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Beacon of Hope on the Hellmouth

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Summary: Heroes transcend space and time, but some are farther from home than others. (B:tVS/City of Heroes)

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Games > Comic/Superhero > City of HeroesArthurHansenFR18322,4142134,29819 Nov 062 Feb 07No

Enter the Light.

Disclaimer: Buffy: the Vampire Slayer and City of Heroes do not belong to me. Futurias, Khel'Futurias and Nict'Futurias do, however. Not that I'm planning of using any of this professionally.

-

"They've set up a ward outside the lab!" warned Hot Stuff even as he sent a wave of fire, incinerating two Banished Pantheon undead. His flaming red hair and bright costume was covered in arcane symbols, the source of his immolating blasts.

"Tell us something useful!" Rosetta Stone yelled back. The petite girl's red and blue outfit was starting to look a bit tattered, but she was keeping most of the zombie's attention on herself and away from the weaker members of the ad-hoc super-team.

Sirenius screamed, shattering another zombie. "What are they doing with that Portal?" She was what a lot of heroes called a 'mundane' hero, as she only wore normal outfits... even if massive fights like this. Unlike all the colorful capes around her

Khel'Futurias finished smashing another zombie almost flat and looked over her shoulder, her aura flaring higher. "They are attempting to program that portal to a proscribed realm!"

Rosetta happened to notice a group of distinctive heroes, led by Statesman himself. "It's the Freedom Phalanx! They'll save the day!"

Khel'Futurias frowned. "Yes, they will!" Corona Bright Flash, I will need all of our power, now! The Kheldian Peacebringer suddenly launched herself towards into the air and towards the rotating, mechanical rings that focused massive amounts of energy to breach dimensional barriers. "Freedom Phalanx... FORWARD!" she shouted. She was a reservist, damn it! She was a hero just as much as the big guns!

DAWNSTRIKE! She mentally screamed, unleashing her tap into the nearest star with cataclysmic affect, overloading the portal and causing it to collapse in upon itself.

The zombies and shamans of the Banished Pantheon disappeared in the blinding light. When everyone could see again, all that was left of the portal was a blasted crater fifty feet wide to the shock of all the heroes present.

-

Khel'Futurias felt overwhelming pressure. In just seconds, she was going to be utterly crushed despite being able to shrug off heavy munitions! Desperately, she initiated a phase shift in her very physical structure, becoming pure bundles of quantum energy that was out of shift with all matter and energy. She wouldn't be able to maintain this form long, but she was safe for a moment. Scanning around, her ghostly eyes took in a tear in space, closed and pulsing with energy.

She flew towards it, gather her energy. With a burst of light rocketed out of the ground, right through a high school. Finally drained of energy, she arced across the sky as a flickering light that fell to the earth.

Creatures of the darkness saw that and frowned in worry. Was that a human firework... or something portentous?

-

"And honey! Try not to get kicked out?" Joyce called out to Buffy as her daughter walked towards her first day of her new school.

"I promise!" she replied back. She was still feeling slightly out of it from the dream of vampires and sparkling light.

"'Scuse me, comin' through, pardon me, 'scuse me, whoa! 'Scuse me, not sure how to stop! Please move, whoa, 'scuse me..." Xander Harris suddenly spotted the pretty and petite blonde and instantly forgot important of things like momentum and direction! "Whoa!" he cried out a foot stepped on his skateboard and deftly caught him. "Thanks!" he said, before looking up at the oddly dressed girl in front of him.

For one, she was wearing a leather jacket and leather pants. In Sunnydale, which was a bright and quite balmy place. And she was pale and very tall. Hair, eyes and skin glinted palely in the bright sun. The whole nine yards. She grinned softly. "You need to watch were you are going," she said. "You could have hurt yourself."

"Uh, thanks." Xander blinked and checked her shoes. Heavy, fairly flat boots. She was a giant, over six feet tall. "Ah, you are new? I'm Xander!"

"Alythea!" she replied absently as she focused on a piece of paper in her hands.

"Xander! Don't stare!" a female, red-haired and slightly scowling at him, said urgently.

"Oh, sorry!" Suddenly, the voice finally clicked to him. "Willow! Very much so the girl I wanted to see! I need your help!"

Willow arched an eyebrow at that. This should be interesting. "Oh?"

"I kinda had some problems with the math," he said cheekily.

