Chapter Seventeen - Friends and Enemies Part 3
Later in the evening, Buffy and Sam started walking briskly back to campus. Giles and John had called an emergency meeting at the library. As they stopped off a curb, they heard the distinct low rumbling of a car engine. Sam swung around to see Dean pulling up beside them.
“What are you doing here?” Sam asked.
Dean kept his eyes forward, “Dad said I’m supposed to pick you up. Get in.”
“I’m fine walking.”
Dean heaved a frustrated breath, “Why do you always have to be such a bitch Sam?”
“Why do you always have to be such a jerk?”
Dean shook his head and gripped the steering wheel.
“If I had a choice, I’d leave your ass here to die.”
“You always have a choice. So leave, we don’t need you,” Sam barked.
“Get in the car Sam,” Dean said firmly.
“No,” Sam replied.
Dean swept his eyes at Sam. “Get in the goddamn car.”
Sam curled his hands into fists. Buffy gently brushed her hand over his arm.
“Just go with him Sam.”
“I don’t want to,” he said.
“It shouldn’t be like this. You’re family. You shouldn’t fight. Just go, please.”
Sam reluctantly stepped off the curb and circled to the passenger side. He climbed inside and slammed the door. Dean didn’t pull away. He kept his eyes on the road ahead.
“You too Summers,” Dean replied.
Buffy sighed and got in the back seat. The ten minute ride to Sunnydale High was painfully awkward. Sam spent the whole time glaring at Dean. Dean ignored both of them and focused on getting to the school as quickly as possible. When he pulled into the parking lot, he turned the engine off and got out without acknowledging anyone. Sam and Buffy followed until they were all inside the library.
Giles, John, Willow and Kendra were inside. John and Giles were huddled in discussion in the corner when Buffy, Dean and Sam saw them. Dean hung back from the rest of the group.
Giles broke away from John.
“Okay Giles, what’s the sitch? More doom and gloom?”
“Unfortunately, yes,” he replied glumly, “The artifact that John and I have been studying was stolen from the museum. The curator was murdered. The police say he was killed by multiple wild dog bites.”
“Vampires?” Kendra said.
“Did you figure out what the artifact was?” Buffy asked.
“Yes, it’s the altar of Orcus, an Etruscan god of the land of the dead – or underworld. In some translations, Orcus means punisher of evil. Essentially he was a god who unleashed eternal torment upon evil beings in the underworld.”
“Oh, he sounds charming,” Buffy replied.
“There have been stories that during the third century, some military generals paid high priestesses to summon Orcus from the underworld so he would swallow their enemies.”
“There’s the gloom, where’s the doom?” Willow asked.
“There was an inscription added to the original text, a warning. It was written in Etruscan, which the Latin language replaced. If the altar is tainted with the blood of a pure soul, Orcus will rise and unleash torment and suffering upon all innocent life for eternity.”
“So we’re talking a literal hell on earth,” Buffy said.
“Sorry I asked,” Willow lamented.
“You think Angelus stole the altar?” Kendra asked.
“Signs point to a big yes,” Buffy replied, “Willow, let’s move forward with trying the spell.”
“I tink we should try a more effective tactic in stopping him,” Kendra said. She removed a large sword from her duffle bag.
“I’m just forming a backup plan. I don’t know where Angel’s hideout is yet and every time I expect him to show up, he doesn’t.”
“Buffy, are you prepared to stop him?” John asked.
She nodded slowly, “Yes. But if it’s a fight to death and I don’t win, we need plan B. Willow and Sam may have to save the world.”
“Uh, that’s a big responsibility, what if I clam up?”
“You won’t, I’ll be here with you,” Sam said.
Suddenly, an arrow shot through one of the windows and landed inches from Willow’s hand. Buffy ran over and pulled the arrow out. She noticed a scroll wrapped around the arrow. She unraveled the scroll.
“If you don’t want any more blood on your hands, come to the graveyard in one hour, alone.”
“Angel?” Willow asked.
“It has to be. I better go.”
“You could be walking into a trap,” Giles stated.
“I don’t have a choice. I can’t risk anyone else being killed.”
“Oh, now you decide that,” Dean muttered under his breath.
Buffy glared at him but he was staring off at the balcony.
“Willow, how long will it take?”
“Uh, once I have everything I need, it shouldn’t take too long. I could use some more help.”
“Call Xander and Cordy. I’ll try to hold Angel off as long as I can. Let me know as soon as you’re done.”
