Buffy the Vampire Slayer Fan Fiction » Echo Of A Scream

This was the second story I wrote for the Inaguaral Buffy/Angel Lyric Wheel. That's because for most of the week I was wrestling with a Tara story, and then Dru showed up, sat down, and demanded to be written about. And would not take no for an answer.

So--disclaimer, once again: I do not own Drusilla or Angelus. They are very definitely the property of Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy. I'm just playing in their universe for a bit. Once more, thanks to Sherry for the lyrics to "Promise."


By Farquarson

Run and catch, run and catch. The lamb is caught in the blackberry patch.

The old nursery rhyme keeps capering about in my head. My head, which is almost too heavy to hold up, feels as if it were clogged with thick and greasy cotton wool. Even my thoughts are muzzy and indistinct, as if the effort of forcing thoughts through all that wool wears away the sharp edges. The air is electric, as if a thunderstorm were about to break.

Shining, out-of-focus halos of colors that have no name surround everything. Chairs. Shoes. Daddy’s braces, hanging over the edge of a laundry basket of clean clothes that the tweeny hasn’t yet put away. My hands. A stray dog barks outside the house somewhere; the sound tears at me in jagged bites, and, terrified, I glance at my haloed hands, expecting to see great bleeding gouges. A trace of smoke from Daddy’s pipe uncoils in the air, a thick, purplish-red smell that sounds like a low snarl.

It’s always this way. It has been for longer than I can remember, though my older sister Margaret says that I used to be better than this just a year ago. Margaret doesn’t understand that there are hundreds of thousands of years in a minute. Sometimes the halos of nameless colors and the sounds that grab me and the smells I can taste wink out for a few seconds. Then the world goes all flat and grey and November for two or three seconds that last forever.

Margaret says that’s the real world. It doesn’t feel very real to me.

I can hear Daddy in the parlor, arguing with Margaret. About me, of course. It’s always about me, these days. It’s gotten worse since Mummy died, coughing and choking on sputum and blood. Mummy used to say I was “fey” or “pixy-led” when I talked about how I felt on days like today. Daddy just glares at me, and talks about Bedlam Hospital.

“She’s not that bad,” I hear Margaret saying emphatically as I press my ear up against the door. “A bit simple, maybe…”

“Daft,” Daddy says grimly. “Utterly and completely mad. No hope. The best thing we could do is commit her to Bedlam—under an assumed name, of course, so that the marriage prospects of you and your sisters won’t be threatened.”

I can almost see Margaret toss her chestnut head angrily. “Threatened? Because of…”

“No man wants a mad wife,” Daddy says in a tight, controlled voice that sounds like cold iron chains. “Or mad children, either. If you care anything about your family, you’ll pray that she dies quickly in Bedlam, and that no one ever finds out who she was.”

Just as I open my mouth to scream at Daddy, closed parlor door or no, something clicks in my brain, and the world shifts. I feel as if I’m floating in space somewhere, studying the world through the lens of a very powerful telescope. Daddy’s and Margaret’s voices fade to pleasant hums as I focus my attention on a sunbeam streaming through the hallway window. I stare and stare, marveling at the shades of light in that one beam, the warmth, the dust motes—or are they really fairies, as the spiritualists say?—dancing in the sunlight. I’m still staring when Daddy and Margaret come out of the parlor hours—or is it only minutes?—later.


Silver running in the blood/ Never bodes the bearer good.

Mummy used to recite that when I was little. She always used to sigh, and say that people with silver in their blood—the saints and the poets—lived in a mystery and died in misery. And then she would cry. I never knew why.

Not till now.

I’m sitting here in my room, staring into my mirror, and trying to get used to the new name that’s been wished on me. Drusilla. I don’t even like the sound of it. Daddy chose it. He said it was a good name for a mad girl, and what difference did it make what I was called in Bedlam tomorrow anyway?

Bad Daddy. If Mummy were alive, she wouldn’t let him throw my name away, as if who I am isn’t important.