"Uh, which part?" she asked, confused.

"The math! Please! Be my study buddy!" he whined cutely.

"Excuse me?" Alythea interjected.

"Oh, sorry!" Willow said. "Can I help you?"

"I'm trying to find Mr. Smith's room," she said, holding up a nearly illegible note.

-

On the chalkboard behind the teacher, large and bold words of The Black Death could be seen. " It's estimated that about twenty-five million people died in that one four-year span. But the fun part of the Black Plague is that it originated in Europe how?"

Buffy was trying to take notes, but she didn't have a class book yet.

" As an early form of germ warfare. If you'll look at the map on page sixty-three you can trace the spread of the disease into Rome, and then north..."

The retired Slayer frowned as an unusual movement caught her attention from the really tall, really pale girl sitting next to the window. She seemed to be holding her right ear. It finally dawned on Buffy where she had seen that gesture. It was what bodyguards did when they heard something on their little ear-radios in the movies. Distractedly, Buffy noted that the girl didn't even have a book or pen on her desk.

Alythea stood up. "Excuse me, teacher! I have to leave for a bit." Without waiting for a response, she headed thru the door.

"You haven't been excused!" the teacher called out, his class suddenly disrupted, but the very tall girl was already out the door. Not having anything with that, Mr. Smith headed to the door with a large scowl. He was just opening it when an incredibly loud crackling thunder boomed and light flashed in his eyes.

Girls (and a few boys) screamed in surprise, but when the teacher opened his eyes... there was nothing there.

-

"Control tower, flight 7014 is still losing power. I don't know if we are going to make it to LAX! I'm starting to get some warning lights on engine number one now!" The captain kept scanning his instruments, but nothing seemed to be working.

"Trying to restart number two!" his copilot said. Several flips and no response. "George, can you go take a look at number two and number one and see what is going on?"

The navigator nodded, starting to unbelt himself. "Sure."

Suddenly, a new female voice broke in over the radio. "Your number two engine is badly damaged. Do not attempt to start it! Repeat, do not attempt to start it!"

LAX's controller broke on the radio, "Unknown flight! You are accessing a controlled space! Clear out or you might make the problem worse."

"I am approaching from your right side! You should be able to see me... now!" Khel'Futurias said as she flew fifty feet from the right side. The copilot just stared at the young woman wearing a skin-tight white and yellow outfit with a cape, just like a comic book heroine. Some sort of incandescent energy surrounded. She gave a wave and dropped further back, circling around the plane. "Flight 7014, I am seeing small humanoids that are attacking your functional engine. Moving to clear them now!"

The navigator opened the cockpit door and headed back to the passengers that were all pointing at the left engine. The sight that greeted him was dumbfounding, as the girl was blasting things from the engine with white beams of energy from her eyes. Remembering his training, he looked over at the other engine. Blanching, he headed back to the cockpit.

"Engine number one is failing!" the captain said.

"We have a fire in engine number two!" the navigator said urgently.

"I've already cut the engine lines!" the copilot called out. "The cutoff must be stuck!"

Khel'Futurias blasted the last little reptilian from the working engine and then skimmed under the wing. She looked it over carefully for just a second and then unleashed a much larger blast and sheared the engine entirely off. The loss of the engine sent shudders through the wing even as Khel'Futurias reached into the blasted mounting and squeezed the fuel line. "I had to remove the engine. I will be right back!"

With a burst of light, she caught up to the falling engine. Energy charged into her fists as she unleashed her mightiest double-handed blow, nearly vaporizing the engine. She turned and then caught up to the plane.

It was obviously starting to lose altitude as the other engine had finally failed. With a grimace, she started pushing with more and more of her power against the back most point of the plane. "I am now applying forward thrust! You will have to tell me how much and when to cut off!" It looked like this was going to be a busy morning, Khel'Futurias thought to herself.

-

Buffy and Cordelia (and indeed, the rest of the class) were staring at the television in shock. The jet liner was sitting on the tarmac, rescue crews headed to help the people inside. But the glowing figure had already left... flying off to who knows where.

Low resolution pictures were almost useless, as energy seemed to leak off of the spandex-clad white and yellow figure. She even had a cape. Most of her outfit seemed to be made of sharp, acute angles of triangles, except for the yellow diamond on her chest.

