This fifth chapter was supposed to be School Hard from beginning to the end, but sadly as I continuted to write and write I discovered if I didn't break it up it was going to go on way too long for one of my chapters and might alienate some of my readers. Even though I don't know if anyone is still interested in seeing the outcome of this. I had hoped to work on multiple stories at once, but with everything else I want to get finished aside from writing that may not be as possible as I hoped. So I'll concentrate mostly on Guardians of the Potential until we finish the events of Buffy Season Two, I'm still undecided if I want each season to be a seperate story part of a series or if I wll just write all of the seasons up here. I guess we'll find out when the time comes. Xander's Last Stand may get more updates then any of my other stories aside from this one as I focus on finishing both of them up with Xander's Last Stand being relatively short work to complete compared to some of my longer range tales it makes sense. There just isn't enough time in the day man, I so wish I could clone myself and ensure that each clone works on one story, then you might see updates for several stories once a week, but sadly I don't know any Kaminoans or the like.
Yikes taking too long. Anyway here's Chapter Five of Guardians of the Potential, Part one of School Hard.
Wanda sighed as she sat down in the cafeteria with her books, since regaining consciousness last week as a Transmetal the Predacons had become fairly busy. For the most part they patrolled, tangled with Airazor and Tigatron infrequently and had kept tabs on Alexander at all times seeing as how the undead populous seemed to have it in for the Slayer and her gang. Wanda herself had attempted on numerous occasions to join the little slaying group to little avail, Cordelia kept her ever busy and on call for socializing and even attempted dating, thankfully Wanda stopped that half of the equation by kissing Cordy on the lips thus proving she wasn’t in to guys. And then of course there had been the whole grave robbing to build Franken-Daryl a bride incident, since Alexander had not been directly endangered the others chose to avoid getting involved, besides they couldn’t help out the Slayer too often otherwise they could become predictable and the humans would be targeted by the yet to appear Heralds of Unicron. Although they’d probably be targeted anyway, this way at least Tigatron and Airazor didn’t decide to go all Predacon evil on them and attack the innocent humans, now there was an ironic thought Predacons protecting humans against Predacons the universe truly did have a strange sense of humor.
“Hey Wanda,” a voice greeted from behind her glancing up she found Alexander Harris and Willow Rosenberg standing there.
“Oh, uh, hi,” she returned nervously. Despite a week of hang time with Cordelia and her clique she still had a little trouble adjusting to human socializing habits, Cybertronians may have adopted many of the same habits as them by the time of the Maximal regime but there were still several key differences. Briefly she began to wonder what Buzz Saw and Insecticon might be up to back on Cybertron. “Where’s Buffy?” she asked remembering to smile.
“Principal Snyder called her to his office,” Willow replied.
“Finally escaped Cordelia I see,” Alex remarked with a smirk.
“Huh, oh yeah, well she kind of freaked out on me yesterday when I brought up the fire at the old science building. Plus I think I made her really upset when I kissed her last night to stop her from setting me up with all those damn boys, so here I am, uh, Cordy-less.”
“Kissed Cordelia?” Willow asked aghast, Alex had a funny look in his eyes.
“You’re a lesbian?” he blurted, Wanda blushed, “great, I mean that gives us a chance to at least get to know something about you and maybe prevent you becoming a new Cordette plus we could set you up with someone who isn’t Cordelia, she is definitely not prime dating material,” Alex finished as he took a seat across from her. Willow sat next to her and patted her shoulder.
“Pay no attention to him he’s off in fantasy land with threesomes, plus all he really wants to know is how you deal with living with Mister Lee,” she explained in a conspiratorial tone.
“Hey in my defense that guy is as tough as an old leather boot and has got to be cold blooded, he even forces Sheila to do her work. That right there is playing with fire,” Alex pointed out with a grimace.
“Sheila?” Wanda repeated. “Oh that girl that tried to stab him with her pencil, he said something about that a couple days ago.”
“Does he ever smile?” Alex asked. Wanda laughed at the question knowing Terrorsaur only smiled when he was beating up an enemy or plotting some vicious scheme. “I’ll take that as a no,” he remarked.
“Terrence just has peculiar habits,” Wanda revealed.
“He let’s you call him by his first name?” Willow wondered in awe.
“Yeah, Mister Lee is just his school name I get to call him Terrence, I mean he practically raised me,” she lied.
“That man can not be a good father,” Alex stated, Wanda pretended to be hurt by the comment she had to get in this time who knew when she might get another chance.
“That’s my guardian you’re talking about,” she snapped angrily.
“Sorry, open mouth insert foot,” Alex apologized.
“Well, I’ll forgive you. This time,” Wanda warned.
“The way he teaches can be a little confusing sometimes, why does he constantly keep calling energy Energon? And what’s up with some of those weird terms he slips out when he’s talking about the weapons of war?” Willow started asking; Wanda sighed and rolled her eyes at the obvious annoyance keeping hidden from the general populace meant.
“I really don’t know guys; I mean he’s always been like that I think it’s because of his manuscript.” She glanced around to make sure no one else was listening. “Ever since I was five he’s been writing this epic script thing he’s trying to sell to Hollywood, even I’ve never seen it,” she whispered.
“Cool,” Alex said and then he noticed the time, “uh-oh bell’s about to ring we’d better go meet up with Buffy and see what Snyder wanted.” Both of them started to get up and Wanda decided to make her move.
“Mind if I tag along?” she asked nervously, “to be honest I’ve been spending so much time with Queen C I’ve barely had time to just be myself.” Alex eyed Willow the two seeming to share a secret conversation.
“Sure come on Wanda let’s go,” Alex invited with a winning smile. Blushing automatically as a response she’d picked up from the other girls she smiled back and quickly collected her things.
