The Geek and the Witch
The Geek and the Witch
Earth 329. June 6, 2006. 9:54 PM MDT. USA. Colorado. 10 miles below ground in the Cheyenne Mountain Military Complex.
Lt. Jonathan Levinson sat in his usual chair in the StarGate Command science lab. He wore his usual clothing, a standard white lab coat, a brown tweed suit, a Sherlock Holmes cap, and a Victorian Era style pipe. He smoked his pipe as he stared into the microscope.
Suddenly, he had a revelation.
“Pfaffia Paniculata,” he shouted to no one in particular.
All of his colleagues rushed to his side.
“The cure for Cancer is in the Pfaffia Paniculata plant!” he declared.
“Its family is Amaranthaceae. Its genus is Pfaffia. Its species is paniculata. And its common name is Brazilian ginseng. The root of the plant contains beta-ecdysterone. When this chemical is introduced into the body, it causes cancer cells to shrink and eventually destroy themselves; thus curing the body of its cancerous growths with absolutely *no* side effects.”
Cheers of joy and celebration were heard as all of Jonathan’s colleagues began to applaud. People shouted “Bravo!” and “Genius!!”
Jonathan reveled in the admiration of his peers.
“I wish I could be as smart as him,” was heard from the mechanical voice box of Dr. Steven Hawking.
“Jonathan Levinson, you are the most incredible man in the world,” said long dead 1962 Nobel Prize winner James Dewey Watson.
“He certainly is,” Colonel Samantha Carter said in a sultry voice.
At that moment, everyone in the room vanished. The lab was suddenly empty. The room went from being well lit to a warm, romantic dim, as all of the tables, chairs, instruments and computers instantly disappeared.
Jonathan changed also. His suit and coat were gone, replaced by a blue Speedo. His chair disappeared too. He found himself waist deep in warm water at the Grotto in the Playboy Mansion.
The Colonel began to change as well. As she gently pulled on the collar of her Air Force uniform, the fabric fell away. All that remained was a bright yellow 2-piece bikini bathing suit. She jumped into the water and swam over to him.
When she emerged, she was a vision of feminine beauty.
“Colonel...” Jon started to say. Sam put her finger over his mouth to hush him.
“Samantha,” she corrected.
“Samantha,” Jonathan crooned. “You know this is against regulations.”
“I don’t care,” she replied, her voice full of desire. “I need you Jonathan. I need you right now!”
Sam wrapped her arms around Jonathan and gave him a passionate full mouth kiss. Jonathan returned her kiss as he held her in his arms. He lovingly caressed her smooth skin as it flushed red in response to his touch. He ran his hands through her silky blonde hair. The smell of White Diamonds perfume filled his nostril, driving his passion to even greater lengths.
“Make love to me Jonathan!” Sam whispered in his ear.
“Yes, my love,” he lustfully replied.
As their bodies intertwined, Samantha cried out, “OHHH JONATHAN! You Are The Best!”
“I Know Baby! I Know!”
“Jonathan,” Sam calmly said. Her voice was odd this time. It had lost all of its feminine softness. In fact, it sounded down right masculine.
“Jonathan!” the masculine voice repeated, a little louder than before. He ignored it and continued to make love to Samantha.
“JONATHAN!” The voice shouted. Jonathan suddenly felt something very strange in his arms. Sam’s soft skin turned hairy and hard. He broke the kiss and looked down at his partner only to discover that Sam was gone. In her place was the very male body of his best friend, Dr. Daniel Jackson.
The sound Jonathan made as he realized his horrible mistake was a cross between a womanly shriek and a doglike yelp. He quickly rolled onto his back and crab-walked out of the water into a corner. Once there, he curled up into the fetal position where he continued to make the yelping noise.
“Well, now that I have your attention,” Daniel said.
“Da... Da... Daniel?!” a near panicked Jonathan stammered.
“Yeah, it’s me. Look, I don’t have much time here, so...”
“You’re gone man?! You’re dead! I saw...”
“You didn’t see me die. You saw me ascend to a higher plane. Now listen...”
“No! No! No! This ain’t happening! Bring Samantha back!” Jon demanded in a loud, yet still puny, voice.
“Jonathan!” Daniel commanded, as he stood up in the grotto. He grabbed Jonathan by his upper arms and shook him. “Listen to me! You’re dreaming.”
“Dreaming?!” Jonathan finally understood. It did not give him much comfort.
“Since I just made out with my best friend in a dream,” he silently wondered, “does that mean I’m gay?”
“Yes. You’re dreaming. Now listen. I don’t have much time. You have to use the Stargate to gather some people for me.”
“Gather people?” Jonathan puzzled. “Use the Stargate? What are you talking about!?”
“You have to use the Stargate to travel to different dimensions and put together a band of heroes to save the Multiverse Earths.”
Daniel let out a long sigh.
“I didn’t want to do this,” Daniel said out loud to no one but himself, “but I guess I don’t have a choice.”
Daniel then took a step back and leapt at Jonathan. Jonathan screamed as Daniel’s body became translucent. The ghostly form of Daniel’s body then dove into the middle of his forehead.
Jonathan sprung out of his bunk in a cold sweat. He desperately looked around for any signs of Daniel, Sam, or the grotto. He did not find any. All he saw was his quarters.
