Chapter Six

“What are you talking about, Spike? What are the exact words?” Giles said, stepping closer to the blonde vampire.

“You know, the sods who write these prophecies have really got to work on their rhyming. I wrote better poetry than this in my day,” Spike quipped.

“Read it, Spike,” Giles said, his voice dripping with barely checked rage.

Spike rolled his eyes and began to read slowly, translating the words as he went.

“When mankind’s Chosen is reborn,

When the mystical Key opens the door,

When the fallen Slayer is Called Twice,

When the Powers’ Champion pays the price,

The Witch will find the Book of Spells

To release the souls from their cells.

All would bind, they would be one

Unless the spell should come undone.

If the Witch does not succeed,

The world will shatter, it will bleed.

If proper words pass Evil’s lips,

The world will end in short Apocalypse.

If the Witch should speak them first,

Then a baby child from the Vessel, nursed,

Will rid the world of each evil being

So, world safe, allows our heroes’ freeing.”

Giles thought for a moment. “And that’s everything it says?”

“Every poofy word.”

“Write it out. I want to be able to look back at it.”

“What are you going to tell them?” Spike asked, jerking a thumb toward the door.

“What I have to. And you’ll not say another word.”

“You’d keep it from them?”

“I can’t have Willow doubting herself. If the fate of the world rests on her shoulders, she needs to have all the confidence she can.”

“So she’s not to know the parts about the apocalypse, and the shattering and bleeding parts of our gruesome deaths, then?”

“Not in the detail given in the prophecy.”

“Right then.”


“So basically, we have to find this book, and Willow has to cast a spell?” Buffy asked, trying to make sure she understood the prophecy.

“From what I understand, Willow must cast a binding spell, to bind the souls of the Chosen, the Key, the Twice Called, and the Champion. Then someone called the Vessel will bear a child who will rid earth of all demons,” Giles replied.

“So Willow will bind Buffy’s, Dawn’s, Faith’s, and Angel’s souls? And then this baby will kill all the demons?” Anya summarized.

“And…our work will be done,” Buffy said, slightly awed.

“Buffy was reborn…brought back from the dead. Dawn was used to open the portal between worlds. And Faith was called a second time. But what was Angel’s price?” Cordelia asked.

“My time in Hell,” Angel replied quietly.

“You know, I know very little of Sunnydale’s history. Y’all need to fill me in some time,” Gunn admonished from the chair he was sprawled gracelessly across.

“There will be time for that later,” Wesley told him. “For now, we need to work on finding this book of spells.”

“Right. I guess we’re back to research?” Buffy said, a sad tone in her voice.

“No, Buffy. I think none of you will be any help until you’ve rested. And neither will I. I suggest we all get some rest,” Giles said.

“Great,” Buffy replied, a smile on her face. She turned to Angel, Wesley, Cordelia, Gunn, Faith, and Spike. “You guys can stay at our house. There’s plenty of…floor.”

“Thanks. Angel and Spike can take the sewers, because I am NOT taking that trip in Gucci heels,” Cordelia said. A small smile crept across Buffy’s face. Same old Cordelia.

Angel shot a grudging look at Spike, then looked at Buffy, his eyes softening immediately. “We’ll meet you back at your house.”

“Okay,” she replied, and stood on her tip-toes to kiss him softly. Dawn made mock-gagging motions behind them, while the rest of the group looked on happily. Then Buffy turned and led the way outside.

Soon, only Giles, Willow, Tara, Anya and Xander remained. “Will?” Xander asked, taking a step closer to her. “You’ve been strangely quiet. Normally, you’d be babbling enough to give yourself a hernia.”

“Sorry. I’m thinking.”

“W-well, this is a big deal,” Tara said, wrapping an arm around her girlfriend’s waist.

“The fate of the world kinda rests on your shoulders,” Anya added helpfully. Willow blanched visibly.

“Relax, Willow. We can’t be sure of anything until we know more,” Giles said, glaring at Anya. Willow thought there was something odd in his tone, then decided that it was probably just her imagination.

“Let’s get home. Get some sleep,” Tara said, leading Willow out of the store.


“I heard you and Giles,” Angel said, not slowing his pace in the dank sewer.

“Thought you might. Vampire hearing and all that,” Spike replied. “Gonna tell Red?”

“No. Giles is right. We can’t scare Willow too much. She needs to be confident. I just wanted you to know that I know what the prophecy really says.”

“Right then. Thanks for the info.”

“And Spike?” Angel added after a moment.

“Yeah?” Spike said, pushing annoyance into his tone.

“Try to be nicer to Faith.” Angel didn’t slow his step, but when Spike stopped in his tracks, sputtering and staring at Angel’s back dumbfoundedly, an amused half-smile graced Angel’s mouth.