Speaker-to-Customers (speakr2customrs) wrote,

Crossover Fic: Into the Fire Ch. 1 (BtVS/Forgotten Realms)

This is a sequel to LES MORTS DANSANT. It’s a Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Forgotten Realms crossover. Don’t shout at me for starting a new story when I’ve so many others on the go; I need another BtVS crossover at Twisting The Hellmouth so that I can start posting ‘The Dark Companion’ there while still staying within the ‘at least 50% BtVS Crossovers’ rule. One day I’ll work out a way of posting TDC on LiveJournal despite its colossal chapter lengths…

Summary: Liriel Baenre follows Laelryne's example and flees from Faerûn, but she doesn't go to Middle Earth. Instead she comes to Earth, to a place called ‘Sunnydale’, arriving in Season 7 during ‘Bring on the Night’. How will the presence of a Drow wizard and her Elf friends affect things on the Hellmouth – and how will the First Evil affect someone who has all too many dead friends in her past? 5,200 words, rating 15.

Into The Fire

Chapter One: Out of the frying pan…

“They’re all dead,” Liriel said. She shook her head. “All of them. I cannot believe it.”

“We’ll be dead soon, too, if we don’t follow them,” Sharlarra said. The beautiful red-headed Star Elf stared into the distance to where a blue curtain of flickering flames could be seen. “I’d estimate we’ve less than an hour before it hits.”

“Anything that could kill that crew would kill us,” Thorn advised. “Laelryne was lethal with a sword, better than anyone except her teacher Iljrene, and she’d have killed me in two seconds. Cierre was at least as good as me, I would say, and was a phenomenal archer. And I wouldn’t have wanted to take on Kyoroth or Kebella, for that matter, unless I really, really, had to. Tebolvir wasn’t in your class as a wizard, Liriel, but he was certainly competent. You said the Ritual of Shaundakul indicated that the world to which they went was safe. How could you have been so wrong?”

“I don’t know,” Liriel said. “Oh, gods and goddesses, what have I done? Laelryne had become my friend and I sent her to her death. And Srulauthe was seven months pregnant.” The diminutive Drow wizard wiped the back of her right hand across her eyes. “More people dead because of me. Elkantar, Zz’Pzora, Hrolf, Ysolde… and Fyodor… and now Laelryne and all her people.”

“You should not blame yourself,” Sharlarra said. “It was not your fault that evil forces pursued you and slew others in the course of that pursuit.”

“It was my fault that I made an enemy of Shakti Hunzrin,” Liriel said. “The deadliest of all my foes – and none of it was necessary, for had I not picked on her at school she would have had no grudge against me. And at the end I found that she was someone I could respect – could have liked, even, had she not slain several of my friends by that time. No, Sharlarra, I did bring death to those for whom I cared. And perhaps I have brought death to you, too; I was sure that we would be able to flee to Arda, and find safety there, but it seems that the road leads only to our doom.”

“Not necessarily,” Sharlarra said. “The Ritual revealed only that there was no great, all-encompassing, danger and that the foe from whom the ancestors of the Elves had fled no longer posed a threat. They may have fallen foul of some hazard of normal existence; a band of brigands, or a wandering dragon, or some such random peril.”

“Any band of brigands that could slay forty-eight warriors of that standard would wipe us out in thirty seconds flat,” said Thorn. “I will not go to that place ‘Arda’. I would rather take my chances with the azure fires of the Spellplague.”

“They kill all they touch,” Sharlarra said, “and they are coming this way. I’m willing to chance it.”

“I am not,” Thorn stated. “Find another destination, Liriel, and quickly.”

“Nowhere shows up as being completely safe,” Liriel warned. “In fact the Ritual shows that Arda is the safest destination of all. I would guess that whatever slew Laelryne’s people is no longer there. Perhaps it was indeed a dragon and they injured it to the point of death before the last of them fell.”

“And perhaps not,” said Thorn. “Another destination, I said, and I meant it.”

“Several are revealed as incompatible with life,” Liriel said, “and others show up as filled with dire perils. The least perilous is the world from which the Imaskari brought the Mulan, long ago, as slaves. Earth, it is called. It is a close match for Toril, or so the Ritual shows, in gravity, temperature, and the composition of the air. Hardly surprising, of course, as the Mulan had no problems adapting to this world. In fact some think Earth was the original home-world of all humans, as Arda was of the Elves, and possibly many of Faerûn’s mammals originated there too.”

