The characters of the Alien and the Predator are property of 20th century Fox. All characters from the Buffyverse are Property of Joss Whedon. Everything else belongs to me.
“What I don’t understand is why everyone trusts her.” Gun said as he and Angel walked up to the armory window. “I liked Cordy too, but we all know what happened. She was possessed by one of the Powers That Be and tried to kill us. “Gunn tapped on the armory desktop getting the attention of the being that worked there. A man with pale rubbery pink yellow skin walked over to him. “She wakes up out of a coma after some alien decimates Los Angeles and we believe everything she says as if it was gospel? If you ask me, the Powers That Be are no better than the Old Ones. At least with the Old Ones, you know they want to kill you. The Powers That Be have a habit of talking down to us as if we were children.”
Angel looked at him. He didn’t disagree with Gunn. He had his doubts about Cordelia as well. He couldn’t put his finger on it but his instincts were telling him that Cordelia was leaving out some very important details.
“We don’t have many options.” Angel said. “Besides, it’s good to get out of the office, to actually do something. I’ve been fielding phone calls from every three letter agency on the planet. FBI,CIA,NSA, plus MOSSAD, and the demon power brokers in Los Angeles as well. I need to get out of the office. “Gunn and Angel signed for the phased plasma rifles, portable binding field generators and automated spell casters. They walked over and joined the rest of their team.
“Besides, she promised to make me a real boy.” Angel said. “Once that’s done I can finally put all this crap behind me.” Gunn looked at him. Fighting the good fight was starting to take it’s toll. Both men dreamed of a normal life. Gun patted Angel on the back and checked his shotgun.
“Yeah, Boss but let’s make sure we get this evil moppet before we start looking for retirement homes in Boca.”
“I hear you.” Angel said.
Giles sat the book down. It was useless. “The myths of the Great Old Ones” told him nothing useful for deciphering the dreams Buffy and Faith were having. The things they were seeing in their dark dreams were off the map of his Watcher experiences. The Prophecies given to slayers were typically useful. They were either a warning or a description of some nasty thing. But this was neither. “Messiah will rise. The Earth will Burn.”
“Not particularly useful
.” Giles thought. Giles looked up and saw Faith and Buffy returning from a hunt. He smiled a little. It was good to see Buffy returning to normal. For days she had been a monster called Hive. For days, Buffy was other than human. From what she had told him, the things she had done made Hive scarier than anything she had hunted. That was behind her now. Giles hoped that the guilt of her murder of Willow would also begin to fade. He knew the memory of it would haunt his dreams forever. Giles took another book from the pile. This one was a transcript of a naval expedition to the arctic recovered back in 1951. It was a transcript of the logbook Captain Hamilton Smyth of the “Aurora Dawn”. Giles read the transcript with growing trepidation. Near the end of it he had to lay the transcript down and take a deep breath. Clearly Captain Smyth had encountered something profound and disturbing.
The “ritual of invocation
”. That phrase leapt out at him. He had heard it before. Giles thought hard.
“Of course!” He thought as he scrambled for another book at the bottom of the pile. “It’s always in the index of massacres.” The watchers kept an index of strange murders and ritualistic massacres. The Roanoke Colony in the late sixteenth century in North Carolina held over one hundred souls. They all disappeared without a trace and no sign of a struggle. The only clue to their disappearance was the word “Croatoan” carved into a tree. Their disappearance was a great mystery. Giles knew better. The Watchers council at the time had conducted an independent investigation. They found the bodies, all one hundred and seventeen of them, laid in a circle in a pit with elder signs carved into their flesh. They had been slowly bled to death over a period of three days.
“It must be made red for three days
Giles slammed the book shut. A cold fear like a wet finger slid up his spine. The ritual of invocation was a spell to awaken the Old Ones. This was far worse than anything he had imagined. A dark cloud of fear overcame Giles. That cloud was shattered when Faith and Buffy entered the room. They were giggling over something silly. Their smiles implied that there was some light in the world. Giles knew better. The world was always a dark black.
“So Jeeves, read any good books lately?” Faith asked him. He was glad to see that she was feeling better after drinking so much of Dracula’s blood.
“Just some light research.” He said as he shuffled the book he had just read to the bottom of the pile. He turned towards Buffy.
“Buffy, tell me again about the dreams.” He said. Buffy looked at him strangely. She and Giles had gone over her dreams dozens of times. She took a deep breath and started again.
“It starts as a pressure. I know I’m asleep but I can hear someone talking to me. “Buffy folded her arms around herself as her face scrunched up. Any appearance of joy she had, had totally disappeared from her continence.
“The voice is thick and deep and not quite human.” She said. “The voice says Messiah will rise. The Earth will burn.” Buffy mimicked the voice in her dream. It definitely sounded nonhuman.
“Not quite.” said Faith. She was remembering more of her dream.
“The voice says Messiah will rise then there is a screeching noise then …the Earth will burn.” Everyone looked at each other.
“You think there’s more to the message?” Buffy asked. Giles looked concerned. What could block a direct message from the Powers that Be?
“I could try regressive hypnosis to see if you remember more.” Giles said. Buffy and Faith looked at each other.
“Slayer dream therapy?” Faith said sarcastically.
“Let’s give it a try.” Buffy said. “Fate of the world and all that.”
The watch floated in midair. They saw it as a shimmering golden light. Buffy and Faith relaxed and let Giles voice resonate with them. The minds of the slayers slipped free of the chains of the flesh. The women fell into a waking sleep.
“Tell me your dreams.” Giles said. Both of the slayers heard him. Their minds pulled the information from deep within their memories. Buffy spoke. Her voice was low. It sounded thick like molasses.
“We are not without our mercy.” Buffy said to the air that hung before her. “We could not leave them alone in this terrible place. “ Buffy spoke the words of the Engineers. “We build them an ark.”
“Messiah in the frozen waste.” said Faith.
“Messiah will rise. Our creations, both living and dead, will be saved."
“Unless…unless…” Faith added. When he could gain no more information Giles snapped his fingers awakening the women.
“Did you get any additional information?” asked Buffy.
“Yes.” Giles said. “Just enough to make me really afraid.”
Across the galaxy Illyria dreamed. The blood memories had guided her to the spot. She knew the perfect place and the perfect way to perform the ritual of invocation. It needed to be performed at a place where the wall between worlds was thinnest. It needed to be performed at a hellmouth. Illyria knew she could perform the ritual correctly. Messiah would rise and because of the Powers that Be the Earth will burn.