“Snyder’s got you guys making party favors, huh?” Xander asked moments later as the trio joined Buffy outside, the blonde eyed Wanda suspiciously for a moment then shook her head after the other girl shot her a nervous little smile of greeting.
“His two worst students. That’s what mom sees when she looks at me, a Sheila,” Buffy replied watching the other girl kiss an older boy with long blonde hair.
“Well Sheila’s intense,” Xander said.
“Really?” Wanda asked.
“Yep, that guy with her? That’s the guy she can bring home to mother,” he revealed.
“She was already smoking in fifth grade,” Willow announced, “once I was look out for her.”
“You’re bad to the bone,” Xander teased.
“I’m a rebel,” Willow agreed with a tiny nod and a smile.
“Smoking, ugh that has to be the most pointless vice you… Uh, I mean, humanity ever came up with,” Wanda said in disgust.
“Huh, so you don’t like smoking?” Buffy questioned.
“Of course not, nicotine, inhaling narcotics even of such a mild strength as cigarettes. I mean why create such a ludicrous thing in the first place, all it did was create a means to infect us all with lung cancer,” she complained.
“Wow, passionate aren’t we,” Willow observed with a smirk.
“I just never understood the reasons behind smoking, it’s just a way for you, er, us to pollute our bodies.” Wanda shook her head and the quartet began to walk down the stairs, Buffy seeing Wanda in a new light decided to switch back to the Sheila topic.
“It’s not fair, I’m the Slay, er, I mean I do my best in school but sometimes I’ve got like emergencies and stuff. That requires a certain amount of cutting and the occasional fight when, uh, that kind of thing comes up. What’s her excuse?”
“Homework, she won’t do it and most teachers respect that now except the totally ballsy Mister Lee who doesn’t back down an inch thank you very much,” Xander said, “oh that reminds me you might wanna keep away any sharp implements when you’re working with her.”
“Do you think, well you know, do you think the others ever had to go to high school?” Buffy asked trying not to say too much in front of Wanda which was a little hard, the other girl didn’t seem to mind she was being excluded though from part of the conversation if anything she seemed to be completely oblivious to it almost as if she was forcing herself not to pay too close attention. Buffy started getting suspicious of her again.
“It’s no biggie,” Xander said, “you’ll have a nice soiree the parents will love it. As long as nothing really bad happens between now and then you’ll be fine.
“Are you crazy?” Buffy demanded coming to a stop, “what did you say that for? Now something bad is gonna happen!” She punched Xander in the arm.
“What-a-ya mean? Nothing’s gonna happen,” he said defensively.
“Not until some dummy says, ‘as long as nothing bad happens’,” Willow informed.
“It’s the ultimate jinx,” Buffy added.
“It is?” Wanda asked dumbly. Willow took her arm and brought her around so she and Buffy could both stare her in the eyes making her uncomfortable.
“Totally, not even my mom could dispute that,” the blonde stated gravely.
“See it’s like this unwritten rule here, never ever say that ‘cause it only means something bad will happen,” the redhead added somberly.
“But that’s crazy, what could possibly happen?” Wanda blurted, Buffy slapped her in the arm.
“Don’t say that,” she wailed but already it was too late for Wanda to take it back.
“That’s even worse,” Willow exclaimed turning to glare at Xander, “now look what you started Xander. What were you thinking? Or were you even thinking at all?” she muttered eyeing her friend poignantly and making him squirm a little on the spot.
“What has that Cordelia been teaching you?” Buffy mumbled eyeing Wanda thoughtfully.
“Um mostly fashion sense and who not to date, like Terrence would even let me date if I wanted to plus the whole lesbian thing, hello those guys just don’t do it for me and why can’t she understand it makes me totally uncomfortable to have to explain that to her?” she ranted with a sour grimace on her face. Both Willow and Buffy shared exasperated looks and started to lead Wanda away.
“Rule number one, don’t stay out too late after dark and never alone,” Buffy started to say. “Cordy should know better then to forget about this, it’s basic Hellmouth procedure,” she grumbled under her breath.
“Well, you guys don’t know,” Xander called after the retreating trio hugging his satchel tightly, “maybe this time it’ll be different!”
The figure maneuvered carefully along the ceiling watching the vampires gather, there weren’t many but some did appear and one was obviously disgusted by the pitiful turn out.
“We are supposed to be the feared denizens of the Hellmouth,” she complained with a sneer, “those beasties are starting to put a crimp in our style I thought this place was supposed to be protected.”
“We need a leader worthy of us,” a male vampire informed, “both the Master and the Anointed One are dead. Someone has to take their place.”
“As long as the Hellmouth is host to those mechanical menaces whoever attempts such a feat will be sharing their grave,” a third older looking vampire pointed out.
“If we could find out how to kill them or what they want,” the female murmured thoughtfully.
“What about the bird and the cat?” the younger male asked, “they don’t seem to get along.”
“Perhaps what we need is an edge,” another vampire broke in.
“Continue,” the woman urged.
“This weekend is the night of St. Vigeous; our power shall be at its peak. With that strength surely I will be able to eliminate one of those pests, and the rest of us with equal strength could equally destroy the rest,” he stated confidently.
“What about the Slayer?” a fourth fledgling asked nervously.
“We’ll be able to kill her too, I’ll personally see to that,” the older vamp stated with a smile. “When we kill them it’ll be the greatest event since the crucifixion, hell the U.S. government might even pay us a fortune for those mechanical beings bodies. I should know too after all, I was there,” he bragged confusing some of the others because of his ramblings.
“You were there,” a new voice interjected from the doorway. All of the vampires turned to find someone standing shrouded in the shadows. “Oh please! If every vampire who said he was at the crucifixion was actually there it would have been like Woodstock,” the newcomer remarked strolling into the room revealing a tall lanky looking platinum blonde man in a long black duster.
“I oughta rip your throat out,” the older man spat. The platinum blonde turned his back on the older man and strolled in amongst the others.
