Disclaimer: I own nothing. BTVS belongs to Joss Whedon, et al. The Fionavar Tapestry trilogy belongs to Guy Gavriel Kay. All characters from either source belong solely to their creators, I am merely borrowing them. I make no money from this, please don't sue.
Author's Note 1: Caution! This looks like it will be a pretty long story, with some slow development upfront. The updates will be sporadic (read very far apart). If this makes you crazy, consider yourself warned. This was my first foray into fan fic, so please feel free to review. I have no beta, so all of my readers and reviewers are my betas. I was unable to edit it due to some kind of glitch, so I’m re-posting.
Author's Note 2: This is set between the 6th and 7th season of BTVS and after events of “The Summer Tree.” If you're not familiar with The Fionavar Tapestry trilogy, I recommend it as great reading. If you haven't had the chance to read the book and want a plot summary - there is a summary of "The Summer Tree" and "The Wandering Fire" in Wikipedia. There may be discrepancies to cannon for story flow, but I'm not sure what yet. There may also be spoilers throughout for any of the seasons. Also there maybe a few times that I borrow dialog or writing directly from either BTVS or The Fionavar Tapestry, these will be footnoted.“There are many worlds caught in the loops and whorls of time. Seldom do they intersect, and so for the most part they are unknown to each other. Only in Fionavar, the prime creation, which all the others imperfectly reflect, is the lore gathered and preserved that tells of how to bridge the worlds—and even there the years have not dealt kindly with ancient wisdom.”
Willow shifted in her seat as words washed past her. She looked out the window at the English countryside shrouded in a low-lying fog. She felt like the land, caught in a misty grayness of despair, grief and shame. She tried to focus as one of the coven members talked to her about control and responsibility, but the words flowed by and dissipated. Nothing touched her. Tara was dead. Tara is dead. There is nothing else. I should be dead. Why did they let me live?
The drone of conversation stopped. Silence. “Willow, Willow! Did you not hear anything I said?” Irritation and concern added a touch of sharpness to the speaker’s voice. Willow started and flushed, caught in the spiral of her sorrow and self-loathing. “Snap out of it, gel,” the woman's voice was softer. “I know this is hard. You had a right muck-up, but you have to work on balance and control!”
“Why? It doesn't matter,” Willow retorted, “I can't bring her back. I can't undo what I did. I'm an out-of-control addict. I don't deserve...” her voice trailed off as she began to shake and tears threatened to break free.
Ylona sighed as she watched the redhead struggle to regain her composure, then frowned as dark strands of hair began to appear amid the copper. Willow's eyes darkened as well. Oh, I think not, little sister.
Ylona sent her thoughts,*Elena. Diana. She's losing it again. Lend me strength, sisters.*
She threw the barrier up and called to Willow, “Lock it down. You can do this. Willow! Let your emotions flow through you. Lock it down, now!” She could feel the magical energies pulse against the barrier, the air itself coalesced around the hysterical young woman. The barrier held. She felt the pressure increase and sent a silent plea to the Goddess. Then with an audible pop, the magical assault ended. Willow collapsed in tears, red hair and hazel eyes restored. Ylona knelt and gathered the girl into her arms. She whispered soft reassurances and rocked the grieving witch. The loss of control was shorter and the girl had stopped herself this time. The world remained intact. It was an improvement. One step at a time.
* * * * * * *
Kimberly stood on Glastonbury Tor bathed in the fiery glow of the Baelrath. She was at the appointed place and she knew the name of summoning. Sorrows built upon sorrow.
The white-haired seer could feel the waning power of the wild Warstone fading. They must be sent now. She called for the Champions and whispered to wild magic. The Baelrath's fire burned through Kimberly as it pulled four souls from the fabric of time and space. The Weaver's shuttle moves across the Loom.
Four Champions of Light called to Fionavar to help stand against the darkness. Kim smiled grimly as she thought of Kevin, Paul, Jennifer and Dave back in Fionavar. They will stand until I can bring the Warrior.
She prepared herself for the summons.
* * * * * * *
“Buffy?” Willow looked at the Slayer in bewilderment. “Where are we?”
1 The Summer Tree, page 27