Act 4

Fade In:


Our World – Watchers Council – Lobby – Moments Later

The two groups stood facing one another from either side of the rift for what seemed an eternity. The silence was shattered by the doppelganger-Casey, standing at the front of the parallel Council’s forces.


Across from her, our world’s Casey’s eyes went wide. “Bloody hell! What ‘appened to my face?”

“Go! Go! Go!” Kennedy ordered, and swiped her sword in the enemies’ direction.

The two armies yelled and rushed towards each other. The other Robin stood where he was as the parallel Council’s forces flew past him. Then he turned and darted between the slayers, disappearing from sight.

“He’s crossed the bridge!” Robin shouted to Faith. “I’m going after him!” he said. Then he disappeared between the oncoming slayers.

“Robin!” Faith called after him. She went to go after him herself, but she spun around to see a sword come down toward her.

She dodged the sword’s arc and delivered a hard uppercut to the underside of the other Casey’s chin, which sent her flying back into a group of the parallel Council’s slayers. They tumbled over like dominos.

Buffy stood firm in the center of the lobby, skillfully spinning and weaving out of the way of the oncoming attackers. She grabbed one girl’s arm, brought her leg up and snapped the girl’s elbow across her knee. She screamed and, before she could retaliate, Buffy swung her around like a discus, flooring the surrounding enemy slayers. Then she let the girl go spinning into the crowd.

“Black Ops! Attention!” Amira ordered. “On top of the reception desk, now!”

The Black Ops jumped up onto the reception desk. Amira joined them. “Shoot subjects only coming from the bridge!” They raised their weapons.

Before the Black Ops could fire, a dark purple beam of energy shot across the rift and struck the Black Ops team. They convulsed for a moment before the energy let them go and threw them back against the wall, hard.

A dark blur shot from the bridge and came to rest on the desk where the Black Ops had been standing. It was the parallel Willow, her hair, eyes and veins pure black. She looked down at the fallen women as her own Black Ops group cleared the opening behind her, guns in hand.

“Shoot anything that moves or gets in your way,” she told her Amira.

The slayer nodded, but as she opened fire nothing except water came out. She looked back up at the other Willow, utterly confused.

A white streak of light cut across from the right and sliced the side of the other Willow’s cheek. She stumbled backwards, but did not fall off the reception desk. She looked around herself to see her counterpart Willow, her hair flowing brilliant white and the air around her shimmering.

“Bullets and explosives are so passé, don’t you think?” Willow asked them.

“Why if it isn’t Snow White?” the black-haired witch sneered. She looked back to her version of Amira. “Hand-to-hand then. Go!”

The Ops officer nodded and took off as the dark Willow leaped high into the air.

Willow did the same, with her arms outstretched and palms opened. She summoned two balls of golden energy in each palm and lobbed them toward the dark-haired woman, just as the latter summoned similar balls of energy, only dark red in color.

The four balls of energy collided in mid-air and exploded, causing a powerful shockwave that threw both women back, each hitting one of the pillars in the lobby. The shockwave also knocked the fighters below off their feet and shattered the entire glass front of the Council.

Kennedy delivered a roundhouse kick to doppel-Lorinda’s face. The alternate-Shannon had somehow gotten behind Kennedy and lunged forward with her sword.

Kennedy vaulted upwards and then gracefully landed back down on the sword’s flat blade. Shannon blinked, completely dumbfounded. Kennedy stomped her foot down on the sword, snapping it in two and sending Shannon recoiling back. As Kennedy landed back on her feet, she grabbed one half of the broken blade, twirled it in her hand and then threw it into Shannon’s chest. She looked down at the blade embedded in her and then collapsed.

“No!” The duplicate Lorinda yelled at Kennedy, fire in her eyes. “You bitch!”

She charged her, wrapping her arms around Kennedy’s waist and throwing her to the floor. As the younger slayer advanced, Kennedy delivered a powerful kick, forcing her into a katana that Dawn held, catching all three of them by surprise. Dawn let go of the sword and forced Lorinda back into the bridge.

Giles and Rowena were huddled at the back of the lobby, out of harm’s way by the stairs.

“You’ve got to go!” Giles tried to reason with Rowena.

“I can’t!” Rowena shrugged off his hold.

“You have young children!”

“So do you!” She held her defiant glare with Giles. “As long as Willow’s out there…” It was at that moment that Willow’s body was hurled into the wall where they stood. Rowena screamed and tried to rush to her, but was held back by Giles.

Willow was trying to get up, her hair flickering back and forth between her white glow and her natural autumnal hues. She looked up to see her dark counterpart standing over her. She began to advance on Willow, but the sound of Rowena’s voice as she struggled in Giles’ arms stopped her.

“Get away from her, you bitch!” Rowena shouted.

Both Willows looked over to see Rowena’s livid, crying face. The dark-haired woman was taken aback.

“Rowena,” she said, beginning to smile sincerely. “I never thought I’d see you again.” She sounded excited, overjoyed.

“It’s me, just…please, leave her alone,” Rowena begged the dark-haired woman in front of her. Surprised by the 180-degree turn in the parallel Willow’s demeanor, Giles lost his hold on Rowena and she took a few steps closer. “Please don’t hurt her,” she added, as Giles caught her by the arm again, ready to pull her back in an instant.

