Prologue - Jail
This is an AU, supposing that Buffy the Vampire Slayer
ended after season five with “The Gift.” NOTHING in seasons six or seven therefore happened for the purposes of this story. Buffy was never brought back from Heaven, Tara never died, Willow never went dark, the Watcher's Council was not destroyed, and they never tracked down the potentials.
Most of the story takes place during the Dark Angel
timeline, or 2021 AD, between seasons one and two of the show. However, the prologue takes place right after "The Gift" at the end of BtVS season five.DISCLAIMER
I don’t own any of these characters. Joss Whedon and James Cameron do.
Buffy Anne Summers was laid to rest in the Sunnydale cemetery next to her mother Joyce. It was a small funeral. Cordelia, Angel, and Wesley arrived from Los Angeles to join Giles, Dawn, Willow, Tara, Xander, Anya, and Spike for the nighttime ceremony. No one else joined them. No one knew how to contact Riley and they certainly didn’t expect anyone else to show up. All of them cried for her without shame.
Only now that she was dead did they realize that she was what they lived for. Really, what had their lives been before she’d come into them? Giles’ only job was to teach her, guide her, and protect her. Willow, Xander, Angel, Cordelia, and Wesley had been sucked into her life without warning and Spike, Tara, and Anya went along for the ride. Had Buffy not been a part of their lives, Dawn wouldn’t even exist.
Huge heavy burdens had descended on their shoulders as soon as they watched her body fall gracefully into the portal. Willow and Tara wondered if there had been some magical way to close the portal. Giles wondered if he could have trained her any better. Xander wondered if he had had powers of any kind, would she still be alive? Anya wondered why everyone around her was dying. Angel, Cordelia, and Wesley wondered if she’d have had to sacrifice herself if they’d been there to help. Dawn wondered why Buffy was dead and she was not. And Spike wondered why he hadn’t been able to save her.
Angel couldn’t stand to be in Sunnydale with Buffy gone. He took Cordelia and Wesley and fled back to Los Angeles as soon as the funerary services were over. He felt guilty over abandoning his old friends and Dawn, but the memories that Sunnydale held for him were now more painful than he could bear. He knew that they would find their own ways of dealing with Buffy’s death. Running from Sunnydale was his.
Once he was back in the city of angels, he knew that he had one last person to tell. He dreaded going to the women’s prison – dreaded what her reaction would be. But Angel didn’t have much time to brood, for in no time, the girl who called herself Faith Wilkins was across the glass from him with a phone to her ear.
“Hey big guy, what’s up?”
Angel didn’t return her cheeky smile, not that he did usually anyway. “How are you?” he asked.
She shrugged. “Can’t complain I guess. Three square and a bed with no demons on my tail. More here than in Sunnydale anyway. Did the crime, gotta do the time, right?”
He tried to smile, laugh, anything, but nothing came. “Yeah.”
Faith knitted her eyebrows worriedly. “Angel, are you okay? I mean, you seem more broody than usual.” When Angel shifted uncomfortably in his seat, Faith’s heart sunk. “Oh God. What happened?”
“I just got back from Sunnydale. Another apocalypse.”
Faith tried to ignore the dead look in his already dead eyes and smiled hestitantly. “Just another day on the homefront. What was the deal? Vampires? Big scaly demon? IRS agents?” She laughed at her own joke. Angel didn’t. Faith sobered. “Come on Angel, it’s Sunnydale. This kind of thing happens all the time. Everyone’s okay right? The world didn’t end so I’m assuming we won.”
Angel’s dark eyes filled with tears and Faith’s blood ran cold. She had never seen the vampire cry. “It was a God. She captured Dawn – Buffy’s little sister. She’s actually the Key and Glory used her to open a portal between our dimension and Hell. It was going to suck everything into Hell if it wasn’t closed. Dawn’s blood opened the portal and only when her blood stopped would it close.”
Faith was shaken, trying to absorb this information. “Dawn’s dead? God, poor B.”
Angel couldn’t meet her eye. “Dawn’s fine. The portal was closed before she bled to death.”
“But then how…?” Suddenly Faith was shaking her head and tears fell on the cracked linoleum table. “No…please, no.”
“She had to. She had to close the portal. But she wouldn’t let Dawn jump so it got her instead.”
“Oh God.” Angel had never heard Faith sound so broken. “Buffy. What the Hell was she thinking? We need her!”
“That’s exactly what she was thinking, Faith. Hell. It was either her or the world. But there’s more.”
Tears ran freely down her cheeks now. “What else? Did Xander die too? Or Giles or Willow? Who else is dead?” she demanded.
“No one. But Buffy is. She was the Slayer.”
Faith nodded. “So where’s the next one? Has anyone found her yet?”
Angel shifted uncomfortably again. “Um, no. Faith…”
Suddenly she looked up and her eyes met his. “I’m the next one,” she whispered softly. “I’m it! Buffy’s replacement has already been called! And then I was her
replacement. Angel, I’m the only Slayer left!”
Faith looked worried. “But what good am I to anyone? I can’t slay vampires in jail! Angel, you have to do something. I can’t be the only Slayer and be in jail. Sunnydale will explode or something. The world will end before you know it!”
Angel noticed the guard on duty glaring at Faith as she ranted. “Shh, Faith, calm down. There isn’t anything we can do about it now. But I’m sure we can figure something out. I’ll talk to my police contacts, see what I can do about getting you released on parole.”
“And what should the world do in the meantime, huh? Maybe you can send out a memo to all the demons and tell them to cool their jets for a while. How’s that sound?”
“Faith – ”
“Time’s up!” barked the guard.
Angel stood up reluctantly. “I’ll come see you again soon.”
Faith smiled sadly. “Okay. Angel I, I’m really sorry that I couldn’t be there.” She looked young and lost. “Was it a nice ceremony?”
Angel smiled a little and nodded. “Very much so.”
Angel let himself be led away, glancing back at the very upset Slayer he left behind. The Chosen One was alone again. He’d do everything in his power to help get her out of prison. She was their only hope now.