“So probably no Elves,” Sharlarra said, “therefore no problems because of you being a Drow. It would mean any potential boyfriends would grow old and die, while we stayed young, but that’s something we could live with.”

“Only you would think of boyfriends before we even get there,” Thorn said.

“The problem is that the Ritual indicated that there is a peril there, a force of Evil, and it is growing in power,” Liriel said. “The indications are that it could get very bad.”

“Worse than here?” Sharlarra said. “Our gods have gone crazy and are killing each other off, the Weave has collapsed, and the world is coming apart. Sildëyuir is falling to the Nilshai and I can’t go back there. We’re fucked whichever way you look at it. I’d vote for going to Arda but if Thorn’s adamantly opposed to it then I’d say we should go to Earth.”

“I agree,” Thorn said. “And we had better go quickly. I think Sharlarra has underestimated the speed of the azure fire’s advance. I don’t think we have even half an hour before it reaches here.”

“It could well destroy the portal,” Liriel said. “We may not be able to return even if we find a functional portal on the other side.”

“Would you want to return to… this?” Thorn asked, waving her hand in a gesture toward the advancing wall of blue flames. “There is no point in discussing it further. Let us depart while we still can.”

“Very well,” Liriel said. “Have your weapons ready for we know not what we may face upon arrival.” She recited the words of the spell and the arch of the Voice of the Lost portal filled with a shimmering blue haze. “Farewell, Faerûn. Onward to Earth – and who names a planet after soil anyway?” She led the way through the portal and the three girls passed through the blue curtain and disappeared.

- - - - -

They emerged in an underground chamber. The floor was of earth, barely tamped down, and in the spot where they stood the soil was looser than elsewhere and a circular outline could be made out. “Something has been buried here,” Liriel said. “I suspect it to be a portal or something similar. It would be advisable to examine it in case we need to seek an exit from this world in the future.”

The three Elf girls left the circle and Liriel used a cleaning cantrip to remove the earth from over the buried object. It proved to be a metal disc, several feet across, engraved with a large five-pointed star and a series of symbols.

“I know not what the symbols mean,” Liriel said, “but the star in the centre implies that this is a summoning circle of some sort, and most probably for Outsiders of the Evil kind. I like this not.” She moved away from the circle with some haste.

“I smell blood,” said Thorn. “Old blood and death. There has been a sacrifice here.” She pointed upward and the others saw that a ring-shaped frame hung from the ceiling. “Someone was tied there and their blood dripped down onto the circle.”

“This chamber seems very crude to be a temple to an Evil god,” Sharlarra said, “but it has that feel to it. I think we should leave.”

“I see stairs,” said Liriel, “leading upward. And I sense that the Evil is strongest below us. Up would be good.”

“I’ll lead,” Thorn said. “My senses are the keenest. Perhaps it might be best if I were to take wolf form.”

“Not yet,” Liriel said. “We don’t know how the people of this world would react to a wolf. Lythari are rare and might be unknown here; they could take you for a wild wolf, or a werewolf, and attack you on sight. We need to know more about conditions here before we risk it.”

“Very well,” Thorn said. She remained in Elf form but led the way up the stairs with her sword poised for instant action.

At the top of the stairs they came out into a building that was very different from the basement. The floor was paved in some unknown glossy material, as smooth and even as the finest flooring marble, and was absolutely flat. The walls, too, were extremely precise in their finish and their alignment. They were painted in bright and cheerful colours; some were decorated with posters bearing unfamiliar pictures and legends in an unreadable script. And, surprisingly, there were glazed windows set into the walls between the corridor and the interior rooms as well as in the exterior walls.

“Glass must be cheap indeed, in this world, that they can afford to waste it like that,” Sharlarra commented.

“It lets the daylight into the rooms from every direction,” Liriel said. “That is efficient. I notice that there are many desks in the rooms and I deduce that much writing is done here. Either it is a school or a place where copyists work.”

“It is empty now,” Thorn said, “yet it does not look as if it has been abandoned. There is almost no dust; in fact it is cleaner than the house of a noble.”

“The sun is very low in the sky,” Sharlarra said, looking out through an exterior window. “Either it is early in the morning, and work has not yet begun, or it is late in the evening and work has finished for the day.”

“Let us leave quickly, then,” Liriel said, “in case it is the morn and people begin to arrive and question our presence.”

They moved on, searching for the way out, but examining the items that they passed as they went.