“Still protecting me, well…her,” the dark Willow said, pitching a thumb behind her. She closed the distance between them and reached up to stroke Rowena’s cheek. “It’s really you,” she breathed. “And you’re just the same as I remember.”

Willow, still on the floor, managed to click her fingers, and a white light engulfed Rowena and Giles. The light grew and then shot skywards, making both of the watchers vanish. Exhausted, she slumped back to the floor.

The dark witch stared at the spot where Rowena and Giles had just been and then turned back to Willow, the earlier merriment now gone from her face. Helpless and drained, Willow looked over toward Buffy, who was otherwise engaged.

Back in the fray, Buffy stumbled from the hard blow square to her face. As she composed herself, she saw a group of uniformed parallel slayers covertly break from the fight and vanish down one of the hallways. Hearing someone rush at her from behind, she grabbed a fallen sword at her feet and snapped around. Her sword sliced directly across the approaching slayer’s neck.

“Retreat!” Buffy yelled. “Fall back to the stairs!”

Faith cartwheeled backwards as an arc of electricity bolted through where she had just been standing. It lashed the slayer who was about to attack Faith and it swept her off her feet. She then fell to the floor, dead. As Faith landed, she looked around and Gwen gave her a salute. Faith replied with a nod and then ran toward the stairs, as did Gwen and everyone else.

Still slightly groggy, Willow felt her counterpart pulling her to her feet.

“She sold her soul for me…and I lost her.”

Though battered, Willow still mustered a grin. “Then she’s not the same as you remember. My Rowena had more faith in me.”

“Where did you send them?” the dark-haired witch demanded, slamming Willow’s back against the wall.

“Like I’d tell you,” she replied, short of breath.

Dark Willow slammed her against the wall again. “Answer me!”

“Over my dead body,” Willow replied.

The evil version of herself grinned. “Your wish…”

A light began to envelop both of them. As Willow grew weaker, her counterpart seemed to become stronger.

Seeing what was happening, Buffy kicked away the slayer she was fighting and raced over. She drew back her sword to strike but before she could, the dark Willow vanished and Willow fell to the ground.

“Can you stand?” Buffy asked her, as Dawn came over to the two of them.

“Don’t think so,” Willow replied.

“Is she okay?” Dawn asked.

Not taking the time to reply, Buffy handed Dawn her sword and took Willow into her arms.

“Retreat!” Buffy called out to the troops again. “Retreat!” She turned to Dawn. “Go support the Coven. Go!”

Cut To:


Outer Stairwell Area – Watchers Council – Same Time

The group gathered around the stairs and Andrew provided mystical cover fire. Amira and the Black Ops sluggishly limped past them. Andrew closed his eyes and raised a barrier, which this world’s Council forces effortlessly walked through, while the opposing Council’s members bounced back off.

Once everyone was inside, Faith grabbed Andrew by the back of his shirt, pulled him inside the stairwell and slammed the door shut. The doorframe then glowed.

“Good work,” Dawn told him.

“Why isn’t your girlfriend out here helping?” he asked, sounding drained and winded.

“No-killing-humans spell, remember?”

“Ah,” Andrew replied. “Would it still count since they’re not from this dimension?”

Dawn paused. “We’re not gonna test that theory,” she finally replied.

Cut To:


Outer Stairwell Area – Watchers Council – Same Time

The parallel slayers rushed the door, but were bounced back by its protective shield.

Look-alike Casey grabbed her radio. “They’ve fallen back. Sustained heavy injuries, as have we.”

“Ethan’s expanded the shield,” the other Buffy’s voice came over the radio. “That’ll keep them from escaping and getting reinforcements. Amira and her squad are on their way to retrieve the Scythe now. Assign a group to hold the lobby and the bridge.”

“Will do.” The alternate Casey grinned.

Cut To:


Stairwell – Watchers Council – Same Time

“Everybody, let’s go,” Faith said as she took off up the stairs, motioning the troops to follow her.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Hallway – Moments Later

The injured lay on the floor or propped up against the walls.

Those fit to fight were scattered along the hallway. Some tending to the injured, some securing any entrances to the floor, while others gathered and talked tactics. Xander and Jason Felix walked through the crowd, handing out what first aid supplies they had.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Command Center – Same Time

Rowena, Lori, Ethan and Giles watched the video monitors as the alternate Amira led her group from room to room. They all turned toward a noise at the door and saw Buffy carrying Willow inside.

“Oh God!” Rowena said, before racing toward them. Buffy gently lowered Willow to the ground and Rowena gathered her wife in her arms. “Are you all right?”

Willow nodded. “Magically drained, but yeah, okay. Boy, talk about kicking yourself in the ass.”

Rowena smiled, a bit more relaxed, but it only lasted a moment. A shrill, whirling emergency siren rang down the halls.

“Set condition red throughout the Council. Lockdown in progress. This is not a drill,” the automated warning sounded. “All personnel report to their respective departments. Repeat. This is not a drill.”

Faith walked into the room, with Kennedy and Grace behind her.

Faith panted, and looked toward the ceiling. “Since when did W.I.L.L.O.W. become SkyNet?”

“The security system’s not self-aware. Someone’s tripped it,” Lori said, as Grace walked over to inspect her findings.

“Find a way to untrip it. I want Rowena out of here,” Willow told her.

“Willow, I’m not leav –” Rowena began.

