Act 2



Fade In:


Watchers Council – Research Lab – Same Time

Xander pushed a button on the gun on his workbench and took a step back to where Willow was standing.

“No smoke this time,” she complimented. “We might be getting there, Xan.”

“Thank you very much,” he said indignantly. “Now you jinxed us.”

Willow smiled. “Go on. Give it a try,” she told him.

“Why don’t you?” he responded.

“Nuh-uh,” she said as she shook her head. “That blows up and it could mean bye-bye magic for me. I’ve lived that way once already – not gonna do that all over again. You go.”

Xander gingerly took a step forward again and picked up the weapon with the care of a priceless artifact. “It’s not hot, that’s good.”

Willow motioned over to the roses that were glowing in a vase. “Give it a shot.”

“You might want to take cover,” he told her.

Not needing to be told twice, Willow walked behind a couple of workbenches and slouched down, so only her head was visible. Once she was safely tucked away Xander pointed the gun and blasted the roses.

A short beam of energy shot out and the glittering roses transformed into a plain-looking bunch of daisies.

“Ha! It worked!” he said as he turned around to face her. “It killed the glamour.”

Willow stood up from her hiding spot. “Way to go!” she told him. The look of satisfaction didn’t last long, though. “Uh, Xan?” She pointed.

He turned around to see that the flowers were now on fire.

“Oh jeez!” he said. He grabbed an extinguisher to put them out. “Okay, we don’t want to use this on humans just yet. Well, unless we want them extra crispy. But it’s a start…”

“It sure is,” Willow agreed with a grin.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Shannon’s Office – Moments Later

Shannon sat behind her desk, while Liz and Joyce sat in front of it.

“So what do you think?” Liz asked Shannon.

“Actually, the bigger question is, are my friends and family going to die?” Joyce asked. “Did I see into the future, or was it just the sausage pizza I ate the night before?”

Shannon grinned slightly. “It has all the markings of a Slayer Dream. But I can’t say if that’s how Calendar and Jen will meet their fate. Nobody here can.”

“But slayer dreams are prophetic, right?” Joyce asked. “A window into what will happen?”

“A possible window into something that might possibly happen,” Shannon told her.

“Right,” Liz agreed. “I remember reading something my dad wrote,” she told Joyce. “A prophecy – although many people believe otherwise – isn’t really written in stone. Other things can affect the outcome.”

Shannon cleared her throat. “Based on recent events, I think you were given a heads-up, Joyce. I don’t know why, but I’m glad you went to Liz and told her. And you should be glad, too, that she took what you said seriously enough to come here.” Both watcher and slayer glanced at each other with a slight grin. Shannon released a heavy sigh. “Jen’s gonna hate it, but I’m pulling her from patrol. She’s only got a few months left on active duty, and she won’t like it, but I don’t think it’s worth the risk. At least not until we get this latest threat resolved. Will that make you feel better, Joyce?”

“Loads,” she replied.

“Since Joyce had this dream, Liz, I want you to oversee the taskforce and work directly with Rowena and Nikki. And Joyce, if you have anything else like this happen again, another dream, anything…let Liz know ASAP. Even if that means calling her in the middle of the night, got it?”

Joyce nodded, and Shannon mirrored her nod. With yet another sigh, she picked up the phone. “You guys report to Ro and I’ll give Jen the news.”

“What about Calendar?” Joyce asked.

“She’s not in regular rotations yet,” Shannon said, “so we’ll still keep her on the backburner for the time being.”

“Should I say anything to them?” Joyce asked. “About the dream?”

“What do you think?” Shannon asked Liz.

“I say let us handle it,” Liz told Joyce. “Jen will want to know the details, of course, but as for Calendar, let’s not worry her unless there’s something to worry about, okay?”

Joyce nodded her head in agreement.

Cut To:


Willow and Rowena’s House – That Evening

In front of the videophone, Jake sat holding a bottle and a small infant. Behind him, a woman appeared to be making dinner in the kitchen.

“So everything’s okay?” Willow asked. “Things moving along as scheduled?”

From behind her, Rowena, Joe and Ira – now in their early teens – were also making dinner.

“Yeah, it’s great,” Jake told her. “A little scary being in charge of a Coven, but Detroit did need one. Plus, it’s not too far away – Daniel here can still come back to visit his nanas, huh?” he said to the baby.