“I was actually at Woodstock, that was a wired gig. I fed off a flowerperson and I spent the next six hours watchin’ my hand move,” the newcomer remarked conversationally. The older vamp rushed at the upstart youth only to get blindsided and knocked to the floor unconscious. “So, who do you kill for fun around here?” he asked with a smirk.
“Who are you?” the female asked.
“Spike. I heard that Anointed guy got himself aced, ticked off the wrong party and all that, something about robot animals that turn into robot people? What’s up with that bollox?” Spike questioned, the others appeared nervous but before they could start filling him in on the current situation from their understanding someone new entered the room. Spike spotted her swaying slightly a look of concern flashing over his now human face. “Drusilla, you shouldn’t be walking around. You’re weak,” he said.
“Look at all the people, are these nice people?” the woman asked her tone unnerving some of the others.
“We’re getting along,” Spike replied not wanting the others to bear witness to Dru’s true condition.
“What about the other one?” Dru questioned glancing up at the ceiling, “I could feel it from outside, that one has power,” she added. Confused Spike and the others looked up seeing nothing amongst the shadows.
“Dru what are you talking about luv?” Drusilla giggled at the question and stared at one particular spot.
“This one has lots of legs, eight of them to trap his prey; I’ve always wanted a pet like him he’s deadly. May we keep him Spike?” she questioned swaying weakly as she began to feel the urge to collapse, before anyone could speak a laugh echoed amongst the rafters, a laugh that managed to send chills down the spines of several vampires present. Lowering himself on a shimmering strand of webbing the mother of all tarantulas appeared a dark black and grey in color with silver chrome on some of his body parts, his eight eyes shining with an inner light. Instantly the others grew tense, Spike however just stared at a loss to explain the feelings he felt upon seeing this mechanized arachnid.
“Greetings, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!” the creature said
“Who the hell are you?” the female vamp asked nervously.
“I am Tarantulas,” the spider thing replied his mandibles looking strangely disproportionate as he spoke.
“You’re a tarantula and your name is tarantulas?” the fledgling blurted Spike had to wonder if the kid even graduated middle school let alone high school.
“Not tarantulas the plural of tarantula, but Tarantulas, say it with me now Taran-tu-Las, as in Las Vegas,” the spider lectured rolling all of his eight eyes at the sheer stupidity of the fledgling. Spike was a little surprised he didn’t outright kill the idiot for being so stupid.
“Right, fine Tarantulas, so are you here to kill us too?” the female demanded angrily. Tarantulas burst into another mad cackle and lowered himself to the floor, Spike was impressed by the sheer size of the spider he towered over them on his eight legs by at least a good foot and a half possibly more.
“I’m not concerned with you pitiful little demons, I am here simply to observe and offer you a means of protection against your enemies the Predacons.”
“Predacons,” Spike remarked, “sounds like a fancy glee club.”
“The Predacons are a race of robotic life forms from the planet Cybertron in another dimension you might say, they were sent here by an annoying alien race called the Vok to protect one of the humans allied with your Slayer,” Tarantulas revealed.
“A Slayer with friends,” Spike commented, “that’s new.”
“Yes, you see when he saved the Slayer from the death at the hands of the Master he attracted some large scale attention,” Tarantulas informed, “the God of Chaos from our reality, or dimension sensed the humans potential for. I guess you could call it chaotic energy control, he fears this potential so he sent a few hitmen to eliminate the boy. The Vok sent the Predacons to protect him, and being the way they are they extend that protection to his friends and this town, so that puts you at a distinct disadvantage.” Tarantulas cackled again.
“Sounds like the ruddy plot of one of those science fiction movies,” Spike complained.
“So what, why are you here? You one of these hitmen?” the female who seemed to have taken charge of the others demanded growling impatiently.
“As I said to offer you protection, I have my own plans for the child to use his abilities for my goals,” Tarantulas stated, “in order to do that I could use you to make his friends dead so they won’t interfere, but with the Predacons so easily dispatching of your numbers I’m afraid you won’t last very long.”
“How tough could these blighters be?” Spike dismissed.
“Powerful my Spike, they are oh so powerful, I can see it my pet. They are truly immortal,” Dru spoke up with a giddy laugh, “glowing little balls that flicker and spark filled with energy and smoke and wonders. The universe weeps when they extinguish, but they can feel such great joy, oh Spike make it stop nasty icky feelings,” Dru complained with disgust. Tarantulas laughed as Spike moved to comfort his love and a pulsating orb of energy appeared floating in front of him.
“The spark,” he said, “and thank you Rampage for the demonstration material,” he continued with a chuckle, “Cybertronians never truly perish they join the Matrix and are reborn with no memory of their past,” he revealed with a laugh. “Kill the Spark and the Predacons won’t be a problem, but you can’t fight them, that’s where this comes in.” Tarantulas pulled out a small flat square device from somewhere on his person and strapped it onto the female vampire. “Tarantulas Terrorize!” Spike watched in awe as the spider shifted into a robot, the robot was about six to seven feet tall not counting the eight legs arrayed in a splayed appearance on his back’s armor. He had three fingered hands and a glowing yellow light bar for eyes, he also had wide flat two toed feet with a heel spike on each foot and paneling that looked curiously like the tires to a motorcycle for shoulders.
“What’s this supposed to do?”
“Sentinel Activate!” Tarantulas cried, the group stared curiously as a small energy shield sprang up around the female, Spike really should have asked for her name. Without warning Tarantulas began firing machine guns out of the wheel shoulder armor plating and energy blasts from a smaller wheel-like gun in his hand.
“Bloody hell!” Spike cursed, but when they saw the female vamp again they could tell she hadn’t even been hit.
