A plan gone wrong, with a bad ending for everyone
Joss Whedon and UPN and the likes (now) own Buffy the Vampire Slayer and all herein characters. The Concept of Immortality and the “Game” are concepts belonging to the Television series “Highlander” as well as the preceding movies, the TV show of which is owned by Rysher Entertainment. A limited portion of this story, where Buffy is actually a three thousand year old Immortal was inspired by another fanfic, “The Immortal Life of Elizabeth Summers” written by Akraen. This is only mentionable ideas rather than whole copied texts, not to mention happens very different from his story. The concept of the Game being a fallacy was first conceived of by Steve Pantovich for his own Buffy/Highlander crossover in “Calling Out the Clan” and the whole Wandererverse Chronicles. Anything else to mention, e-mail me. Enjoy!
The Immortal Summers
Joyce Summers glanced at her watch for what must have been the fifth time that night. It was only one twenty three in the morning. Sighing, she got up from the couch and took her empty teacup to the sink, and prepared another cup of tea. Before she had even gotten the tea bags out though, the front door suddenly burst open and a young female voice with a Bostonian accent cried out to the elder woman.
“Joyce! Help!!” Faith shouted as loud as she could as she and the blonde beside her strained to hold the weak wooden door closed.
Joyce didn’t hesitate, dropping the fuzzy “housewife” robe and racing to the front, grabbing a Celtic short sword out of the umbrella holder next to the straining door. She stood next to the two young looking women; ready to help them fight whatever was on the other side of that door. “Faith! Buffy! What is it, how do we kill it, and why are you hiding from it?” she asked, intense and then confused as she realized that it took a lot for these two women, who had faced and killed hoards of vampires not to mention several demons, to hide from anything.
Buffy Summers, typical 18-year-old teenage Senior High school student by day, and Chosen One Vampire Slayer by night, glanced at her “mother” with an absolutely withering glare that both calmed and annoyed the older looking woman. “Mom
,” Buffy stressed the word with as much sarcasm as she could, “This is all your fault!”
“What do you mean?” the middle-aged woman asked thoroughly confused now, since instead of demons or vampires or some other type of monster outside the door, there were hundreds, maybe less, of angrily yelling adults. “Buffy, what’s going on? Who are all these people?” Joyce asked. Her black skimpy outfit, while great for the gym, was not something that she wanted half the people of Sunnydale to see, just a simple sports bra and skintight bicycle shorts.
Both slayers gave her a look that quite simply and obviously said, “Don’t ask.” Grunting with the strain of holding the door against the oncoming flood of people, Buffy answered with one word, “M.O.O.”
Grimacing in annoyance and understanding Joyce nodded and put her sword back and went to get dressed. Leaving the two girls to glance at each other and shrug. Unfortunately such action lost them some of the leverage they had gained and the door cracked open enough for several arms to reach inside. Grunting with the strain the two managed to get the door back to the almost closed position that they had it at before. Getting themselves comfortable, Faith turned to Buffy.
“You know B, I’m suddenly wondering why it is that first of all why we’re still here, and second, why don’t we save ourselves a hell of a lot of pain and trouble and kill ourselves right now.” Faith helpfully suggested.
Buffy just grinned at her sister slayer and said nothing until Joyce had returned.
When she did, she was dressed in tan slacks and a conservative matching business blazer that just happened to hold a M.O.O. pin on one of the lapels. “Ya know Mrs. S, you look really scary in that outfit, but not nearly as scary as you look in the morning before coffee.” Faith teased the woman.
“Very funny, Faith. Just for that, I’m going to be the one to kill you when we get to wherever this demon is drawing everybody to. Buffy, are you sure all we have to do is get the demon to reveal it’s true form, and then this madness will really end?” Joyce asked her “daughter”.
Buffy nodded and repositioned her shoulder before answering, “Yeah Joyce, don’t worry, the spell that ‘Hansel & Grettle’ cast over everybody will be broken, all you have to do is,” unh “get it to reveal it’s true form, and then we’ll take care of the rest.”