Willow just smiled. Joe, holding a head of lettuce in his hand, leaned over his mom’s shoulder to look into the camera.

“How’s my nephew?” he asked.

“Hey, Joe,” Jake said. “I thought that was you. I could tell by that ugly shirt,” he said.

Joe righted himself somewhat and showed off his red shirt which was emblazoned with the Ohio State University logo on the front.

“Two more months, buddy.” Joe waved his finger. “We’ll show you the true meaning of ugly when we tromp all over your ass down here.”

“Joe!” Rowena warned.

“Hey,” Willow said, slapping Joe gently. “No swearing. Go be productive and help your mother.”

“Looks like you’ve got your hands full, too,” Jake said. He motioned toward Joe, who was now walking back to the kitchen.

“It’s your mom’s genes,” she said, leaning closer to the camera and talking a bit softer.

“I heard that,” Rowena replied.

Jake laughed. “You’re in trouble again,” he told Willow.

Willow looked over her shoulder. “Par for the course, huh, hun?” she asked the watcher.

Rowena put the milk back into the refrigerator and leaned down to give her a kiss. She then turned to the camera.

“It’s okay, I’ve got her trained, for the most part,” she told Jake.

Willow poked Rowena in the side, making her jump and smile.

“Dinner’s almost done, guys,” Rowena told them.

Ira put some plates on the table, but Willow reached out and snagged him before he could leave. She pulled him to her lap and gave him a kiss on the cheek, which he reacted to with a whine of “Mommmm.”

“Say hello to your brother,” Willow told him.

“Hello to your brother,” Ira repeated seriously, before he smiled and waved at the screen.

Jake just laughed again. “I miss you guys,” he added.

Willow gave Ira a teasing, gentle push as she let him go. She then motioned to the baby Jake was holding.

“Enjoy it while you can, ’cause it won’t last long,” she told him as she looked over at Ira.

Jake grinned. “I am. I could do without the getting up every four hours, but he’s worth it,” he said, putting the baby on his shoulder. “Looks like Danica’s almost done here, too. I’ll give you guys a call in a few days, give you the update.”

“Take care, sweetie,” Willow told him. The others behind her also offered their goodbyes.

“You too, guys. See ya.”

Even after he had switched off the link, Willow sat there looking at the screen, a little misty-eyed. As Joe and Ira finished getting the food in order, Rowena noticed the mood.

“He’s only an hour away,” Rowena told her, leaning down to her ear.

Willow broke from her reverie and stroked Rowena’s face, which was only inches away. “I-I know,” she said with a small grin. “It’d just be nice to have more time with the grand baby, that’s all.”

“Well, come on, Nana,” Rowena teased as she rose back up. “Dinner’s ready. And who knows, maybe next week you can go there – check out the Coven operations and such.”

Willow brightened. “Yeah, make sure they’re on the right track and all that.”

“Exactly,” Rowena said knowingly.

Cut To:


Watchers Council – Liz’s Office – That Night

Liz was looking at her console display. Her lips moved as she read something. She turned her head toward the door when she heard a light tapping noise.

“Knock, knock,” a handsome man said as he entered the room.

“Hey, Brian.” Liz smiled. “What brings you by?”

“We had a date.” He then acted as if he was looking at his watch. “About an hour and a half ago.”

Liz looked back at her monitor quickly. “Oh, shoot! I’m so sorry. I was going over Watcher procedures and I lost track of time. They finally assigned me a slayer and –”

Brian held up his hand. “Look, Liz. I realize what you do is important. I do…but I need more than this.” He outstretched his arms for emphasis.

Liz sighed and began to shuffle books on her desk. “I’ve just been swamped this week.”

“You’re swamped every week,” he countered, “and I understand what you do is life and death for many people. I respect that.”

“But?” Liz asked skeptically, as she picked up another book and let it drop unceremoniously to her desk.

Brian nodded. “But I need a lover first, not a watcher…I’m sorry, but this just isn’t going to work out.”

At first Liz did nothing, but then she nodded. “It’s not an easy life,” she replied.

“I’m not mad,” Brian told her. “I hope you’re not either. I just don’t want to start asking for things you can’t provide…you know, like keeping a date for dinner.”

“So that’s it, then?” Liz asked.

Brian nodded. “I just wanted to stop by in person and…I don’t know…wish you a great life or…something like that.”

