Chapter Ten: First Blood
Disclaimer: Xander, Buffy, and anyone or anything else that pertains to BtVS belongs to Joss Whedon. Dracula belongs to the estate of Bram Stoker, or Francis Ford Coppola, or someone I think.
Larry Talbot, the Frankenstein Monster, and some others may belong to Universal Pictures.
NCIS belongs to Bellisarius Productions, and CBS.
Ghostrider belongs to Marvel Comics, Dimension Films, Crystal Sky Entertainment, Columbia Pictures, and Sony (Whew!), and was played to perfection by Nicholas Cage!
This Disclaimer is getting longer than some Chapters I’ve read!
OCs belong to me, and as always I remain…the man behind the curtain.
Chapter Ten: First Blood
First Blood Lyrics
I want first blood (a look in the eye)
First blood, a need in disguise
Bad dog come back for more
First blood, first blood.
Working into the night did little for either the investigators, or the forensic scientists, other than frustrate them. They had learned little more than they had earlier in the day, and the locals had left for the night.
Marie had then cast a spell using some of the wolf fur that had been found in the camp. This gave the team a general location of the were pack. Larry decided that he, and Jamila would be able to track them once they got close enough. Ziva was itching to be of more use as was Connor. Neither was used to inaction. When Larry changed into his wolf form he had surprised Xander. He was not the wolf-man that had been in the movie. He was in full wolf form. His fur was dark brown, and he stood a full five feet at the shoulder. Jamila was an even greater shock fully six feet at the shoulder she was not the modern cat that he had expected. Her honey colored fur was smooth, her tail a short brush affair. The most striking features however were her eight and one half inch upper fangs. The scientific term for her big cat form was smilodon, or saber-tooth tiger! Ziva looked at her in awe and asked if she could go with her. Jamila crouched down inviting the warrior to mount onto her back.
Larry did the same for Connor.
Vlad had given both silver ammunition for their weapons earlier, and had issued each a silver short sword, once he ascertained that both were capable of using them effectively.
Johnny Blaze was having none of this tracking business he was letting the Rider’s senses find the evil. The roar of Johnny’s hell-bike broke the silence. The Ghost Rider looked skyward as if scenting the air. He looked at Dr. Hall and indicated that he should climb aboard. Hall grinned a rictus smile and joined the hellish rider. They roared off after the sabretooth, and the wolf easily passing them. Vlad shifted into wolf form to follow and Marie into that of an osprey. The remaining team members piled into the 1949 Ford, and 1950 Mercury Zephyr that they had brought even Abby, and Ducky.
Gibbs drove the Zephyr, and the Ford was driven by Xander. Xander found it hard to keep up not because the Mercury was faster, but because he wasn’t as insane behind the wheel as the NCIS Agent was!
The Rider and the Doctor arrived at the location of the pack’s lair first. It was an old antebellum mansion sitting on a small hill just above the receding floodwaters. Once it had been a beautiful place surrounded by gardens, and fine old oak trees. Time and neglect had taken their toll. Someone had attempted to restore the manse, but the hurricane had put an abrupt end to that.
Dismounting Blaze stalked to the front door, as he did he grasp the end of the chain that was wound around his torso and lashed out with it. The door exploded inward in a gout of flame. He stopped at the foot of the porch steps. Red Jack stepped to one side sensing movement around them. He smilingly drew his lancet, and scalpel. From the overgrown bushes and from behind the fallen tree limbs in the yard crept the pack members. The shattered doorway framed the figure of a large muscular man. The light of the flaming wood lit the figure in an eerie glow. His dark, dirty red hair and scraggly beard were wild and matted, and the teeth in his terrible grin were filed to a point.
“Who disturbs the rest of Sawney Beane?” he roared.
The Rider didn’t answer, instead he stepped forward. It was at that point that reinforcements arrived in the form of the giant cat, the great wolf, and their riders.
The Dark pack leapt for the Rider intending to take him down first. Johnny may look dangerous, but they knew what their masters were, and they were more frightened of them than they were of this unknown demon.
Soon The Ghost Rider was buried in their shaggy bodies. Ziva and Connor dropped from their mounts and began firing into the pack from cover. The great brown wolf that was Larry shifted back to human form.
“Beane,” he shouted, “It is your time! Justice has come to call. Are you ready to return to Hell?”
Beane growled, and roared back, “Larry Talbot lapdog that you be, ye canna hope to beat a true werewolf in an honest fight, so ya’ bring yon great cat, and some fiery demonkin. I, Sawney Beane call ya’ a great coward, and challenge ya’ ta’ personal combat!”
Neither waited for the other, they shapeshifted simultaneously, but it was the dirty red wolf that attacked first, leaping over the melee that embroiled the Ghost Rider onto the huge brown wolf. Fang and claw were applied by both without mercy.