Joyce just nodded and grabbed her ankle length coat and the sword in the rack and then hid it in a secret patch of coat. Then she grabbed a bat that she had set up earlier and with no more warning than that, she hit her “daughter” across the back of the head with it, immediately rendering her unconscious. Faith, outraged turned to the woman that called herself mother to Buffy Summers. Unfortunately, which left the door wide open for the demon controlled crowd to come in, just in time to see Joyce drive a vase over Faith’s head, knocking her into unconsciousness as well.
Looking up at the mass of adults that had suddenly crowded her front foyer, Joyce Summers stared back at them with the same dead eyes that they all had. Then in a simple monotone voice she commanded, “Prepare them,” and then she turned to see two small children, two children that she had seen slain in the playground just a few days ago.
She heard their presence in her mind and understood them as they stared at her and said, “You have to protect us.” She answered, “I know, I just wish there were some other way. Sorry honey,” she added to her unconscious daughter.
She looked back at the crowd and saw Sheila Rosenberg and Principal Snyder at the literal front of the crowd, watching a few others tie up Buffy and Faith. Then, keeping her worried thoughts silent, she left with them…to the school gymnasium.
Thirty minutes later, Joyce stared calmly and helplessly as her only daughter, her daughter’s best friend, and another young woman, Amy Madison, were tied to stakes around several mounds of occult books. Buffy was just beginning to come around, while Faith was left tied up in the corner. Joyce wasn’t quite sure what they were planning on doing with her. Willow and Amy were already awake.
“Uh…wha?” Buffy mumbled as she took in her surroundings and predicament. ‘Well, this brings back memories…’
she thought to herself as the slayer looked down to see herself tied to a stake around kindling of books.
“Buffy, you’re all right!” Willow shouted when she saw Buffy awaken. Quirking and eyebrow at the statement, Buffy thought, ‘All right is not necessarily the word that I would use quite yet Willow.’
Instead Buffy just looked up and saw Joyce staring at her. Focusing, she could also see the two small children that everybody in town had been so adamant about avenging for the past week or so. ‘Oh goody, the gang’s all here,’
However things went south when Amy started threatening and trying to ward off the crowd. Buffy knew on instinct, not to mention personal experience, what Amy was planning on next. Before the young witch could even begin the incantation, Buffy stopped her.
“Amy NO!” she shouted. It broke Amy’s concentration enough that the spell dissipated before it even began. “Amy, I know what you were planning, but trust me, it’s not the way out!”
“There is no way out Summers,” Snider snarled out at her.
Buffy didn’t even waste the glare on the misguided fool. “Amy, my mom, Willow’s mom, your dad, they’re all under some kind of demonic spell. We just have to get the demon to reveal it’s true form. Unfortunately, my Mom has some kind of artifact that she found in her shop a few days ago that nullifies all magics in the area. Amy, the spell wouldn’t have worked anyway, not to mention if it had there would have been no way to undo it. Get me?”
Amy, sour faced, nodded quietly and then turned to face the dead eyed crowd, and muttered, “Might have been better than this.” Buffy quickly corrected her, “No Amy, trust me, life as a rat is not
better than being burned at the stake.” ‘I should know, I’ve done both more than my share of times.’
Amy grimaced in guilt. “Oh, yeah, sorry about that again.” Buffy just shrugged her shoulders and turned to the crowd just as her “mother” was handed the torch.
“Uh, Mom? You, uh, maybe want to put that out. You know it’s dangerous to play with fire,” Buffy pleaded with the blond haired woman.
“So is playing with the dark forces,” monotoned Joyce.
“Uh, yeah. Where’s Faith?” Buffy asked surprisingly changing the subject. Joyce paused and looked over to the corner where the dark slayer had been thrown. She was still there and still handcuffed. “What did you do to her?” Buffy asked with a note of panic.
“I hit her over the head with a vase,” Joyce replied.
“OK, so, uh, what are you going to do with her?” Buffy asked, looking Joyce in the eye. As she did, she somehow seemed to ask a question that Joyce was the only one to understand. “That’s none of your concern young lady,” Joyce answered, blinking both eyes quickly. Buffy smiled. Faith was already free, and Buffy had a knife in her left hand. ‘Everything ready?’