“Well, I, uh, I wish you the best, too, Brian. I hope you find what you need.”

“You too, Liz. Take care,” he told her as he walked from the room.

Liz closed her eyes and slumped down in her chair for a moment. Then after opening her eyes again she turned off the display with a heavy sigh.

Cut To:


Alex’s House – Foyer – Same Time

A young brunette girl ran toward the door at breakneck speed and quickly opened it, exclaiming, “Aunt Jen!”

“Hey, Trish,” Jen said, as she scooped the girl into her arms. “Daddy making something good?” she asked as she sniffed the air.

She scrunched up her nose. “Noodles,” she told her, and followed with a “belch” noise of disgust.

Jen just smiled and put her down. Soon after, the girl was off and running to the kitchen, with Jen following at a leisurely pace.

“Who is it?” Alex called out from the kitchen, not bothering to look around.

“Your suspended slayer sister,” Jen answered.

Alex shot around. “Suspended? What did you do now?”

Jen grinned. “When have I ever done anything?” she asked.

“Did you tick Shannon off or something?”

“No, Joyce had a dream and suddenly I’m in danger or something. It’s all BS, if you ask me. Shannon needs me in the chair so she can leave. She’s just playing it safe. I think.” Jen walked over to the stove and opened the pot to look inside. “Yummy,” she said.

“Pull up a bowl and a seat,” Alex told her. “I’ve got plenty.”

Cut To:


Alex’s House – Dining Room – Moments Later

“Where’s Maddie?” Jen asked, before putting some noodles in her mouth.

“Her mom’s,” Alex answered.

“Uh oh,” Jen said. “Your wife didn’t go running back to mom after a fight, did she?”

“No,” Alex said smiling. “Just visiting. She’ll be home later, so that’s why I made sauce. She can make fresh noodles when she gets back…”

“You guys doing okay?” she asked.

“We’re doing,” he replied.

“You should have married Liz,” she whispered.

“Gods, not this again,” he sighed. “She’s our cousin – practically a sister, for crying out loud.”

“Actually she’s probably one of the few people we’re not related to by blood at the Council,” Jen remarked.

“That is not true,” Alex chuckled. Jen just smiled. “Not that I mind,” he continued, “but what brings you this way tonight?”

Jen raised a finger and pulled out some papers from her satchel. “Mom asked me to drop these off,” she said.

“Right,” he said. “The Detroit branch. Jake’s doing pretty good, from what I hear.”

“Yeah, and he…” she trailed off and continued to look in her folder. “Damn it,” she said.

“Forget them?” Alex asked.

“No, yours I got. Mine on the other hand…” She let out a sigh.

“Just do them tomorrow.”

Jen seemed to consider it. “Nah, I don’t officially have the division job yet. Besides, I won’t have time tomorrow. I need to get it done tonight.”

Alex grinned mischievously. “You’re just so dependable and forthright.”

“Oh, shut it,” Jen laughed. “I’d have remembered if I wasn’t taking care of your stuff.”

Alex just laughed and leaned over to give Jen a kiss on top of the head, then headed to the stove for more food.

Cut To:


City Street – Later that Night

“Hey, how’d the test go?” Calendar asked.

She and Joyce walked side by side along the city street.

“Ninety-nine out of a hundred,” Joyce replied casually.

“Bitch,” Calendar breathed, making Joyce chuckle. “And Giles is working out for you?”

“It’s not as bad as I thought it might be,” Joyce replied. “So that’s good, right? I mean she could be all up in my face and stuff, but…she’s been pretty cool. So far, anyway”

“So you’re not going to derail her career aspirations, then?” Calendar teased.

“Are you kidding? I’d never hear the end of it from our parents if I did. Besides, it’s only one year out of my life, and there’re worse fates than Liz Giles being my watcher.” Calendar began to turn, but Joyce caught her arm. “Where are you going?” she asked nervously.

“Uh, home, through the park,” Calendar snorted.

Joyce stopped walking, causing Calendar to do the same.

“It’s a nice fall evening. Why don’t we stick to the street?” Joyce asked.

“Because heading through the park takes ten minutes off our trip,” she answered, pitching her thumb behind her.

Joyce gave her a half smile. “Getting lazy, huh? Well, you are looking a little flabby.”

