Brave New World
In the decade since the Sunnydale Hellmouth had been closed the world had changed a lot.
Somehow the absence of a Hellmouth in Southern California meant that the supernatural population on a global scale reduced by exactly ten percent.
“Wait, what was that? Exactly ten?” Buffy looked sceptically at Giles as he read the Watcher report to the group.
Faith raised an eyebrow, “Yeah, that seems a bit precise there G.”
Dawn tapped the computer screen in front of her, “He’s right, with Willow and the Coven’s help, we’ve done a… A… A global census if you will. Some species of demon have completely vanished from the world…”
“As have several other Covens, the Witches Council is very concerned,” Willow’s voice floated down from where she was meditating, five feet off the floor.
“It would seem that by closing the Hellmouth we’ve unbalanced the natural course of the supernatural world…” Giles removed his glasses and began to clean them.
“It’s much worse than that Rupert…” Spike’s voice came from a dark corner of the room.
The group turned, as one, to look in his direction, but he was still obscured by the shadows.
Buffy took a step forward, “Spike?”
“Yes and no luv,” Spike stepped forward, he wasn’t alone, next to him stood…
“Dawn?!?” Buffy’s head swung back and forth between the Dawn standing next to Spike and the one seated at the table.
There were a few differences between them, the Dawn with Spike seemed a bit more mature, her dress sense seemed to fit more with the classy women you’d expect to see walking the streets of the business district of LA on her lunchbreak, while the Dawn at the table was still a little subdued, her dress sense more teenage than was really appropriate.
The Dawn beside Spike smiled, “Hey Buff, guys… Me. I know what you’re thinking, but it’s not the same as Vamp Willow…”
The Dawn seated at the table took a shuddering breath, shaking her head, “It’s not… Like, not a normal thing to encounter another me…”
“Heh, honey, you have no idea how often it happens to me…”
“Yeah, Bit, as fun as it is talking about doppelgangers, I think we need to get moving,” Spike nudged his Dawn, “The Powers warned us we only had a limited time before the spell wore off…”
Giles looked intrigued, “The Powers? As in The Power That Be?”
“Nope, in our case, it’s the Powers That Were, we’re not, well, we’re not from your reality…” Alternate Dawn’s eyes glowed green with energy, “We’re tapping into the trans-dimensional energy of The Key to essentially jump through the worlds, we’re looking for the reality that let Spike close the Hellmouth…”
Willow floated down to land lightly on her feet, “I know I’m a witch, but I did take a few classes in quantum mechanics, what you’re saying is that in some realities Spike didn’t close the Hellmouth, right?”
“Actually, in all but one.” Spike said as he slumped down onto the couch and put his feet on the coffee table. “We’ve determined that there was literally only one reality where the version of me sacrificed himself to close the Hellmouth, all the rest it was either Angel or Buffy who did it, or it was never closed.”
“But… ” Buffy sat down suddenly, “Spike sacrificed himself here… But he came back, that doesn’t count right?”
Spike looked sad, “ ’Fraid it does luv.” He pulled a strange cellphone like device from his pocket and tapped on the screen, “Control, we have it, cease portal generation, check-in every 24 hours, will have Dawn move us back when we’re done.”
Dawn looked at Spike using the device, “That looks like pretty advanced tech…”
“It should,” Alternate Dawn replied, “Where we come from The Hellmouth was closed by Angel over a thousand years ago… We didn’t just cross realities we’ve crossed time as well, it was determined that 2014 was the year a good year before the damage became irreversible.”
“So…” Dawn cleared her throat, “So, you’re over…”
Alternate Dawn nodded, “I’m 1030 years old, well, I will be in a week, but what’s a week when you’re over a millennium old?”
Giles stared at Alternate Dawn, “But you’re not a vampire?”
“Nope, it’s The Key, the mystical energy somehow stopped the aging process, I’ve looked the same age for about the last 1000 years…”
Buffy shook her head, her long blonde hair waved as she did, “Okay, okay, we need to get this figured out, all the time travel and reality jumping can wait,” she poked a finger in Alternate Dawn’s direction, “Doppledawn and Spike here should go with Giles and Willow to see the Witches Council, maybe they can unravel what’s going on there, meanwhile the rest of us are headed for New York, Vi called earlier, apparently there’s some sort of massing of vampires, she called it a Vampire Sit-In…”
Alternate Dawn turned to look at her, “Did you say there’s a Vampire Sit-In in New York?”
Spike looked up at Alternate Dawn, “Dawn, luv, don’t…”
“He’s there, you know he is…” Dawn’s eyes hardened, “I owe him pain…”
The room lit up with a green light as Alternate Dawn vanished, Spike sighed, “She’s gone to New York,” He looked at Giles, “She did this in the other realities too…”
Giles frowned, “Who was she talking about?”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Dawn reappeared in a dead-end alley, she knew instantly that she wasn’t where she had intended to be, the smell for one thing, it was not the smell of New York at all.
“Youse oughta be careful doin’ that lady.”
Dawn spun to face the owner of the voice, “Oh?”
“Yeah, might get youse noticed,” another voice added, “By da wrong peoples…”
Holding up her hand, Dawn brought a ball of green light into being in her palm, the two figures cowered at the light, “Ahh, Creepernites, I should have known,” she sniffed the air, “Binghamton, right? That’s your native patch…”
“Yeah, what’s it to ya?”