Kendra grabbed her sword.
“I think it’s better if you stay here, watch out for the group.”
“Dean will go with you,” John said.
“I’ll stay here with Sam and help with the spell.”
“But dad,” Dean whined.
“This is not a request Dean.”
Angelus stood before a stone altar that had a carving of a man engulfed in flames. He looked up to find one of his vampire minions approaching him.
“Don’t disappoint me,” he chimed, “What do you have?”
The minion shakily replied, “The man with the glasses, the one you seek. He and another man spoke of Orcus’ altar.”
“They broke the translation.”
The minion nodded, “Yes. They said to corrupt the altar you need the blood of a pure soul.”
“Are you certain?”
The minion nodded, “The both of them confirmed.”
“A pure soul, that shouldn’t be too hard to find. Bring me one.”
The minion nodded obediently and ran off. A little while later:
Two minions dragged a teenage boy to the altar. The boy was unconscious. Angelus picked up a large dagger and sliced into the boy’s hand. He grabbed the boy’s hand and smeared the blood on the stone altar. Angelus smiled and stepped back to admire his work.
“Mighty Orcus, I call upon you to rise and feed upon these souls for eternity.”
He waited as Drusilla and Spike watched from another room. Nothing happened.
“Why isn’t it working?”
“The blood….the blood is wrong…..he speaks….the blood is wrong,” Drusilla sang.
“I don’t understand; this should have worked. I did everything I was supposed to.”
Angelus punched a wall.
“Oh, is the Latin making Gramps cranky?” Spike taunted.
“I wanted suffering,” Drusilla chimed.
“Oh, don’t worry, there’s going to be suffering. I just need to turn to someone with more expertise in ancient rituals.”
“He dances in my head….he bleeds for her….the Slayer….his heart is pure….he bleeds for her…for all of them….”
Angelus crossed to Drusilla as she swooned.
“Who my love?”
“The one with the Slayer…he has killed our kind…many many…”
Angelus grinned, “Winchester. He’s my pure soul?”
“His blood is right,” she sang.
“Just stay out of sight unless things get crazy,” Buffy replied as she eyed Dean.
They had walked several blocks in silence.
“Whatever,” he said.
Buffy sighed, “What is your problem?”
“I’ve got no problem whatsoever…..let’s get this over with.”
“You don’t want to talk to me anymore? Is that it?”
Dean didn’t answer, just continued to walk. She studied him but gave up after awhile.
“How long are you going to stay mad at me? I mean, seriously, you’re acting pretty childish.”
He scoffed, “I’m acting childish? I’m not the one that got freaky with a vampire and unleashed his evil plan to end the world because I had warm and fuzzy feelings for him.”
Buffy blew out a breath, her brows furrowing with irritation. “You make it sound so meaningless, like it was just some game for me…..I love him – loved him…..and we didn’t know this was going to happen.
“I’m sure if you did, you would do it again,” he said curtly.
“You really think I’m an idiot…..well, I don’t care…Angel and I – we were happy – even if it was just for a brief time...and in that time, nothing else mattered…..don’t you know what that feels like? Haven’t you ever loved someone so much it hurt just to be away from them?”
He looked at her as she looked away.
“Or are you such an ass you don’t feel anything?”
He looked away as her eyes swept toward him.
“I have a heart,” he said softly.
“Huh, could have fooled me.”
Buffy paused at the entrance to the cemetery.
“Are you going to let me die in there?”
After a long minute, Dean drew out a breath and said, “No.”
“Okay, stay hidden but keep your ears open.”
Buffy wandered off into the cemetery.
After five painfully long minutes, Dean sauntered through the cemetery. He heard a scuffling a few feet away and crept along the grass. He stayed behind the coverage of trees until he spotted Buffy and Angelus in hand to hand combat. He blocked her punch combo and grinned. He said something that Dean couldn’t hear. She froze and then suddenly bolted away. He saw the complete fright knitting her face. When he glanced back at Angelus, he was gone.
“Dammit,” Dean grunted.
He took off toward the clearing and barely caught sight of Buffy tearing around the corner. He picked up his pace as she turned in the direction toward the school. She was flying up the steps when he ran across the street. He hopped up the steps to see she was racing into the main building.
Once inside the school, his stomach turned violently. He saw a flash of blonde tearing through the library doors. Dean followed in after her.
He stopped abruptly at the destruction of the library. His heart beat quickened as his eyes swept the room for his dad and Sam.
