stock: typewriter

fic:into the ocean/BtVS,Dark Angel/Gen

Title: Into the Ocean
Word Count: 2335
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dark Angel
Prompt: #364 dystopia @ tamingthemuse
Rating: FR13
Disclaimer: Buffy the Vampire Slayer and all related characters are copyright Joss Whedon and ME. Dark Angel and all related characters are copyright James Cameron, Eglee Production and Twentieth Century Fox Network. No infringement intended.

Note: Part of a much larger story I’ve been working on for ages. Think of this as the prologue.

Glass littered the ground, crunching beneath the soles of Daniel—Oz to a select few—Osbourne’s boots as he pushed his bike the rest of the way home. Riding the BMX through this terrain tended to lose him tires, tires he couldn’t afford to replace at the moment, or any moment really, and Oz had long ago learned the merits of being frugal. He steered the bike around a crack in the street; though, truthfully, he was being generous referring to the crumbling asphalt at his feet as a street. It, like most of Seattle, had seen better days and the buildings he passed weren’t faring much better.

The remnants of what had once been Pioneer Square towered over him with broken windows and gutted buildings. The Pulse had taken place in 2009 and most of the districts in Seattle had crumbled beneath the repercussions that followed the terrorist attack. The attack had come just months after Oz had returned to the States, Seattle’s music scene had been calling him home, and he’d watched as the lights went out and the world fell into chaos. Martial law had been established soon afterwards and, as far as Oz could tell, Seattle had never left that state of emergency behind.

He caught sight of Cherry Street and turned his bike towards it, sparing a glance behind him as he did. This district wasn’t patrolled often, but Oz had been squatting there for nearly seven years and in that time he’d taught himself to remain aware of his surroundings. It helped that his hearing and sense of smell had heightened considerably since his time in Sunnydale. Living with a pack of his own kind in Tibet had taught him more than just mediation and the way to inner peace.

A smile curved the corner of his mouth inward as he recalled some of the pack’s more creative ways to teach him how to use his nose and ears more than his sight. Wolves didn’t actually have better eyesight than humans and thus it wasn’t heightened. Well, aside from the night vision, but that had more to do with the tapetum lucidum that hadn’t finished developing until after his time in Tibet and while that extra layer of tissue helped him in low light situations it didn’t enhance his regular eyesight.

Which is what had led to his pack blindfolding him for an entire month and that had taught Oz how to rely on his other senses and it had also left him injured from many falls down several different flights of stairs. A chuckle escaped him has he turned down the first alley on his right and head towards the back door of an abandoned bookstore. Right after the Pulse looting had gutted an already wounded economy and gave some credence as to why martial law was declared, but the fact that they’d looted a bookstore of all places still didn’t seem all that reasonable. His head shook as he put a key into the deadbolt, that he’d beaten the hell out of before installing, and allowed himself entrance.

The door swung inward with barely a sound since Oz had replaced the hinges, which had suffered the same beating as the deadbolt, just two years prior. He’d gone out of his way to match the previous set since he wasn’t exactly welcoming of fellow squatters and once others noticed a change in a building they tended to flock to it. Oz was only using the bookstore as an access point to his actual home and he wanted to keep it as unsuspecting as possible. There was no need to remind the rest of Seattle’s residents that there was still an underground city beneath the historic district.

A city Oz had taken up residence in once the Pulse had shoved him out of his apartment and onto the streets with very little money, but all of his possessions. His van quickly became a target for vandalism and thieves, forcing him to downsize his life into two duffle bags and his guitar case before hitting the streets. He’d stumbled across an access point to the underground by accident while attempting to escape one of Seattle’s harsh winters.

It had been boarded up and patrolled routinely at first and Oz had dodged them easily enough, but by twenty-twelve all of Seattle seemed to have forgotten about the streets beneath certain parts of the city. Oz had done his best to help them forget by vandalizing all the main entrances as best he could and he really hoped Bill Speidel, and his surviving family, forgave him someday to the destruction he’d laid on their underground tour headquarters. The building was still in one shape, but he’d destroyed any signage and then repeated the process throughout the historic district—especially the antique mall.

Oz wasn’t particularly proud of this accomplishment, but it was an accomplishment. One he was thankful for each time he found the underground as abandoned as when he first stumbled across it. He made his way through the back of the bookstore and towards the staircase that would lead him into the basement. The darkness crept in along the edge of his vision the further he moved from the few windows that weren’t boarded up, but his flashlight would remain unused until he was beneath the first floor.