Buffy telepathically asked Faith. “Almost, Giles and the rest are fighting off a whole other mob just outside, but I’m ready with the weapons when you’re ready with the target.”
Faith answered in a likewise fashion.
Making a quick decision that she knew she might regret, but really hoped she wouldn’t, Buffy used the knife and cut the ropes that were holding her. A second later, she gave the signal to Joyce, who gave a likewise completely imperceptible signal back, and with that Buffy sprung into action. She kicked the torch out of Joyce’s hand, and right onto the twins that were behind this whole mess. The both surprising and unsurprising thing about that though was that the torch passed right through the kids, and caught fire to one of the low hanging M.O.O banisters.
In the next few minutes, as Buffy cut Amy and Willow free and knocked several of the adults into safe unconsciousness, Giles’ spell to reveal the demon was complete and it’s spell broken. After that, it was a matter of Faith coming in with the axe and the crossbow and a minute later, one more demon checked off in the slay column. That was the easy part.
Hard part came in the minutes after the defeat of the demon and Willow and Amy were congratulating the Slayers on a destiny well fulfilled. One of the morons, the ones that naturally hate and always need somebody to hate, came up with a bowie knife and Faith barely saw him diving for Willow in time to push the redhead witch out of the way, but not enough time to dodge the knife herself.
“Faith!!” Willow, Buffy, and Joyce all screamed.
It took all of Buffy’s common sense and self-control not to kill the bastard when she punched him to the floor. It wasn’t until he got back up that she saw he was a vampire that had snuck in. Buffy quickly shacked him up in what the M.O.O. people had put Faith in, and then turned all of her attention to her bleeding and dying compatriot.
“Faith, Faith!!” Buffy cried, shedding real tears as she held the dark slayer in her arms. “Faith, don’t do this! Don’t FUCKING DO
THIS to me!!! Faith, don’t die on me! Please, Faith, don’t die on me. I need you Faith, please, please don’t die. Please, please, please….” The blonde slayer trailed off into sobs as she begged her sister slayer to live.
Faith put a blood covered hand on the woman’s back and whispered hoarsely, “Don’t worry B…I-I’m not…not goin’ anywhere. Side’s, had to save Red. ‘koff, koff,’ You know me…always…got-ta be…the…hero……” And Faith died.
When the brunette’s eye’s glazed over and her head rolled to one side, everyone in the room knew that she was dead. At the sight, Willow cried out with anguish, and she didn’t stop sobbing for an hour at most. Joyce held the young girl to her and comforted her as best she knew. Buffy was sobbing just as loud as Willow, but held the body instead.
Finally, Buffy had cried all the tears that she would allow herself for the moment and she stood up and took Faith’s body with her. “Let’s go home,” she muttered to the mostly empty room, only her friends and mother still there. Oh, and Amy ofcourse.
“Buffy, is there…is there anything we can do?” Amy asked hoping to help in some way, pay back a small measure to the woman that saved her life, not to mention from being a rat for the rest of her life.
Buffy paused for a moment, and then turned to look at Joyce with a question in her eyes. Joyce considered it for several moments and then finally gave her daughter a soulful look and nodded her head. Buffy turned to Amy and quietly ordered, “Come with us.” Amy just nodded and fell in between Willow and Xander.
“Giles?” Buffy grabbed the counsel Watcher’s attention.
“Yes Buffy?” he was at her side in an instant.
She looked up at him and stared directly into his eyes. “Drag that sack of shit that did this with you. I want a piece of him, just to give him a taste of the torment that I’ve felt here tonight.” She had a dangerous look in her eye, and Giles can only nod his head and grabs Xander and Oz to help him with carting the vampire.
Joyce Summers catches up with her “daughter” and they make their way to the Summers’ car in silence. Faith remains in Buffy’s arms while Joyce gets behind the drivers seat. Joyce, seeing that Willow and Amy were making their way over to the car leans over to check on Faith.
After checking pulse, eyes, respiration, and temperature, Joyce asks Buffy, “Is she going to be OK?”
