Everything either belongs to Joss or it should, no infringement is intended and no profit is to be made. When you get right down to it I’m not really worth suing anyway unless you want a share of an underpaid civil servants wages and it just wouldn’t be worth the hassle trust me.Vampire Lair – Sunnydale - May 2003
It was the apocalypse.
Not so much in the conventional human sense of the word but the demons certainly thought so, at least they did locally. Stories were being told about that night by demon clans for decades afterwards right around the world.
As night fell with a blazing red sunset, approximately three dozen slayers buzzing with their new abilities, and with varying degrees of training, headed out looking for trouble in a town that was brimming with it, it didn’t really take them too long to find it either.
The door to the lair burst open, and the vampires within turned and hissed, eyes blazing yellow and teeth bared in challenge at the four teenage girls that entered. ‘Guess what boys and girls’ one told them. ‘It’s Slayerfest 2003 and you’re all invited’ she declared, holding up a machined wooden stake that had been specially turned on a lathe to fit her hand perfectly.
A vampire glared back. ‘Slayer’ it growled redundantly.
, plural’ the girl responded. ‘The rules have changed and it's not
a good day to be a vampire’ she announced.
‘Into every generation a multitude of slayers are born’ another added, aiming a crossbow. ‘We’re rewriting history from now on’ she said with a predatory grin of her own.
The vamps didn't know what hit them.Office Parking Lot – Sunnydale – May 2003
The Boretz Demon ran for its life across the deserted parking lot, legs pumping as hard as they could, panting for breath. It didn’t get very far, the two fifteen year olds chasing it could hit nearly thirty miles an hour flat out and one tackled it just before it could reach the other side of the lot, bringing it slamming down to the ground, hard.
Still breathing heavily from the chase herself, it had lasted nearly a mile, the other slayer immediately and ruthlessly, smashed its brains out all over the asphalt with a heavy mace. It was a messy but highly effective move and as she helped the first slayer up the Boretz was twitching, the part of the demon that controlled its higher brain functions being pulp on the ground but its primitive nervous system still firing uselessly. The girl that had tackled it slammed her short-sword into its back, chopping through its spinal column to finish the job properly.
They dragged the beast away and threw it into a dumpster, off in the distance to the south they could hear police sirens. Plenty more work to do tonight they thought happily.Main Street – Sunnydale – May 2003
‘It won’t die’ a policeman screamed to his partner, emptying his service revolver into the creature. They had answered a call about a monster terrorising the centre of town and had screeched up in their patrol car to find an eight-foot tall demon, an actual demon
with horns and everything, feeding on a person it had nearly ripped in two. It was covered in gore and rose to challenge them with blood dripping from teeth and claws as the bullets bounced off its scaly hide.
‘Bullets won’t hurt it’ a young girl told them, walking past the Cop. ‘You need to chop its head off’ she informed him nonchalantly hefting a battleaxe that looked bigger than she was.
‘Go and get yourself some doughnuts we’ll deal with this jerk’ another girl told the incredulous police officer confidently as the two girls strode purposefully towards the massive creature. ‘That head will look great mounted on a wall’ she suggested to her friend as they circled the demon before moving to the attack.Late Night Diner – Sunnydale - May 2003
The lone M’Fashnik Demon reached across the counter and grabbed the waitress on the other side by her uniform. Unlike many clans his was known for more conventional criminal activity as well as ordinary demonic fiendishness and was into extortion, robbery and myriad other kinds of anti-social behaviour.It was surprising how rewarding robbing a diner at night could be and the M'Fashnik was hoping for a big score that could get him into the next kitten-poker night.
‘Oi dickhead’ a young girl with a British accent called across to him from a few tables away. The M’Fashnik turning to look at the source of the challenge, baring its teeth.
Eight vampire slayers, that had come to the Diner for some late refreshment after a hard couple of hours crusading against the forces of darkness, looked back at him from where they sat around adjacent tables. One of them calmly took another bite from her cream doughnut while another was still forking apple-pie into her mouth as the demon wondered what the hell was going on.
‘This could very well be the unluckiest son-of-a-bitch on the face of the Earth’ one of the slayers suggested seriously, the others nodding in complete agreement as they got up as a group.Summers Residence – Sunnydale – May 2003
Connor slumped into a chair. ‘I think I’m getting old’ he moaned, getting comfortable. ‘I was burned out by 4AM trying to keep up with them but they just kept right on going’ he announced.
‘Hark at Methuselah’ Spike responded, pointing at the youth. ‘Kids these days’ he continued. ‘No stamina.’
‘Well I didn’t see you
out there’ Connor retorted.