“These pictures are extremely detailed,” Liriel commented, “and I see no brush strokes. They are printed in some fashion that gives extraordinary precision. And the lettering is… perfect. Each character matches those of the same type exactly and the sides of the strokes are perfectly parallel. Moveable type, no doubt, but cast more cleanly than I would have thought possible.”

“Some of the characters resemble the numbers in Thorass script,” Sharlarra observed, “but the others, which I presume are letters, are entirely unfamiliar. Is it worth you casting Read Languages?”

“I might as well,” said Liriel. “Most of these signs will be of little interest to us, I would think, but there may be something that will direct us to the exit.” She cast the spell and read the title of a sign on the nearest door.

“Core Counselling Center,” she read. She glanced in through the window. “I wonder what those strange objects are?” She opened the door and entered the room with the other two following behind her. An odd wall that only rose to head height divided that room off from another. A map pinned to the dividing wall caught Liriel’s eye. “The arrangement of continents seems similar to that of our world,” she said, “although the shapes differ. Which one are we on, I wonder?”

“As we know nothing about any of them, it makes little difference,” Sharlarra said. She peered at a red-orange fish that swam in a glass bowl atop a tall cabinet. “I have seen fish like that before,” she said, “imported from Shou Lung. Perhaps we are in this world’s equivalent of Kara-Tur.”

“Possibly,” said Liriel. She poked at various strange objects that lay on the surface of a desk. “This, I think, is a lantern,” she said, “although I see no way to light it. And yet it seems overly complex to be lit by magic. This seems to be some sort of switch…” She fiddled with it until it clicked and suddenly a brilliant light shone forth from the lantern. “Vith, that is bright!” she exclaimed. “No flames, and I sense no magic – how does it work?”

“If you don’t know then it’s pointless asking us,” Sharlarra said. “You’re the expert. I wonder if there’s anything valuable in this cabinet? And what is this strange thing? It resembles a mirror, or a painting, but it is plain black with a silver rim. Like a mirror in reverse.”

“I see something that might be a switch, but I would recommend that you do not touch it,” Liriel advised, reversing the position of the switch on the lantern, and extinguishing the light, as she spoke. “I would guess it to be a scrying device and you could inadvertently show yourself to the owner. And please do not take anything. We need to make friends here, not antagonise the natives by stealing from them.” She found a long, low, placard that stood on the desk and read the legend on it. “I would deduce this to be the name of the owner of this desk and the devices thereon,” she said. “Buffy Summers.”

- - - - -

“The sun has dropped below the horizon,” Thorn observed, as they went down the broad flight of stone steps that descended from the exit door of the building to a path that led to a roadway. “And – see! – lights appear at the top of those tall poles. It must be a magic that activates street lighting as darkness is about to fall.”

“Ingenious and efficient,” said Liriel. “This world is not primitive, that is for certain, and indeed it may have developed well beyond Faerûn. I hope that our skills will be sufficiently valued here for us to be able to make a living.”

“The street is wide enough for several carriages to pass at once,” Sharlarra said, “and yet I neither see nor hear anyone at all.”

“The school building was locked for the night,” Liriel said, “and it would seem that there is no reason for anyone to come this way when the school is closed. Let us follow the road. No doubt we will come upon some passer-by eventually. Then, of course, we will have to explain by gesture that I need to touch her so that I may cast Comprehend Languages and Tongues. That could prove awkward, and possibly even provoke conflict, if the people of this place are unfamiliar with the spell. But it will have to be done.”

“If there are any people here at all,” said Sharlarra.

“I can smell humans,” said Thorn, “in fair numbers, although none close at hand. And I can also detect the aroma of burnt oil; a very pure oil, distilled to give a clear flame with little smoke, I would say.”

“Does it come from those lanterns?” Liriel asked.

Thorn shook her head. “I do not think so,” she said. “It is all around, with no discernible source, as indeed is the scent of the humans. And now I hear a strange noise. A… growling.”

“I hear it too,” Sharlarra said. “It comes closer.”

“Prepare for battle,” Liriel said. She took out her bolas and readied it for a throw. Thorn unslung her bow from her shoulder, bent it, and slipped the bowstring into place. Sharlarra cocked her crossbow.

The growling grew louder and a strange chariot came into view. It was low and sleek, had no beasts pulling it or any other visible means of propulsion, and the compartment in which the driver rode had glazed windows on all sides. Forward-facing lights shone from the front of the vehicle. It travelled as fast as a galloping war-horse, emitting the growling noise, and a rumble from its small black-rimmed wheels could also be heard. It passed the three girls, not slowing down, and continued onward.