Buffy grinned and nodded. “It was just a knife wound to the right kidney and liver. I think it also might have opened and penetrated the right lung. Another fifteen minutes, tops. Which translates to Mom speak as ‘not a lot of time, so hurry, hurry, hurry!”
Joyce grinned back and nodded as Willow and Amy got into the back of the Jeep. “Hold on girls,” Joyce says before peeling rubber on her way out of the parking lot. Five minutes later, five almost terror ‘Nascar-could-not-have-been-better’ driving filled minutes, the Jeep pulled into the Summers’ residence and the second it was in Park, Buffy was out of the car, and opening the door to inside.
Once there, Buffy took Faith’s body upstairs to her room. Then she hurriedly went downstairs to be “comforted” by the others. Another five minutes of hugs and “It’ll be OK’s” later, Giles, Xander, and Oz arrived with the chained and gagged vampire. They brought him inside, but only after Buffy ordered, “Bring that fucking asshole in here guys. I think I’m going to enjoy this.”
The men noted the dark look on the elder slayer’s face as she said this, and all judged it wiser to do as told rather than to risk raising the slayer’s ire anymore than it already was. She had them dump it on top of the kitchen table. She then led them all into the living room and sat down to wait between Joyce and Willow.
“Buffy, honey?” Joyce tried to reach the girl she felt as a daughter. “What’s wrong? What are you going to do?”
“Buffy?” Willow squeaked, sounding very much like a scared young little girl. The blonde turned to the young witch and smiled, easing some of the latter’s fears.
“I’m waiting, Willow, I’m waiting,” Buffy told her quietly, stroking the girl’s crimson head softly.
“Waiting for what?” Willow asked in that little girl voice, and despite being in front of others, she closed her eyes in pleasure and leaned into the strokes Buffy was patting her head with.
Suddenly both Buffy and Joyce jerked their heads at something, though nobody else in the room could tell what it might have been. “Never mind…” Buffy murmured and kissed Willow’s forehead before getting up and heading with Joyce into the kitchen. “Stay here.” Joyce commanded. Nobody was in a mood to argue the point, and they soon found it moot as everyone for a block heard the vampire’s screams of agony, pain, and begged mercy.
Meanwhile upstairs; Faith suddenly jerked awake with a gasp of fresh life giving breath, and a buzzing in her head. Looking around at her surroundings, (Buffy’s room) and then taking in her bloodied appearance and the hole in her shirt, Faith quickly deduced what must have happened. “Aw, damn it
!” she cursed, falling back to the soft bed. A much better bed than what she had forced herself to sleep on for the past however many weeks.
That was hardly the point as Faith suddenly heard an unfamiliar, almost unearthly scream emanate from almost directly beneath her. As the image of the man who had killed her came into focus from her confused memory, Faith smiled as she got up and began to remove her stained and thoroughly ruined clothing.
The screams and near howling of pain emitted from the vampire came on and off for the next twenty minutes or so, during which Faith found a stash of her clothes she had left here earlier, which she dubiously noticed Buffy had replaced with several more modern or “softer” varieties of the outfits she had adapted to her personality (Buffy changed her clothing), and washing herself up. Getting skewered by a knife, while familiar to the original Boston dweller, that didn’t make it any less messier. After a half hour or so of the screams, Faith was impressed when she actually heard one such scream extend to nearly five minutes. It finally ended in a softer, yet almost grateful, unearthly demonic scream of the vampire finally being dusted.
Faith smiled and muttered to herself, “You’ve out done yourself B.” She was now dressed in tight dark blue jeans, a white tank top and a matching dark blue denim shirt left open. She had put on some wool socks that she found so her feet wouldn’t be freezing as she revealed her “miraculous” return to life.
Once she felt it was time, Faith made her way most of the way down the stairs, and stopped far enough from the bottom steps that she would not be seen by anyone in the living room or the dining room, yet she was out in the open if anyone went by, or up, the stairs. Which Buffy did in the next minute or so. Her hands were covered up to her elbows in vampire blood, and her cheeks were equally smeared. She was walking slowly, so nobody really thought it strange when she stopped right in front of the staircase and then turned her eyes to stare straight at Faith.
