(Sunnydale, warehouse district)
Xander paused as he turned around the corner. He noted Mears and Robins standing outside of the bigger warehouses and quickly raised his hand and stopped the other two from following, keeping close to the wall he watched as a third and fourth person joined them and after thinking hard for a few moments he recalled the names it was Wilks and Williams.
This did not bode well if they were working for Mears. He took careful note of the way they were dressed. Wilks looked the strangest as he was in a white shirt, black coat and pants and the only thing missing was a tie. His hair was slicked back with gel. Robins gave him even more of a chill, as he noted the long broadsword he carried, the skull helmet on his head as well as what looked like animal skins. Williams was dressed in a t-shirt and jeans, but what made him standout was the mask with the red eye down one side of his face. He knew the profile well, having played the games as well as watched the film. Mears himself was dressed in a very familiar outfit, it came straight out of one of his favorite films and just catching the look on Mears faced confirmed what he knew in his heart. Mears had just become insanely dangerous, as had Wilks, Williams and Robins.
He turned away and pulled his phone out and called Willow, when she answered he told her to stay away from Mears and his group until they could formulate a plan. Of course Willow reported Buffy wanted to act so he summoned the Doctor inside him and ordered them to stay where they were out of sight. He heard Willow's slight gasp and felt slightly guilty, but knew it was best. Turning to watch again he watched the three walk away, closing his phone he walked out.
"I take it we have more trouble than we thought?" Cordelia inquired, not surprised with the tone Xander had taken with Willow, as she knew Buffy would not like staying back and waiting.
"Serious trouble," Xander responded, still very much under the influence of the Doctor inside him.
Tara noted this and stepped up to his side and grabbed his hand. She was slightly worried that her lover's personality could be so easily subsumed by that of the combined Doctor he had become on Halloween. She wondered what that meant for the rest of them. Sometimes she swore she could hear Dawn's voice in her head. It troubled her deeply. Clearly the goddess was still with her in some way.
Shaking her head she watched as Buffy began to stalk towards them, clearly angered by Xander's order to stay back. Willow was following, looking unsure, but what added to her unease was the anger she could see on Oz's face as well.
"What the hell did you think you were doing ordering us to stay back and not take the geek out?" Buffy demanded, once she had reached them.
"Yeah, we could have had him dealt with already," Oz growled, very much under the influence of Van Hellsing.
They were interupted by the sound of the Tardis arriving and they all turned to watch the blue box appear. The door was all but thrown open and surprisingly Joyce charged out sword in hand followed by Dawn with an axe and then Giles who also carried an axe. Lastly the Doctor and Rose walked out shutting and locking the Tardis behind them. Joyce had paused as she noted the group infront of her and sighing she lowered the sword and seemed to lose a lot of tension.
"Mom, what's going on?" Buffy asked.
"We came to help once the Doctor returned with a list of some of the evil personalities Ethan used for his spell," Joyce answered as the others joined her.
"That is why I stopped you attacking them, Buffy," Xander put in. "I recognized the costume Mears was still wearing and we are in no way equipped to deal with him," he added at her look. "Robins was dressed strange and almost familiar and was carrying a very brutal looking broadsword," he added.
"That would be the Kurgan," Joyce stated, the hate and anger in her tone clear to all and shocking Buffy who like Dawn had never heard her mother talk in such a way before.
"The other person I recognize was Williams. He was still dressed as Kano from the Mortal Kombat games. Maybe he likes the mask or it has been bonded to him. I don't know, but from this point on all of them are far more dangerous than ever before," Xander continued his tone dark and serious.
The Doctor was not surprised to see some of his ninth persona come out of Xander as the situation grew bad, it confirmed what he had feared and that was that the Halloween spell had a huge impact on the young man's life.
"So what do we do?" Willow inquired.
"For now we watch them and try and catch them in the act of doing something, but I suggest we plan to bring them down," Giles spoke up. "We all have talents to bring to this, we have time on our side in more ways than one," he added. "It will not be easy, but I am sure in the end we will be successful in stopping them," he said with conviction.
"And what if Mears recruits some more help Giles?" Oz asked, annoyed by the plan, but he could see the sense in it and did his best to ignore what his new instincts were telling him.
"Then we call in some help of our own. Remember it is not just evil people Ethan chose, but good ones as well," Giles shot back. "I am sure some of them will help us if need be, as most of them owe us their lives," he reminded them.
"Ok then I suggest we head back and get started," Xander cut in before anything more could be said. "We know where their base is now. I suggest we keep a close eye on it," he added, as he walked to the Tardis with Tara and Cordelia in tow.
