Author's note: A big thank you to Methos for his totally awesome illustration
and very kind words.Chapter 35Colorado Springs“In supernatural circles I'm known as a vampire slayer.” Buffy looked him straight in the eye. “I'm the thing the monsters fear.”
“A what?” Daniel questioned.
“A vampire slayer,” Dawn repeated. “Also traditionally known as the Chosen One and, if you are into really obscure texts, the Hand of Sineya.”
Buffy blinked in confusion. “I thought it was Daughter of Sineya.”
“Nah, that was from a bad first century translation of a Sumerian tablet,” her sister explained. “The error was found about twenty years ago.”
“Oh,” Buffy paused for a moment as she processed that nugget of information. “Does Giles know?”
“He was the one who found it but Quentin never got around to updating the manual. We made the correction in the new edition.”
“There's a new edition? Why wasn't I told?”
Dawn flapped a hand towards her sister. “Pfft, like you would have read it anyways.”
“Paul,” Daniel asked the colonel quietly as the sisters verbally sparred. “Vampires are real and my daughter kills them?”
Buffy returned her attention to her father. “Yes, I kill vampires. And no, I'm not crazy, even got the papers to prove it.”
“Mom and Hank had Buffy committed when she was fifteen,” Dawn elaborated. “They didn't believe her when she said that the gym she burned down was full of vampires.”
“A gym? You burned down a gym?” Daniel asked Buffy in disbelief.
“Share time is so much fun,” she groaned. “Yes, I burned down a gym. Unfortunately, people are good at repressing so all of the witnesses to what actually happened sort of forgot the part about the undead crashing the party. My part with the fire, that they remembered. I got an all-expense paid trip to the local nuthouse when I insisted that there vampires. They let me out once I recanted”
Buffy paused to finish the last of her coffee. “I've learned a lot since then. The reason people don't know is mostly because they don't want to know. Science says the supernatural doesn't exist so people will come up with all sorts of alternative explanations for what they might see. Trust me, people are really good at convincing themselves that monsters don't exist. The most ridiculous cover stories are taken as gospel because people just don't want to know.”
“Back in Sunnydale, it was gangs on PCP and misadventure by barbecue fork,” Dawn added.
“PCP?” Jay questioned. “Where they stuck in the eighties?”
“Vamps are a lot stronger than people. Since PCP supposedly made a person really strong, it wasn't much a leap,” Buffy said. “Of course, it did mean that you had to ignore the fangs, the yellow eyes...”
“Bumpy forehead,” Dawn finished her sister's description. “Of course, you could try to convince yourself that a vamp's game face is just a really good Halloween mask. And the whole poof into dust thing they do after you stake them is actually a freak mini dust storm.”
“You two are serious,” Will said. “You really believe that vampires are real.”
“General O'Neill can vouch for them on the matter of vampires,” Col. Davis interjected. “Ms. Summers took him vampire hunting. He, ahem, staked one himself.”
“He also got a nose full of vamp dust,” Buffy chuckled. “I kinda forgot to tell him not to lean in too close. I thought he was going to sneeze the warehouse down.”
- - -
Mitchell winced as Vala kicked the back of his car seat. He and Teal'c had needed the assistance of Col. Davis' driver to stuff the woman into the back seat where she was currently making her displeasure known. His only consolation was that there hadn't been any witnesses. He winced again as another kicked rattled his spine.
“Teal'c, can't you do something about her,” he complained.
“What do you suggest ColonelMitchell?”
“I don't know. How about sitting on her,” he suggested.
Behind her duct tape gag, Vala squealed in outrage before executing a particularly vicious kick.
“Damn it, Vala. Cut it out. I have a zat and I'm not afraid to use it.”
After a couple of minutes without Vala being a pain in his ass, or more precisely his back, Mitchell used the driver's cell phone to call the SGC.
- - -
Daniel, along with Jay and Will, was having a hard time digesting what he had been told. Truthfully, without Paul's corroboration, Daniel would have thought both Buffy and Dawn were delusional. Vampire, werewolves, and demons. Next thing you know, someone would claim that aliens were real. Except he knew that aliens were real, just as real, in fact, as the “giant heads” that landed his grandfather Nick in the psych ward. His family was cursed. That was the only explanation.
“Vampires, werewolves, demons,” he said slowly.
“And witches, succubi, preying mantis ladies,” Dawn said. “There are all kinds of things out there. The world is a much scarier place than you might think.”
“But not all of them are evil,” Buffy hastened to add. “I mean most of them are but some of them are good guys or at least neutral.”
“Yeah, Clem was real nice. Totally harmless.” Dawn snorted. “Unless you were a kitten.”
“A kitten,” Will asked.
“Two words, kitten poker.” Buffy grimaced. “They're a delicacy.”
- - -
“Actually sir, I have no idea,” Mitchell spoke into the cellphone. “She's in the back seat sir...Dr. Jackson is still inside.... Two civilians and a cadet... I believe he is dating one of the civilians...Yes sir, it is highly irregular... Would it be possible to send someone out to do some repairs sir?...Some drywall needs to be replaced... A table, a lamp, some knick knacks...”
- - -
“He eats kittens,” Daniel repeated in disgust.
“Daniel, you're an archaeologist. You've traveled all over the world. You mean to tell us that you've never been served something not found at your local supermarket,” Dawn asked. “Xander's told me about all sorts of weird stuff that gets served up in out of the way places.”
“Yeah, Daniel,” Jay spoke up. “You know, the stuff that tastes like chicken.”
“Enough,” Daniel said. “I get it. The world is not what it seems. There are monsters out there and my daughter kills them.”
“Technically I slay them, vampire slayer remember?”
“So you took Jack out vampire hunting?”
“He thought I was either nuts or somebody was was using me to play a joke on him. A 'live' demo was the quickest way to prove what I said was true. Once he got the whole vampire and demons are real thing, the rest went a lot easier. I'm guessing that he already knew the NID was not of the good.”
“Part of them certainly wasn't,” Daniel agreed.
“So Dad, now that we have that out of the way, how did you just pop in here unannounced?”