Author: Koohii Cafe
Fandom: BtVS/Evil Dead Trilogy
Disclaimer: Since I am a poor chickadee with no wealth to speak of, I think it's safe to say that neither BtVS nor Evil Dead are mine. ^^;
Summary: How important could three little words possibly be? Buffy Summers and Ash Williams are about to find out exactly how much three tiny words can do, and why it’s always important to say them correctly.
Author's notes: Comics? What comics? >.> This is set post season 7 for Buffy, and just as Ash tries to go home at the end of AOD.
My name is Ash, Ash Williams. Yeah, yeah, you’ve never heard of me, I know, so what do you care. I’m the ‘Promised One,’ and you should care because I’ve been fighting the undead for a couple hundred years. Fighting them, and winning, and saving this god forsaken dustball of a planet from sheer unholy hell. So what if, for me, it’s only been a couple weeks? I’ve fought these damn things all the way from 1981, to 1300, and back to 2004. Which is where I’m trapped now, all because of a book called the Necronomicon Ex-Mortis.
Stop me if you’ve heard this story before; boy and his friends go to a cabin in Tennessee for a little getaway, boy’s friend plays a taped reading of the worst book ever written, the recording brings a buncha demons back to life. Through the course of a single night, this boy loses everything; his friends, his sister, his girlfriend- all possessed by the demons. Add insult to injury- or should that be the other way around?- he even loses his right hand to the damn demons. Then, take it one step further- when the demons finally get sealed away, the boy gets dragged along, back to the past, where they expect him to be some kinda savior who’ll defeat the demons, the Deadites. He has to go after that damned book to get home, and then he gets attached- there’s a girl, and she makes him want to do the brave thing. The stupid thing, if you ask me. She gets taken, he mans up and kicks Deadite ass, saves the girl, and heads home.
Except, this isn’t home. I was supposed to come back to the time I left, 1981. Hell, I would have even taken a little earlier. Maybe I could’a saved myself the trouble of ever going to Tennessee. Yeah, that would’a been nice. Convinced everyone that the cabin was bad news, stayed in Michigan, and had my life before me again. It didn’t work that way, though. Instead, I ended up twenty-three years too late. I’m not even in America, if you can believe it. Guess that whole portal thing that ripped me back to Kandar was a one way deal.
So where am I? Some place in London, England called the Watcher’s Council. I kind of knocked over this girl when the book dropped me off here, pretty little blonde thing. Ended up having to save her and her witch friend from the Deadites the book brought back along with me- damn thing never could leave well enough alone. It just had to strand me in the wrong time with its damn minions waitin’ for me. Anyway, the witch did some magic trick that got us out of there and back to safety. Of course, she did it in the middle of the fight, and let me tell ya, when you’re swinging around a chainsaw and then suddenly your enemy’s gone and you’re in a different place completely, it’s hard to stop.
So sue me. I hit her again. It’s not like I meant to or anything, she was just there, and I couldn’t get out of the way. In my defense, she hit me too. Had a huge ax- wait, sorry, scythe- in her hands too. I’m lucky she didn’t hit anything vital. On me, that is. She uh. Kinda fell and smacked her head on the ground. And that’s when the weird crap starts.
Yup. You heard right. That’s when the weird starts. Not before, not in the cabin, not in the middle ages. When the tiny blonde chick who probably doesn’t weigh one hundred pounds soaking wet enters the story.
So, I said I was in England, right? Well, I am. Except, this girl and her friend are as American as I am. And they’ve got this huge estate where the witch took us to. Marble floors, marble pillars, fancy gold paint, the works. And there’s people wandering around everywhere, mostly girls. Young girls. As in, most of ‘em looked like teenagers, junior high, high school age, and they’re from all over the world. Shoulda’ seen the way they freaked when we showed up and the blonde got knocked out. You’d think she was some kinda god or something. They almost mobbed me before the redhead- the witch- told them it wasn’t my fault. Then, a couple more people showed up. Hot brunette dame all in leather, tall guy with an eye-patch, some geeky tag-a-long kid, a bookish looking girl, and some stuffy older man done up in tweed. Except for the older guy, they were all American too, and the girls in the place acted like they were definitely in charge.
A whole buncha things happened at once. The redhead told them what happened in the graveyard I got dropped in, and the guy with the eye-patch went out to take care of the Deadites. Said he was taking some kind of team, so I made sure he knew how to destroy the damn things. Maybe I should’a gone with him, but I couldn’t. I felt responsible for the blonde. After all, I was the one who knocked her out. I wanted to make sure she got taken care of. So he went off to clean up my mess with the book, and I followed the conga line up to what turned out to be the girl’s bedroom, her leather wearing friend carrying her. I’d’a carried her myself if it hadn’t started while I was talking to Patches. Common decency, you know.
In her bedroom, they did some kind of magic mojo on her to find out what was wrong. Yeah, I know, it sounds crazy, using ‘magic,’ instead of taking her to the hospital. I would’ve expected that back in Kandar, not here. Anyway, they said it was a concussion, and sent geek-boy off to make some mamby-pamby herbal cure. And that’s when I put my foot in it.