The Doctor quickly unlocked the Tardis and waited until everyone was inside before he followed them inside. As the Tardis began to disappear Warren Mears and his friends reappeared and watched.
"So the do-gooders have found us," Warren spat, having suspected that Summers and her friends would get on their case in time, as they were well known to do those things. He had come back because he had been sure he had sensed someone watching them, and he had been right.
"Don't worry mate, they won't be much of a threat by the time we are done with them," Williams stated, drowned out by the Kano persona.
"They can easily be dealt with," Wilks agreed, as he considered their options.
"No, we need some help with this," Warren disagreed with a shake of his head. "The way they vanished is familiar and worrisome," he explained at their looks. "Let's see who else we can recruit into this," he stated, before he turned around and left again.
Everyone was sitting at the table and was reading whatever information they could get on the various bad guys Ethan had used for his spell. The one that chilled both the Doctor and Xander was of course the Master. The Doctor recalled how he had reacted when Ethan had admitted this to him. He was not pleased by his response, but considering the danger the Master represented even in such a limited way was troubling him.
Having seen the affects of his combined ninth and current incarnations in Xander and what he had just witnessed made him worry what kind of affect the Master's personality would have on whoever had bought his costume. He leaned back in his chair as the many clashes he'd had in his long life with his former friend came back. Each time he had barely come out the winner.
On the other side of the table Xander was also going through such memories. He was very nervous going up against the Master as he was not the Doctor, but a shadow of who the Doctor had been and currently was. He did not think he had what it took to deal with such a dangerous personality, but if it came down to that, he would do his best no matter the cost.
"Blasted idiot," Giles cursed as he noted another name of the list. "Ethan must have lost his mind when he compiled this list," he spat and began to pace.
"What is it Giles?" Dawn inquired, wondering who else Ethan had used for this madness.
"He did not just use human villains and heroes, but demons, vampires and aliens as you know." Giles stopped pacing and faced them. "He has brought back Lothos, a master vampire Buffy slayed five years ago. He also had some of Merrick's things," he informed them all.
Everyone watched as Buffy's face drained of all color as she heard the news. Joyce pulled her eldest daughter into a hug which Dawn quickly joined.
"Are you trying to tell me my first watcher is out there Giles?" Buffy asked in a small voice, her own personality drowning out that of Selene at this revelation. "As well as my first real enemy, the monster that killed him?" she added.
"I believe there is a very high probability of that Buffy," Giles replied with a sigh, as he moved over and knelt in front of her. "I am sorry Buffy. I know the memories of those events still haunt you, but I need you to work through it," he told her. "The more I read of this list the more troublesome this situation becomes," he stated, to which Buffy just nodded.
"I'll do my best Giles," she responded with a grim smile.
"I suggest we take a break," Rose spoke up, sensing the tension in the room and not liking it one bit.
"I think Rose is right," the Doctor agreed. "We need time to come to grips with this, as well as relax as best as we can," he added. "Xander I need you to come with me," he stated, as he headed for the Tardis. "Rose, stay here. We'll be back soon," he ordered as he noted Rose rise to follow them.
Xander nodded, gave Tara a quick kiss and the followed the Doctor into the Tardis. He watched as the Doctor began to set the controls, he had a feeling he knew where they were going.
"What was that about?" Cordelia inquired, glancing at Rose and then Tara.
"I don't know, but I suspect it has to do with the fact one of the Doctor's greatest enemies was used as well," Tara guessed, worried by how this would affect Xander. Cordelia and Rose exchanged worried glances, before trying to distract themselves with reading. Rose however recalled Romana saying something about the Master before they had come here. She wondered what kind of history lay between the two Timelords. She worried how it would affect the Doctor.
Romana looked up and was surprised to see the return of the Doctor so soon and right in the middle of the newly finished council room. She glanced to her left and right and noted the expressions of surprise on the rest of the council and almost smiled. The Doctor, no matter what he had been through in his long life, still seemed to care little for the authority of his peers and still seemed to like showing up unexpected.
They all watched as the Tardis finally fully appeared in the centre of the council chamber. The door soon opened and the Doctor exited followed by another surprise in Alexander being with him. Some of their fellow Timelords were wary of Alexander due to how he had become a Timelord, as well as the fact he was a combination of the Doctors current and former personalities which could make him unstable. However everyone on New Gallifrey knew they owed not only their lives, but their entire civilization to him, dangerous though his actions had been, it had worked and the best part of the Timelords had survived the Time War.
