A benign, yet ambitious wind surged through the trees. The air smelled sweet and cool. A storm is coming; a hurricane; a wet earthquake; a flying tidal wave. There are now blood on the leaves and the wet stench of death.

Chapter 34

Blood on the Leaves

Buffy and Gunn's House

A tear formed in Buffy's right eye as she watched Gunn and Dawn finish putting together the baby crib. Faith had found it for them a few days ago on one of their supply runs. It felt wonderful to finally have a husband, a house, and a true family. It was just weird finally finding it during the zombie apocalypse.

"God, we're finally done." Dawn exclaimed as she wiped at her forehead.

"It took like twenty minutes." Gunn replied with a roll of his eyes.

"Well that's a long time to me." Dawn told him as she crossed her hands over her chest, before looking down at her watch. "It's time for me to go to work. See you later bro."

"Bro?" Gunn asked with a raised eyebrow.

"Well you are my big brother now." Dawn replied with a smile as she walked towards the door, before having a thought. "Hey, did you two think of any names for the babies yet?"

"No, now go to work." Buffy said as she shoo'ed Dawn out of the room. As she turned around, she saw her husband still standing by the crib looking dazed. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing... it's just... it feels good having a little sister again." Gunn told her with a sad smile.

"I couldn't imagine my life without Dawn." Buffy replied with a smile of her own as she reached up and touched his face. "Even though she bugs the hell out of me... I..." Not wanting to indulge in that thought, she shook her head and looked at the crib, before discussing their children's futures.

Watch Tower

Eddie smiled as he pulled away from kissing Kate. He didn't think he'd ever find love again but here he was kissing a beautiful intelligent woman. A woman that was also turning out to be a good mother figure for his children and if things kept up at this rate, she was going to be his wife.

Out of the blue, Kate cracked a smile and started laughing. "What's up?" Eddie asked with a bemused smile.

"Oh nothing." Kate replied, thinking of long ago when her dad thought that she was a lesbian.

"Hey, so what did you turn up about Wesley?" Eddie asked, interrupting her thoughts. Right now, Fred and the others were watching him "Do you think he did it?"

Before she could answer, her walkie talkie started to crackle to life. All she could hear was her name and the name Caleb, before it filled with nothing but blaring static. The voice she heard was unmistakable though. "Harmony!" Kate barked into her walkie. "Harmony!" not getting an answer she looked to Eddie and saw the cold fear in his eyes. Leaning over the table to give him one final kiss before running out of the room.

Trying to push down the feeling of dread that formed in the pit of his stomach, Eddie turned and look out of the window of the Watch Tower. After a few minutes, he heard the door to the room open.

"Dawn you're early aren't you?" he asked before turning around. Not getting an answer, he turned and saw Lissa giving him a wicked smile. "Ummm... what are you..." Before he could complete his sentence she was on him.

Sending out a sidekick, Lissa watched as it connected with the side of Eddie's head, knocking him out and onto the floor. With a smile, she started to work the controls and opened up the front gate. Taking a small crystal out of her back pocket, she laid it down on a desk and started to do a little magick that counteracted the protection spell that was put in place by Amy to protect the community. Looking out towards the gate, she watched as the sky and the very atmosphere turned dark red and angry. Suddenly a portal opened and monsters of all shapes, colors, and sizes started to come out of it.

"Hey Eddie, I'm sorry I'm la..." those words died in Dawn's mouth as she walked into the room and saw Eddie on the floor and Lissa standing over him with glowing yellow eyes. "What the..." pulling out her glock, Dawn started to fire at Lissa but the demon dodged and wheeved the bullets before finally jumping out of the window. Making sure that Eddie was indeed okay, Dawn looked out of the window and her eyes widened at all of the demons she saw coming out of a portal. With shaky hands she reached for her walkie talkie. "Ri... Riley!"

New Sunnydale Church

It took some time but Kate finally remembered the last location Harmony reported to her from when she was following Caleb earlier. Entering the church, she saw broken glass and several items overturned. Hearing a groan, she looked to the floor and saw Harmony slowly regaining consciousness.

