Now all this I heard second hand, so I really can't attest to its veracity. However, this is
Garth we're talking about, so the odds of an outright lie are fairly slim.
He was at his and Mary's apartment sleeping soundly, when the emergency line rang. You see my brother has always had this thing about Batman as a personal hero. So when we, meaning me of course, started getting into situations that required immediate and extraordinary help...Well he had a second phone line installed, and yes, it had a red phone under a bell jar and a ringer that could wake the dead.
Harper's call arrived and he was woken rather abruptly alongside his lovely and talented wife Mary Tree. Yes, that Mary Tree. Yes, the folk singer with all those gold records. Anyway, knowing my love of calling for help at the absolute last possible moment he understood that if that phone rang, I was already strapped to the railroad tracks and the 4:40 from Albuquerque was running on time.
He scooped up the phone and surprised to hear the dulcet yet panicked tones of Dr. Harper Rhys-Whitney, instead of his little brother squalling like a baby. Unfortunately before the connection broke off he was only able to catch two words...Faith...Valhalla.
Now in the Frederickson Bros. illustrious career of international heroism and derring-do, there is one word that will immediately grab our attention no matter what the context, and that would be 'Valhalla'. Several years ago a truly mad, and eventually extremely annoyed and finally very very dead, scientist did some awfully naughty things with recombinant DNA and retro-viral vectors to my brother and myself. We got better (after providing the extremely annoyed and very dead portions of the scientist's resume), but it was a long painful process that damn near killed us with the cure. Since then the Valhalla Project, or simply Valhalla, has become a synonym for utter and posibly total annihilation, and that any means necessary are authorized, including Chant and Lippett being called. Now, Garth has received a call with the doomsday keyword, and a name neither Chant nor Lippett attached...After making two phone calls he kissed Mary goodbye and mumbled something about his dimwit brother being in trouble again before heading to the offices.
He was met at the door by my best friend in the world, Veil Kendry, the recipient of his first phone call and the pair proceeded up to my office where, after removing a business card from my safe, dialed the number.
The call was answered by a young male voice, "IWC."
"My name's Garth Frederickson. I need to speak to Faith or to Dawn Summers."
Garth could hear a computer keyboard clattering away and the sudden intake of air signaling surprise. The voice immediately became more respectful."Ah sir, what does this matter concern?"
"I was alerted to a situation using a keyword that can symbolize global-thermonuclear war or worse. Faith's name was added to this keyword."
"Right, potential apocalypse, Faith's involved. No surprise there...I'll put you through to field command."
There were some buzzez and clicks then another man spoke, "CiC. Xander speaking."
"Mister Xander, I'm Garth Frederickson. My brother and my sister-in-law just called in a crisis using Faith's name and a codeword we use for a potential end of the world. Literal not figurative."
"Frederickson...You're Mongo's brother aren't you? Little D was seriously pumped after she met you guys."
"Yeah that's me. Can you help put me through to Faith? Time's of the essence?"
"Always is...Go to this address in the Village and tell'em Xander sent you," he rattled off a street number, "Back-up will be waiting for you there."
"No problem...Good luck and good hunting."
The pair headed downtown and pulled up in front of a beauty salon called simply 'Pat's'. Therte were lights on in the back so Garth rang the bell and waited. A few moments later two young women unlocked the door and opened it, "Xander sent us."
The women didn't reply, merely stepping aside to let my brother and Veil enter. They walked in and one finally spoke, "This way Mister Frederickson and Mister Kendry," leading the two down a flight of stairs into a surprisingly large room.
"How did you know my name?" Veil didn't sound upset, merely curious.
"Leah picked up your aura when you got within a block. All the girls have heard of your private dojo and would love to train with you."
"Oh yeah! Shelly saw you and Mongo at a meet. She said for old guys you were amazing."
Veil rolled his eyes and Garth snickered, "I get to tell that to Mongo Kendry!"
The room they were led to looked like a combination dojo and armory. Various ancient and modern weapons were set in racks on the walls and the floor was covered with training mats. Six other girls were stretching and adjusting swordbelts and various combat harnesses. A older man was talking on a cell phone and a high pitch whine was building up from a corner.
Veil rubbed his temples as though a headache was building up when the whine stopped, there was a flash of light and Faith and a short blonde suddenly appeared.
The older man said, "They're here," and hung up his phone before walking over to my brother, "Mister Frederickson, I'm John Amsterdam."
"Aren't you on the Job?"
"Yup, Detective Amsterdam, Homicide. I've heard of you too, one of the best ever Detective Frederickson."
"Thanks, but it's just Garth and this is Veil Kendry."
Amsterdam shook both their hands, "Then just call me John. So where's the incident?"
"What!? I was told this was local."
"We have transport, but it won't be ready for another hour or so. A Gulfstream at Newark."
"We can work with that, let's introduce you too the boss. Buffy!"