Deathwishes...Part XLI...

Archived at the Buffy Rebecca verse, www.geocities.com/buffyrebecca/Cicelypg.html

PG-13/Borderline R

Disclaimer: All BTVS characters remain the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and all other owner/creators of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series...

Summary: S7 tale...William's back, seeking help from his favorite Slayer-girl...Who may shortly need a little help herself...

Another Cicelyverse tale...

Written partly pre-Lessons, so no major spoilers that I know of but you may want to see episode 7.1 and on first to be sure...

***

Part XLI...

In the Magic Box, Willow and Giles waited for word from Xander and Clem, staked out outside William's latest crypt...While they also continued to review various spell material, including Wesley's Wolfram-Hart data...

Willow pondering the results of her little hypnosis session following her mental link to Anne/Buffy/Cicely...

Buffy and her past self, Cicely...Allowing their demon to run the show without a serious attempt at interference...A kind of truce apparently, deliberately arranged amongst them...

A dangerous bargain...And I oughta know...she ruefully noted to Giles...

"Yes..." he nodded.... "And as our previous effort failed there's no way to be sure Anne can be restrained and safely driven back once the humans behind this little scheme are dealt with...But, for the moment, we'll have to assume that Buffy/Cicely will help us to contain her once she feels the situation allows for it..."

"Buffy doesn't care...Right now..." Willow sighed... "Like me after Tara...And in Buf's case, there still is a chance to help William..."

"I believe...I hope...That she still feels she can fight Anne back when the time comes...But you're right Willow, she's decided not to let anything stand in her way in proving her love to Will..." he looked wearily at her...

"Anne is, after all, her wilder, instinctual nature as much as her darkness...The real danger is that, like you...She may overestimate her ability to control that nature..."



"I didn't care...Controlling my darker side was the last thing on my mind, Rupert..." Willow shook her head sadly...

But....My dear Willow...he eyed her firmly...It was on your mind...Somewhere...Or Xander would never have reached you...

"Thank you..." she smiled wanly... "I'd like to believe that..."

Well...At least now I can feel a little better...she grinned...When even the Slayer wants to be a fool for love...

***

In William's new crypt, Anne sat by the chained William, Xander and Clem likewise secured on their side, watching...

"Penny for your thoughts...?" she smiled at him a moment...

"You're handing our child over to Warren Mears..." he replied coldly... "That's what I'm thinking...Buffy..."

Anne stared at him as he stared hard back...Nodding...

"Thank you, Will...That really is the nicest thing anyone's ever said to me...But, in all fairness, she couldn't stop me..." Anne paused...

If she wanted to?...he finished...

"Don't underestimate the maternal instincts of a demon counterpart, sweetie..." she looked away a moment... "But, I would say she feels...We've saved Dawny/Amelia often enough...Maybe now it's time to help Amelia's father...After all the years of waiting, failing..." she sighed... "Now it's time at last..."

What can I say, honey?...she smiled...After a century long marriage ya either love em that much or ya can't stand them...

"Don't do this, Buffy...Cicely, find another way to deal with Mears...I'll help you..." he shook his wrist chains...

"Stop it...You'll hurt yourself..." she patted him...

"And don't overestimate Buffy's control here...Or my altruism, William...I still need Dawn to keep Willow off my back...I'm not prepared to just do my bit for the team and go quietly...I've told you that... "

Thank you...he eyed her...

"You're a kind sis, Anne..."

"Just being honest, love...The one...good...thing a demonic counterpart always is...Right, Spike?..." she grinned...And got up...

"Gotta concentrate now for a minute...'Cuse me, guys, goin' below...Xander?" she turned to him... "Don't try anything...I'd be sorry to lose you and Buf would suffer, but I won't hesitate to snap your neck if I have to..."

Just wanna be straight with ya, big brother...Like you were with me...she eyed him...

He nodded...

"And don't fret about my partners...I don't give a damn about Warren Mears...I'll deal with him and his bitch-witch when the time comes..."

It's just me you should worry about...she smiled...And headed to the ladder leading to the lower crypt, a large space widened out of the service tunnel connecting several mausoleums, once used for storage...

Clem staring coldly after her...

***

The human members of the new Trio made their entrance at the Summers' home in the good ole fashioned way...Amy knocking at the front door while Warren waited in her car, face covered by a newspaper...

"Amy?..." Anya stared at her on the steps...

"Hi..." Amy beamed an innocent...Just stoppin' by...Smile...

"Willow?...Or Buffy around?...I just wanted to speak with them...Ok?"

"They're not..." Anya replying coolly, paused and looked back at a sound from upstairs...

Dawn emerging from her room, fully dressed, with a dull, blank look...She came to the stairs and started down...

"Dawn?...Go back to..."

"Let her in, Anya..." Dawn told her quietly, pausing... "Anne wants her to come in..."

Anya whirled back and moved to close the door...Amy waved her hand and the door flung open...

"Sorry, Anya..." Amy looked at her now raging, demonic face...So that's Anyanka...

"Get out of here!...Or I will make you go!..." Anya snarled...Grabbing the door as Amy tried to step in, struggling to force it closed against Amy's spell...One powerful vengeance demon, Amy noted to herself...It should take five strong men to move that door now...

"Anya...Let her in...Or I will hurt myself..." Dawn called from halfway up the stairs...Holding up the stake Anne had had her conceal on herself...

"Anne wants her to come in...And me to go with her..." she dreamily told her...

Anya looked back, still struggling to close the door...

"Anya...She will hurt herself if you don't let me in..." Amy told her, a slight plea in her voice...

"She's in Anne's thrall, you know that..."

