Disclaimer:Buffy the Vampire Slayer
is owned by Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy Productions, 20th Century Fox Television and others.EVE Online
are owned by CCP GamesStargate SG-1
is owned by MGM Television, Double Secret Productions and Gekko Film Corp.Betas:
Allen Baker and Greywizard. They really helped.Note:
I'm planning on aiming for a new chapter every 2-3 days. Though I doubt anyone will complain if I'm taking less time.
Colonel Maybourne was running.
Approaching what looked like an abandoned, or at least dark buildings, his hopes went up a little. Finally, he’d found a potential place to hide.
He entered the building, quickly, yet as quietly as he could. Though he would never have admitted doing so, he was cowering in fear, hiding. And whimpering. Then again, he was literally at his wits end.
He had been running for the past 2 hours, being chased by some sort of monster, right out of his worst nightmares. To make matters worse, there were other things out there, he’d heard their animalistic growls and yells. And occasional screams, too. It was as if there were several packs hunting him, but one of them seemed to be chasing off the others, wanting him for itself.
That just scared him even more.
He was out of ammunition. What he had, hadn’t lasted long. He’d emptied his first magazine into the … thing when he first met it. It hadn’t said anything, merely growled, and if possible, it just looked even more pissed off.
He had then proceeded to empty his remaining two magazines into it, on the off chance that they’d have better luck stopping it than the first one.
Then he threw the gun itself. It was a good throw, all things considered. It hit the thing right between the eyes.
Whatever it was, it had just looked him, then his discarded gun, then at its previously pristine leather jacket, fingering the holes he’d made in it and snarled something along the lines of, “That is just another thing I’ll have to carve out of your hide.”
Maybourne couldn’t be entirely sure, he’d been too busy running away at the time.
As he was whimpering, he kept muttering to himself, “Maybe this time. Maybe, I got away.”
It lasted for about 5 minutes.
That’s when he heard that deep growl, and that cold puff of air on his neck as it spoke.
Colonel Maybourne was still running.
Angel slowly walked out if the shadows, looking in the direction of the running man. He turned and looked back in the direction of Sunnydale, they’d managed to cover an impressive distance in the past few hours, he really had to commend the military for keeping their men fit.
He took a deep breath he didn’t really need, and set after the man. He’d better start chasing him back toward town, since they had to be back in Sunnydale before sunrise in a few hours.
Besides, he was certain the other military men, who had, after all, saved Buffy’s life, would be more than interested in this sorry excuse for an officer.
Willow and Xander broke out of the atmosphere only a few minutes after taking off, the fate of Buffy weighing heavily on their minds. Xander already had a few ideas as to what could be done, provided they actually had the equipment ready on their ships. Getting it back to Earth without being noticed, that was the problem. He knew Sunnydale citizens were oblivious to the strange, but he was certain that parking a 200 meter long Mobile Command Centre above the city would get somebody’s
“Willow?” Xander asked, testing if the communications was working.
“I’m here. I’ve started the Directional Scan to see what we have in range.”
“Good, let me know if your ship is in range as well. I’ll get started on approaching our ships. Without scan probes or fixed coordinates, it’s going to be hell to nail their position.” Xander replied as he warped off. “We might need a safe spot to park the ships, afterwards. Can I get you to find an appropriately deserted spot somewhere outside the orbit of Mars?” he finally asked.
“I’ll get right on it. Should I come back and help here when I’m done? I doubt we’re in a hurry with my ship; I found her at 8.5 AU from Earth.” She checked her map. “She’s apparently parked somewhere near Saturn. I doubt anyone on Earth will be able to spot her there,” she snickered. She was already approaching Jupiter at this point.
“Lets hope you’re right,” came Xander’s reply.
They kept chatting while they worked on getting close to their ships. After a little under an hour, Xander finally managed to get a warp target only some 200 km off and started burning towards it at sublight. It should never have taken him this long.
Then again, he
had never done this before, so being rusty might be excused.
He finally made it, and stored their location in his memory, just in case, before boarding his Charon Freighter. Willow arrived at his location and started boarding the Nyx. She couldn’t use all the ships systems, but she was skilled enough to run even Gallente Super Carriers. That, she would at least be able to move.
They had been spending the time during their approach discussing what the best course of action would be once they got to the ships. And after some time, settled on using the Nyx as an improvised War Barge, to drop off an MCC. It was a huge gamble - at over 200 meters in length, the MCC was hardly easy to hide, even with the benefit of a cloak.