Hefting his bike up, Oz was grateful for the aluminum frame as it settled over his shoulder and he made his way downward into the darkness. One hand gripped the railing on his left as he closed his eyes, allowing his nose and hearing to guide him as he made his way around the bend in the staircase. The air was already cooler as he reached the basement level, eyes opening as he fumbled in his jacket pocket a moment for the penlight.

The narrow beam cut through the near complete darkness in front of him as Oz made his way past the empty shelving and towards the door set into the far wall. As far as he could tell most businesses had used the underground as storage if their location was high enough. There were still some sections that could flood if given the right provocation in the deeper recesses of the underground and Oz did his best to avoid those sections. He slipped another key into a less worn dead bolt before pushing the door inward and letting himself into the underground. The air was colder still and he closed the door behind himself and paused to lock it before heading home.

The bike remained on his shoulder as he eased his way onto the wooden walkway that had once been part of one of the tours and followed it past several buildings and through a few others. The brickwork around him was still astonishingly well-maintained when compared to those aboveground. He slipped between the railings of the next section and inside a building that was mostly four walls with windows and little else. He exited out the back of that building and followed the dirt path to a set of stairs cutting through the rough brick.

They led him up and into what had once been a bank before the fire that had demolished most of Seattle—he’d read some of the brochures before destroying them—and Oz propped his bike against the opening. The lanyard holding his Jam Pony ID was dragged over his head and wound around the handle bars before he used the pen light to guide his way through his darkened living space and towards the fuse box along the far wall.

Oz had helped himself to the local buildings’ electricity, and their water, though the water hook up had given him more issues than anything else and he’d spent the better part of that construction reading how to manuals. Though he’d mastered E-flat diminished ninth and, when compared to that, plumbing had been relatively easy. The required pipes ran through most sections of the underground. The real trick had been finding the right ones and ensuring his shower wasn’t tapped into the sewer. That had been the deciding factor in picking the bank as his home.

He reached the fuse box and hit the breaker that would turn on the lights and space heater. Oz clicked off his flashlight as the floodlights hanging from the ceiling sputtered to life and pocketed it. He stepped back from fuse box and made his way into the room that had once been the vault. The metal door was still propped against the brick wall and since Oz had a hell of a time getting a bed into the underground he saw no reason in attempting move the vault door—besides, it gave the place character.

Shrugging off his jacket, he smiled up at the paper lanterns hanging from the ceiling of his bedroom that reminded him of his time in Tibet before he dropped the jacket on the dresser. He tugged open the top drawer and retrieved the first hoodie within reach and tugged it on over his head before exiting the room and taking the wooden walkway to what had once been the teller station that now doubled as a small kitchen.

He had a wood burning stove he’d stolen from the antique shop and mini-fridge, which was the only thing in his place hooked up to constant power. He knelt, snagging a beer from the fridge and straightened only to frown when he heard the faint sound of footsteps from further in the underground. Gravel crunched beneath a boot heel and Oz offered his place a muttered, “Damn,” before returning the beer to the fridge and straightening.

His head inclined as he closed his eyes and inhaled, face turning as he caught a whiff of something on the air. The hairs along the back of his neck rose of their own accord as he recognized the not so subtle scent of vampire. A frown tugged his brows down since vampires—and most demons—avoided larger cities nowadays. Twenty-twenty was not kind to those with special dietary requirements and humans in larger cities tended to be suspicious of strangers.

Though he’d heard a gang of them had set up shop in the ruins of Los Angeles and possibly some had wandered north in the hopes of stupider pray. Oz rolled his eyes before retrieving a serrated bread knife, which was longer than his forearm, from countertop and made his way from his home and down the stairs before he paused to inhale again. The scent was still weak, but the footsteps grew louder and beneath the shuffle Oz heard the faint and steady pulse of a human heartbeat.

A snort shook his shoulders before he made his way back to the wooden walkway and followed the sounds of the footsteps while keeping his nose turned to any possible additions to this shindig. He remained aware of his surroundings with ease; something he’d grown accustomed to in Sunnydale and his time on the road had only honed the reflex.

He drew closer to original entrance of the underground, the one he’d been certain to vandalize the most, but appeared to be where the twosome had entered. He added the re-demolition of the entrance to his mental list of important things to do right beneath guitar practice for the morning—it was a short list. A flashlight cut through the darkness ahead of him and he frowned as it bombed along before ducking between the railing and setting himself up beside the brick wall.