Yeah...Anya gave an icy look...In full Anyanka... "I know that...And you know...You and whoever is..."

Hey!...Warren called from the open car door, too impatient to maintain his position...Anya stared at him as he walked up to the front door... "What's holding things up...?" he asked as he reached them...

Warren...Mears?...

"In the unflayed flesh, babe..." he smirked... "So...You're Harris' lil' La Vengeance...Nice to meet you...But lets take this inside, ok?..." He shoved his way past her, Amy following...

Anya moved back to where Dawn now stood at the foot of the stairs waiting listlessly...Stake still firmly clutched in her hand...

"We don't want to hurt Dawn, Anya..." Amy hesitated... "Or you..."

"But you did...You and this...Murdered her sister... and you will hurt her again...And Anne did and will..." Anya glared...

"Hey, lady...We don't have time or reason for explanations...If you don't want kiddie girl hurt, play along without any trouble...and nobody gets hurt..." Warren gave Summers' pet vengeance demon a once-over...Quite a girl that Harris has landed, he sneered to himself...Bout what I'd expect that loser would wind up with...



Whoa...Hmmn...As she reverted to Anya...Not so bad at that...

"Now why wouldn't I want to take the word of a three-time murderer...?" she gave him a cold smile...

"But then hey, two times were "accidents", right?...We should compare notes, Mears...I've had thousands of "accidents"in my time..."

He stared back...

"And I intend to have at least two more before I turn in my demon work card..." she grinned... "Soon as one of my friends makes a wish..."

Warren glared but motioned to Amy...Who came beside him...

"Amy?..." he turned to her... "I don't think we want the lady to hear any requests contrary to our best interests..."

"I don't know if I can handle her, Warren..." Amy looked at the glaring Anya, now holding wan Dawn's hand... "And I'd just as soon..."

"Are you going soft on me?..." he whirled to her... "All I'm askin' for is what we talked about...A little naptime for our demon lady til we get her and little Summers safely under lock and key to keep us intact..."

"I don't know...The power required to keep a vengeance demon under...It could hurt her, Warren..."

He pulled her a few steps back with him...Whispering harshly...

Do I gotta remind you who helped me kill Buffy Summers?...he hissed to her furiously...Don't start playing Lil' Ms. Moral Conscience with me now...

Amy stared again at Anya who watched them carefully, still holding Dawn's hand...

"Anya never hurt me...Or you...And I don't want to start playing this game according to Anne's rules...She's got her own agenda, Warren..."

"I'm not a fool...I know that..." he nodded... "But we need lil' Dawny...We'll only have one chance with Willow and we can't start holding back now...It's too late for that..."

He relented a bit...Seeing the pleading look in her face... "Am, I'm not asking you to kill somebody...Now, anyway..."

Do it for us...he stared at her...Gripping her arm...

"It's our only chance...If there's anything left in you that cares about a future...With me..."

You can do it...Without permanent damage...And we'll take all the precautions against partner-girl we can...he nodded...

***

Deathwishes...Part XLII...

Archived at the Buffy Rebecca verse, www.geocities.com/buffyrebecca/Cicelypg.html

PG-13/Borderline R

Disclaimer: All BTVS characters remain the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and all other owner/creators of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series...

Summary: S7 tale...William's back, seeking help from his favorite Slayer-girl...Who may shortly need a little help herself...



Another Cicelyverse tale...

Written partly pre-Lessons, so no major spoilers that I know of but you may want to see episode 7.1 and on first to be sure...

***

Part XLII...

In the ground floor chamber of his new crypt, William eyed his fellow prisoners, Xander and Clem, chained to rings embedded in bronze memorial plaques across the room from him...

"Harris, Clem..." he hissed... "We've only got a few...Anne will have Dawn in Warren's and Amy's hands soon..."

Anya?...Xander looked at him...

"Even if they try they can't harm her seriously, Xan...Thank God for that little cause in D'Hoffryn's contract...But listen, can either of you...Clem?...Ole fellow, any chance you could use your talents a bit?..."

Hmmn...? Xander eyed his companion...

"I can try..." Clem nodded...Trembling all over, his loose skin looser than ever...

He paused as Anne came slowly back up from below...An unfathomable expression on her human face as she reached ground level...A vicious coldness, but somewhere mixed in, Xander noted...Sadness...Perhaps even...Somewhere, as she avoided Will's look...Shame...

The moment passed and she looked round, grinning at them...

"Geesh, guys...I am disappointed...Haven't you all escaped yet?..." she shook her head...Moving over to the middle of the room between where William sat chained, across from Xander and Clem likewise...

"So, c'mon...Who's loosed their chains and is ready to run off?...Or club me one the moment I turn my back?..."

She came over to Xander and Clem...Eyeing their chains and handcuffs...Then to William...Rubbing his handcuffed hand a moment... "Stop twisting it round, you're chaffing it..." she began...

A momentary startle in her eyes as he shook her off from his hand...A look she brushed off immediately, smiling again, a bit wanly...

"Expected better from my ole pals..." she sighed... "And here I was, ready to hunt Xander and dog-boy down...Even if I'd have to use my umbrella outside now..."

"If I were free, Anne..." William replied coolly... "You wouldn't be going anywhere..."

"Spoken like a loving papa, Papa..." she nodded... "So I'll let that challenge pass...For now..."

Anyway...Dawn is with Amy and Warren now, so you'd best be good guests and wait it out quietly...

A long look at William...A plea in there? Xander wondered...

"Anybody want anything?..." she smiled lightly... "Coffee, water, me...or maybe some blood, Will?"

