If you like surprises and don't want to know anything about the new chapter before reading it skip this introduction. ;-)
I finished the next chapter. The first alternate Buffyverse will be in it and we have a guest star:
India Cohen: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/India_Cohen India is 29 years old now. Since India has only been in Buffy books and not the show there is no canon actress for her. Summer Glau has dark hair, fights like a slayer in Serenity and played in a Joss Whedon production. What more do you want? *g*
Anyway, I hope you will like the alternate reality I created and everything makes sense. I have the whole world in my head, but not everything can be put into this chapter or even in the fanfic. The main characters just don't have/want to find out every detail.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask.
The TARDIS came to a halt and Faith glanced at the door. She could be almost home already. They were in Cleveland now, according to the doctor. The question was just if it was the right reality. There apparently were way more realities than she could even imagine. That they found the right one on their first try was kind of unrealistic, but she was a slayer. Slayers were good at beating the odds and she definitely wouldn’t give up hope. Besides, the doctor said he narrowed it down a little. He had examined her with some kind of screwdriver before and said that he picked up some power readings. She guessed he was somehow detecting her slayer powers, but couldn’t be entirely sure. It didn’t really matter anyway. The important thing was that the doctor was trying to choose realities with similar readings.
The doctor looked at his three companions and grinned. “All new reality. I’ve never been here. So… let’s have a look,” he said.
Jack grinned as well. This was his first alternate reality. There weren’t many ‘firsts’ left if you were as old as he was, so he was rather excited.
Martha saw the doctors and Jacks excited looks and started to feel the same way. She pushed away her worries and sadness for the moment. This was why she called the doctor. She had the chance to explore again. It would give her something to do, something exciting and fun, and keep her from thinking about Tom.
The doctor didn’t wait for an answer. He rushed to the door and opened it to peer out. It was dark and they had landed next to a cemetery.
“Feels like home,” Faith said as she stepped outside.
The doctor turned to her curiously. How could she feel if she was home?
Then they heard a scream.
“Definitely feels like home,” Faith stated and rushed off, jumping over the cemetery fence.
Jack admired Faiths jump briefly, then ran towards the gate a few feet away.
The doctor opened the gate with the sonic screwdriver and the three rushed into the graveyard.
“Which way did she go?” Martha asked.
Faith jumped over gravestones and finally saw who had been screaming. A couple was running towards her. They looked scared and hysterical.
“Monsters… run,” the woman screamed.
Faith ran, but in the direction the couple had come from. She heard noises from behind a mausoleum. Once she reached it she stopped.
A woman was fighting two vampires. Faith didn’t know her, but judging by her moves and the way she staked both vampires she was a slayer. Faith smirked. She was really good.
The woman dusted off her trousers, then turned to look at Faith.
“Faith? What the hell are you doing here?” she asked and rushed towards her.
Faith raised an eyebrow. It was dark, but she was sure she didn’t know the other slayer. Probably not her reality then.
“Heard the screams, so I checked it out,” she answered. Maybe the woman wouldn’t notice the difference and she could leave soon. Explaining everything probably would sound weird, even to a slayer.
“You what?” The woman glared at her. Faith had the feeling that she had some sort of problem. Oh no, was she still evil in this world? But the slayer wouldn’t waste time talking to her then, would she?
“You’re not supposed to leave the house.”
Faith stared at her unbelievingly. That so didn’t make sense.
“What, am I under house arrest here?” she asked with a snort.
“Come on, let’s get you home,” the woman said and grabbed Faiths arm to lead her away. Faith however wasn’t in the mood to comply, flexed her arm and moved out of her reach.
“Easy now. I think there’s a misunderstanding here. You see, I’m not…”
Faith followed the woman’s gaze. Four figures were coming towards them.
“You really should have stayed home.”
Faith rolled her eyes. As if she fell through a portal on purpose. Then she saw the figures more clearly and frowned.
“Bringers.” She hadn’t seen them in years, not since they closed the hellmouth in Sunnydale. What were they doing here?
The woman didn’t say anything; she simply looked at Faith, as if to say ‘I told you so’.