“What’s wrong with you?” his bunkmate Eddie asked.
“Nothing,“ he replied in a shaky voice. “Just a weird dream.”
Jonathan looked down at his bedside table. He noticed the picture of Daniel, Jason, and himself at the Inca dig in Mexico. Everyone in the photo was smiling as Jon displayed the fully intact ceremonial pot he had uncovered. It was the first great discovery of Jonathan’s archeological career. He studied the beaming smiles on the faces of his friends as he fondly remembered the day.
Jonathan picked up the framed photo. As he stared at it, he recalled the day he met Daniel and Jason at college. He remembered Daniel’s speech about the joys of archaeology, and how Daniel had convinced him to switch majors. He remembered the day Daniel had asked him to join the SGC. Jonathan was enthralled when Daniel told him about his adventure on another world. Jonathan knew he had to be part of this new frontier, so, at Daniels request, he agreed to join the Air Force. He was assigned to the SGC a year later.
“Eddie?” he asked as he gently put his picture back on the table.
“If you have a dream that you’re making love to a woman, and then the woman turns into a man and flies inside your head. Does that mean you’re gay?”
Eddie stared at his bunkmate for a minute before he answered, “No, but pointing that thing at me does.”
Eddie pointed to Jonathan’s erection. It was evident through his loose-fitting boxers.
An embarrassed Jonathan quickly put on his Airmen’s uniform and boots before he grabbed his access card and stormed out of the room.
“Glad I could help!” Eddie shouted to his back.
Earth 123. June 6, 2006. Noon PCT. USA. California. Sunnydale. The Revello Cemetery.
Tara Maclay came to this place often. Every day after classes and sometimes twice on the weekends, she would come here to visit her friends.
This time she brought flowers. She had not had the money for them yesterday, or the day before, but today was different. Her parents had finally come through with the cash and she was able to buy them.
The people at the local florist shop knew Tara by name. She came in at least three times a week. When she did, she always bought the same thing. Seven white orchids. They were Willow’s favorites.
Tara carried her sadness with her everywhere. It was a part of her now, a natural extension of the woman she had become. Somehow, her loss seemed all the more real when she was here. Whenever she came to this graveyard, her general melancholy turned into a raw, aching sorrow. But still, as hard as it was, the pain only lasted for a few minutes. Afterward, a soothing stillness would come over her. This was the only place where she felt truly at peace. The sadness that constantly threatened to overwhelm her gave way to hope when she was here.
>Tara knelt beside the row of graves. She placed one orchid on top of
>tombstone. As she did, she would talk to her departed friends. Tara
>always visited Willow’s headstone last. She had the longest talks
>her. No one ever answered of course, -especially since there were no
>actual bodies in these graves -- they were just headstones -- but that
>not matter to her. The headstones were all she really needed.
>With her fingertips, she traced the name "Rosenberg" on the marble
>faceplate. The feel of the cold stone against her fingers always
>the same memories.
>She remembered the love of her life.
>She remembered all of the happiness and the joy they had shared.
>She remembered all of the love, the caring, and the nights of passion.
>And she remembered the day it had all ended.
August 23, 2005. 5:32 PM PCT. The home of Manny and Sheila Rosenberg.
“Today’s the day,” Willow Rosenberg said as she stared at her reflection in her parent’s bathroom mirror. She had already made this personal declaration earlier in the week. She said it now just to reinforce her resolve. It has taken her almost a month to work up the nerve. Although she was still on pretty shaky legs about her decision, she knew she had to go through with it. Now that the day was actually here, she found her strength weakening, but her resolve was still there, and it was as strong as ever.
“I am finally going to do it,” Willow said. “Today, I am finally going to tell mom and dad the truth about us.”
Willow had told her parents she needed to discuss something with them earlier in the week, so she and Tara had arranged this dinner at the Rosenberg home. They invited Buffy, Dawn, Xander and Giles too. She wanted the whole gang in the room to give the meeting a kind of party atmosphere. The real reason she invited them was so they could give her and Tara emotional support if they needed it, and to minimize the chance her parents would make a scene.
“It won’t be that bad,” Tara said as she shared the mirror with her lover. “They’ll understand.”
“You think so?” Willow turned from the mirror and looked at Tara directly.
“Sure,” Tara said reassuringly, returning her gaze. “It’ll be OK.”
“What was yours like?”
“The time you told your parents you were gay, what was it like? How did they react?”
Tara did not answer her question. She suddenly found herself looking at a small crack in tile on the floor. Willow read her lover’s emotions with a well-practiced ease.
“You never told them?” Willow asked.
“I will...” Tara tentatively answered as she slowly returned her gaze to Willow. “Someday... It will definitely be before the Earth stops spinning.”
Willow’s questioning stare continued.
“If I time it just right,” Tara said, “the sun will explode right after.”
A quick read of Willow’s facial expression told Tara that her lover’s doubts were returning.
“Your parents are great,” Tara quickly said. She was eager to end this line of questioning and bring the conversation back to Willow. “I mean, they love you so much, and they want you to be happy. Right?”
“Right. And you...” Willow looked into Tara’s beautiful blue eyes. As she held her lover’s face in her hands, her resolve was instantly strengthened. “You make me happy.”