“She wants to take you back,” Willow stressed. “Not the Scythe, but you. A-and I might not be able to stop her. So we need you out of this place, fast.”

“Guys,” Xander said from the hallway. “Do we have any more medical supplies on this floor for the girls?”

“I’ll show you,” Lori said. She left the room, with Xander following.

“Well, Lori’s right,” Grace said, still looking at the monitors. “The lockdown protocols have been altered. The system’s been compromised. Network access has been restricted.”

“Hey, where’s Robin?” Kennedy asked.

“He went after the other Robin. I lost him,” Faith said solemnly. “Damn, I bet he tripped it – not my Robin, the jerkwad.”

“This is odd,” Grace said quietly. “Lockdown shuts off access to all levels, rooms and hallways…but the east stairwell is open, as well as the senior floor and Buffy’s office.”

“They’ve created a path…can you deactivate the lockdown?” Buffy asked. “That way we can face them, take as many out as possible.”

“Nope. This is read-only, which means when they discover where we are, they can come straight for us,” Grace said.

“Good news is, we’ve got a front row seat when they come to kill us,” Kennedy quipped, pointing to the monitors.

“Look, Grace,” Buffy pleaded, “how can we override this lockdown?”

Grace shrugged.

“Destroy the servers,” Willow said, now sitting up against the far wall. “Roll a grenade in the server room or something.”

“Uh, Will?” Kennedy said, holding up a grenade. “All we’ve got are water balloons.” She dropped it and it bounced, but didn’t break.

No one said anything.

“Okay, it seemed like a good idea at the time,” Willow said defensively.

“And it was,” Buffy agreed. “No bullets or explosives meant less casualties. But since firepower is out, what’s our next option?”

Willow brightened. “Ha! Power surge in the server room.”

Everyone stopped and then looked over at Gwen, who stepped up.

“Something that kinda falls under my specialty?”

“Fry the servers, since we’ve got it all backed up,” Willow instructed. “When that happens, everything will shut down, including the lockdown. We won’t have Internet or surveillance, but we won’t be trapped either.”

“Gwen, can you…?” Buffy said expectantly.

“Lead the way,” Gwen motioned.

“Siobhan!” she called out. The woman soon appeared in the doorway. “You’re with us!” Buffy told her. She nodded in response. “I want everyone in radio contact at all times,” she instructed. “Ear pieces all around.”

“I’m gonna find Robin,” Faith said.

“Just be careful, okay?” Buffy told her.

“I’ll go too,” Kennedy offered Faith.

“No,” Faith told her. “You organize the girls for the second wave. Take out as many of these trans-dimensional bitches as you can. Got it?”

Kennedy didn’t reply immediately, but finally nodded. With that, Faith departed.

“Everyone, move out on my order!” Kennedy ordered from the doorway to the slayers outside it.

“Kennedy,” Buffy hollered. “Hang back a second. Two things…”

As the pair met outside the hallway and began conversing in private, Willow slowly rose to her feet and took Rowena by the arm.

“You get out too,” Willow said, “Be ready to bolt as soon as that server’s toast.”

“And what makes you so certain that will be enough?” Ethan asked them.

The noise of Kennedy saying, “Are you kidding? I can barely float a pencil!” Buffy interrupted them briefly, making them look toward the hallway. They could see Buffy trying to shush Kennedy.

“What are you talking about?” Willow asked, turning her attention back to him.

“Come now, little red witch. I realize you’ve just been rattled about, but do you think these people only used technology to their advantage?” Ethan then nodded to one of the monitors by Giles. “Be a dear old mate and hand me that, would you?”

The remaining members of the room looked on in confusion. Giles pulled the monitor from its riggings and handed it to Ethan.

“Thank you,” he said casually before smashing it against the window breaking the glass and the monitor.

“What the hell are you doing, Ethan?” Willow exclaimed.

Ethan raised one finger to the group and then put it outside the broken window. With a painful yelp, his hand quickly darted back into the room. He held up his finger again, this time showing them the burned flesh.

He began to suck on it for a moment, then said, “I’d advise she not run out once the lockdown’s removed. It could prove quite painful. Repellent spell, quite effective, actually – good work. Bounces back anyone trying to get in and burns anyone trying to leave.” Ethan paused for a moment.

“Then what are we gonna do?” Willow said, growing worried. “I don’t have the energy now to protect Ro. And she’s going to find her. She might actually be here any minute. Maybe sooner.”

Giles looked to Ethan expectedly.

Ethan closed his eyes in response. “Ah, yes,” he said, and then opened his eyes, “now I remember why I never joined the council – it’s glorified babysitting.” Giving a deep sigh, he walked over to the two women. “Come along, Rowena.” He then turned to Willow. “Uncle Ethan will make sure your Precious is safe.” He motioned for Rowena to follow him, but she hesitated.

“Go on,” Willow told her. “It’s not safe here with me. She’ll expect us to be together.”

Rowena pulled Willow into a passionate kiss, which the witch returned with as much fervor.

“I love you,” she told Willow.

“I love you too,” Willow replied. “Go.”

“Yes, please,” Ethan replied. “Before my heart overflows and drowns us all.”

Willow just shot him an annoyed look, which he returned with a wink. He then followed Rowena from the room. Now alone, Giles turned to Willow.

“What happens if they get the Scythe?” he asked.

Willow’s eyes were still on the door Rowena had left through.