“Oh come on, there’s only four of them. We can take ‘em.”
“We? You can barely hold a stake yet and now you want to fight bringers?”
Faith stared at her. What the hell was she talking about?
“Stay behind me,” the woman ordered and rushed forward to fight the bringers.
Faith had never been good at taking orders, especially if they were given in that tone. She rushed forward and threw herself into the fight.
“This way,” Jack called. He could hear fighting noises now. Of course they ran in the wrong direction first. He really hoped Faith was okay.
“One day I’m going to find a companion that doesn’t run off on her own,” the doctor muttered as he rushed into the direction Jack had pointed out.
Jack snorted. “Call me when you do. I want to see that companion.”
The three of them then stopped.
“Doesn’t look like she needs our help,” Martha stated while trying to catch her breath.
Jack glanced at her and grinned. Martha was right; Faith didn’t seem to need help. Neither did the other woman. He had never seen anyone fight like they did.
One of the attackers was down, one for each of the woman, that left one. Jack rushed forward and joined the fight. He hadn’t had a good fight in a while and since the doctor didn’t like guns he’d just have to use his fists.
“Stay back,” the woman called.
“They are with me,” Faith objected. It wasn’t that she knew if any of them knew how to fight, but she didn’t really like the way the woman told them what to do. Neither did Jack by the looks of it. Faith concentrated on her attacker and soon managed to kill it. Then she hurried over to Jack and helped him get rid of his bringer.
When they were done Faith turned around and saw that the slayer had dealt with the last one. Then she stepped towards Faith.
“Who the hell are you? Cause you’re definitely not the Faith Lehane that showed up on my doorstep two days ago. And how did you learn to fight like that?” The woman looked at her suspiciously, but also a little curious.
“Slayer,” Faith stated with a shrug. “And I…”
“Don’t give me that. You can’t be the slayer. I’m the slayer, and since I didn’t die…”
“They are dead, all of them,” the doctor said interrupting them. He got up from where he was kneeling and looked at Faith.
“Yes, they are,” Faith agreed.
“You killed them.”
Faith frowned. The doctor obviously wasn’t happy about that.
“Look, they are evil. They would have killed us and a lot of other people. They have killed many already,” Faith tried to explain, looking from the doctor to Jack and Martha. Somehow it was important that they knew that. She didn’t want them to think that she was a killer. She wasn’t, not anymore!
The doctor frowned, still not liking this.
“They are controlled by the First evil. I’ve fought them before. If they are here this world is in serious trouble, apocalyptic trouble,” Faith stated.
“Maybe she’s right, doctor,” Jack said. “We know nothing about this world.” He also knew that there were creatures that didn’t have an ounce of goodness in them. You either killed them or had to live with the consequences.
“What do you mean; you don’t know anything about this world? Who are you?” the woman wanted to know.
Faith turned to her. Then she saw someone coming towards them. Faith quickly stepped in front of Jack, Martha and the doctor. But then she relaxed. It was Willow. It might not be the Willow she knew, but it was still her.
“India, are you okay?” Willow asked as she came closer. Then she turned to Faith. “Faith? What… how did you get here? I just saw you at the house.”
Faith’s chin almost dropped down. She ignored Willow’s question and turned to the dark haired slayer.
“India Cohen?” she asked.
“I’m fine,” India told Willow. Then she turned to Faith and nodded.
“That’s me. Now that you know who I am, why don’t you tell me who you are and what’s going on?” She crossed her arms in front of her chest and stepped closer to Willow, who looked a little confused.
Faith looked at her and smirked slightly. India had been the slayer before Buffy. Obviously she never died in this reality. Interesting, Faith thought and wondered what happened to Buffy in this world. If she never became the slayer, what would Buffy be like?
“I really am Faith,” she then said. “But not the Faith you know. We’re from another world.”
“An alternate reality,” the doctor added. “Or two, to be exact. We’re not from the same one. We’re just trying to get Faith home. But it looks like we haven’t found the right reality yet.”
India and Willow stared at them.
“An alternate reality?” Willow asked and then turned to India. “You know, like the one that vampire me came from.”
India frowned. “I so didn’t like her.”
