Disclaimer: I own nothing. BTVS belongs to Joss Whedon, et al. The Southern Vampire series (aka Sookie Stackhouse books) belongs to Charlaine Harris. I bow down to the greatness of Whedon and Harris. I own nothing. All characters from belong solely to their creators, I am merely borrowing them. I make no money from this, please don't sue.Author's Note:
Caution! The updates will be sporadic (read very far apart). I have a very hectic life, so my rare updates can be annoying. If this makes you crazy, consider yourself warned ... anyway on with the show ... Also I've lowered the rating age - but later chapters may need a higher rating. Prologue
Dawn fought against the arms that held her, tears streaming down her face, and screamed helplessly, “No! We can't leave her!” Her pleas cut through the hearts of the passengers on the bus, but Xander and Giles held fast.
“No, Dawn,” Giles’ voice choked as he tried to contain his sorrow and impotent rage. “It's too late. Buffy is gone. Oh, my dear child if there were any way to save her ...” He faltered into silence.
“Dawnie, she wanted you safe, and she wanted you to live your life,” Xander tried to reason with the hysterical teen. “She knew the odds were astronomically stacked against us, but she got you out. Now we have to let her go.” Blood, from one of the many cuts on Xander's face, stuck to his hand as he gingerly released one hand from Dawn and used it push his blood encrusted hair away from his face. The dark haired carpenter smiled ruefully, “She's earned her rest.”
Xander felt the tension ease from Dawn's body as she sagged against him and began to sob. He held her in an awkward one armed embrace and stroked her long hair. He let her cry until there were no more tears. He forced his mind to focus on anguished girl, refusing to focus on Buffy or Anya. His own grief would have to wait. The bus suddenly careened to a halt, spinning sideways on the intact asphalt.
Faith stepped out of the bus first, carrying the Scythe that Buffy had thrown to her as destruction rained down upon them. She whistled appreciatively at the gaping hole that had once been ‘Sunnyhell.’ “Damn B, you know how to make an exit.” Faith looked sideways at the exhausted and bloodied Watcher as he stood beside her to stare into the newly made abyss. She raised an eyebrow, “I guess we won?”
Giles swallowed as he took in the carnage and replied stiffly, “At too high a cost.” He couldn’t bring himself to speak any further as he turned and stumbled back to bus. There were still wounded that needed tending. Buffy’s loss meant that these children, these Warriors
, could live to see another sunrise, he wouldn’t fail her now.
Willow moved among the wounded survivors on the bus – too few, so many of the newly activated slayers had been lost; she triaged on the fly and stabilized the worst injuries with murmured spells. Giles and (surprisingly) Andrew worked with her to keep their remaining Slayers alive. The harder she worked, the less she had to think about Buffy. She paused suddenly, looked at Giles and questioned hopefully, “You don’t think she could …?,” the red haired Witch couldn’t complete her sentence.
Giles mournfully shook his head. “No. Even for her there are limits.” The bus was quiet, save for the muffled cries of wounded. They were all wounded.
Dawn shook off Xander’s protective arm and pressed her face against the rear bus window. Come on Buffy, climb out of that hellhole. Come back to us. New tears streaked her face and blurred her vision as she watched for her sister.
Buffy groaned in pain as she felt something sharp dig into an open flap of skin along her cheek. She struggled to raise her body and bit back another moan as fire raced through her agonized muscles along her devastated nerves. The battered blonde lifted her head, opened her eyes to darkness and waited for her enhanced vision to adjust. She turned her head to either side, rolled from her stomach to her back and carefully sat up, As she took in her surroundings she exclaimed, What the …?”