Chapter Thirty Two.
Disclaimer. The Buffy and Da Vinci Code characters are owned by other people. Other people who are not me.
Authors note. Primitivepixx. Thanks for the infoon Atheme's. Bit of a faux pas there. N'est pas.
WSC Headquarters, London.
“Yes, thank you for that Inspector. ….. No, no. Don’t attempt anything more, I’ll have someone look into it from this end……Of course I will. Merci bien. A Bientot. Au revoir.” Giles cancelled the call. He looked around the table at the other. “It appears that the Chateau may have been compromised by Caleb.
“I knew my spidey sense was giving me the wiggins for a reason.” Grumped Buffy, accusingly.
A laptop was open and Willow was using Google Earth to get a position on the co-ordinates written on the paper. The virtual globe spun and zoomed in to the place no-one had expected. The Louvre. Slap bang in the middle of the Glass Pyramid.
Robert looked on in shock. “This is unbelievable. ………. No, impossible. ……. It can’t be there. All the clues that we followed led us away…..” He trailed off, his face changing to a smirk. He looked at Sophie, his brain coming to terms with Saunier’s sense of irony.
It was Dawn who was the first to break the silence. “This Saunier guy wasn’t a monk by any chance, was he?” She asked.
Sophie gave her a confused look. “No, he was my grandfather. Why do you ask?”
“It’s a classic.” Said Dawn. Sophie’s puzzled look made her continue. “To hide something so well and to keep it hidden, you hide it where you can keep a close eye on it; and under the noses of everyone who’s likely to want to take it from you. It’s not the first time this one’s been tried, trust me.” .
There were awkward looks from Giles and Willow, Buffy was giving her sister a hard stare, willing her not to say anymore. Dan searched his memory to see which one Buffy’s stories fitted the explanation that Dawn had just related. He came up with nothing.
Giles looked at the screen Willow had pulled up, went over to the bookshelf and pulled out a Paris tourism booklet. He flipped through until he found what he was looking for.
“I’d say that this confirms the location and ratifies the information.” He said laying the book on the table. The open page showed publicity shots covering the Louvre. Photo’s of the glass pyramid and the pyramide inverse. The Blade and the Chalice.
“Oh my god!” Exclaimed Robert. “Why didn’t this come to me before. I walked in past that when Fache dragged me down there two nights ago.”
“You weren’t looking for it then, and afterwards we were on the run from Fache, following the trail. It’s not your fault.” Said Sophie.
“But there‘s no Sarcophagus or crypt there.” Said Robert.
“As Dawn has indicated it must be there somewhere, just not obvious to the naked eye.” Said Giles. “The question now is. What do we do to safeguard this knowledge and keep the First and Caleb from their objective.”
“There’s still the two books at Rayne Manor, Ethan was pretty clear that the second diary gave information as to the nature of the grail’s power and how to deal with it.” Said Willow.
Then we need to evaluate that information.” Said Giles. “How long will it take Althenea to get there by car?”
“About three hours, but she left before I did. She’ll call when she gets there so that I don’t arrive first. Ethan’s accepted he’s out of sync, but he’s not stupid.” She replied.
“I think we should still go to France.” Said Buffy. “If Caleb has gone there he’s closer to finding the grail than we, or rather he, might think; and there are probably books at the chateau that might give it away. I‘ll take a team of slayers there and secure the place.”
“What about the other watchers I was going to send?” Asked Giles.
“Another time, or at least when we’ve made sure it’s safe. Is that plane of Teabing’s still at Big Hill Giles?”
“Oh, Biggin Hill. I’ve no idea, I’ll find out. and get us access to it. “ He said.
“It should be.” Said Robert. “It was Leigh’s own plane. Look, Sophie and I want to come too. We can help. We know the way there. And there are an awful lot of books to go through, he converted the ballroom.”
“Ok. Dawn, I’ll still need you there. In case there are any occult books. Teabing had to get his information from somewhere other than Ethan Rayne.” Said Buffy.
“I’ll take two of the trainee watchers with me.” Said Willow. “I’ll need someone who can help clear the books an stuff out of the Manor without Ethan noticing.”
