Coming of the Scooby Army
Ch 21 - Extinction
The tiny village of Los Rocas Pacificas sat nestled against the base of the Sierra Nevada mountain range only a dozen miles from Walker Lake, from which it took much of its fresh water. The population of 124 were quickly diminishing in number amid heart rending screams of horror, confusion and death. The village had suffered its share of tragedies, mostly due to the occasional earthquake or the desert camper who’d failed to take an adequate amount of water out with them, but this was tragedy on an entirely different scale.
Communications from and to the small settlement were completely cut off and the loud sounds of raucous laughter, burning buildings, and the screams of civilization being brutally pillaged echoed out into the desert night and filled the air above the doomed villagers.
The demon, Razor, and his motorcyclists swarmed the houses of the people, raping those who caught their fancy and mercifully slaughtering the rest. Not that the former were spared - they just took longer to die.
With Wednesday night quickly advancing, Willow sighed with relief and smiled at her ‘best friend’ as she grinned back widely. “Let’s test your reflexes. I’m not happy with the way you keep getting damaged.”
“The Slayer can take a lot of punishment,” she exclaimed much too chipperly. “And I heal very quickly!”
“Uh, yeah. Still, it’s important that you keep yourself in good shape for the several days I’ll be gone with Tara. Xander and Spike won’t be able to make repairs if you get disemboweled again.”
Willow turned to walk away from the Buffybot, standing against the wall of the basement, when the robot suddenly threw her arms around her. With a bruising squeeze the robot thanked her for ‘helping’ her, nearly lifting her off of her feet. The robot then continued to exclaim how they were best friends and how it loved Willow - but not in a ‘Tara way’ because that would be inappropriate and violate the ‘relationship table’ of her database.
“Okay, okay,” Will pushed the robot off. “We need to deal with this haphazard mentioning of your ‘databases’ and any other robot-centric references before we get back to the physical tests,” she sighed at the machine. “Take a seat on the floor and I’ll get the laptop connected again.”
“I should patrol! It’s night time. Vampires come out at night. Where is Guy-les?”
“Arrrgh,” Willow groaned wearily. “Giles! G-I-L-E-S, but with a ‘J’ sound in place of the ‘G’! I thought we fixed that.”
The Buffybot smiled, “It’s funny that his last name is spelled with a G, but makes a J sound. English is a funny language!”
“Not so funny from my side of things,” Willow deadpanned back, “but let’s see where the mispronunciation is originating….”
“How’s our guests,” Xander asked Spike as they did a sweep of the Burnside Medieval Bed & Breakfast, the abandoned castle-like structure that visiting vampires seemed drawn to.
“Lots of infighting. They haven’t found the vampires, yet. The Keith bloke is pissed off, girlfriend is insipidly supportive and medium-chick is worried about the spook she’s used to gettin’ answers from, but who is not in the talking mood.”
Spike had spent the last few nights tailing them around more than patrolling, under Xan’s direction and then complaining of his boredom when he checked in.
“Any signs of the vampires?”
“Hard to tell with me playing baby sitter, but I’m betting they’ve taken off. If they were on the run this long, there’s no reason to think they were interested in squatting on the Hellmouth.”
“Okay…, if they were still in town,” Xan said as he came to a halt and looked around the dark hallway they were currently in, “This is the place I’d figure they’d be.”
“Only if they were stupid. This place sticks out like a neon-sign flashing ‘vampire residence’ into the night.”
“Dracula and Vanessa liked it well enough,” he pointed out.
“Like I said… stupid,” Spike smirked. “We should get you back to the apartment.”
“It’s only… eleven thirty. And we’ve been sort of less than thorough in our patrols lately,” he sighed tiredly.
“You gotta work in the morning, while I’m sleeping. I don’t like the puffy eyes you’re sporting.”
Xander had gotten a subcontracting gig clearing the wreckage of Glory’s old penthouse building, now lying in rubble thanks to Giles. It wasn’t much, certainly not paying anything near what he was making during the new mall project, but anything was better than wasting all day worrying about Dawn and bills and Social Workers and bills and Anya-Oz-Willow (which he wasn’t sure Tara had told her yet) and bills…. Basically it was better moving rubble than obsessing on the bills at Buffy’s house. He was going to be relieved when the Magic Box was back in operation and pulling in some kind of profit.
Of course those thoughts only had him shift his obsession to what was going on in England, so he quickly focused back on his conversation with the blood-sucking demon-guy at his side.
“Not that I don’t appreciate the concern, but I’m fine… mostly. It feels good to do some physical work again, and I just want to take a quick look downtown before I turn in. After you escort me home,” he said amusedly, “since you think I’m a dainty flower, you can then check in with Willy’s new place. Remind him, he can relocate above ground if he wants.”
“I have mentioned that, as I’ve already told you,” Spike pointed out. “He gives a weasely nod and ignores me. And, I don’t think you’re a flower… but I also want you to stay in one piece.”
“I’d like that too,” Xander assured him. “I’m just saying that I’ve walked around a lot at night and I’ve been fine… well… usually.”
“Usually isn’t good enough for me. I will be swinging by the Stein house, too, to check on Dawn… make sure no other gunwomen have dropped by for tea….”
Upstairs on the top floor in the bedroom she shared with Willow, Tara angrily whispered over the phone, “She’s special! We are together and nothing you say is going to make me feel guilty over my girlfriend coming with me!”
“You think I give a shit about whether you’re tapping some dyke,” Donnie harshly… and loudly… said from his end. “I don’t care if you’re with a dude, a chick or some combination! Daddy couldn’t stand witches! You know that. It’s… wrong… for you to be dragging some mojo-tossing bitch down here!”
“I’m a ‘mojo-tossing bitch’, too. You want me to ignore coming down, as well?!”
“You do want you want, you always fuckin’ do,” Donnie exclaimed. Just before slamming the phone down on her ear, he added, “But I don’t want some strange witch at my daddy’s funeral!”
Tara slammed the phone down on the sudden silence from the line and stewed a bit before closing her eyes and meditating. She felt a lanky, furry body brush up against her and smiled as she pulled Ms. Kitty into her lap.
“Brothers, Ms. Fantastico! You’re very lucky you don’t have family issues to deal with.”
At the Stein’s home, in the spare bedroom, Dawn tossed and turned wide awake. With a beleaguered sigh, she got out of bed and went into the bathroom connected to her ‘new room’.
She dug under the clothes in her luggage, still unpacked, and into her feminine hygiene product box until she felt the small bottle of sleep aid that she had turned to more and more frequently to help her sleep.
This is becoming an unhealthy habit, Dawnie, she thought as she popped two of the miracle pills. Buffy and mom would not be happy and you really need to stop using these so often.
She gave herself a wry grin in the mirror before returning to bed.
On the other hand, if it’s sleeping pills or insanity via insomnia… no contest, she sighed.