Disclaimer: How many times do I have to say it? Smallville and Buffy are owned by a group of wealthy and creative people. I am not one of their number.
Flying twenty feet backward, Glory fell on her backside, and the men in the helicopters began firing cannisters of teargas and pepper spray into the crowd. Xander pulled harder at Willow and his eyes were already red and watering just from the barest hint of the chemicals moving in his direction.
It was working at disbursing the normal humans, although some of the mutants were tougher. One girl was closer to the tower than Xander and Willow and she began waving her hands, and a swarm of bees rose from behind her, above the clouds of gas and headed directly for the helicopters.
Willow wearily raised her hand and a wind arose, blowing the bees back at the girl and the mutants around her. Screaming began. Of course, the wind brought with it a stronger concentration of the sprays, and soon it was hard for Xander to see anything.
He lost track of the others, except for Willow, on whom he kept a tight grip.
He saw lightning flash, and a moment later one of the helicopters was falling. People screamed as it hit the ground and one of the rotors came off and exploded. It decapitated several people to Xander's right.
There was silence for a moment, and then the sounds of cheering from the mutants on the ground. It was cut off as the sounds of gunfire from above began to be heard. Mutants began to fall all around him, and Xander struggled to carry Willow to safety.
Sergeant Ian Johnson grimaced at the sounds of gunfire from the other helicopters. At least his crew had been picked for the less ethically questionable task.
He rappelled down the cord as the helicopter above him hovered. For once his job was to save the girl, and he intended to do it.
The odds were too high; according to his commander the girl was a new kind of meteor freak. Normally harmless, if she were to bleed she'd set off some sort of nuclear reaction strong enough to take out all of Metropolis. In that event, the only way to stop it would be to kill her.
It was undoubtedly why they'd put her this high up on the tower; nuclear bursts were more devastating when done from a height.
He had family in Metropolis; everyone on the ship did. None of them would hesitate to kill the girl if they had to. They were professionals, but they also had a personal stake in this. The Luthors had made sure of it.
Saving the girl would be much better, and he intended to do it.
Dropping to the catwalk, he left his safety line clipped. Three of his teammates dropped to the catwalk behind him, assault rifles held ready for anything.
It was Ian's job to save the girl.
It surprised him how young she was. She couldn't have been any older than his niece, and she stood staring up at him with terrified eyes, gagged and tied to a strut like some sort of virgin sacrifice.
These people were monsters, and suddenly the sound of gunfire didn't bother him so much.
He pulled his knife and the girl's eyes widened. He reached down and cut the ropes holding to the spar.
"Are you hurt, miss?" he asked.
She shook her head.
Apologetically, he smiled at her and said, "I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to make sure you aren't cut."
He did a quick visual inspection, and it seemed that she was clean. He turned to the others and gestured. He'd lock a line around the girl, attaching him to her and they'd leave this place behind.
For once, instead of doing wetwork for the Luthors, he'd get a chance to save the girl. It was a nice change.
He stopped as he saw the man in the suit at the end of the walkway.
"This won't do," the man said. "No, it won't do at all."
"Stand down," Ian shouted. "Keep your hands over your head or we will use lethal force."
The man raised his hands slowly, and then he smiled. He looked up at the helicopter, where the pilot had dropped close enough that he could see what was going on.
The forty foot long tongue that emerged from the man's tongue caught the pilot by surprise and a moment later he was screaming as he fell the two hundred feet to the ground below.
The helicopter dropped out of site and it took Ian a moment to realize that he and the others were still attached.
His neck snapped as his body was pulled sideways and down, and he was dead instantly.
Glory rose to her feet, angry. The bald little worm was going to ruin everything.
"You little..." she began and then she heard the sound from above her. The helicopter which landed on her exploded into a fireball that killed the minions around her even as it slowed her down.
By the time she fought her way free of the wreckage, the worm was gone, and Buffy and her Enemy were back on the field. They seemed to be concentrating on getting their people out before the men in the helicopters could murder them, and so Glory grabbed a helicopter rotor and threw it at the third helicopter.
It wen through the glass of the cockpit and bisected the men inside. Their helicopter listed to the side and fell into the last of the helicopters.
The explosive fireballs which followed were intensely satisfying, even if they did take out ten more of her followers.