See, I have this bad habit of actually caring. You’d think I’d learned, after watching so many people die since that damn recording started it all, but what can I say. I’m a slow learner sometimes. I told them where they could stick their ‘herbal remedy’ and that they needed to take the girl to the hospital. It just went downhill from there. She woke up, almost puked all over my boots, and we got in this big long fight about everything. I told ‘em the truth about what happened, and they wouldn’t believe me. Then I found out the kicker.
Two thousand and freakin’ four. That’s the year right now. Yeah, yeah, I already said that already, get over it. I’m still processing the fact that I’m stuck twenty-three years in the future. Leave me alone. You’d be pretty damn shell shocked too, if you were sittin’ in my shoes right now. Think you coulda handled it any better? Huh? Think you’d be all calm and tellin’ the whole story without repeating a few things here and there?
That’s what I thought.
Anyway. This is about the part of the story where I am now. Everyone got kicked out of the blonde’s- Buffy’s her name, if you were wondering- room by the redhead, Willow, so they could drug her back to sleep. I’m tellin’ ya, it’s crazy here. The older British guy, goes by the name of Giles, lead me down here to ‘visitors’ quarters. I haven’t decided if that’s a nice way of calling them prison rooms, or not. Just not sure. If they are, it’s a nice prison at least, very upscale. And-
Oh hey, he’s talking.
“I’m afraid I’m going to need some details from you, Mr…” He trailed off, unsure. Oh yeah, I hadn’t given them my last name yet, had I. I frowned, but went ahead and gave him his answer.
“Ash Williams. Just call me Ash.”
“Mr. Williams.” Told ya he was stuffy. “If we are to discern whether or not it is possible to return you to your time, I need to know as much as you can tell me about the spell that brought you here.”
“Right.” And that- could be a problem. This was the part that always got me. My gaze darted away from my ‘host’ for a moment as I scratched the back of my neck with my good hand, and forced a laugh. “Spell. Right. Gotcha. I uh- it wasn’t so much a spell as it was the old Wiseman brewing up a potion from the book. All I had to do was drink a couple drops, say a couple words, and bam. I’d be back home. That’s the way it was supposed to work, at least. Obviously,” and I gestured with my metal hand to the room, to him, to all of it, “something went kablooey.”
“A potion, you say. And it was written of within the Necronomicon?” He was doing that glasses thing again- yankin’ them off and cleaning them. He’d done it before, too, when he first asked me about the book. Honestly, maybe I should’ve been more wary about this guy, but- it was hard. I’d seen the look on his face when he talked about Annie Knowby. Even if I hadn’t known the girl long, she’d struck me as a good kind of girl. I mean, she was the whole reason I’d lived through all of this. She died by my hand (no matter whether or not the damn thing had been attached to me at the time) and still saved the day, saved me, by reading off those rituals. And she’d obviously meant something to him.
Also, in a way, he reminded me a bit of the Wiseman.
“Yeah. I don’t know the name or anything, but I know it came from the book.” Fat lotta help I was.
“What were the words you were required to recite?”
And this was where I was screwed. It always came back to those words, didn’t it? I groaned and resisted the urge to bang my head against the nearest solid object, settling instead on rubbing my good hand down my face with my eyes closed.
“Don’t ask me that. Anything but that.” My hand stayed on my face for a moment, and when he didn’t respond, I opened one eye to look through my fingers at him. The look on his face was confused, and a little disapproving. Great. Just what I needed. Sigh. Well, here it went.
“Clatoo Verata…” That part, at least, I knew. It was just- Maybe if I said it real fast? Yeah, like that had worked before. “necktie.”
“S- something like that.” It was like staring at ol’ Spinach Chin when I brought back the book the first time. That look that said I’d screwed up. Well, maybe I had, but I wasn’t gunna take it from this guy. “Now you cut that out, right now. S’not my fault I can’t remember the stupid words- sounds like mumbo jumbo! Why couldn’t it have been something easy, like- abra cadabra! That I coulda remembered. But nooooo, it had to be- Necklace! Neckline! Neckpiece!”
“Yeah! That’s-” Not Giles. Who the hell-
“Did Buffy get her tea, Giles? I sent Dawn up with it, but I just wanted to make sure. She’s, you know, kinda important, and she looked really out of it up there. Not that anyone could really hurt the Buffster, cause she’s all tough and stuff. That’s our Buffy, tough as nails! And-”
“Do shut up, Andrew.”
Ahhh, the geeky kid I’d seen earlier. I turned to look at the door, where he was standing, and he had this kinda creepy grin on his face. He was bouncing in place, like he was excited over something, and considering he’d just been talking about his supposed friend being sick- waitaminute…
“How’d you know that word?” There was eying going on, and when I say ‘eying,’ I mean my suspicious eyes running over this kid who knew a magic word that came from the Necronomicon. How the hell did he-
“Klaatu Barada Nikto!” he pronounced, way too happy about the words, and my eyes narrowed. He didn’t seem to really care that I was glaring a hole through him though, cause he just went on like he hadn’t even noticed, giddy as a teenage girl on prom night. “I mean, are you kidding me? That’s, like, classic science fiction!” He paused, staring at me like he expected me to know what the hell he was talking about. When I just stared back, he sighed.
