Chapter Eight

“So, what did you find, G-Man?” Xander said as he and Anya strode into the Magic Box together, hand in hand. “Any helpful tidbits?”

“Only that the spell book that, er, Willow needs to use is in a cave somewhere. The books don’t say exactly where, however.”

“D-does it hint?” Willow asked. She and Tara had entered with Xander and Anya, following closely behind.

“It says that the book is in a cave. And that, conveniently, it’s in the old Spanish ruins just South of town. La morada del oscuro, I believe they’re called,” Wesley replied.

“And for those of us who failed miserably in Spanish?” Xander asked, confused.

“Dwelling of the Dark,” Anya piped up cheerily. Willow’s face had blanched when she mentally translated Wesley’s words.

“Oh. That’s not at all pleasant,” She said.

“Don’t fret, Willow. We’ll get the book, and we’ll perform the spell. It will be very uneventful, I imagine,” Wesley said. Giles cast a sideways glance at the other man, wishing he could tell Willow the truth. But he couldn’t.

“Because that’s what happens in Sunnydale. Uneventfulness,” Buffy said, walking into the store. The moon was high in the sky, so Angel, Cordelia, and Gunn accompanied her. Faith strolled in as well, and Spike came shortly after, a scowl on his face. He glared at Faith several times.

“Trouble in paradise?” Xander teased, looking at the former couple.

“They were bickering again,” Angel explained, an amused smirk in their direction.

“Were not, Ponce,” Spike griped. Buffy raised an eyebrow at him. The vampire fell silent.

“So, any news on the search?” Cordelia said, stepping forward.

“We’re going to La morada del oscuro,” Wesley informed her.

“Oscar’s Trash heap?” Buffy said, confused. Angel leaned over and whispered in her ear. “Oh. See? This is why I failed Spanish. So where are these Morad Oscars?”

“It’s a set of Spanish caves south of the town,” Giles informed her, ignoring her abuse of the Spanish language.

“Oh. So we’re going cave-hunting?” Gunn said.

“Yes. But I don’t think all of us need to go,” Wesley said. “Perhaps just Buffy and Angel?”

“I want to go,” Willow piped in.

“Very well, Willow,” Wesley said. “Take Tara, as well. It can’t hurt.”

Angel looked at Giles, then Spike, then spoke up. “Maybe Spike should come, too. Faith, you can patrol without him?”

Faith grinned at him. “Glad to get rid of him,” she said. Spike just glared at her.

Wesley started to protest, but Giles cut him off. Wesley didn’t know the trouble that could come about, and Giles didn’t wish to fill him in. “I think that’s a good idea, Angel. The rest of us can stay here and research.”

“Research what?” Xander asked. “We know where the book is, we know what the prophecy is. What else is there?”

“We’re still not entirely sure what the prophecy means, Xander. We’re gong to continue researching it,” Giles told him. Xander pouted, but didn’t argue. Buff turned and left, with Angel, Willow, Tara, and Spike following her. Faith left a moment later, to patrol. When they were all gone, Wesley turned to Giles.

“Mr. Giles…I’d like to speak to you privately,” Wesley told him, curtly. He strode into the back room, and Giles followed soon after.

“What aren’t you telling us about the prophecy?” Wesley asked as soon as they were alone. Giles stared at him a moment, then reluctantly handed over the paper with the prophecy’s translation. Wesley read it, then looked up at Giles in dismay.


“They’re going after the book,” said the old woman. “Are you going to follow them?”

“Actually, I’m going to intercept them,” the man replied.

“Kellan, I really think you need to be more discreet,” said the woman. “Anonymity will get you what you need.”

“No, strength and power will get what I need. Sitting back and waiting will get me angry. I’m going to get that book, and I’m going to get it now,” the man called Kellan said. “I thought you understood, Saba. I need the book now.”

“What you need is patience. If you steal the book too soon, they could have time to retrieve it before you cast the spell. They could beat you. You must lie low,” Saba pleaded.

“No,” Kellan said, icy malice in his voice. “They will not beat me. And I’m not stealing the book. I’m taking what’s mine.” A cruel smile played on his lips. “It’s mine.”


“Nobody told me there were going to be slimy things in these caves,” Buffy complained. Angel smiled fondly at her.

“It’s dark. Can you lot see all right?” Spike said, taking up the rear. He could see just fine, and he imagined Angel could see too, because both of them WERE vampires, after all.

“Not really,” Tara said.

“Dilucesco,” Willow said, waving her hand. A small ball of light, the strength of an oil lamp, appeared over her open palm, and the girls could see. Angel and Spike flinched at the sudden light, so much like daylight, then exchanged a look.

“Wouldn’t happen to warn us next time you pop a ball of light in your hand?” Spike glared at her.

“Oh, sorry, Spike. It’s not sunlight or anything, because, well, no dust!” Willow looked only slightly sheepish.

“It looks a lot LIKE sunlight,” Angel remarked.

“Yeah. But it’s artificial. I wouldn’t conjure a ball of sunshine when I’m walking around with two vampires. Unless, you know, I didn’t like them.”

“We have light. We’re in gross, slimy caves. All we need now is some giant beastie to leap out at us, and we’re set to go,” Buffy said.

“You’re doing it again!” Willow cried in a stage whisper.

“What?” Buffy said, defensive.

“That thing! Where you practically INVITE some icky monster to come munch on us!”

“I wasn’t…” Suddenly a low growl was heard from their right. Buffy looked at Angel, then Spike. “Don’t suppose that was you guys?” The vampires shook their heads, and Buffy sighed. “Figures.” She pulled out her stake, just as a huge demon jumped out at them, large teeth bared.

The demon was slimy. It was about eight feet tall, with huge, hard muscles, and orange scales. And it oozed slime. It had huge teeth and claws, and didn’t look happy to be woken up.

“That’s just…gross,” Buffy said, staring at it.

“I’ve never seen one of those before,” Angel said. He turned to Spike. “Have you?”

“No bloody idea what it is. But that don’t mean we shouldn’t kill it,” Spike replied, an evil grin spreading across his ridged face. He growled at the creature.

“Um…Spike? I think you’re making him mad,” Tara said, taking a step back.

On cue, the demon stepped forward and roared at the group. They stared at it in shock, and then the battle began.