The knife was brought to front and he exhaled, centering himself and waiting for the opportunity for a surprise attack. An opportunity that was ruined by a familiar voice calling out, “Oz-man? That you?”

Blue eyes narrowed and his brows tugged together tighter at the sound of Devon’s voice as Oz made his way back to the walkway and vaulted the railing as the flashlight, which was more of a lantern, flooded the spot he’d been with light. He frowned at his former friend as he continued forward and brought the flashlight to point at his hoodie-covered chest. “Hey, man!”

Oz took in the paleness of his features and nearly un-aged appearance before replying, “Devon, we’ve talked about this.”

“We did, we did.” Devon agreed, his head nodding and the flashlight bobbed with the movement, “I don’t bother you and you don’t stake me.”

“Right.” Oz inclined his head in question and awaited the explanation as to why Devon was in Seattle when he knew the consequences. The singer stepped aside and presented Oz with the owner of the heartbeat still going strong and steady at his back. Oz blinked, frowned and blinked again before stating, somewhat dumbfounded, “Buffy?”

“Hey, Oz.” She offered him a timid wave and he noticed the duffle strap on her shoulder as she asked, “Can we talk?”

Before Oz could hazard a reply Devon shoved the flashlight at Buffy and began to walk backwards down the wooden platform with the statement, “I’m gonna go. You two kids have fun!” And with those words he fled.

The heavy footfalls of Devon’s exit accompanied the awkward silence that stretched between them with his departure and Oz turned back to Buffy. He studied her nearly unchanged face and frowned, but his noise told him she wasn’t a vampire and the heart now thudding in her chest supported the theory.

He offered, “You look good.”

Her lips twitched. “So do you.”

“Werewolf,” he offered for explanation.

She nodded and countered, “Coma.”

He nodded as if her one word reply explained anything at all before turning to the side and offering, “Want to continue this with beer?”

“Yes, please.” He turned and she fell in step behind him, the flashlight still pointed at the ceiling and her heart slowed in her chest before she offered, voice conversational, “Nice knife.”

“Thanks. It cuts a mean slice of bread.”

“With that edge I believe it.”

The end(ish).
  • Current Mood: tired tired
I liked the friendship they seemed to have on the show.

Though there was a small part of me that always wanted Buffy to get scratched one night while guarding/watching Oz and get infected. They'd of course have to flee Sunnydale because the Council couldn't allow a Slayer!werewolf to live and Oz would be too good a person to allow Buffy, a new wolf, to run on her own. They could stumble across Beacon Hills... and that is how crossover bunnies are born.

Thank you! I think posting this will be the kick in the ass I needed to get the story off the ground. I've never actually been to Seattle, but yay! for making it sound like I have! A lot of research, google image searches and google map use went into the making of this story.

Though I do intend to see Seattle. It's on my list and I wish to visit the Fremont Troll!
*twirls you*

Hooray for a Buffy-Oz story! And hooray there's gonna be more! Especially 'cause I wanna know why Buffy was in a coma. :D

And Oz would be more than just a survivor. He's got wits about him and is able to make the most of every situation. Love how aware he is of his surroundings.

*twirls again*
*twirls back*

Don't Hooray until I get more than just this ficlet posted. ;) Though I think the sneak peek for this story is floating somewhere around my LJ that does sorta explain why she's in a coma - it goes by Buffy's memory and it's a bit hazy on the hows and whys.

Oz is finding his nitch, but he's also got to be careful since he's not aging like regular folk. He can't live with a group of people or he'd have to be ready to leave once they start to notice his youthful appearence remains youthful. With his own place he just has to switch jobs. He's a smart cookie that Oz. ;)

Ooooohhhh, it's part of that verse! I actually think I've read more than a sneak peak. I think I might even have an entire scene saved on one of my comps that you sent me once.

I have been working on this monster for awhile now. ;)

Mayhap it might get completed next year. I've no illusions that I'll get it done this one.
This is very intriguing, such a natural crossover. I'd be fascinated to read more (makes puppydog eyes)!
Re: fascinating
Thank you! I hope to have more up as the story progresses. Thank you for reading!
I read this and the other part if the story you also posted, and I really like what I see so far! Hope you don't mind me friending you to keep an eye out for updates :)
I'm glad you enjoyed it and friend away! Just don't feel bad if I don't friend you back. This is my personal journal, but all my fanfic is public.

Thank you for reading!