“She was gross,” Willow agreed. Then they turned back to Faith and the others.
“So you’re the slayer where you came from?” India said.
“A slayer,” Faith corrected.
“Sorry, but what do you mean by slayer?” Jack interrupted.
“Slayer, as in vampire slayer,” India said.
Martha snorted. “Are you serious?” Judging by the looks she was getting they were. Wow, this reality was strange. Or was it? Were vampires real back home as well? She glanced at the doctor.
“Vampires aren’t real back home, are they?”
“No, they are not. Well, there is an alien race that lives on blood…”
“Alien?” Willow asked.
“Aliens are real, too. Or at least in their reality they are,” Faith said with a shrug.
“Of course they are,” India stated. She had long ago learned that nothing was impossible. So why not aliens?
The doctor smirked. Then he stepped to the side. “Well, it’s been nice meeting you, but we’re obviously in the wrong place here. We better go, lot’s of realities to check…” He also wanted to have a word with Faith about killing these creatures in private.
“No, wait,” Faith said. “We can’t just leave. The First evil is trying to take over here. Lot’s of people will die. We have to help.”
“Another slayer would be good,” India said. It was getting really hard to keep all the potentials safe and still do her job properly. Things had always been hard of course, but lately it was even harder.
“Exactly,” Faith said. “You seriously need more slayers here.”
----- ----- ----- ----- -----AU Cleveland – India Cohen & Christopher ‘Kit’ Bothwell’s house:
The doctor glanced around the living room. There were a lot of girls in the house, maybe 10. He detected some of the power that Faith and India had in them, but not much.
“They are just girls,” Martha said. “How are they supposed to stop an apocalypse?”
The doctor turned to her. “You were all alone and you still saved the world.”
Martha smiled slightly. It still felt good to hear that. “I didn’t do it on my own though. It was all your idea.”
The doctor smirked. Then he glanced at the girls who were watching TV. They were probably 15 to 18. He had seen some older ones, but most were just kids. How could anyone put the weight of the world on their shoulder? Faith and India had told them about the slayer and how she was chosen to fight evil. It was an odd world.
“Do you think it would be the right thing to do to turn them all into slayers?” Martha then asked.
“I don’t know. It seems to work in Faith’s reality,” the doctor answered. Or at least that was what Faith said.
“And it’s their choice, not ours,” he added. He was used to making decisions and telling everyone what they should do, but this was another reality and he would probably never come back. These people had to make up their own mind and live with the consequences.
India Cohen looked at Faith, who was leaning against the kitchen wall casually, drinking some water. She was so different from the Faith she knew. Not that she actually knew her; they just met two days ago after all, when Kit brought her here. He found out about her being a potential and went to get her. He was almost too late. Faith had been hunted by bringers and Kit had to fight them off. He was upstairs in their room, recovering. India’s heart started to beat faster at the thought that she almost lost him.
She sighed and pushed away the thoughts about Kit. He would be fine after all and she had other things to worry about.
“So, you think it would be a good idea to turn all potentials into slayers?”
“Sure,” Faith answered.
India sighed. She had hoped for a little bit more than that. She knew that it would be great to have more slayers that could help in the fight against evil. But it would mean changing their lives forever. Their chance at a normal life would be over. For most of them it would even mean taking away their normal lives. They were past the age of 15 or 16 and thus wouldn’t be chosen anymore as long as a younger potential was alive. She didn’t want to do that. She had once promised herself to try and stay alive as long as possible so no other girl would ever have to become the slayer and go through what she had to go through.
“But it’s not my decision, or yours, it’s theirs,” Faith added.
“You made the decision on your own?” India asked.
Faith snorted slightly. “Me? No, I was a slayer before that. But the others did. They wanted to help.”
“So, you were the slayer before the First attacked?”
Faith nodded. “Well, kind of. I was one of two slayers.” She tried to think of a way to sum up everything briefly, then went on: “One of us died for a few seconds before being reanimated. It was long enough for a new slayer to be called.”
India stared at her. She had never thought about anything like that.
“Yeah, Buffy never did anything by the book,” Faith said laughing slightly.
