Fates Entwined

Dead Man's Switch

"Are you certain about this, young lady?" demanded Agent Flemming. "Because making false statements towards the government is a serious federal crime."

He was the one driving towards Highland High with Daria, Buzzcut, and everybody else in tow.

"I wouldn't lie about this," Daria told him seriously. "I've dealt with this cult before and I have reason to believe Mr. McVicker's life is in real danger."

"The poor man's had a rough time with Beavis and Butt-head all these years," Buzzcut added. "If possible, I'd like to do what I can to help him if he is indeed in danger."

Finally, the ATF van and all the other federal cars stopped in front of Highland High. Everybody got out but Agent Flemming motioned to Daria and her friends to remain behind the van.

"I want all of you civilians to stay behind," Flemming told Daria, Tom, Kevin, Stewart, and Cassandra. "Leave this to us."

Agent Flemming and two other agents went up towards the security guards in front of the school.

"I'm Agent Flemming with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms," the government agent told the two security guards. "I have reason to believe there's a person-of-interest currently within these halls."

oooo

"They're here!" Graham rushed into the principal's office where most of the top Death Apostles were situated. "A bunch of federal agents! What'll we do?!"

Dale Powers and Ibn El-Khatib looked at each other uneasily.

"We have only one shot at this," Dale bit down on his lip nervously.

"If we are unable to complete the ceremony, then our master will not be able to return," El-Khatib clenched his fist.

"Well?" Mr. Candy looked at the two and put his mask back on. "I think we all know what this calls for…"

"Yes, you are correct," El-Khatib regained his bearings. "The time for action is now."

The Middle Eastern man picked up a com-link that connected him to all the security personnel on campus.

"Attention!" El-Khatib ordered. "The ceremony will begin! Do not, I repeat, do not allow anyone into this school! Kill all who attempt to enter!"

oooo

"Did you hear me, son?" Agent Flemming glared at the security guard who looked at him emotionlessly. "Move aside or you will be charged with obstruction of justice!"

Just then, it looked like the security guard was listening to something in some kind of earpiece. At once his expression changed.

The security guards reached for their guns but Flemming and his agents were quicker on the draw, gunning them down on the spot.

From the rooftop, several security guards began raining bullets down on the ATF agents.

"Take cover!" Flemming shouted, running back to the safety of the ATF vans.

Quickly, Buzzcut grabbed both Kevin and Daria next to him and brought them behind the safety of the ATF van.

"Yup, McVicker's here," noted Daria, realizing that if he wasn't, there would be no reason for Highland High's security forces to react so violently.

"I did not anticipate getting into a shootout for this trip," Tom clutched the side of the van nervously.

"I didn't anticipate Stewart hitting puberty," Daria looked at her ex. "And yet here we are."

oooo

"Ugh, where am I?" McVicker got up groggily.

He sat inside a nice padded cell. There was a bed, along with a table.

On that table were a laptop and a handgun.

"W-What's this?!" McVicker stammered.

He walked towards the table, still feeling the drunken effects of the wine he had taken in. As of yet, he had no idea why a gun and a laptop were on the table. Then he took a look around.

There were mega-speakers on all corners of the room. He was also barred from leaving by several metal bars in the cell.

Not knowing what else to do, McVicker opened up the laptop.

Hello Mr. McVicker.

McVicker blinked in confusion at the words that appeared on the screen. Then a new instant message appeared after that.

By now you must be wondering why you are down here, yes?

McVicker sat down and looked carefully at the screen.

There is only one bullet loaded within this gun. The lock on these bars is bulletproof. In your final moments, you will not be leaving this cell. There can only be one means of escape.

The old man looked at the computer in disbelief.

"Uh, huh huh huh!"

Immediately, McVicker looked up. Beavis and Butt-head were being led by several Death Apostles to the cell next to his.

"McVicker's in jail! Huh huh huh!"

"Yeah, what a dumbass!" Beavis agreed. "Heh heh heh!"

"You!" McVicker growled. "What are you doing here?"

The Death Apostles ignored McVicker and took Beavis and Butt-head into the other cell, sitting them down on a table that had to microphones. In front of them was a television screen. One of the cultists turned on the TV.

"This better be good," Butt-head declared.