Buffy looked at Dan, and instantly knew what he was thinking. She smiled. “I want you with me. I don’t want anybody shooting at you while I‘m not around.” She glanced at Willow. “Can you cook up a couple of glamour’s for us to wear until we’re out of the country. I figure we‘ll be Ok once we get to France.”
“Sure, no problem. Although, I don‘t have anything that’s a great fashion accessory.” She went to a jewellery box on the bookcase and pulled out two necklaces with small crystals set in a claw. She intoned an incantation and handed them to Buffy and Dan.
“Now the trick is not to think of anyone famous.” She explained. “Xander nearly got mobbed the first time he used one of these.”
“Who did he think of.” Asked Dan.
“Johnny Depp. I think the eye patch made him think of pirates, a-an it went from there.” Said Willow.
“Ouch.” Said Dan. “How did he manage to get away?”
“He hid in a dumpster.”
Dan thought of a face before putting the necklace on. As he did it glowed briefly. The result was immediate. As Dan fastened the clasp his features changed. Buffy grinned as she saw one of his colleagues from the Abbey standing in front of her.
“Can’t you get arrested for impersonating a police officer?” She asked.
Yeah, but don’t worry I’ve been getting away with it for years.” He grinned. It was uncanny, even his voice was different.
“Why this guy?” She asked.
“Andy’s a mate of mine, we trained at Hendon together. He’s always been a bit of a practical joker. Geoff and him were ribbing me a bit yesterday about our date, so I thought a little payback might be in order. Nothing nasty, maybe a photo of him in Paris appearing on the notice board in the office, to keep him guessing.” He said, smiling wistfully.
“Be careful what you get up to. Sometimes these things sorta backfire on you.” Said Willow. ”I speak from experience.”
“Yes Miss, I promise.” He said, solemnly. He looked at Buffy who had put hers on and her features were altering to those of ……….Faith.
Dan’s eyes widened. “Isn‘t that Faith?”
“Good call.” Came the husky response. “You gave me the idea when you mentioned about your pal and his joking. Yo. Red. Remember the last time this happened. Feels kinda different this time around though?”
Willow rolled her eyes and sighed. “I can see we’re gonna have problems letting you two loose on an unsuspecting world.” She said.
“If Caleb’s changed his looks, I should be able to do a makeover too.” Said Buffy, pouting, and making her lips seem even larger.
Willow grinned. “Just call me the Martha Stewart of the witchy world.”
They removed their adornments and their features returned to normal.
“That’s a relief.” Said Dawn, indicating towards Sophie and Robert. “Coz we got two goldfish impressions over here.”
The two immediately collected themselves and looked at each other. Buffy noticed the look and nudged Dan. “Oooh, sparkage.” She muttered, nodding in their direction.
Willow and Giles agreed on the two junior watchers she should take to Rayne Manor and they were duly summoned to the meeting and briefed. Vi and Xander finished their training session and were also informed. Vi suggested that Buffy take Heidi and Helga as backup, as she considered the others in the group too young to cope with what the First may unleash. There were some groans and complaints from Carly and Melanie that Vi had only been sixteen when she faced the First’s armies the last time. Vi’s glare at them was enough to pull them back into line. Buffy explained that Vi would need their support here as a second front, just in case. It placated them; for the time being. Xander and Dan gathered weapons for the group, Dan opting to exchange his seven shot service automatic for a Glock with a larger clip. Xander directed him to the lower draw where he’d pulled the silencer from the previous day.
“In there you’ll find spare clips. Red tags are silver tipped shells, blue are hollow point, plain are, well, plain.” Said Xander.
“Dum Dums are messy.” Said Dan, grimacing.
“Yeah, but they’ll finish a vamp off pretty darn quick. Especially if you’re not close enough to use a stake. A head shot is the best; they dust straight away.”
“Silver bullets?” Queried Dan. “Werewolves?”
Probably not. A lot of demons are seriously allergic to silver and this is the best way to get it into them if you’re not of the slayer persuasion. We usually just tranquilize werewolves and then talk to ‘em when they come round in the morning.”