Spike made a dismissive sound. ‘Got more brains than to try and keep up with a load of brand new teenage slayers most of which are also on a sugar and caffeine rush after emptying the high-school snack machines’ he said.
‘Well who was it that gave them the money for that?’ Connor asked, turning towards his father with a disaproving look.
Angel coughed awkwardly. ‘Well I gave one of them a couple of bucks to get a soda’ he said, ‘and then they all started nagging so…’
‘Just can’t say no to a pretty face can you?’ Dawn asked Angel with a grin whist handing Connor a glass of milk which he took gratefully. The first groups of weary newbie slayers had started to return about a quarter of an hour ago, wanting either sleep or breakfast and Dawn had been woken by the noise. It was barely six in the morning, damn potentials, nope she thought correcting herself damn slayers
‘There were dozens of them and they could all kick my ass’ Angel pointed out defensively. ‘It was pure self preservation.’
‘Yeah right’ Spike retorted dismissively. ‘Where did Blue end up anyhow?’ he asked.
‘Her and Wes left before Willow activated the potentials remember’ Dawn replied. ‘Maybe they went patrolling?’ she suggested.
‘Or maybe he took her somewhere for a good shagging?’ Spike joked. ‘If he turns up with a fractured pelvis she went on top.’
‘Spike!’ Angel growled as Dawn giggled.
‘Oh come on she looks like a goer’ Spike opined. ‘It might even improve her people skills’ he said to Angel. ‘He’ll do what you tell him. Go on, tell him to take one for the team’ he encourage him. ‘I mean, give her one for the team’ he corrected himself with a laugh.
‘That’s enough Spike’ Angel told him coldly.
‘What’s the worst that could happen?’ Spike asked.
‘Little Blue haired Wesley look-alikes?’ Dawn theorised, causing Connor to burst out laughing.
Angel turned to address Dawn. ‘Don’t encourage him’ he told her then raised his hands to indicate the conversation needed to stop immediately, he’d heard someone arriving that it would be best didn’t overhear it.
‘Good morning’ Wesley greeted them. ‘I went over to the mansion but you weren’t there’ he told Angel.
‘He’s not walking funny’ Connor noted, holding back the laughter more successfully than Dawn who cracked up.
Wesley looked at them with a puzzled expression. ‘I’m sorry?’ he asked in confusion.
‘So where have you been?’ Spike asked him.
‘He has been with me all night’ Illyria told the vampire, interrupting from behind Wesley before stepping forward to stand next to him.
Spike turned to Connor. ‘Now you see there’s stamina for you’ he told him deadpan.
‘Is there something going on?’ Wesley asked suspiciously.
‘That’s what we’ve
been wondering’ Dawn replied, giggling.
Angel looked at his friend. ‘They’re just being stupid’ he told them. ‘Spike made a crack about you and Illyria being involved.’
‘With what?’ Wesley queried.
‘Each other’ Angel told him. ‘Spike’s idea of a joke’ he explained, with a shake of the head.
Illyria looked at Spike. ‘What’s supposed to be funny about that?’ she demanded to know.
Spike chuckled. ‘Sorry Love’ he replied. ‘I know you don’t get humour too well.’
‘It’s just a silly notion’ Dawn told her, still giggling.
‘No it isn’t’ Illyria snapped back angrily. ‘Tell them it’s not silly’ she demanded of Wesley whose eyes widened.
‘We’re not actually…um’ Wesley began half-heartedly.
‘Tell them it’s not silly’ Illyria repeated forcefully.
Wesley flinched. ‘It’s not silly’ he said. ‘But we’re not’ he added quickly, ‘not involved I mean.’
‘Yet!’ Illyria added herself, glaring at everyone in the room in turn.
Angel blinked then looked at Spike quizzically. ‘I was just being funny honest’ Spike told him. ‘Bloody hell’ he exclaimed, looking at Wesley and Illyria. ‘And people make comments about a vampire and a slayer getting it on.’
“getting it on” Spike’ Wesley told him curtly.
’ Illyria once again added, directing her glare on Wesley now. It was bloody unnerving, he thought, the glacial blue within blue looked right through you. ‘Are you ashamed of me?’ she asked furiously but with a hint of distress there too for good measure.
Wesley would have given up his best dagger and ten favourite books to have a portal open up beneath him and take him to a nice friendly hell dimension right at that moment. ‘Of course not’ he replied. ‘But we’re really not
involved’ he pointed out. ‘I wasn’t lying or being evasive.’
The God-King narrowed her eyes, she was getting extremely annoyed now. ‘Tell them we might
’ she told him darkly.