Buffy was crouched over the lifeless body of the Slayer Kendra.
Dean darted up the steps and through the stacks. He found Willow, Xander and Sam buried under a bookcase. They were unconscious. He checked all their pulses when he heard shouting.
Dean spied behind an open bookshelf to see two uniformed cops, one male, one female.
“I – I didn’t do anything!” Buffy cried.
“Don’t move,” the male cop commanded, “Let’s see your hands.”
The male cop checked Kendra as the female cop aimed her pistol at Buffy.
“We got a dead body,” the male cop said.
Dean slowly crept down the steps. A female officer whipped around to Dean and aimed her pistol. He held his hands up.
“Easy. I’m going to reach into my pocket for my badge.”
The female officer narrowed her eyes as Dean slowly reached into his jacket. He retrieved a slim black wallet and displayed the official looking I.D. The female officer cautiously approached him, tightening her grip. She squinted at the badge.
“Federal Marshall? You seem kind of young.”
“I work the undercover beat….look, I’m here to take this girl into custody so just lower your weapons.”
The female officer studies him, trying to figure him out.
“What do the Feds want with her?”
“She’s wanted for questioning in a federal case, that’s all I can say.”
The female officer lowered her pistol slightly. Dean slipped down the stairs and moved behind Buffy. He removed a pair of handcuffs from one of his pockets. He grabbed Buffy’s wrists and put the cuffs on.
“We got a call about a violent disturbance and now there’s a dead body. We have to take her in,” the male officer replied.
Dean gave a polite smile, “My office has jurisdiction…..if you wouldn’t mind, I’ve got to shuttle this juvenile delinquent into custody.”
Dean nudged Buffy to start walking. As they exited into the hallway, Principal Snyder raced over with more officers. He smiled smugly at Buffy.
“Well, Miss Buffy Summers in handcuffs, there is justice in the world.”
Dean lightly squeezed her wrists and urged her down the hallway.
“Is he with you?” Snyder asked one of the cops.
“He’s a Federal Marshall,” the female officer answered.
“Ah, she’s a criminal at the nationwide level. I should have suspected,” Snyder said.
Dean threw a glance behind his back to see the officers and Snyder following him until he descended the steps. Once they got to the parking lot, he checked back to see no one watching.
“Okay, where did you get a badge and handcuffs?”
“Not important right now. What the hell happened back there?”
“It was a set up, Angel sent his minions to attack Willow and the gang. I need to make sure they’re okay.”
“They’re okay. It looked like they got knocked out. I more concerned about Giles and my dad. They weren’t in the library.”
“Maybe they went after Angel.”
Dean rummaged through his pockets for his cell phone. There were no messages.
“He would have called.”
“Dean? You think you could take these things off?”
“Uh, those things just saved you a jail cell.”
She glared at him.
“Fine,” he said, retrieving the key.
“I want to make sure everyone’s okay.”
“I think you need to lay low for awhile. It seems like everyone in this town is looking for you. I’ll go check on them.”
“I want to go with you.”
“Fine,” he said.
Dean pulled into the parking lot of Sunnydale General Hospital. He eyed the police cars gathered by the entrance.
“Stay here,” he said.
He got out and trudged through the sliding doors of the main entrance. He walked through the hallway spying into each room until he felt a tap on his shoulder. He swung around. His eyes lit up.
He hugged Sam and quickly broke away to examine him.
“Are you okay?”
Sam had a small bruise on his forehead.
“I’m fine, I’m just a little dizzy. Where’s Buffy?”
“Safe. Where is everyone else?”
Sam led Dean around a corner and into a hospital room where Xander was sitting beside an unconscious Willow.
“How is she?”
“She hasn’t woken up yet. She had a pretty bad head trauma. Doctor said if she doesn’t wake up soon….” Xander’s voice trailed off, choked with emotion.
“I’m going to kill that bastard.”
He turned to Sam.
“What happened to dad?”
“Uh, the last thing I saw before I got knocked out was dad fighting some of the vampires. He hasn’t called you?”
“No,” Dean replied.
Cordelia stumbled in, looking dazed. Xander shot to his feet and threw his arms around her.
“Alright, I need to find dad. You ready to get out of here?”
“I want to stay here,” Sam said, “Wait for Willow to wake up.”
“Okay. Keep your phone on.”
Buffy leaned her head against the car window and winced.
“God, this is my entire fault. I never should have let any of them get involved.”
Buffy glanced over at Dean as he pulled to the curb of her house.