“Werewolves aren’t bad then.” Noted Dan.
“Right, unless we discover that they actually like the killing and tearing people apart bit. That’s when we do something about it. Said Xander.
“Being bitten isn’t someone fault. How they deal with the aftermath is.” Dan spun around to see Willow standing quietly in the doorway. She smiled. “I dated a werewolf back in High School. He’ll never be cured, but he’s come a long way to being as close to normal as he can. He doesn’t even change at a full moon, unless someone really, y’ know, upsets him.
“He? But I thought you were ..” Started Dan.
“Gay. Yeah, but I didn’t start out that way. It was kinda like a voyage of discovery. It’s a long story.” She said.
Dan nodded his understanding. Willow walked over to Xander and hugged him. “I gotta go. I’m really happy for you an Vi, just don’t get doin’ anything’ y’ know stupid.” She said.
“I promise.” Said Xander.
She turned to Dan. “Do we hug yet?” He shrugged, and held his arms open. She closed in and there was an awkward hug. “Take care of Buffy. Coz if y’ don’t…..”
“You’ll turn me into a frog or something.” Finished Dan.
“Eww, no. I have frog fear. I usually flay my victims.” She said, grinning.
“Don’t worry, I’m pretty much attached to my skin, and I like it that way.” He replied.
“Hey, don’t threaten my boyfriend, I only just got him.” Said Buffy, from the door.
They all laughed. Buffy grabbed the Scythe from its perch and nestled it into its case. The two groups then made their way to the underground car park. As they picked their respective vehicles Dan looked around for the exit.
“I know this is going to sound silly, but, how do we get out of here?” He asked.
“Watch.“ Said Willow. She waved her hand and muttered ‘reveal’ and part oft the wall shimmered away to reveal a transport lift large enough to take two vehicles.
“Where does this come out?” He asked.
“Atterbury Street, but you won’t see an exit from the outside unless you know what to look for. One of the panels in the side of the building is a glamour, and Christine is permanently parked right outside it.” Said Buffy.
“Christine?” He asked.
“She’s kinda like a hologram.” Said Willow. “A virtual image of Xanders ‘57 Chevy Bel-Aire that he had for a while in Sunnydale. The traffic wardens named her Christine after the horror movie. Everyone tends to give her a wide berth. Someone started a rumour that it‘s a car that used to belong to Elvis. I wonder who that could have been?”
“Buffy rolled her eyes at Dan. “Xander, who else.”
“Why am I not surprised.” Said Dan.
The two vehicles exited the lift, passing through the hologram, and merging into the late afternoon traffic. At Westminster they took their separate routes, Willow and the two Watchers heading north for Essex, Dan, turning south over the river, towards Kent.
Once the two groups had departed, and he had contacted people to arrange the use of Leigh's plane, Giles settled him self down at his desk to read some of his emails and reports from around the world. Whilst reading the police statement from Bishop Aringarosa, he noted his meeting with the council at the Vatican observatory warranted some action. He placed a call to his contact in the Vatican, partly to affirm that the Council was doing its part in keeping the world safe, and to ensure that the people mentioned in the statement weren’t able to create a situation like this again. Opus Dei themselves, he was told, would also be dealt with from within the Vatican.
Satisfied that they would do their part he replaced the phone. No sooner had he done so than it rang again. He answered it.
“Rupert. It’s Olivia. Sorry it‘s a bit late in the afternoon, I got caught up with exhibition arrangements. Are you alright to talk.”
“Yes, yes quite alright. How are you?” He said.
“Recovering from the shock of seeing you again, actually. A pleasant shock, though.” She said.
“Well that’s a relief, a-and thank you for not giving the game away with Alison last night.” Said Giles.
“It wasn’t for the lack of trying, I assure you. She’s a very nice person, but her thirst for gossip is insatiable.” She said, laughing.
“Yes, Edward did indicate to me this morning that she’s been asking some very awkward questions about the incidents last night. He said.
“Incidents? Plural. There was another?” She said, worriedly.