I’d like to be downstairs—-there’s light and laughter there. But Daddy is having a visitor tonight—an important businessman, I’m told, and one who might end up marrying Margaret—so I must hide in my room with the door locked and the drapes drawn and almost no light, pretending I’m not real. I’ve only one lonely candle, and it’s hissing cobra-like to the shadows in the corners of my room. I cower away from the beastshadows, snarling and readying themselves to pounce and devour me.

I glance swiftly from the shadows to my mirror and choke back an appalled scream. In the mirror, my eyes are just black holes and my face looks slack and dead. I whimper as I cringe back against my bed, my nostrils filling with the stench of rotting meat.

I know dimly in the back of my mind that the stink of corruption often comes right before the convulsions and the visions start, that it’s a symptom of something wrong. But tonight the reek of decaying, maggoty meat and the hot coppery smell of blood seem to be everywhere.

For an endless minute, I see the shadowbeasts racing toward me, black maws yawning open. The rank stench of decay and death is suffocating me—-I can’t even breathe. From far off, I hear the thin echo of a scream. Is it me, or is Margaret screaming at me to be quiet?

I slump bonelessly to the ground just as the door to my room clicks open. There’s a—shape—standing there. “I’m sorry, Daddy,” I struggle to say, but there are lead weights on my lips and I just can’t form the syllables.

And then the world whirlpools away into darkness. For a time.


Now I lay me down to sleep/I pray the Lord my soul to keep.

I have been here at St. Agatha’s Convent for a year now. The nuns weren’t sure whether to admit me at first. Not after what the police call The Incident. I only remember flashes. Margaret sprawled across the dining room table, both her emerald gown and her face torn to ribbons. Cook’s body gone, except for her head, baking in the oven. The babies—Matthew and Henry and Little Anne—lying on the nursery floor, broken dolls with missing eyes and limbs. Daddy, drained of blood and ripped to hundreds of pieces.

And I remember pain. And fire. And teeth.

I can’t remember anything else. I don’t even know how I got free, or if the killer let me go when he was bored with torture. Or maybe he thought that letting me go was a new variety he hadn’t tried yet.

Even though they tell me it was months ago, the nuns and police and doctors keep asking me what happened. And who did it. And when. And where. How can I tell them? “It was death,” I tell them. “Death came calling one evening. And so did the devil.”

I don’t know how long he tortured me, either. Long enough to leave heavy, twisted, ropy scars on my arms and back and belly and breasts. It was a day that stretched into forever. There was no end. There still is no end. It’s still happening.

The nuns say I’m mad too, just like Daddy does. Did. I don’t care so much now. I’m grateful, in a way, when the convulsions shake my limbs and the visions come. My thoughts feel clearer then, and not so lonely. Most of the time I huddle in my cell or before the High Altar, begging God to protect me from the Evil One who’s still out there. The nuns insist that God protects all His children. Then I recall that He didn’t protect me or my family before, and that makes me shiver.

It’s only when the visions come sleeping through the evening, singing dreams in my head, that the world and the fear both go away. If that’s madness, I’d rather be mad.

Things will be better soon, though. Soon I’ll be able to take my first vows and become a novice instead of a postulant. I’ll really belong to the convent then. The nuns will truly be my sisters. I’ll never be lost or alone again.


Ring around a rosy/ A pocketful of posy/ Ashes, ashes/ We all fall down.

He found me.

It’s all very jumbled up in my head. I remember kneeling before an altar and giving thanks to God for accepting my profession of vows. Only I don’t remember why I was doing that, or why it made such a difference once.

I do remember telling my beads as I knelt. And then, suddenly, he was there, reaching down and snapping my rosary into fragments. “Ah, no, Sister,” he said, and giggled hideously. “I know what you need.”

I think I screamed. Or maybe I only tried to. He glared at me. “Oh, go ahead and scream for help, Sister,” he growled. “Please do. I’ll take them all if you scream, just as I did at your house. And I’ll still take you. But I’ll make sure it hurts a lot more.”