“Buffy?” Willow asked entering the kitchen.
“Yeah, where is she anyway, haven’t see her in the house yet.”
Willow and India stared at her.
“You mean Buffy Summers?” India asked. “She’s one of us? I mean, she’s a slayer where you come from?”
Faith nodded. “The slayer actually. She was called after you. Well, the India Cohen from my reality.”
Willow and India shared a look, then turned back to Faith.
“Please tell me you’re kidding,” Willow said. “I can’t even imagine what would happen if the fate of the world depended on Buffy Summers.” Buffy was one of the most popular girls in High School, which also made her shallow, arrogant and selfish.
Faith frowned. She and Buffy weren’t really friends, but she did like Buffy and she often wanted to be just like her. “The world would be fine. It actually is. Everything’s good back home. We do have a lot of slayers now and the hellmouth is closed.”
“We closed the hellmouth in Sunnydale, too,” Willow quickly stated.
“This isn’t a competition,” India stated. “Our worlds are different and becoming the slayer changes a person. What we really should be doing right now is try to find out where Buffy is. If she is the slayer in an alternate reality she probably is a potential here. The bringers could be after her right now.”
Willow frowned. “The last I heard Buffy and her best friend Cordelia went to LA to study there. I never heard from either of them again.” It wasn’t like Willow was surprised about that either. They had been the popular girls, while Willow was an outsider.
“I could try and find her on the net,” she offered.
Faith nodded, but felt a little strange. It was really strange to imagine that Buffy and Willow weren’t friends.
Willow then left and Faith followed.
“I’ll talk to the doctor. Once Willow found Buffy someone has to go and pick her up.” They’d be quicker in the TARDIS.
----- ----- ----- ----- -----AU LA:
“So, party at my house on Friday,” Cordelia Chase said.
“Cool,” Buffy Summers answered grinning at her friend. “Please tell me that hot boss of yours is coming, too.”
Cordelia frowned. Ever since Buffy picked her up at Angel Investigations once she was obsessed with getting to know Angel. If she knew what Angel really was she’d probably freak out and run away screaming. It was how she would have reacted before a vampire tried to suck the life out of her and Angel saved her life. She started to work for him later, since her acting career hadn’t turned out to go as well as she had hoped.
“He’s not the right kind of guy for you, trust me on that.”
Buffy frowned. “Why do you keep telling me that? He’s hot and he helps people. What’s not to like about him?”
Cordelia almost snorted. His eating habits for one.
“Oh come on, we could double date. Me and Angel, and you and Doyle. You are still dating him, aren’t you?”
“Yes, I am still dating Doyle,” Cordelia said and a smile appeared on her face. She hadn’t actually paid attention to him at first, but Doyle never gave up. She eventually realized that she did like him as well.
Buffy was about to ask about Angel again when she suddenly heard a noise. “What was that?”
Cordelia turned around, but didn’t see anything. But it was getting dark already, so she knew that just because she didn’t see anything didn’t mean there was nothing scary there. Some things just didn’t want to be seen until they were about to suck the life out of you, eat you or do something just as horrible to you.
“Probably nothing,” Cordelia answered, but hurried to her car quickly. She really wished they had found a parking space closer to the mall.
Buffy followed her friend as fast as she could. Somehow she had a bad feeling, as if something was going to happen, something bad and life-changing. But that was silly, wasn’t it?
Once at the car they threw their bags into the back seats, sat down quickly and closed the door.
“Drive,” Buffy called. The feeling of uneasiness just wasn’t going away.
Cordelia didn’t have to be told twice. They were almost out of the parking lot when two guys jumped in front of the car. Cordelia hit the brakes instinctively. Then more of the guys appeared and came towards the car. They somehow moved oddly. One of them then stepped into the beam of the cars lights and Cordelia saw that he didn’t have eyes.
“Oh crap”, she muttered and stepped on the gas pedal again, running one of them over.
Cordelia drove on fast. “Buffy, stop it. Get my mobile and call Angel Investigations. It’s on speed dial.”
Buffy just stared at her.
“Do it. Now!”