She grabbed a second rotor and threw it at the back of her enemy, as he was standing up with the body of Rupert Giles in his arms. He saw it coming somehow and turned, hunching his back to protect the older man.
The rotor shattered against his back, shards of metal causing even more destruction to those lying on the ground. There were screams and moans and gurgling sounds in chests. She only had a moment to revel in the destruction before he'd set Rupert Giles off to the side and was heading for her.
He was faster than she was now; between the damage she'd taken and the magic the accursed monks had placed in the sphere, she was only a shadow of her former self.
The troll hammer smashed her in the side of the head before he was even able to reach her.
As Spike reached the top of the tower, he saw that Doc was already waiting for him. in another world he might have been cocky; he might have gone in overconfident and been knocked to his knees for it.
He'd seen what Doc had done to the men in the helicopter, and he knew better than to take him for granted.
"I'm going to get you out of this Niblet," he called.
"You don't even have a soul," Doc said, smiling. "Why would you help her?”
“Made a promise to a lady,’ Spike said. He took a step towards Doc. “Why would you help a crazy hell-bitch like Glory?”
The smile vanished from Doc’s face. “You don’t address the goddess that way.”
“I called her a skanky hell bitch with a bad perm and a lop sided ass to her face. You think I’m gonna talk nice for you?”
The tongue lashed out, as he’d expected. He was ready for it, and he grabbed it with his right hand. He pulled, but there seemed to be no end to it, so he reached into his pocket and pulled out his pocket knife.
“Why don’t you try mine?” Doc said, pulling a much larger ceremonial knife from his pocket. He turned to slash out at Dawn, but Spike leapt forward and wrapped his own tongue around his neck, hauling him backward.
Doc began to strangle, and Spike grinned. He stabbed his pocketknife into Doc’s side over and over again, while holding the end of his tongue with his other hand.
He heaved, and Doc fell over the side, the length of his tongue trailing behind him. He hastily leapt as his foot threatened to catch in one of the loops of the tongue.
Dawn had somehow almost managed to free herself and Spike grinned as he strode toward her. “We’ll get you out of this yet, love.”
It was at that moment that he felt himself being pulled sideways by some invisible force. He hung in the air for a moment, like a bad Warner brothers cartoon. He had time to meet Dawn’s eyes with his own, and then he fell.
As he fell he saw the girl near the base of the tower, her hand outstretched toward him.
The fall seemed to last forever, and the shock of it threatened to knock him unconscious. He managed to hold on to consciousness by a bare thread and he saw the girl sending pieces of metal firing up at the top of the tower.
He was on her in a moment, his hands at her throat snapping her neck. He bit into her and fed, only to cough and stare in horror.
Lights were flashing in mid-air.
He felt sick to his stomach for the first time in almost a century. The rift was opening.
As Glory fell unconscious, she turned into Ben.
Buffy lifted the hammer, ready to strike when Clark grabbed her by the arm. “I thought you told me this guy is an innocent.”
Struggling against him was futile, and Buffy allowed herself to relax. “As long as he’s alive we’re all in danger. Remember what happened to Lana?”
“If we kill him we’re no better than she is,’ Clark said.
Buffy took a deep breath and then nodded. “Most of her threat to the world will be over with by the end of the evening.”
She pulled away from him and bent.
“We’re letting you live,” she said. “Tell Glory that if I ever see her again, she’s dead. That includes you too.”
He nodded, but simply lay there, seemingly unable to move.
“Buffy,’ Clark said, touching her on the arm. Her eyes widened as she looked up into the air. She groaned out a denial and headed for the stairs with Clark directly behind her. She was up a flight of steps when she heard Clark groan.
Glory had mined the tower with meteor rocks, probably to stop Clark from just racing to the top of the tower to save Dawn and superhuman speed before her minions even had time to react.
“I’ll be fine,” he said, backing away.
She nodded curtly and began leaping from spar to spar, trying to reach her sister before it was too late.
The earth fell around him as he rose to the surface. She had called him and he was answering that call. Electrons began to move through crystal circuits that hadn’t seen energy in more than a decade.
Lifting into the air, Jor El began to race through the night skies of Smallville. The Buffybot had called, and it was a call he had to answer.
“They said they’d let me live,” Ben said weakly.