Her eyes conveyed all she needed of how sorry she was, and her guilt. Faith just grinned at her, maybe teasing a little, and shrugged at her. Then the dark slayer stared at the golden slayer with just as much intensity that she was receiving and mouthed the words, “I’m staying.”
The blonde immediately ducked her head, covering the smile that both Faith and Joyce instinctively knew was there. Then the mask of loss and depression covered her features once more as she walked the rest of the way into the living room.
“Buffy,” Willow whined in such a way that she sounded barely 3 ½ years old. “What did you do?”
Faith almost gasped from the realization, ‘Red’s in shock! Oh damn, what’s gonna happen when she sees me?’
Faith thought in fear. Then telepathically she communicated to Buffy, ‘B, ya gotta calm her down before I come out! If she ain’t ready she’s gonna collapse! I’ve seen it before; I didn’t become a field nurse for nuthin’ ya know!’ ‘Don’t worry Faith, I’ve got it covered, right Joy?’
Buffy replied without saying a word.
Joyce just smiled as though in sympathetic understanding at her daughter. Joyce had returned to the group shortly before the screaming had begun, and had held Willow, who had collapsed shortly into it, throughout the ordeal of Buffy laying pain to the vampire that had killed Faith. Joyce knew some of the thoughts running through everyone’s heads. They were partially relieved, afraid, but mostly depressed and the feelings that they would die tomorrow were that much more justified. Relieved because of how Buffy had reacted. She had gotten vengeance for Faith’s murder from her murderer. But she had also revealed a dark streak that none of them knew had even existed in the small blond slayer. The truth that she could torture, let alone do it herself, even to a vampire, made them wonder if she could, or ever would do something like that to them. It was subconscious worries for the most part; they all knew that Buffy would never hurt them. After all, it was because of Faith’s death that she did that. What she did, not even the older woman wanted to know.
“Will, are you OK?” Buffy asked, seeing the very fragile state of her best friend.
Almost immediately something changed in the shy redhead hacker. She straightened out of Joyce’s grip, and sniffled a little, and then wiped dry her eyes and nose and then looked Buffy in the eye and silently nodded. Buffy smiled. There was more strength to this young one than anyone could have guessed.
“How about the rest of you? Everybody OK?” she put forth to the rest of the room. She got silent nods all around. It was beginning to get on her nerves.
“Would somebody please say something?” she begged.
“Who are you?” Xander barked out.
Buffy blinked in surprise at the question. Then she did a double take and classically responded with, “Huh?” Xander, seeing that she didn’t know what he meant, elaborated. “Who the hell
are you that you can torture somebody like that? Yeah, it was a vampire, yeah it…it kill-killed Faith. But you of all people Buffy, you should not, can not torture somebody like that.”
Buffy waited a moment to make sure he was done before answering, “It was payback, not torture.”
“Huh?” came up all around the room, which effectively covered the soft snickering coming from the stairs.
“Torture is the use of pain techniques and fear to elicit information from a person or prisoner. I didn’t want information. So it was payback. I used fear, pain, and death to make myself feel better for not stopping the vampire in time. Xander, there is a lot you don’t know about me. And like you said, it was a vampire. I would never, could never hurt any one of you. You are my friends. That, that was one of the things I hunt and kill. Just because I got a little satisfaction out of taking out the one that killed my sister…” Buffy paused, her voice cracking from the emotions. “Just because I got payback instead of making it a clean kill is no reason to yell at me.”
“Xander, you think you know me? Heh, boy you have not even begun to know me. Do you have any idea how much death I’ve seen in my lifetime? Do you!? I have seen more death, more carnage, more…demons
than absolutely anybody could imagine. So as much entitled as I may be to a vacation, or maybe even Heaven, I stick around on the Hellmouth
fighting the good fight, saving other people’s lives and the whole fucking WORLD
, while putting my friends lives in danger! Xander, you haven’t even begun to know me.”
Joyce got up from her place on the couch and went to hold her “daughter”. Buffy just collapsed into tears and sobs once Joyce’s arms were around her, holding her up, holding her strong so that she could keep standing on her own. After several moments, Joyce helped Buffy clean up the mess on her arms and face.
