Phoenix Chronicles 4

Rewritten Destinies

Author: Nodakskip <nodakskip[at]>


Rating: PG-13

A/N: This is part 4 in the series. I'm shocked how fast I wrote this. I have to say I took a tiny idea from a fanfic by Karya; just thought I'dgive credit where it's due.





We are on the bridge of a carnival cruise ship that is docked. The first mate is

looking out to the port side of the bridge with his binoculars. He doesn't like

what he sees, and his scowl shows it.



I tell you Captain, it's a damn shame.



You think the rumors are true?



They have to be. There are armed guards

everywhere. She's a real prize, and these Americans

just took it like it was their damn right!



Well, they did help build it.




A stupid loophole. I don't see why they had that

program in the first place.



It gave people a lot of jobs.



But to have the government build cruise ships? Only

two came off the line, and they grab one. I bet the

next time we're here, that they'll have painted it grey

or something. Maybe even toss a few big guns on it.



It's not a battleship. And what the hell they could be

using it for, I have no idea.



It's still a damn shame.



That it is.






We see the new cruise ship base.






There are two levels. The top is a raised running track

with eight lanes. A group of troops in sweats are running in formation,

on the track. The middle of the track is open, and we pan down to see

the other level. It's covered in mats. There are many workout stations

in the large gym. Through glass doors, we can see a few small

basketball courts.


We focus on the left of the lower level. Xander, in sweats, is

hitting a large punching bag. Melissa, wearing an expensive-looking blue

two-piece workout outfit, is holding the bag while Xander is punching it.

Xander is very sweaty. He's been at this for a while. We join their

ongoing conversation. They talk as Xander hits the bag.




She was on board?




Yep. But it was only her.




And you never told anyone, why?




I know her. I trust her. Plus, she never left my cabin.

All she knew was that we were on a ship. She

teleported out after we talked.



(can't believe it)

You trust her? They set you up! And tried to

give me back to my parents!



(sighs again)

I know. It's complicated. To a lot of them, I was this

weak guy who had to be protected and probably still am.

I've saved the world three times now on my own, but it's

still easy for them to think I need help.



You guys have a fight? You haven't heard from

them since, have you?



A small fight, at first. But I have talked to Kristen by

e-mail a few times.



She ask about our location?



Nope. She just goes on and on about her new boyfriend.




She meet someone at UCLA?



(with a very tiny bit of anger)

No. She's going out a bit with Dead Boy Jr.


The miracle child.



(gets it)

Sounds like you don't approve.



(starts hitting harder)

Well, she did ask for my blessing. I think she's

casting me as kind of her big brother. I said I'm

fine with it.

(hits the bag really hard)



(feels it)

You don't like him?



(hits at normal speed)

Don't know him that well. Only know who his proud papa is.



(curious again)

Is this just because the guy's a vampire?




When I first met him, it was only that. Then I got to

know him. He has this entire tortured soul act going.

First Buffy liked him because he had all the looks,

power, and danger. I admit it — I was jealous of him at

first. He got the girl I wanted. But then, I started to

notice things.







(somewhat annoyed)

Everyone loved him. God, it was like a bad Star Trek

plot device. He shows up to give Buffy some cryptic

advice, and leaves. She thought it was sexy. There I

was risking my neck trying to stop the crap he had

us go fight, and he grabbed all the spotlight.




You're saying you did this for the glory?



(short laugh)

Not at first. At the start, it was revenge. But after a while...

I was fighting demons with two good-looking girls. I

was just a kid. I would have loved some attention, any

attention. But it was always...

(gets very sarcastic)

"Hi Xander, what are you doing to...oh my God, it's

Angel! Gotta go, see you later."




Was it really that bad?



(punches harder)

No, but I'd get the brush-off so many times. One time,

Buffy and I were at the mall. I'm having fun hanging out

with my friend, who I haven't seen over the weekend.

Then we notice Angel buying a few of his black

shirts in a store. In two seconds flat Buffy kissed me

on the cheek, then took off after Angel. I complained

to Willow about it, and you know what she said?


Melissa shakes her head.



She says, "God, Xander, you have to stop being so

jealous." I swear every time I said anything bad about

Angel after that, they always thought I was jealous

of him. That all I wanted to do was get in Buffy's pants.

Soon what I had to say didn't matter, when it came to

him. And then he went all evil, and started to kill people.




Kill people? You, you said he didn't do that anymore.



(tries to explain)

His curse has an escape clause. He gets a happy,

and his soul is gone. What's left is the old

soulless vampire; Angelus, the Scourge of Europe. He

went on a killing spree. Even joined up with his old

vamp buddies, to try and kill us. He got into Buffy and

Willow's homes, and drew pictures of them while

they slept. Left them on their beds, to freak them out

in the morning. Didn't draw me, though. Guess I

wasn't worth his time.


He stops hitting the bag, as Melissa hands him a towel.

Xander takes it, and they go sit on a bench along the wall.

He takes a few swigs of his drink.




If he went back to the killing? Uh, why isn't he dust now?




Ah, this is the point where they say I was acting completely

jealous. Buffy couldn't kill Angelus, because he had

Angel's face. After a few months of his games, we find the

curse that will give him back his soul. Buffy was overjoyed.

Giles was kinda on the fence, but woulda done it because that

was what Jenny would have wanted.




Jenny who?




Jenny Calendar. She was kind of an on-again, off-

again member of the gang. Plus, she was Giles' girlfriend.

She recreated the curse. Angelus found out, and killed her.

(his voice gets hard)

Chased her down one night, and snapped her neck.




My God.



(looks grim)

Worse yet, he takes her body over to Giles' house,

and puts her in his bed. Sets up a few flowers, some

wine. Makes Giles think that Jenny was waiting for

him to get lucky. He goes upstairs, finds her corpse.



(goes white, looks like she is going to be sick)

And you trust Kristen to live with this guy?




Oh, he's all better now. Like losing the soul could never happen

again. Yeah, right. At the time, I argued against that we

should re-soul him. We were the only friends he'd had in 90

years; it's like, he would want to come back to find out

that he'd attacked and killed some of us? But Buffy wanted

her old boyfriend back. I was called insensitive. After

nearly ending the world, he got all soul man once more. And after

the summer, everyone loves him again. I learned that I had to be able

to stand being in the same room with him, because the truth is we

needed his help sometimes.


They get up, and head over to a lounge out a set of glass doors. Xander

holds the door open for Melissa. They are the only ones in the room.



(as they sit at a table)

Why would they still think you're jealous of him, if you

started dating that Cordelia woman?




I wondered that myself. It got to a point where I would

pound my head against the wall, because of the

stupidity of it. Yeah, I had a crush on Buffy. Could it

have been love? I don't know. She rejected me. But

when I started to date Cordy...that was love, after

a while. But since I still would try to help Buffy, they all

thought I'd dump Cordy in a second if Slay-gal wanted

me. One night after we were patrolling, I went to Cordy's

house. Her parents were gone, so I was thinking

we could get a little make-out time. I go to her

window, and saw her crying. Really crying. I went to

the door, the maid lets me in and I run up to her room.

She tried to hide that she was crying, but she admitted finally

why she was upset; Cordy thought I would dump her soon, like

the others thought. But I told her that even if Buffy asked me

to marry her, I would send her home. That I loved

my Queen C. Took me a while to get her to almost believe

it. And when we were lying on her bed, she tried to do

more than make out with me.




You guys...



(hold up his hand)

No! We didn't. I knew she thought that I was lying

to her, and that sex was the only way she thought

that she could keep me. But the emotional state she

was in...I'd have been taking advantage of her. I couldn't

do it. I just held her all night. After that, she got really

pissed when people said I still wanted Buffy.