"Yeah..." Xander eyed her... "Stop pretending to be Buffy...I'm sick of it...Keep your demon face and stick to the usual telling us how you and your new boy, Mears, are gonna rule Sunnydale and the world together after we're all dead...Will isn't buying your crap, Anne...And neither am I..."

She stepped over, looking at him almost gently...Still holding Buffy face...



Xander...

"My new boy, Warren Mears...?" she chuckled...And slapped him suddenly, viciously...

"Anne!..." William called... "Enough!..."

"Xander, I really should kill you for that one..." she went on, ignoring Will... "But..." she leaned to his ear...Whispering... "I'll leave it at this...I am Buffy...You knew it when you came to kill us and you know it now...You can't deny me and even she has to admit to it in the end...We are Buffy..."

But then...You oughta see Vallee, your demon, sometime, boy...she grinned...

"But maybe you will...Soon..."

Vallee...? Xander frowned...Oh, right...

God, I hate that middle name...

***

"Ok...I've done an official vengeance demon summons..." Amy looked at Anya who stared at her coldly... "So now...You have a choice, Anya..." she sighed at her...

"Either you can let me put you under for a bit...Or you can hear my wish...It's up to you which you think is the safer course for you..."

"But once you hear my wish...My vengeance wish...You're bound to it..." she noted...Anya glaring as Warren watched, with Dawn, who sat blankly on the Summers' living room sofa...

"Never hurts to have a leetle extra firepower for the team..." he smirked, as Anya pondered her options...It was true, after all...If Amy placed a formal wish for vengeance in her presence...

"Well?..." Amy stared... "A little nap?...Or do you wanna help me with Willow?..."

"Hey, let me try..." Warren grinned... "I gotta humdinger of a wish..."

"You haven't summoned me, Mears..." Anya sneered... "So take your wish and stuff it..."

She looked at the waiting Amy...Glancing at Dawn...

"If you let her hurt Dawn..." she smiled coldly... "I'll grant that wish I can feel right at the top of your mind..."

I'll give you your deathwish...As a freebie, no request required...she eyed the witch...Death...And then some...

Amy staring in turn... "Amy...." Warren's call pulling her back...She turned...

Startled a moment to see, somewhere, in his look...Behind the miffed annoyance at her delay...And her refusal to risk using Anyanka...The slightest...Plea...

Don't leave me...?

She smiled at him just a second...Well, if you really...Want me...The moment fading as quickly...

"Amy?...Enough already...Wish her to..." Warren began...

Anya grabbed at her... "If you make a wish, I'll twist it!...I'll make you both suffer, I swear!..."



Put me under...she sighed...

"Wish her to help us!..." Warren insisted...

"No...She's right, Warren...It's what these demons do..." Amy looked at him... "You know that as well as I do...We'd be foolish to try it..."

She waved her arms a bit and Anya rolled her eyes and collapsed...

"That should hold her for a bit..."

"You sure she's under...?"

"Yeah..."

"And...?" he eyed her...Amy nodding...Great, he beamed...Our lil' playlet worked...

La Vengeance didn't figure on this one...As if he, Warren Mears, weren't fully versed in demon lore...Well aware of the dangers of using vengeance demons...And hardly stupid enough to try one who was friend to his worst enemies...

"Anya...?" Amy asked quietly... "Can you hear me...?"

Yes...the crumpled Anya on the floor whispered, in deep sleep... I hear you...

"I'm a customer...Tell me about what you and Mr. Giles have in your shop...The magics..." Amy asked...

"We've a full selection...Can meet any needs..." Anya gave the full pitch...She'd always said she could do it in her sleep...

"Ask her about energy drainers..." Warren cut in...Amy hushing him...

"Do you carry anything capable of draining mystic energy...Something that stores mystic energy?..." she asked carefully...

"Yes..." Anya nodded... "Orbs of Callos...They'll store any kind of mystic power...On sale right now..."

"Where are they?...Anya...Can I see them?..."

"Back of the shop..." Anya feebly pointed... "I'll get them for you..."

"That's ok..." Amy gently told her... "Just tell me...Where?..."

***

Warren and Amy carefully guided Dawn to their car...Leaving a still unconscious Anya behind in the Summers' living room, courtesy Amy's spell...

Dawn sat blankly in the rear as Amy watched her...Sitting beside Warren...

Staring at the bandaged wrist Dawn had carefully covered with her other hand...

"Lets move..." Warren nodded to her...

"Time for us to pick up our partner and for you to start making Willow's day a bit rocky..."

Ok...Amy sighed...Key in the ignition...Hesitating...

He stared at her...



"What?..."

"Warren...I could release her...At least keep Anne from summoning her..." she indicated Dawn... "And help Buffy drive Anne back..."

And if I did that...The others, even Willow...Might...

"We murdered Buffy Summers, Amy..." Warren eyed her coldly... "You think her friends are gonna forget and forgive that...?"

"And we have a chance thanks to dear ole Anya the demon lady...If Anne and I can get into that shop and reach those orbs while you keep Willow busy..."

"Warren...Lets forget it...Screw Anne...Lets go...While we can..." she pleaded...Gently touching his arm... "I'll protect..."

He glared at her...You'll what?...

"Look, girlie...Warren Mears doesn't..." he paused...She smiling a bit wanly at him...

"All right..." he sighed... "All right...I do need your help, Amy..."

"But I haven't gone this far...Come this close...Put my life on the line...To wuss out now..."

You wanna get out and take your own chances...Fine...He waved at the door...

"Get out...If you want..." he eyed her...

"Anne was right about you...She knew you'd toss it in when things got hairy...I knew it too...So go on and get out..."

"Warren..."

Go...he glared...

"Or stay...But if you stay...You're in for the full monty...Make up your mind...Are you with me or no?..."

