Date: Monday, August 18, 2003 11:19 PM
The first brownies they bake together come in a little packet, torn and poured to reveal good smelly powdered mix. They added water, and stuck the pan into My Little Oven. Jesse and Xander would drop by sometimes to pilfer the baked goods, but most of the time it was just Amy- who had just moved in- and Willow, the first friend Amy made in Sunnydale. Just Amy and Willow, mixing stuff up.
After Catherine Madison trapped herself in a tri-county cheer championship trophy, Amy's dad wanted to throw "all the witchy junk" far and away. Amy wouldn't let him. She kept him from cleaning out the attic, taking all of her mother's special things from all over the house, out of the kitchen, mostly, and in her room (Amy's. Her mother had moved a lot of items into Amy's room during the body swap, instead of just taking Amy's clothes off her closet) and she convinced her father that the best thing to do would be to lock the items up in the attic instead, rather than to tamper with all that potentially dangerous material.
Amy's father was a traveling salesman. His absence made it far too convenient for Amy to find herself poring over her mother's heaviest books, books that were hefty not only in the sense of weight, but, more tellingly, content.
Amy read the pages of battered tomes and newer manuals, each full to brimming with the Dark Arts. She read them all, and then she read them over again and again.
When Xander came up to her, ready to blackmail over turning in ghost assignments while altering Mrs. Hubbert's memories, all Amy had to do was think of Cordelia pushing her around- and everyone else, really-during cheer tryouts, and before, and then afterwards... Convincing her to say "yes" was never an issue.
Of course, the spell had to backfire. Amy had learned everything there was to know in the attic, much too quickly, and in this too short a time she had practiced barely anything to fair utility, much less perfection. And anyway, Amy wasn't shooting for perfect. Just enough not to shoot aimlessly in the dark. Throwing whatever on the walls, so to speak, to see what stuck.
The day every girl in Sunnydale within smelling distance (dead or alive) went creaming and screaming for Xander Harris, Amy learned she could turn humans into rats; that getting Harris stripped half-naked and painted in strips of red paint needlessly was very funny; that Buffy Summers had some strange strength mojo going on; that the funny, lumbering librarian had more experience with Dark magicks than her mother ever did. And that Amy had a lot to learn.
The next weekend her father went out of town, Amy walked all over the city until she could find what she was looking for.
She found it in an empty parking lot, recently vacated by a traveling carnival, the vacuum filled up in an alter-dimension with a flimsy cover leaving a trail for the curious and the hooked. It was run by what looked like a man who called himself Rack.
Amy spends the summer in a haze. She goes to Rack, she looks around. She learns about living on el boca del infierno. She meets Michael, but soon figures out that her powers surpass his. She even shares with Willow some of the new things she's learned on her own, but not everything. Some things are best kept a secret, all the better to enjoy them.
As a rat, the first thing Amy figured out was that she couldn't do magic. She scurried away, and damn was it stressing. Better to be a rat, than burned at the stake, though, right? Willow Rosenberg found her, scooped her up and took her home.
As a rat, the second thing Amy figured out was that she was probably more of a lesbian that she'd previously thought. Oh, she had accepted her bisexuality, if only because she had to choose a label and "bi" was what was readily available. She'd made out with Michael often, and liked it. Rack had done the magical equivalent of fucking her from behind, and she had learned to like it because the rush was too good, and besides which she aspired one day to fuck him up the ass in return.
She often saw Willow naked, pieces of Willow anyhow-large, gigantic Willow-breasts (which Amy knew were much smaller from a human's perspective) all seen from underneath, looming above her like a sky of Willow-ass, the cage seemingly forgotten in an unobtrusive nook, Willow walking the length of the room towards the closet, clad in the Emperor's New Clothes.
Amy thought about the Xander-scent, Michael and Rack and looked to Willow, sniffing. Later she will think: "Even as a rat, I liked girls better."
Just like when naked, Willow eschewed throwing a thick terry cloth towel over Amy's cage (used for particularly cold nights) during nudie touchie recreaction time with Tara. Amy, like the moment she'd figured out she was a rat, was very glad to possess and maintain a keen human intellect during moments like these. After all, Amy had never had sex with a woman before. She approached these Tara/Willow moments as a kind of educational 3D movie, which also proved highly entertaining, and- from her rat's vantage point- larger than life, indeed.
So she'd toss up the seeds and munch on the pellets imagining popcorn, and soak it all up. She also made note of every spell Willow or Tara ever cast in her presence, together or alone, (not minding her, of course) the sweaty sex kind or not.
Another thing Amy was glad of was her photographic memory.
This is how she came to spend years as a rat.
The first thing Amy did when she found herself back in her human form was to scream. With the power of the spell, she forgot all her memories as a rat, sort of. What happened was that everything she'd learned as a rat could now only be remembered with the dimness of a past-ratbrain. It felt only like she had been missing for weeks, at the most. Willow filled her in.
They went to the Bronze and they stuck guys up on cages, and with each passing minute Amy regained her fuzzified rat-memories and remembered spells, and naked squirming Tara, and was careful to choose a guy at first, with a girl for Willow, because Amy was unsure about the fast-forward that had led to this new world, with the blown-up high school and the giant Mayor snake, who ate Larry, who would've been cute as a boyfriend if he hadn't been such a closet case.