Xander stops, and looks down sadly. Melissa takes his hand.



What is it?




Five months later, Willow and I were getting ready for

Homecoming. It just happened, I still don't get why.

We kissed. I tried to block it out. But, we kept on

kissing. We couldn't stop. Finally, we were kidnapped by a

vampire. He was going to kill us. We figured, what

does it matter? We gave each other a goodbye

kiss...then Cordy and Oz came into rescue us. They

saw us there. Her almost on top of me.


Melissa squeezes his hand.



(looks around to see no one else is

in the room, then starts crying)

Cordy just took off. She didn't get far. The floor caved

in, and she fell onto a piece of metal. It went clean

through her. I waited for six hours, while she was in

surgery. You have no idea what I felt, when I saw those

tubes in her. It was all my fault she was there. But the

worst was yet to come. When she woke up, the hatred she

looked at me with... Cordy told me to stay away from

her. I tried to talk to her, but she had the

hospital rent-a-cops kick me out. Then when she got

out, she really hated me with a vengeance. I thought

of leaving town for good. Still don't know why I didn't.

Took me a while to figure out that I wasn't ready for

a relationship. My shrink even thought I kissed Willow,

because I wanted to subconsciously break up with

Cordy. Said I thought I didn't deserve a girlfriend. No big

surprise; it was beat into me by my dad that I was a worthless

'little shit'. Kind of reflects on you when you least

expect it to. Not trying to excuse what I did, but....


Melissa gets up, and moves to the seat next to his,

and put her arms around him.



But you guys did become friends again, at some

point. Or else she wouldn't have cared to come find you here.




We thought with the Mayor planning to kill us all at

Graduation, that we didn't want to die hating each

other. When we won the battle, we didn't know what

to do next. We'd thought we were both going to die. Cor said

she had to get out of town. She wanted to become a

movie star here. About a week before she left, she came

and visited me.


He stops, and looks at Melissa. He wipes his face and starts to pull away.



I'm sorry. I'm here yakking on about my problems,

that you don't want to hear. I should...


Melissa holds him down




Look at me. I'm your friend, Xander. You've had this

bottled up inside you for way too long now. I've seen

what happens to people who keep it all in. Talk to



Xander looks at her for a few moments.



(takes a deep breath)

She came to see me. She said that she still loved

me...and I broke down. I thought she was trying to make

me feel worse. But Cordy said she forgave me.

(tears up)

I asked her how she could. That I didn't deserve it.

She went into her purse, and pulled out a few small

audio tapes.



What were the tapes of?



Sunnydale is a small town, only 30,000 people or so.

There were only so many shrinks. Turns out a girl that

she knew worked as the receptionist for my guy.

She said she knew I was going to him, and after the

prom where we had a civil conversation Cordelia had her

friend let her into the office, so she could make

copies of my sessions.



(her eyebrows go up at this)

That wasn't a very smart thing to do. It's not even legal, is it?




I didn't know what she was going to say. She just

looked at me, and started to cry. My ex thought I

wanted nothing more to do with her. Then she heard

the tapes. She said she forgave me. You know the

saying that goes, "I can't forgive, but I can forget"?


Melissa nods.



She says that she could forgive and forget. It was

her turn, I guess. Cor held me for most of the night.

The days after that, we spent almost every moment

together. Finally a few days before she left, she said that

she couldn't handle a long distance relationship. But

before she left, she wanted me to do her one favor.



What was it?



She remembered that night, when I turned her down

when she wanted us to have sex. She knew she would

have regretted it then. But she didn't know how long

it would be before she saw me again. So Cordy

wanted me her first.



(gets what he means)

Do you think now that you're in the same city, that

you two could try another go at the relationship?



(shakes his head)

No. A bit after she came here? She met up with

Angel again. From her letters, I knew she was

happy. She had a purpose. A place where she

belonged. I came up here after Thanksgiving that

year, to see how she was doing. She and Angel

were gone somewhere; the only one I saw was

her friend, Doyle. We went out for a drink. He

tried to pump me on info about Cordy; I could tell he

wanted her. Not for the body, but because he was in

love with her. Well, my habit of falling on my sword

for others kicked in. I helped him out; gave him

pointers on Queen C. On the condition he not tell them I

was ever in town. I thought he really loved her, and that

she could be happy with him.



(asks softly)

So did they get together?



(shakes his head sadly)

No. He was killed a few months later.

The same night he admitted his feelings to her, he

died saving her and a bunch of refugees or something.




It must have crushed her.




Sure it did. About four am, I get a call from her. She was

crying so much, I couldn't understand her. When she

told me, I drove to LA. Stayed for three days, even

went with her to the funeral. Since then, we've been e-

mailing a lot; well, there was a time when we stopped for

a bit. I got a new girlfriend, and she was too busy

helping Angel. When we did talk, she started to

defend him big-time whenever I said anything bad

about him. I'm sure some would say I was just jealous

of him again. But...



Go on.



Cordy and Angel vanished for a while. Angel got

tossed into the ocean in a metal tomb.


Melissa is about to ask, but Xander cuts her off.




She was missing for a month and a half, before I

even knew about it! I sent her a dozen e-mails. No

answer. Plus when I called the office, they just grilled

me if I'd seen her and didn't say another word to me.

Wesley was the only one who told me what the hell was

going on. I went again once, to help him look for her. I

come to the hotel, but as soon as I said I'd talked to

Wesley about Cordy, they threw me out. They didn't

trust me. Later, Angel gets rescued by Wes. He

finds this magic lamp or something, and finds

Cordy. She was with the PTBs, the same guys who

gave us these powers. One day I call their office again, and

I was shocked to hear Angel answer. He says that

Cordy came back. I rushed to LA. I get there,

I find out Cordy has amnesia. She doesn't

remember anything. I grew up with her; I figure I

could help.

(very bitter)

But Angel said it would be bad, if I saw her. That

Cordy needed to be with her 'family' now. I couldn't

understand it. He was saying that I would only screw

up her recovery? I got so mad, I just jumped him. He

took me down like I was nothing. That Gunn guy just backed

up Angel. I had no choice but to go; they wouldn't tell me

where she was. I just told Angel to have her call me, when she

got her memory back.



(looks at him)

Did she?



(shakes his head)

Nope. Turns out she recovered most of her

memories about a week later, after some spell. Another week

went by, until she checked her old e-mails. When she saw all

my letters, she called right away.




Did you tell her that they pushed you away?




No. I just figured that saying her best friend in the

world thought I was just an impediment, wouldn't help anyone.

Angel was so into Cordy then, you could see it in his

eyes. And she looked back at him the same way. Maybe he

thought I would try to get back with her, or

something. I don't know, but I never told her.




And he was the one who tried to kidnap me.




Yep. I could become President, and Angel would still

see me as that little kid getting in his way. I'll always

be like 16 to him. When I was here for a week before I

went to England, I risked my life to save them.

I think that changed Angel's mind about me

somehow, when I didn't go for Cordy then. They weren't

with each other, but any idiot could see the truth in their eyes.


Xander takes his towel from around his neck, and wipes his face.



You know, I'm very surprised I told you all of that stuff.




Psychology was my major. I was going to be a shrink.



(grins back)

For what it's worth? I think that you would've been a

great one. Of course, I wouldn't have been able to

afford your hourly rates.




Well, I would have made a exception for a cute and

burly construction worker like you.



(faked shock)

Why, Miss Estrich.


They both release a small laugh.



Okay, you've done your psychology voodoo that

you do so well on me. Now it's your turn.



(slightly confused)

What do you mean?



