Meanwhile in LA, Angel, Spike, Gunn and Illyria stand in the alley. Angel steps forward “I kinda want to slay the dragon.”
As he says it two beams hit the dragon slicing its head off.
“What the hell?” Spike asks.
“Not hell, an angel from heaven.” a voice from above says.
All look up. They are stunned to see Buffy floating down in the arms of a man in red and blue with a cape. They land and Clark puts Buffy down. She sees them staring open mouthed “Ok stop staring. You know big bad army of demons are coming.”
“Buffy?” Angel asks barely believing his eyes.
“Yes Buffy. You ok Angel?” she asks of him.
“What are you doing here?” Angel asks.
“Lets see now. Shopping? Nope. Vacation? Nope, had one last month. End of the world. Yep that’s it. So what did you do this time?”
“I didn’t do anything apart from kill the Circle of the Black Thorn and tick off the Senior Partners.”
Buffy shakes her head at his utter stupidity. “You angered 3 of the most powerful demons in existence. Are you insane?”
“No I was trying to save the world.”
Buffy watches as the demon army slowly approaches “Good job.” she says with unrestrained sarcasm.
“What is this creature that brings you here?” Illyria looks at Clark. In her long life she had never seen a being like him. Her eyes which see beyond human or demon or vampire eyes pick up the aura which surrounds him. It is strangely reminiscent of the sun.
“Hey don’t you refer to my fiancé as a creature.” Buffy tells the strange blue haired girl, well demon really. Her slayer senses picked that up.
“Fiancé!?” Spike finally speaks.
Buffy turns to Spike. She had been so hoping to avoid this meeting ever since she heard he was back. “Yes Spike. Problem with that?”
“He’s not human. I can smell it.” Spike protests.
“Neither are you.” Clark says. “The lack of a heartbeat gives it away.” Of course Clark isn’t even going to mention the fact this Spike bears an uncanny resemblance to the Brain Interactive Construct.
Gunn still bleeding to death had heard all the stories about Buffy. He thought she would be taller. “I hate to break up this reunion but evil army approaching.”
At that moment a demon has snuck up behind Clark and hits him with its weapon which shatters. Clark turns round narrows his eyes and blasts it with his heat vision.
Buffy looks at the now charred corpse “Now that was just rude, sneaking up on us like that.”
The other 4 are staring in disbelief. Illyria speaks up “You possess the powers of a god.”
“Yeah in the bedroom. Oh I think I just channelled Anya.” Buffy says.
Clark can’t help but blush. He shakes it off and turns to Gunn “You’re hurt.”
“Doesn’t mean I can’t fight.” Gunn replies.
Clark walks up to him “Hold still.” Gunn nods and Clark lifts his shirt and uses his heat vision to seal his wounds.
“Thanks.” Gunn says in some pain. “Now lets go kill some demons.”
Angel watching this in some disbelief. Where does Buffy find guys like this? Even Illyria thinks he’s something like a god and that’s saying something. “You know I wanted to slay that dragon.”
“Sorry.” Clark says. The army is getting closer. He lets off several blasts of heat vision that mows the front line down. The demons keep coming.
Buffy assess the situation “Ok Clark the 20 foot one at the back is yours.”
Clark raises an eyebrow “Oh thanks a lot.”
“Oh please you can crush coal into diamonds with your bare hands, a couple ton demon shouldn’t be a problem.”
“It weighs a little more than that Buffy.” Clark remarks.
“Wait? He can do what now?” Spike asks.
“Crush coal into diamonds. How do he think he made my ring?” Buffy shows it off. “Now if you haven’t noticed demon army approaching.”
Clark walks over to Buffy and kisses her “Be careful.”
“You too. Avoid anything magical or I’ll have to hurt you.” she warns Clark.
Clark smiles and flies right into the 20 foot demon knocking it on its back.
“Right then shall we?” Buffy asks the others.
“What manner of being are you?” Illyria asks. She can sense the small portion of demon power in the girl.
“I’m a slayer, look it up. Now back to business.”
“After you.” Angel indicates and then they all charge at the army. Clark is concentrating on the biggest demons. Thankfully their size makes them slow and stupid apparently. Down below him the others are battling away at the hoards of demons. Illyria is easily killing them. Most are weak and insignificant compared to her. Gunn who is no longer bleeding to death is holding his own. Angel and Spike are also making an inroad to the army.