“These Sentinel patches are designed to repel all types of Cybertronian weapons; they have a limited power supply however good for thirty minute intervals. Should be enough to escape if the Predacons are around,” Tarantulas informed grinning his unique facial design making him look strangely inhuman yet at the same time almost human enough to fool a person.
“What about stakes, swords, holy water?” the female vamp wondered her eyes lighting up.
“It was designed for Cybertronian weapons,” Tarantulas repeated, “not to give you an edge on the Slayer or your prey,” he added shoving a stake through the shield so suddenly the female had no hope of reacting she was dust instantly. “Now then, I’ll supply everyone who works for me with a Sentinel, the only thing you have to do is kill the Slayer and her friends before I make my move, avoid the Predacons at all costs and, do not kill, feed from or let anything else happen to Alexander LaVelle Harris,” he stated coldly his optic bar narrowing with his ire.
“That’s the kid you’re jonesin’ for,” Spike said, “I don’t see a problem with that provided these Predacon blokes aren’t constantly harassing us.”
“Oh they won’t be,” Tarantulas returned cryptically.
“But, what about our nest?” the fledgling wondered, “they know where we live and can kill us all easily.”
“That will not be a problem,” a new voice spoke up. The group of vampires looked up to see a much larger goldish bronze and purple robot above the hole in the ceiling hovering on large gossamer wings, his mouth reminded Spike of that Predator bloke seen in the movie theatre in New Zealand when he and Dru enjoyed those tasty thirteen year old gatecrashers, that had been a fun night. “Shield generators in place Tarantulas as well as the autoguns, any Predacons try and get back in here and they’ll be encountering quite the surprise.”
“Thank you Transquito,” Tarantulas returned, “as you can see I take care of my allies,” he said with a cunning smirk.
“So, what’s the catch?” Spike wondered skeptically, “aside from not eating your human pet or soon to be at any rate,” he added.
“No catch, why would you suspect that there would be any other stipulations to my generosity?”
“Because I’ve been around long enough to know when someone’s dickin’ around with me,” Spike answered.
“Well this time your instincts are mistaken, trust me on that,” Tarantulas informed. “Pathetic creature if only he knew the full truth behind my plans involving the boy, but then he might get it into his head to sire him and make Alexander use all of that wasted potential simply to make vampires the dominant species of the planet
“Spike my pet, there are no hidden nasties to snap and trap, bite and sting. We shall have a fine party with tea and cakes and the Slayer’s corpse as the centerpiece,” Drusilla announced before she saw into the eyes of the spider and felt the coldest of cold spread through her very body. The undead could suffer from extreme temperatures though they often had ways to ignore it when hungry, but something about the arachnid suddenly made her feel truly cold. “Spike, I’m cold.”
“I’ve got you,” Spike said wrapping Dru in his coat not understanding where this chill was coming from.
“I’m a princess,” Dru returned with a laugh.
“That’s what you are,” Spike agreed softly. Drusilla smiled as she pricked his cheek with her fingernail causing a bead of blood to flow out. Reaching up she licked it off, Spike turned to the robot with a broad smile and Dru shot him a knowing grin, the look of one who understood a kindred spirit.
“You’ve got yourself a deal mate,” he said, “I’ll be takin’ charge of this here operation as it were,” he added addressing the other vampires.
“Why should you lead us?” the fledgling demanded, “what’s so special about you?”
“Hmmm, now let me see,” Spike began crossing over to the fledgling. Lashing out he drove his fist through the younger vamps gut crippling though not killing the idiot. “Right, show of hands how many of us here have actually killed a Slayer before?” Spike held up his hand.
“You have?” a new vamp asked surprised. Not many could claim such a feat outside of the Demonic community where slaying Slayers was a far more common feat since most demons considered vampires lowest of the low and incapable of even dealing with one Slayer let alone two in the course of their lives. Almost every Slayer ever called had met her end at the hands of the more powerful demons who had swarmed them in numbers to destroy them, only a rare few had been eliminated by vampires such as Dracula or even Lothos who was one of the vampires with the most kills under his belt and he’d been taken out by the current Slayer two years ago.
“Yeah I did a couple Slayers in my time. I don’t like to brag,” Spike boasted as he broke into a huge smile, “who am I kidding? I love to brag, there was this one Slayer during the Boxer Rebellion, and…” he trailed off as Dru let out a sudden cry of alarm.
“I can’t see her, the Slayer, I can’t see!” she cried out looking up to the heavens briefly before being drawn back to the spider who was smirking, “it’s dark where she is. Kill her, kill her Spike. Kill her for me?”
“It’s done baby,” he returned taking Dru in his arms.
“Kill her for princess?” she pleaded shying back from the spider.
“I’ll chop her into messes,” Spike vowed.
“You are my sweet… my little Spike,” Dru said turning back to the spider she smiled up at him secretively, “everything spins, the Slayer won’t stop you but they might.”
“I highly doubt I’ll have any trouble with them,” Tarantulas dismissed before in a flash he transformed yet again this time into a meched out spider-cycle, “I’ll be back with your Sentinel patches in an hour.” Gunning his motor he took off in a flash. Spike turned to eye the assembled vampires, his new minions.
“So, how ‘bout this Slayer? Is she tough?” he asked.
Terrence rubbed at his eyes feeling thoroughly exhausted as he put aside the last of the home work assignments he’d been forced to grade, many were dismally pitiful and a few downright terrifying, especially Sheila’s. But a few showed great promise, Willow, Daniel, Jonathan and quite surprisingly Harmony Kendall and Buffy Summers had both scored ninety-eight. Considering the ditzy persona both shared on campus he had not expected either to perform so well, especially Miss Kendall.
“And to think in two more days I need to meet the parents of these human adolescents,” he sighed.
“Terrorsaur!” Dinobot snapped, “why aren’t you on patrol?”
“Because I need to earn the paychecks that keep us here,” Terrence snapped back, “Scorponok’s covering for me; it’d help if we had at least two more units on our side.”
