Disclaimer: As always, I own nothing but the plot line of this. All characters and franchises belong to their respective creators and owners.
A hellmouth was so much more than the mere mortals that scuttled above it could ever know. ‘El boca del infernó’– Literally translated to ‘The mouth of the Inferno’, a name given to a phenomenon found by the Spanish settlers that first stepped upon the shores of a seemingly cursed land. Likewise the natives before them had names of similar descriptive quality. They all boiled it down to a fact, that it was simply and opening to hell, via a gate, a mouth, a maw, a hole, or once or twice, a portal. Silly mortals.
The Sunnydale hellmouth much preferred the name Mother. While Mother did bring with it certain gender connotations, it was as astute a name as any, and true. Oh, Mother’s siblings all had names of their own, that they themselves had picked as they aged and grew. Mother had chosen a name it felt suited it the best, for Mother gave life, Mother nurtured and raised life, and most of all, Mother loved with all its being, the life it had borne. Most importantly, Mother knew it would give its immortal existence for its child. That time was coming ever closer.
Now, that wasn’t to say that Mother was all good, no, that was incorrect. Mother could be good, to those it cared for, but otherwise, it didn’t care. Mortals were only mortals after all, and they were like vermin scuttling across its skin, parasites. Not just the human ones either.
Mother could remember a time, in its existence, when it had been revered as what it was. So very long ago now, eon’s since, when those who likened themselves to god’s bowed down in reverence, sacrificing offerings until they were replete and bloated on the power willingly offered to them in supplication.
Mother had chosen a different name then, something much prettier than Hellmouth. But still, Mother was old, and had little patience with correcting the insipid creatures infesting its skin. Perhaps a sibling would one day correct them of their ignorance, when they grew bored and restless. Too long awake, that was the cause. It mattered little in the scheme of things.
Mother no longer cared to play with the creatures that infested its skin, attempting to open pathways into the various dimensions it connected to. Whether they succeeded or not didn’t matter, the cycle would remain, and soon, open or not, Mother would once again, sleep, and a sibling would waken. It was the nature of things, and would continue to be the nature long after the ‘living’ things were turned to ash once more, and they of the organic-material began their cycle’s once more.
It still remained, that hellmouth was untrue. Yes, Mother could open one or even many paths to many different dimensions, most referred to as hellish by those who cared to name them. It was true that Mother radiated a miasma of what the mortal affliction called Evil. This was some of Mother’s purpose of existence; this had and would continue always to be Mother’s purpose. That still left the fact that hellmouth was still untrue, a mere tertiary side effect of Mother’s purpose of existence.
The worshipers had known, had revered, and had come to understand their purpose, their function. Mother was nexus, one of many, and all of one. Where Mother had its purpose, there was a sibling, awake, aware, on the other side of Gaia whose purpose was its own, unique. The sibling was coming to the end of its cycle as well. They would sleep. Others would waken, as was their cycles. Perhaps it was time to tell the Child of that. The Child's function.
Mother had spent the last few oscillations of Gaia deliberating this, the beloved’s function. Whether or not to keep Beloved as intended, or allow Beloved to exist on its own, independently of its function. Perhaps it would let the Beloved choose, Mother would never love Beloved less, and Mother would be proud which-ever Beloved chose.
There had been others before, but sadly, those had never lived to completion, never lived to know their function, let alone complete it. Beloved was different. Beloved knew more; saw more than the others of Beloved’s ilk. Beloved was kind and strong, filled with love and compassion. Mother felt a warming emotion, when it thought that Beloved would soon be returning to its skin.
Much effort had been expanded, in attempting to aid Beloved. The Other, the Wrong-Child, had consumed too much of Mother’s remaining energy, but Mother had been tasked, and so it had contained the corrupted child of the Sibling until the prophesied release. Unfortunately, that left little energy to aid Beloved. Beloved was smart however, and Beloved survived everything the material world above could throw at Beloved.
Soon, Mother decided. Soon Beloved would return, and then they could commune. Mother would ease Beloved, as it had before, welcoming Beloved to its skin once more. Relaxing, Mother felt eased by the decision to commune with Beloved, and on impulse, allowed a path to form briefly on its skin.
On the surface, a tiny fracture winked into existence, and a small creature fell through. Small, it resembled something akin to a kitten, however, the overly large eyes betrayed the creature. As it sat there, among the detritus and filth of the ally, it sniffed, letting out a small mewl. Above it, the small glowing fracture in the fabric of reality faded, as if it had never existed. The kitten-creature let out another scared mewl, nose twitching, searching for something familiar.
Below, deep beyond the streets, below the tunnels, below the raging cavern filled with fanged death, Mother allowed a small dark tendril of intent to rise, caressing the pretty creature with its essence and wishes. Satisfied as the tiny kitten-creature tentatively made its way towards its new charge.