“Oh, good lord. Of course, you wouldn’t necessarily associate the second incident, would you. Look, could we meet and discuss this. It would be so much easier than by telephone. U-unless of course you don’t wish to.” He explained.
“Actually, I would like to. I’m free this evening, if that’s Ok. We could have dinner and catch up.” She suggested.
“I have to be in Westbury early tomorrow, but yes, that would be nice.” Said Giles. “Where shall we meet?
“I’m at the Dorchester, we could dine here if you like. My treat.” Offered Olivia.
“Fine. As long as we can talk without being overheard.” He said.
“Oh, they’re very discreet. Shall we say seven then?”
“Seven, it is. He agreed. “I’ll see you then. ‘bye Olivia.”
He hung up and pondered over the rest of his paperwork, checking and signing requisition forms and expenses claims.
There was a knock at the door and Xander came into the office. “I think I’ve had an idea.” He said. “Buffy’s taken Dawn, Heidi and Helga with her, and Dan‘s a pretty competent guy. But; and it’s a big but, what if Caleb’s already found what he’s looking for. The intel is what, six, eight hours old. He might have already found the information and be in Paris waiting for the right moment to do whatever he needs to do.”
“You think she needs more backup?” Asked Giles.
Not necessarily. It’s just, I think if we cover both the locations we could maybe not get caught with our pants down.” Said Xander.
“So you think we’re being too complacent.” Said Giles.
“I didn’t wanna put it quite that way, but yeah.” grinned Xander.
“Alright. Let’s say I accept your view.” Said Giles. “Do you have a plan you would like to see put into action.?”
“Actually, I do. If we leave in the next half hour we can be in Paris by ten p.m., local time. There’s a flight from City Airport to Charles De Gaul at seven. We’d stake out the Louvre either until Caleb shows, Will gets the information we need, or we hear that Buffy’s dealt with the problem.” Said Xander.
“Who’s the ‘we’?” Asked Giles.
Vi, me, and Carly’s team.” Xander replied.
“I thought Vi didn’t want them to go.” Said the senior watcher.
“And neither did Buffy really. But the way I see it, and I’ve talked it through with Vi; if they don’t get the experience of actually coming up against a big bad, they’re never gonna be able to deal with an apocalypse when we next get one. It’s only gonna be a matter of time before Cleveland blows its top and becomes as active as Sunnydale. We can‘t protect them forever.”
“Very well, I agree. Your plan is sanctioned. Have you thought how you will get weapons through airport security?” Asked Giles
“Willow’s magical holdall. It‘ll take what we need. Let Mel carry it and they‘ll think it‘s empty.” Said Xander, with a grin.
“Yes, that invention was better than a bloody diplomatic box. Grinned Giles. He paused, studying Xander for a moment. “You do realise that you didn’t have to ask me before doing this. You do have autonomy, Xander.”
“Yeah, I know. I just figured you should be kept in the loop. Another brain to look at the pitfalls etcetera.” He said.
Xander left and Giles went back to his paper work for a while before leaving himself. He groaned inwardly as Buffy’s analogy of the ‘hot date’ he was about to embark on entered his head, and the teasing that would ensue if and when they found out.
Biggin Hill Airport.
The Mercedes V Class pulled into the car park and Dan shut off the engine. Buffy and Dan put on Willow’s enchanted necklaces and transformed into their respective personas. Robert leaned over and pointed to a hanger adjacent to the end of the main airstrip that housed Leigh’s plane.
“That’s where we need to be.” He said. Leigh’s plane was pulled straight into the hanger by Roger, his pilot.”
“If the Kent police did their job he should be there waiting for us to meet him.” Said Faith‘s voice, huskily.
They got out of the car and headed for the departures desk. There were very few other people around. A plain clothes officer Dan recognised came over to them.
“Excuse me, are you the WSC party?” He looked at Dan‘s disguise, slightly puzzled as though he knew there was something he should know about the person he saw .
“Yep, that’d be us. Piped up Buffy.
His gaze went from Dan to Buffy as he acknowledged her. Then back to Dan. “Don’t I know you?” He asked.
“Andy’s face grinned back at him. “You could say that. We trained at Hendon together. You’re John Ames, aren’t you.”