“So are you going to tell us what your boyfriend is?” Spike asks Buffy between killing demon minions.
“None of your business and he’s my fiancé for the record.”
“I still love you, you know.”
“Get over it Spike, I moved on. You had a whole year to come find me, instead I discover you’re working for Wolfram and Hart along with Angel.”
“We looked for you in Rome.” Angel shouts out as he avoids an axe swinging at his head.
“I know. That wasn’t me, it was one of my decoys.”
“So you were never dating the immortal?” Spike asks.
“No but believe you me I gave Jenny a piece of mind for that. I can’t believe she dated him and started that rumour. I’m a one man women and he’s that man.” Buffy points at Clark as he decimates another huge demon.
A demon catches Buffy from behind knocking her down. Before it can strike her though it goes up in flames and Clark appears and helps Buffy up. “Thanks.”
“I said to be careful.” Clark reminds her.
“It caught me off guard.”
Another demon tries to attack Buffy with a sword. Clark blocks with his arm but the sword cuts his skin. Obviously forged with magic. In anger at the pain Clark grabs the demon and throws it clean through the air and it sails out of sight. “I’m starting to get annoyed. I just had this suit made.”
“I know the feeling. Look at this shirt, it‘s brand new as well.” Buffy pokes her finger through a hole in her shirt. She then moves onto his arm. She has never seen Clark bleed before “Will you be alright?”
“I’ll be fine.” The wound closes up in front of Buffy’s eyes. “See all better now.”
Buffy fingers the now smooth skin exposed by the cut in Clark’s suit.
Spike slays another demon “I hate to break up all the bonding but still several thousand demons to go.”
Clark tilts his head at Spike in annoyance and in a blink of an eye is off. Spike finds himself having to dodge several demons that are suddenly flying in his direction.
“You shouldn’t annoy him. You should have seen what he did to Caleb.” Buffy tells Spike before she is back to fighting.
“I thought you killed him?” Spike asks.
“I did but when does that ever stop people in our world. After all I saw you die.” Buffy kills another demon by slicing its head off.
Spike had to admit she had him there. “So what did he do to Caleb?” he asks as a demon slices his coat. “Oy! I love this coat.” Spike runs it through with his sword.
“Apart from beating the crap out of him in like a minute, nothing much.” Suddenly the ground shakes. “About time!” Buffy exclaims.
Angel who has ended up near Buffy “About time for what?”
“Reinforcements.” Buffy states.
Above the din of battle Angel can hear Xander’s voice “All right ladies take them down.”
Angel then catches a glimpse as several dozen slayers start to attack the demon army. They soon fight their way towards them.
“Hey dead boy!” Xander greets Angel. “How’s it going?” Xander stabs a demon attacking Angel through the back.
Angel notices the eye patch. Yeah he had heard about that.
“Ladies form a perimeter.” Xander instructs and the slayers go to work in creating a ring round himself, Angel, Spike and Buffy.
With a chance for a breather Angel remembers Gunn and Illyria. He had lost sight of them in the chaos. “Spike you seen Gunn or Illyria?”
She shakes her head as she regains her breath. “Don’t worry though he’ll find them. Clark!”
Clark appears next to her suddenly. His suit has demon goo on it. “This stuff stinks.”
“I know. God I can’t tell you how many outfits demon goo has ruined.”
“Buffy!” Angel reminds her.
“Oh right. We’ve lost track of the other 2. You know Gunn the bald guy and that blue haired demon lady.” Buffy turns to Angel. “I’m assuming she’s on your side.”
“For the moment.” Angel replies.
Clark nods. “On it.” and he flies off upward.
Buffy watches him go. “That is never going to get old.”
“Niblet?” Buffy hears Spike says. She turns round to find Dawn and Willow approaching. “Dawn I told you to stay home.”
“Yeah you’ve said that before. Besides I’m not actually doing any fighting. See standing right here. Oh hey Spike, hey Angel.”
Xander comes back from the front line. “They’re retreating and by the way did you know Clark had killed like 500 of them already.”
“Yep that’s my Clark. The big softy.”
“What do you mean softy?” Angel asks.
“He was taking it easy. Trust me he can move a hell of lot faster than that when he wants to.”
“Why didn’t he?” Spike asks Buffy.