"What the hell happened?" Kate asked as she ran over and helped the ditzy blonde to her feet.

"Father Caleb happened." Harmony replied with a wince as she brought her hand up to her sore head.

"Caleb... I..."

"He's the one that... that killed Betty." Harmony cut her off. "Like you told me before... a criminal always comes back to the scene of the crime. I followed him here and well... he beat me up."

"He beat you up?" Kate asked with wide eyes. "But you're a vam..."

"That guy is a monster." Harmony cut her off. Before she could add on to that, they both heard a huge explosion followed by screaming and gunfire. "What in the world was that?"

"I don't know." Kate replied as she pulled out her gun. "But let's go and find out."

New Sunnydale Gym

Fred, Hope, Andrew, and Wesley sat on the bleachers watching Faith and Kendra sparing as Jesse sat next to them carrying some bottles of water. Passing them out, he too looked at the two women sparing.

"What you thinking about?" Fred asked of Wesley as he stared intently at the women before him.

"About the killer in our community." Wesley answered after a few moments. "After all we've seen out there, I can't believe that someone in here can kill someone else in cold blood."

As he said that Fred and the others gave each other a look because he was a prime suspect. Before anybody could say anything a titanic boom sounded off, nearly taking Faith and Kendra off of their feet. Collecting themselves they didn't even have time to question what just happened as the doors to the room opened and Father Caleb and Hamilton strode in.

"Hey H!" Faith yelled out as she walked over to Hamilton and Caleb. "What the hell just happened out there?"

"The same thing that's going to happen in here." Hamilton replied with a with like smile.

"Chaos." Caleb finished for him as he reared back his fist and punched Faith in the face so hard that she sailed across the room, slammed against a wall and was knocked unconscious. The whole room fell into a stunned silence and it was Kendra who finally snapped out of her stupor and ordered Andrew to take Hope out of the room.

Running the length of the room, she went for a punch to Caleb's head, only for him to side step it and fight back. Pulling out a gun, Jesse shot Hamilton in the chest two times. Looking down at the flattened bullets on his chest, Hamilton smiled before running up the bleachers and grabbing Jesse by the throat and choking him. Trying to help, Fred jumped on Hamilton's back and in one smooth move he threw her off and into Wesley, knocking them both off of the bleachers and sending them spilling out to the floor.

"Now where was I?" Hamilton asked with a smile as he turned back to Jesse. With fear in his eyes, Jesse could do nothing as Hamilton took his hand and then broke his arm.

Hearing the sickening crack of broken bone and the sound of her husband cry out in anguish was enough to make Kendra turn around. "Jesse!" as she shouted out his name, Caleb took advantage and punched her hard in the face, knocking her unconscious.

As he was about to reach down and finish her off, Hamilton stopped him. "We don't have time for this."

"But this little harlot..."

"Is not important now." Hamilton told him. "The Slayer is."

With a snarl, Caleb stood back and watched as Hamilton picked up Faith, before both of them ran out of the room. Through his haze Wesley looked up and saw Cordelia standing over him.

"Wh... why?" Wesley simply asked. "I... I thought that I..."

"Was important?" Cordelia asked. "All I needed you to do was bring the Slayer here and to keep everyone else in one place. Your usefulness to me is over." as Wesley blinked, the First then turned into Buffy. "Be seeing you Wes." and with that she was gone and Wesley joined the others in oblivion.

As Kate and Harmony made it outside they saw Riley and New Sunnydale's army going head to head with what seemed to be dozens of zombies and demons. Pulling up her gun, she started to fire into a crowd of demons that had managed to push through the armies line and was headed their way.

Hearing a growl, she looked back and saw that Harmony had vamped out and had jumped into the fray. Firing until her gun ran dry, she reloaded and her eyebrows went up as she heard a twig snapping, deadly close to her.

Looking up she saw children. Five of them in total. All long since dead and watching her silently. As her eyes roamed their tiny grey skeletal bodies, she assumed that they died of exposure and hunger. A hunger that would now never be quenched as long as they now lived in their undead state.

