Dark Willow and the Malocchio has summoned Buffy and her friends for one last battle. Who will die fighting and who will walk away… if any.
Dark Willow takes her newly recruited Slayer to meet the Malocchio. Will they get along? And what, exactly, is everyone’s plans?
She could feel him before she even realized who it was. All along it had been him. How ironic and hilarious. The man who had tried to squeeze into the Scooby Gang and help them all turned out to be the big bad who was ultimately tearing them apart. It gave Will a dark sense of satisfaction, and as she allowed the aura of his power to circle her and lead her in the right direction, she savoured the fact that he was just as devious, dark, and malicious as she herself way. They would make a great team; not to mention the mini vamp who was just jumping for joy to be at Will’s side and help her maim and mangle unsuspecting victims. Who needed friends like Buffy and Xander when she had so many others just overjoyed to be on her side. She scoffed as she strode through the park, looking around. Though she was eager to get to him, she needed to recharge first. The blood from her fight with Buffy was still fresh on her hands, and Will still felt a buzz ringing through her. The odd and fearful looks she was receiving just added to her excitement.
They were close, really close. The prime target she had felt earlier while extending her aura to reach out and touch everyone elses, searching for a powerful source to feed from. It was another witch. They had a familiar feel to them, and when Will strode up behind them, she realized why— it was someone from her Wicca group at the university. One of her friends, and Cecily’s as well. Will smiled malevolently and extended a hand, touching their shoulder. They whipped around quickly, their eyes widening. “W-Willow!” the other girl exhaled. She had pretty brown eyes, and Will bit her lip as she looked at her, her hand slowly travelling down to the girl’s chest, where it became glued as their two powers connected. “Hello, Brit. Long time, no see,” she said calmly, before pressing down with her hand. Brit, as the girl was named, threw her head back and screamed as the life and energy was drained from her body, pouring into Will like a battery pack plugged into a wall. The hairs on Will’s arms stood on end as the energy rushed into her, filling her with an elation that mocked a mild orgasm.
When she finished, she peeled her hand off the girl’s chest and watched as her lifeless body fell to the ground. People were already giving her funny looks, and gasping, putting their hands over their mouths. She couldn’t be bothered with mortals, however, so she waved a hand and disappeared in a swiping motion, leaving behind a dead girl and the mournful cries of the on-lookers.
He was in a place that Will had been to once before. It was a quiet place, a small cafe that only locals who had lived here decades knew about. They served coffee, spirits, and cookies. The best in all of Rome. Will moved swiftly around the tables, making a beeline for him. She knew he knew she was coming. There was a latte sitting on the table across from him, with a pumpkin cookie as well; it was like he already knew her. Will took a seat, smiling. “Nice to see you again, Malcolm,” she said satisfyingly, and took a sip of her warm latte. “I see you were expecting me. But then again, with all that power you have inside you, how could you not have?” she tipped her cup to him and took another sip, savouring the warm flavour of fresh Italian coffee, rolling it on her tongue. He smiled pleasantly back to her. She leaned forward. “I figured it out, you know,” she cut him off. “All those things, you didn’t say them to make Willow feel better. You said them to her to make room for me. You made her doubt herself and everyone around her,” she explained, then sat back with a triumphant grin on her porcelain face.
“Might I say, good job. I think I kinda like you,” she offered, picking at the cookie on the small, delicate plate. “I also think you and I could come together to make one excellent duo,” she added on, taking a bite. “Your thoughts?”
Malcolm sat silent in his seat; one leg crossed over the other, with a hand raised to his mouth. It rested loosely over his studdled chin, while the other crossed over his abdominal. In said hand, he was flipping and closing his pocket watch over and over again. The tick tick ticking and click click clicking created a sort of soothing, distracting noise from people chattering and sipping in the coffee shop. The acoustic guitar playing over head irritated him. The stench of people irritated him. He focused on the smell of coffee that sat untouched in front of him, while another cup was set in front of the empty seat in front of him by a cute little blonde waitress. “Can I get you anything else, sir?” Drawn out from his mind palace, he looked up sideways at the waitress, then shewed her away with the hand at his lips. Rude.
A knot had been gathering in his chest. It wasn’t good, nor bad. It just sat. Unaware of what it was, he didn’t linger to long on the feeling. Feeling. It was new. Weird. His green eyes sunk over to the freshly new brewed latte, steaming up and dissolving into nothing. A layered design sat perfectly untouched on the top of the drink. He waved his hand slightly as the foam swirled and separated itself into the image of a tree. It amused him for the moment. From across the cafe, the chiming of the front door rang in his ear. He didn’t need to look up. Malcolm felt it. Willow had weaved her way through the crowd of late night coffee goers and slipped down into her seat, where she immediately picked up and sipped at her latte. The red head started in praising him for his treachery and manipulation of young Willow’s mind. He smirked. It didn’t take much. He was actually somewhat disappointing in himself with how much he slacked at crawling under the wicca’s skin. She pitched the idea that had been planted in his mind since day one. Could it get any easier?
"How my little tree has grown." he said while sipping at his coffee. "It would be my pleasure."
Isabella had risen early that day, after having the inability to fall asleep at the reasonable hour of dawn. She hadn’t felt hungry when she first woke up and the temperature outside did not please her: it was much too cold for the child’s liking. So she had stayed inside that night, playing with three of her favorite dolls: Maria, Vittoria and Luisa. They were all names of her royal family members, previously related to her by blood or by marriage, but she never did meet any of them even once. But she had received a porcelain doll from each of them on her fifth birthday and they had remained her favorite ever since, her graciousness shown by naming the lovely dolls after the three lovely women.