Alythea walked into the classroom quietly, arching an eyebrow at the television. Everyone was raptly wrapped up on it and ignored her entirely.

"I would say that this is one of those era defining moments of your generation," the teacher suddenly said. "Like JFK's assassination, the Cuban Missile Crisis and the fall of the Berlin Wall, you are seeing a truly history moment. A real life super-heroic figure, just like in the comic books!"

Most of the rest of the class was spent going over the event, which was startlingly to Alythea Cole. There were no super powered heroes in this world?

Just as class was closing, the teacher gave them their new assignment, out of the class book.

"Don't forget to get your book from the library, Buffy!" Cordelia said as she walked off with a cheery wave.

"Right!" she called back.

"Do you mind if I follow you? I guess I need a book, too," Alythea said.

Buffy gave the pale girl a hard look. Something was very... off about her. She was slightly wiggy about her, but it seemed to be okay. It wasn't like the girl was a vampire, sitting under the sunlight like that... but Buffy would have sworn she wasn't human. "Sure."

Alythea smiled. "Thanks!"

"We really need to work on your fashion sense. Leather pants with buckles and a big, bulky leather jacket? That is so Mad Max!" Buffy said in complaint.

The taller girl blinked, then looked around the passing students. Most of the girls were wearing skirts or jeans and regular blouses or t-shirts. "I don't have anything similar to that. I'm not even sure how to go about getting... regular clothes."

"You, girl, need to go shopping!" the blonde said with vigor.

"Shopping?" Alythea asked in trepidation.

"I'm Buffy! Not Elizabeth, just Buffy!"

"Alythea," the taller girl replied.

"They must have given you all my 'grow tall pills'," Buffy groused. She was getting crick in her neck from looking up.

"I don't think they used pills to make me grow tall," the other girl said.

"Just a joke, Ali! We need to get you out from under that rock you've lived under!"

"Oh!"

Buffy trotted right to the library with 'Ali' in tow. "Hello! Anyone here?" she called out by the checkout counter. She glanced at the newspaper there, frowning at what she saw.

Alythea smiled as she entered. This looked like the arcane repositories for heroes of a magical bent back in Paragon City. She picked up a book on a tall shelf labeled Blood rituals: Druidic. "Hmm. Interesting," she muttered to herself.

The librarian appeared behind Buffy, tapping her on the shoulder. "Can I help you?"

Buffy spun around, obviously quite startled. "I was looking for some, well, class books. I'm new."

"Miss Summers?" he said, heading behind the counter.

"Must not be too many new kids?" she said jokingly.

He nodded in answer, "I'm Mr. Giles. The librarian. I was told you were coming." He started rummaging around behind the counter.

"Great! So, um, I'm gonna need 'Perspectives on 20th Century...'" she started to say, ticking off the books on her fingers.

"I know what you're after!" Giles interrupted with a grin. He pulled out a very large and old book, titled 'Vampyr'.

"That's not what I'm looking for," Buffy said uneasily.

"Vampire?" Alythea said as she stepped out of the shadows and picked up the book. Those creatures from last night had claimed they were vampires, but they didn't resemble the ones created by binding Nictus fragments to them like the ones back in Paragon City.

Giles looked intently at Buffy. "Are you sure?" His eyes moved quickly over to Alythea and he carefully removed a crucifix from his tweed jacket's pocket.

Alythea was quickly starting to flip pages. Hmm...

Buffy started to move back, looking concerned at Giles and Alythea. "I'm way sure."

"Buffy? Hey, wait up!" the tall girl said and she set the book down and hurried after the blonde.

Giles just stared after them. "Very unusual."

-

"- And to return this," Xander said out on the quad, holding the stake that Buffy had dropped between classes. "The only thing I can think is that you're building a really little fence!"

"Hah, no, um, a-a-actually it was for self-defense. Everyone has them in L.A. Pepper spray is just so passé," Buffy said in a not too convincing tone.

"Oh, there you are Buffy!" Alythea said as she walked over. There were two boys and a new girl by the girl. "Hello! I'm Alythea."

Willow, Xander and Jesse all introduced themselves.

"Oh, the other transfer student!" Willow exclaimed. "Don't you have any books yet?"

Alythea still only had some papers and a pen, shoved into the pocket of her black leather jacket. "No, not yet."

Cordelia suddenly walked up and interrupted, "Are these guys bothering you?" she asked in a tone that was barely not insulting.