“You slint,” Calendar joked. “Who you callin’ flabby? Come on, I’m tired. Let’s go,” she added, still headed toward the park.

Joyce still looked reluctant but, almost as if against her better judgment, she took a deep breath and then followed Calendar.

Fade To:


Lincoln Park – Moments Later

Joyce’s eyes never rested. She took in every inch of her surroundings.

“What wrong with you?” Calendar asked, noting Joyce’s jittery demeanor.

“Jen’s not around, that’s good,” she whispered reassuringly to herself, rather than actually answering the question.

“What?” Calendar asked, not hearing the response.

“Nothing,” Joyce said. “Hey, why don’t I race you to the other side? Ready?”

“Did you not hear what I said earlier?” Calendar asked. “I spent all day working out – I’m tired.”

“It’s not my fault you’re getting wimpy and flabby,” Joyce retorted, once more trying to use Calendar’s ego to get them out of the park as soon as possible.

“Damn, you’re acting goofy tonight,” Calendar observed. “What is it? You get your own watcher and now you’re suddenly better? Is that it?”

“No,” Joyce said apologetically. “This park tonight, it just gives me…” Joyce trailed off when she saw Jen heading toward them in the opposite direction. “Oh, no,” she sighed.

Calendar looked over to see Jen. “Hey, Rosenberg,” she called out. “Where are you heading?”

“Back to the Council,” she replied as she walked toward them. “I left some paperwork that’s not uploaded so I need tonight back at the office.”

Joyce looked even more carefully at their surroundings as they stopped. She noted, in particular, two benches about five hundred yards from each other.

“Yeah, well,” Joyce started, “Calendar’s tired, so we’re gonna keep moving.” She took Calendar by the sleeve and began to pull her away.

Calendar laughed. “What’s up with you?” she asked Joyce. She then turned to Jen. “She’s been acting weird all night.”

Jen then noticed Joyce’s shifty behavior.

“The park,” she muttered. Joyce looked at her for a moment and then just nodded. Calendar appeared totally confused. “Well, get her home,” Jen told Calendar. “I gotta scoot.”

“Be careful,” Joyce told her.

Jen paused for a moment. “You too,” she replied, as she started to walk away.

As Joyce and Calendar began to do the same, the sound of a tremendous roar behind them made both women turn around. They saw that Jen had come to a standstill. About four hundred and fifty feet from her was a twenty-five foot tall demon. Joyce looked over to see that the bench was now gone.

“It is sooo on,” Calendar said, as she raced forward to meet the intruder.

“Nooo!” Joyce shouted to her friend.

Calendar began to run toward the twenty-five-foot demon with a war cry, but before she could get too far, Joyce tackled her from behind, bringing both of them to the ground.

“What the hell, Harris?” Calendar yelled.

“No!” Joyce shouted. “We can’t beat this thing alone!”

Jen picked up Calendar and Joyce, each with a hand, and pulled them to their feet. She softly pushed them backward.

“You two run. I’ll cover you.”

“Not without you!” Joyce yelled, as the demon began to gain ground on them.

Jen hesitated only a few seconds longer. She motioned for all of them to run in the opposite direction.

The three women took off along the sidewalk. Joyce noticed the next bench and pointed in its direction.

“This way,” she said, leaving the stone path and heading toward the grassy area.

They were about two hundred feet in front of the second bench when it too suddenly sprang to life. All three of them skidded to a halt, with one huge demon in front of them and another gaining from behind.

“Great plan Harris,” Calendar said. “Now what?”

The sound of an explosion and the sensation of intense heat made them turn to look behind them. The demon that had been chasing them was now at least half its size and on fire.

“Smile, you son of a bitch,” all three women heard the person behind the demon call out.

When the first demon fell over dead they watched as Liz Giles raised Xander’s anti-magic ray gun again to point at the demon remaining in front of them. With a powerful jolt to the head, the demon began to shrink, before combusting into flames.

“Ha!” Liz said, as she looked over the smoldering carnage she had created. “I’ve been waiting years to use that pop culture reference.”

Liz pushed something by her ear and said, “We need a clean-up crew at Lincoln Park immediately.” She then turned to the women huddled by a tree. “I’d move away from any inanimate objects, if I were you.”

They all looked up simultaneously at the tree above them and then, immediately, began to run toward her in the open area.

“Not that it’s a bad thing, but what are you doing here?” Joyce asked Liz, who just smiled.