"I'll stay..." she sighed... "Willow...Or your Anne...Will kill me anyway sooner or later...But you're a fool, Warren..."

She suddenly kissed him...As he stared at her in surprise...

"There may not be time later..." she eyed him mournfully...And started the car...

***

A quietly thoughtful Anne greeted Warren, Amy, and Dawn as they entered Will's crypt...

"Hey, fellas..." she eyed the blankly-staring Dawn...As did William from his spot against the opposite wall...

Dawn...she eyed her sis...

"Go over to that slab and lie down...Go to sleep..."

Dawn went silently over and lay down...Asleep in an instant...

"She'll need to get used to it anyway..." Anne noted, smiling at Will...

Whose returned look was enough to leave even her a bit unnerved...

"I could have had her kill herself right in front of you, William..." Anne pointed out...

No need to get all hissy-cat...

He just stared at her...And glanced at Warren and Amy...

"Guess we're ready as we'll ever be..." Anne smiled at her partners...

"Did Anya put up much of a fight?...Poor Xander over there is freakin' out of his skull, I'm sure?..."

"She's fine, Xander...Just asleep in a temporary stasis field..." Amy looked over at him...He nodded briefly and turned away...

"Was she...Helpful?..." Anne looked at Warren...

"We got what we needed..." he nodded back... "The big display case, lower left shelf..."

Nice...She smiled... "Just about all the pieces in place..."

You ready...? she looked at Amy...

Yeah...the wiccan nodded, sadly...

"Like that enthusiasm, kiddo..." Anne grinned... "But try to keep it within bounds while you keep our Willow hoppin'..." she turned to Mears... "You ready...?" he nodded as she quickly grinned again at Amy...A sneer...

"Boyfriend?..." she finished, smiling at him...Starting for the entrance...

"Anne..." Amy called to her...

"If he gets hurt...You get hurt..." she told her...

Aw...Anne smirked, glancing at Warren...Smiling over to William who watched them...

"Ain't love grand?..." she sneered...

"I'll watch over lover boy...He's my partner too, sweetie..." she grinned...They headed out, Amy watching...

"She'll kill him, you know..." William eyed her quietly...

No...Amy shook her head...She won't...

"It's too much fun for her to leave him alive...Helpless...Once she deals with me..." she gently smiled at Will and waving her arms, vanished...

Outside, Anne carefully unfurling her umbrella, Warren stared at her...Well?...

"One of them will get free before we reach the shop, I'm sure..." Anne nodded... "So long as Amy does her bit properly...We'll have our chance..."

***

Deathwishes...Part XLIII...

Archived at the Buffy Rebecca verse, www.geocities.com/buffyrebecca/Cicelypg.html

PG-13/Borderline R

Disclaimer: All BTVS characters remain the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and all other owner/creators of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series...



Summary: S7 tale...William's back, seeking help from his favorite Slayer-girl...Who may shortly need a little help herself...

Another Cicelyverse tale...

Written partly pre-Lessons, so no major spoilers that I know of but you may want to see episode 7.1 and on first to be sure...

***

Part XLIII...

The slight nervousness Willow was at pains not to betray to Giles after she was unable to reach Anya at the Summers' or Xander outside Will's crypt was almost immediately overwhelmed by the shock and rage she experienced on seeing Amy materialize in front of them...

And as quickly, vanish...Though not before experiencing a wee bit of shock on her own part, seeing a Willow clearly contemplating a move...In the romantic department...On a rather unsuspecting Giles...As the two sat next to each other at the research table...

My God...Willow and Mr...Giles?...Amy thought, blinking at them...And she seems the one trying to get them...Going...?

Amy?...Willow looked at Giles...

Damn...Just when I'd finally worked up the nerve...Another moment and...

Whoa...! Amy!...

"Rupert...!...Amy, she's the one!..." she cried...

I mean in terms of killing our Buf...Not as my new love interest, Rupert...she thought...Quickly feeling for a tracking spell...Amy, that ungrateful...Worthless...Murderess...

Murderess...? the thought struck her even as she waved to teleport...

Like me...?

"Wait, Willow...!" Giles called...Too late as she vanished in turn...

***

"Well...Here we are...All on our lonesome at last..." Anne grinned at Warren as he drove Amy's car towards the shop...She keeping herself carefully covered against the afternoon sun...

"Kinda like our first date, sorta..." she chuckled at him as he glanced at her...

C'mon Mearsy...she beamed at him... "Don't tell me you ain't loving the idea...You finally getting Buffy Summers'...Her bod at least...To workin' with you..."

"It was what you had in mind all along with this little transformation scheme, after all...Wasn't it?...You could've just killed me...Buffy, anyway...When we were unconscious the other night..."

You wanted it all...she teased...Not just Buffy dead...But a Buffy...Or at least an Anne...Who'd give you the time of day...Or night at least...

"We got things to do Anne...This isn't the time to start trying to psych me out..." he replied, watching the road...

"I'm hurt, partner..." she sneered... "And here I was...Thinkin' ya did this all for love..."



"I'm not an idiot, Anne...I know what you're trying to do..." he glanced at her a second... "I know you're...Married, if you like...Cicely..."

She eyed him...

"You're the one doing this for love...Mrs. Walthrop..." he continued... "For love of your William, that is..."

"In fact...I'm dealing with all three of you, aren't I?...Buffy...and two Brits...One demon...Workin' together...?" he gave another quick glance...

She smiled thinly and nodded...Not bad...On the ball there, Mearsy...

"Right enough, mate..." she smiled, a phony Cockney... "My "sisters" and I do have our own little partnership going for now...And I was in with Cicely from the beginning, back in England...I'm bloody impressed, Mearsy..."