Their grey and blackened eyes now roamed over her body in return as they still stood there silently. As the cold wind whipped through their hair, Kate could do nothing but cry, knowing that her life was over, as she closed her eyes and thanked God that she at least found love in this life. As the children now registered movement from her warm body, they ran forward and attacked her from all sides with their sharp teeth.

Like a pack of small piranha, blood flew up into the air as Kate was taken off of her feet. With a no and screaming her final scream, the petite woman gave up her fight. Hearing the noise of flesh being ripped into, Harmony took her eyes off of the hordes of zombies around her and saw her friend take her last breath. As blood splattered on the leaves, it gave her extra motivation to fight harder.

Buffy and Gunn swiftly walked outside and bumped into Eddie and Dawn.

"What's going on?" Buffy asked as Dawn struggled to catch her breath. Eddie was leaning on her heavily and she had to half carry him out of the watch tower.

"It's... Lissa." Dawn stammered out. "She's... she's a demon. She opened up some kind of portal and demons... Buffy my God there are so many demons."

"So that's Riley and the others trying to stop them." Gunn figured. "We need to go and help them." Before he could suggest that Buffy should sit this one out, Eddie started to frantically move around.

"Hope!" Eddie suddenly cried out. "I gotta find Hope and Angel."

"You should worry more about yourself." a familiar voice said behind them. Turning, they saw that it was Lissa with a sadistic smirk on her beautiful face. Before Dawn could lift up her gun, Lissa snapped out a powerful side kick, that hit Eddie in the chest and sent him stumbling to the ground and falling on top of Dawn.

As Gunn brought up his ax, he took a powerful swing, intent on cleaving Lissa in two, only for the crafty demon to side step his attack and send a knee to his gut. Tapping into her demonic strength, she put her hands together and popped him in the back, sending him with a thud to the ground.

Seeing that only Buffy was left, Lissa slowly strode up to her. "You have no idea how much I need you." Lissa started as she smiled before looking down to the ground, her long locks covering the expression on her face. "How much I need you to die!" looking up her eyes had now turned yellow.

"You wanna kill me then you better make your time count."

Running forward Lissa sent out a kick that Buffy blocked. As they exchanged a series of punches, Buffy had almost forgotten that she was pregnant. Reaching down to touch her stomach, Lissa took her by surprise and punched her hard, snapping her neck back and knocking her to the ground. Before the demoness could go in for the kill, she got shot in the back. Turning she saw that it was Dawn, that had shot at her from the ground. With a literal growl, she ran off to where Hamilton and Caleb were waiting for her.

"Buffy!?" Dawn called out as Eddie got off of her and she stood to her feet. Running over to her downed form, Dawn saw Gunn standing over her, his mouth agape. Seeing what he was looking at, she saw a large piece of wood sticking out of Buffy's chest and a pool of blood under her.

Riley stared at the army of the dead as he changed the clip out of his gun. He and his crew of men and women were running dangerously low on ammo and they didn't know how much longer they could hold on. As he aimed his gun at his next would be attacker, the sky suddenly turned dark.

Looking up, he saw that it wasn't going to rain, even though he heard crackles of lightning. Suddenly the zombie herd stopped in their tracks as surges of energy started to crackle through their bodies. Feeling someone near him, he looked around and saw Marcie, Gwen, and Amy standing together in the distance the latter two having their hands outstretched.

The human and demon zombies started to burn from the inside and with a snap of her finger, Gwen made them burn up in place and turn into blackened husks. Seeing a few stragglers left, Amy either used her magick to destroy them or Marcie ran forward and stabbed them in the head with her sai's.

Thanking God for their arrival, Riley's smile suddenly turned into a frown as he saw an unreadable look on Amy's face. Reaching out with her telepathic abilities, Amy found many disturbing things, including Kate's death but something else stood out more then that. "Buffy!" Amy cried out, suddenly at a loss for words.

A/N Come on guys please review. That's the only way I'll know if you like the story or not.