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The Hunters

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This story is No. 2 in the series "The Slayers of Dune Book IV". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: The last Slayers of Dune set out to defeat the Old Ones.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Literature > Sci-Fi > DunenedwardsFR131314,7800142,11218 Feb 1330 Jun 13Yes

chapter 13

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.




“Death is your Gift.”

-BTVS S05E18






Abd found them in the medical bay. He was been left behind to tend the “Liam Atreides” while the slayers were on Tleilaxu. Internal sensors had alerted him to the sudden appearance of three bodies on the ship. Only two slayers had gone down to the planet. He scanned the medical center with cameras routed to command. He was relieved when he saw it was Buffy and Surayya. He didn't recognize the boy that was with them. He made his way to the medical center and watched as they placed the boy on the table. Buffy hovered over him. The boy looked strange. His limbs were distorted. They looked twisted as if something was growing out of him. A scalpel blade broke against his skin. The medical instruments gave readings that were not to be believed. The slayers looked panicked. What strange disease had they encountered on Tleilax?

Surayya looked at Buffy. There was panic in her eyes. She knew what this was. Once before, over ten thousand years ago and Old One had infected an employee of Wolf Ram and Hart. It transformed the body of the infected woman into food. It killed her when it was finished. Now the boy had the same disease. She reviewed what the medical machinery was telling her. She knew it wasn’t good. He was being cooked from the inside out. His organs were being rearranged into a nonhuman pattern. Surayya sneezed. She covered her mouth then looked at her hand. It was covered with blood.

“What is this?” Abd asked. He stepped closer to the slayers.

“It’s the end.” Buffy said. This was the real danger of the resurrected Old Ones. They were biological in nature. They infected everything in sight. Buffy recoiled at the thought of trillions of humans being turned into monsters. She was about to speak when the ship shuttered. The” Liam Atreides” jerked like it was in the jaws of a great beast. Everyone was knocked to their feet. The ship shuttered again. Buffy made it to her feet. She activated the external monitors. A vision of horror filled the screen. The planet Tleilax was covered in a sick yellow white pus that reassembled the secretion of a sore. Buffy increased the magnification. Things that looked like ancient sea creatures with tentacles and spikes were crawling out of the planet. The Old Ones were rising. The “Liam Atreides” was hundreds of thousands of kilometers above the planet. Buffy did the calculations in her head. Her jaw dropped. These Old One’s were kilometers across, they were huge.


The single cell organisms they had built from mystical atoms in their labs were suspended in a nutrient mix and placed into the warheads of thousands of missiles. They seeded the burning Earth below them and waited. In less than a year they were rewarded beyond their wildest dreams. The Great Old Ones exploded into existence under the thumb of a ruthless process of natural selection. Using the magics build into the atoms of their genes, the Old Ones speciated to capture the niches of the magic that powered them. They were a curious mix of form and function and magic. They were power made flesh.


Buffy remembered the words from another universe.

Something thin and pale like a jellyfish hundreds of meters wide briefly went across the screen. When it touched the shields the ship shuttered. She suddenly understood how far behind the curve she was. Buffy looked around. Abd was on his knees. Surayya was coughing blood. She knew her friends only had hours before they became monsters.

Buffy examined herself in the Bene Gesserit way. She knew she was infected. She could feel the magics of the Old Ones attempting to corrupt her cells. Her body fought back. It did to the cells what she had done to Basilah. Her cells were transforming the magics of the Old Ones into something harmless and in rare cases transforming them into additional power she could use.


“I’m safe.” Buffy thought as she watched thousands of monsters rise up from the planet. “How do I save the human race?” She felt so alone. “Looks like I’m the one girl in the world with the speed and the….” Her thoughts trailed off. She knew what she had to do.

“I have to share my power.” She thought. Buffy turned and rapidly went to Surayya. She cradled the slayers head in her lap. Buffy whispered to her.

“I have no choice.” She said. “I am the law. But I love you. I’ve lost so much. I’ve lost Xander and Willow and Giles and Spike and Tara and Angel, my mother and my sister. I’ve lost my son. What I do, I do in love.” Buffy whispered her last words in her ear then laid Surayya’s head down as she stood and dressed herself in a space suit. She made her way to an air lock and without hesitation ignited the explosive bolts that blew her into space. Her tiny figure tumbled towards the planet.

For hundreds of years it had been building within her. Her son had told her that the slayers created by Leto still contained the magics of the amulet used by Spike at the battle of Sunnydale. Now that power was hers and because now she was Kwisatz Haderach she could be in many places at once. Her powers unfolded like a great flower as the Buffy expanded, then expanded again through higher dimensions. In less time than it took to think about it, Buffy touched the hundreds of trillions of humans in the galaxy and the biosphere of planets and injected a taste of her power into them. She immunized the entire galaxy against infection by the Old Ones.

But that was not enough. She loved one special monster very much but the demon age was over. She was now the emissary of the Destroyer. She had taken the nikah, a promise so binding that it resembled marriage. She had made a promise to the Destroyer.

“Goodbye Surayya.” Buffy thought. “I love you.” The power of the Kwisatz Haderach wrapped itself around Surayya in the ship far above her and Surayya disappeared.

“There’s only one thing left.” Buffy thought as she fell through the Tleilax sky. Her heart fluttered like a soft hummingbird as she remembered what she really was. Buffy unleashed the beast within and exploded like a minor star against the surface of the planet melting the crust and killing the Old Ones. For decades afterwards, where Buffy had touched it, Tleilax continued to burn.

“For Liam…” she thought.



Epilog

They watched her walk into the steich. Abd and Spike watched Buffy walk away from them. She had been silent during the flight back to Arrakis. She explained to them what she had done. The Old One’s were dead. Surayya was gone. Buffy refused to explain how and why. All she would say was that Messiah was coming and that Anne and Trinity would still have to be dealt with.

The steich of the Bene Slayers was quiet. Everyone froze or scurried out of the way of the emissary. Buffy grabbed the first nervous girl she saw by the wrist.

“Show me.” She said. “Show me where she’s buried.” The girl agreed. Buffy followed her into a secret chamber beneath the steich. It was a bubble of no-time hundreds of meters wide. There was a shrine in the center of the chamber. It held the bones of Surayya Atreides. Above her crypt were the words, “She saved the world, a lot.” Buffy grinned and then she sobbed. She pressed three hidden buttons. The top of the crypt slid backwards. Buffy punched through the false bottom. There, as shiny and new as the day it was buried with her five hundred years ago was the scythe. This was how Buffy killed her. She returned Surayya back to her own time to live a full rich life. She had no choice. The Destroyer had called her the permanent apocalypse. He told her that because it never failed, the permanent apocalypse was love.

“Thanks Suri.” Buffy said. She pressed the buttons again. The top of the crypt returned. Buffy took one last hard look at the bones of the girl that was the first of the new slayers then turned and walked away.



Before

Colette looked up. Her mother had appeared out of nowhere.

“Where have you been?” The girl screamed as she ran into her mother’s arm. “You’ve been missing for days.

“I was away child.” She said. “I had to help out an old friend.” She said. Surayya lifted her gaze to stare at Buffy and Dracula. “You’ve got a long road ahead of you Buffy.” Surayya thought.

She held her child close to her. She was glad to be back home.

The End

You have reached the end of "The Hunters". This story is complete.

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