Thorn sniffed. “The burning oil scent is stronger,” she said. “That… contraption… was the source, or more likely one of many sources.”

“Which implies that it is propelled by artifice rather than by magic,” said Liriel. “This world seems to be full of cunning devices. The sort of thing worshippers of Gond would contrive.”

“I hope it is not a world full of gnomes,” Thorn said. “They mean well, mostly, but they are annoying past all bearing.”

“The occupant of that vehicle was no gnome,” said Sharlarra. “Human, I would say.”

“We need to find other inhabitants of this place before we can learn more,” said Liriel. “Which way should we follow this road?”

“You are the leader,” said Thorn. “One way seems as good as the other.”

“Then let us follow the path taken by that… chariot,” Liriel said. They did so, with Thorn some five paces ahead of the other two, keeping a watchful eye on everything around them. They walked past what was, unmistakably, a cemetery and onward to where the road was bordered on one side by houses. On the other side were larger buildings, with wide doors sealed by metal shutters,

“Should we knock at the door of a dwelling?” Sharlarra suggested.

“It would be difficult to explain our peaceful intent when we do not speak the language,” Liriel said, “and we might find the door slammed in our faces. No, let us merely walk on and hope to encounter someone passing by. We can always try a door later. Best of all would be if we happened upon an inn.”

After three encounters with natives on foot, all of whom had turned and fled upon the instant of seeing the three Elves, Liriel was beginning to consider changing her policy. And then Thorn halted and raised her bow.

“Something approaches,” Thorn announced, “something that moves fast and in an evasive pattern. I do not think it is human or Elven. And I hear running footsteps, too, coming this way. Those are made by a human, and no full-grown man. A youth, or a maid, I would say.”

“Would you say the two beings are on converging courses?” Liriel asked.

Thorn’s eyebrows rose slightly. “I had not thought of that. Yes, that may well be the case.”

“Then let us head in the direction of the maiden or youth,” Liriel said. “If the other is a threat to her, or him, then we might win her trust by fending it off. If not then we are no worse off than we are now and perhaps, if the runner will not stand and speak with us, then we might resort to knocking on doors.”

It was half an hour after sunset, by this time, and the sky was dark. The tall lantern poles shed a surprising amount of light, however, and the street was more brightly illuminated than any thoroughfare of Waterdeep or Neverwinter. Liriel didn’t even need her Drow night-vision to spot the running figure heading toward them.

It was a human girl, not a child but not a grown woman either, clad in a tight blue tunic and dark breeches. Her long red-brown hair trailed behind her in the wind of her motion. When she saw the three Elf girls she came to a halt, began to edge away to the side, and called out unintelligibly.

“We mean you no harm,” Liriel called out in response, speaking in Drow and then repeating her statement in Common, in two different Tel-quessiri dialects, and in Illuskan. The girl gave no sign of understanding but, perhaps responding to the tone of voice rather than the words, stood still and made no move to evade as the Elves approached.

And then a figure leapt from the top of a nearby building, landing lightly from a height that would have been hazardous even for Thorn, and sprang upon the girl.

Thorn had an arrow in the air even before the girl screamed. There was no need to make a conscious decision, no consideration of rights and wrongs; the creature moved like something evil, like a predator, and she loosed with absolute certainty.

And missed. The creature moved too fast and the arrow passed by harmlessly. So, too, did the bolt that sped from Sharlarra’s crossbow.

But Liriel’s Magic Missile spell did not miss. As the monster, whatever it was, seized the girl and lifted her into the air it was struck by a volley of glowing missiles. It rocked under the impacts, jerked in spasms, and released its victim. The girl fell to her hands and knees and at once, whimpering, scuttled away in the direction of the Elves.

“What the fuck is that thing?” Sharlarra queried, reloading as she spoke. The monster was man-size, and shaped like a human, but its face was distorted and its head was hairless. It bore no weapons but was clad in crude hide armour.

“A Tanarukk, perhaps?” Liriel ventured. “Something akin to orcs, anyway. If it is a Tanarukk fire spells would be pointless.”

Thorn loosed another arrow. The creature snatched it from the air and cast it aside. “Fuck!” Thorn exclaimed. “That thing is fast.” She set aside the bow, drew her sword, and advanced.

The monster set off after the girl. Liriel cast a Wall of Fire, despite half expecting it to be useless, interposing a fiery barrier between the creature and its prey. It did indeed act as a deterrent, forcing the predator to go around the obstacle, and enabling Thorn to reach the girl and help her to her feet.