"I'm not so big a fool as you and your "sis" Buffy thought..." he looked out on the road, turning into Main St... "So you may as well can the games regards Amy and me..."

"Sorry..." she grinned... "Can't help doing what comes naturally...Especially to a guy like you, Mearsy...But you oughta know...Whatever else I am...I am a demon...And we hate competition in the pride..."

And there's always room for a few spare mates...I was thinkin' of including Xander as well as you and maybe my dear Giles and even my ole army buddy, Mr. Riley Finn...

Uh-huh...

"What do you really want from Amy and me, Anne?..." he asked...Keeping eyes on the road as traffic thickened on Main...

William?...he suggested as she stared out at the traffic, silent...

"We might still be able to do it for you...Amy anyway...And leave your sisters choking on your dust..."

"He wouldn't..." Anne blurted suddenly...

Warren grinned now...Ah, honesty at last...

"If there was a way...?...If you could twist things to your advantage?..." he paused... "Of course any plans you have with the soul sisters for getting the better of us would have to go in the can...But we were always expecting you to cross us, you know..."

She blinked at him...

"Being on the lam has improved you, Warren...But...William would never... "

"Suppose...He...And everyone else...Thought you were the real Buffy..." she glared at him suddenly..."Sorry...The souled Buffy, I mean...You have her memories, right?...You could play her....And Cicely...In a pinch...?"

What?...

"Lets hole up a mo...Amy should be able to give us a good half-hour with Willow not supercharged and all..." he turned into a open parking spot, about two blocks from the Magic Box on Main...

"William...Would know...They'd all know..." she began, looking at him...This was a turn of events she hadn't quite... "He knew before...Almost right away..."

"You're already partially transformed...The souls and demon are all present, it's just a matter of which one dominates..." he noted...And if Amy and I could make it seem that Buffy was dominant again...



"And...Even if that could be done well enough..." Anne stared at him...A vague, formless hope taking hold in spite of herself..."How'd I explain why I let you two get away?...Presuming, unlike your lady friend, you have a desire to go on living?..."

"Let?..." he smiled... "Hardly...We get away only after a ferocious battle...And your vowing of an eternal quest to find us and bring us to justice..."

A quest, sadly...Never to be fulfilled...he shook his head...You and your William...And any surviving friends, having to flee Sunnydale to escape our power, once we take control here...

"After all...With poor Willow no longer in a position to fight us and your friend Mr. Giles' magics in our possession..." he sighed... "You guys will have no way of fighting us for quite a while...If ever..."

"William would know..." she looked at him...But something in her eyes- grasping, desperate...

"You are Buffy, aren't you?...In a part-vamp body?...And he knows Anne's there, just below the surface..." he smiled at her... "So what's there to know...?"

"I tried to fool them before...He knew..." she sighed...

"Amy can cover you...And provide the explanation for your...Buffy's...Escape from Anne's control..."

"You...Amy...Really could do it?...Make them believe?..." she paused...

I could...Stay?...As Buffy...she eyed him...

"Buffy in a part-vamp body..." he nodded... "You couldn't let them cure you, naturally...But then, without Willow's ability...How could they?..."

Of course, making them believe you're Buffy's dear soul is your job...he noted...

"But I have faith in your acting ability...And after all...You do love him...Maybe all of them...?" he smiled... "In your own vicious little way..."

"You're lying..." she stared out the car window at couples passing along the sidewalk...In this body, I could even go out...There...she thought...

William with me...By night, anyway...Not me watching while they have him...Me...Anne, who saved him...Who loves him more than those cowardly, gutless, duty-bound human bitches could ever imagine...

"We can do it, Anne...We can mask you...And if you can give them a reason for believing you're their Buffy soul, back in the saddle..."

And give an Oscar-caliber performance as Ms. Buffy-Cicely Summers-Walthrop, tormented part-vamp Slayer, but ever-loving wife, mother-sis, and friend...

"At least until you get bored with your little family...And start a killing spree..."

"How could I ever...Even if you masked me...?"

"Well...There is a way to restore a soul to control in a vamp body, right?..." Warren grinned at her...

A way good ole Willow is probably trying to convert for you right now...

"The way your old boyfriend, Angelus?...was restored?..."

Angel...If you mean the soul...she corrected...And the spell didn't leave Angelus behind in the body...



How?...she stared at him...

"Angelus had quite a rep in the underworld...His reappearances and re-exiling raised quite a stir...And as your name came up, Buffy...I naturally was interested..."

Though, to be honest, it was good ole Jonathan who was fascinated by the whole thing...But I remembered it...

"Amy and I have spent a little time going over what info there is on it..." he smiled...

***

At William's crypt...Anne's faith in her friends and lover were...Albeit slowly...Proving justified...

"Clem?..." William called to him... "Any luck?..."

A littttle...More...Clem groaned...Tugging at his loosened skin...

"Careful..." Xander eyed the smeared blood on his friend's wrist...

"Just a little..." the demon gave a quiet look over to the heavily sleeping Dawn... "Mooore...Uh..."

His hand...And a hefty patch of loose, bloodied skin...Slipped out of a handcuff...

"Got it..." he sighed...Stretching his arm and hand out towards the little table where Buffy and Will had eaten their first full meal together in a century...And grabbing a knife...

Will staring at the torn, hanging skin...

"No problem..." Clem looked at the wound... "Smarts a little, heals like that..." he lied...Starting to unwrap chain from his chest...While handing the knife to Xander who began picking at his handcuff lock...

"Thanks, old fellow..." William nodded...