“It doesn’t matter,” she said in a soft, sad voice.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Elevator Shaft – Same Time

At the elevators, Gwen shoved her bare hand onto the pad, a blue spark flashed under her palm and the doors parted.

“In for a penny,” Siobhan sighed. She jumped onto the elevator cable and started to climb.

Buffy gave Gwen a nod and then motioned her inside. Once Gwen started up, Buffy joined them.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Hallway – Same Time

Faith looked at an air vent and gave it a solid kick, knocking it out.

With a slight grin, she said, “The things I do for you, Ace.” She then pulled herself inside the ductwork.

Cut To:


Our World – Watchers Council – Unknown Location

Willow’s dark counterpart walked through a wall and stood for a moment, taking in the surroundings. Not finding Rowena, she walked back out, disappearing into the wall again.

Cut To:


Stairwell – Watchers Council – Continuous

“Do you think we can do it?” Kennedy asked Andrew. Around them, the remaining fighters gathered near the entrance and on the stairs.

“With Willow out of commission, I’ll need female energy for something that big.”

“Hey,” Dawn said indignantly.

“As an anchor, I mean,” he added to them both. “But you’ve got power, Ken, no doubt. I can’t promise anything, but –”

“Andrew…the point, please,” Kennedy said impatiently.

“It’s certainly worth a shot, especially if things get, y’know, hairy, like Buffy said earlier. And it sure would cut their numbers down in case they decide to come back.”

Kennedy nodded and patted him on the shoulder in thanks. She then turned toward the stairs.

“Amira,” she called. “Ladies, group meeting, gather ’round.” They all took a few steps closer. “Here’s the plan…” she began.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Grounds – Same Time

Wesley crouched beside Kennedy in the parallel world.

“It’s sure been a while since I’ve been here,” Kennedy said from the cover of the trees and bushes on the Council’s grounds.

“We’re too late. The bridge is open,” he said. Through the now-shattered glass front of the Council, he could see the rift shimmering and flickering with light as well as the Council’s forces battling some of the trapped slayers from the parallel world.

“That would explain the light security out front,” Marie commented from behind Wesley. She glanced back at the two dead slayers slumped up against the compound’s wall.

“So, what,” Kennedy produced the folder that Wesley had given her and flicked through the pages, “I recite some spell and the shield comes down?”

“Well, you can do that,” Wesley said, “but then those managing the control crystal would simply change the frequency.”

“Ken, I knew this was a bad idea,” Marie snapped. “I should have killed him the moment I saw him!”

“Marie!” Kennedy glared at her and shook her head.

Wesley grunted and then went on. “What I suggest is casting a shield around our…your group,” he corrected himself when he noticed Kennedy’s inclined brow, “that matches the same frequency as the shield. We’d slide through undetected. That, and we’d have the element of surprise in our favor.”

Kennedy considered Wesley’s plan and then approved it with a nod. She reached for her radio and brought it up to her mouth. “All squads, converge on my position.”

There was rustling and from across the compound several small groups of Rebels raced with their heads down toward Kennedy.

Kennedy, Wesley and Marie stepped out of the brushes and watched as nearly fifty Rebels came to a stop around them.

Kennedy looked at Wesley, who tipped his head. She returned the gesture.

“Here we go,” she shook out her right arm and raised it, palm open wide, to the dark night’s sky. She closed her eyes and released the smallest of sighs, then flung open her eyes and threw out her left arm and hand toward the invisible shield. She then started to chant in an unknown, but definitely archaic, language. A pale blue light coursed from her left hand and washed over her body and up to her raised right hand. The light then grew brighter, expanding over the group in much the same fashion as an umbrella.

“Move out,” she commanded and started to walk forward, as did the group.

The group moved through the now-visible Council shield. The two colors, blue and yellow, merged and created a pastel green glow as the group passed.

Now safely inside the shield, Kennedy dropped her arm and the blue shield fell. The Council’s shield returned to its normal, invisible state.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Lobby – Moments Later

Jaye’s eyes widened as she saw the Rebels burst into the lobby, with Kennedy leading the way.

“Wha…” she snapped herself out of her reverie and pointed her sword in their direction. “Rebels!” she belted at the top of her voice, garnering the attention of her fellow slayers.

With her sword primed, Jaye raced towards Kennedy. At an arm’s length away, she swung her sword at Kennedy, who dodged and summoned a dagger in her hand, which she brought up hard and cut off Jaye’s arm.

Jaye screamed and Kennedy spun around and threw the dagger in the back of her head. Jaye’s scream cut off as she fell to the floor.

Marie led the Rebels and battled the Parallel Council’s forces remaining in the lobby. Wesley, meanwhile, ran up to Kennedy.

“What now?” she asked, raising her voice over the sound of battle.

“Dawn’s in the basement. You need to kill her and destroy the mirror to close the bridge,” he told her.

Kennedy nodded. “Got it. What about you?”

“I’m going to take down the shield control crystal,” he said. “The plan is to extend the shield across the bridge to seal in the other Council. If I can bring it down, then they’ll be able to send in help.”

“Right. Marie!” Kennedy shouted, getting her lieutenant’s attention. “Find every Council slayer you can and take them out!”

Marie nodded and motioned to the troops to follow her.

Cut To:


Our World – Watchers Council – Conference Room – Same Time

“Blonde or brunette?” Ethan asked Rowena as they settled into the conference room.