“Yes ‘course. You’re Andy, Andy Jervis, right. So how come the Met are involved in this Teabing business? I would have thought the French had jurisdiction?” He asked.
“Long story mate. Haven’t got time to go into it now. You got the pilot we requested.” Said the disguised Dan.
Yeah, he’s going through the checks now. Is it France you‘re going to.?” Asked Ames.
“Yes.” Said Buffy, trying not to engage in too much conversation.
He glanced at the guitar case. “So, all this cloak and dagger stuff is so that you can go and serenade the French.” He said.
“Not exactly. The professor’s got to look at some books at the Chateau Villette.” Said Dan. Indicating towards Robert and diverting Ames’ attention.
Ames nodded. “Right then, lets get you to your ‘plane. I’m supposed to get you through quickly and quietly; so no departure desk check in. The other end will have been told the same I suppose. Sounds like you’ve got some pretty influential people here, Andy.” He said, turning and leading the group through the gate.
The disguised Dan shook his head. “You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.” He thought.
They left the terminal building and boarded an electric vehicle, similar to an oversized golf cart. As they approached the hanger there was the sound of twin jet engines being fired up.
“That’s not right.” Said Ames. “He’s not allowed to fire up the engines until he’s out on the pad. A tug is supposed to pull it out.”
The group in the car glanced at each other, Dan’s hand went under his jacket for the Glock. Buffy leapt from the cart, case in hand, releasing the Scythe as she ran. Heidi and Helga doing much the same as they realised that there was trouble. Dawn reached into her bag and withdrew a Japanese short sword, grabbed Sophie and pulled her and the professor together, keeping the cart between them and the hanger.
Ames looked at the face of Andy Jervis suspiciously. “What’s going on Andy?”
“Can’t explain now. You armed?” Ames shook his head. “Right then, just keep out of the way, over there with the professor and Sophie. Dawn will protect you." He said.
“She’s a bloody kid, wha……” His words were cut off as the throttles were opened and the engines screamed.
The three slayers sprinted into the hanger to see the bodies of the pilot and two engineers lying in pools of blood. A bringer was just at the entrance to the plane, pulling the steps up into the aircraft. A dagger thrown by Heidi flew past Buffy’s head and struck the Bringer in the chest, causing it to let go and fall back into the plane. By this time the plane was starting to roll and another Bringer appeared to attempt the task. Heidi and Helga glanced at one another and separately ran towards the hanger doors. If they could close them enough the plane couldn’t be got out. Seeing what the two younger slayers were up to, Dan shoved the gaping Ames from the driving seat of the cart and scrambled there himself. Steering it towards the hanger, he parked it squarely in the middle of the entrance, blocking it. The plane however displayed no signs of slowing as it gathered speed.
Buffy was already on the steps and in the doorway of the plane dodging the stabbing moves of the Bringer. She used the stake end of the scythe to gut him and he fell back inside. She kicked another in the groin so hard that he flew backwards into the plane colliding with two others inside.
Dan quickly considered his options. Spotting the dead crew he decided that as there was no-one to actually fly the plane now, then it didn’t matter if he immobilised it to stop it hitting the doors and possibly causing an explosion. He pulled out the Glock and put two rounds into the front tyre. It exploded, the noise attracting the attention of the two teen slayers whose strength had already managed to close the heavy sliding doors enough to block any exit by the plane. The now flat tyre caused the steering to run at an odd angle. Whoever was in the cockpit backed off the throttle and the engine noise died down, but it didn’t slow the plane much. Dan saw Faiths visage appear in the cockpit window, his mind racing, realising that she must have shut off the throttle but wasn’t able to find the brake, he waved at her to get out and she disappeared from view. Losing sight of her for longer than he thought necessary, he started to move towards the still skewing plane when a Bringer flew out of the open doorway. Dan smiled. Another followed the first and then…… an undisguised Buffy appeared at the steps.
As she leapt off the plane she shouted. “Get clear. It won’t stop.”