"Hello class," a young female teacher showed up "Today, I want you teach you about sex education!"

"Uh, huh huh huh huh huh!"

"Heh heh heh heh heh!"

At once, the two began to laugh directly into the microphones. Immediately, their laughter was broadcasted and amplified heavily through the loudspeakers mounted in McVicker's cell.

"Aaaahhh!" McVicker cried. "Turn that crap off!"

"HUH HUH HUH HUH HUH!"

"HEH HEH HEH HEH HEH!"

"For today's class, I'd like teach you how to put a condom over the penis," the sex-ed teacher on the screen said matter-of-factly. "Then I'll show you how exactly the penis goes into the vagina."

The Death Apostles smiled under their hoods as Beavis and Butt-head laughed uncontrollably into the microphone nonstop. In the other cell, McVicker fell off his chair and covered both ears in horror but could not make it stop.

oooo

Outside, a full firefight had erupted between the security forces hired by Ibn El-Khatib and the ATF agents at the scene. Both forces were at a standstill due to all sides having bullet-proof riot shields and roughly the same caliber of firepower.

"I'll need to get inside," Buzzcut told them.

"Take one of the riot shields," Flemming told the gym coach. "We can cover you."

One of the agents handed Buzzcut a riot shield and a gun. Before Buzzcut could cover himself and go out there, Daria grabbed him by the arm. He saw that she had a crossbow in her hands.

"What're you doing?!" demanded Buzzcut.

"I want to go with you," insisted Daria.

"Like hell you are!" Buzzcut objected.

"Look Mr. Buzzcut," Daria told him. "I was the one who lost Beavis and Butt-head. It's my fault and now's the time to own up to it. Besides, I've engaged these cultists before. I know how they operate."

Before Buzzcut could respond, Daria suddenly raised her crossbow and fired. The arrow struck a Death Apostle with a gun who had somehow slipped past the ATF's defenses. He fell to the ground.

Buzzcut then looked at Daria with something resembling a mixture of newfound respect and surprise.

"Just stay behind me," he ordered, raising his riot shield.

Daria did as she was told, staying behind Buzzcut as he advanced, with the riot shield held firmly in front of him. A few security guards fired upon him but Agent Flemming's men quickly shot them down, forcing the other guards to stop focusing on Buzzcut with Daria in tow and back towards the main line of fire.

Soon, Buzzcut and Daria made it to the side of the school.

"I think I have an idea where Mr. McVicker is being held," Buzzcut told Daria as he entered into the school with her. "Down the hall and to your left is the new school basement. I went down there once and saw them building what appeared to be two holding cells."

Daria nodded, getting an ominous feeling that it was there that the third prophecy was meant to take place.

As the two raced down the hall, they were encountered few guards. Fortuitously, all of them were at the front of the school engaging the ATF agents.

"Halt!" a voice rang out.

Daria and Buzzcut stopped where they were.

"Stay where you are," High Priest Moloch stepped out of a classroom with a prisoner.

"Mr. Van Driessen?" Daria was surprised.

"Let go of me!" Van Driessen cried.

The masked owl-man held the hippie teacher hostage with one arm behind his back. The owl-man also had his wrist claws pressed directly against Van Driessen's throat.

"I know this guy," Daria bit down. "He's responsible for everything that's happened."

"Drop the shield," ordered the owl-man.

Buzzcut was hesitant at first. However, at seeing the desperate look in Van Driessen's eyes, he finally decided to comply.

"Good," High Priest Moloch told them. "Now drop your weapon."

Buzzcut put down his gun as told.

"Angra Mainyu will return to this world," the owl-man told them. "And nothing you can do will halt his resurrection!"

"I'm sorry Mr. Van Driessen," Daria said sadly.

"What do you mean?" asked Van Driessen.

"For this!" Daria raised her crossbow and fired immediately.

The arrow soared through the air to the surprise of both Van Driessen and the High Priest of the Death Apostles. Pushing Van Driessen aside, High Priest Moloch deflected the shot with his metal claws.

Quickly, Van Driessen ran towards Daria and Buzzcut.

"Not that I don't appreciate the rescue," Van Driessen told Daria. "But that was playing Russian Roulette with my life!"