“Unfortunately I doubt the Vok sent any of the Axalons’ intact stasis pods here for us to miraculously discover,” Dinobot pointed out, “try not to get swamped being a human the Heralds could appear at any moment and we must be ready.”
“Fine whatever, I’ve got to recharge my servo fluids feel like they’re drying up,” Terrence complained stiffly climbing to his feet and moving to his berth.
Wanda smiled as she watched the rest of the students fret and moan about parent teacher night, not having any parents meant she could get away without attending and focus on figuring out the best way to befriend Alexander and his friends. They had to trust her enough with their secrets before she could listen in and figure out when the Predacons should intervene, Wanda was going to enjoy not having to be surrounded by the Cordettes.
She walked towards the library noting as she did that precious few students even dared to venture there, she was going to have to figure out a reason for going in there to talk to Alex and Willow again. Without warning two dark blonde blurs waylaid her and dragged her into the girls bathroom, totally unexpected this attack got Wanda’s attention, turning she found two younger teenage twins standing in front of the doors preventing her from leaving.
“Hey Waspy, love the skirt,” the girl on the left said with a smirk.
“Oh, uh, thank you I… wait a minute did you just call me?”
“Yep,” the girl on the right replied with a wink.
“But,” Wanda started to say only to be interrupted by the girl on the left.
“No time, if mom finds out we’re here we’ll be grounded for a millennia,” she said, “we just had to come though.”
“There’s this big thing going down on parent teacher night, it’s going to be nasty with the Heralds showing up and on top of that an old friend of yours has been supplying the vampires with toys.”
“Huh? What are you two talking about?” Wanda wondered mystified.
“You’ll find out totally soon enough, but we wanted to give something to you for tomorrow night,” the girl on the right said pulling something from behind her back. Wanda stared at it utterly shocked; it couldn’t be what she thought it was, because if it was then how did it get here?
“It’s real all right,” the girl on the left stated. Reverently Wanda took the item from the twins and brought it up to the light staring at the glistening object in awe.
“I know transmetals aren’t affected the same way, but this should still help with the Heralds,” the girl on the right said. Leaning closer she gave Wanda a kiss on the cheek and together the two of them vanished, stashing the object in her purse Wanda made sure to wrap it tightly so it wouldn’t accidentally go off.
“I have no idea who those two were or how they got this, but Lizard-bot is going to be so shocked he’ll probably have a coronary as the humans say,” she whispered with a smile.
That night the Bronze was fairly busy, but Willow and Buffy couldn’t be bothered to notice or at least Wanda thought as much mimicking a sigh she sipped her drink and continued to pretend to be interested in what Cordelia was saying. At least she’d overcome the whole lesbian fear Cordy seemed to have had, probably because Wanda was really the only one who sat through everything she said without blurting something stupid like Harmony or Patricia.
Slowly Quincy stalked through the room eyes darting back and forth as his sensors sought out any vampires, an easy feat considering their bodies were all room temperature. Suddenly he noticed one hanging back near the hall leading to the bathrooms, smiling in anticipation he stalked slowly up to the creature he’d been tinkering of late. Discovering that vampires put up more of a challenge for Pretenders he decided it was time to start making some new weapons, so as he walked up behind the vamp he ‘accidentally’ tripped his arm flying out straight to arrest his fall. With one quick flick of the wrist his new stake launcher fired into the back of the vamp, it was dust before it even knew what happened.
“I love this new toy,” he proclaimed softly. His sensors alerted him to two more vampires, but before he could make a move one of them left with a stupid femme and the other one started talking about him as if he’d just come inside. “Hmmmm, sounds like that one’s up to somethin’, I’d better follow’em.” But Quincy couldn’t move fast enough through the growing throng of humans to get outside in time to find out what it was, cursing his luck he decided to follow the Slayer and her group at a discreet distance just in case anything exciting cropped up.
Meanwhile back inside the club Cordelia watched Sheila as she left with two guys obviously drunk, something inside of her felt uneasy about it, but she couldn’t just ditch her friends to get Sheila out of that jam she wasn’t Buffy after all and why should she even care even if Sheila was her mother’s third cousin twice removed or however that went? Glancing at a distracted Wanda she got a sudden idea.
“I so don’t think you should be wasting all your time here tonight, don’t you have homework to do?”
“Huh?” Wanda blinked in surprise.
“I’m saying you should go home and while you’re at it tell Sheila that she forgot her purse,” Cordelia explained pointing to the purse at the table Sheila had been sitting at.
“Why should I do that?” Wanda demanded cluelessly, Cordelia rolled her eyes.
“Can’t you take a hint already? You’re cramping my style tonight, I want to score some points with some guys and you are totally bringing me down with the whole lesbian vibe you’re practically a beacon. It’s like you want some floozy girl to pick you up with that on, I thought I taught you better then that. And on top of it I don’t trust those guys that Sheila took off with, normally I wouldn’t care but she still owes me twenty bucks in bail money and I’m not letting her off the hook. But no way am I class-less enough to just rifle through her purse, so beat it and tell that bad girl bitch wannabe to get back in here, now!” Cordy snapped. Without realizing what she was doing Wanda leapt to her feet and marched out double time, by the time she was in charge of her senses again she was already outside calling to Sheila who’d been talking with a platinum blonde in a long dark coat.
“Sod off girly me and the lady were just about to have a real party,” the guy said. Wanda shot him a glare and suddenly noticed his lack of a body temperature.
“So that’s what Cordy was trying to do,” she muttered to herself. Not wanting to waste time with niceties Wanda decided to get involved with the fun she’d mostly missed out on due to playing human, in a blink her shell was shed and Waspinator stood gleaming in the lights of the alley in his new Transmetal form.
“Ruddy hell you’re one of those Predacons,” the vampire blurted, “neat trick but don’t you feel cramped in that tiny little shell?”