"She's not hanging out with us!" Willow said, rolling her eyes.

"Hey, Cordelia!" Jesse said, obviously smitten with the pretty girl.

"Oh, please!" Cordelia said with an obvious roll of her eyes. She turned to Buffy. " I don't mean to interrupt your downward mobility, but I just wanted to tell you that you won't be meeting Coach Foster, the woman with the chest hair, because gym was canceled due to the extreme dead guy in the locker."

Alythea and Buffy both tensed. "What?" the exclaimed.

"What are you talking about?" Willow asked, suddenly worried.

"Some guy was stuffed in Aura's locker!" the cheerleader exclaimed.

"Dead," Buffy said, making it not quite a question.

"Totally! Way dead!" Cordelia responded.

"How did he die?" Alythea asked, looking back towards the school. So something was off about Sunnydale.

"I didn't ask! Morbid much?" Cordelia said, staring up at the very tall girl.

"Um, I gotta book. I'll, I'll see you guys later," Buffy said hurriedly. She then heads off.

"The locker room, right?" Alythea asked. At Cordelia's nod, she also walked off quickly.

-

Buffy snapped the lock to the gymnasium and carefully sidled inside. In just a moment, she is in the locker room, pulling the cloth back to see the dead boy. "Oh, great."

"It looks like he was bit," Alythea said as she walked back around the corner.

"What are you doing here?" Buffy asked, pulling out her stake.

"Checking out the dead body. Just like you," the pale girl said, nodding towards the body.

"Why do you care?" the ex-Slayer asked suspiciously.

"Because I'm worried that whatever killed him is still out there, hunting. Though I don't understand why he doesn't have any blood," Alythea said.

"He must have been drained. The vampire drank his blood," Buffy said morbidly.

"Vampires drink blood?" the taller girl asked. "Isn't that sort of conspicuous?"

"Whatever. I need to chat with Mr. Book Guy. I'll see you later," Buffy said and walked off.

Alythea cocked her head slightly sideways. She wasn't quite sure what Buffy meant there. But it was fairly obvious that she knew more about the situation than she was willing to explain. With a thought, Alythea phased her form out of synch with reality and floated right through the roof.

-

Later that night, Buffy has her foot on a strange man's neck as he lay on his back in an alleyway. He'd been following her, but she had tricked him and then sent him sprawling.

“Is there a problem?” the man on the ground asked glibly.

Suddenly, the alley filled with white-blue light. "Yes, is there a problem?" Khel'Futurias was floating in the air, here white and yellow cape fluttered in the wind.

"Stalker stalking got ambushed by stalkeree," Buffy explained with a casual shrug.

"Excuse me?" the floating figure said. "You speak very strangely, Buffy."

Buffy raised an eyebrow at that. "Excuse me? Do I know you?"

The energy crackle dies down a bit. Khel'Futurias looks at Buffy worriedly. "You are Buffy Summers, right?" she queried.

"Ali?" the blonde said with eyes wide in shock.

"Right!" Khel'Futurias suddenly looked around. "Oh, that guy snuck off. Why were you threatening him, anyways?"

"Because he was stalking me," Buffy complained. "I thought he might have been... something that meant to attack me."

"Oh, you mean like the vampires? I've had to deal with a few already, but they are getting better at spotting me flying around," the hero said with a shrug.

"You've been dealing with the vampires?" Buffy asked. "I should introduce you to watcher-in-tweed librarian!"

"I don't understand what you mean there. You are very confusing," the tall girl said.

"Where you born on an alien planet?" Buffy complained.

"I wasn't created on any planet!"

The ex-Slayer blinked and swallowed. "Do I want to know? No, this totally normal person does not want to know about weird things. She's just going to take herself and go dancing!"

Khel'Futurias scratched her head. Had she insulted her new friend. "Go dancing?"

"Something you are so not dressed to go. While spandex isn't bad, a full white and yellow bodysuit is not dance wear!" Buffy explained, shaking her head at the comic book style outfit, cape and all.

"Oh. I've got that outfit I was wearing earlier. Serge said it was to 'show people I'm mean and sexy'. I don't think it makes me mean though," the taller girl said. With a mental command, the outfit sparkled and suddenly she was standing in her biker leathers again. "Easy to change. That's the only, er, normal clothing I have though."

"Now how do I get clothing like that?" Buffy asked with a grin.