"Of course, you understand...I'll have to speak to the Missus regarding who she'll allow our Amelia-Dawn to date..." he grinned...

***

"This...?" Anne looked at the charm...Warren nodded...

"It's a simple reflexive charm...But it will do the job, thanks to your souls already being present...The curse will be deflected harmlessly and your demon essence will be masked by its reflection of the souls' presence...Not even a vamp will be able to sense you, so long as you wear it and the curse is maintained..."

"Willow's naturally not gonna use the curse unless there's no other way...But if she felt she had to use it in some form...And if dear restored soul-in-part-vamp Buffy then saved her from the foul Warren and Amy..." Warren smiled...

"I thought you wanted Willow dead...?" Anne stared at him... "You're ready to let her live?...Come after you...?"

"Once she storms in...And she "saves" you just as the dreadful Anne is about to kill her or your dear Watcher...We hit her with the orbs...She drains...And while drained, Amy blocks her power off...Permanently..."

And who cares if little Willow Rosenberg lives once she's powerless...he grinned...

"You save her from us...Heck, save em all if you want...Take em out of town to safety...And we take over..."

"Giles would have the Council counterattack..." she eyed him... "Even if Willow couldn't...They'd never abandon the Hellmouth to you two..."

Council, smouncil...Mears waved a hand...Without Willow's power, they wouldn't stand a chance once we tap the Hellmouth...

"They'd check me..."

"And find two souls and a demon cohabiting...The demon held down by a special curse..."

"They're not fools, Warren...And the Council's got more strengths than either of us imagines, I'm sure..."

"My, my..." he shook his head... "Amy made me hold back this part until now in case you seemed reluctant and ready to go running to Willow, but I expected more courage and daring than this from Buffy Summers' demon...Do you want a crack at your William's love...For all time...or no?...Are you the true Mrs. Walthrop?...Or is Buffy-Cicely...?"

Once you get there, how long you last as beloved Buffy is up to you...But we can give you the chance...he beamed...

Admit it, Annie girl...he grinned... "You're liking it...And it is better than the "raid-and-try-to-kill-Willow" thing you thought we had in mind..."

She stared at him....

"Amy didn't seem to have much faith in your scheme...Though it's true, I didn't realize it was quite as elaborate as this..."

"Amy's sensible as she is suicidal...She sees the holes and the half-empty glass...Like your William...And she's right, we may very well lose it all...But that's why we...You and me, Anne...Are essential...We're the daring ones...But she'll come through for us...I know she can do it..."

Anne looked at her hands, thinking...

Who'd of thought...Caught by surprise by Warren Mears' plan...But then, his schemes had been improving of late...

"Well?...Mrs. Walthrop?..." he eyed her... "Ready to turn over a new leaf as the restored champion of good...?...And win back your William's love?...Or maybe you should just go back to Hell and let us duke it out with your sisters and Ms. Rosenberg?"

***

Deathwishes...Part XLIV...

Archived at the Buffy Rebecca verse, www.geocities.com/buffyrebecca/Cicelypg.html

PG-13/Borderline R

Disclaimer: All BTVS characters remain the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and all other owner/creators of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series...

Summary: S7 tale...William's back, seeking help from his favorite Slayer-girl...Who may shortly need a little help herself...

Another Cicelyverse tale...

Written partly pre-Lessons, so no major spoilers that I know of but you may want to see episode 7.1 and on first to be sure...

***

Part XLIV...

The phone rang in the Magic Box...Giles, buried in a book of tracking spells, with two mystic energy orbs on the research table in front of him, paused to grab it...



"Giles?..." Xander's voice... "Amy is..."

"We know Xander, Amy was here just now...Willow left in pursuit of her...Where are you?"

"Just by Will's cemetery...Anne and her partners grabbed us, I'm afraid...But Clem got us free after they left...And Dawn is safe with Will..."

Giles...he paused...

"It's Warren...He's alive...He did this..."

Mears?...Giles gasped...Alive?...

"Willow killed a clone, Amy helped him...Has been helping him...And Anne may be working with him...Or at least playing along with them..."

"Yes...We know...We believe...Well, save that for now...What do you and William propose to do?"

"Warren and Anne are coming for you, Giles...They want the stuff at the shop...They're hoping to use it against Willow...Amy must be trying to pull her away for them..."

And has succeeded, I'm afraid...Giles sighed...

"You've got to hold them off, Giles...Til we can get to you..."

"Xander?...Anya?..."

"Amy said she was ok, just unconscious at Buffy's...But..."

"I see...Go there first, Xander...I'll do what I can here...Though I'm not sure what they could be after here...I may be able to block Anne's entry here..."

"As for our dear Mr. Mears...I relish the pleasure of meeting him..."

"Well...Will's coming to you straight with Clem via the ole Spikemobile...I'll come soon as I can, though I don't think Amy was lying about An...I doubt she could kill her if she wanted to..."

"Can William make it to the car?"

"Clem will get him there...Besides..." A wan chuckle... "If we tried to stop him, the loving husband here would knock us silly and come anyway...In fact..." he waved hastily at the figures racing by...One covered in blankets and coat...

"They're on their way..."

"All right...I'd best get to it..."

"Willow's..." Xander choked a bit... "She's free, Giles...She didn't kill him..."

Yes...A pause... "It's wonderful, Xander...But...You do realize...She still knows she was capable of it..."

Yeah...A sigh... "But she knows now...Even Buffy is capable of it..." A pause... "I'd better let you go and head out myself...They've just pulled out...Good luck, Giles..."

"You, too..." he hung up...

Hmmn...Giles eyed the orbs...Well, no point in tracking her now...Teleportation will have to wait...



Oh, Willow...My headstrong Willow...God keep her safe, poor darling...

