around the room opening cupboards and looking into the little bathroom. Everything was ready for the latest batch of new slayers to go through the training system that she and Faith had been working on. The first girls of the new intake would be arriving the following day as they were all coming from locations within the UK. Eventually there would be girls from all around the world plus their watchers.
“I must admit,” Giles stopped to examine a non-existent blemish on some pain work, “I had my reservations about the deal you struck with Kennedy’s father. But the money form the sale of the rest of the site has really made a difference and the old council’s lawyers are almost falling over themselves in their hurry to hand over the bank accounts to us.”
Before Christmas it’d looked as if the entire slayer organisation was about to go bankrupt. However, Buffy had made a deal with Anthony Scarpone (Kennedy’s wealthy father); he’d bought the old holiday camp site off Buffy for more than she’d paid for it. Then he’d leased some of it back to her while he’d turned the remainder into a storage depot for his growing European ‘Import/Export’ business. The cash and his help with lawyers had made all the difference and now the slayer organisation had a firm financial base, Buffy and Giles could start planning the long overdue slayer support organisation.
“Of course,” Giles pointed out, “you’re going to need help.” Buffy looked at Giles questioningly, he explained further “Faith and yourself can’t do all the training.”
“Don’t worry about that, Giles,” Buffy walked over to examine the new beds and bedding, “I’ve got people coming in for interviews later this week…everything’s going to be fine, I can just feel it.”
“I do hope so Buffy,” sighed Giles, “I really do.”
“Oh! Stop being all pessimistic-guy,” Buffy bounced happily towards the door, “what could possibly go wrong?”
Giles lifted an eyebrow at Buffy which had the effect of sobering her mood a little.
“Yeah, I know,” Buffy’s good humour was spoilt now…but not for long. “Come on Giles! Let’s go check out the swimming pool.”
Grabbing Giles by the hand she dragged him out of the room and towards the recently refurbished indoor, heated, swimming pool. Maybe she would take a dip; just to make sure it worked okay, she was determined that nothing was going to spoil her mood, not today.0=0=0=0Willow and Kennedy’s Apartment, Saltburn-by-the-Sea.
Working in the kitchen, Willow heard the front door open and close.
“Honey, I’m home!” Kennedy’s voice drifted in from the hallway.
Looking up at the kitchen clock Willow gasped, was it that time already? She’d been so engrossed in her work that she’d lost track. Turning as she took off her apron she was just in time to see Kennedy appear in the doorway. Walking into the kitchen Kennedy kissed her on the cheek.
“That smells good,” Kennedy looked from Willow to the saucepan and its contents that bubbled on the top of the stove, “what is it, soup?”
“No!” Willow cried not sure whether her girlfriend was teasing or simply being curious; Kennedy’s watcher had not ‘approved’ of magic and had passed on his prejudices to his potential. “It’s an Amnesia Potion,” Willow explained further, “y’know; like the guys in ‘Men in Black’ had those flashgun things to make people forget what they’d seen?”
Intrigued Kennedy nodded her head.
“Well this is the magic version of that,” Willow announced proudly, “one teaspoonful of this should make you forget the previous twenty-four hours.”
“Cool,” Kennedy agreed, immediately thinking how important it was to keep a diary…just in case of accidents.
“You want something to eat?” Willow started to clear away all the ingredients for her magic potion, “You want soup?” she asked, “I can quickly boil some up,” a new thought entered her mind and she frowned a little, “hey, you’re home early.”
“Yeah,” Kennedy grinned, “worried I might find you with the girl from the corner shop?”
“NO!” Willow replied a little flustered; the girl from the corner shop was very pretty and extremely gay.
“Only teasing,” Kennedy reassured her, “no I finished at the office early so I went ‘round to ‘Slayer Central’…we’ve got a job!”
Kennedy was now CEO for her father’s Import/Export business in Europe. The job title sounded more impressive than the work actually warranted but it helped explain Kennedy’s large salary.
“A job?” Willow opened the fridge and took out a big container of homemade soup; recently she’d been learning to cook more than cookies. Kennedy couldn’t cook to save her life and they couldn’t live on take-away curry forever. “Where? When? What?”
“Okay,” Kennedy leaned against the door frame to watch Willow work, “Where; London. When; like now. What? Would you believe a haunted tower block?”
“Umm, yeah!” Willow stirred the soup, “Can’t the London based slayers deal?”
“Buffy thought this was more your type of thing,” Kennedy got down soup bowls and plates, “I’ll be along to make sure nothing happens to you.”
“Like?” Willow replied suspiciously, “Buffy worried I’ll try to destroy the world again? You know I’m so over that?”
“No,” Kennedy took a loaf of bread from a cupboard and cut several slices before putting them on a plate; Willow served up the soup, “I think she was worried about you getting eaten while you’re doing your thing,” she sat down and picked up her spoon, “nice soup.”
“Hmm,” Willow hummed disbelievingly as she sat down to eat her lunch.