“That was them,” Lex said. “They are heroes, and that makes them a little stupid. Happily, I’m not a hero.”
He held his hand over Ben’s nose and mouth and as the man began to struggle, he said. “The world has to be protected from things like Glory. If Clark or Buffy won’t do it, someone has to.”
He’d never killed a man in cold blood before, and Lex stared dispassionately down at him. The odds were that this man was innocent of any crime other than harboring a monster. Yet that crime alone was enough to ensure that he not see the light of day.
There was a field of bodies all around him, a testament to exactly how difficult the battle had been.
He felt the man expire beneath his hand and he held his hand there longer just in case. Staring up the stairs at the lights in the sky he sighed and picked up his rifle. There was going to be a long run up the stairs, although if he found a place where he could see a shot, he was going to take it. The world had to be protected, no matter the cost.
“What are you doing?” Buffy asked.
“I’ve got to jump,” Dawn said, her face streaked with tears. She glanced down at the carnage on the ground. “That’s me...that’s all me.”
Buffy shook her head. “None of this is your fault. You need to listen to me. I love you...I’ll always love you. This is what I have to do.”
“What?” Dawn asked, staring in her eyes. “No...”
“You have to take care of them,” Buffy said. “All of them. You have to take care of each other. I think Clark and the the others will help. Be strong...Be brave. Live...for me.”
Buffy turned and she thought she saw a dragon flying through the rift.
She ran and jumped.
Jor El was a miracle, a creation of a hundred thousand years of technological advances. He was capable of building an entire fortress in the space of minutes, or turning back time and raising the dead. He could recite the entire collected knowledge of the Kryptonian people.
But his first and most important function had been to transport the infant Kal El to his new home, and that had required the ability to bend space and time, to create warps in space.
The microfractures Glorificus had discovered and were using had been caused by his warp drive more than twelve years before, and the warp had brought along with it the meteors that had almost wiped out the entire town.
His passage had left a permanent scar on the surface of the universe, and the blood of the Key was forcing this scar open.
Yet in this place, there was no hellmouth for the blood to tap into. There was no extra power source for it to use to speed the process along.
When he’d first discovered true love, Jor El had learned that when science and magic clashed, sometimes magic won.
Yet here and now he was determined to prove the opposite was also true.
When magic and science clashed, sometimes it was science that won.
His warp engines blazing, Jor El struggled to close the portal before it grew too large even for his systems to handle.
For a moment it seemed as though it wasn’t going to work. The portal struggled against him, and it was all he could do just to keep it from growing.
He felt her atop him, caressing his surface, and it was all the encouragement he needed to push himself beyond his capacity.
The portal shrank and disappeared into nothingness.
As she fell, Buffy realized that what she’d thought was a dragon hadn’t been anything of the sort. Instead it was Jor El’s ship, and on its back, with one arm raised like a cowgirl on a mechanical bull sat the Buffybot.
The Buffybot grinned vacantly at her as she fell, and Buffy saw the portal vanish moments before she would have reached it.
She suddenly felt a renewed urge to live, but although she was able to take falls of three or four stories easily, two hundred feet and more looked like it was going to hurt.
Closing her eyes at the end, she felt a bitter regret.
It was one thing to sacrifice yourself for the world. It was another thing completely to jump off a tower when an alien spacecraft and a robot sex-doll had already saved the world.
She felt a jolt, and it took her a moment to realize that she as still alive and not in pain.
Opening her eyes, she looked up at Clark, who had caught her in his arms.
“You looked like you could use a hand,” Clark said, smiling slightly.
“Thanks,’ Buffy said.
He set her down, helping her to her feet.
It was only then that she really looked around at the carnage around them. There were corpses everywhere. Smoke and fires came from the hulking wreckage of the helicopters. People had been shot, stabbed, stung by bees, electrocuted and burned. Some had been cut in half by helicopter rotors.
It looked like her own personal vision of hell, and she felt a moment of unreality, as though she was in a dream.
“Willow, Xander,” she said.
“I got them out,” Clark said. “Mr. Giles looked like he’s hurt. We may need to get him to the hospital.”
Staring at the destruction, Buffy wondered how anyone would ever explain what had happened. It seemed impossible, an Buffy felt too exhausted to even try to come up with an explanation.
Hopefully they wouldn’t try to pass this off as gangs on PCP.