Tiberius's last prophecy.
The rhythmic bleeping of the heart monitor and the quiet rasp of breathing was all the noise in the room. The scent of cleaning supplies combined with the medicine smell, drifted through the room.
The door opened and in walked doctor Jiro. “Mister Giles, may I have a word?” It was obvious the news wasn’t good.
“Doctor, thank you, but these three deserve to know what’s going on as much as I do.”
Willow’s tear streaked face, Xander’s visible heartache, and Faith’s tightly controlled emotions all spoke volumes about how each was handling the stress of their friend’s state.
“Alright, then. To be honest, I’m amazed she’s still alive. She managed to have her liver lacerated, as well as a portion of her kidney damaged. I’ve never heard of anyone surviving surgery in those conditions, so we’re well into the realm of medical miracle as it is. With the amount of blood loss, we’re very lucky to have her in as good of shape as she is. Surgery went very well, all told. There were a few complications, but nothing serious, we managed to remove the damaged portions of the kidney, as well as seal up the liver. She has a long road ahead of her, even considering her, shall we say, astonishing capabilities.” Doctor Jiro had patched Buffy up before, and knew her recoveries were anything other than normal. “While she’s doing well, we haven’t seen any response yet to the treatments. She’s stable, thankfully, and that’s far better than anyone else in her situation would be. If you need anything, I’m sure we can help out, as always. And thank you.”
Stunned silence followed the doctor out of the ICU room.
Xander broke the silence. “Buffy, you're my hero. We'll take care of everything. We'll get him for you.”
Faith's voice wavered just slightly. “X, you know that we all want her to get better. But those injuries are less than I had when I got stabbed when you guys were back in high school. And taking that orange... G? What was that thing?”
The question Rupert Giles was dreading. “Well, I suppose I'll have to consult my books to be sure. The reference I seem to remember has been quite some” He was interrupted.
“Giles? You know that we can tell when you're stalling by now, right?” Willow's emotions bled through her words. “Now, quit trying to protect us, and tell us what you think it is. We need to know.”
Giles sighed, “Very well, If I remember correctly, there was only one creature with a description like that. The Tiberius Manifesto, one of the lost books of slayer prophecy had a central passage that was copied out nearly four hundred years ago. I'll look it up, and let you know at once.”
They took time to whisper their promises to be back to visit Buffy as soon as they could.
Sorting through several books took less time than normal. Soon the fragment was before them.
Eyes of violet shed violence
Spurs of bone shred dreams
Skin like a gourd, unbreaking
Of the Seven, most insidious, least recognizable
He will end the line of the defender
The selfless hero
The thrice living
The champion of the jealous
And from his will
Those who feast without end
Find their fullness of purpose
Worlds will never be the same.
Mactimus will rain pain and suffering.
-Here is the final prophecy of Tiberius,
-I write as he spoke these words,
-May my words hold the truth as his did.
“As you can see, there isn't a lot here, but it's the only thing I can think of now. Violet eyes, bone weapons, and skin, like a pumpkin. What more can we ask for?”
“Well, I, for one, am a big fan of finding a way to kill it.” Xander's dry wit fell flat even in his own ears. “Skin unbreaking? That matches what happened when Buffy hit it with her sword tonight, and I didn't see a mark on it then. But, well, I was a little busy with Dusty, the dust bunny.”
“We've got another problem, G. Am I the only one who thinks that we'll never find anyone else who can be called the thrice living?”
“Oh, good lord. I missed that. The line of the defender then may fit to be the Slayers. But nothing I've heard calls a slayer champion of the jealous, so it may be something else.”
“Still, we need to tell the other's. Who's on babysitting duty tonight?” Faith's normal dismissal of the younger generation of slayers helps remind them what's at stake.