All characters from the Dune Universe are property of the Frank Herbert Estate. All characters from the Buffyverse are Property of Joss Whedon. Everything else belongs to me.
Once men turned their thinking over to machines in the hope that this would set them free. But that only permitted other men with machines to enslave them.
Reverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohiam
The last time she died the Destroyer resurrected her and gave her a skin suit of white armor. Buffy wore that now as she ran from the Machines of the Synchronized Worlds. She’d grabbed Trinity and ran into the chapterhouse. She could hear the screams of people dying and the discharge of small arms fire. The past came rushing back to her. Her son had let the Machines kill thousands of Fishspeakers so that he could take the throne. She knew just how deadly the machines could be. Thousands of years ago thinking machines had rose and nearly slaughtered the human race. They were the cause of the Butlerian Jihad and the ban against intelligent machines. They were also the keepers of the Slayerverse, of a perfect copy of the lives of every slayer past, present and Future. According to the guardian of that Slayerverse, there was a perfect copy of her living there already.
“How do you fight machines that know how this is going to end?” Buffy thought as part of the wall she hid behind exploded. Shards of reinforced concrete flew into the air. She drew Trinity closer to her. The girl stared past her to the machines beyond.
“Let me go.” She said to Buffy. “They are not a threat. Their power is limited. Compared to me, they are so very small.” Buffy didn’t believe her. She had lost one child to monsters, she was not about to lose another.
“I’ll protect you.” Buffy said. Trinity frowned.
“No you won’t.” She said. Buffy looked at her shocked. The child had no faith in her.
“The Machines already know how this is going to end. Buffy, you are going to chose not to protect me.” Trinity’s words were final. Buffy wanted to pull her closer but it was too late. Trinity wiggled from her arms and ran towards the machines.
“Nooo!” Buffy screamed. She leapt to her feet to chase after the child. She stopped when she saw what the machines had brought.
Before her was a army of devices, many of them tens of meters tall, with organic metal skin and hundreds of robotic tentacles. The eyes of the machines turned to track Trinity. Buffy knew that it was she that they had come for. A cylinder, well over ten meters tall, moved towards Trinity. Its surface was a dirty gray color with flat black writing along its surface. The machine buzzed as it moved. The letters on its skin began to glow. Mystical energies built up around the machine.
“A spell caster!” Buffy thought. She knew that this was a robot designed to use magic. Buffy remembered the vision given to her by the Destroyer. In it, she saw that Mesektet had been locked in the amber of a powerful binding spell. She picked up speed as she sprinted towards Trinity but it was too late. The machine had completed its spell. Amber spat into existence around Trinity. The little girl glowed then exploded into the brilliance of the sun. Buffy shut her eyes as she turned her head. She could feel the fires of Trinity burning against her skin. Buffy opened her eyes. The machines were pools of boiling metal. They had met an Old One and had been destroyed. Trinity turned to her.
“It’s not over.” She said. “More are coming.” At that, the space between earth and sky was torn open by a black portal that shimmered red at the edges. Something huge emerged. A machine ship nearly half a kilometer long emerged into the Arrakis sky. It’s skin was black as space with a slick oily sheen it resembled the slayer ships used centuries ago. Buffy recognized the design immediately. The Machines used ships that could jump dimensions. The slayers had used one such ship to invade Quor'Toth.
“If they have these ships why would they need a Holtzman drive inscribed with a prayer to Eyrishon?” Buff thought thinking of what she had seen in the pit. The ship hovered in the hot air above her. She didn’t hear Basilah walk up behind her.
“They are impressive aren’t they?” She said to Buffy who jumped at suddenly hearing a voice in her ear. Buffy turned to look at the Bene Gesserit. She understood something at last.
“You’re with them.” Buffy said. She was disgusted. Basilah had sided with the machines that had tried to butcher the human race. Basilah smirked.
“You slayers like to think of yourselves as the final authority over all things supernatural. But have you ever asked yourselves what God think of that?” Basilah’s voice dripped with contempt.
“What are you talking about?” Buffy asked.
“She’s talking about me.” Said the little girl that suddenly appeared at Buffy’s feet. “She’s talking about the Powers-That-Be.” Buffy recognized the little girl and her heart nearly broke. The little girl appeared to be five or six years old with short blond hair, green eyes and pale skin.
“Anne?” Whispered Buffy to her grandchild that was one of the Powers-That-Be. “It’s been so long.” Buffy said.
“I know.” Said Anne. The little girl looked thoughtful for a moment. She knew Buffy needed an explanation but she also knew that Buffy was a slayer. The Powers-That-Be had learned the hard way never to underestimate the slayers. It was here on Arrakis that the slayers, along with her father, had slain two of the Powers-That-Be.
“We have a plan.” Anne said. “Well, I have a plan.” Her head twisted slightly as she spoke. “There have been certain developments in the multiverse. Projects started here by the Senior Partners suddenly became available. I took control of those projects to research certain questions about the bonding of sprit and flesh. I need to know nana how do you do it? How do you bind the Destroyer to your flesh?”
“Why don’t you ask the Destroyer how it binds to us?” Buffy asked.
“You are the Destroyer!” Anne screamed as she pointed towards her grandmother. “I must have your secret.”
“You want slayers?” Buffy asked.
“No!” Snapped Anne. “ Not just slayers, we want to manifest fully here. We want to walk in this world as flesh. I want to live in the multiverse not just haunt it. There were Engineers once, in place universes away that built gods and monsters. They knew how to use the dust of the earth to bind the sprit. They knew the secret ways that mere dust could be configured to encage a sprit to create a living soul.”
“The Old Ones?” Buffy asked. “What use are they?”
“Lab rats.” Said Anne as she turned to stare at Trinity. “She’s the closest I’ve come to binding the supernatural to the flesh.” Anne smiled. “She’s a miracle.” She said.
“I can’t let you take her.” Buffy said as bravely as she could. The last Power-That-Be she had fought had come damned close to killing her even with her armor. She was only saved by the sudden appearance of her son and a dimensional blade made from the sharpened tooth of the Destroyer.
“I can give you Liam.” Anne said. Buffy gasped. Her son had died over five hundred years ago buying enough time for the Slayers of Dune the attack the Powers-That-Be.
“He is with me now in the all space. He is worshipped as Eyrishon the endless one. You raised him then erased his timeline. Nana, I can give you back your son.” Anne said. Buffy choked. She was lost for words. She never got to say goodbye to Liam. He had died fighting alongside Dracula against the clone hordes of Sahjhan as he crashed the flagship of the slayer fleet into the leader of the Powers-That-Be.
“No.” Buffy said softly with the last drop of her fading strength. The thought of seeing her son again overwhelmed her. But she knew better. The dead should stay dead. This is what she had told Dawn when she wanted to raise their mother from the grave.
“No” Buffy said again with eyes that were moist.
“Then I am sorry.” Anne said. “Nana, I really am.” Anne waved her hand. Basilah caught fire. Purple white fire burned her body. She screamed.
“I have learned a little of how to bind the sprit to the flesh. It’s not perfect, but she should keep you busy for now.” Anne turned and crossed the distance to Trinity who waited in the sand for her. The two began to walk towards the black oily ship that hung in the sky.
Behind Buffy, Basilah began to change as she burned. Mystical energies were destroying and rebuilding her at the cellular level. The sleeping biological coding left in her from the Wolf Ram and Hart cloning vats came to life in response to the magics of Anne.
Something purple and white and tall rose from the puddle of flesh that had been Reverend Mother Basilah. It growled before it attacked.