“Excuse me?” Rowena asked.

“Glamour, my dear,” he began. “She’s going to be looking for a buxom blonde. We need to make you look different, so we can hide you in plain sight.”

“Oh, uh…”

“Hurry,” Ethan told her. “She’s getting closer.”

“How can you tell?” Rowena asked.

Ethan grinned slyly. “Love may have redeemed me a bit, but some things simply don’t pass. I can feel her dark energy. So…?”

“Okay, how about like a slayer – late teens, brunette? Can you do that?”

Ethan’s grin widened. “Hold on tight, Love.”

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Command Center – Same Time

Giles sat at the surveillance controls as Willow, Felix and Xander watched over his shoulder. “Teams? The duplicate Amira’s troops are almost there.”

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Buffy’s Office – Moments Later

The door to Buffy’s office was sent crashing across the room. The other Amira and her team of parallel Black Ops slayers swarmed inside, their guns raised and poised.

The look-alike Amira lowered her gun and looked at Buffy’s desk. She blinked, taken aback by the sight of the Scythe hanging on the wall, its cool silver and ruby face gleaming in the dim light.

She pulled her radio up to her mouth and pushed the button. “Target acquired. We’ll be back to the bridge in five minutes.”

“Acknowledged,” Parallel Buffy said. “Bring it home.”

The Black Ops leader let go of her radio and made her way around the desk. She removed her gloves and reached up with tentative hands. She held it for a moment, a peculiar look taking shape on her face.

“Amira?” the guard by the door called. “Ready?”

She nodded and took a firmer hold on the weapon. “Let’s go,” she replied.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Command Center – Same Time

“The other Amira has the Scythe now,” Giles announced.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Stairwell – Same Time

Kennedy turned to Andrew and Dawn. “We’re up,” she said, holding out her hands. She looked reluctant. “Is this going to hurt?”

Andrew shrugged. “Never done it before.”

Kennedy took a deep breath and they all locked hands as Andrew began to chant.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Robin’s Office – Same Time

The other Robin sat behind the desk, his hands furiously gliding over the keyboard as he watched the monitor that displayed a schematic of the second floor.

“I’m gonna kick your ass,” a voice said behind him.

The other Robin looked up to see Robin standing in the doorway. He harrumphed and then stood up. Robin stepped forward.

Cut To:


Stairwell – Watchers Council – Same Time

A light suddenly blasted between Andrew and Kennedy, then disappeared.

“Did it work?” Kennedy asked.

Amira pointed her 9-millimeter above the stairway and fired. The sound of the gun blast in the small area made several slayers, including Kennedy, jump.

Amira grinned. “It worked.”

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Robin’s Office – Same Time

“Surprised you made it this far, peg-leg,” the parallel Robin jibed. “Between slayers from my world out for blood and, well, the stairs…” he crossed his arms and sighed, “…the odds weren’t exactly in your favor.”

“Now they’re not in yours.” Hot on the draw, Robin whipped out a pistol from beneath his blazer and fired a single shot.

The alternate Robin dived out of the way, over the desk, and rolled to the floor. Robin swung his arm around and went to fire again when he was rushed and thrown against the doorframe.

The two of them wrestled, each trying to push the other away. In the melee, Robin dropped the gun, but he now had another hand and used it to clamp down on his doppelganger’s blazer. He gritted his teeth, threw the man to his left and pressed him up against the opposite door frame.

The two men continued to struggle for control. Robin reared back his neck and head-butted his attacker, but he lost his footing in the process and fell back onto the marble floor. The other Robin stumbled out of the office, rubbing his forehead.

“Forgive me for not helping up the cripple, but I’ve got work to do,” he said, as he made his way toward the hallway.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Server Room – Same Time

Gwen, Buffy and Siobhan stood in the shadows of the server room, watching two slayers standing guard.

“Okay, here’s the plan,” Buffy told them. “I’ll come around the backside and –”

Suddenly a shot of electricity knocked the two slayer guards from their feet, then smashed directly into the servers, catching them on fire.

“Or, we could do that,” Buffy finished. Siobhan grinned. “Let’s get back downstairs.”

“Good plan,” Gwen replied.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Command Center – Same Time

The screens in the security center went blank. Willow turned slightly to see the computer also close down.

“Gwen did it…Amira? Ken? You should be free,” she told them.

Xander, Felix, Willow and Giles then saw something in their peripheral vision and all turned at once.

Dark Willow stood a few feet away, looking first surprised and then annoyed.

“Where is she?” she asked.

Willow cast a hand in her direction, but she pushed the newcomer only a few feet. She cackled in response.

“That’s all you got?”

She stalked closer. Xander and Felix both rushed her at once, but with a wave of her hand the two men knocked heads violently and fell to the floor. She then picked up Giles from his chair and tossed him to the other side of the room, knocking him unconscious. The entire time, her eyes never moved from Willow’s.

“I’ll ask again…” she sneered. “Where…is…she?”

“I don’t know,” Willow answered honestly. “Really, I don’t. We split up.”

Alternative Willow gave a heavy sigh. “Well, then. Guess I’ll just have to finish what I started.”

In a blur, Willow was suddenly suspended in the air. She clutched futilely at her counterpart’s wrist, which held her up without touching her. She closed her eyes and began to choke, but suddenly, she dropped to the floor. 