Well...A barrier spell is called for...And with these orbs to power it...Anne will be spending a fruitless day outside...he pulled another book to his side...Thumbing carefully...

In fact...he mused...These Callos orbs might be just what I need for Amy...

As for Warren Mears...He smiled to himself grimly...Tormentor of my Willow...Murderer of my Buffy, the only "daughter" I will ever have...

That pathetic, loathsome thing is going to be wishing for an easy death by flaying when I've finished with him...

"Excuse me...?" the sole customer at the front of the shop...Damn fool couldn't see the "Closed, Come Again" sign?...

"A moment, miss..." he called... Starting the chant...

Just in time, he realized...As a figure...Or two...? Appeared now at the door...Anne...And presumably, Warren...

He raced on through the spell...

"Hey, Giles..." Anne called, as Warren opened the door...

Arggh...She fell back, mild half-demon face appearing...And tried again, furious...As Warren stepped inside...

The door suddenly jerked from his grasp and slammed shut...Anne pounding on it from outside...

"Giles!!!..." she hollered...

Ummn...The customer stared at the two men...Glaring at each other...

"I'll be..." she nervously moved towards the door...Whoops, shrieking maniac just outside...

"I'm just gonna look at the books here a bit..." she noted...

"Welcome...Mr. Warren Mears, I presume?..." Giles stared...

"Rupert...Giles...?" Warren attempted the pose of a Fearless Leader...A nervous grin...

"I see you took care of my partner pretty easily..." he indicated Anne, now carefully watching as she stood outside, clearly waiting for any chance to enter...Via her partner or perhaps grabbing the next clueless customer...

"But you might as well not try anything with me...I'm magics protected..." he waved a charm...

"Indeed..." Giles eyed him...

Even better...he moved on the murderer of his "daughter"...On him even before Amy, disguised, could whirl from the books she'd been looking through to face him...

"Let him go, Giles!..." she hollered...Waving to reveal herself...

He stared, holding Mears firmly in a vise grip...Warren making feeble efforts to twist free...

"Amy?..."

"Willow's chasing a shadow, I'm afraid, Giles..." she smiled faintly... "Guess I've improved a bit since you guys last saw me..."

"Improved...Is hardly the word I'd use Amy..." Giles stared at her...Tightening his hold on Mears...



She shrugged...And her eyes darkened...

"Don't make me hurt you, Giles...Let him go...Please..."

Anne looked in through a door window...Waiting...

He released Mears...Who staggered over to Amy, gasping...

"I'm sorry, Giles..." Amy shook her head... "I could wish things had turned out differently...But you people all abandoned me when I needed you..."

"Is that a worthy motive for murdering the woman who saved your life...? For helping this..." he eyed the still-gasping Warren...

"We...'re...Not here...To argue...Pal..." Mears choked out, stumbling to a chair... "Just do...Like we ask...Or lil' Dawny joins her sis...In an...alternate lifestyle..."

"I will leave you to William, Mears..." Giles nodded at him... "He deserves to have you to himself...But, Amy...I warn you...You will not leave this place alive if you don't surrender right now and raise the spell you blocked our exorcism with..."

"I'm still up and running Giles...I don't see anything to indicate you've got something to stop me..." she replied...

"Dawn is quite safe for the moment...William is on his way...And Willow will be back as soon as she catches on to your little game, Amy..." Giles took a careful stance...

"And I am not without some "protections" myself..."

Warren looked up at Amy...Who nodded...

"We figured you'd have some personal defense..." she smiled at Giles... "But wherever Dawn is, Anne still has a hold on her..."

"Anne?!..." she called to the door... "Can you feel Dawn?..."

Outside, carefully holding her umbrella while attempting a nonchalant, causal shopper stare in the windows for the few passers-by, Anne gave a brief nod...

"She's at risk so long as Anne has that hold, Giles..." Amy looked at him...An unconscious hand out to the sitting Warren...

"As is your friend, there..." Giles gave a slight wave, Warren darting eyes nervously...Huh?...As his chair upended...

"Stop!!..." she hollered...Eyes black...A wave, and Giles was hurled back...

"You haven't the power on hand, Giles...Don't try it...!" she called as he stumbled to his feet...

"Anyway..." she calmed, watching him as he came back towards them... "What we want is very simple...Let Anne in and you go out..."

"No...To both..." he said quietly... "You've made a serious mistake coming here, girl...You're on my territory now..."

"Get him out of here...! Now!!..." Mears called...

"I can't magics him out...But I can hurt you, Giles..." she frowned... "So tell Anne to come in...And leave while you can...We'll take our chances with Willow when she comes..."

Yeah...Warren nodded... A fair fight...Wiccan and half-vamp to super-Wiccan...

"I can imagine your idea of a "fair fight", Mr. Mears..." Giles moved position a bit, Amy watching...

"And I think I can hold on until Willow returns, thanks for your concern, Amy..."

He waved again and the orbs on his desk suddenly flared up, flaming bright...

"Were these what you were hoping to find here?..." he called pleasantly...

***

"Welcome to Seattle..." the sign proclaimed...Willow staring up from the asphalt road she'd materialized on...Whoa!...She dodged a huge truck zipping up from behind and raced for the safety of the highway median...

"So...Willow..." Amy called from behind, Willow spinning round... "Nice we arrived on the one sunny day, huh...?" And vanished...

***

Neat car...Thought the young man fleeing for dear life as the Spikemobile nearly plowed him down on Main Street...Now five blocks from the Box...

Odd with that painted windshield and all...

***

"An...?" Xander raced over to Anya, prone on the Summers' couch...Her eyelids fluttering as he shook her...Kneeling beside her...