"Doctor, Alexander," she greeted. "I did not expect you back so soon, have things on Earth been sorted?" she inquired before she noted the seriousness in the face of her old friend.
"I am afraid not Romana, infact the events on Earth have become very dangerous indeed" the Doctor replied as he glanced around the assembled council members.
"How so Doctor?" Flavia asked, wondering what kinds of problems were affecting Earth now.
"Some of the personalities chosen by the chaos mage Ethan Rayne for his spell are true evil and I am sad to report one of those personalities is a Timelord, who has done great evil in the past," the Doctor answered grimly.
"Which Timelord, Doctor? There have been many renegades who had dealt much harm to the universe at large, including at one time yourself," Thalia pointed out.
"Yes that is true, but this one is beyond all others," the Doctor responded, ignoring the slight dig at his past actions. "His actions have destroyed countless lives and planets. He has tried again and again to gain control over this council, he had allied himself with our worst enemies when it has suited him," he explained.
Romana looked down in pain, as she realized exactly who the Doctor was talking about. ‘It had to be him didn't it?' she thought. The most dangerous Timelord ever produced had in a way been brought back. That meant they faced a great danger.
"You mean the Master, don't you Doctor?" she said, cutting of Flavia who had been about to speak. "That is who you speak of, this is a troubling thing," she added with a shake of her head.
"More than you know, as I said he has used evil personalities from Earth and elsewhere, including vampires, demons and aliens," the Doctor warned them. "Combined they could bring the Earth to ruin, knowing the Master as well as I do, he will attempt to find some way off the planet," he continued.
"But this is not exactly the Master as we knew him, is it Doctor?" Thalia asked. "The spell broke and now some human is walking around with his memories and skills. That does not mean he will do what you suggest he will," she argued.
"You fail to understand just how much the spell affected those who were changed. Alexander will tell you that sometimes he does not know just who he is," the Doctor shot back, slightly annoyed that some of the council did not understand the true affects of the spell.
"He's right. The Doctor's memories and personality sometimes overtake my own," Xander stated, looking each of the council members in the eye. "It is hard to separate who I am and who he is. At night I relive the Doctor's past as if I was there," he continued. "If this is happening to whoever dressed as the Master, then it will be just as bad if not worse for him, and there is the danger that he will be actually overcome by the personality of the Master," he warned. "He will be as dangerous as he ever was. Do not fool yourself into thinking otherwise or you may doom my world and people," he stated.
The council members looked at each other, some in worry and some in uncertainty. Romana herself agreed completely with the Doctor and Alexander. The Master in any given form was a danger the likes of which always brought great destruction and death, leaning back in her chair she wondered what they could do to contain him.
"What do you wish of us Doctor?" K'anpo inquired, leaning forward. "We cannot directly interfere with events on Earth, you know this," he reminded his old friend.
"I know, but the Master is one of us no matter what form he takes and that means it is our duty to stop him," the Doctor responded. "I want your permission to do just that. No matter what it takes," he requested. "I know with the council restored you will be watching me closely, so I came to give you advance warning," he explained.
"Very well Doctor, do what you must," Romana said, after exchanging looks with the others and gaining nods of agreement from them all. "Help the humans gain control of this situation and deal with the Master as best you can. If he has consumed the life of the human who became him during the spell bring him back to us and we will do what we can to help," she ordered.
"Thank you," the Doctor responded with a nod before turning and entering the Tardis again, followed by Alexander.
Normally the Doctor would not have even bothered to ask permission from the council, but considered everything that had happened he believed he needed to keep on the council's good side and he needed to ensure Romana remained head of the council. Going against her orders and wishes would not do her any good. Quickly setting the controls to take them back to Earth, he glanced up as Xander leaned against the railing looking concerned.
"How do you plan on stopping him?" Xander asked, locking gazes with him.
"Anyway I can Xander," the Doctor answered. "Anyway I can," he repeated to himself as he flipped the control to start their journey back to Earth.
Romana watched the Tardis vanish and wished the Doctor and his friends luck. She knew they would need all the help they could get. She was somewhat surprised the Doctor had come here to ask permission and warn them of the danger, but then maybe he had changed after everything he had been through after all.
Warren smiled as he walked down the street with his group on the lookout for new allies. He was keeping an eye out for anyone who may still be wearing some part of their costumes from Halloween. He also knew he would have to look into some of the more dangerous places to find those who had been transformed into demons and vampires. Once he had his allies he would destroy Summers and all of the people helping her and he would create an empire for himself.