Tell me about Kate.


Melissa shows a little shock, but she smiles at him.



Where to start? I knew her for a helluva long time.



Start at the beginning. That always works for me.






Rebecca is talking to April. April is dressed in a low-cut black

top with red leather pants, and black boots.




Why do you do that?



(looks confused)

Do what?



Dress like you're bar-hopping? You are not real.

You're a computer-generated program! It's not like

you're going to pick up any guys...

(trails off)

Then again, with some of the techs we have here...




I was born this way.



(very annoyed)

You were not born! Some programmer with a Playboy

channel subscription made you.



You were born your way, and I was born my way. It

doesn't make much difference to me.

(winks at a young male tech that walks by)


Gavin comes into the room. He is like Xander was, dressed in sweats. He

looks like he's run a few miles. April goes right over to him.



(to Gavin)

Let me feel those biceps, honey.


Gavin flexes his arms. April grins as she moves

her hands up, and down his arms.



(put her hand over her face, annoyed)

Will you please stop encouraging her?


Gavin just smiles, as April goes back to the station she was at.



Man. Beth is getting to be a real slave driver.



(no sympathy)

I had to run the same course you did. You better take

a shower before the movie.



(turns around)

What are you guys going to see?



(turns to her)

The new Harry Potter movie.




That one is okay. But I liked the second one better.



How would you know what the third one

is like? It just came out.




I downloaded it off the Internet, the

day after it premiered.






Cordelia is sitting with Fred on the couch. A pile of Blockbuster

Video boxes is on the coffee table. Fred picks one up.



(reading the box)

WrestleMania 7?




Gotta give Dennis something to watch, while I'm at

work. It's better than the B movies he normally watches.



(turns to Cordy)

Okay, now spill the dirt.



What dirt?



You know what dirt! I told you about my first

boyfriend in college. Your turn.




You started this entire gossip session just to hear

me talk about HIM, didn't you?




Kristen keeps talking about him. And I saw the way

you looked when you came back that night.

You were happy. The others noticed too. Did you know?



(gags on her pop that she is drinking)

God, no! Not that it wouldn't be fun to, but he doesn't

even see me that way anymore.



He told you that?







Well then, how do you know?




Fred, a while back if he'd told me he wanted to make a go

of it? Then yeah, I would have. But I have this big

complicated thing now with Angel...


Fred rolls her eyes.



Please don't bring that up again. He's a big boy,




(gets into it)

It's not that easy, Fred! How could I even date another

guy around Angel? He was in brooding mode for

weeks, after we decided not to go any further when the

no-memory thing was done with.



I know it's a big ripoff with that damn curse. But he

said it was also because of what he said to Buffy,

was true with you too. Plus, he has gone out with that

Immortal woman a few times now.



I just don't like her! Staying the same age

forever, and chopping off other people's heads? Who

does that? Okay, I admit that my feelings for Angel have

cooled over the last year. It's just...different now. With

Angel all I could see was lust, and next I watched

his relationship with Buffy die because of that. I

couldn't live like that.



And what do you see when you look at Xander?



(smiles, knows she's going to have to say it)

With Xander, I see the times in high school that I

dreamed of the kids we would have. How I would be

a model slash soccer mom, and he would come

home from his big corporate job, and he would look

so hot in a suit....



(confused again)

Corporate job?




I said I dreamed about it in high school! I was a bit

more into money back then.




He would look good in a suit. So would Charles. But

I know Xander still cares about you. When he was up

here, when you went missing....



(still annoyed)

I know. Angel and I had such a big fight about that.



Yeah, we all heard it. Why do you think Gunn went with

me to a chick flick that night? And on a different topic,

why did Willow say you looked like you'd been in a

broom closet, when you came back?




Xander and I would always sneak away

to the utility closet to make out in high school.



(leans in)

Did you two ever...

(sees Cordy nod)

Oh my. Was he any good?



(smiles big)

What he lacked in skill, he more than made up for in stamina.




Just how much stamina did he need?



Oh, he needed a lot. We...

(suddenly stops)

This does not get back to Kristen!


Fred nods.



He likes strong women; he always had a big thing for

Slayers. I had this little leather outfit; one night I got a stake,

and we played a little 'the Slayer and the Vampire'.


Fred gets a big grin on her face.




I should try that with Charles.


Both laugh.






The room is huge, with a large table in the center and a wall

of windows showing the roofs of smaller buildings around it.


Two men are sitting at the table. It is the man in the

white suit, and an older man in a gray suit. The older man is watching

the windows. A dirty blond-haired woman in a blue jumpsuit is just

finishing washing them. After she finishes, she hits a control,

and the platform rises out of view.


When she is gone, the white suit man looks at the other man, annoyed.



I don't think she was a lip reader.



(ignores that)

We are too close now, I will not take any more chances.

Several times, your Mr. Harris has gotten out of what we

put in front of him. I'm starting to think that you were

quite right about him. Just to be on the safe side, we are

moving up the timetable.




Sir, that is unnecessary. We shouldn't strike till

all our people are in place. Once we activate it, it will

take years for us to be able to use it again. We will have

to act, no matter what.



We just need to establish a foothold. So far, our

sources say that there has been no active military

build-up yet. They don't know. And if what you say about

this Harris is true, then we can not risk the wait.



He and his 'Horsemen' cannot stop us by themselves.



According to his file, he has stopped this world from becoming

ashes several times. I have made arrangements to keep him

busy for the time we need.






On the edge of the building, the cleaning platform is empty.

We move over to a spot behind the large air conditioner. There we

find the blond cleaning lady. But now, we see a blond wig at her feet.

Her face becomes visible. It's the dark-haired mystery woman

we've seen before. She has a headphone in her right

ear. She gets very upset with what she hears.






The large marquee on the building reads 'Harry Potter 3'. We see

the front doors open, and a huge crowd of people come out. After a

tiny amount of time, we come to the end of the crowd. There we see

Xander, Melissa, Gavin, and Rebecca. They walk through the quickly

emptying parking lot. Gavin is talking, while he takes a sip

from his large Coke.



That Emma Watson is going to be one hot chick.



(turns to gape at him)

She's hardly even a teenager yet!



(holds up his hand)

Hey, I just said going to be a hot chick. It's not like I'm

going to fly to England, and ask her out. Help me out

here, boss man.




Yeah, she is gonna be hot. But by that time, we'll

be a bit old. And I don't want to end up the old guy

trying to pick up high school girls at bars.


Gavin nods his head in agreement.



(still upset)

But she is way too young! How can you two

look at her that way?



(shrugs again)

We're guys. Doesn't mean we would think of acting on it.



(tries to put his arm around Rebecca)

Besides, there are plenty of hot girls here already.



(annoyed but laughs, then pushes his arm away)

You wish, pal.



(suddenly serious)

You would be surprised what I wish for.


They are halfway to the Humvee, when Xander stops.

The others stop, when he does.



(very annoyed)

Don't tell me.



(looking to the end of the lot)

Afraid so.



What is this now? Three of 'em?



Do we count the one who followed us last week?



Yep. It makes three.




I'm sorry, you guys.



It's not your fault. You did nothing wrong. It's just

your parents...are very persistent.



Yeah. It's just taking a bit longer then we thought to

get rid of that court order this judge friend of your

parents threw at us.


Rebecca stretches her arms, and throws a quick look around.



I count three. One by the jeep, one coming at us from

the left, and the one guy that seems to be walking to

the soon-to-be-closed theater.


Xander pulls out the keys, and tosses them to Gavin.



(to Gavin)

When I say so, head for the Humvee. Go around the

block, and meet us a few blocks up.


Everyone nods his or her heads.





At the same time that Gavin heads by himself to the

Humvee, the others start walking to the sidewalk. We follow Gavin.

He stands next to the Humvee. He steals a quick glance to

see where the others are.



Freeze. Don't move.


Gavin turns slowly, to see one of the men

next to him with his gun pointed at him.




Chill, dude.


The man with the gun just moves closer to Gavin.



Shut up.


We move down to see Gavin move his left thumb, as

he pops the cover of his Coke loose. He then drops the keys to

the ground. The man glances down for a spilt second, at the sound

of them hitting the ground. That's all Gavin needs. He splashes the guy

with his half-filled Coke in his face. As he reacts to it, Gavin slams his

left arm in to the man's arm holding the gun, knocking it out of his hand.

Then he grabs hold of the top rail of the Humvee railing, and pulls

himself up enough to kick the man in the chest with both feet.


The man staggers, Gavin does a roundhouse kick to his head

to knock him out. As the man falls Gavin grabs the fallen gun,

and his keys. He climbs in, and looks around, as he pulls

out of the parking space.




That was a four-dollar Coke!






A few blocks up Xander, Melissa, and Rebecca walk

fast down the sidewalk. Xander has a quick look back. The two other

men are running at them. He also sees the Humvee turn the corner at the

end of the street, coming towards them from the other direction.

Xander makes a choice.



(to the girls)

Run for Gavin. I'll hold these guys off.


Melissa tries to grab Xander's arm, but Rebecca pulls her

along as Xander runs back. They get to the Humvee, and look back to

see the two men fighting with Xander. They are too far away

to hear anything.


Suddenly, a black minivan with no plates stops on the street

next to the three fighters. The side door opens, and Angel jumps out.



(can't believe it)

You have got to be kidding me. Move it, Gavin!


Angel sucker-punches Xander, knocking him out. He then throws

Xander into the van, while the two men start shooting at the

fast-approaching Humvee. Several bullets bounce off the Humvee,

and the windshield almost shatters in front of Melissa. Bulletproof glass

saves her life. Gavin does a hard turn, and stops.



(pushing Melissa down)

Get down!


Bullets continue to hit the side of the Humvee. Rebecca reaches

under the seat, and pulls out a handgun.




No, we don't need the roof on tonight!


She looks over the side to take a shot...



(very angry)

Damn it!!!


The van is gone, leaving a bunch of scared people getting up

from the ground. Police sirens are in the distance.






We are looking at the curb, when suddenly a Humvee

screeches to a stop. We pull up to see It's Melissa, Rebecca, Gavin,

and Beth. Three trucks full of troops in full gear pull up. The troops

start to pile out. Everyone gets out of the Humvee, and Melissa is furious.



(to troops)

Fall out like we planned. No one moves till we say!


A lot of troops move out to the other side of the

hotel. Some stay with the four.



(trying to talk to Melissa)

It coulda been that guy who faked the Skip

demon to them before, ya know.


Melissa just looks at him.




I'm making sure.

(turns to the troop leader)

Remember, no harm to the blond girl.


The leader nods his head.






Everyone is in the lobby area. Fred and Gunn are on

a far couch, Kristen and Conner are on the other. Wes, Lorne,

Angel and Cordelia are on either sides of the counter.


The troops pile in from both entrances. They have their weapons drawn.



No one move!


Angel and Cordy go for the weapons cabinet. Three soldiers cut them off.



(to Angel)

No need for anyone to get hurt here.



(still ticked off)

If Xander's not a prisoner.


Angel, and the others turn to see them enter.



(sees it's Melissa)

What is this? Payback?


Melissa stares at him coldly. Then she turns to the troop leader.



Tear this place apart, if you have to. Check the

parking area as well, for the van. I want to know the truth!



Yes ma'am!


He points to various soldiers, and they head off into

every doorway. We see them start going into the rooms on the

upper level. Beth goes with a team.


Cordelia steps forward.



What are you doing? And where the hell is Xander?


Melissa just looks at her.




That's what we're trying to find out.

(she turns to Angel)

Where were you tonight?




Why should I tell you?




Because less than an hour ago, I watched you or

someone with your face sucker-punch and kidnap my friend!


Off of Angel and Cordy's shocked looks, Kristen comes up.




Xander's been kidnapped!?


Melissa doesn't look at her, she keeps looking at Angel.



(trying to keep things frosty)

Look, we're willing to believe that it might be whoever

impersonated that Skip guy, but we are not taking

any chances here. If the boss isn't around, then you got

nothing to worry about. But if he is...



(very cold)

If he is here, then you have a whole world of trouble.

(looks at Cordy)

"I know her, I trust her." That's what Xander told me

about you, when you paid your little visit to our home. You

better pray his trust wasn't misplaced.


Angel and Cordy back off, as Melissa's hands start to glow blue.




We don't have him. It must be the people who faked

Skip. We can work together to find him...




Do you think I would trust YOU, even if you didn't have

him? You went behind your so-called friend's back,

and tried to kidnap me! Hell, right now the only

person out of all of you I would trust is her!


Melissa points to Kristen. Kristen moves next to her.




We wouldn't harm Xander. You have to believe me!

I'm sorry about the trying to give you back to your

parents thing, 'cause I do know what it's like to be on the run...



(snaps at her)

You do, do you? You had these old guys trying to

make you into a Terminator or something. I had my own

FAMILY calling me nuts, because I was hurting their

public image! Do you know what it's like to have so many

drugs put in your body, that you can't even think straight?

Knowing that your family would bribe a judge to keep you

locked up in an asylum!?


Off of everyone's shocked faces, Gavin comes up to Melissa.

He takes hold of her wrists. Rebecca also comes up, and

they both look Melissa in the eye. Melissa's rage eases up some.

Her hands stop glowing.




Remember what Xander said. They're trying to

drive a wedge between us and them. As sad

as it seems, these...

(looks at Cordy, Angel, and Wesley)

...demon hunters are gonna be our backup, when

whatever it is goes down.


The Angel Investigations team looks on, surprised. Gavin's cell

phone rings, and as he listens to the person on the other end

his face shows shock.






This is a relatively new warehouse, unlike the ones in

Sunnydale. It is very clean. There is a living room set up

with a couch, and a big screen TV that is near a single bed.

There is also a exercise area set up. We pull over to the far

side, and we see the black minivan in the loading area. It

looks much worse than before. The rear window is shot out,

and several bullet holes are on the back door.


We move over a bit onto a ledge, and we see a card table with two

chairs. Xander is tied to one of them. He is slowly waking up.




Angel...what the...


Another person walks into view. It's the mystery woman. She sits

down across from him. Her emotionless face is back in place.



Time to wake up, Xander.



(head jerks up. He looks at her coldly)

So you're the one trying kidnap and kill me. Please,

tell me why I'm so damn important!


The woman just nods her head towards the parked van.

Xander looks, and is shocked to see the state it's in.



I rescued you from them, actually. And I already left an

untraceable message with April, that you'll be back soon.



(still not trusting her)

Why the hell should I believe you? And why wouldn't

they just kill me, as soon as they had me tonight?




They can't just kill you. The Powers would instantly know

if you were gonna die. They would send a vision to Cordy,

then Angel would somehow figure it all out. Not that

he could do anything about it.


Xander tries to hide a surprised look at her calling Cordelia 'Cordy'.



Look, I know you have no reason to trust me. But

what I have to tell you can't wait. They've moved up

the schedule. We now have three days.




Three days till what?




Till the Assembly attacks.



(still in the dark)

Who the hell is the Assembly? I've never heard of them.




I know you've never seen them in Giles' books, the

Council files, even Angel's small library. And for the

record, my name is Alexis Heyer.




Heyer? You're related to Kristen?


She nods her head slowly.




In a way you might not believe, right now.




Try me.




She's my mother.


Xander looks at her in disbelief.



And the person you know as Conner is my father.



(can't believe it)

I think I would have known if Kristen had a kid! What,

you grew up in a hell dimension as well?




I knew you wouldn't believe me. You said that you

wouldn't. Oh, and just so you know? You can stop

trying to use your powers to get out of the ropes.

(holds up an amulet)

When this thing is near, your powers don't work.

And you haven't learned how to funnel them into

yourself yet, so you won't get loose.


Xander glances down to where his hands are tied

to the arms of the chair. He is trying, but nothing is

happening. He looks at her.




So you want me to believe you're Kristen and Conner's

kid. And a group of demons are going to attack. Is

that all?



(stares at him)

The Assembly is more that a group of demons.

It's not like the demon biker gang that attacked

Sunnydale, when you guys brought Buffy back to life

and ripped her away from Heaven.


Xander's face goes white.




I... I don't know what you're talking

about. Buffy never died...




Liar. Sure she did. Twice. She drowned after the Master bit

her the night of the Prom, in '97. You dragged Angel along

to find her. Gave her CPR, brought her back. Then you, her,

and Angel went the library to fight the vampires. Cordy,

Jenny Calendar, Willow, and Giles were already

there. Heck, Cordy drove her car into the school, to

get away from them.


Xander can't believe what he is hearing.



Then fast forward past Spike and Drusilla , Angelus,

Ted, the Mayor, ADAM, and you get Glory.

Remember her? She was the one the monks hid the

Key from. The Key, as in Dawn. Thought she'd been there

for everything, but turns out that she wasn't even a

year old at the time. Doc started the bloodletting on the tower,

while you guys fought Glory, and her alter ego Ben with who

she was sharing a body. Buffy killed Doc, then since

Dawn was made out of her, Buffy jumped and her

blood caused the portal to close. Then to fool

everyone you used the re-programmed Buffy-bot, the one that

poor old Spike had made, to make everyone think

that Buffy was alive. So the demons didn't try to

ransack Sunnydale. And to keep Hank Summers from

coming and taking Dawn away. You would have gone to

Angel for help, but he, Cordy, Wes, Gunn, and Lorne

were in Pylea meeting Fred. And Cordy was made

a princess because of her visions. And in your wallet,

you still have a copy of a full body photo that Cordy

sent you of her modeling the princess outfit. You even

got it laminated.


Xander is almost speechless.



(trying to say anything)




Told you, I'm from the future. You guys told me all

this stuff, as bed time stories. Dad wanted his kid to

know how to fight, so I've known about this stuff

since I was a little kid.



(not wanting to, but starting to believe her)

If you're from the future, and you know all this? Then

tell me something about myself, that you can't know

any other way.



(thinks for a second)

How about what you wanted to tell Cordy before

Graduation? About how you thought you were going

to die, and you made a video saying goodbye to her.

But after you both lived, you never let her see it.

And you still have it. Labeled it Super Bowl IV, if I

remember right.



(utterly shocked)

No...oh my God.



(relaxes a little)

I know a lot about you. A girl's got to know her own

godfather. Where do you think I got my name from?


Xander is as speechless as we have ever seen him.

Alexis gets up. She pulls out a knife.



I'm going to cut you loose now. Do I have your word

that you won't do anything dumb, until you hear me out?


Xander nods. She moves over and cuts his hands free.

She then sits back down. Xander rubs his wrists

where the ropes were.



(considers what to say)

Okay, so how do we stop this Assembly? They're like the

Scourge, then?



(shakes her head)

No, they're much worse. Are you familiar with the

theory of alternate dimensions?




Sort of. It's been a while since I gave that stuff much thought.



(looks solemn)

Well, you remember the Next Generation episode

where Worf shifts between different versions of the





Yeah. At the end, there was an Enterprise from a dimension

where the Borg assimilated Earth, after Wolf 359.

You mean, it's something like that?



(nods as well)

You got it. The Assembly is kind of like the Borg.

Instead of attacking other planets, they attack alternate

earths. We're the third earth they're going after.

They strip-mine everything, take any survivors as

slave labor, and leave the planet a smoking pile of

rubble. In their dimension, they're a bit ahead of us

— it's like 2078 there. And they have some superior

tech compared to us. But the big thing is that there's

no Slayer there. Demons and humans didn't just

coexist like here, they evolved into races of

hybrids. Hardly anyone is pure human there anymore.

They're coming in three days, and they can not be

reasoned with. A few people with superpowers are

not going to cut it. We need to mobilize the entire U.S.

military on this.




There is no way the brass will believe that an invasion

from another dimension is coming.




Yes, they will. They've dealt with this sort of stuff before.

Tell them it's a 'Foothold' alert. And you know

General Martinson?




Andrews' boss? A little.



After we're done, call him and ask how the snake-

heads are doing. Or the how the Russian team is

working out.



(not understanding)

What...? I don't understand.




Just tell him that. He'll understand, and believe

you. Oh, and make sure you tell him to order the

Prometheus to be ready to launch. That's vital. It was

destroyed in its bay, the first time around.

(off Xander's very confused face)

Earth is not alone here. We have some enemies

we're at war with, and they don't live in caves. We'll

be fighting three wars at once, and it will not be good.



(gives up trying to get it)

Okay...ah, how bad was the attack the first time?




I wasn't around for the first attack. I won't be

born for a few years yet.

(looks down for a second. Then softly)

If I get born at all, this time around.

(back to business)

But I saw the tapes. They opened a huge portal a

couple of miles wide, and three miles tall. The shock

troops came out by the thousands. They took over

the immediate area, with the help of several of their

jet fighters. Then the big boy came out.



Big Boy?



The way you always talked about it was to say it was

like the Cobra flying aircraft carrier, from GI Joe. It's

about half the size of the first Enterprise. If we can

destroy that ship...then we have a chance. The

Prometheus is the only thing around that can match it.




How can they open a portal that size? It would need

a huge amount of power.




There is a device they have. It acts like a magnifier.

It's round, and about two feet tall. It's clear, with a

large black square in the center. If you can stop that...



...then they can't bring anything else in. Right. But what did

this thing magnify to get a portal that size....

(stops. He realizes he already knows)





Yep, they used the Hellmouth.



(mouth tightens)

How far did these guys get?




You and your team led the fight for nine years. But they

used surprise, and that ship of theirs to keep everyone away

till they set up the towers.








A network of five-storey-high towers that created a

energy shield around the area they took over. At the

peak of their conquest, they had most of the edge of

southern California, a lot of Nevada, and Arizona,

and a bunch of Mexico.



(back into shock)

Wouldn't the UN help out? Being attacked by a...



(holds up her hand)

They tried. Sure the good guys won a few battles,

but your group was the only one who was ever able

to do any real harm to them.




How could we have hurt them? There's only four of us.




There'll be more. But I don't know the details of all

of the battles, I got all this after the fact. I just knew that

Uncle Xander was never around much, because he

was always fighting the bad men. I was told your base

became the command post for the war. Of course,

that won't happen now since they dropped it on

you. We only got a few phone calls from you

over the years.

(tears up a little, but tries not to show it)

I remember on my sixth birthday, I got a big bouquet

of red roses from you. For a while, we thought you

were dead. We hadn't heard from you in a LONG time.

Then I get roses with the card 'Sorry I couldn't call

pip-squeak, I've been busy making the bad men

leave'. Aunt Cordy just started crying. Every time you

called, you and her would talk for hours. When I was

little, I wanted to go fight the 'bad men' so you and

Aunt Cordy could be happy.



(can hardly speak)

And were we ever happy?



(smiles, remembers)

I was the flower girl at your wedding.


Xander looks down, trying to hold back tears.

Alexis reaches out, and takes his hands in hers.



I know what you're thinking.


Xander looks at her.



You're wondering how you'll screw it up this time.

(off his downcast face)

You think that since you cheated on Cordy the first time,

and left Anya...that you will always screw it up somehow.

So you closed that part of you off. I know you

don't want to hurt her again. And you won't. She

moved in with you, when you guys got a new base

after you finally won the war.

(she smirks)

Cordy loved living with you on that ship. That is, until...



(head whips up)

Until what?


Alexis looks down. Trying to find the strength. Then...



Can we move over to the couch?


Xander nods, and goes to sit with her. She remains silent.




What is it?



(tears up again)

You beat them. It was over. We all lived happily ever

after. For a while. You got sent to a mission in China.

I had just turned 17, and I was so proud that you let me

go with you. My first mission. I wanted to make

you and my parents proud of me.

(her voice breaks)

We were gone for a week. When we came back...






All through this part we just hear music (like the music

when Wishverse Buffy killed VampXander/Willow in "The Wish").

This in the future, so the people are all older-looking;

save for Angel and Spike.






We slowly pan over the lobby. It is no longer the neat,

clean lobby we are used to seeing. Almost every inch of it has

damage. Blast marks are everywhere. As we pull to the

center we can see Angel, Cordy, Gunn, Wesley, and Conner

fighting with men covered head to toe in black body armor.

They look like they are from a bad sci-fi movie. All the Angel

Investigations people has is swords, and battleaxes. They are not faring

so well. In the background, we can see several more troops moving in

through the front door. We can also see Kristen laying face down on the floor.

She is not moving, and there is a pool of blood flowing from under her.






Fred Burkle-Gunn is rushing two 13-year-old, twin dark-haired

girls out the door. The girls are crying, and trying to hold onto her.

Fred is pushing them out, she is yelling at them to run. Then

suddenly, Fred seizes up. Her eyes close, as she falls to the feet of

the girls. The two girls scream at the sight of a huge burning

hole in her back, that is still smoking.






Gunn screams in rage, and runs at a trooper with his weapon

pointed at where Fred was. Gunn doesn't get close as the trooper

turns, and shoots him almost point blank in the chest. Blood splatters

from his wound, as Gunn's body falls backwards to the ground. As he

hits the ground, we see Wesley's body next to him.


Angel runs at the trooper, and runs him though with his sword.

The trooper falls dead. Angel quickly pulls out the sword.

As he turns to the next trooper, he gets hit with a flame-thrower

blast. In the back we can see Cordelia silently screaming as Angel,

still on fire, snaps the neck of a trooper. He keeps battling, but soon

the flames are too much, and he falls to his knees, turning to ash.

Conner dives, and knocks Cordelia out of the way of a incoming blast.

The blast hits Conner in the shoulder, and the force causes him to spin

around as he falls. As he lays on the floor, he looks at Kristen's body, and

tries to crawl to it, but his body gives out before he makes it. Cordelia turns

with tears in her eyes, and yells at the two girls still hiding by the door.

One tries to run to Cordelia, but the other grabs her arm,

and pulls her sister forward as they run away.


Cordelia turns to face the troops. Her face is covered in sweat

and tears. She knows she is going to die. But she stands tall, and

her body starts to glow as she charges the troopers. She doesn't make it past

a few steps, as all the troopers open fire on her. Several hit her in

different places. In slow motion she drops the sword, and falls to

the ground. All we see are her lifeless eyes as we....






Many people are in the store. We see Buffy, Willow, Giles, and Spike

at the counter. Dawn, and her friends Kit and Carlos are at a table. Amanda

and Lee, along with a woman we don't recognize is at another end

of the store. Everything seems normal. We pan over to a door that

simply reads 'BASEMENT'.






It is littered with items. We pass over most, till we reach a self on the

far end. One section is covered, by a pile of rags.






We see red LCD numbers on a timer.












The two-storey building explodes in a huge fireball.






We can just see land as we pan to the right. The cruise ship base

of the Four Horsemen and Demon Command, is lying in

the water on its port side. We can see a huge hole in the bow

of the ship. It has only minutes before it goes under.






Everything is on its side. The room is 80 % full of water.

There are bodies floating. We see a blue light, and we turn to see it.

We see Rebecca treading water as her hands glow blue, as she

repeatedly strikes the hull trying to get out. She is making little

headway, but she still tries.






The two girls are looking worse than we saw them last.

Their clothes are ripped, dirty, and their long black hair is sticking

to their sweat-covered bodies. They are pressing the doorbell

several times, while looking around in every direction. The

door opens, and the girls run to hug the man who opened

the door. We pan up to see a very confused, older Oz. He holds the

girls tight, as he takes them inside. As he closes the door, we...






Who did it?




Someone you thought you'd killed. He was a high-level

Assembly officer, who wanted revenge. He waited till

we had all let our guard down, and started to pick us

off. I don't know his name. You did, but you never told

me. We ended up tracking him to his base, right

before he was going back. Dumb luck, I guess.



(starts to get it)

Back as in...




Yeah. He was going back in time. I don't know how.

He said since he was going back, that he didn't have

to do anything to Mom, Dad, Aunt Cordy, or the others.

(looks ready to kill)

So he just did it, for the fun of it. He even laughed about it.

(looks to Xander)

I'd never seen you so enraged before. You guys

fought like nothing I'd ever seen. You got distracted

for a split second, but that's all he needed. He hurt

you bad. He just laughed as he tossed me across the

room, when I tried to fight him. Then he just ran

into a bright light, and vanished.

(her voice gets almost childlike)

You were dying. I wanted to get you to a hospital,

but you wouldn't let me. You ordered me through the

time travel thing after him. You said that I had to stop him.

Then died in my arms.

(bursts into complete sobs)

You were maybe the last real family I had...and you

died in my arms! You died!


As she cries, Xander wraps his arms around her and

pulls her to him. She puts her head in his chest, and holds

onto him for dear life.



(remembers what the his future self called her)

It's okay, pip-squeak. I'm here now.

(trying to comfort her)

It's okay now.



(still sobbing)

It was so hard! I thought I was ready to be a big bad

demon killer like my mom and dad. Like all my aunts

and uncles. Like you. But all that death... I couldn't do it.

You said you knew I could do it, that you believed in

me. I came out of the time portal over six years ago! I've

been watching you for so long. Never being able to

talk to any of you... I saw my mom in junior high.

(looks up at him)

I watched you too. Saw you making out with Aunt Cordy

in her car. You guys used to do that a lot.

(sobs again)

I was so close to you all, and I couldn't talk to you!



(hold her tight)

You did it. If my future self was here, he would be so

proud of you. You came through. It's what Slayerettes do.


Her head shoots up.



(still crying, but slightly shocked)

What did you call me?




A Slayerette.


She can't contain herself, and she cries hard.



I've been wanting you to call me that, ever since I was

little. But you always just called me a junior member.




Well, now you're a full Slayerette. After all this is over?

I'll make you an official member. We don't have a

ceremony or anything, but I'll...



(starts to cry again)

There won't be an 'after this is over'.




Why do you say that?



(scared to say it)

There was something your older self knew. There's

only one way to stop the portal magnifier once it's

activated. And I don't know where they put it.



How do we stop it?


She points to his watch.



My power watch? What about it?



You know how it makes a shield?


Xander nods his head.



For now, yours is the only one that can do it. Beth will

figure it out in a year how to get the others to do it.

But for now, yours is it.

(looks him in the eyes)

When the magnifier is working, it sends out

energy...if you use the shield to cover the

magnifier, it will turn on itself.







(explains further)

The power you will need will be enormous. It will

take all the energy from the crystal inside it to work.

And it will take yours as well.



(taken aback)





The power level you have now is still low, since you just

got it. Every time the crystals get new users, it takes

them awhile to adjust. Maybe the you from my time

could do it and survive. But with you it will...




It'll take all my energy, including my life energy.




I tried to find another way. Any way! But... after you

won the war the first time, you captured the

magnifier. Beth studied it, and that's how I know your

powers are gonna work. But we couldn't tell what it was

made out of. Some sort of alien material. You guys

tried everything on it. You even fired a rocket at it in

the desert. It didn't get a scratch.



(leans his head back)

So, I'm the only one that can do it. And it'll kill me.



(starts to cry again)

I failed you.


Xander turns to her.




How can you say that?!




I had all this time to figure out another way! I

should have done more... I should have...


Xander takes her chin in his hand, and turns her head to look at him.




You know that's not true. We didn't get the damn

things till a few months ago. There is no way you

could have done anything. You did all that you could. I've

always known the risks, when I started doing this.

And hey, look; you said Buffy died twice, and she came

back both times.




But Jenny Calendar didn't come back. Neither did

Buffy's mom, or Tara.




We can never know what the future holds for us. I'll

take you back to the ship, or even better to the hotel...








Don't you want to see your parents? We don't have to

tell them who you are right away...



(still forceful)

I can't, not yet. You have to rally the troops. And I have

things I need to do before the attack. I can't tell you

what they are, but they have to be done. Maybe after

the battle is over... then I'll go see them, but not

yet. I need to be clearheaded, when all this hits the fan.

You taught me that.



(hugs her)

It's okay, plenty of time. I won't be around to see it, but I

know they'll be happy to see you. Whenever you

decide to meet them. And, hey; I have no regrets about

having to do what it takes to stop this thing. Too many

women I've known blame themselves for things that

they couldn't change. Don't you do it too.


She smiles at him, then she reaches, and grabs a small

box on the floor by the couch.



What's that?


She opens it up to show Xander. It's a needle, and

a tube for blood.



(off Xander's look)

It'll help convince the brass. Do a blood test on mine,

and that of my parents. It'll prove I'm who I say I am. But

there is one more thing. Something I have to tell

you. I know it won't matter much, with you going to


(can't finish)

But you should know. I've already made arrangements

so Aunt Cordy will find out as well, but not till after

this is over.


Xander looks at her, confused.



What is it?



(takes a deep breath)

What we're now in would be called an alternate

timeline, because that thing in the white suit and me

came back and changed things.




Yeah, Star Trek nerd here understands that.



(smiles, but goes on)

What you don't know, is this alternate timeline isn't the first one.

It's the second. History has been changed before.








Before I tell you the rest, I need to know something. I know

you will be very pissed off at this, as it caused a hell of

a lot of trouble when I was young. I need to know you'll

let Cordy deal with it. No matter how much you

want to take care of it, the Assembly has to be

stopped first.


Xander is very curious. He motions his agreement.



The first timeline was very different from the one we're

in now. At least, for our 'family'. In the original history

... Aunt Cordy did leave Sunnydale for LA. But

she came back two months later, and started living in

Sunnydale with you. You two got married, seven

months afterwards.



(jumps up, can't believe it. His mind racing)

How? What?


She takes his arm, and pulls him down.




I mean, why'd she come back? Because she wasn't

making it as an actress? She didn't like working for Angel?



(looks straight into his eyes)

You guys had the big...sleepover before she left.



(not getting it)




She came back because she was pregnant.

With twin girls.


Xander just looks at her in complete shock. Compared to this,

fighting bad guys to the death is now the last thing on his mind.








Skip found out, and he told Aunt Cordy.



(trying to deal)

But how did that timeline change? Did someone

come back, and have her remember to take a pill the

morning after? Give me a better batch of Trojans?!



(shakes her head)

No. She got pregnant, like the first time. But someone

took the babies, before Aunt Cordy ever knew she was pregnant.



(his face red with anger, he is almost shaking)

You know who did it, don't you?




Yeah, it was the Powers That Be.




What? The guys that boss around Angel, and give

Cordy the visions? The ones that gave me this

stupid watch? They took our daughters?!



(not flinching at Xander's anger)





For the love of God, why?




For all the big lip service everyone gives the

Powers...they're just middle management. They

don't have it all planned out. Angel came to LA,

meets Doyle, and they started his 'we help the

helpless' thing. But after Doyle died, Angel lost his

connection to the visions, and the Powers. He

was out of their reach again. Plus the Assembly

attack in that timeline was a lot worse. They took

almost everything. The war was still going on, when

the Powers decided that they need to rewrite

history to help themselves out.




So they killed my kids?



(shakes her head)

As I said, the Powers are middle management. They

can't take life like that; the higher-ups would really take

notice if the unborn children of two of humanity's

champions vanished. The Powers have them. Took

them from Aunt Cordy, before she even knew. The

Powers have them in a gestation pod thing in their

realm. After they hit full term...they would be frozen in

time. For us, years have gone by. But for those two

sweet little girls...they're still stuck in one single second.


She pauses.



Cordy became Angel's new Vision Girl, and you

led the war with the Assembly. As for the girls...the

Powers are thinking of bringing them back to Earth, in

another hundred years. Have them be Slayers or



She looks at Xander worried. Xander just stares off

into space. He is shaking with rage.






The sun has just come up. We see another black Humvee

driving along the road. In it are Gavin, Xander, and Beth. Xander is

just staring out the window, watching the building go by as they drive.



(shaking his head)

I swear, I just can't believe all this. Vampires and demons,

sure. But alien invaders from an alternate dimension? And

Martinson almost wet himself, when you mentioned

the Prometheus thing. Whatever that is.

(notices Xander is not paying attention)

Boss, I can't know how you feel about this, and... the

other thing. But...

(looks to Beth, who nods)

We all talked it over, and even if we have to go

against these Powers ourselves, we will. No stupid

watch is worth what they did to you.


Xander slowly turns to look at him, then to Beth. He

only nods his head at them in thanks.






The Humvee pulls up, and everyone gets out. Beth carries a small

case with her. Xander has a small, flat, giftwrapped package.


Gavin stops Xander, just inside the gates.



You still sure you don't want her told? Hate to say it,

but this could be the last time you ever talk to her.




She'll find out. After. If she knew now, it would only

make everything harder. And we don't have time.






Everyone is still in the same clothes they were in when

Melissa came looking for Xander the night before. Books are

everywhere. The group, including Lorne, is spread all over researching.

Kristen is sitting cross-legged on the counter, reading.

She looks up, as the lobby door opens.



(very relieved)



She jumps off the counter, and runs to him. She takes him

in a hug. He quietly returns it.



(talking fast)

What happened? They said you were kidnapped!


By now, everyone is around them.



I was. I was kidnapped. But thanks to a...friend, I was

rescued. And finally informed about what's going to happen.



You know who's been trying to kill you?



Oh yeah, and why they've been doing it. Kinda seems

Zeppo is no longer on my list of nicknames.


Cordy flinches a bit, as she recalls what she called him

years ago. Xander takes Kristen by the hand, and sits her

down on the round couch.



Kristen. Do you trust me?



(taken aback a bit)

Of course. With my life. What kind of question is that?




It's maybe the most important question I will ever ask you.