“What? No biting comment or insult?”
They got out of the car and stepped onto the sidewalk. Dean tensed and gripped the pistol tucked in his waistband. He pulled the pistol out and swung around to see a guy with bleach blonde hair wearing a long black duster. He clicked the safety off. Buffy twisted around at the sound of the safety and frowned. She jumped onto the guy and started punching him in the face.
Buffy paused when she saw Spike throw his arms up in surrender.
“I’m not here to fight,” Spike said.
Buffy narrowed her eyes, “Well I am.”
She raised her fist.
“Hold on! I come in peace….will you put that down?”
Dean eyed Spike.
“Who the hell is this guy?” Dean asked.
“This is Spike,” Buffy said.
“Spike,” Dean repeated.
“I’m harmless,” Spike said, “So you can put that away.”
Dean took a moment to dwell on the familiar name.
“Wait – as in Spike the one who tried to kill you on parent teacher night Spike?”
“That’s the one,” Buffy said coolly, “Wait, I never told you that. How did you…”
“I’m in the car with Sam all day long. He can’t exactly have private phone conversations.”
Dean closed in on Spike.
“Bullets don’t kill me,” Spike said.
“No but they’ll hurt like a bitch tomorrow. So embrace the pain.”
“Kill me and you won’t find your dad.”
Dean studied him before backing off slightly.
“What are you talking about?” Buffy asked.
“Angel’s got him along with your Watcher. Probably bleeding them dry.”
Dean ripped out a stake and lunged at Spike, pinning him against the car. He shoved the tip of the stake against Spike’s heart.
“You got three seconds to tell me where my dad is before I send your pasty ass back to hell.”
Buffy gripped his arm.
“What’s your deal Spike? Talk fast and you better make it good because I’m having a really bad day and I may just let him kill you to cheer me up. What do you want?”
“The same thing you do, Angel in an ashtray.”
“Since when? I thought you and Angel raised hell back in the day.”
“Well not anymore….I want him dead and gone.”
“Then kill him," she replied.
“I can’t….not alone…not with the two of them.”
Dean drew out a breath, “Can I kill him now?”
“I told you what I want. Will you call off your watchdog?”
Buffy studied Spike, “What else is going on?”
Spike sighed and reluctantly imparted, “I want Angel out of the way so I can put things right with Dru….I can’t stand the way she dotes over him….how she eats out of his hands….”
Buffy rolled her eyes in disgust.
“Well let me put you out of your misery,” Dean said.
“My friends could have died! Some got killed.”
“I wasn’t a part of that ambush, you got to believe me.”
“Hell on earth is afoot and you want to be my ally so you can get your skanky ho bag girlfriend back? You’re pathetic.”
“You’re going to need more than him to fight Angel and Dru. You’re going to need me.”
“Okay, I’m tired of this shit, I’m dusting you,” Dean growled.
Buffy slapped her hand on his arm, “Don’t.”
“You believe this crap?”
“Come on, the enemy of your enemy is your friend,” Spike chanted. “I help you out, you help me out.”
After a long moment, Buffy replied, “Let him go Dean.”
“Oh for godsakes!”
Dean reluctantly released his grip on Spike and stormed around in a circle.
“Let’s hear what he has to say,”
“He hasn’t said one damn thing that’s had any weight.”
The front door of the house flung open. Joyce ran down the steps.
Dean quickly put his weapons away as Spike gathered himself.
“Buffy, I’ve been calling everyone…..the police were here looking for you, asking questions…..where have you been? The police said you did some terrible things. Are you okay?”
“I’m fine mom, I was uh, I was…”
“She was uh- with me.”
Joyce regarded Dean curiously.
“Oh, what were you two doing at this hour?”
“Uh, we were….”
Buffy slipped her arm through Dean’s and cracked a smile, “On a date mom, we were on a date.”
Dean’s eyes widened as Joyce looked at the fake couple.
Buffy elbowed Dean lightly.
“Uh, yeah, I uh, guess we were.”
“Well who is he?”
“Uh, this is Spike, we met him at….the movies….he was by himself and he was crying because his girlfriend dumped him….so we…..asked him to hang out with us….and then we were all going inside to have coffee…”
Joyce looked at Spike.
“Yeah, because I love to wallow in the pain of other people’s happiness.”
Joyce eyed all three, not completely sure what to think.
“Let’s go inside and uh continue our date Dean,” Buffy said, tugging him toward the porch, “Come on Spike.”