“Well boohoo, the slayer has a rough life. Well guess what, Buffy
, you aren’t the only one to have a rough life!” Xander tried to counter-argue.
Before he could even begin however, Buffy looked up from her “mother’s” shoulder and glared at him with an intensity that could melt a cinder block. He caught it, and due his credit, he stared right back at her. “Oh what, now you’re going to slay me if I don’t shut up, well listen up slayer, you…”
“Xander, sit down.”
That single soft statement from the blonde’s lips froze him immediately. After a moment, Joyce released her and Buffy looked Xander in the eye. “I’m not going to…” <grin> “…slay you Xander. I’m going to ask that you please sit down. I have to tell you all something. Something that will…change the rest of your lives.”
“What that you aren’t the slayer, you’re just our guardian angel playing a trick on us?” Xander jested.
But Buffy was all seriousness as she returned, “No, I’m not the slayer, but I’m no angel either.” Everyone was literally floored with that. Or at least Giles and Willow were as they slid to the floor in mimed shock. Buffy wasn’t too surprised that it was Amy that asked, “Then what are you?”
She just shrugged and answered, “Typical demon hunter. The whole strength and healing thing are things I’ve picked up, not to mention a whole hell of a lot of training.”
Giles was the next to recover, “What-what do you mean you are not the slayer? You-you you have been in prophesies, you’ve stopped the apocalypse, multiple times, and you passed every one of the Watcher’s tests to determine a slayer. Buffy, what are you talking about? You are the slayer. And unfortunately, now the only one left.”
“Wrong Giles,” Buffy interrupted. “There’s at least one other slayer out there, probably being protected from the Watcher’s council and still fighting evil. I ran into her, and took her place actually. Her name was Elizabeth Summers, and she was at Hemery High, and she was the one to fight and kill Lothos. I took her place and came here with Mom. Really easy to do actually. What with Merrick being the only Watcher to have seen her, and then a punk kid that nobody would believe named Pike. I actually went to their wedding over the summer. They make a really great couple.”
“What are you saying Buffy, if that’s who you really are? You aren’t the slayer, you aren’t Buffy Summers? Then who’s ‘Mom
’?” Willow asked, very confused and trying to get logic from the data she was receiving.
Buffy smiled and went to sit by Willow, who, she was pleased, did not flinch away as she did. “Well, I am Buffy, and aside from being the slayer, being afraid of dying, and Joyce being my Mom, then yeah that’s all fake. My last name isn’t Summers, well it sort of is, until I get a new surname, but I like the name Buffy, it’s kinda uniquish, don’t ya think?”
Willow grinned at the humor that was Buffy and nodded slightly. Then she caught on to what Buffy had said and began stuttering and babbling anew. “Wait, wait a minute! Joyce…Mrs. Summers…Joyce is not your Mom? How does that work?”
Before the overwhelmed redhead could get a full head of steam, Buffy sidetracked her. “I’ll explain everything, I promise Will. But you should all know something first. Faith is alive.”
It took a full two minutes for those three hastily said words to penetrate everyone’s brains, even Oz’s. Somehow, they timed it just so that everyone shouted at once, “WHAT!!!”
Buffy stood up and then stood next to her “mother” and said loud enough, “Come on down now Faith. After all, this was your decision.” The last part was full of biting sarcasm. Everyone heard the light chuckling coming from the staircase, and then standing up, everyone watched as an angel descended the steps. Or at least they believed her to be a real angel until she came up next to Buffy and Joyce, dressed in tight blue jeans, a denim shirt, a white tank top, and gray woolen socks, minus the halo, the wings, and any to all golden glowing.
“Hey guys, how’s it hanging?” Faith asked in her Boston accented swagger. Buffy, standing next to her, elbowed her in the gut, yet didn’t turn to look at her when Faith glared at her. Shrugging, letting it go, Faith revised her greeting. “Sorry, bad choice of words. I meant, how’s life down here?” Faith openly grinned, as did Xander and Amy.