Sleeping Beauty, the image popped into his mind...She mumbled slightly in her sleep...

Well, why not?...He kissed her...No effect, except that she turned slightly and put out a hand...

And suddenly, began singing in a low, mumbley voice... "Mr. Xander Harris...That's the name he carries with pride..."

Lately I'm just Anya...she murmured...

"No...Baby, no..." he patted her... "Never just Anya...Love of my life...If only I were worthy of you..."

Hmmn...? He stared at her...There was one thing that might catch her attention, even subconsciously...

Worth a try...And he was kneeling, after all...He took her hand...

"Ms. Jenkins...?...I know I've been a fool and something of a coward...But I love you more than I can ever say...And if you could find it in your heart..." he began...

She opened her eyes, blinking...Xander?...

"An...Thank God..." he patted her, starting to rise... "We've gotta get..."

"Hey?..." she pulled at him... "Weren't you about to ask me something...?"

He stared back...

"Yeah..." he smiled...Kneeling again...

***

Back at the crypt, Clem watched the fitfully sleeping Dawn...Her hand still firmly clutching the stake in her pocket that Anne had made her take...



"Been so long since I let myself care about any mortal, God..." he prayed...Standing over her... "They live such short lives...Like the little butterflies...But I care about this one...And her sister...And my poor friend William..."

I wasn't a bad fellow in life...Never consciously did harm...And I haven't complained 'bout how things worked out for me...But I don't think it would be too much to ask for you to spare this little one...Please...

He gently pulled at her arm, carefully moving to the clenched fist...

"I'm so sorry Dawny...Please forgive me..." he pried at the fist, a slight groan from Dawn as she struggled...

He gave a desperate wrench, a cry from Dawn...The stake came loose...At the cost of at least one broken finger, he realized, staring at her poor hand as she moaned in her sleep...

He felt a slight touch of cold...Like a faint breeze...and turned...To see the little boy who'd choked at the sight of him in his clown suit, so long ago, staring at him...Nodding and smiling as he faded out...

He stared at the spot for a moment and sat down beside the murmuring Dawn...

***

Deathwishes...Part XLV...

Archived at the Buffy Rebecca verse, www.geocities.com/buffyrebecca/Cicelypg.html

PG-13/Borderline R

Disclaimer: All BTVS characters remain the property of Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy, and all other owner/creators of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series...

Summary: S7 tale...William's back, seeking help from his favorite Slayer-girl...Who may shortly need a little help herself...

Another Cicelyverse tale...

Written partly pre-Lessons, so no major spoilers that I know of but you may want to see episode 7.1 and on first to be sure...

***

Part XLV...

Cold...Willow's first impression...As she materialized on what appeared to be a mountain summit, snow-capped...

Cold...And Whoa!...Slippery...As she found herself sliding down towards a ledge...

"Welcome to Mount Rainier...!" Amy called as Willow slid past...Desperately grabbing for anything solid...

***

Hmmn...Anne stared into the shop as she waited...Having covered her eyes from the blinding flash of the orbs of Callos Giles had just activated...

Things don't look so good for my partners...As Giles came over to them...Clearly having done something to gain the upper hand...He grabbed Warren, forcing an arm back as Amy stood, clearly unable to intervene magically...

Warren and his bright ideas...She watched as Giles "persuaded" the idiot human partners to sit and allow him to begin tying them up...

Lovely...She pondered her options...Try summoning Dawn?...A threat to her life?...Or just turn and make tracks for...?



A squeal of brakes as the Spikemobile pulled up...

She calmly sauntered over and opened the unlocked driver's door... "Hey, honey..." she grinned into the open car as a somewhat unprotected William eyed her from the safety of the dark interior...

She turned serious, seeing the sunlight reflecting in spots into the car... "Be careful, William...Didn't you bring any cover at all?...What the hell were you thinking?..."

"I was thinking of my child and my wife..." he eyed her...A bit ruefully...

Might have been well to wait for ole Clem at that...But in the heat of the moment, foot had hit pedal, pedal, metal...

"Dawn's ok for now...And we sisters three are holdin' up..." she grinned... "But thanks for caring, baby..."

Looks like my guys have got things well in hand in there...she hooked a thumb at the door of the shop...

"Really?..." he replied drily... "A little rude of 'em to leave you out here...Or are you taking the first watch on guard?"

Eh...She waved a hand...Giles put up a good barrier...Amy needs a little time...

"Then should I assume you are not keeping your word to me, Anne?...That I can't count on you?..." he stared at her...

"Time will tell, Will..." Hi...she nodded to a passer-by... "And I don't remember ever spelling any promises of good behavior out in so many words..." she smiled to him...Whirling to grab the passing woman's arm so quickly she had no time to shout...And dragging her more or less out of sight by the open car door...

"Anne?...Let her go!..." The young woman struggled helplessly...As Anne quickly sank her fangs in...

"No!..." she looked up, dropping the girl and racing to the door as Will started out of the car... "No, Will!...I'm not killin' her...Just a little for control..." she shoved at him... "You'll burn, Will!...Stop it!...Stop!..."

"I've had enough, Anne...!" he threw her back...And started to climb out, smoldering...

"No!!..." she screamed, as she leapt on him...

***

Inside the shop, Giles confronted Warren and a now powerless Amy...Bound in the chairs he'd waved them to after using the orbs to drain her...

"This game is over, Mears..." he began...Anne's scream drawing his attention to the scene outside...He raced to the door...

"Giles!!!!..." Anne screamed... "Don't let him burn!!..." her victim, the young woman now trying wanly to help cover both him and her mistress...Anne having lost her umbrella in the conf