As Buffy, Dean and Spike walked toward the front door, three vampires emerged from out of nowhere. They snarled as Joyce froze with fear. The three vamps lunged. Buffy, Spike and Dean took one on and simultaneously fought in a circle. After a few minutes, they managed to kill the vampires.
"Some of Angel's hounds, probably sent to stop you," Spike said.
“Buffy…..what just happened?”
Joyce sat dumbfounded on the living room couch as Dean poured her a drink. Spike sat in the armchair. Dean handed Joyce a glass and then sat on the loveseat across from her. An awkward silence fell into the room. Joyce blinked and slowly took a sip.
“How you doing Joyce?”
Joyce glanced at Dean.
“Dean, did you know that Buffy is a – what did she call it?”
“A vampire slayer.”
“Yes….it sounds so strange.”
“Tell me about it…..but yeah, I’ve known for awhile.”
“Oh….and how long have you been dating? The last I heard she was seeing a boy named Angel…”
“Oh….well I was concerned about her relationship with that boy, he seemed a little old for her.”
“You don’t know the half of it,” he muttered.
“Does your father know that you – fight like that?”
Buffy swept into the room and everyone shot to their feet.
“Willow’s going to be fine.”
She addressed Spike.
“What’s your plan?”
“I help you and the bloke kill Angel, you let me and Dru live.”
“You’re going to kill someone!” Joyce gasped.
“I’m not giving her a free pass for this.”
“Then I’m not helping you.”
“Kendra is dead because of your crazy girlfriend.”
Spike paused, “Really?”
His smile quickly faded when he saw the glaring eyes of the Slayer and the Hunter.
“Kendra. The girl who was killed at your school. You weren’t responsible?”
“Of course I didn’t. Why would you think that?”
“Did she turn to dust like those others outside?”
“No mom, she was like me.”
“Look, if you don’t succeed in killing Angel, then the world ends and we all die, so it won’t matter whether you let me and Dru go anyway.”
Buffy sighed, “Fine…you better make sure John and Giles are okay…we’ll be five minutes behind you….”
“John? What happened to John?”
Spike pivoted toward the door.
“Spike…the lives of John and Giles for the lives of you and Dru – that means alive. You hear me?”
“I hear you,” he said.
He swiftly exited the house as Joyce felt her knees cave in. She steadied herself on the arm of the couch.
“Buffy – I don’t understand any of this.”
“I know it’s a lot to process and when I get back, we can talk about it some more.”
“When you get back? Where are you going?”
“To stop the end of the world,” Buffy replied, starting toward the stairs.
“Don’t patronize me,” Joyce snapped.
Joyce hooked a hand over Buffy and tugged her back.
“I’m not. I’m being serious. I’m the Slayer, this is what I do. For two years I’ve been on the front lines battling evil things that no one should ever know about….don’t you get it now? Haven’t you noticed how high the body count in this town is? Why I come home sometimes with cuts and bruises? Why I really burned down that gym?”
“So you did burn down the gym.”
Buffy gasped, “Mom, you’re missing the point. I know it doesn’t make sense right now but it will….you just need time.”
“No, I need you to explain this to me in a way that makes more sense.”
Buffy sighed, “I need to go.”
Joyce glared at her, “No, you’re not going anywhere until you tell me the truth.”
“I just did. You think I would lie about this? Make up a crazy story? Do you really think I’m that screwed up?”
Joyce didn’t answer.
“I’m not crazy mom, ask Dean. He knows all of this; he’s been a part of this.”
Joyce swung her eyes to Dean, who shifted uncomfortably.
“You let my daughter put herself in dangerous situations?”
“Let is a strong word…”
Joyce backed away, shaking her head.
“We have to go,” Buffy said.
“No,” Joyce barked.
She stood in front of the door, barricading them in.
“No, I won’t let you leave this house. Not until you tell me the truth.”
Buffy bit her lip, struggling so hard not to scream her head off. Dean stepped in front of her.
“Joyce, my dad is in trouble and needs our help…I know that this all sounds like a crazy story but I promise you…..it’s not….so if you could please just let us go we’ll explain later…..please.”
Joyce regarded the worry on his face. She sighed, shook her head and stepped out of the way. Buffy ripped the door open and flew out of the house.
TO BE CONTINUED -
The big showdown between Buffy and Angelus hits an emotional breaking point for Dean....tensions arise in the Winchester family....and Dean will start to own up to his feelings for Buffy....
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