Buffy grabbed Cordelia’s purse and searched for the mobile. Then she called Angel Investigations and held the phone to Cordelia’s ear.
“Angel, it’s me. We’re in trouble…”
She didn’t get to say more as something hit the roof of the car. Then someone appeared in front of it. The next second a tire burst and the car started to slinger.
“Crap,” Cordelia muttered and then quickly told Angel where they were.
“What’s going on?” Buffy wanted to know as the car came to a stop.
Then one of the creatures jumped onto the front of the car and Buffy screamed again. Cordelia locked the doors and prayed that Angel and Doyle would get there in time.
----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Faith watched as the doctor did something at the console. They had gone to find Buffy after Willow gave them her address. But of course Buffy wasn’t home. Now the doctor was scanning LA for her. Hopefully it would work.
“Got something. That has to be her,” the doctor said.
The TARDIS shook slightly. Then it came to a halt again. Faith was at the door within seconds and rushed out. A few feet away bringers were surrounding a car and jumping on it. Faith didn’t waste time and ran for them.
Jack was on her heels.
“Use that gun of yours,” she called before speeding up.
Jack knew the doctor wouldn’t like that, but pulled his gun anyway. Faith was a good fighter, but she was greatly outnumbered.
Cordelia was trying to block out Buffy’s scream as she went through her purse, searching for the pepper spray. She had no idea if it would have any effect on these creatures, but it was better than nothing. She just pulled it out of her bag when the creature that was on the car was pulled away and thrown into another one of them. Cordelia grinned. Angel must be there. She opened the door and got out. Then she heard shooting and got down quickly, hiding behind the cars door. Since when did Angel use a gun? Did Doyle get one maybe?
“Stay down,” a female voice called. Cordelia frowned and peered over the cars door. A young woman was fighting the creatures. Cordelia had never seen anyone move like that. Well, except for Angel maybe. Was she a vampire, too? But there were no other vampires with souls, were there? And why would she help them if she was a vampire?
The doctor stopped several feet away from the fight, holding Martha back. She was a doctor, not a fighter.
“They’ll need you later, if someone gets hurt,” he said.
Martha frowned. Maybe she should have learned how to shoot a gun after all. Watching Faith and Jack take on at least 8 of those creatures and doing nothing to help definitely wasn’t fun.
“Woah,” the doctor then exclaimed.
“What is it?” Martha asked looking at him.
“The bringers… their minds are linked and telepathically controlled,” the doctor stated. “I can feel it.”
Martha stared at him surprised. She knew the doctor had some telepathic powers which he somehow used when defeating the master, but she had no clue how they worked exactly.
“Maybe I can block that connection,” the doctor muttered and concentrated.
Faith just killed the second bringer when she noticed that the other bringers started to moan and sway.
“What’s happening?” Jack asked. He had killed a bringer before another one jumped him. But now it was moving back, holding its head.
“Not a clue,” Faith stated.
“Finish them,” the doctor called, sounding a little strained.
Jack turned to the doctor and frowned. “Are you serious?” Was the doctor actually telling them to kill?
The doctor stepped closer, Martha by his side.
“Do it. I don’t know how long I can keep doing this.” Then he grabbed his head and sunk down to his knees.
“Doctor,” Martha called and knelt down beside him, trying to help.
“What the hell is going on and who are you?” Cordelia chase called. Then one of the bringers stumbled towards her and she used the pepper spray in her hand.
Faith smirked. It was good to see Cordelia again. They hadn’t really gotten along, but that was mainly her own fault, not Cordelia's.
“Nice one,” she said. Then she stepped forward and took care of the bringer.
Jack was torn between helping Faith and rushing to the doctor. But the doctor told them to kill the bringers. Maybe that would help him, too. Jack turned to the bringers and started shooting.
Then the bringers seemed to recover from whatever the doctor did to them and attacked as a unit again. Faith frowned. What did that mean for the doctor? She however didn’t have time to think about it as the bringers all came towards her.
Jack frowned. All bringers were heading for Faith, ignoring him completely. He couldn’t shoot anymore either or he’d risk hitting Faith. He guessed he’d have to use his fists again.