“Wazzzzzpinator destroy puny vampire,” the bug exclaimed raising his weapon and firing an energy pulse.
“Sentinel engage!” the vampire cried startling Waspinator as a shield sprang up and deflected his energy blast.
“What, not possible,” he blurted.
“Heh looks like the bloody spiders’ toy works,” the vampire said.
“Spider-bot is alive and here too?” Waspinator questioned.
“Sorry can’t stick around to chat,” the vampire said reaching out to grab Sheila, “by the way you do know you’re a guy right? I mean you bloody well sound like a guy so what’s with the fruity disguise?”
“Wazzzzzpinator got short straw,” the Predacon replied with a sigh, “female fleshiebot stays!” he ordered in his best threatening tone.
“And how do you intend to stop me you messed up tranny?” the vampire demanded smugly.
“Vampires can’t fly,” came the simple reply and in a blink Waspinator transformed to insect mode darting forward and snatching Sheila in his legs.
“Give me the girl damnit,” the vampire growled tugging on Sheila.
“Wazzzzzpinator not think so,” he shouted back.
“Oh my God what’s happening?” Sheila blurted as her alcohol addled mind finally realized that the giant mechanical wasp wasn’t a hallucination brought on by her drunkenness.
“Fine keep the ruddy bitch, I’ll just get something fresher,” the vampire said letting go of Sheila. Waspinator was still pulling on the girl and when the resistance went away both of them wound up flying backwards and crashed into the open dumpster outside of the rear door, when he finally got untangled the vampire was gone, but at least he saved the girl. Glancing down to check on her he was dismayed to discover his stinger had punctured her abdomen in the fall, Sheila was breathing heavily in shock and her drunken stupor was clearly fully gone due to the adrenaline now pumping through her system.
“Somebody help me!” she screamed, “please save me from this bug, I can’t stand wasps, oh my God don’t eat me, or make me your queen or, or, I don’t know whatever giant wasps do to people,” she pleaded hysterically. Waspinator shook his head at the display, this was big bad Sheila? Buffy really had nothing to worry about from her if you asked him.
“Wazzzzzpinator get you to hospital fast sorry about stinging you, but vampire would have been far worse fate, hold on fleshiebot Wazzzzzpinator not let you die,” he said trying to sound encouraging. In less then a cycle he was transformed to jet mode Sheila secure in his cockpit and he blasted off to the hospital at maximum burn. “Superman never has this problem,” he complained silently grateful that Starscream’s lingering influence on his spark made his vehicle mode large enough to carry passengers.
The next day in the library the Scoobies were working to prepare themselves for the day of St. Vigeous, Willow examined the crossbow to make sure it was functional. Jenny brought some spare pieces of wood over to Xander and Cordelia who were busy making stakes out of them, Buffy picked up a large machete and began to chop the cucumber for the vegetable tray the only one in the room not working on preparations for tomorrow thanks to Sheila’s bailing. Although it really wasn’t her fault, she’d been attacked last night and was currently in the hospital raving about giant wasps and vampires fighting over her to become their evil queen of the night or something like that.
“For three nights the unholy ones scourge themselves into a fury, um, culminating in a savage attack on the night of St. Vigeous,” Giles informed.
“Does anyone remember when Saturday night meant date night,” Xander quipped.
“You sure don’t,” Cordy shot back.
“Punch?” Willow asked turning to Buffy.
“Punch, I need, I need punch!” she exclaimed in dismay.
“My fingers are cramping, how long have I been doing this?” Cordy asked.
“Three minutes,” Xander replied frustratedly.
“So can I go now?” Cordy wondered, “she doesn’t need this many stakes. I mean, if this guy Spike is as mean as you all said it should be over pretty quickly.” Buffy shot Cordelia a look. “We’re still all rooting for you on Saturday, I’d be there for you myself if I didn’t have a leg wax,” she stated.
“Sheila was actually hospitalized?” Willow asked almost randomly trying to prevent Buffy from attacking Cordelia.
“Um, yeah, two guys were found at the Bronze last night with broken necks and Sheila was totally gutted by something she says it was this giant wasps stinger,” Buffy said in a rush distracted by all the preparations she still had to get done, “but I’ve got to go make punch like now so can you guys hold down the fort? Great,” she called over her shoulder heading out the library door. Xander and Cordy automatically reached for some veggies. “No!” Buffy called startling them, after she was gone for real this time two people entered the library abruptly startling the group and making them all stare at the newcomers in horror since all the weapons were clearly visible. Also they hadn’t thought anybody else would be in the school at that time.
“Crude, but effective,” Terrence Lee observed examining an axe briefly before spotting Giles and Jenny, “perfect two teachers to better keep an eye on you.” Wanda Maine flinched at the implied displeasure in Mister Lee’s voice. “I trust you won’t mind keeping an eye on Wanda while I deal with the parents, she has become greatly troubled by her stupid attempt to protect that other girl last night which resulted in the injury which has hospitalized young Sheila,” he added with a glare that made Wanda squirm.
“It wasn’t my fault,” she protested.
“Save it,” Terrence snapped, “you can put her to work if you like doing whatever it is you are doing,” he said to Giles with an air of dismissal.
“Er, um, of course,” Giles stated lamely seeing as there was no way out of it. Terrence nodded and marched straight back out of the library pausing briefly to shoot the entire group one last look.
“You should really find a more secure location for this sort of thing, no telling who might barge in,” he chastised with a tiny smirk and then he was gone and everyone was now looking at Wanda putting her on the spot.
“You, um, you know about, stuff?” Willow wondered incredulously.
“Vampires and things?” Wanda asked, “yeah, well you know Terrence he kind of grew up knowing about all that. See in China it’s like this big smorgasbord, so many people nobody really cares if a couple hundred get eaten and all that smog Vampires love it, Terrence was kind of one of the lucky ones he got away from the vamp that tried to eat him when his sister sacrificed herself so he could live.”
“I can not believe you knew all along,” Cordelia complained raising her hands in exasperation, “do I attract you types of people or something? Is there a big sign on my soul or whatever that says ‘people who know about vampires I’m here for you’ when I am so not? And you how stupid are you trying to save Sheila from a vampire you could have both been hurt or worse and then it would have been all my fault for sending you out there in the first place. I just thought she was going to get raped or something, not like you needed to be all heroic and stuff,” she ranted.
“Why Cordelia I had no idea you cared,” Xander mocked with a laugh.
“She owed me twenty bucks for bailing her out one time,” Cordy defended, “we can’t all pick our families Harris you above all should know that.”
“You and Sheila are related?” he blurted.
“Distantly related,” Cordy returned frostily.
“This is so weird,” Willow spoke up, “I mean what are the odds, ulp,” she trailed off clamping a hand over her mouth.
“Huh?” Wanda asked.
“Nothing, nothing this is me not saying anything see,” Willow babbled, “how are you at sharpening swords?” she asked dumbly handing out one of Giles’ many blades.
“Um, not sure I don’t think I’ve ever tried to before,” Wanda returned.
“Pull up a knife and start whittling stakes then,” Xander proposed with a broad grin.
“O-Ok sure, but why are we doing this exactly?” she asked curiously.
“Oh there’s this big hoopla on Saturday all the local vampires get in on the action, it’s like this totally annual deal so the students need extra protection and that’s our job,” Xander stated smoothly. Wanda nodded accepting of this excuse and started making a stake, though she didn’t know much about it as the others discovered when she wound up making a stake with points on both ends. Jagged splintery points.
“Here I can show you,” Willow offered with a smile.
“Thanks,” Wanda said, “Lizard-bot not like Terrorsaur’s plan, but with vampires having shields supplied by spider-bot Wazzzzzpinator had to take the initiative. Now to build their trust in me
,” she thought to herself.
Standing on the bridge Hook smiled as he finished the last of the programs and turned to eye his fellow Heralds, Line grinned maliciously while Sinker merely shrugged his shoulders in a gesture of impatience. Nodding Hook depressed the switch and a small hum began building in the engines.
“At last we are prepared to destroy the Predacons,” he announced.
“I still fail to see why we wait to attack the boy,” Sinker complained, “he is only one human.” Hook shot Sinker a glare as their vessel slowly began to rise from its resting place.
"We have our instructions and our reasons, we’ve been over this a dozen times,” he stated frustratedly, “now get to the cargo bay and prepare to launch our little surprise,” he ordered.
“As you wish Hook,” Sinker stated through gritted teeth before turning to leave.
“Patience was never his strong suit,” Line commented, “I think his new beast mode might be affecting his logic circuits.”
“We’ll be back in our old bodies soon enough,” Hook muttered dismissively. Plotting a course for the Predacon base he smiled satisfactorily; soon the Predacons would pose no further danger to their mission and when the time came Alexander LaVelle Harris would be nothing more then a memory.
Alarms rang out in the warehouse and both girls rushed to the central monitoring system, Aurora quickly jabbed at the keyboard causing an image of the ship to appear on the screen. Her sister Theia stared up at the imposing vessel, it was a flat almost W-shaped vehicle with two protruding sharp edged wings and a central blade-like prow, according to their parents who had created a vessel recognition program back on Cybertron it was the spitting image of a vessel called the Darksyde which the Predacons once used to start the Beast Wars.
Theia hit a switch next to her head and a trajectory was quickly extrapolated, frowning slightly she turned to her sibling.
“Dad never mentioned a ship, what should we do he’s back on Cybertron right now,” she said.
“What can we do?” Aurora shot back, “this place was made to keep an eye on things and stop Tarantulas when he uses the you-know-what,” she reminded. Behind them the elevator rose silently due to the still blaring alarm klaxons, the girls both jumped when someone rather large emerged from the darkness of the rooms shadows wings unfurling behind his back and a splotchy purple emblem painted on his chest.
“Relax children, this is why I was sent here,” he stated with what amounted to a smile.
“Who are you?” Theia asked stammering only a little.
“Your fathers’ insurance policy,” he replied with a fang filled grin.
Willow led Joyce into Mister Lee’s class and froze like a deer caught in headlights when she discovered he was seated behind his desk, she almost looked like she was hyperventilating.
“Thank you Miss Rosenberg, but I believe I can take it from here,” he stated with a firm gaze of dismissal.
“Eeeeep,” Willow exclaimed and ducked back outside of the classroom.
“Seeing as how I have already spoken with the Rosenbergs and I know the Harrises by sight you must be Miss Summers,” Terrence greeted with a handshake. Joyce blinked unaccustomed to such a straight forwardness from any of Buffy’s teachers; this was also the first one to actually be in the room.
“Joyce Summers Buffy’s mother,” she said formally, “so tell me Mister, um, Lee is my daughter doing well in your class?”
“I would lie to you and say she is a model student Joyce, if I may call you by your first name?”
“Please do,” she insisted.
“Thank you, now as I was saying I feel that Buffy is not living up to her full potential.” Terrence removed several pieces of homework from his desk, copies he had made of all the students assignments. “I am aware school has only started and it has been less then a month, but as you can see here your daughter is scoring surprisingly high marks. Unfortunately she has not applied any of these talents when presented verbal tests or questions during class, I would have written it off as cheating, but the curriculum I teach is surprisingly difficult to do so.” Joyce blinked as she studied the grades taken aback by this revelation.
“Are, are you saying my daughter is excelling so early in the school year?” she asked.
“Precisely,” Terrence replied with a broad smile.
“I, I’m shocked last year her teachers said, I mean,” Joyce stammered.
“Last year her teachers were biased inbred yokels,” Terrence snapped causing Joyce to leap slightly in her chair, “your daughter has more intelligence then most of your, er, her class. And because of a few problems in her personal record people were quick to judge, perhaps that is the reason why she persists in playing the airhead blonde on occasion. Trust me Miss Summers when I say I am proud to have a student of her caliber in my class,” he stated. Joyce smiled and thanked him before departing once more with Willow who had overheard the entire conversation and stared agape at Mister Lee. “That should bring her to pause once Snyder gets to her,” he said once they were gone with a laugh, “a shame nobody gives the Slayer any leeway for her contributions to the community but then again we are talking about clueless human teachers though I suspect Snyder is well aware of what she is actually doing. I’d love to see that Maximal cat give a performance like that.” Terrence smirked maliciously as he once more gathered up his copies of Buffy’s homework.
“I told you he’d be here mom,” a voice cried out as Harmony Kendall stepped into the room, “tell her Mister Lee, tell her I am not a ditz,” she pleaded in a whiny tone of voice.
“When one acts the part one should be prepared to accept the consequences,” he stated coldly resuming his seat.
“Huh?” Harmony mumbled.
“It seems your mother has already chosen to depart,” Terrence indicated with an obvious look of disgust, “some people shouldn’t be allowed to procreate. I hold nothing against you Miss Kendall; one can’t fault the child considering the environment you must have endured growing up. A word of advice, stop trying to get their approval obviously they care more about their pocketbooks than you,” he advised as delicately as he could ever be. Harmony blinked back tears her eyes growing watery and she turned and ran after her mother; rolling his eyes Terrence wondered what more this night could have in store for him which of course is when his enhanced audios heard the sounds of weapons fire in the distance. “I know those guns,” he mused glancing out the nearest window but seeing nothing, “sounds like the Darksyde’s cannons just my luck I’d have to be stuck playing the roll of Lee tonight of all nights the Heralds must have attacked,” he complained.
Dinobot, Quickstrike, Inferno and Scorponok were going over the defenses of the house when the Earth began to rumble, glancing at one another they rushed to central command.
“That’s a Transwarp ship,” Scorponok cursed in shock.
“Incredible,” Dinobot admitted.
“Oh no I don’t wanna die like that again,” Quickstrike said trembling in obvious fear.
“Who said anything about dieing,” Dinobot countered depressing a switch secreted amongst the monitor screens. The house trembled and rumbled as though an Earthquake had struck and then it began to transform, exterior panels flipped or slid aside allowing the building to reconfigure similar to the large city sized ancestors of the Predacons. Autoguns and mega cannons emerged tracking the ship and a large shield snapped on, the four Predacons and the central command room rose up into the open air and the backyard split in two revealing a hidden garage beneath the ground stashed with two vehicles, one resembled an overgrown mosquito the other a humongous spider.
“Where the slag did that come from?” Quickstrike demanded.
“Tarantulas loved to tinker, he built those during the Beast Wars before you arrived but Megatron never allowed him to power them up, took to much Energon to power so Megatron wrote them off,” Scorponok replied. “I’m surprised the Vok managed to get them, I thought they would have been destroyed when that Tigerhawk guy blew up the ship.”
“Things are not always as they appear Scorponok, and energy levels are not a problem for us on this planet especially with this as a tool to refine future Energon crystals,” Dinobot said holding up the mysterious Energon crystal Waspinator had presented to him yesterday.
“Royalty look!” Inferno cried out. The others glanced up to see the rear cargo hatch open and a hulking figure standing glaring down at them.
“You can not hope to defend against the Sons of Chaos!” he cried brandishing a jagged edged sword in one hand.
“Predacons we are Unicron’s Heralds!” a voice announced over the vessels loudspeaker. “And we are not alone, Predacons meet Vehicons!” Four indistinct figures leapt from the vessel impacting with the ground as they landed, one was a hulking orange and dark green figure with yellow highlights and silver clawed hands, it transformed into a Cybertronian steam shovel loaded with rocket launcher and gatling gun.
The second was a dark black and green in color with a large claw for the right hand, it transformed into a Cybertronian version of the SR-71 Blackbird. The third was a combination of browns and beiges with a giant tri-barreled rocket launcher dead center on its chest, the vehicle mode turned out to be a six-wheeled Cybertronian assault vehicle. The fourth was a wiry looking blue and dark green character; it converted into a heavily armed Cybertronian formula-one racer.
“Mirage, Blast Charge, Spy Streak, Scavenger breach their defenses!” the figure in the cargo hold ordered. In response the four Vehicons started firing on the shields and dodging the return fire from the auto cannons.
“We’ll have to go out there and deal with them one on one,” Dinobot said.
“Recall Terrorsaur and Waspinator,” Scorponok insisted.
“They’re surrounded by humans; no we’ll have to fight this battle on our own.”
“I hate an unfair fight, wish ol’ crab cakes were here,” Quickstrike grumbled heading out to deal with one of their attackers.
“They will buuuuuurn Royalty,” Inferno proclaimed picking up both of his weapons and blasting into the air.
“A real workout for my new bod was something I looked forward to, but this wasn’t what I had in mind they could pick us off with that ship,” Scorponok pointed out.
“In the words of our former leader, I think not, nooooo,” Dinobot returned punching in a few quick commands. Instantly all guns started firing up at the ship scoring several hits. “As I suspected, they lack proper shields just as the Darksyde did until we stole Sentinel from the Maximals.”
“Heh, that should keep’em preoccupied. Let’s go kick tailpipe on those Vehi-clowns,” Scorponok exclaimed rushing over the side and firing several missiles at the six-wheeled menace. Dinobot was quick to follow and joined the battle raging in the streets; the Beast Wars had at last come to Sunnydale in force and who could truly say if the Earth would ever be the same again.To Be Continued