"No idea, sorry." Alythea turned and started floating off the ground.

"Well, I'm headed over to the Bronze. I guess it's this club that the younger crowd hangs out! I'll see you there!" Buffy said as she turned. She accidentally sent a small box skidding.

"The Bronze? Okay!" and with that, Khel'Futurias zoomed off into the air.

-

A frustrating ten minutes later after not finding any muggers or vampires, Khel'Futurias was flying overhead and saw the sign for The Bronze. With a shrug, she phased right through the wall by the bathrooms. She landed easily and with a sparkle, changed her outfit into the faux leathers again. She headed down the hall towards the music.

There were so many people that she was starting to feel a bit claustrophobic almost immediately, causing her to frown. She was starting to wander aimlessly through the crowd when a young male roughly grabbed her elbow. "What are you doing here?" he snarled.

"Um, meeting someone?" she replied inanely, eyes wide in surprise.

"We are here at the behest of the Master. Don't get in our way... or else!" he warned, then turned back to the crowd and walked off.

Alythea frowned. She was definitely missing something. Who was this master?

"Oh! Hello!" Willow called out near the bar. "You’re Alythea, right?"

She nodded in response. "Willow, right?" Alythea looked over the noisy room of dancing kids. "Is this some sort of exercise?"

"Um, no. Not really. It's just fun."

"Oh. I've been told I have problems with fun," she replied with no attempt at humor.

Willow laughed. Her laugh turned strained as she realized that other girl might not have been joking. "Well, I'm going to take some advice from Buffy!" She squared her shoulders and walked out onto the dance floor.

Buffy must be here, Alythea thought. She started looking around more thoroughly. She squinted in the poor light. Should she light up the area? No, it appears to be dark on purpose, so that would be rude. Wait, maybe back towards where she had entered. "Buffy?" Alythea said as he got closer, following her towards the back door. She was startled as Buffy grabbed her by the throat and slammed her up against the wall. Energy crackled over her skin defensively.

"Oh, sorry, Ali!" Buffy exclaimed.

Cordelia just happened to be walking out of the bathroom to see Buffy, a very normal-seeming yet hip girl, holding a glowing-eyed figure up against a wall. She blinked. Rubbed her eyes and blinked again. "I did not just see the newest and trendiest person to hit town do what I just saw, did I?" she asked querulously.

"Um, nope," Buffy stammered, hastily letting Alythea go. The white-haired girl looked at Buffy in confusion, but then nodded even as her eyes faded. The ex-Slayer suddenly piped up, "Hey, have you seen Willow? Did she come by here?"

"Planning on clubbing her so she learns some fashion sense?" Cordelia asked, arching an eyebrow at the sharply broken off wooden chair-leg in Buffy's hand.

Buffy at least had the presence of mind to blush at that. "Um, nope." She headed back into the club and away from the women's bathroom, Alythea trailing behind.

Cordelia immediately started to pull out her cell phone, ignoring her followers.

Giles found Buffy in the middle of the throng of dancers. "That *was* quick. Well done!" He spared a quick glance at the tall young woman trailing behind Buffy with a bemused expression. Whatever she was, she wasn't a vampire from her total lack of reaction back in the library to his cross. "I I-I need to go to the library. This Harvest thing..."

"I didn't find them!" Buffy huffed. "Just the Jolly White Giantess."

Giles grabbed her arm. "The vampire is not dead?"

"Why are you looking for this vampire?" Alythea asked curiously. Was being a vampire illegal. That would be very racist if that were the case.

Buffy whirled on the taller girl. "Look, that vampire just took off with Willow, thinking she is snackable. We have to save her before anything bad happens!"

"What should we do?" Giles asked.

"I'll take care of it!" Buffy snapped out, even as she started to walk out.

Alythea followed. "Want someone to watch your back? I'll follow your lead."

Buffy spun, looking up into very pale blue eyes. "Fine." A super hero wouldn't hurt. And she was just being backup. That made sense. She was so caught up she didn't even notice Darla speaking to Jesse as she stomped on by on their way out.

Soon they were outside, looking quickly for the mousy red-head. Buffy then spotted Xander just as he spotted her.

"Hey, you're leaving already?" he asked, worried that the girl he was already smitten with was taking off for the night.

Buffy and Alythea were still scanning around. "Oh, Xander! Have you seen Willow?"