“Plus there’s the fringe benefits?” Kennedy started to pick apart a slice of bread before putting in her mouth.
“Fringe benefits?” Willow’s curiosity had been peeked.
“Yeah,” Kennedy grinned, “like a suite at the Ritz and shopping in the Westend.”
“We can’t afford that!” squeaked Willow almost dropping her soup spoon.
“You might not be able to,” continued Kennedy calmly, “but I sure as hell can.” She glanced over at Willow, “No arguments, we’re staying somewhere nice and I’m going to buy you some nice stuff, okay?”
“But,” Willow frowned, “it’s like very nice and all but…”
“But, what?” Kennedy put down her spoon and looked across the table at her partner, “I like buying you nice things and taking you nice places. You deserve it for putting up with me…I know I’m not the easiest person in the world to live with and…”
“Kennedy, honey,” Willow interrupted, “its not that, its,” Willow paused for a long minute, “it’s just…well it just feels like sometimes I feel like I’m being bought, y’know?”
“Bought?” Kennedy was plainly shocked.
“Yeah,” Willow nodded her head miserably, “like, I’m only staying with you coz you buy me cool stuff.”
“Oh,” Kennedy looked like a kicked puppy, “is that really what people think?”
“I don’t know,” Willow replied miserably, sometimes she wished she could just keep her big mouth shut, “but that’s how I feel…”
For just the briefest of moments, Willow considered putting a couple of drops of amnesia potion in Kennedy’s coffee so none of this would have happened. No! She mentally stomped down hard on the idea, magic was not the way to go, not now.
“So you don’t want to stay at the Ritz?” Kennedy asked quietly, “or go shopping in the Westend?”
“Hell, yes!” Willow decided it was time to lighten the mood, “I think my injured pride can suffer an all expenses paid trip to London.”
“Great!” Kennedy’s smile lit up the room, “Told you, I always get what I want!”
“Yeah, well,” Willow sobered a little, “but we still need to talk about this stuff if we’re gonna stay together, we need to sort stuff out, okay?”
“Yeah sure,” Kennedy replied brightly; of course they’d stay together and as soon as Willow got over her latest guilt trip she’d tell her about her plans for buying a house, this apartment was way too small.0=0=0=0
The following morning the two young women loaded up Kennedy’s Series Twelve BMW with everything that a witch and slayer could possibly need for a week away from home. After checking the load on the suspension, Kennedy drove them out of Saltburn-by-the-Sea and turned south onto the motorway heading for London. As they cruised along the A1 at a steady seventy miles an hour, Willow wondered how come the slayer driver gene had apparently passed Buffy by. Apart from Buffy, slayers were generally good drivers; true they drove to the limit but their quick reactions, sharp eyesight and hearing plus their raw physical strength made them better than even experienced police drivers.
“Hunk of German junk,” muttered Kennedy as she pulled out to pass a lorry, “it’s like driving a tank.”
“Have you ever driven a tank, sweetie?” Willow glanced up from the case files she’d been reading.
“As it happens, yes!” Admitted Kennedy watching Willow’s surprise in the rear view mirror: she smoothly slid the car back into the middle lane, “It was a birthday treat from my father when I was twelve. Just you wait and see what I’m going to get Daddy to buy me for my birthday this year.”
Rolling her eyes a little, Willow rearranged the papers on her lap; she thought herself lucky if her own parents actually remembered her birthday let alone sent her a gift. Willow had a thought and smiled to herself; maybe having a rich girlfriend who liked to shower her with nice things was a karmic reward for putting up with her own crappy parents or something.
“Okay,” Willow did her best to stifle the sigh that had built up inside her, “do you want to hear what we’re doing going down to the big city for?”
“Yeah,” Kennedy glanced at Willow and grinned, “why not. My watcher always told me that preparation was nine tenths of winning the battle…personally I thought hitting the big bad with something sharp had a lot to do with it.”
“Slayers,” Willow sighed, “all the same…you’re beginning to sound like Buffy and Faith.”
This earned Willow a dark look from Kennedy; there was no way she was beginning to sound like either of the senior slayers.
“You’ll pay for that tonight,” she warned.
“Promises, promises,” Willow replied quietly, she paused before continuing, “do you want to hear about this ghost thing or not?”
“Alright,” Willow started to read from the notes she’d made, “there’s this, like block of apartments in Battersea,” Willow gave Kennedy a puzzled look, “Battersea?”
“Central London,” supplied Kennedy, “just south of the river, there’s a famous park and dog’s home there.”
“Cute,” Willow smiled brightly, “puppies?”
“Off subject,” Kennedy warned, “haunted tower block, remember?”
“Yeah, right,” Willow glanced at her notes again, “completed in nineteen-sixty-seven it actually got a prize for its innovative design.”
“Sure,” Kennedy sounded sceptical, “what’s the betting the designer never had to live there.”