The creature came around the edge of the Wall of Fire, batted aside a crossbow bolt loosed by Sharlarra, and made for Thorn and the girl. Thorn pushed the girl behind her and moved into a protective position. She raised her sword, feinted high, and then avoided her opponent’s grasping hand and thrust her blade home into its stomach. It merely snarled, revealing pointed teeth and long canine fangs, and struck back. Thorn withdrew her sword, evaded a backhand blow, and tried to strike again. The creature chopped across Thorn’s sword-arm with the edge of its left hand, causing her to drop the sword, and seized her shoulder with its right hand. It pulled her toward it, opened its mouth wide, and reached for her head with its free hand.

“It’s a fucking vampire!” Sharlarra exclaimed. She drew her short-sword and charged. The native girl dived for Thorn’s fallen sword, grasped it in two hands, and faced the vampire.

Thorn transformed. Suddenly the ugly vampire no longer had a secure grip on the shoulder of an Elf girl but had an awkward and insecure hold on a large black wolf. Thorn twisted free, dropped to the ground, and sprang away. The Earth girl swung Thorn’s sword, with more enthusiasm than skill, and connected with the vampire’s shoulder. The blade sliced through the hide armour and carved a gash in the flesh below, causing the vampire to hiss and recoil, but it wasn’t seriously hurt and returned to the attack with undiminished fury. Sharlarra arrived and aimed a blow at the vampire with her sword; it leapt into the air, kicked her in the face, and sent her flying ten feet through the air to crash to the ground. Thorn dashed in, nipped at the vampire’s heels as it landed from its leap, and then sprang away again.

Meanwhile Liriel was reviewing her spell selection. She didn’t have anything specifically chosen with vampires in mind and so she cast Mordenkainen’s Sword, so that she could fight it at a distance, followed by Cat’s Grace to maximise her chances of evading when the vampire targeted her. When she saw Sharlarra felled she considered throwing her bolas but decided that there was too big a risk of entangling Thorn or the Earth girl. Instead she advanced slowly with the Mordenkainen’s Sword ahead of her ready to attack.

Then someone new entered the fray. Around the Wall of Fire came a fair-haired human woman, not much taller even than Liriel and slim of build, who hurled herself at the vampire. She bore no weapon but instead struck out with bare hands and booted feet, smiting the creature hard enough to knock it back several paces. She followed up but the vampire retaliated, lashing out blindingly fast, connecting with the woman’s jaw and sending her flying through the air. This woman, though, hit the ground in a rolling break-fall and was back on her feet upon the instant.

“Nice… move,” Sharlarra muttered. She rose to her feet, wiped blood from her nose, and raised her sword once more.

The vampire and the new arrival faced off and exchanged a flurry of blows and kicks. The original Earth girl came up behind the vampire and aimed a sword blow at its head. The vampire whirled around and parried the strike, hitting the girl’s arm and spinning her around, but the smaller Earth woman kicked it in the back of the knee as it faced away from her and sent it stumbling. Sharlarra rushed in, slashed once with her sword, and retreated immediately. Thorn pounced from the other side, ripped at the vampire’s face, and similarly withdrew at once. Then Liriel’s Mordenkainen’s Sword arrived and began stabbing and hacking. The vampire defended itself by aiming blows at where an invisible opponent would have been if the sword had been held by human hands. All it achieved was to throw itself off-balance.

The small human woman seized her opportunity. She seized the vampire in a cunning hold, lifted it into the air, and hurled it bodily in the direction of the Wall of Fire. It flailed its arms and legs wildly as it flew but could do nothing to influence its course. The vampire came down squarely in the middle of the fiery barrier and burst into flames. At once it scrambled out but it was already on fire. The air filled with a horrible smell of burning leather, as the vampire made one last attempt to reach the Earth girl who had been its original target, and then the flames flared up brightly and the vampire disintegrated into ash.

The woman spoke but her words meant nothing to the Elves. The girl, younger but several inches taller than the woman, ran to her and seized her in a hug. As she still held Thorn’s sword this was something of a hazardous manoeuvre. Gently but firmly the smaller woman removed the sword from the girl’s hand, laid it down on the ground with the care and respect due to a fine weapon, and then returned the hug. They spoke to each other and Liriel recognised one of the words the younger girl uttered. “Buffy.”

“Buffy Summers?” Liriel queried. She had wondered what a ‘Core Center Counsellor’ did; it would seem that the answer was ‘fights vampires’.