The three turned and ran out of the hanger just as a loud grating noise was heard from inside, Buffy caught them up easily, and a smell of aviation fuel filled the air. As they dashed towards the others Buffy again shouted for them all to get clear and they too turned and ran back towards the terminal building. Behind them, somewhere in the hanger a spark ignited the spilling fuel and the building exploded in a ball of fire.
The compression blast knocked them to the ground. As they picked themselves up Dawn gave her sister a glare. “Are you happy now you’ve blown something up!”
Althenea parked the car outside the gates of the Manor and pulled out her cellphone. She glanced over at the sleeping Ethan as she pushed the speed dial for Willow’s number.
“We’re almost there.” Came Willow’s answer before she’d even asked the question. “Five minutes.” She smiled and ended the call, waiting patiently until the other witch’s arrival.
True to her word, Willow arrived on schedule. She took one look at the sleeping teen Ethan and questioned her friend. “Natural occurrence, or did he annoy you that much.”
“Induced, but not too much annoyance. Although, he’s not dealing with the concept of female equality easily. He still refers to us as ‘birds’.” She said.
“It’s not gonna be easy then. D’ ya think he’ll get it by the time the school opens.” Said Willow.
“Possibly. Peer pressure from the other students will most likely have an effect on him more than what we can input.” Althenea replied.
Willow opened the passenger door, waved her hand, and the sleeping mage turned teen levitated from the car. She guided him over to the gates, placed one of his hands on the handle and muttered the release incantation. The gates swung open, and Ethan was replaced in the car. They drove up to the house to find the Mondeo that had previously been used by him still sitting there. The shuttered house had a foreboding look to it as the shadows were getting longer, the day starting to draw to a close.
Again Willow levitated the sleeper to the door and muttered the spell. The doors swung open and they all entered. Willow replaced Ethan in the passenger seat, touched his forehead and muttered ‘wake’. Ethan woke with a start.
Wakey, wakey, Mr. Sleepyhead. Dreaming again?” She asked. “We’re here. You do remember where you are, right.”
“Yeah, That was bloody freaky. I was dreaming that something was trying to bite me. A dog I think.” He said.
“Well, no dogs here, an’ nothin’ tryin’ to bite you.” She said, trying to sound convincing. “Coming in?”
The two young watchers had already located the books and supplies that were needed from the altar room and secured that room from the rest of the house. Ethan had already been told that these people were coming and that they were part of the trustees of the estate, so he didn’t ask any questions about them.
Althenea took Ethan around whilst Willow verified the books and the watchers checked the library. After reading the diary she beamed to herself. “So that’s what it is.” She closed the diary and studied the covers on the two books for a moment. Then she placed it carefully on top of the grail tome. There was a slight rumble in the air, and the ghostly figure of Eleanor Rayne appeared before her.
City Airport, London.
The group watched the departures board as the LED’s flickered and one by one, changed to delayed. There was the ding dong sound of the tannoy and the announcer made her statement.
“City Airport is sorry to announce that there will be a short delay of between twenty and thirty minutes whilst diverted flights are accepted on behalf of Biggin Hill. This is due to technical problems there. Passengers who are due to depart should go to their allocated departure desks on time. We apologise for any inconvenience this has caused. Be assured that we will endeavour to start you on your journey as soon as we are able. Thank you for your patience.”
There was the annoying sound again and the message was repeated in other languages. The buzz of people talking and speculating grew. From where they were sitting Vi looked at Xander, the four younger Slayers either turned around or looked across at them. Their faces all asking the same question.
“We don’t know if it’s got anything to do with Buffy.” Said Xander, quietly.
“With Buffy’s record for causing chaos; you should know better than that.” Said Vi, with a grin. She caught the attention of the other girls. “Okaay. Ladies. Before Xander makes the call, what are the scenarios, and what odds are we giving.”
Biggin Hill Airport
“What the bloody hell was all that about!” Bellowed Ames. His eyes wide with shock at the events that had just occurred in front of him. “And just who are you! Where‘s the other woman.” He asked, looking at the now undisguised Buffy.
Dan, still looking like Andy Jervis, started laughing. It was infectious, Buffy, then Dawn and the others soon joined in. Ames stopped his tirade and just stared. “You’re all bloody nuts. You just blew up a plane for Christ’s sake.” He said, in a strangled voice.