Faith kicked a bringer in the chest and elbowed another one. Then she got hit in the back and fell forward. She turned around quickly, facing her attacker. The bringer looming over her then got pulled away and crashed into the back of the car.
Faith glanced to her left and a smiled appeared on her face.
“Angel,” she breathed. For a moment she just stared at him, completely forgetting everything else. Things really were different here, maybe even better. Angel was alive.
Angel killed the bringer, then came towards Faith and held a hand out to her.
Faith grinned and took it, pulling herself up.
“Thanks,” she said. Then a bringer came at them. Before Angel could react Faith kicked out, twirled around and hit the bringer in the face.
“Nice moves”, Angel commented as he fought side by side with Faith.
“Slayer,” Faith stated between punches.
Angel pushed an attacking bringer away and turned to Faith. “India is dead?” He didn’t really know the slayer well, but had helped her a few times in Sunnydale. When she found out that he was a vampire she decided to let him live, but didn’t really want him around. He could understand that and left for LA.
“Nope, still alive and kicking.”
Angel stared at her a little confused. When a bringer attacked him at that moment Angel seemed to get annoyed and broke his neck. Then he turned back to Faith with a questioning look.
“Alternate reality,” she said with a shrug and followed Angel’s example in breaking her attacker’s neck as well.
Jack killed the last bringer and then turned to the doctor, who was sitting on the ground, looking a little more relaxed. He guessed the timelord would be fine.
“Nice work,” he then said stepping over to Faith and the tall dark-haired stranger.
“Captain Jack Harkness,” he introduced himself. “And who are you?”
Faith turned to Jack and raised an eyebrow. “Seriously?”
Angel frowned, then turned to the car.
“What? He’s hot, isn’t he?” Jack muttered to Faith, while Angel seemed to have decided to check on the people that were in the car.
A car then stopped next to them and a man got out holding a crossbow.
“Am I too late?” he called.
Cordelia chuckled slightly and rushed over to Doyle, throwing herself into his arms.
Angel opened the door of the passenger’s side and peered in. A young woman was sitting inside, looking rather shocked and frightened. It was Cordelia’s friend. Buffy, if he remembered right.
“It’s over now. You’ll be fine.” Buffy glanced at him, then seemed to relax and got out of the car. Angel was glad that she seemed to be fine. Then she threw herself into his arms. Angel was a little taken aback and glanced around uneasily.
“Oh great, now I’m never going to convince her that Angel isn’t the right kind of guy for her.”
Faith turned to Cordelia surprised. “They aren’t together?”
“Not if I can help it,” Cordelia stated.
“You better keep it that way, cause if they have sex… so not a good idea.”
Jack, Cordelia and Doyle turned to stare at her.
“He’s cursed and she’s definitely going to make him happy enough to lose his soul.”
Cordelia stared at her. “That should convince Buffy. Or maybe I’ll just tell her that he’s a vampire.”
“Won’t stop her,” Faith objected.
Cordelia glared at her.
“How do you know that and who are you anyway?”
As Faith started to talk to the brunette Jack made his way over to the doctor, who was just getting up with Martha’s help.
“What was that?” he asked.
The doctor took a deep breath, then looked at Jack.
“The bringers are telepathically linked and being controlled. I tried to block the connection.”
“That didn’t go so well, did it?” Jack asked.
“Not really. Whatever is controlling them is really powerful… and evil. I’ve seen a lot of evil in my life. But nothing like this.”
Jack and Martha stared at him. The doctor had seen a lot in his life. They had even seen a lot of evil together. If this was worse than any of that…
“That’s why you told us to kill them,” Jack stated.
The doctor nodded. He didn’t like killing, but Faith was right, the First, who controlled the bringers, was pure evil. He had felt it. When he interrupted the connection between the First and the bringers it noticed him and tried to take control of his mind. He could feel the darkness seep into his consciousness, trying to control him and make him see things. He had barely been able to stop it. Luckily the connection between him and the First had ended when the last bringer died.
“Come on let’s go and talk to the others.” He gestured over to the group standing on the road a few feet away. He didn’t want to stay longer than necessary and risk that more bringers showed up.
posters / book covers for this chapter: