Act 4


Fade In:


Stan’s Seafood Shack – Later that Night

Xander and Alex sat at the lakeside restaurant with menus in hand.

“Okay,” Xander began, “I’ve decided what I want, the appetizers are ordered, and we’ve got our drinks coming. Time to spill the beans.”

Alex smiled. “You certainly cut to the chase, don’t you?”

“How do you know about Wolf –?”

“When I finished law school, I was approached to join them, and I mentioned it to my professor,” Alex explained. “That’s when he warned me what they do. I thought it was pretty ridiculous at the time, I have to say. I mean, who would think monsters and goblins are real, right? Let’s just say, I found out firsthand he was right and turned down the position. Which, incidentally, proves not all attorneys are heartless, soulless creatures.” She gave him a teasing smile. “But now comes my question…how do you know about them?”

Xander rubbed the back of his neck. “I kinda…fight monsters. Well, not so much hands-on anymore, but I help by…”

“Making fence posts?” Alex asked knowingly.

Xander smiled. “You remember that, huh?”

“That was a pretty bad explanation for the wooden stakes,” she said with a chuckle.

Xander gave a snort in response. “I had to think of something quick.”

“Remind me to never ask you to come up with a spur-of-the-moment comment,” she teased. He smiled in response, and she went on. “So, what is that school anyway? Monster-fighter training grounds?”

“It’s the Watchers Council,” he told her. “We’ve got slayers, girls that battle monsters –.”

“I’ve heard about the Council,” Alex told him. “My firm said it had been destroyed, though.”

“The first one in England, yeah. But we’ve been rebuilding it. And my job is to provide the girls with the latest hardware they need in the fight.” Xander paused for a moment, a curious look on his face. “Wait a second. How would your firm even know about the Council?”

“The universe has a balance. For dark, there’s light.”

“And you work on the side of the light?” Xander asked.

Alex nodded with a grin. “Kinda makes me sound like an angel, but yeah.”

“I think we’ve got a problem here,” Xander confessed.

“Why’s that?” Alex asked concerned.

“Because I don’t find you nearly as annoying now,” he replied. Slowly, a teasing grin came to his face, and Alex returned the smile.

Cut To:


Library – Later that Night

“I think I’ve found something,” Faith told the group. “Karen’s been affected by a rare hellmouth condition that occurs in some people during a Hellmouth collapse. It’s like a one in eight hundred thousand chance of it happening.”

“Lucky me,” Karen remarked dryly. Suddenly she perked up. “Does this mean you might be able to fix me?”

Robin looked over Faith’s shoulder and began to read. “Looks like there’s a spell here we could try.”

“That’s good, but our High Priestess might not be up to such a venture just yet,” Skye reminded them.

Faith picked up the book and said, “I need to talk to Willow. Dawn, go get set for the ritual. If we have to try without Willow, then so be it.”

Dawn nodded and motioned Skye to follow her, while Faith left the room as well.

Once alone, Karen turned to Robin looking nervous. “Will this work?” she asked hopefully.

“I can’t say for sure,” he answered honestly. “We’ve never tried it before.” Sensing more behind Karen’s nod of agreement, Robin asked, “What’s the matter? If this doesn’t work, we’ll still keep looking. You know that, right?”

Karen nodded and nervously licked her lips. “Can I ask you something, Robin?”


“If you had a way to close the Hellmouth forever, but you had to kill the girl who would have been the next Chosen One, would you?”

Robin now appeared nervous. “What are you saying, Karen?”

“Nothing,” she answered. “Just a hypothetical thing. That’s all.”

Robin seemed unsure of where to start. “We have a slayer here… one that recently had a dream about you before she saw you. She thinks she died in this dream because of a demon attack.”

“Look, forget I mentioned it,” Karen said as she rose from the table. Robin grabbed her arm forcefully.

“Are you sending demons to harm her?” Robin demanded.

“What? No, I don’t know anything about Kennedy’s dream.”

Robin looked sternly at the woman. “I didn’t say her name,” he told her.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Willow’s Apartment – Same Time

Faith arrived at Willow’s apartment to see the door open and Rowena on the couch.

“Where’s Willow?” Faith asked.

“We got into it, and she stormed out. But I’m not leaving until she gets back,” Rowena said defiantly.

Faith suddenly looked worried, and Ro asked, “What’s wrong?”

“Maybe nothing,” Faith replied, before leaving as quickly as she came.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Library – Same Time

Karen swallowed nervously. “So, in her dream, demons are going to kill her?” she finally asked.

“Tell me what you know,” Robin ordered.

“I don’t know anything,” Karen replied.

Robin slammed his fist on the table. “What do you know?” he demanded angrily.

“The England Council,” she said, near tears. “They promised to fix me if I sacrificed the next Chosen One. According to their prophecies, they think it would have been Kennedy – a gypsy of Hispanic descent. They sent me here to kill her with a special dagger, to close the Hellmouth. But it has to be tonight.”

“What?” Robin said dumbfounded. “Why on earth would Robson do that?”

Suddenly, Karen disappeared before him.

“Son of a bitch!” Robin muttered, before running from the room.

Cut To:


Giles’s Apartment – Same Time

Becca lay in Giles’s arms on his sofa.


“You know, I might be able to get used to early retirement,” he told her as he stroked her hair. Becca smiled, but before she could reply, there was a knock at the door. “Then again,” he muttered.

After he rose, Giles opened the door to see Robin standing there.

“You need to contact Robson right now,” Robin told him.

“What for?” Giles asked.

“Long story, but he’s trying to kill Kennedy to close the Hellmouth, and we need to find out how, exactly.”

Giles looked surprised. “Oh, yes, absolutely.”

Giles closed the door, but then watched Becca walk over to his phone first. “What are you doing?” he asked.

“Calling Willow,” she answered. “Let her handle this. You’re off duty right now.”

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Willow’s Apartment – Same Time

Rowena picked up the phone when it rang.

“Rosenberg residence,” she said.

Becca paused for a moment. “Rowena?” she asked.


“Oh, is Willow there?” Becca asked.

“She left, but I can take a message. Is it important?”

“It might be,” Becca replied. “Can you ask her to call Rupert’s when she gets in?”

“Sure,” Rowena answered.

“Thanks, Rowena.”

“You’re welcome.” Rowena hung up with a pensive look, then rose and left the apartment.

Cut To:


Xander’s Car – Moments Later

Xander slowly pulled up to Alex’s apartment and put the car in park.

“Tonight was interesting to say the least,” he told her. “Would you like to do it again?”

“Yeah, I think I would – even if you are crazy for thinking Apocalypse Now is better than The Deer Hunter. De Niro is a much more talented actor than Sheen.”

“Let’s not get into this again,” Xander said with a smile. “Instead, we’ll agree to disagree…even though you’re wrong. How’s that?”

Alex shook her head, but said, “Fine by me.” She then nodded out the window. “Would you like to come up for a little while?” she asked, with a timid tone he hadn’t heard before.

Xander looked at the clock on his radio, which read 11:45 p.m.

“I’d love to, but if I don’t get home by midnight, I turn into a pumpkin.” Alex gave him another smile, and he went on. “Seriously, I’ve got a busy day tomorrow, but I really would like to see you again. How about this weekend?”

Alex leaned over and gave him a kiss on the cheek. “It’s a date.”

After she left the car, she gave him a short wave from the apartment entrance, which he returned. With a smile, he put the car in drive.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Slayer Rec Room – Moments Later

Faith walked into the Slayer Rec Room and immediately went over to Andrew.

“Where’s Kennedy?” she asked.

“She left. Vi needed back up –”

“She what?” Faith asked.

Andrew began to explain again, but Faith ignored him and gave the book to Jeff. “Get to the coven room to meet Dawn.”

“What’s going on?” he asked.

“She’ll explain,” Faith answered. As she turned briskly to leave, she came face to face with Rowena, nearly running into her.

“Becca called, asking for Willow. What’s going on?” the suspended watcher asked.

“Not now,” Faith said as she ran from the room. Robin saw her from the opposite end of the hallway and called out.


“Not now, Ace!”

“Karen’s on her way to kill Kennedy,” he told her.

Faith stopped in her tracks and turned around. “So, she’s not evil then?” she asked sneeringly as she began to move toward him. “I told you –”

“I realize that, but we can argue later,” Robin agreed. “We’ve got to find her.”

Faith began to jog and Robin followed along. “Any suggestions on how to get there before her?” Faith asked. “You know, with the stopping time ability and all?”

“Unfortunately, no,” he answered. “But she mentioned needing a dagger.”

Faith set her jaw in frustration, then said, “You stay here and search her room. If she needs that thing, maybe we can head her off at the pass.”

With that, Robin went in the opposite direction and Faith went out the door of the Slayer Building.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Karen’s Quarters – Moments Later

Robin flipped the mattress off the bed frame, while the rest of Karen’s items remained scattered about her room. Tossing the lamp over in frustration, he stormed from the room, empty handed.

Cut To:


City Street – Moments Later

Kennedy ran down the alley and was near turning the opposite corner when she paused, as if spotting something out of the corner of her eye. When she looked back, she saw Karen standing there.

“Oh no,” Kennedy muttered.

She looked out the exit of the alley to see Willow walking towards her. Kennedy’s eyes went wide in fear. When she turned back to Karen, the woman had disappeared.

Cut To:


Xander’s Car – Same Time

Xander looked across the street at the redhead walking along and realized it was Willow. He did a quick U-turn and pulled off to the side of the street.

Cut To:


City Street – Same Time

Willow glanced toward the alley, spotted Kennedy inside, and stopped.

“No!” Kennedy screamed, beginning to run for her former lover.

Suddenly, three huge demons, their mouths filled with fangs and dozens of tiny openings where their eyes should be, jumped down from the rooftop and surrounded Willow. Two of the demons wielded axes.

Kennedy raced toward Willow and tried to dive-tackle the witch out of harm’s way, but when she rolled to a stop, she found her arms empty. Confused, Kennedy looked over to her right and saw Karen lying on top of Willow on the ground. The demons looked at each other.

As Xander ran toward the group, Kennedy leapt to her feet and knocked down one of the demons. She shouted quickly to Xander.

“Get them out of there!”

As the demons regrouped, Karen scrambled to her feet with Willow. Instinctively, Willow stretched out her hands as if to cast a spell on the demons, but nothing happened. A look of frustration and fear washed over her. One demon swung its axe at her head, but she ducked, avoiding the blow.

Seeing the action from a distance, Faith raced down the street, as the three huge demons now surrounded Kennedy. Xander led Willow and Karen toward his car.

“Get back to the council!” Faith commanded, as she continued to run toward Kennedy.

“We can’t leave them here,” Willow argued as Xander hurried her along.

“No,” Xander answered. “Do what Faith says. Maybe that will stop the prophecy.”

Just then, a fourth demon jumped in front of the trio with a growl.

“No mojo, I take it?” Xander asked.

“Not a drop,” Willow answered ruefully.

Back at the top of the alley, Faith leapt at the closest demon, feet first, sending him to the ground. From inside her boot, she pulled a dagger and plunged it into his chest.

Further down the street, Xander, Willow and Karen continued to back up slowly.

“Any ideas, ladies?” Xander asked.

Karen pulled her own dagger from behind her waistband. “Just this,” she said, handing it to Xander.

“Think you gals can rush him?” Xander asked softly.

“Better than getting our heads ripped off, wouldn’t you say?” Willow remarked.

“Okay, get set,” Xander told them. “Go!”

Karen and Willow jumped forward with all of their weight, sending both of them, and the demon, to the sidewalk. Xander promptly followed and, mimicking Faith’s movements, stabbed the demon in the torso.

Vi and her team spotted the fight from the far end of the street, and she motioned them to follow her. “There they are!” she announced.

Kennedy got backhanded by the demon closest to her and hit the side of the alley. She slumped down, her eyesight blurry, as he approached.

Faith turned from her melee with the second demon to see the other one closing in on Kennedy, raising its axe. She ran up behind it and jumped on its back, trying, but failing, to snap its neck.

Vi and her team charged ahead and shot their crossbows at the demon Faith had abandoned, just as it began to reach out for her. As the bolts flew into the demon’s back, it howled in pain. Then it fell face first to the ground.

Faith still clung to the back of the remaining demon as it spun in circles trying to shake her loose. In the meantime, Vi’s team reloaded.

“Faith, let go!” Vi called out.

Faith released her hold and fell on her backside as Vi’s team opened fire again. The demon raised its axe over its head to strike Faith, but seconds later it toppled over, dead.

“I see you found our demons,” Vi said to Faith who was still sitting on the ground.

Faith didn’t reply. With an irritated look, she got to her feet, as did Kennedy. The elder slayer walked over to Kennedy and pulled her into a tight hug. But almost as quickly as it came, the embrace was replaced by a push and a slap in the face.

“What the hell?” Kennedy asked, shocked.

“I love you,” Faith told her, “but you’re bull-headed sometimes. Now, let’s go home.”

Once Kennedy’s surprise wore off, she grinned and followed Faith from the alley.

Fade To:


Watchers Council – Coven Room – Later that Night

As Willow and the rest of the Coven began to clean up from the restoration ritual, Robin walked over to Karen. “So do you feel any different?” he asked.

“Yeah, yeah I do,” she said. “I can’t quite explain it, but it’s like a weight’s been lifted. And I know you didn’t have to do this for me, especially since…”

“You took the high road,” Robin said proudly. “And without you, it’s possible that we’d have three dead Council Members on our hands.”

“I don’t feel much like a hero,” she told him.

“Heroes seldom do,” he said with a grin.

She gave him a slight smile. “Still, I think it’s best I move on.”

Robin gave her a nod. “Fine, but next time, trust me before anyone else. Okay?”

“I will, Robin,” she said, offering her hand. He shook it.

Robin then walked over to see Faith watching from the corner.

“I’m sorry for not listening to you, Faith. You were right.”

“In the end, we both were right. Karen was up to something, but she did the right thing in the end. Everybody’s okay, so that’s all that matters.”

Robin gave her a wide smile.

“What?” Faith asked, starting to grin.

“You,” he told her. “One of the reasons I love you. You really can see people for what they are.”

“Nah, being cynical isn’t a gift,” she said, bumping shoulders with him.

Robin let out a small chuckle. “Come on, let’s get some sleep,” he said. nodding at the exit.

Quietly, they walked out.

Cut To:


James Tyrell’s Office – Same Time

James Tyrell sat at his desk, looking up at the clock. Suddenly the doors to his office burst open. Robson and a team of five girls entered, brandishing crossbows and various bladed weapons.

“By order of the Watchers Council,” Robson began, “you are hereby being detained for questioning in the attempted murder of a slayer.”

“This is preposterous!” Tyrell said, standing up defiantly.

“Ladies,” Robson said, motioning to two of his slayers. They stepped forward and pulled Tyrell from behind his desk and out the door.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Willow’s Apartment – Later that Night

Willow entered her apartment to find Rowena asleep on her sofa, still waiting.

She smiled and put a blanket over the watcher, before turning the light out and going to her bedroom.

Fade In:


Office Tower – Conference Room – Same Time

The double doors to the room opened, admitting three men, one who was sharp-eyed and suspicious. The two others were muscle-bound giants who barely fit into their tailored suits. All three inspected the darkened conference room.

“Looks like they’re a no-show, boss,” one of the bodyguards rumbled.

“Looks like,” the leader agreed. He shrugged and turned. He had gone only a few paces before he realized the other two weren’t following him.

“Frankie? Johnny?” The two bodyguards remained motionless and unresponsive as he waved a hand in front of their faces.

“Sonofabitch,” he muttered. A pistol appeared in his hand, as if from nowhere.

“You won’t need that,” a refined female voice echoed out of the shadows at the far end of the room. The man spun around, holding the figure at gunpoint.

“Yeah, who says I won’t?” he challenged.

The Lover stepped into the moonlight, regarding the weapon pointed at her impassively. At her side was a black-clad blond.

“What the hell are you?” the man demanded. “What’d you do to my boys?”

“Nothing… yet,” the Lover said with a lift of her chin.

“I don’t like threats,” the man growled and fired his pistol three times. The image of the Lover rippled slightly, and behind her three bullet-holes appeared in the wall.

“Control your temper, James Volano,” the Lover said mildly.

“Wh… what do you want?” Volano managed.

“You are a businessman,” the Lover said, smiling thinly. “I wish to do business.”

Black Out



End of Time Out


Next on Watchers…

A partnership between a local mob boss and the Presidium results in Rowena’s kidnapping by some very human foes, and it’s up to Mia and the Council’s new Black Ops squad to bring her home.


Click here to read “Real World” now!