“Actually, the plane kinda blew itself up; but don’t sweat it. It was full of bad guys.” Said Buffy.
Ames’ shocked face stared at his Met counterpart. “How can you laugh about it. You should all be arrested for Criminal Damage; manslaughter; and what about the pilot and crew.”
Dan clapped both hands firmly on Ames’ shoulders “Look Johnny.” He said looking him squarely in the face. “What you don’t understand is that the crew were dead; the hijackers had already killed them. So just be thankful we got the hijackers before they could do anything more serious.”
“That still doesn’t answer my other question.” Said Ames. “What happened to the other woman. The brunette.”
“We’re leaving. Now.” Said Buffy pointedly; avoiding his question. “We still have to get to France.”
Dan nodded and released Ames. Dawn and the others started walking back towards the terminal building. The airport fire crews were racing along the tarmac towards the burning building behind them.
Dan turned to follow Buffy. Ames called after them. “You know I’ll have to report this to Chief Superintendent Clewley, don’t you.”
Dan turned back to face Ames. Walking backwards away from him he answered with a grin. “You know what. You do that mate. It’ll save me the bother.”
As they approached the terminal Dan glanced around to see if anyone was watching. Removing the necklace and returned to his normal self and readied his ID. A security guard was looking in their direction as they passed through the entrance but made no challenge. There wasn’t even a second glance from the crowds as they moved through the terminal and made their way to the parked car. As they climbed aboard Dan’s brow furrowed. It was puzzling him. “That happened last night at the restaurant, and it’s just happened again. How did you do that?”
“Do what.” Asked Buffy.
“Actually I’d like to know too.” Said Dawn. The same thought having crossed her mind
“I don’t have a clue what you’re talking about.” Said Buffy.
“I think they mean, how did we get past that security guard and through the concourse, apparently without being seen. Am I right?” Asked Robert.
“Exactly.” Chorused Dawn and Dan.
Dan elaborated. “Last night, when we came out of the restaurant, we didn’t want any undue attention I know, but it was as though they just didn’t see us leave. The same has just happened here. I wonder if it’s got something to do with what Whistler said about your powers growing. You did this to protect me.“ He patted his chest. “So why not be able to create something like temporary invisibility, or a cloaking shield “ He explained.
Buffy had confused look on her face. “I only thought that if we could get back here without anyone……..”
“………Seeing us.” Finished Dan. “Like Giles said, you’re creating something to assist you when you need it. Just by willing it to occur.”
“Might come in handy at the next finance meeting, so I don’t have to tell them how much I spent on clothes this year.” She mused.
Dawn was grinning. “Hey, Andrew could teach you Klingon……………”
“Or not!…..Andrew will not hear about this. Understand.” Said Buffy, looking at all the members of the group.
“Yes mom.” Said Dawn, sulkily.
“Vill ve be able to do ziss also.” Asked Helga. Becauss it vud be sehr cool.“ The two had been muttering in German at the back of the car and had become curious about the senior slayer’s new powers.
“I really don’t know. I only found out about some of it myself last night and we haven’t researched it yet.” She explained. “When we have time, we’ll check it out. Buffy looked at her watch. “It’s Six thirty.” She said. Any suggestions how we get to France now?”
Dan thought for a moment. “The quickest way from here is by car. If we share the driving we can be there in about three hours.” He said.
“Isn’t there water between here and France?” Asked Buffy. “An’ here’s me thinking I was bad at geography.”
Snickers of laughter came from the rear where Dawn, Heidi and Helga were seated. Buffy shot them a glare, but noticed that Sophie and Robert were also suppressing giggles.
Dan continued, grinning. “They’ve dug this little hole in the ground called the Channel Tunnel. We drive the car onto the train. Twenty minutes later we’re in Calais. Piece o’ pi….cake. Piece of cake.” He said, correcting his almost faux pas.
From the rear came Dawn’s cry. “Yay. Euro Trip!” Then yet more giggles from the three teens.
End of Chapter Thirty Two.