I was confused. I still am. I don’t remember screaming for help at my house. But then, there’s so much I don’t recall. He might have been telling the truth. And if he was, then it was all my fault that everyone died. My fault. Because I was bad.

Hot acidic tears seared my cheeks. Everything seemed so hopeless.

“Now,” he said softly as he removed my wimple and weighed my heavy dark hair in his hands, “are you going to be a good little girl? Are you going to let me do what has to be done? Or are you going to make me hurt and kill more people?”

After that, I let him. I just…let him. Let him bury his teeth in my neck. Let him lift up my skirts and do something that felt like being reamed out with a mushy broom handle. I let myself slip away into death, hoping that would be the end.

But it wasn’t. It isn’t.

I just woke up, and for a moment I felt strange. Like losing a tooth. Something’s gone. Something hurts.

He’s staring at me, all human face now, as if he’s trying to figure something out. “By the way,” he inquires in a oddly courteous voice, “what’s your name?”

I stare at him in disbelief, remembering the rules of polite society. A gentleman is always introduced to a lady, as it is supposed to be an honor for any gentleman to meet a woman of quality. I struggle not to burst into uncontrollable laughter as I wonder what the rules of etiquette are regarding a vampire nun and her rapist-murderer.

“Drusilla,” I say. There’s no point in using my old name—-that girl died the night her family died—-and Sister Mary Agnes, my name in religion, has nothing to do with who…what…I am now. So let it be Drusilla for the time being. Mad, bad, passionate sister of a mad, bloody, sister-loving brother. It fits.

He nods. “Well, Drusilla,” he says, smiling wolfishly, “I suppose you can call me…Daddy.”

Giggles and snorts begin bubbling out of me as I spit and stutter stuff, then roar and guffaw some more. I don’t know why “Daddy” strikes me so funny. I just know that I can’t help laughing.

As I laugh uncontrollably, I hear—-we both hear, judging from his expression—-a commotion in the hall. The nuns. They must have heard the noise in the chapel. I can smell them, almost taste them. A sweet, rich, red smell. I lick my lips and edge toward the door.

“Hungry?” he says, smiling ferociously at me. “Hmm. I guess I’d better get my little lamb something to eat.”

Images of lambs caper about in my head for a moment—Mary and her little lamb, Bo-Peep who lost her sheep, the Lamb of God, and the Good Shepherd searching for lost lambs. Stolen lambs. Trapped lambs.

A snatch of an old nursery rhyme flits into my head and makes me giggle like a little girl. I am elated. I am all smiles. I skip toward the chapel door, clapping my hands as I chant.

“Run and catch. Run and catch. The lamb is caught in the blackberry patch.”

Eve 6

Sleeping through the evening, singing dreams inside my head
I'm heading out, I've got some ins who say they care and they just might
I run away with you if things don't go as planned
Planning big could be a gamble, I've already rolled the dice
I spit and stutter stuff and clutter worries in my worried corner
Maladjusted just untrusted rusted sometimes brilliant busted thoughts
Think I'll stay for a while, I'm intrigued and I'm red as a newborn, white as a corpse

I promise not to try not to fuck with your mind
Promise not to mind if you go your way and I go mine
Promise not to lie if I'm looking you straight in the eye
Promise not to try not to let you down

I am elated, I am all smiles and dated in my man-bites-dog town with a Spanish name
I am all bone, I am two-tone, red as a newborn, white as a corpse

I promise not to try not to fuck with your mind
Promise not to mind if you go your way and I go mine
Promise not to lie if I'm looking you straight in the eye
Promise not to try not to let you down

Why you gotta keep the fan on high when it's cold outside?
Just want to let you know that I'm still a fan, get it?
Everybody wants charm and a smile and a promise
I promise not to try

I promise not to try not to fuck with your mind
Promise not to mind if you go your way and I go mine
Promise not to lie if I'm looking you straight in the eye
I promise not to try not to not to not to leave

all content © 2003 to Farquarson. || design be 1GREENEYE