“So they’ll understand.”
“They’ll understand... Right?” Willow felt her resolve weakening again. She looked into Tara’s eyes. Tara gave her one of those warm smiles that she loved so much. Her doubts instantly vanished.
“It’ll be OK!” Willow declared, her resolve now fully in place.
“It will be OK,” Tara echoed. She gave Willow a kiss to seal the deal.
Willow made one last nod to herself before she checked her hair and her dress in the mirror. Tara did the same. Once both women were satisfied with their appearance, and their decision, they returned to the small dinner party already underway in the dining room.
After a few minutes of preparation and a light discussion about the exact seating arrangements, everything was ready.
The table was set, the food was out, and everyone was seated in his or her proper place. Dinner was about to be served when Willow interrupted the proceedings.
“Mom. Dad. I have something very important to tell you.” Willow steadied herself. “Tara and I are... Are... Umm? Well we’re... Uaaa? You see... I’m...”
“You’re what, honey?” Manny Rosenberg asked his daughter.
“She’s leaving,” Sheila Rosenberg declared. “She’s going to switch to a college out of state and we’ll never see her again.”
Sheila was always jumping to the wrong conclusions.
“No!” Willow reassured.
“What’s wrong with S.U.?” Mr. Rosenberg asked. He was not what one would call a great listener either.
“To be away from us, of course.”
“What’s wrong with us?”
“Nothing!” Willow shouted.
“She wants to stay out all night, drink alcohol, and have sex with the local boys,” Mrs. Rosenberg declared. “She can’t do that with us nearby.”
“Wow Will. You weren’t kidding about the whole ‘jumping to the wrong conclusions’ thing,” Xander said. As usual, he tried to defuse a tense situation with humor and, as usual, it failed. No one laughed and the mood did not change. Everyone just stared at him. “You’ll see the humor in that last sentence in a few minutes.”
“I’m not changing schools Dad,” Willow declared. “And I am not drinking or staying out all night.”
“She did not deny the sex part,” Mrs. Rosenberg decreed. “And she did say she wanted to talk to us about her new relationship. Ohh God! Honey, you’re pregnant, aren’t you?”
“What are you talking about? She’s too young to have a baby.”
“It happens all the time. Some handsome Lothario comes along, beds an impressionable young woman, and then leaves town. Leaving her to raise a baby all alone. Well don’t you worry about a thing sweetie, we are here for you.”
“Your mother’s right sweetheart. We’ll help you with whatever you need.”
“Willow did mention the whole ‘not big on the listening’ thing?” Xander asked Tara.
“Once or twice,” Tara timidly answered.
The conversation was loud enough to be heard by everyone. It shocked the Rosenbergs out of their self-inducted delusions long enough for them to start listening again.
“What is it then?” Mrs. Rosenberg asked.
Willow took a deep breath. She steadied herself again and prepared to speak. This time she held Tara’s hand. But before she could utter a word, Willow saw the shadow of a man moving in the backyard through the patio doors.
“Buffy!” she said, alerting her friends to possible danger. Everyone got up and looked toward the patio.
In an instant, the family dinner became a nightmare.
The quiet ambience of the Rosenberg’s home was replaced by the roar of gunfire. Automatic weapons fire entered the house from all directions. The noise was deafening. Bullets destroyed everything in their path. The deadly projectiles shattered windows, ripped through furniture and pierced delicate flesh, leaving death and destruction in their wake.
Everyone ducked as quickly as they could, but it was no use. There were just too many bullets to dodge.
The assault caught Willow and Tara by surprise, but the two women, both long time practitioners of Wiccan magic, were still able to defend themselves. Willow was shot in the arm and Tara took a bullet in her leg before they were both able to get protection shields around themselves.
Everyone else was not so lucky.
Buffy, Xander, Dawn, Giles and both of Willow’s parents were shot multiple times in various parts of their bodies.
The wounds were fatal.
Both Willow and Tara tried to get force fields around their friends, but neither was fast enough nor powerful enough to do it. Their shields were barely strong enough to deflect the bullets coming at them.
And then, just as quickly as it had begun, it was over. The house was quiet again. In the span of less than a minute, four of the world’s greatest heroes were dead, and Willow’s life lay in ruins.
5:45 PM PCT
The neighbors called the police, who arrived a minutes. A sight of pure carnage greeted the officers as they arrived at the Rosenberg’s home. Willow and Tara, the only survivors of this horrific attack, were lying on the dining room floor surrounded by six bullet-ridden, blood-soaked bodies. Both women were exhausted, the magic they had used to protect themselves had drained both their bodies and their minds.
Willow’s lovingly pressed gold and brown floral print dress, and Tara’s favorite purple and lavender dress-suit were soaked in blood. Both women had large splatters of it on their clothes, face and body. Some of the blood was theirs, but most of it had come from the others.
After some analysis, the police observed that over a thousand rounds were fired into the house.
6:01 PM PCT
Tara was being carried to the ambulance by a police officer when something else happened.
Willow began to change.
Willow was crying over her parents’ bodies when she exploded in a rage of magic. Her eyes turned bright red as energy crackled around her. The fabric of reality itself began to warp. Some of the braver police officers and paramedics tried to grab her, but she repelled them with a force field, forcing them back several feet.
Several cops drew their firearms. Most were preparing to shoot, while others had already fired their weapons. The cop who was carrying Tara dropped her and went for his firearm.
“WILLOW!!!” Tara screamed, hoping to warn her lover of the impending danger.
It was not necessary.
At that moment, everything stopped.
People were frozen in their tracks. Falling objects hung in mid air. Bullets from the fired handguns were frozen in the air like flies trapped in amber. Outside, birds hung suspended in the air, their wings stopped mid-flight.
Except for Willow and Tara, all time in the immediate area had come to a halt.
Tara crawled over to Willow. She hugged her as they both cried in sorrow. For a few moments, Willow returned her lover’s comforting affection.
“NO! NO!! NO!!!” Willow cried. “It can’t end like this! I won’t let it end like this!!”
“Willow,” Tara said through heavy sets of tears, “there’s nothing we can do.”
“Yes there is.”
Willow cradled her mother’s head in her lap. The whole house darkened as storm clouds formed just below the ceiling. Tara watched in shock and amazement as Willow, without using the ritual, the sacrifice or the use of any magical items, summoned Osiris, the Keeper of Darkness and Guardian of the Dead, by shear force of will.
“By Osiris,” she commanded. Her tear-filled eyes were glowing bright red as she spoke. “Hear me, Keeper of Darkness! I command you. Bring them back! All of them! Now!”
Just then, a thunderclap was heard and lightning rendered the air. A giant human-looking head materialized in the room. It had a kind of liquid form, like it was made out of water, and it was almost transparent. It flowed and moved like a rippled refection in a lake as it hovered a few feet away from Willow. The giant head did not look happy. In fact, it was downright mad.
“Witch! How dare you invoke Osiris in this matter.”
“Please!” Willow pleaded with the magical entity. “Please bring them back!”
“You can not violate the laws of natural passing.”
“How!? How is this natural!?”
“These are human deaths. Human hands ended these lives. It is the natural order of things. It is done!”
“NO!!! There has to be a way! You must bring them back!!”
“IT! IS! DONE!” Osiris commanded.
“NOOOOOO!!!” Willow’s scream rendered the air. A massive pulse of energy was released from her mouth that struck Osiris. The Keeper of Darkness screamed in pain before retreating back into its own dimension.
An odd calm came over Willow at that moment. For all of the years Tara has known her, she has never seen her lover react this way. Willow’s expression was impossible to read. All of the anger, sorrow, and suffering she had just experienced seemed to be gone. Her eyes, which were now starting to turn black, were vacant of any emotions.
Willow used her magic to levitate the bullet out of Tara’s leg and heal the wounded area before doing the same to herself.
“Come on,” Willow commanded. Her voice was two octaves deeper than normal.
“Willow, what are you...?”
“I know who did this,” Willow decreed.
Willow then walked out of the house with Tara in tow. Once they were far enough away, time within the Rosenberg home returned to normal.
Willow did know who was responsible. In fact, they were the only people in the world who would even think of trying something like this.
The Fearsome Five. Warren Mears, Andrew & Tucker Wells, Jonathan Levinson, and Jack. A band of former geeks turned murderous thugs. They were the self-proclaimed rulers of the Sunnydale Underworld. No one really knew Jack’s last name, so everyone called him Zombie Jack. He had tried to rob a convenience store when he was 16, but the storeowner had emptied a 9mm Colt into his chest killing him instantly. A week later, his father resurrected him with an old Indian spell.
The Fearsome Five ruled Sunnydale with a complete lack of morality. They used their brains, magic, and some demonic brawn to crush the old organized crime ring in town. Within a year, they had the entire city under their control. Crime, drugs, prostitution, gambling, demonic protection rackets, they controlled it all. They ran this city like it was theirs, and they killed anyone who got in their way. They had Mayor Wilkinson in their back pocket. They made a deal with him; he got 20% of their profits if he kept the local police out of their way. Maybe it would be safer to say they *had* a deal with him.
That was before Buffy discovered Wilkinson’s plan to become a pure demon. When the mayor tried to eat the Sunnydale High graduating class at the graduation ceremony, Buffy launched a counterattack that killed him and most of his henchmen.
After Wilkinson’s death, The Five wanted someone in the mayoral seat who would be loyal to them only, so they convinced Jack’s father, an unemployed drunk, to run for Mayor. To insure victory, they fixed the election.
They used an invisibility spell, a mystical cloak of silence, and their own technical expertise to break into the vote collection center. They hacked into the electoral mainframe and altered the records. Anyone who questioned the results either dropped their complaint or unexplainably disappeared. Two weeks after the election, The Fearsome Five had the new Mayor of Sunnydale totally under their control.
Once they controlled the mayor’s office, the police were next. They used a system of bribes and blackmail to keep the local cops in line. Any cop who was not on their payroll was kicked off the force, threatened into silence, or killed.
Buffy, under orders from the Watcher’s Council, did not try to stop them. It was considered to be a ‘human matter,’ so she left them alone, but they did not leave her alone. The Five saw the Slayer as a threat to their power.
They had tried to kill the Scooby Gang a couple of times in the past. Usually, they would conjure up some extremely dangerous demons, or try to lead one of them into a trap. A couple of time they had hired vampire assassins and demonic hitmen to kill Buffy, but they had never done anything like this before. This was extreme, even for them.
Willow was going to do what the legal system could not, or would not, do. She was going to find the Fearsome Five, and she was going to make them pay.
6:41 PM PCT.
After the attack at the house, Willow and Tara went to Giles’ house.
“Willow?” Tara asked, her eyes still puffy from the tears. “Why are we here?”
“I need power,” Willow answered in a flat tone. Any trace of tears was gone from her face.
Willow magically knocked down the front door. After entering the house, she telekinetically brought Giles’ entire magic book collection to her. All of Giles’ books and magical items flew from the shelves and bookcases and landed on his desk. Willow stepped to the desk and placed both of her hands on the open pages. Her hands instantly sank into the books. The words flowed out of all of the books and moved across her skin, traveling up her hands, then up along her arms, across her face and into her eyes. Tara watched with quiet desperation as her lover drained all of the magic and the knowledge out of the books. When Willow removed her hands, all of the pages were empty.
Then Willow began to change again.
Her long red hair turned black. Thin, black, staggered lines formed on her face as her blood turned black and her veins showed through her skin. Her eyes were completely black now. The blood-soaked dress she wore disappeared. In its place was an all-black two-piece suit.
“That’s better,” Willow said.
“Willow?” Tara said in a worried voice.
“We have to find them,” Willow commanded, ignoring her lover’s concern.
“How? They could be anywhere.”
“I know what to do.”
6:51 PM PCT.
Willow did find them. All five of them. She devised a plan to bring them to her. She combined a locater spell with an instant teleportation spell. It worked perfectly. All five members of the Fearsome Five instantly appeared in front of her.
Before they could do or say anything, Willow waved her hand and all five of them were suspended in mid-air with their arms, legs and mouths bound by energy bands.
In a kind of mock trial, Willow listed their crimes as she paced in front of them.
“Jonathan Levinson, Warren Mears, Andrew Wells, Tucker Wells, Jack. You are charged with crime against humanity: Robbery, Extortion, Cruelty and… and the murder of my friends and family. How do you plead?”
Willow removed the energy bands from around their mouths.
“IT WASN’T ME!!” Tucker yelled when Willow walked up to him. “It was...!!”
“Shut up, you idiot!” Warren said, cutting him off. “She’s going to kill us no matter what you say. Might as well die with some dignity.”
Willow stopped in front of Warren. She stared at him intensely.
“We knew you would be coming after us,” Warren said as he returned her gaze. He was answering her question before she had even asked it. “Anybody who’s got any kind of power in the magical realm felt your little power surge at your mom’s house. Once we found out you and Tara had survived, we knew you’d come knocking. We were in the middle of setting up a nice little trap for you at the manor when you pulled a fast one and brought us here.”
Willow got a bored look on her face and continued down the line. Warren was a waste of time. He was not the person she really wanted to talk to.
“I stand with my crew,” Andrew said when she stopped in front of him. He was trying to talk tough, but the fear in his voice was unmistakable.
With a voice of supreme confidence Jack said, “You’ll never get anything out of me. So you might as well just get it over with. I’ve been dead before, I always find my way back.”
Willow stopped in front of Jonathan. He was the unofficial leader of the group.
Jonathan spat on the floor and said, “Plead! Come on Red. Ask the question you really want to ask. You want to know who killed your little Scooby pals at old mommy dearest’s house, don’t ya? Hell bitch, you know it was me. I did it. And you know what, Red? I loved every minute of it.”
Willow stared at him with eyes of pure hate.
“Warren bought the hardware from the Russians, and Jack brought in some extra muscle from our contacts in San Diego. But the planning? That was all me baby. I put two guys on each corner of the house and one by every door, -that way we were sure to get everybody in the house. We knew all about your little ‘coming out’ dinner because we’ve had your place bugged for weeks.”
Willow’s hatred intensified.
“That’s right, bitch. We’ve been watching you. We heard every word you’ve said for the past three months. We hid cameras all over your dorm. They’re in your bathroom, your shower, your closet and your bedroom. Oooohh the bedroom! We got a bunch of them in your bedroom. Three to be exact, and they’re all pointed at the bed. Who needs to pay for porn when you’ve got The WillowCam. Twice a week and two times on Sunday, you and your little friend over there,” Jonathan nodded toward Tara, “put on one hell of a carpet-munching show.
“I wanted to go public and setup a pay webcam service, but they voted me down. Too bad, we could have made a ton of money. Say, what is it with you and Sundays, Red? You have some weird new fetish I don’t know about, or do you just like licking your girlfriend’s labia twice as often on the Lord’s Day?”
Willow said nothing. She just continued to stare at him with hate-filled eyes.
“What Red?! Nothing to say?! Or should I call you Black now?”
Then, Jonathan started to taunt Willow even further.
“What was it like Willow? How did it feel? Watching your friends and family die? Describe their deaths. Was it quick or did it take a while? I hope it took a while. Especially that bitch Buffy. Come on Red, talk to me. Did she scream? Did she cry? Did she beg for her pathetic life? Ohh Man! I am so sorry I didn’t get to hear that bitch scream!”
Willow’s silent stare continued.
“Still got nothing to say, huh? The Little Red Willow Tree, just as quiet as ever. Just like all of the times I sat next to you in Biology. Remember Red? Remember all of lab assignments we did together, all of times we sat at the same table in the cafeteria? You never could bring yourself to talk to me. Na, you had your little Scooby Gang pals. You were too good to talk to someone like me. You probably don’t even remember my name. Well, I’ll bet you’ll remember me now. Won’t you, bitch!”
Willow finally broke her silence.
“You’re not going to live long enough for me to remember you.”
“GO TO HELL!!” Jonathan yelled.
“You first,” was her only reply.
The deaths Willow inflicted on all of them were horrible, but Jonathan’s death was particularly atrocious.
Willow waved her hand. A bracing cold gripped the room as a large pit formed under Jonathan’s feet. The pit became a portal to a particularly vicious Hell dimension. Horrifying screams of agony and wails of immeasurable sorrow were heard coming from the portal. With a flick of her finger, Willow magically threw Jonathan into the pit.
Then, in a kind of witches’ revenge, Willow magically set fire to the other four. She watched emotionless, as Jonathan’s partners in crime died slow and torturous deaths.
The screaming, that was what Tara would never be able to forget. The screams of pain and horror that lasted for hours as the four men slowly burned to death, thrashing about in terror. Some nights, when she sleeps, Tara swears she can still hear them.
After their bodies had completely burned away, Tara ran over to Willow. She threw her arms around the dark witch to hug her. Now that this insane ordeal was over, she desperately needed to find some comfort in her lover’s arms.
Willow did not respond.
Justice had been done, but vengeance was not satisfied. Willow’s dark rage still burned inside her.
“They didn’t do this alone,” Willow said.
“They?” Tara asked. “Who else…?”
“It’s the world.” Willow interrupted. “It’s the whole world’s fault. Buffy… Xander… Dawn… Giles… Mom and Dad, the whole world killed them. That’s why everyone I love is dead, because of the whole damn world.”
“Everyone who loves you is not dead,” Tara said. She grabbed Willow’s face and forced Willow to look at her. “I will always love you, baby.”
Tara gave Willow a passionate, yet tear-filled, kiss. She had hoped it would break Willow out of her hate-induced trance.
Willow still did not return her affections. She was still lost in her pain.
“Evil,” Willow said. Her anger was extreme. “This world is filled with evil. The entire world is to blame for creating these monsters. The world will just continue to make monsters like these. Unless...”
“Unless what?” Tara asked in a worried tone. Her worry was mixed with a great deal of fear.
“Unless someone stops them.”
Tara instinctively knew what Willow meant. ‘Someone’ meant her.
“I need a spell,” Willow stated. Her voice was cold and distant.
“A spell?” Tara questioned.
“A spell that will kill all of the people in the world who have evil in their soul.”
Tara’s fear was on the verge of being a full-blown panic.
“Willow!” Tara pleaded loudly. “Baby, listen to me! Stop this, PLEASE!! You can’t do this!! You can’t kill everyone with bad thoughts. You would be killing everyone in the world. Including yourself!”
Willow paused for a moment, her eyes fixed on Tara. Tara pleaded with her again, silently this time. She was anxiously trying to get Willow to come to her senses.
“So be it!” Willow said. Her voice was calm. Terrifyingly calm. And it was full of resolve.
Tara stood rooted in the spot where she made her final plea. She stared in disbelief as Willow calmly turned away from her. She watched as Willow opened a portal to an unknown location and slowly walked through. Once she was gone, Tara slowly snapped out of her panic-evoked daze.
Willow was going to do this. There was no doubt in Tara’s mind. Not only that, as powerful as Willow currently was, she knew no one would be able to stop her.
That was the moment it hit her.
Tara knew the woman she loved had to be stopped, and she was the only person in the world who could do it.
6:59 PM PCT
Since Willow had drained all of the books at Giles’ house, Tara rushed to a place that sold magical item under the table.
Tara never told Willow about Rack and his hidden magic den. She learned about him from a friend she knew before she and Willow had met. Tara did not like keeping secret, but now, she was glad she had.
She went to Rack because he was the only other person in town powerful enough to take on Willow now. When she visited him to seek his help, he tried to seduce her. Tara was repulsed, but she pretended to go along with it. She was really waiting for him to drop his guard.
The minute he let his guard down, Tara pulled one of Willow's tricks and drained the warlock of his magic. She then drained all of his books and magical items dry.
Tara was now just as powerful as Willow.
7:19 PM PCT.
Tara used her newfound power to find Willow. She reached out with her mind and searched the city for the most powerful magic signature she could find. She found her at Buffy’s house. Tara instantly transported herself there.
Willow was magically destroying all of the pictures of them together when Tara confronted the woman she loved.
“I know you’re hurting baby,” Tara pleaded. “I’m hurting too. I don’t think I can deal with this without you.”
Again, Willow did not respond. Her pain, sorrow and anger at the world still rampaged through her mind. It clouded her mind, altered her judgment and fueled her ever-growing rage.
“Please Willow,” Tara begged. “I need you. End this insanity and come home with me. Please!!”
Willow did not listen. She was determined to end her suffering by ending the world.
Tara tried one last time to reason with her lover.
“I know you can feel it,” Tara said. Her voice was not the soft pleading tone it had been. It was strong now, full of confidence and courage. “I am as powerful as you are.”
Again, Willow stayed silent.
“I can’t let you destroy the world. I will stop you if I have to. Please, baby. Don’t make me do this.”
Tara’s final plea fell on deaf ears. It was no use. Willow was too far-gone.
Tara had no choice. Willow had to be stopped.
On August 23, 2005 at 7:28 PM, in the small town of Sunnydale near the California coast, the biggest magic battle in the history of the world took place.
7:28 PM PCT.
For the opening salvo, the pair hurled massive energy waves at each other. The waves hit with hurricane force, toppling homes and uprooting trees. The waves completely destroyed Buffy’s house and most of her block. Both wiccas had put up force fields to protect themselves from the other’s attack, leaving them unharmed by the massive waves of power and energy.
“Better to lose hundreds,” Tara silently reasoned. “Maybe thousands of people than to lose the whole world.”
Tara magically lifted tons of earth and rock and flung it at her lover. Willow defected the attack easily. She countered by telepathically grabbing a couple of the larger boulders and flinging them back at Tara. Tara destroyed the returning rocks with a quick wave of her hand.
Willow returned fire by turning the ground around Tara into water. Tara levitated out of the water with ease.
While still in the air, Tara fired a concentrated bolt of energy directly at Willow’s chest. A bolt that powerful would have destroyed a tank, but it was useless against Willow. The force field around her held.
After she landed, Tara called upon the Goddess of the Elements to create an ice storm. The warm Sunnydale climate instantly turned into an Artic cold as a storm of ice, wind, hail, and snow froze everything in the area in seconds. When the storm has over, Willow was completely encased in a thick sheet of ice, but her imprisonment did not last long. After only a few seconds, she quickly burst out of the frosty prison. Then with a wave of her hand, Willow dispatched the storm.
Willow raised her arms skyward. Huge storm clouds rolled in, turning the bright, early evening sky to total darkness. Ten lightning bolts erupted from the clouds and struck Tara’s location all at the same time. When the clouds dispersed, Tara was gone.
Seconds before the lightning had struck, Tara had teleported herself to a spot behind Willow. Tara threw an energy ball that hit Willow in the middle of her back. The attack caught Willow by surprise.
Willow, angry at being caught off guard, wanted to punish her lover. She knew Tara had a problem with insects, spiders and bees in particular.
Willow teleported every spider and bee in town to the battlefield. She used mind control to order the insects to attack Tara. The insect swarm charged at she, but none of them got close. A massive flame emanated from Tara’s hands that quickly spread out into a wave of flames. Tara then directed the flames at the insects and set the swarm on fire.
Willow cast a protection spell around two of the insects to save them from being incinerated. Willow knew the swarm would never get to Tara. That was just a distraction. Her real plan was to transform just two of them.
While Tara was casting her incineration spell, Willow cast a transmogrification spell that turned the two insects into giant grotesque versions of their former beings. The wasp increased in size to over 10 feet in length, its small stinger was now the size of a harpoon. The spider grew to over 5 feet tall and 9 feet in diameter with enormous fangs that were twice its normal size.
Tara realized what Willow was trying to do, and she was not going to fall for it.
Tara pushed her fear of these creatures out of her mind. She reached into the wasp’s mind and wrestled control away from Willow. Once she had full control, she ordered the wasp to attack the spider. The battle between the two freakishly oversized insects was short. Both monstrosities attacked and killed each other with their natural weapons in minutes. Afterward, their carcasses became a lime green mist that quickly dissolved into the air.
With her plan to frighten Tara into submission a total failure, Willow continued her assault.
Willow turned patches of the air around her into shard of sharp steel. The shards became flying daggers with incredible sharp tips. Willow telekinetically launched the daggers at Tara. Tara strengthened her force field. When the daggers reached her, they shattered on impact. Some swirled around her, looking for a weak spot in her shield. Tara sent a quick burst of energy out in all directions, destroying the daggers with ease.
Tara concentrated her power, readying for a single attack. She directed a bolt of blue lightning at Willow. It was a direct hit. The energy flew pass Willow’s force shield like it wasn’t even there. The blue lightning slammed the dark witch square in her chest, knocking her off of her feet. The attack was effective, but it did not give Tara the results she was hoping for. Willow was down but only for a second. She quickly stood and returned to the fight.
Willow gestured at the ground. Small streams of energy radiated from her hands and flew deep into the earth. Seconds later, an earthquake that registered as a five on the Richter scale erupted. Willow increased the power. The whole town shook as the quake intensified to level eight. The violent shaking jarred Tara, causing her to lose her balance. She stumbled as huge fissures formed under her feet. Because of the constant trembling, Tara did not feel the ground beneath her opening up. She fell into the large crevice. Once she was in the crevice, Willow quickly ended the quake and violently slammed the fissure shut.
There was silence for a minute. Willow just stood in the spot where she launched the attack. She wondered if the battle was truly over. Was her opponent was dead, crushed by the massive pressure of tons of rock? A second later, her question was answered. A huge pit was formed as a large beam of energy burst from the ground, throwing up tons of rock, sand and rubble. The rubble created a large dark cloud of dirt and debris. After the debris cloud cleared, Willow watched as Tara levitated out of the pit. She floated away from the center of the pit and landed on the opposite side, ready to continue the battle.
Willow opened a large portal behind Tara. She tried to throw Tara in it by hurling another massive force wave at her. It was the biggest force wave of the battle. For 6 minutes straight, Willow generated a force wave the size and strength of an F5 tornado.
The incredible power hammered Tara, but she held her ground.
When the wave finally ceased, all of Revello Drive, the high school, most of downtown, and large sections of the surrounding areas were completely destroyed. The entire east side of Sunnydale now looked like a barren desert, swept away by the violent force of the dark Wicca’s power.
Tara went on the offensive.
She hurled a huge ball of energy at her opponent. Willow’s force field held. She tried to bind Willow’s power with energy bands, but Willow snapped the bands like dried twigs. Tara reached in the Earth with her mind and pulled tons of heavy rock from deep within the ground up to the surface. The rock formed a large stone hand that grabbed Willow, encasing her entire body in stone. Willow summoned the storm clouds again. This time the lightning struck her location, freeing her from the stone.
Tara wondered why her opponent was not fighting back when she noticed a huge shadow moving overhead. When Tara looked up, she saw a large gas tanker attached to a truck and an entire local gas station, pumps and all, hovering above her. Willow had magically lifted the tanker and the station and had moved it here all the way from the other side of town while she was busy with her attacks.
Willow threw a massive fireball at the tanker. The fireball pierced the tank’s steel hull, igniting the gasoline inside.
The explosion was enormous. It had enough force to create a baseball field sized crater in the ground where Tara stood.
Tara survived the blast, but just barely. She was badly hurt. As she lay in the center of the crater, she gasped for air. Her previously injured leg was wounded again, this time by a piece of flying debris that got through her shield. Her clothes were ripped and singed and her face was heavily bruised. Her force field barely worked. It took all of her remaining energy just to keep the heat and flames from the burning gasoline away from her.
It was clear that Willow was on the verge of victory. Both women knew Tara would not survive the next attack.
Willow floated down into the burning crater. She stood over Tara’s prone body as the dark Wicca readied another fireball.
Then, Willow suddenly stopped.
The tears returned as Willow looked Tara in the eyes and pleaded, “Please baby?! Please make it stop! It hurts so much!”
Tara seized the opportunity.
Tara quickly thrust her hands into Willow’s torso and began draining Willow’s magic into herself. Once she felt the energy flowing into her body, she dissolved the flames around her.
Willow did not fight back. Her raven hair, dark clothes, and veiny skin all returned to their normal color. When Tara was done, Willow was completely powerless.
She was also dying.
Willow had given Tara everything she had, including her own life force.
Normal life energy was no longer enough to sustain Willow. Her life force had completely mixed with her dark magic. This made her body so dependent on the magic that her heart and lungs were too weak to work on their own.
“Nooo!!” Tara cried. “I went too far! I’m sorry baby!”
“No... you didn’t,” Willow said between strained breathes. Her lungs were heavy and sore, the very act of breathing hurt. “I... gave you... everything I... had.”
“Here!” Tara said through the tears. She readied a small bit of magic energy and tried to give it to her. Willow’s body rejected it.
“What?” Tara started to ask.
“My body...” Willow said, “can’t take... anymore... magic.”
“I have to do something!! I can’t just let you die!!”
“It’s...” Cough. Cough. “It’s OK.”
“Nooo!! NO!! I can’t lose you too!”
Tara hugged her lover’s neck. The tears flowed again as she rocked back and forth while she cradled Willow’s head in her lap. The pain of losing yet another loved one on this horrible day was almost more than her soul could bear.
Tara was too deep in her own pain to hear Willow plea.
“Tara...?” Willow repeated, “Baby...?”
“Promise me... something.”
“Promise me... you won’t... hurt people... That you won’t... use... ... magic... to... cause pain... like I did...?”
Tara’s tears increased.
“I promise,” Tara said, as she looked deeply into Willow’s brown eyes and gently stroked her face.
That was the last thing Tara ever said to the love of her life. At that moment, the last ebbs of her life force slowly drained away. Willow died in Tara’s arms.
The Next Day
The battle devastated the town of Sunnydale. To the rest of the world, a bunch of people died when an out of season tornado caused a gas main to rupture in a residential area east of downtown. Tara was the only one who knew the truth.
She used her incredible new power to magically rebuild Sunnydale. She altered things slightly so the cemetery would be in the place where Buffy’s home was. The headstones were also something she created magically. Their bodies had been in the morgue when it, along with most of downtown, was destroyed.
June 6, 2006. 3:20 PM PCT.
Ever since that day, Tara has been coming to this place to visit her departed lover and friends. She still tries to make peace with what happened as she searches for answers, for solace, for some reason why all of this sorrow had to happen.
Tara thought about using her newfound power to bring them back to this plane, but she just could not bring herself to do it.
About a week after that fateful day, she used her power to contact all of them in the spirit world. They were all together and happy in a beautiful place. It would have been cruel to rip them out of heaven just so they could be with her.
So, the most powerful Wicca in the history of the world came to this graveyard everyday to mourn the deaths of her friends and to search for some meaning to it all.
END Chapter 2.