“What is that?” Jen asked, pointing to the gun.

“The anti-magic gun your mom and Xander just finished,” Liz told her. “Pretty nifty, huh? I was taking it over to my folks to see. Are you guys all right?”

“Fine,” Joyce replied shortly. She quickly added, “You didn’t answer my question.”

Liz raised a finger. “A watcher watches…always.”

“You’re spying on me?” Joyce asked.

“Observing,” she replied. “But now I’ve got a question of my own – why the hell did you go through the park?”

“Because she wouldn’t go the other way?” Joyce said pointing at Calendar.

“So if she jumped off a bridge, you would too?”

“Maybe,” Joyce answered. “Look, I couldn’t let her go in on her own, and you said not to tell her anything.”

“Tell me what?” Calendar asked.

“My dream?” Joyce reminded Calendar. “I didn’t tell you about it because, well…” She still seemed reluctant to say anything. “You, Jen and I die here in the park, killed by a demonic…bench.”

Calendar looked shocked. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

“She told me not to!” Joyce said, pointing at Liz.

“Yeah,” Calendar said, “but if you’d’ve told me why you were acting weird, I never would have –”

“Ladies!” Liz shouted, making them stop. “What’s done is done, all right? Joyce, this is one of those times when you should have said something to Calendar, but it’s over now. So let’s just get this mess cleaned up and see what we turn up, okay?” They both nodded. Liz then looked around them. “But again…stay away from anything that looks stationary, just to be sure.” Liz then turned to Jen. “I gotta talk to you,” she said, taking her by the elbow and leading her away.

Once they were out of earshot of the girls, Liz asked in an angry whisper, “I won’t run you over the coals in front of the girls, but…what the hell were you doing here? You could’ve been killed.”

Liz let go of Jen with an annoyed push.

“I left my files at –”

“No, I mean why are you even in the park? Shannon told you what might happen.”

“I figured it was just a ruse – something to get me off the regular beat,” Jen replied. “Why are you so pissed?”

“I’m not mad.”

“Could’ve fooled me,” Jen countered.

“I’m scared, okay?” Liz told her, with a slight whimper in her voice.


“Understand something, Jen, you could have been killed, and you are the closest thing to a sister that I have – that I’ll ever have. Giving your life to save someone in the line of duty, that’s one thing. To have it taken because of some…stupid action is something else.”

“I’m sorry,” Jen said sincerely.

“Don’t be sorry. Just improve,” Liz told her. She paused and then sighed. “Oh God, I sound just like Ro. I’ve officially become your mother.”

Jen half-chuckled, but then grew serious again.

“Look,” the slayer began, “I honestly thought Shannon was feeding me a line to get me behind a desk. I didn’t mean to scare you, really.”

Liz didn’t seem to relax, so Jen closed the distance between them and pulled her into a hug. Liz didn’t return it at first, but finally, she put one arm around Jen, the other still holding the large gun.

“Come on,” Jen said as she pulled back. “Let’s start playing CSI until the crews get here. I know you love CSI. Whaddya say?”

Liz slowly began to grin. The pair then walked over and began to examine the charred demon on the ground.

Fade In:


Watchers Council – Forensics Lab – Next Morning

“Any luck?” Liz asked as she entered the room.

A medical slab held one of the dead demons, with Nikki, Rowena and Willow all standing over it, examining it.

“Yep, Ro’s got her Scully on,” Willow said, making Rowena groan. The two younger women looked at them, confused. “Nineties TV reference,” she explained. They still said nothing, so she nervously added, “before your time…” Still the younger pair said nothing. “Go on,” she said softly and motioned to Rowena to answer.

“No, that was funny. I got it,” Rowena reassured her. “Of course, I’m the oldest person in the room.”

“Hey, knowledgeable old ladies?” Liz teased. “What’s the situation?”

“You want the good news or the bad news?” Rowena asked.

“At this point any news would be good,” Liz countered impatiently.

“You need to take time to stop and smell the flowers,” Rowena told her.

“Right now all I can smell is deep fried demon,” Liz said, motioning to the table.

“Point taken. The good news…two down,” Rowena said, motioning to the demon.

“Bad news?” Liz asked.

Rowena looked over to Nikki.

The younger watcher said, “There might be ten more to go.”

Black Out


End of Act Two

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