She looked up to see her alternative self glowing bright orange, then watched her unwillingly shoot upward. Confused, she strained her eyes through the light.

When it finally petered out, she saw Jeff had been standing behind the dark witch.

“I heard the ruckus. No such thing as leave time around here, huh?”

“Jeff,” she croaked.

He walked toward her. “I’ve lost too many people I love. I’m not gonna lose another.”

A look of sympathy, mixed with joy, crossed Willow’s features. Jeff pulled her up and she hugged the young man.

“Where’d you send her?” she asked, holding her throat.

“I don’t know. Teleporting? Not my strong suit, yet,” he replied.

Willow cupped his face in her hand and grinned. “Let’s say we find out and send that bitch home.”

He gave her a small smile and nodded.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Shield Generator Room – Same Time

A young man threw his head back and released a blood-curdling howl. Ethan held the young man upright with one hand pressed to his bare chest. An ethereal, red glow sparked under his palm, illuminating the young man’s veins and organs.

Ethan’s other hand hovered over a large, stalactite-like crystal, which pulsated with the red glow as it flowed through Ethan from the young man and into the translucent rock.

Then the glow stopped.

Ethan looked at the young man, whose head now hung over his chest. He pouted. “Shame. You were a bit of all right, mate.” Then Ethan let the man go and he sagged to the floor.

Ethan clapped his hands together and then turned around. He smiled. “Wes.”

Wesley moved out of the doorway and brought his right arm around from behind his back. He lifted his shotgun and fired into Ethan, sending the old mage flying backwards, straight onto the floor beside the dead young man.

He stepped forward and cocked his shotgun, two shells popping out of the shaft. He looked down at Ethan’s lifeless corpse. Then his eyes moved to the crystal control platform in the center of the room.

Wesley turned to the control platform and released another shot at the crystals, obliterating them. The drone of the shield generators faded out. As he made his way to leave, he heard someone walking behind him. He spun around, threw up his shotgun and fired.

A bloodied Lilah coughed and frowned at Wesley. “Wha…why…Wes…”

The blood frothed and poured from her mouth, and then her eyes lost their focus. Slowly, Lilah slid down the wall, leaving a bloody trail behind her. Wesley inaudibly gasped as smoke billowed up from the barrel of his shotgun.

Cut To:


Our World – Watchers Council – Hallway – Same Time

Robin ran down the hall and tackled his other self, bringing them both to the floor. They both got to their feet as quickly as they could, facing each other.

“Hit me, kill me, swap me across dimensions, I don’t care,” Robin said as he cautiously circled the other man. “But you raped Faith. You’ve endangered my friends and my family and I will not tolerate that.”

“She certainly didn’t complain,” the other Robin taunted.

Robin charged and threw him against the wall, sending uppercut after uppercut into his double until blood began to spout from his lips and nose. As he went to deliver a body blow, he heard a gun cock behind him.

Both Robins stopped dead and turned to see Faith standing in the hallway with a pistol raised.

“Faith!” they both exclaimed at the same time.

She tightened her sweaty grip on the pistol. “Used to be a fantasy of mine, two of you. Now…”

“Faith! It’s me!” Robin raised his hands.

“No, don’t listen to him,” the battered Robin told her. “I love you,” he added, garnering Faith’s total attention.

In a heartbeat, Faith swung the gun southward and shot him in the left shin. He yelped as he lost his balance and fell to the floor. She raised the pistol again, this time pointing it between the eyes of the man clutching his leg.

“Liar,” Faith said. She pulled the trigger, killing him instantly. Robin looked over at his dead doppelganger, then, after a moment, back up at Faith.


She let the pistol fall from her hand. She didn’t look at Robin. She just stared ahead.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Basement Vault – Same Time

The large, circular steel door to the vault rocked forward only once before it swung open and crashed against the wall with such a force that it fractured the concrete into pieces. Amy and Jonathan ran for cover.

Kennedy marched inside. Behind her, four pulsating, purple ornate swords followed closely, each bearing primeval runes, the air around them iridescent with an eldritch glow. Jonathan and Amy then readied their arms, their ordinary hair and eye color becoming replaced with black.

Amy conjured a spiky stream of light blue energy between her palms and released a bolt at Kennedy. It washed over Kennedy, but she was unaffected. Kennedy raised her hand and extended a finger toward Amy. One of the swords over her shoulder arched up and pointed the tip of its blade at her. Then Kennedy clicked her fingers.

The mystical sword darted at Amy, who tried to stop it with a blast of magic, but it was no good. The sword was fast, too fast, and swiftly cut through her wards and pierced her chest. She screamed while the sword lifted off her feet, continuing to move. With Amy skewered on the sword, together they flew through the air and slammed into the wall, which cracked around her on impact. Her head slumped forward, dead.

“No!” Jonathan cried. With several swift movements, he summoned a tall armored demonic knight beside him.

The knight drew its flaming sword and made for Kennedy with a cry muffled by its helmet. Effortlessly, Kennedy stepped out of the way of each swipe. She ducked and one of the mystical swords spun toward the night. The sword cut through the Knight, which exploded with a white light.

“Crap! Crap! Crap!” Jonathan dived out of the sword’s path, but it still caught him, slid through his side and pinned him against the wall.

Kennedy kept walking.

The area around the crossed-legged Dawn and the grand mirror shone with a bright green blush. Skye stood over her and morphed into her vampire visage. She growled and leapt high into the air, straight at Kennedy.