(not sure what to say)

You know I trust you, Xander.


Xander smiles warmly at her, then turns to Conner

who has taken a seat next to her.



(to Conner)

And do you trust her?




I do. Why?



If Kristen trusts me enough, then I need your help as well.



Help with what?


Every one is looking at Xander in confusion. He motions Beth

to come up. She opens the case.



I need a small bit of each of your blood. Just enough

to do a blood test with.


Most look at him in shock. Conner looks with suspicion.




Their blood? Is this for some spell?




Xander, what is going on?


Everyone is talking at once. Kristen yells.



(to everyone)

Shut up!


Everyone looks at her.




If Xander needs it, then he can have it.


She rolls up her sleeve as Beth comes, and kneels in front of her.

She gets a needle ready.




Kristen? Do you think that's a good idea? We don't know if...



(cuts him off)

I said. I trust him.


She looks away, as Beth puts the needle in her arm. A

test tube attached to it fills with blood in seconds. As Beth puts

a Band-Aid on Kristen, Kristen looks at Conner.

He shares her look for a few seconds, and nods his head.



(hold out his arm)

All right, do it.


Beth goes to work, and in under a minute it's done. Xander turns to Beth.



How long should it take?



Not long. A few hours at most.


She puts the tubes in a special compartment, then closes

the case. She and Gavin start to leave.



(turns to Xander)

Hate to rush ya boss, but the clock is ticking. We

don't have much time.


Xander nods as they head out. Everyone turns to Xander.




Xander, please. What is going on?



(sighs again)

You'll know in a few days.


He turns to where Fred and Gunn are standing.



I didn't really take the time to get to know you two, that

well. For that, I'm sorry. But if Cordy and Angel

consider you friends? Then that's good enough for me.


He sticks out his hand. Gunn looks at it for a moment, before

shaking it, as does Fred. Xander turns to Lorne.



Same goes for you. You would have been a hell of a

lot of fun, back in my high school days. Just be glad

you missed the talent show we did sophomore year.


He and Lorne shake hands.



(getting nervous at what Xander is saying)

Ah, Xander, what's going on?


He ignores her, and turns to Wesley.



Wes, I remember when I first met you. I couldn't believe

that you were the person the Council thought could

replace Giles. Or that you were gonna be any good to

anyone at all. It's good to know how wrong I was.


They shake hands.


Xander turns to Angel next.




(stops and smiles)

Angel. We hated each other for a helluva long time. After the

entire Angelus thing junior year, we haven't seen eye

to eye on much. Things are not great between us,

but what I said Buffy thought about you when we

went to fight the Master...? She was right. You are a

real person. And thanks for being there for Cordy

when she needed someone here, and in Sunnydale.


Angel just looks at Xander in shock, as does Cordy.

Then to add more shock, Xander leans in and hugs Angel.




Thank you, man.


Xander then turns, and sits next to Kristen who

is looking at him with worry.



Kristen. I've known you for a while now. And I know that

you'll be one of the greatest Slayers of all time. But

you should be remembered most for your large heart. Look,

I don't want to see another Slayer called for at least

70 years. You got that?


Kristen nods with tears in her eyes.



I know the running all over the globe avoiding the

Council thing was hard for you. It was for me as well. But

I'm glad I had you to keep me company.


Kristen breaks down in tears. She leans over, and hugs Xander hard.

They hold the hug for awhile, then Xander looks at Conner.



(to Conner)

And you. You be good to her. Or else I'm going to

come back, and kick your ass myself.


Conner nods slowly as Xander gets up, and faces Cordelia. He puts

his hands on her shoulders. He's trying to keep it together.



Cordy, when we were kids we hated each other so much.

But I'll always look back fondly on that day in Buffy's

basement...then in the classroom later.


Cordelia blushes.



(tears up)

We had one very interesting relationship. Ready to kill

each other one moment, then making out in your car the next.

(takes a deep breath)

I loved you, Cordelia Chase. And I always will.


Cordelia is shocked. She starts to cry, and say something.

But Xander puts his finger to her lips, stopping her.



I know we've both moved on, and made our peace

with what happened way back when. It's in

the past, but I just wanted to say how sorry I

still am that I hurt you. You're one of the kindest, most

loving women I have ever known. And I couldn't

control my stupid hormones, and I hurt you. I'm so

sorry, Cor.

(looks to Angel for a moment, then back to Cordy)

I know you've moved on. And I just want you to be

happy. Sure I was a jealous idiot a few times, but I

still just want you to be happy.



(between the tears)

Xander, I...


He stops her again.



Just be happy, Cor. Be happy.


He leans down, and picks up his jacket from the couch.

Xander gets the wrapped gift, and hands it to her. She looks

at it, surprised. He stops her from opening it.



Wait a bit. I went and got it after we blew up the school.


He turns to leave, and is about out the door when Kristen yells for

him. He wipes his eyes, and looks back.



I have to go. There's no more time left.


He spots Lorne again. He starts to sing, mostly to Cordy.



I've been searching deep down in my soul

Words that I'm hearing are starting to get old

It feels like I'm starting all over again

The last three years were just pretend

And I said, goodbye to you

Goodbye to everything I thought I knew.

You were the one I loved.

The one thing that I tried to hold on to.


He stops, he notices Cordelia crying heavily. He runs out.

Kristen and Wesley run out to stop him, but they just see the Humvee

drive away. As they come back in, they see Angel holding

Cordelia as she sits on the couch. She is sobbing. Everyone watches as

she unwraps the gift. It's a gold frame, when she sees what's in it she starts

to cry so hard she can hardly breathe. It's an old red door sign. In large white

letters, it says..."Janitor Closet."


Angel sits down, and wraps his arms around her. Trying to comfort her.

But Gunn notices the look in Lorne's eyes.



You read him, didn't you?



Yeah, I did. And, uh, he knew I would.


Cordelia and Kristen look up with tears in their eyes.



(can hardly get the words out)

What did you see? Where is he going?




He's going to his very horrible death. And he knows

he can't avoid it.






All we hear is the song Xander was singing.

Michelle Branch's 'Goodbye to you'.


Xander is leaning against the railing looking out at the water, and

the midday sky. Behind him, there are a lot more people in uniforms

around then we have seen before. We stay on him for a minute, while

he weeps softly. Then Melissa comes up, and takes his hand. He nods,

and follows her into the ship.






She is alone in her room sitting on her bed. She is crying hard.

She has several photos spread around her. We look over them to see her

and Xander in all of them. In hotel rooms, at clubs, playing in

hotel pools. She picks one up, and looks at it. We go behind her to

see it. It's Xander in swimming trunks, he is holding a bikini-clad

Kristen, ready to throw her into the pool. A playful look is on

both their faces. Kristen just stares at it, as she starts to cry again.






She is lying on her bed, and she is a mess. She has many

items on her bed. Photos, letters, and a large teddy bear with a

red heart on it. She also has her junior yearbook opened to a page

that reads "PROM 98". We see a large picture of Xander and her in

formal wear. We can see the large cast on Xander's arm in the photo.

Cordelia moves her hand over the photo, tracing the outline of her

and Xander. She has something in her hand. It's a large heart

-shaped (slightly melted) gold locket. She cries as we can see

her say "I love you", before she buries her face in the pillow. We

can see a large blanket being lifted onto her, by her ghost roommate.

She clutches the blanket to her chest.






We see dozens of the black armored troopers that we

saw in the flashback of the future. They are all lined up in rows. We

move behind them, to see a device on a platform. It looks just as

Alexis described it. It wobbles for a few seconds, and then starts to

hum as it spins faster, and faster. It fills the cave with light as it spins.