Title: Unknown Path
Disclaimer: BtVS and Stargate or NCIS characters do not belong to me, and I claim no rights to these copyrighted materials. I don’t know where the story is going but right now it is a Stargate crossover.
First Chapter Betaed!!!
Thanks a lot!!Chapter one
A Slayer is always alone, even when they are surrounded by friends and family. Their burden is a heavy one, and it can never be shared. Buffy understood that now. She stood on the edge of the sinkhole that was once Sunnydale. It was weird, she had lived through hell in that city, and now it was gone. Buffy felt a sharp pang of nostalgia as she thought of those who had died; her mom, Jenny Calendar, Kendra, the victims she had not been able to save, the enemies that she had slain, and even herself.
Her silent mussing was cut off when Dawn asked the question that was on everyone’s minds, “What are we gonna do now?”
The whisper rang through Buffy’s mind with the intensity of a scream, yet she could not bring herself to answer. Heat was rising through her body, unfurling as if something were awakening within her. Something was changing. She cast a quick glance at Faith, but her sister Slayer showed no signs of feeling the same sensations. With a quick glance at the group around her – best friends and strangers alike- she decided not to say anything. She didn’t know if she could trust them like she had before: blindly.
Buffy turned to Dawn, struggling not to wince when the motion pulled at the still bleeding wound on her stomach, “I don’t know about you, but I need a vacation. I don’t know for how long, but you can come with me if you want… I mean we could use the time to really reconnect.”
Dawn released the breath she had unconsciously been holding and threw herself at Buffy, catching her sister in a tight hug, “Anywhere you want! You choose I don’t care...”
The longest living slayer smiled despite the pain, maybe she would catch a break… finally.
Giles watched the sisters with a tired grin; if there was anyone that Buffy would forgive, it was Dawn.
Unfortunately Dawn was not the only person who had betrayed Buffy. He was her Watcher, yet he had lost his faith in her ability to lead – even as he demanded that she be their general. He realized now that he had been wrong, and it was all he could do to hope that she would forgive him and allow him to be her Watcher again.
Giles bowed his head and approached the girls with a soft smile on his lips.
“…We could go to New York or something…We could even go to Europe! Paris has so many landmarks and monuments! Oh, Buffy it could be so cool!”
Dawn wore an excited grin as she rambled on, but that smile dropped when she saw the look on Buffy’s face, “What’s wrong?”
Buffy smiled sadly at her sister before turning to her “friends”, “If someone has something to say about my plans, say it!”
Giles raised his head and locked eyes with his Slayer – speaking before Xander had the chance to open his mouth -, “I support you one hundred percent , we all need a break. I will be returning to England when you leave, I want to go through the Council’s documents and try to get a hold of their bank accounts. Plus we will need a place for the new slayers, and this will give me the chance to find any trustworthy Watchers that remain. I will take care of everything in that concern.”
“Good idea… And thanks Giles.” Said Buffy, a little surprised.
“Now wait a minute! Giles you can’t be serious! She is running again! She is leaving us to watch the Potentials alone,” Xander turned to Buffy with an angry snarl, “I can’t believe this! If you go, who is going to train them?”
“Xander, we didn’t say it was forever. It is just so we can rest a little. Besides, I would suppose the girls would like to visit their parents sometimes before training,” several Potentials-now-turned-slayers nodded vigorously at Giles suggestion, “And now is not the time to discuss this. Let’s find shelter and food for the time being.”
Xander refused to back down under Giles’ glare, instead he raged on at Buffy, “What about us, huh? I thought we were your friends. I just want to know why you are running again!”
“Xander, right now I am barely standing. You can do whatever you want! There is no more Hellmouth! I can be free at least for a few months, don’t you think? I can’t tell you how sorry I am about Anya, your eye, and the Potentials. If I could exchange my life for theirs…” She choked on the tears that were threatening to spill from her eyes, “I would. I would do anything to change that. I wish my death would bring back the others and I know you blame me for their deaths.”
Protests flew from the group around her, but Buffy continued on with a new found strength, “I know it! And you know it too… God knows I blame myself every day and night. But I can’t… I couldn’t be everywhere. I am sorry to say that we couldn’t have won this war without sacrifices! You had in mind the death of the Potentials; I had in mind the death of every single person of this freaking planet!! Do you know how stressed I was, I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t breathe without the First taunting me every second of the day … or even without having you second guessing my decisions. I didn’t have a choice, I couldn’t do otherwise…”
“We were all having a hard time, Buffy!!! Potentials died in there, and you wanted us to go another time? We are not like you, Buff’, we don’t have superpowers!”
Buffy had heard that nickname so many times before, but never before had she despised it so much. Taking a calming breath she turned to the newly called slayers, “I know it was dangerous. The life of a slayer is always dangerous, “here she turned to Xander,” The difference between you and me, Xander, is that I would never have let anyone of you go in there alone. And it is normal, I am the slayer, we are alone, we work alone. I know Faith understands it very well too.” She saw Faith nod with a sad expression. “We were not meant to have help and these few months helped me understand something too… There are no longer just two of us, and only slayers can help each other in this fight. And I am not saying you never helped but in situations like this…”
Buffy paused and approached the slayers, “Make teams, not necessarily now, but…what I mean to say is: Don’t fight alone, you don’t have to! You are all Slayers. A slayer is alone but another slayer can help carry the burden, don’t ever forget that and don’t fight it. Don’t presume that you can survive alone.” She turned back and walked back to the bus. “Don’t make the mistake Faith and I did. That is all I have to say.”
Dawn raced to catch up with Buffy, while the others simply watched her retreating form with regret. Eventually everyone was loaded into the school bus, but just as they were about to begin the long drive to LA Buffy bolted for the door. She struggled with them for a moment before finally opening them - thankfully without destroying them- and pulled herself to the top of the bus. A swarm of helicopters and several SUVs were racing towards them.
As the vehicles pulled to a sharp stop and the planes landed, Buffy discreetly grabbed the Scythe and passed it to Faith. She then leaped from the roof of the bus and headed to meet the approaching men in black.
Buffy blinked suddenly. “Riley?”
“Hello, Buffy.”End of Chapter