Kennedy shot her head up to see Skye bearing down on her from up high. The penultimate sword flew sideways into the vampire and took off her head. Skye’s scream died out as she crumbled to dust.

Dawn’s eyes flew open as she was pulled up onto her feet by an unseen force. Her pointed toes dug into the floor and she spun, leaving her shoes behind. The bright green waves radiating off Dawn flickered and took on a darker hue. She screamed and unleashed a powerful stream of searing jade energy at Kennedy. It met her with a blinding flash, knocking her off her feet and sending her flying across the vault to smash into a large metal cabinet.

“Oh, I’m gonna enjoy this,” Dawn said as she floated toward Kennedy.

Cut to:


Our World – Watchers Council – Stairwell – Same Time

“They’re waiting on the other side,” Kennedy reminded Amira, who nodded as she replaced the clip in her gun.

“We’re ready,” Amira told her. “Open it.”

Kennedy swiftly pulled open the door and Amira, her team and a group of slayers poured out from the stairway.

The doppelganger Casey was totally taken by surprise and leaped from her sitting position.

“Attack!” she screamed. She turned to yell something else, but Amira’s gunfire cut her down before she could give the next order.

Kennedy came up to Amira and said, “I’ve gotta get to the basement. Remember, you have to –”

Amira nodded and replied, “Go,” cutting Kennedy short. She then motioned her troops forward, while Kennedy motioned to her own troops to follow her.

Cut To:


Our World – Watchers Council – Basement Vault – Moments Later

Ten parallel slayers stood around the mirror, guarding it, as Kennedy and her team crept up. Suddenly a bolt of electricity shot over her girls’ heads, taking some parallel slayers by surprise and making others run for cover.

“Thought you might need backup killing the mystical mirror,” Buffy said as she came to rest beside Kennedy. Behind her stood Gwen and Siobhan. Kennedy smiled and raised an axe.

“Charge!” she told her troops, who all went after those of the parallel slayers who were still upright.

Kennedy raced to the front of the mirror and stood for a moment, watching the image before her. On the other side of the grand mirror, she saw the other Kennedy flying through the air, sword on her back, swerving and dodging mystical blasts launched by a woman resembling Dawn.

Now standing before the grand mirror, Kennedy reached out and curiously placed her hand on the glass. She watched helplessly as her double met a green surge of energy head-on.

Cut To:


Our World – Watchers Council – Basement Vault – Same Time

As the alternate world’s Black Ops group ran toward the bridge, their Amira was in the lead, holding the Scythe. A slayer took aim at her with a crossbow, but at the last minute her arm was knocked upward, sending the bolt away from her target.

Amira stood there, shaking her head. “Let her go,” she said.

The young slayer looked confused as she watched the other Amira jump onto the bridge. At the very edge of the bridge, the other Willow lay. She began to open her eyes and tried to move to her feet. One of her Ops officers shouted to her, “We’re done. Let’s go.”

She brushed herself off and started on her way forward, but found Ethan standing directly in her path.

“Oh, I’m gonna love this,” she taunted.

From the stairwell, Jeff and Willow began to approach the pair.

Before the dark witch could fire a shot, Ethan put her in a binding spell, catching her off guard.

“Get her in the hole!” Willow shouted.

Ethan shrugged and flicked his finger casually, causing the dark Willow to topple off the edge of the bridge, falling through the border between worlds.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Basement Vault – Same Time

In the parallel world, with the Scythe in hand, Amira marched over to Giles. She proudly handed it over.

“Well done.” With a smile, he took it and walked over to where Willow lay on the ground, holding her bloody forehead thanks to her rough landing. “All right, my witch,” he told her. “Now’s your chance.”

Buffy looked excited beside Giles as Willow took it in her grasp.

The dark-haired witch held it for a moment, her expression unreadable. She then turned to Amira and asked, “What the hell is this?” Amira, Giles and Buffy all looked confused. “It’s not the Scythe,” she added. “It has no mystical properties whatsoever.”

“How can that…?” Giles began.

“It’s a fake,” Willow sneered. She tossed it, causing a loud clatter.

Giles roared and pulled a gun, shooting and killing Amira immediately. He then turned his attention to Willow.

“Where were you during all of this?” he hissed.

“Get them in and get them home, that’s what you said. It’s not my fault she screwed up,” Willow replied hotly. “I did my part.”

“Not well enough,” Giles remarked, and then shot her in the heart at point blank range. Willow crumpled to the ground at his feet.

“Now what?” Buffy asked him, totally unphased by what had just occurred.

At that moment, a slayer rushed inside. “The Rebels have surrounded us, Sir.”

Giles’s jaw visibly tightened.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Basement Vault – Same Time

A smoldering Kennedy fell from the air and crashed to the hard floor, the sword hovering over her back no longer glowing.

Still up on her toes, Dawn dragged over the floor to the fallen Kennedy.

“I’ll hand it to you, Ken, you’re quite the spell slinger.” Dawn now hung over her. “Still, not quite as good as me. Besides, energy can’t be destroyed.”

As Kennedy raised her head to look up at Dawn, her eyes caught sight of her parallel world counterpart staring back at her.

Dawn caught Kennedy’s stare. She frowned and followed her gaze behind her. Dawn’s eyes grew, her mouth hanging open. On the other side of the grand mirror, Kennedy’s palm turned to a fist and she slammed it against the glass but there was no sound. She opened her mouth, her face contorted, presumably screaming but still, no sound passed the barrier between worlds.