"Not tonight, no." He looked confused.

"She left with a guy."

Xander looked totally flabbergasted. "We're talking about Willow, right?" He started grinning over his friend's sudden success. "Scorin' at the Bronze, work

it girl..."

"She is in deadly danger. We need to find her now before she is killed by the vampire that is kidnapping her!" Alythea interrupted bluntly.

Buffy and Xander just looked at her in total shock. Buffy because you just didn't do it like that, Xander because it was just so out of left field, even after all the things he'd been starting to piece together about the strange girl from L.A.

"Where would she go?"

-

Buffy opened the door to the crypt, glass diffracting the dim light into it. She just walked brazenly into it like she was the owner. "Well, this is nice. I-it's a little bare, but a dash of paint, a

few throw pillows... call it home!" she finished with a sniff, running her finger along the sarcophagus's lid.

Alythea gave Xander a confused look, as if to ask, 'Is this how it is supposed to happen?'

Darla snarled, her vampiric countenance twisted in anger. "Who the hell are you?"

The Slayer looked relieved. "You mean there's actually someone in this town who doesn't know already? Whew, that's a relief, I'm telling you! Having a secret identity in this town is a job of work."

"Wouldn't that work better if you wore a mask?" Alythea asked curiously, but she was smiling at the banter. You could always tell that the situation was under control when the heroes joked around. Well, most of the time. There were a few heroes that joked even when they were being eviscerated and about to die.

Xander just gave the tall albino a very weirded out look. "Shouldn't we be bailing?"

"Nope. Not yet," the male vampire said with a twisted grin.

"Now, we can do this the hard way, or... well, actually there's just the hard way," Buffy was nattering on, but her eyes were quite focused.

"That's fine with me!" Darla snarled out.

Darla and Thomas were moving to surround Buffy, when Alythea shouted out, "Behind you!" and then blasted out startlingly bright-white eyebeams at the vampire behind Buffy, sending him flying and slamming him into a wall that cracked from the force.

"It burns like sunlight!" he whimpered.

"Thanks, Ali! Appreciate it!" Buffy called out while grinning, even as she pulled out a stake a stabbed it into Darla while the vampiress was distracted. Darla had just a moment to shriek before she exploded into dust.

The vampire, Thomas, just stared in shock. Darla had been stronger than him! His eyes started to dart around frantically.

"A stick explodes vampires into dust? I had to work a lot harder to defeat those two from last night when they attacked me!" Alythea whined. Was it a special stick? No, Buffy had just broken it off a chair at the club.

"I need another stake!" Buffy realized aloud. The last stake had dusted with the vampire.

Thomas made a dash for the door, startling Willow to scream and knocking over Xander in his haste. White energy congealed around Alythea's fist, even as she slammed it into his stomach and sent him flying back.

"Ahhh! It burns! It burns!" he shrieked as he frantically made sure he wasn't on fire.

"All yours, Ali!" Buffy catcalled.

"Okay then," the heroine replied. Both hands were glowing, even as she unleashed a much larger blast, hoping to incapacitate the vampire. Instead, he shrieked for just a moment before catching on fire, then exploded into dust.

"Way to go girl!" the Slayer cried out in glee. "I so need to get some of that mojo!"

"You aren't upset that I killed him?" Alythea asked in confusion.

"He was a people eating corpse. It was definitely of the good that he's no longer around in the land of the living or unliving!" she replied.

"Jesse!" Willow said worriedly, shaking the nearly comatose boy. Xander moved over. "That girl said she'd snacked on him."

Suddenly all business, Buffy moved over and checked on him. "He should be fine, if we can get him to a hospital."

"Stand aside, please," Alythea asked pleasantly. When they did, she raised her hand again, sending a beam of white light that struck Buffy who stepped into the way.

"Wait! You can't kill him! And I should so be hurting instead of feeling better and I think I had no idea what you were doing," Buffy babbled on, lost in her train of thoughts.

"I was actually healing him by re-adjusting his quantum energy biorhythms. I should have warned you first, I guess," the foreign heroine explained with a small grin. When Buffy stepped out of the way, she sent out the light, healing him again. "Is that better?" she asked Jesse.

"Uh, yeah. I just feel a little hungry," Jesse replied while rubbing his neck.

"Well, I don't know about the rest of you, but I so want out of here and leave this creepy place out of my mind!" Willow said in a whiny voice.