Spike was caught between sympathy for the poor bloke and the urge to laugh his head off. It reminded him of the times he’d managed to annoy Drusilla. Hell really doth hath no fury like a woman scorned, he thought.
Wesley blinked. ‘We might
be’ he admitted. Where was that bloody portal he wondered as his eyes met those of Angel who was looking at him with raised eyebrows.
Illyria crossed her arms. ‘Does anyone wish to comment?’ she asked everyone sternly.
The room was deadly silent. There were a number of new slayers dotted around listening with interest now too. One thing about this life, if you didn't get the action there was usually a soap opera on the other channel, or in the other room anyhow.
‘I am working at the school this morning and have to be in early to prepare an experiment’ Illyria said, turning to Wesley. ‘You will pick me up from there at lunchtime’ she told him then to his surprise she kissed him on the cheek before heading off with a superior air.
Wesley could feel many pairs of eyes regarding him intently. ‘Well that was awkward’ he said eventually.
Angel took a step forward. ‘Wes can we have a quiet word?’ he asked in such a way as to ensure than “no” wasn’t a viable answer.
Something occurred to Spike and he turned to Dawn and Connor. ‘I've just got to check something’ he said. ‘You two aren’t… are you?’ he asked.
‘No’ Dawn responded quickly.
‘Good’ Spike replied with relief. ‘I was just wondering because I was making jokes about that yesterday and I thought I’d turned psychic or something’ he said.
‘What kind of jokes?’ Connor demanded to know.Shadow Valley Vineyards – May 2003
Vi yawned then apologised. ‘Long night’ she told Wesley ‘only got a couple of hours sleep.’
‘Enjoying your new status as a full-blown slayer?’ Wesley asked with a smile.
Vi smiled back. ‘Doesn’t suck’ she told him.
Wesley chuckled. ‘Watch your language young lady’ he responded in jest then handed her a loaded pistol. ‘Don’t squeeze the trigger too hard’ he advised. ‘It’s not just bad for the aim you might bend it now’ he warned semi-seriously.
The red haired slayer grinned and aimed the pistol, firing off a couple of shots down-range. ‘The recoil feels like a water-pistol now’ she told him.
Wesley nodded. ‘I thought it might’ he replied. ‘Burn off the magazine and try this instead’ he told her, taking a much larger pistol out of his equipment satchel and laying it on a empty wine barrel.
Vi emptied the nine-millimetre automatic in a flurry of well placed shots and swapped handguns for the larger one. It was a bit too big for her hand but it felt much sturdier.
‘Desert Eagle .357 Magnum’ Wesley told her. ‘With your slayer strength you could probably handle a .44 or a .50 calibre easily enough but the magazines hold less shots and the .357 cartridge has already well over half again as much muzzle energy as that nine millimetre you were using’ he said. ‘Try her out.’
Vi raised the oversized pistol, it looked even larger in her small hand. She aimed at the target and squeezed the trigger gently. The supersonic report of the handgun was far louder than that of the pistol she’d been using before and the recoil noticeably harsher, though still puny compared to her new slayer strength.
Wesley watched her place shots into the target. ‘I’m impressed as ever’ he told her. ‘It’s always the quiet ones’ he joked as she fired the handgun again.
‘It’s just too damn big’ she said sadly, finishing off the magazine and putting the Desert Eagle down again.
Wesley nodded his agreement. ‘That’s why I don’t carry one myself’ he said. ‘It would ruin the cut of anything I was wearing. Try this instead’ he suggested, offering yet another pistol. ‘GLOCK 31 chambered in the .357 SIG cartridge’ he told her. ‘Not quite
as powerful as the Eagle but it’s less bulky, you get at least fifteen shots in a magazine and it still hits with a lot more punch than most pistols. Empty that thing into a demon and it’ll know about it trust me.’
Vi looked at him then the growing number of automatics on top of the barrel. ‘Do you like collect
these things?’ she asked.
‘The Eagle was mine, I took it from a demon actually, long story, but I got the other one for you specially’ Wesley replied. ‘It seemed a good choice. If it works out well I was thinking it would make a useful backup weapon for any Slayers who aren’t totally incompetent with a handgun. Powerful cartridge, large magazine but still not oversized.’
The slayer picked up the black pistol. It was surprisingly light and much slimmer than the one she had just tried. ‘You’re using me as a test subject?’ she asked.
Wesley grinned. ‘I wouldn’t necessarily use the phrase “lab rat” to anyone carry a loaded pistol but yes you’re the only one who can already shoot well enough to be a test case as it were’ he confirmed.