The larger concern was dropping the Nyx into low earth orbit, even for just a minute. It might have been hard to see when it was at the moon, but at 3.3 km in length, it would be visible to the naked eye when it arrived, merely 200 km above the surface, while hoping the Russian MIR would be well hidden on the other side of the planet.
As neither of them had any extensive training on mercenary equipment, they had to settle for the most basic available. It would still neatly overpower anything the US military could throw at them, short of perhaps tank rounds, missiles or heavier ordnance.
The plan was to drop off the MCC, and have Willow double back with the carrier, and return with a shuttle, carrying a new pod in the hold for Buffy to use.
The plan had gone pretty much without a hitch.
They managed to deploy the MCC, and starting to descend over the Pacific ocean, headed towards the American west coast. They had been painted by radar pulses a few times, but there was nothing they could do about that, except hope they only appeared to be a glitch.
It was well into the night already, making it that much easier to park and cloak their MCC just north of the town. They had decided on using a drop ship to move about, as it was fast, agile and reasonably tough. Sadly, none of them had ever flown one, so the first few minutes had Xander hanging on for dear life, while Willow kept yelling at the uncooperative controls.
Had he been able to do so, Xander would have been talking to the designers, sharing some interesting ideas for improvements.
Their plan was to approach the Sunnydale Airport, and land the ship under cover, approaching the Galaxy C5 which they assumed belonged to the same people Colonel O’Neill served.
While Willow managed to land the dropship, the quiet part was lacking somewhat in terms of success. She ended up plowing straight through one of the aircraft hangars, coming to screeching halt not 300 meters from the C5.
“You think they know we’re here?” Willow asked sheepishly, pointing at the people running towards them.
Xander jumped out of the craft and approached the welcoming committee, arms wide and hands forwards, mirroring Colonel Jack’s gesture from earlier.
When the rescue personnel finally saw Xander’s armor, they immediately pulled back, allowing the armed guards to take point.
Xander activated his external loudspeaker, “I’m Xander. We,” he gestured at the drop ship behind him, “are looking for a Colonel Jack O’Neill. We met earlier this evening.”
The armed guards didn’t move, but another figure, wearing the same type of uniform he’d seen Jack’s team use earlier, moved forward. “I’m Colonel Barnes, how can I help you?”
“As I said, I’m looking for Colonel Jack O’Neill. We were involved in a little problem earlier today, and we had to leave before we could make sure the area was clear.”
Xander was trying to decide just how much to share, when the Colonel interrupted his thoughts, “You’re one of the pod people.” Not so much a question, actually, as a statement of fact.
Xander winced. “We prefer ‘Capsuleers’,” he corrected Colonel Barnes. “Would it be possible for you to call him? I should be able to positively identify myself.”
Barnes only looked at him for a few seconds, before pulling out his radio and started to speaking into it. Finally, his focus returned to Xander. “You left something behind,” he said, clearly wanting Xander to fill in the blanks.
“A dazzling blonde in dire need of medical attention, and a pair of guns you’ve never seen.” Xander paused briefly, then said, “One of O’Neill’s men was hit, as well. How are they?”
“Lieutenant Brooks didn’t make it,” the colonel’s face fell. “He was a good man. Your blonde is currently with Colonel O’Neill at the army base infirmary. I don’t know how she is faring at the moment, but last I heard her injuries were severe.”
Xander tensed, as did Willow, who had been listening in. Xander gestured at the radio in the Colonel’s hand. “Please tell O’Neill that we’re coming over.” He nodded at the Colonel in respect, and started to walk back to the drop ship turning his head to the Colonel, “And please tell the grunts to hold their fire.”
Willow took off too quickly and almost ended up making the drop ship stand straight up on its tail, before finally managing to get it under control, turn it around and head towards the army base.
To Xander, that had been the most hair raising maneuver he’d ever experienced.
However to the people on the ground, it looked like one of the crazy maneuvers their helicopter pilots would sometimes perform to impress their peers, perfectly executed.
“Willow. when we get back, you are going in the simulator, and I’m not letting you out for a week!
” Xander screamed over his comms.
“No. When we get back, I’m going to rip this junk apart and beat it with a very big hammer ‘til it learns how to fly properly. And I’ll get Buffy to help!” she replied, sounding every bit as agitated as he felt.
The journey only took few minutes. When they were approaching the Army base, they spotted the infirmary right away. Xander noticed some people standing outside. and zoomed in via his visor. He recognized O’Neill standing next to an imposing black guy, wearing of all things a sweat band on his head.
“Willow, just hover above them. I’m dropping in. Meanwhile, see if you can land this thing.”