"I agree with the really smart red-head. On with the vamoosing!" Xander agreed with a only slightly less shocked voice.

They all trooped up the cramped stairs and into the night. As they were leaving, Luke watched them from the shadows. The Master would want to know of this immediately. This pale girl with the white light was totally out of his experience.

The quintet of kids were suddenly surrounded by four more vampires, already with their game face on. Willow and Xander both shrieked, while Buffy was starting to get really worried. Six vampires? Sunnydale was looking like it was incredibly infested with the undead.

Alythea reacted by suddenly charging her body fully, eyes exploding with white light. Energy crackled under her right foot, even as she raised it up. With a blinding flash of light, she stomped the ground hard enough to trigger an explosion of white energy, sending the two vampire in front of her flying to crash into headstones over thirty feet way. She whirled and lifted off into the air with a crackle. "I won't let you hurt these kids!" she thundered.

The two remaining vampires spared a quick glance at each other, then did the smartest thing they could, by taking off and running. Buffy was sprinting after the one on the left, even as she called out, "Don't let them get away!" The Slayer then threw herself into a full body tackle, sending her and the vampire sprawling over the graves.

The second one just looked over his shoulder to see the crazy glowing girl charging at him, her whole body glowing like she was on fire with white energy. He zigged at the last second, trying to stay out of her reach. Two searing fists smashed into his back. With a shriek, the vampire exploded into dust.

Buffy rolled to her feet and up to a tree. With her Slayer strength, she snapped a branch off and then jammed it into the remaining vampires' chest, with the typical reaction. She slapped her legs to knock some of the dust off of her.

"She's the super hero that saved that plane at LAX," Jesse exclaimed.

"Correct!" Alythea said as she landed next to them.

Buffy walked over, then narrowed her eyes in thought. "So why are you going to Sunnydale High School?" she asked suspiciously.

"Oh! She's undercover and investing Mr. Flutie for being part of some evil conspiracy!" Willow exclaimed.

"Um, actually, I was just told by a police officer yesterday morning that all children under the age of seventeen are supposed to go to school. That isn't true? He escorted me over and told me to go or he'd call my parents," she finally replied, looking very confused.

Xander started laughing. "Oh, too funny! Old Man Loyd snagged himself a super-hero that he thought was truant!"

Jesse just smirked. "So you just followed his orders? Girl, we have got to teach you about real life."

Buffy was thinking the same thing. "So what brought you to Sunnydale?"

"Oh, that? An interdimensional portal that I had to collapse to save Paragon City last night. It's put me right under the High School, actually."

"I always knew school was evil! Ha, take that Willow!" Jesse catcalled.

"School isn't evil!" Willow argued.

"Yes it is!" Xander retorted. "I mean, even you think Mr. Flutie is evil!"

"You don't have any place to go, do you?" Buffy finally asked, cutting off the three friends bickering about school and its evils.

"No, not really. But I never really have had any place of my own. The closest I've ever had was Paragon City, helping protect it from fanatic militias, killer robots, homicidal cults and insane gods." She shrugged. "I really don't need much anyways."

"Um," Buffy said. She couldn't just offer her the couch. Her mother would freak and think that Ali was being a bad influence. Especially dressed in those leather pants and a mesh-shirt with a biker-jacket on top.

"Let's get someplace safer for right now," Alythea suggested.

-

After leaving them at the library so that Buffy could talk to Giles, Khel'Futurias floated up into the sky wearing her skin-tight yellow and white super hero uniform, cape flapping in the wind. Before she'd found Buffy this evening, she'd run into a few people that had complained about where was she when the big problems of the world were happening. That was when she had found out about some truly horrifying things that had happened because there were no heroes that could stop them. She had put off dealing with them for long enough.

She inputed the coordinates for the first location. Maybe she could help clean up those messes, even if she couldn't save the lives and damage caused by them. Luckily the GPS system matched the one in Paragon City.

-

Deep in the bowels of the earth, blood bubbled as an ancient vampire rose straight out of its depths, eerily unblemished by the crimson liquid that sustained him and would eventually free him. Torchlight flickered in the rippling liquid.

"Master! Something has interfered with our hunt. Something I don't know at all!" Luke said, bowing deeply. His vampiric nature was visible, due to his great fear.