Dawn sighed, her fingers flexed, sending a blast of energy at the demons, turning them to dust in an instant. “Better, now I should be able to…”
With a flash of green she was gone, leaving behind no sign she had been there save for some swirling black dust that had once been two Creepernite demons.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Dawn’s aim was much better this time, she appeared in an alleyway near the UN Building. She peered around the corner, the plaza was packed with vampires.
“Hmm, more sedate than the last…” She spied a vampire pacing at the front of the crowd, “Ahh, there you are, Jacques…”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“His name is Jacques Delacroix, originally from France I think… Not sure when though…” Spike looked at Giles.
“Jacques Delacroix? I remember the name, there were reports on him from The Watchers Council back in the day, some suspected that he’s very old, and not originally from the French region,” Giles paused, “Quentin once theorized that he changed his name to Jacques Delacroix, which means ‘Supplanter of the Cross’… From Judas Iscariot…”
“Judas, as in New Testament Judas?”
“The same, but as I said, it was just a theory, no-one has ever been able to trace his Vampire lineage.”
Spike cleared his throat, “Quite, but the thing is, Dawn believes it.”
“I do?” Dawn shook her head, “I mean she does?”
“Yup, you see, she’s had the power to move through time for a long, heh, time now…”
Giles nodded in understanding, “You think she’s actually been back and saw Judas betray Jesus at the Garden of Gethsemane?”
Spike just nodded.
“What…” Dawn cleared her throat, “What will she do to him?”
“The last time she found him, it wasn’t pretty…” Spike looked at the younger version of the woman he loved, “Let’s just say that it’s a good thing vamps turn to dust…”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
As Dawn watched Jacques whip the crowd of vampires into a near frenzy, she wondered what would happen when the sun came up. She laughed to herself, not that the sun would be of much concern to the vampires, in less than 10 minutes they would all be dust.
She frowned as a beeping sound echoed in her ear, Spike was sure to have told Buffy and the gang what she was up to, or at least what he thought she was up to.
But Spike hadn’t been there, he didn’t know the secret that Dawn was keeping regarding where she’d first met Jacques, and what had happened in that garden.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Dawn peered round the gates of the Garden, she could see Adam sitting under the apple tree. It was like a painting she had seen on a school trip once, the name and artist eluded her, but she remembered that it depicted Adam reading a book, supposedly The Bible, an anachronistic depiction really, but no-one questioned it.
The thing that had always seemed odd to Dawn was that Eve had been nowhere in sight.
“Heh, you’re wondering where Eve is aren’t you young traveller?” A hissing voice asked from behind her.
Dawn turned to see a man with a snake’s head, “Apep, I should have known that you’d be here…”
“What can I say my dear? I’m the original bad seed…”
“Well then, I expect you’ll tease me with the whereabouts of Eve?”
Apep’s eyes narrowed, “Au contraire ma chérie, she is in the next section of the Garden, admiring a lovely looking apple…”
Dawn looked at the demon with distaste, “The serpent. You’re the serpent who tempted Eve…”
“Look, we’re both time travellers here, lets dispense with the tenses, I am there now, being the serpent, and tempting her to break the rules, the rules laid down by The Old Ones.” He smiled, his head shimmering as the snake form gave way to a handsome blonde haired face, chiselled jaw and deep green eyes.
“Apep, why are you…”
“Please, call me Jacques, it better fits me don’t you think?”
“You ass.” Dawn snarled, “This is it isn’t it? This is why you tempted Eve?”
“So I could draw your cute ass here from the, what? 26th century?”
“25th.” Dawn answered before she could stop herself.
“Oooh ho! 25th, that means you’re a century ahead of where I thought you should be, that’s quite a feat young lady.” Jacques flashed a charming smile at her.
Dawn leapt at him, “I can’t believe it, all the evil in the world in my time, it was all you so you could…” As Dawn’s hands touched Jacques there was a flash of light and the pair vanished.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“Dawn! I know you can hear me, your comm unit is online,” Spike’s voice cut through her thoughts, “Buffy and I are on our way to you, do not do anything rash!”
“Too late Spike, Jacques is here.”
“Dawn no, you can’t change what he did…”
Spike’s words fell on deaf ears as Dawn began to stride towards Jacques.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“Damnit!” Spike shut the comm. unit forcefully, “Will, can you teleport us to her?”
“I… I guess I could, if I knew exactly where she was…”
Spike pointed to the TV. It showed Dawn striding through the sea of vampires.
“Ah, right,” Willow faced the team, “Well, hold on to your hats… If you had hats…” With a wave of her hand and a few muttered words, Buffy and Spike disappeared.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
As the light faded from her eyes Buffy took stock of where they were. “Looks like Will hit the mark.”
Spike nodded, “Come on, we have to stop her before she kills Jacques on live TV…”
The pair took off, heading for Dawn as she reached the front of the crowd.
Spike’s cry caused Jacques to spin round and come face to face with the fury in Dawn’s face. “Well, hello sexy, do I know you?”
Buffy had a few moments to realize that Spike was speaking into his comm unit while they approached Dawn, she thought she heard the words ‘ready’ and ‘teleport.’
Spike’s voice seemed to bring Dawn back to herself a little, and it was as if things began to move in slow motion.
Spike called into his comm “Energize!”
Dawn took a swing at Jacques.
Buffy leapt at Dawn, intending to knock her down.
As Spike and Dawn began to fade out of existence, Buffy made contact with her target.
Spike tried to cry out but it was too late, all three of them vanished without a trace.
To Be Continued!
Next time on Timeless: Where did Dawn, Buffy and Spike go? Who was Spike talking to? And what will happen with Jacques?
Find out next chapter… Maybe