Hey y'all watch this!
Disclaimer- I do not own Buffy, Angel, or Highlander. All hail Joss Whedon the Magnificent, and Davis-Panzer productions! Please don't sue me. :-)High above the Earth and in a sideways direction, someone watched the threads of fate weave together. The being frowned at the pattern, and there existed a brief eternity of thoughtful silence before a loud ‘twang’ was felt throughout the universe- and one of the threads shifted slightly.
'I hate airports.' Adam shifted his 6’ frame in the hard seat as he watched his departure time change again. 'Is it really so hard for these bloody Americans to run things on time?' He glanced over the rest of the board, noting all the other flights still said ‘On time’. As he sighed and leaned back again, his phone rang. Reading the caller ID, he smiled in surprised delight. “Pierson speaking.”
"Hello Adam. I realize I haven’t called in a while, but I need some help. I am trying to track down Professor Ridcully- I heard that you had worked with him recently, and hoped you might have his number."
“Sorry to be the bearer of bad news Rupert, but he’s on assignment in the middle-east, rather out of cell range at the moment. What did you need help with?”
"Translation of a thrice-be-damned prophecy. I don’t suppose you know any other translators in California that might be able to help? I’d really like to send it to the Council, but the owner doesn’t want to part with it for that long- I wish you could take a look at it."
“If it’s that important, why don’t you drive it down to LAX? My plane doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.” Adam smiled wryly at the board.
". . . Really? I thought you were still in Paris? Why didn’t you tell me you were in the area?"
“One day conference, I flew in yesterday morning, lectured all day, and then crashed from jet lag. I might be able to wrangle a flight change, if you want to bring the manuscript down.”
"Are you sure? I really need help with this, but I don’t want to cause you trouble."
“Not a problem, there’s another flight at 8 o’clock tonight; the Council will cover the cost of the switch.”
"I’ll call you when I reach the airport then. Thanks, Adam."
* * * *
Adam leaned back in his chair, satisfied. “I must say, Rupert, that is the finest steak I have had in years. Now, I think it’s about time to have a look at that prophecy of yours.”
Giles leaned back in his chair as well. “I suppose you’re right.” He leaned over and grabbed the briefcase next to his chair, placing it on the table.
Adam frowned at him. “Why the sudden reluctance? You were quite insistent earlier.”
Giles took off his glasses and started cleaning them absently. “I did a quick translation from a dictionary earlier. The prophecy seems to involve the current slayer, and . . . well, it predicts her death.”
Adam hissed in sympathy. “A prophecy of your slayer, dying. That’s hard, Rupert. Where is this prophecy from?”
Giles put his glasses back on and popped the locks. “See for yourself.” He smiled bleakly as he swiveled the open briefcase so Adam could see the contents.
Peering at the contents, Adams’ eyes widened. “That’s the Pergamum Codex! It hasn’t been seen in over four centuries! Where on earth . . .” He trailed off as he saw Giles’ face. “Rupert, prophecies are very often wrong, or don’t even come true.”
“This is the Pergamum Codex. There is nothing in it that does not come to pass, Adam.” Adam opened his mouth to argue, but stopped when Giles leaned back, despairing. Adam went back to studying the ancient book, carefully opening the text and flipping through the pages until he reached the bookmark. He read carefully once, then again, frowning deeply. After he finished, he sat back in the chair, thoughtful. “Well? Did I translate it correctly?”
Adam looked up at Giles startled out of his thoughts. “No.”
Giles gaped at him. “No?”
Adam smiled. “I’m afraid, Rupert, that your slayer is likely going to outlive the Master, and a good deal many more vampires like him.” Giles sat with a thump, bewildered. Adam watched him process the news, the hope and relief washing over his face like a tidal wave.
Giles took a deep breath, and shook himself. “Right then, that’s the good news. What’s the bad? Somebody is supposed to die, yes?”
Adam frowned in thought again. “Death is used as a proper noun, as a name. More accurately, it says: In the Master’s lair she will meet Death. Though, it doesn’t specify who Death is, and most chaps with that nickname are usually rather unpleasant.”
Giles stared off into space for a long moment, then ‘hmmm’ed. “Adam, would it be possible for you to do a spot of research in the council archives for me? Perhaps see if you can at least narrow down the list of possibles for me?”
Adam shrugged. “I’ll see what I can do, at the least I can set some of the regular researchers on it.” He looked at his watch and made a face. “Unfortunately, we’d better get moving if I’m going to make my plane. Rupert, this has been a most interesting challenge, thank you. Shall we?” Smiling, Adam gestured at the restaurant exit.
Giles collected the book and closed the briefcase, smiling back. “We shall.”
* * * *
Giles was shaking his head as he picked up the ringing phone. Buffy and Willow could be heard out in the main library, talking about shoes. “Hello?”
"Hello, Rupert! It’s Adam. I’m not finished with that research yet, but I thought you might want to know what I’ve got so far."
“Of course, anything, please.”
"I can’t find any references of a ‘Death’ anything ever being associated with the Master. Also, the only references I can find of anyone calling their self just ‘Death’ in that time period . . . well, they are all talking about the Four Horsemen."
Giles took his glasses off and rubbed the bridge of his nose. “Are you sure? No one has seen any of them in better than two thousand years. It’s still not certain if they were demons or immortals- the chances of it being that particular ‘Death’ are pretty low, Adam.”
Adams’ sigh could be heard clearly. "I am quite certain Rupert. I need a favor from you."
"Find me a two bedroom apartment by next week. I’ll explain why the council is sending me when I arrive."
Giles looked at the phone in dismay. “A week, Adam?! You aren’t asking for much, are you?”
Adam laughed. "Ta, old man."