Jamila had stood her ground guarding her two human friends tearing apart any threat to them with casual easy. Vlad and Marie arrived and joined her.
Both vampires shifted back to human form, but were soon engaged in combat of their own as the forms of the drowned crawled from the waters as zombies.
Bogged down by the flood waters as they were Gibbs, and Xander’s cars were the last to arrive.
Once all of the forces were arrayed full combat was joined.
Gibbs drew a silver-plated saber, and his automatic, stepping up next to Ziva.
Victor waded into the thickening zombie horde using nothing more than his huge fists.
Abby and Ducky had stayed in the car, but the good doctor was firing with surprising accuracy into the wolf pack with an old British service revolver.
Drusilla stayed near the car that held the forensic team savagely ripping into anything that got close enough to be a threat to them.
Xander with his favorite battle axe joined Vlad and Marie against the drowned.
Soon, Xander’s attention was drawn to a horrifying shape crawling out of the water. A huge beast, a partially rotted zombie saltwater crocodile surrounded by several zombified hunters armed with knives, and spears. Vlad and Marie were unaware of the new danger. The White Knight leapt into the beast’s path his axe singing.
Larry seemed to be losing against Beane, the operative word being SEEMED. Suddenly the brown wolf’s jaws clamped down onto the red beast’s throat from beneath. At the same time Larry shifted to man-wolf form driving his clawed hands into Beane’s chest and ripping out his heart.
Finally Marie shouted, “Enough! Know this bokor where ever you are you are no match for me! I am Marie Laveau, and I am still the Witch Queen of this city!” She began chanting in Haitian French. The chant got louder and louder.
As if called by her blood Abby left the relative safety of the car, joining, as she did, her Grandmama in her chant. At first it was only the zombies closest to the two women that began to fall, but like ripples in a pond the chant reached out farther and farther, until none of the drowned remained animated. The croc-zombie, and the hunters were the last to fall.
Xander sighed with relief.
Only one fight remained The Ghost Rider, had been joined by his chosen ally. Jack the Ripper had come out to play! Johnny’s Chain and his Penance Stare were working their way through the wolves, but the doctor was a sight to behold as well. In his left hand he held a cold iron lancet, in his right a silver plated scalpel. A barely visible reddish mist danced before his eyes, as he dodged ad whirled at dizzying speed, each of his strikes appearing to cut where they would do the most damage. Soon the combatants were back to back. Their attacks were devastating, and when they finished none of the wolf pack had survived.
It was time to assess the team’s welfare. Jamila had taken a severe cut from a zombie wielded hunting knife on he left flank. Ziva had a broken left arm, and Xander had several cuts, and bruises most of which were healing rapidly, only a single deep cut from a silver steak knife on his chest was still bleeding. Doctor Hall had many scratches and bites from the werewolves, which he was cleaning with a solution of alcohol. He already knew from experience that, for whatever reason, he was immune to lycanthropy, so the only thing he was worried about was a mundane infection.
Abby stood by Marie she was shocked at the power that she had felt run through, and from her, shocked but exhilarated. Though Gibbs, and Ducky were busy caring for Ziva’s arm, Gibbs looked up at HIS Abby with both wonder, and a bit of worry.
Doctor Hall walked over to Xander, and without a word, bandaged his chest wound, then proceeded to clean and disinfect Jamila’s flank. Larry shifted back to human form his wounds healing as he did. He looked regretfully at the carnage around him. Realizing that he still held Beane’s heart in his hand, he dropped it to the sidewalk, and crushed it underfoot. All of these weres had probably been a fairly peaceful pack before the coming of Beane. They were led into the Darkness, depraved, and subjugated until the only recourse was their utter destruction, what a waste. Victor covered in zombie goo, and many small wounds stood at the waters edge on guard, he lifted Drusilla onto his broad shoulder like she was a child.
Far above them their true enemy watched. The creature did nothing at the moment, but watch, and plan. Assessing its opposition was all it was interested in. Beane had been a fool, and a liability because of his ego, and excessively brutish nature. It next would use the Frenchman, and the German, two more egotistical fools. London was its next target and both of them hated the English. It would bide its time and reserve it’s most skillful minions for the final strike, at these so-called Nighthunters, and their new allies.
Subtlety, it knew, was the key to success. One need not use an axe when a needle will do.
(Author’s Note): Alexander "Sawney" Beane was the legendary head of a 48-member clan in late 15th- or early 16th-century Scotland, reportedly executed for the mass murder and cannibalization of over 100 people. While some historians believe that Sawney Bean never existed, his story has passed into legend and is part of the Edinburgh tourism industry. The story appears in The Newgate Calendar, a crime catalogue of the notorious Newgate Prison in London.