“What and ruin my fun.”
“Fun? You call facing a demon army of thousands fun.” Spike can barely believe this.
“Yes I do. Trust me it beats training new slayers and setting up new cells which is all I have been doing for the last year.”
Clark reappears with Gunn and Illyria.
“You alright blue?” Spike asks.
“They were pathetic warriors. It was most unsatisfying.”
“Right. How about you Charlie boy?”
Gunn catches his breath “Yeah thanks to Illyria. She saved me.”
“He was Wesley’s friend.” Illyria states.
“Where is Wes?” Willow asks.
“He’s dead.” Illyria answers.
“Oh my bad.” Willow says apologetically.
“So what do we do now?” Spike asks.
“Don’t know. I never actually expected to survive.” Angel tells him.
“You know this is just typical for one of your plans.” Spike complains.
“My plans! I’m not the one who spent 150 years picking totally unnecessary fights.”
“Hey I was just having some fun. You should try it some time.”
“All right enough!” Buffy cuts in. “God you’re worse than children.”
“Spike is not a child. Spike is my pet.” Illyria states.
Xander smirks “Pet? Care to explain that Spike?”
Illyria turns to Dawn and studies her “You are the Key.”
Fear grips Dawn’s face. Buffy narrows her eyes at Illyria “What do you know of the Key?”
“I created it.” Illyria states.
“Who are you?” Buffy demands to know.
“I am Illyria the God-King, the shaper of things. I ruled the world when you were nothing but slime beneath my feet.”
“Well aren’t you charming.” Xander remarks.
Illyria ignores him.
“You created me?” Dawn asks with trepidation.
“Yes. I see you have been remade.”
“Yeah by some monks. They wanted to hide me.”
Illyria tilts her head “Why?”
“A hell god was after me by the name of Glory.”
“Glorificus. That insolent worm. I should have ripped her apart millennia ago.”
“Why did you create me?” Dawn has always wondered about her purpose.
“I use to possess the power to travel through dimensions but my armies could not. I created the Key as the means to send my armies to wherever I desired.”
“You mean I was a weapon.”
“You were the means to open the doorways between worlds but you are much more than that. You keep the worlds in balance. I created you to not only transport my armies but to bring order to the chaos. Before your creation dimensions would bleed into each other. You sealed them up, separated them. With you my control over my kingdom was unquestioned and absolute.”
“I thought you liked chaos.” Spike says.
“I like it when I cause it. My creation of the Key allowed enough stability between the worlds for your pathetic race to evolve. You should be thankful.”
“Yeah we’re all real thankful.” Buffy says with some sarcasm. She turns to Dawn “Dawn you ok?”
“I think so.” Dawn walks up to Illyria “You and I are going to have a long talk about all this though.”
“I liked it better when you were not sentient.” Illyria comments.
“Get use to it because I’m not changing. Are we done here?” Dawn asks Buffy.
“Yeah we’re done. So Angel got a place for us to go?” Buffy asks him.
Angel is curious as to what that whole thing was about but he can ask later. “We could go back to the hotel for now. Give us a chance to think things through.”
Finally Buffy thinks, a sensible idea. “All right then. Xander round them up.”
Xander nods and heads off to round up the troops.
Clark moves forward and hugs Buffy “So you ok? I know how much you want to keep that Dawn is the Key a secret.” When he and Buffy had first met in Smallville they had ended up sharing their stories. They had felt it important to be honest with each other. He kisses the top of her head.
“Sure. I mean Spike already knows and so do Willow and Xander.” Buffy turns to Angel and Gunn “I’ll explain what that was about but not here ok?”
Angel and Gunn nod. They know all about keeping secrets.
“So come on Angel lead the way.” Buffy asks of him.
Angel heads off in the direction of the hotel. It still belonged to him. He couldn’t sell it despite everything that happened. Of course he had a lot of things to consider now. With his signing away of the Shanshu prophecy he was stuck as a vampire. There was now that issue with Dawn being the Key, whatever that means. They still faced the problem of how to keep Illyria under control. A task made harder now that Wesley was dead. She does still seem fond of Spike. Perhaps he could use that. He would have to check up on Connor some time soon and make sure he’s alright. Of course healing from his wounds first would probably be a good idea and then perhaps he would give some thought about what to do with the rest of his undead life.