Once Xander was happy with their position about 300 meters above the entrance, he jumped. Not taking any chances, he activated the inertial dampener early, slowing down his descent. His impact with the ground was still significant, even though he barely felt the impact, as the inertial dampener did its job, bleeding off excess energy in a bright blue flare.
Jack was talking to Teal’c outside the infirmary.
He really wished he could have had the blonde girl in a proper infirmary, like the one they had at the SGC, but there was no way they’d be able to transport her. From what he understood, she should already have been dead several times over, but somehow, her body managed to fight off the trauma she’d suffered. The message from the doctor had been clear, if she could keep that up the rest of the night, she might
“You know, Teal’c. I really hope that that Xander guy comes back soon, or that his girlfriend in there survives. As much as I hate bureaucracy and politicians, I don’t think I like the prospect of Capitol Hill being ‘Glazed over’ as he put it.”
“Indeed. That would be most unfortunate,” Teal’c stated dryly. “CaptainCarter’s father works there, does he not?”
Jack looked at his friend, incredulous. There were times where he couldn’t tell if the big guy was serious or joking. There was a very good reason for the persistent joke at SGC, that if Teal’c ever wanted to play poker, just hand him your chips and spare yourself the humiliation. Luckily, the big guy preferred spending his time watching Sci-Fi movies.
They were suddenly interrupted, when an armored figure literally dropped out of the sky, a bright blue flare between him and the ground, briefly lighting up the nearby area.
The armored figure got up from his crouching position and slowly approached. “Colonel Jack O’Neill, I’m Xander,” the figure stated, getting right to the point, “How is she?”
Meanwhile Teal’c was alternating between looking at Xander and the vehicle hovering high above them. “Chel’nak,” he said after a while.
Jack motioned Xander forward, leading him to the door. “Not good, I’m afraid. The doctor is doing his best, but he has warned us that it might not be enough.”
“I have something that might work.” Xander replied patting one of the packages attached to his belt. “Please take me to her, now.”
“Follow me.” Jack led them though a few corridors before coming to the room where Buffy was being treated. He introduced Daniel and Carter, who were sitting outside, before leading Xander into the trauma center itself.
Xander spotted Buffy immediately, and rushed over to her. The doctor and nurses tried to block him, but Jack barked a command, telling them to stand aside.
“I’m so sorry for this, Buffy,” Xander said quietly while removing the medical tool from its holster. “And for this. I hope it works,” before slamming the needle into her chest above her heart. The unit replied with a chirp right away, so he pulled it back out and stepped back a little, allowing the doctor to approach.
He kept an eye on the vital signs on the monitor. He had no idea what most of it meant, but it looked like the heartbeat was getting faster, and stronger, before she suddenly sat up and started coughing violently. She spat out an ugly blob of blood, before dropping back in her bed, unmoving, but still alive.
The doctor rushed forward, and pushed him further aside, and started checking over Buffy. After a short while, the doctor looked at Xander’s armored form, shaking his head.
“Whatever you just did, probably saved her life. Her vitals are stabilizing remarkably fast.” He looked at the tool in Xander’s hand, “What did you do?” he asked.
“Honestly? I have no idea,” he looked at the unit in his hand. “All I know it that it’s a battlefield medical unit, using nanotechnology to affect emergency regeneration.” He turned it around and showed the doctor a label, written in a language he’d never seen.
“It literally translates to, ‘Insert pointy end into victim, and press Repair’
.” He then placed the tool back in its holster, and slowly moved towards the bed, reached out and held her cheek.
“Hang in there, Buffy. Please.”
Behind him, Jack had been almost physically ill at the sight of Xander ramming that monstrously large needle into his friend. Finally, he had composed himself, and turned to Carter, saying, “Whatever else we might get from these people, don’t ever let Fraiser near that thing.”
He then walked outside, getting some fresh air, only to be met by another armored figure, this one shorter, but far more heavily armored than Xander.
“Where are they?” the figure demanded, the voice feminine, and agitated.
“Willow, I assume?” Jack asked, to which she just nodded. “Apparently she’s going to be ok, now. They’re in there,” he said, nodding at the door. He had barely finished the sentence when she pushed her way through the doors.
His attention was immediately grabbed by the…thing standing in the parking lot in front of him. He grabbed his radio, calling. “Teal’c, Carter and Daniel. Please come to the infirmary entrance.”
As the team members exited the doors, they just stood there, silently looking at the oddest vehicle they had ever seen.
If anything, it looked like a large Huey, without the tail or rotor blades.
Jack was about to approach the craft when they were interrupted by their radios. The message was just too weird to be believable. They all looked at each other for a few seconds, before hurrying back inside.
They had a capital to save.