Amy looked at the sheep and the white floating demon, satisfied that her powers hadn't atrophied, and absorbing all the gone rat-senses and the lessons she'd learned as a furry rodent. Normal-human, bad-witchy Willow was beginning to look very cute.
"I just keep thinking ... there's gotta be someplace, like, bigger than this." "Besides, it's way too early to go home yet."
Amy chooses the bad part of town. Willow chooses the sleazy, cheap motel. It charges by the hour.
It is Amy who really starts things, little pecks and nips, all without magic. At first, Willow doesn't make a move, just stares at her with mouth ajar, green eyes meeting brown eyes with only questions and finding no answers.
"I like you, Willow."
Amy kisses Willow's open mouth, and moves her tongue experimentally. Willow grabs her and begins to kiss back in earnest.
If it is Amy who initiates things, then it is Willow who decides to thoroughly fuck Amy almost into oblivion.
A quick learner, Amy decides to reciprocate.
They do amazing things to each other in the space of a few hours.
If anyone notices the sparks fly, along with other, less magical markers like the unmistakable noises of passion and lust, nobody bothers to complain about it because it's the bad part of town for a reason.
When Willow had made Amy human again, she had made her scream. Amy felt it was only fair to return the favor in spades.
"Uh, hey, uh ... this is Amy. Amy, Tara, Tara, Amy." "--I mean, I can do some transmography, but she is messing with dimensions and everything, it was awesome! This blowhard dude, first she made his mouth disappear? Thank god. And then- "
She talks in exclaimations about the Bronze, and sees from Willow's expression that they are to act as though Absolutely Nothing happened last night. Willow's eyes are fixed on Tara, running away.
"Hey Will? It's your birthday."
Amy just wants to cheer Willow up."You know what I notice? You're not denying that you had fun." "Shut up."
But Willow didn't like that.
Or pretended not to. In any case, bridges were burned, and Amy was left to plot revenge."If you really are my friend ... you better stay away from me. And if you really aren't... ...you better stay away from me."
Her mind starts rifling through curses the instant Willow closes the door on her face.
Amy was going to stay away. Next time, she'd leave it to Willow to seek her out.
For the next year, Amy didn't actually spend her days calling for Willow's blood and misery. She heard about the shooting, and felt bad for Tara.
Amy got busy. She lives independently after fixing her dad's memory. He thinks she spent those years with a host family in Portugal studying cooking and Romance Languages. Now that she's twenty-one, she's selling the house in Sunnydale. Her dad never liked living here anyways. He's letting her keep the profit because he knows she's usually jobless.
Business is not booming in Sunnydale. A lot of the humans are starting to get dreams about the Hellmouth opening. She's getting them, too.
She only gets the idea of the penance malediction spell when she runs across Buffy at the supermarket. Buffy pretends not to see her. That's when her Willow-hate wakes up angry.
Amy was going to ask her how Willow was doing with the whole "I'm addicted" schtick. She finds it laughable that Willow could blame all her problems on the supposed addiction of magic. Magic wasn't wrong like money wasn't the root of all evil. It's what you do with it that counts. It shouldn't own you: you own it.
Even with Rack, Amy knew enough to only go on binges and then stay away for weeks, or even months at a time. Rack unfortunately had to disappear after Willow tried to end the world. Amy thinks it's funny that Willow would probably blame magic for turning her into a murderer.
She had to cook up something good, better than the cat-hex on Miss Kitty Fantastico, who had terrified rat-Amy on a number of occassions, rattling her cage menacingly, pouncing on it when rat-Amy was running on her little wheel. The cat-hex was economical: "projectiles will find this animal." Either a cross-bow or a car was bound to kill it, Amy thought.
For Willow, she didn't want death. After all, Willow was a person, not an animal, and Amy was better than Willow about recognizing the difference between right and wrong. Amy didn't want to kill her, she just wanted to have some fun.
In the end, she decided that Willow was perverse enough to figure out the proper punishment for her own damn self.
And all she had to do was watch.
Ninety-five percent of the humans are on their way to leaving Sunnydale. Even a lot of the demons are doing the same. Amy doesn't know where she's going. She actually doesn't have a lot of stuff. As a rat, she didn't need much. As a witch, she takes what she needs. She's not sentimental about leaving this hellhole. Working out her Willow issues hadn't actually been that fun. Seeing Kennedy was funny and all, and figuring out she could get the best (worst?) of Willow enough to almost make her disappear into the murderer of the love of her life she'd murdered was-something. She was over Willow. Still likes brownies, but can bake 'em on her own.
No harm, no foul.
When the apocalypse comes, Amy is sure as hell not dying in Sunnydale.
"You can't discount history, Oscar."
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Title: A Mi Manera
Author: Briar [email]
Details: Standalone | PG | 11k | 02/11/04
Summary: The story of Amy.
Notes: In this case, the tense shifts were intentional. When Amy's in a position of power present tense is used; when in positions of weakness, past tense is used. Even when she spends "summer in a haze", for example, because it's her choice and she feels -perhaps foolishly- as though she is in control of herself and her life.
notes2: title means "my way"
Spoilers: all seasons.
Distribution: list archives, my site, ask.
Disclaimer: I don't claim to own these characters. for (katydid) Kate. thanks to Cim for first beta; Isabeau and Sheila for second-wave.
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