“Well now, ain’t that something,” Dawn chuckled.

Behind her, Kennedy rose to her feet. The sword on her back lit up. Kennedy threw herself to the ground as the sword flew over her and straight into an unsuspecting Dawn’s chest. The young witch wrenched backward and fell to the floor, the sword penetrating the concrete, pinning Dawn’s body to the ground.

“Yeah, but you’re flesh and blood just like the rest of us,” Kennedy wiped her mouth and then looked up at the grand mirror and at Kennedy on the other side. She started to walk over.

Now in front of the grand mirror, the two Kennedys stared back at each other. The alternate Kennedy reached out and placed her hand on the glass. On the other side, our Kennedy did the same, moving her palm over her double’s.

The alternate Kennedy nodded and summoned an axe in her hand.

Cut To:


Our World – Watchers Council – Basement Vault – Same Time

Our Kennedy replied with a nod and tightened her grip on her own axe.

In unison, the two of them raised their weapons and swung. A roaring energy surge exploded as the glass shattered, throwing Kennedy into the air.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Basement Vault – Same Time

The surge washed over the alternate Kennedy at the same time, as the shockwave threw her across the vault.

Fade to White

Fade In:


Our World – Watchers Council – Lobby – Moments Later

From around the corner, hurried cries and footsteps could be heard. Turning into the lobby to see the pulsating rift contract and expand were the Rebels and the Council’s forces.

“The bridge is closing!” one of the newcomers exclaimed excitedly. “Hurry!” She stood ushering the slayers to cross the bridge.

This world’s Council slayers stood guard letting them pass.

Cut To:


Parallel World – Watchers Council – Lobby – Same Time

Giles and Buffy walked in to see the other Marie and the last of their slayers cross back into their world. He was seething. His anger, however, gave way to concern as the Rebels, including Wesley, came out of their hiding places to surround the small group.

“I want you to watch, Rupert,” Kennedy said, throwing him to his knees. “That’s what you’re good at, right?” She motioned to her troops that now surrounded them. She then leaned in closer. 

“We win,” she whispered.

Fade To:


Our World – Watchers Council – Lobby – Moments Later

The group gathered around to see the lobby look as it had before the parallels’ arrival – not so much as a paper clip was out of place.

Willow heard a voice she didn’t recognize call her name, then turned just in time for a teenager to suddenly pull her into a tight lip lock. Willow’s eyes went wide. She immediately put her hands on the young girl’s shoulders and pushed her back. But almost as soon, she moved in a bit closer and, slowly, she grinned. “Rowena?” she asked.

“Glamour,” the teenager replied. “He swears it will go away in the next twenty-four hours.”

Willow arched her eyebrow at Ethan.

“All right, forty-eight at the most,” he told her. “But she will be normal again, I swear.”

Buffy and Kennedy arrived with their troops, while Giles, Xander and Felix also emerged into the lobby, holding their heads.

“Did we win?” Xander asked.

“Looks like,” Buffy said. She then put one arm around his waist. “Gotta hand it to you, Xander. You do good work. They didn’t spot the difference, but…think you could make me another one?”

“Sure, just give me a few days to let the swelling go down,” he told her, still holding the side of his head.

“So it wasn’t the real Scythe?” Kennedy asked, as a chorus of questions echoed around them.

“Heck no,” Buffy replied. “Xander made it years ago. Like I’d leave the real thing out in the open. Please.” She waved Kennedy off.

“Well, where is it?” Kennedy asked.

“With a trusted friend. Let’s leave it at that,” was Buffy’s only response.

Cut To:


Our World – Buffy’s Apartment – Same Time

Behind a mix of hanging clothes in Buffy’s closet, against the wall, was the real Scythe. At the very top, like a vigilant defender, sat Mr. Gordo, Buffy’s pink stuffed pig.

Fade To:


Watchers Council – Faith and Robin’s Apartment – Night

Robin and Faith sat on opposite sides of the bed with their backs to each other, dressed in their nightclothes.

Faith stared vacantly out of the window, while Robin sat forward with his hands clasped, looking down at his amputated left leg.

“How did you know?” he asked quietly.

“Love is a word that’s used too much,” she said. “It’s used to fill girls’ heads with stupid ideas about rose bouquets, white wedding dresses and Prince Charmings. You never would have said it to convince me. You realize I know how you feel, so you don’t have to say it.”

Robin grinned.

“That, and he looked pretty thrashed,” Faith added off-handedly. “You’re still a damn good fighter when you need to be.”

A small silence fell between them. “Faith,” he said, getting her attention. “I do love you.”

She glanced back over her shoulder. “Yeah,” she softly sighed. “Yeah, I love you too…and I guess it is nice to hear now and then.”

Robin walked over and took her hand, pulling her attention away from the window and into his arms.

Fade to Black


Special Guest Starring:

Alicia Sliverstone as Heli Hamalainen, Stephanie Romanov as Lilah Morgan, Jane Seymour as Sophia Felix and Mika Boreen as Kathleen Felix


End of Before I Wake


Next on Watchers…

Ethan’s new life at the Council would seem to be going swimmingly, but soon the chaos will return in the form of an old friend back for revenge.


Click here to read “Turnabout” now!