“No,” Willow agreed slowly, “okay for a few years there’s nothing odd about the place. But in nineteen-seventy-four you get the first confirmed suicide…someone jumped from the roof…twenty floors and splat!”
“Willow!” Kennedy laughed at Willow’s un-Willow-like comment, “I’m surprised at you. I must be rubbing off on you.”
“You can rub off on me all you want sweetie,” Willow commented.
“Slut!” gasped Kennedy.
“Brat,” replied Willow levelly.
“Am I going to have to stop at a motel before we get to London?” Kennedy wanted to know.
“Better not,” Willow pointed out sadly, “back to Battersea. Since seventy-four there’s been a steady rise in the number of suicides and murders committed by the block’s residents.”
“Is that in the block itself,” Kennedy wanted to know, “or in the general area?”
“No, that’s what makes it so odd,” Willow glanced out of the windscreen and noticed they were almost half way to London, “All the deaths have been in the block or from falling from it.” Willow shuffled through some more papers, “There’s also been an abnormally high rate of family break ups, sexual assaults and child abuse cases. All connected to people who live in the block.”
“You know it could be just a bad case of inner-city deprivation,” Kennedy pointed out, “have you seen one of those places? I wouldn’t like to have to live in one.”
“Honey,” Willow directed a weary sigh at Kennedy, “you don’t like living in our apartment.”
“Can I help it if I’m used to somewhere bigger?” Her parent’s house was so big you could go days without actually seeing anybody else who was living there
“Whatever,” Willow pursed her lips and shook her head, “back to work. To answer your question; crime is generally no worse than any other similar area. But it’s the type of crime that got the place noticed.”
“Yeah,” Kennedy nodded admitting Willow had a point, “so who noticed and called us in.”
“Ummm,” Willow rifled through her notes, “a Mrs Allen, Battersea Social Services. Apparently she knew Giles from way back and some of what he does. Seems she got suspicious when she rode the elevator…”
“Lift,” corrected Kennedy.
“Whatever,” Willow continued without missing a beat, “to the twentieth floor and nearly stepped out on to thin air instead of the lobby like she expected.”
“Yeah,” agreed Kennedy, “something like that would make me sit up and take notice.”
“You can ask her about it,” Willow started to clear away her papers and notes, “tomorrow morning when we meet her.”
“Not too early I hope,” Kennedy glanced at the fuel gauge and decided they needed to stop soon and refuel.
“Ten o’clock okay?”
“Cool,” Kennedy grinned, “plenty of time for what I’ve got planned.”0=0=0=0
“Huh!” Willow woke up with a start to find she was still in the car and they were still driving south along the motorway, “W-where are we?”
“Hi there sleepy head,” Kennedy sounded disgustingly perky and fresh, “We’ve just passed Watford Junction service centre.”
“Oh!” replied Willow not really any the wiser.
“We’ll be at the Ritz in about an hour or so,” Kennedy glanced over at Willow to see her wiping the sleep from her eyes, “it depends on the traffic.”
“Sorry,” Willow searched around until she’d found a bottle of water, she took a drink and started to feel more awake, “I must have dozed off.”
“Not a problem,” Kennedy concentrated on her driving once more.
“Will we be able to drive past Buckingham Palace and see the Queen?” Willow hated herself for sounding like a typical tourist.
“The Queen lives at Windsor Castle,” Kennedy explained with a grin, “Buckingham Palace is just her London office.”
“Wow!” Willow drank some more water, “Some office…Windsor Castle?”
“Yeah,” Kennedy nodded, “it’s just to the west of London, it’s where the Queen actually has her home.”
“Gee,” gasped Willow, “wonder what it’s like living in a castle?”
“Don’t think she gets many door to door salesmen,” Kennedy observed dryly, “Look, I promise that when we’ve finished what we’ve got to do I’ll take you ‘round all the sites. I used to come up to London a lot when I was at school.”
“That’s right,” agreed Willow, “you went to school over here…you don’t talk much about your schooldays or,” Willow smiled to herself, “you’re old girlfriends.”
“No I don’t,” Kennedy replied sharply, her knuckles going white as she grasped the steering wheel harder.
*Ooops!* Thought Willow, touched a raw nerve there. It was a fact though, while Kennedy seemed quite willing to talk about her home life and her family; she clammed up tight when it came to her life at boarding school in England, at least the personal bits. Willow knew that Kennedy’s watcher had been killed by the Bringers as he’d got her out of the country, but she’d said that they’d never been really close. Not Buffy and Giles close anyway; Kennedy always appeared to close down when her past girlfriends were mentioned. Frowning to herself, Willow decided to pretend that nothing had happened.
“Yeah,” Willow chuckled, “there’s stuff about Sunnydale High that I wouldn’t want becoming general knowledge. So, this guided tour of London, it won’t be just shops and such?”
“No,” Kennedy relaxed visibly, “don’t worry I’ll make sure you get your fix of museums and art galleries.”0=0=0=0