All three of the dolls had a light olive skin tone, large brown eyes, blushing cheeks and pink that appeared extremely small in comparison to the eyes. Two of the dolls had dark hair as well that shone brilliantly in the light, contrasting very nicely with their lightly colored dresses. One wore a light green dress and the other wore one in periwinkle, the lace and ribbons that adorned and detailed their dresses in a clean pearly white. Her favorite one, however, was the one named Vittoria. Her skin seemed just a bit fairer than her blushing counterparts, her flushed cheeks more pink than red, brown eyes appearing golden in bright light, ruby red lips and soft, silky, light brunette hair. She was a glorious thing of beauty, only heightened by the dark, blood red dress adorned with a wide black ribbon and a petticoat of black lace.
Playing with the dolls had entertained the little girl for almost the entire day up until the evening when the sun was setting and she had decided it was a splendid time to paint! However, the only paint she had left from her formerly large surplus of it. She would have to make off with another few bottles of paint from the local art supply store or maim another nearby artist and steal paints and brushes she liked from him or her. With a clean easel and canvas, a cupful of maroon paint and a thick brush, Isabella set up her little work space by the entryway to her home and began humming an endless tune.
The tune didn’t stop until the small entrance to her humble abode opened, but the child was too mesmerized by the swirls of dark paint that looked oh-so similar to blood and her joyous tune until a familiar man’s voice, Malcom’s said “I brought you a gift.” Isabella dropped her brush into the cup and hopped up to face the darkly kind man. “Hello sir! Welcome to my home!” She chirped happily, hugging his legs.
The small child clung to his legs, squeezing them hard. A single eyebrow arched up as one side of his mouth curled up as well. With his free hand, he ran his fingers through Isabella’s long brown hair, letting the strands fall from his fingers. He bent down to her level, peering into her her wide, childish eyes. They beamed at him with joy. His hand moved to her chin, where he held it lightly. “How’re we doing, princess? Have you been getting into trouble?” The man stayed at her level, resting his arm on his knee. The child smiled at him, squirming with excitement to have someone around. She answered politely and expressed how lonely she had been.
To Malcolm, this was nothing more than a business transaction. Isabella may have been a vampire, a fierce one at that, but she was still a child. Malcolm knew how to play off that, which is why he brought the little vamp a gift. He slid the scarlet box in between the two and held it out to her. Isabella’s eyes ran over the box and admired it, hesitant to take it at first, but then accepted it. It was textured with velvet, and had a large red bow tied tight around it, keeping the lit held in place. Two small hands gripped the box ever so gently as she took it over to the table. Malcolm followed behind as she had already began to open the box. Isabella lifted the lid and inside was a brand new porcelain doll. It’s eyes black, skin white, and hair red. Curly, it fell past the small framed figure’s shoulders, and shone with a mahogany tint. Lightly painted freckles kissed the smooth glass all over it’s face, and it had rows of eye lashes. Dressed in all black, it was dressed in a button up shirt that pinned all the way to just under it’s jaw line, a long black skirt with lace over lapping it, and tiny black heels on it’s feet. The doll had been placed down on a bed of black velvet, tucked in safely. Isabella hesitated slightly before removing it from it’s bed and gently holding the small doll.
"Mommy will be with us soon, little one. But until then, here’s someone to keep you company."
Malcolm stroked Isabella’s hair again as she examined her newly acquired friend. He took a seat at the table next to the child and crossed one of his legs over the other as a creepy smirk sat on his face. Tilting his head up, then to the side, he spoke. “I have a job for you to do, too. Do you think you can do that for me?”
A creak and a step. A creak and a step. One foot in front of the other, Malcolm climbed the steps of a grand staircase in an abandoned house. It was a larger scaled than most houses around, and almost in pristine condition. The walls were decorated with a eggshell white wallpaper that had a very sophisticated and classy design. Soft. His hand rested and glided up the hand carved railing, while the other head a scarlet red box kept tucked under his arm.The stench of death slithered through the old home, and as Malcolm approached the top of the stairs, he looked to his right. The untainted wall paper on the wall had been torn. A clear gash across it would have suggested someone had tried to claw their way away from something. It was soaked in a deep, reddish brown stain that had long dried. Blood.
The stench brought a ghoulish smile to his face as his eyes looked to the other side of the house. A study had been placed at the top of the stairs, which is where Malcolm had been headed. It was clean, and tidy. Almost welcoming. Behind the desk that sat in the center of the room was a large, leather chair- dust free. He skimmed it before following it to the mantel fire place that consumed a majority of the wall. Walking around the desk, Malcolm stuffed his hands into his pockets before finding what it was he was looking for.
A latter. It led up into the attic of the house, but the door had been closed. A soft, warm light, dimly shone around the silhouette of the door, and if you listened closely, you could hear the hum of what you’d assume was from a child.
He climbed the flimsy latter, then pushed and flipped the heavy door over. The humming became louder now that it wasnt muffled. Malcolm propped the box that had been kept snug under his arm, up onto the edge of the opening, then pulled himself up into the large attic and stood, brushing the dauber off himself. “Knock knock, little one..”
Gathering up the box again, he tucked it back under his arm. Dozens of candles were lit and had been scattered throughout the dusty space, twinkling as he calmly took a few steps towards the source of the humming.
Isabell had been sitting in front of an easel- painting a large scaled piece of canvas with a dark red paint. It slid from it’s placement, dripping down the canvas and onto the floor. The little girl didnt turn around- just continued to paint.
“Come now, sweetheart…I brought you a gift.”
Warren: I'll do what I can.
????: Not good enough. You'll do what you're told or the deal is off. You have till the end of the week.