Despite her activation Vi was still basically a shy, reserved girl at heart and she was a bit taken aback by the attention. Wesley had decided to take her under his wing as his pet project in bringing the use of weaponry by slayers beyond the medieval stage. A sword or a crossbow had their place but supersonic lead could be a persuasive tool. It was pure luck that he had a slayer available who he wasn’t going to need a few months to teach to shoot properly first.
She just didn’t look the part though he admitted privately to himself, looking at her woollen hat which was currently being worn underneath a bulky set of ear protectors that looped over her head, not the ideal image he decided. ‘Lets see you have a go then’ Wesley told her. Vi raising the weapon and starting to fire the latest handgun down the range.
Wesley let her fire off another two magazines then called a halt as someone else arrived. ‘Good morning Stephen’ he told the watcher trainee. ‘Ready for your lesson?’ he asked, passing him a shotgun.
Stephen looked at it appreciatively. ‘Not exactly what we used on pheasant back home’ he noted of the pump-action.
‘Bigger game here’ Wesley responded, indicating the cardboard box full of 12-gauge buckshot Stephen should load it with.Crawford Street Mansion – Sunnydale – May 2003
‘Wesley and Illyria are what
?’ Cordelia asked in astonishment.
Angel shrugged. ‘I think they’re sort of seeing each other, but I also think it’s more Illyria’s idea than his’ he told them.
Gunn leaned back against a wall. He was wondering if English had decided to redirect his feelings for Fred elsewhere, or in reality to an “elsewhere” that looked exactly like Fred, except for the blue thing of course. It wasn’t that long ago that he and Wes had come to blows over Fred ,and for that matter it hadn’t ever been sorted out exactly what the situation was between the three of them. So much had happened in the meantime it had just got pushed further and further back the agenda and seemed so trivial by comparison to eveything else going on.
‘They’re not sleeping together are they?’ Fred asked, slightly disturbed by the implications of that.
‘No’ Angel replied. ‘That I’d have known’ he said, tapping his nose.
‘Good’ Cordelia replied. ‘And ewww with the smell thing by the way’ she added. ‘So what are we going to do about it?’ she asked.
‘How exactly is it our business?’ Angel queried in response. ‘I was just getting you up to speed before you heard from Connor… or worse Spike.’
‘He’s our friend that’s why it’s our business’ Cordelia told him. ‘It can’t be healthy’ she said.
‘Step up from Lilah if you ask me’ Gunn observed. ‘Well she is’ he declared. ‘Blue may be mean but I don’t look at her and see evil, just mean like I said. Hell we’ve got a lot of mean ourselves’ he opined.
‘At least Lilah was human’ Cordelia responded. ‘Not the best representative of our species but she was
Angel pointed to himself. ‘Part demon here’ he noted. ‘And so are you thanks to the Powers-That-Be’ he reminded her.
Cordelia scowled at him. ‘I may be a teeny bit demony’ she admitted. ‘But compared to Illyria
?’ she said incredulously, ‘Let’s get some perspective on this’ she insisted.
‘She gives other demons the heeby jeebies’ Fred reminded them. ‘I mean I’m starting to like her and all but she does.’
‘Well what’s the worst that could happen?’ Gunn asked.
‘Wesley’s spine in a trophy cabinet?’ Cordelia replied rhetorically. ‘We’re not just talking heartbreak here bucko’ she added seriously.
‘She wouldn’t hurt him’ Angel said with some confidence. ‘From what I saw she could guilt or maybe intimidate him a bit but not hurt. If anything I think she loves him based on her reactions’ he said.
‘How could she love
him?’ Cordelia asked. ‘We don’t even know if she’s got a soul or anything remotely like one?’
‘You don’t need a soul for love’ Angel replied. ‘I know that from personal experience and just look at Spike for God's sake’ he continued. ‘I’m not sure if he might actually be less
ruled by his heart now he’s got a soul than he was before’ he said. ‘You should have seen the way he fawned over Drusilla’ he added, rolling his eyes to the ceiling with the often cloying memories.
‘We should put a stop to it right now’ Cordelia declared.
‘We shouldn’t, and we won’t
do a damn thing’ Angel responded sharply. ‘If they do get involved with each other and it falls apart we pick up the pieces, and if it works out somehow we will
be happy for them’ he said. ‘He’s a grown adult and she’s not exactly underage herself.’
‘If it goes wrong the “pieces” could be red and squishy’ Cordelia retorted.
‘Don’t get involved Cordy’ Angel told her. ‘Please just leave them be’ he asked of her.
Cordelia sighed. ‘If I see one sign that she’s going to hurt him in any way I’m going to beat the bits of her that aren’t already blue the same colour’ she declared.
‘See’ Gunn interjected. ‘Like I said before, mean
’ he told the group.