“1951, The Day The Earth Stood Still. Klaatu and his robot Gort come to Earth to deliver a grave warning; If the people of Earth don’t back down on the uber bad atomic power they’ve been building, then the aliens will destroy them. And- well, the military doesn’t take it too well, and they shoot Klaatu! And then, in order to stop Gort from doing bad things since Klaatu died, Helen- that’s the girl Klaatu falls in love with- has to tell him ‘Klaatu! Barada! Nikto!’”
“You’ve-” I just- stared. Those damn words, those three little words that had ruined everything- they’d been in some old sci-fi flick?!
It was one of those moments where you either laughed, or you broke down. I’m just not the kinda guy who’ll break down, so guess what I did. Yup, got it in one. I laughed my ass off. I don’t think Giles or the kid understood exactly what was so funny, and frankly, I didn’t give a damn. All this time, all that trouble with a goddamn army of skeletons, facing off against some freaky Deadite version of myself… It was so down right terrible it was hysterical. I was laughing so hard, I ended up bent over, speaking between the snickers that I let loose.
“Y- you mean to tell me- all I had to do- was watch some- cheesy space alien movie- from the fifties?” They were looking at me like I was crazy, and maybe I was. But hey, with all I’ve been through? I earned the right to be a little nutso. Better than cryin’.
“G- Giles? Is he, like- broken?” Geek Boy was backing up a step from the doorway, like he was afraid I was going do something. Had he missed the part where I told them I was the good guy? Oh yeah, Willow had sent him off before that, hadn’t she? Whatever. I wasn’t gonna hurt him, and I was pretty sure the older guy knew it at least.
“Quite possibly,” he muttered to himself, though I caught it anyway. One thing I’d found, since discovering this whole Promised/Chosen/Guy-From-The-Sky thing, was that I could hear a little better than I could before. I think I’m faster too, better reflexes, but don’t quote me on that one. It’d be hard to judge anyway- I was already pretty awesome before all this Deadite crap happened. Anyway, my awe-inspiring self aside, he was talking again, louder this time. “So the words you had to recite. They were-”
“Yeah, yeah, I remember ‘em now. Clatoo Verata Nicto.” I’d stopped laughing by that point, and I huffed. He frowned in response.
“Did you say them correctly when you drank the potion?”
Told ya he was just like the Wiseman.
“Now you look here! Maybe I didn’t say every single freakin’ little syllable, like Mr. Sci-Fi-Geek-On-Wheels over there, but yeah I said ‘em!” Stupid book. “Basically…” Stupid words. This was not my fault. Damn it.
“The Necronomicon,” he groaned, pulling off his glasses once more, this time to rub at his eyes, “is capable of very powerful magicks, and it is most fickle. Even the slightest mispronunciation of its spells could mean disaster.” He looked tired all the sudden. Yeah, well, I was tired too. So damn tired of that book, and everything that went with it. “I will need to look through what the Council salvaged of it, after it was recovered from Dr. Knowby’s cabin, to see if I can learn more of the spell that brought you here. Andrew will-”
“Recovered?” He was joking, right? He had to be kidding. That, or I’d misheard him. “Are you people stupid?!”
“Would you have rather it was left in the cabin for any fool to find and read from?”
“I burned that thing for a reason!” I growled back, but he was already moving toward the door.
“Andrew will see that you’re taken care of, Mr. Williams.” Then he was gone, and the kid was staring at me like I would eat him alive now that we were alone. Just- dandy.
“C- c- can I, uh. Get you anything? Mr. Chainsaw?” Skittish, like he’d run if I so much as looked at him twice. For a moment, I considered half lunging at him, just to see what he’d do, but if I was gonna be at the mercy of these people for awhile, it was probably better to be nice. See, I not an idiot- I can think long term when I have to!
“Just call me Ash, kid,” I told him, even as I started to work on the harness strapped across my chest. Maybe if I put down the weaponry, he’d calm down. Not that either Buzz or my Remington were going far, but hey. I could compromise.
“If- only if you call me Andrew.” Hey look, the kid had a backbone. “I’m not a kid, I’m an essential member of the Watcher’s Council. And- and I have very important duties here. The Slayers look up to me.”
“Slayers, huh.” It wasn’t the first time I’d heard that word. I half remembered Buffy using the word back before the Deadites showed up, but I had no clue what it meant. Some kind of code name? But they called themselves some kind of Council? “Why don’t you tell me what a Slayer is, and we’ll go from there?”
Something lit in his eyes- fire, passion, excitement, and suddenly I wondered if that had been the best question to ask as he all but bounced before me. When he started speaking… I knew I was in for it.
“Dear, dear Ash. Let me explain to you the tale of the ultimate champion for the light of this world; the heroic and noble Slayer of the vampyres.”