"What do you mean, Luke?" the Master asked, his voice cold and harsh.

"It was a girl, more pale than even a vampire. But she burned with white light and destroyed your servants. She even killed Darla." Luke knew that Darla was sometimes a favored servant of the Master. "And there is another girl. She appears normal, but she is strong and fast. She knew how to destroy us by staking with wood."

"If an angel treads the lands, then the treaties with the Powers may be broken." The Master suddenly grinned. "The days of the animal may be over far sooner than I thought if certain of the Old Ones take notice of this."

"And that can't be allowed," a new voice called out.

"A balance demon," the Master noted aloud, quite surprised. "What are you doing here?"

"I'm just letting you know that the Powers That Be have not broken the balance. The Slayer is their instrument, the interloper will be dealt with," the man said.

"Who are you?" Luke demanded.

"No one important. You can call me Whistler. The being will be removed tonight and returned to their realm." The Balance Demon looked upset and worried.

"And why tell me this?" the Master asked.

"Just to set the record straight. This person is a rogue and will be dealt with. The Powers That Be will stand ready to face any incursion against anyone from beyond," he said, staring at the Master intently.

The Master sized him up and with what he knew of such things. He then turned to Luke. "The time of The Harvest is approaching. We must be prepared to deal with this second girl you mentioned."

Luke snatched his gaze away from Whistler. "Master? Of course. But the-" he said, looking back to see that the Balance Demon was gone already.

-

Khel'Futurias floated back over Sunnydale, feeling a little giddy from the radiation she'd absorbed from that radioactive disaster area in Russia. The sun was just starting to crest the mountains to the far off east. Sudden, bright flashes of yellow exploded in the grounds near the school, leaving bright burning flares behind. She zoomed off and say a man casually walking among the lights. He seemed to squint up at her and then waved.

Khel'Futurias landed in front of him, even if she felt that something was off about this situation. "Yes? Can I help you?" she asked.

"Yes. You can go back to your own realm and not muck up this world! You are upsetting delicate balances here, girl!" Whistler said harshly. "You Celistins are not supposed to come to this world and you know it! You are breaking very important treaties."

"I am no Celistins." Her voice suddenly shifted. "We are not of this reality and are not bound from helping the lesser races by any treaty, no matter what world they reside upon!" her Kheldian essence, Corona Bright Flash, said directly, something it did not do lightly. There was much prejudice against creatures that melded with humans in Paragon City.

"Well, I'm sorry you feel that way. Luckily, but we took steps to remove you. The Powers are loathe to use the Hell Mouth, but it is the only way to deal with this problem," the Balance Demon said, even as a large sigil of an arcane nature burst into light around Khel'Futurias in the field of short-cropped grass.

She suddenly realized that she'd landed right where he'd wanted, just like some brand new hero off an airplane. "Damn it!" she cried out, even as she threw herself against a barrier, a barrier that was far harder than steel!

"The more you fight it, the more it will hurt! We are just sending you back where you came from, before you came through the Hell Mouth," Whistles said conversationally. It wasn't very often that the Powers interfered this directly.

"You are sentencing us to death! We had to escape that realm before the energies there destroyed us!" Khel'Futurias said, even as her charged-up fists struck sparks off the barrier.

"That's a shame, but doesn't really change what has to happen. The whole world teeters on the edge of a war you can't comprehend," he argued back.

He was a fanatic, she realized. She only had moments to act to save herself. She still had too much to live for! So many innocents to atone for that she had killed back when she'd been under the sway of Epochius! "I won't go into the dark quietly!" she yelled out, reaching deep into her psyche and essence, using her anger as a tightly wound weapon. Light burst from within her, like a fragment of a star suddenly unleashed on the surface of the planet.

Whistler staggered back as the ground shook slightly, suddenly worried even as he shielded his eyes from the impossible light coming from the girl. How much power did she have?

Khel'Futurias suddenly blasted everything she had into the ground below her with all her might. Then with every erg of her being she clenched that energy up to her chest with her fists and then released it all in one stupendous burst.

The mystical barrier that Whistler had prepared held for one agonizing moment, before shattering like a soap bubble. Most of the force was directed up into the sky or down into the ground, carving a huge crater into the lawn.

The Balance Demon had already departed. He wanted nothing to do with someone that could break that ward.

All that was left was a terribly drained and weakened heroine, collapsed and unconscious.
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