The reply sounded like an affirmative followed by a question. Liriel thought it likely that it had been “Yes, that’s me, and who are you?” and so replied accordingly.

“Liriel Baenre,” she said, pointing to herself. “Sharlarra,” she added, pointing to the Star Elf, and “Thorn,” with a gesture toward the wolf. The Earth woman rolled her eyes and said something incomprehensible. “I do not yet speak your language,” Liriel said, in Common, “but I can rectify that if I can touch you. Not that you can understand, of course, but perhaps my gestures will speak for themselves.”

Liriel extended her hand. Buffy Summers disentangled herself from the girl’s hug, took the proffered hand, and shook it. Liriel took the opportunity to cast Comprehend Languages and Tongues on herself.

Buffy was speaking again. As the spells took effect her words acquired meaning.

“…by pointing and saying is going to take a real long time, seeing as how Giles tells me there are six hundred and sixteen thousand words in the English language,” Buffy said, “although nobody says ‘falchion’ or ‘guisarme’ much these days and we can probably get by without them.”

“You would be surprised how often I have had call to name those weapons,” Liriel said, causing Buffy’s eyebrows to shoot up. “Well met, Buffy Summers. I am Liriel Baenre, as I said, and my companions are Sharlarra and Thorn.”

“What, were you faking the whole point and say thing?” Buffy asked, sounding slightly displeased.

“No, I have just cast a spell which enables us to understand each other,” Liriel replied. “Until we shook hands I could only guess at your meaning but now we can talk.”

“Good,” Buffy said, “’cause the other way was going to be pretty damn hard work. Thanks for helping out Annabel.”

“She is a brave girl,” Liriel said, “and contributed to our victory.”

“Ah, I’m not brave,” Annabel said. “I was terribly scared and I ran off. And I blundered straight into that Ubervamp thing, which would probably have killed me if it hadn’t been for you and your friends. Thank you so much for saving my life.” Her accent was distinctly different from that of Buffy, Liriel noticed, although she had no idea what, if anything, the difference meant.

Thorn transformed back into Elf form and came over to retrieve her sword.

“Hey, neat trick,” Buffy said. “What is she, a werewolf with total control? Uh, and how come you all have pointy ears?”

“We are Elves,” Liriel said. “Thorn is a Lythari, an Elven werewolf, and, as you say, she does indeed have total control over her transformations.”

“Elves? What, you came here from Santa’s workshop?” Buffy’s eyebrows climbed high. “If word gets out that Elves are babes like you three then guys will keep on being good way after they stop being little kids. And plane tickets to Lapland will start selling like hot cakes.”

“I have no idea what you are talking about,” Liriel said. “I assume that you are referring to things that are unique to your world. And Thorn and Sharlarra cannot yet speak your tongue. I will need you to touch them, each in turn, so that I can cast the spells that will enable them to communicate with you.”

“I’m good with that,” Buffy said, and complied.

A repeat round of introductions, with Thorn and Sharlarra being able to participate this time, followed. Annabel thanked both of them for rescuing her.

“You made good use of my sword, and played your own part,” Thorn said, “although I suggest that you take lessons before you attempt to wield a sword again.”

“Don’t thank us, just throw money,” said Sharlarra. “What do you use for currency in this world, anyway? Is gold acceptable?”

“Gold? You have gold?” Buffy smiled. “Gold will get you a long way round here. We’re all for the gold. Not that I have any myself.” She closed one eye and tilted her head. “Hey, what was that you said about ‘this world’? So you’re from some place that isn’t Earth, then?”

“We are from Faerûn, on a world called Toril,” Liriel said. “Our world is being ravaged by a disaster and we fled through a portal.”

“I can get that,” Buffy said, “but why choose here? What made you pick Hellmouth Central?”

“Hellmouth Central?” Sharlarra echoed. “That does not sound good. I told you we should have gone to Arda.”

“Hellmouth Central? I like that name not,” Liriel said. “Is this a place of danger?”

“You might say that,” Buffy said. “In fact we have kind of an… apocalypse problem.”

There was only one thing Liriel could say in response to that. “Oh, vith!”

Continued in Chapter 2: Of Pizza and Vampires

Disclaimer: The world of Faerûn is property of Wizards of the Coast Inc., and Hasbro. Liriel Baenre, Sharlarra Vendreth, and Thorn were created by Elaine Cunningham in her trilogy ‘Starlight & Shadows’. BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER (c) 2002 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All Rights Reserved. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer trademark is used without express permission from Fox.

Tags: fic, into the fire, les morts dansant
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