"Look Mr. Van Driessen," Daria told him. "I don't like the situation anymore than you do, but we're in a tight spot right now. Besides, McVicker's life is in danger. And so are Beavis and Butt-head's!"

"Wait, what?" Van Driessen looked distressed.

Angrily, High Priest Moloch pushed Van Driessen forward, launching him right in front of Daria. Daria caught Van Driessen and moved him to the side but by that time, the owl-man charged. When he was close enough, Daria realized she wouldn't be able to raise her crossbow in time.

The owl-man raised his arm and slashed at Daria. From the side, however, Coach Buzzcut caught the owl-man's wrist before he could strike down Daria.

"Go!" Buzzcut ordered. "Save McVicker! I'll handle this idiot!"

As Daria ran off, the owl-man kicked Buzzcut in the stomach, sending him reeling back.

"I don't know who you are," Buzzcut told the man in the owl mask. "But you're about to learn that you never stand between a marine and his mission objective!"

Van Driessen backed up against a wall timidly as Buzzcut dodged a slash from the owl-man and punched him in the ribs, making the masked man stumble back.

High Priest Moloch slashed at Buzzcut again who avoided it. This time, however, the owl-man spun around and kicked Buzzcut in the stomach, knocking him back. Buzzcut crashed against the locker but had to move out of the way again as the owl-man cut at him once more, this time slashing his metal claws against the locker.

"You're good, I'll give you that," Buzzcut admitted.

oooo

Daria looked around frantically, trying to find the exact room that led down to the ceremony. Hopefully, she would find Beavis and Butt-head before it was too late for her first high school principal.

Truthfully, she had no idea where the school basement was. And it had been a long time since she'd been back to her old high school.

The tense situation wasn't helping either, especially as the world was on the brink of Armageddon.

She saw the principal's office. While Daria wasn't certain that the principal's office would lead to where McVicker was being held, she still decided it was worth a try. Raising her crossbow, she grabbed the door knob and opened it.

"What the Devil?" Dale Powers looked up after Daria opened the door to take a look inside.

The tall ex-military man stood next to Ibn El-Khatib who was typing something on a computer. Little did Daria know, El-Khatib was the one communicating electronically with McVicker down in his holding cell.

"No, this cannot come to pass!" El-Khatib growled. "Powers, we have come too far to fail our master! Get rid of Morgendorffer! Now!"

Dale Powers raised his handgun and fired a shot at Daria. Fortunately, Daria saw it coming and ran down the hall in the nick of time.

"Show her no mercy!" ordered El-Khatib.

Powers exited the office and saw Daria turning right to another hall. He fired another two shots but Daria luckily managed to avoid those as well.

"Girl's feistier than I gave her credit for," Powers marched down the hall with his handgun in tow.

He made a right turn and saw Daria in the nick of time entering a classroom and closing the door behind her. Smiling, Powers realized that he had Daria trapped like a rat. Calmly, he walked towards the classroom and opened up the door.

At once, he was greeted with the sight of an overturned desk that Daria had flipped over to barricade herself behind.

"Give it up, Daria!" Powers told her, firing a shot at the metal desk that made Daria wince in fear. "You can't stop the resurrection of Angra Mainyu!"

"I can and I will," Daria responded, putting an arrow in her crossbow.

"I've served in the army before," Powers grinned. "It was during my service time in the Middle East that I encountered a vision of Angra Mainyu who saved me from hostile enemies and certain doom during a surprise attack. After that, I became acquainted with his followers, like Mr. El-Khatib back there. Decided to dedicate my life to the one true god!"

"Is there a point to this?" demanded Daria, realizing then and there that she was no match for a trained soldier.

"Point is, Angra Mainyu can make your wildest dreams come true!" Powers exclaimed. "In the world that is to come, you'll experience paradise on Earth! Anything you want, he'll make it happen!"

"Thanks, but I'm good," Daria responded bluntly, remembering how the man she loved had been sacrificed for the demon god.

"Have it your way!" Powers raised his gun, firing another shot simply to intimidate Daria.

The shot ricocheted off the desk as Daria held her crossbow close to her, wondering just how she'd get out of the situation this time.

Powers pulled down on the trigger for one last intimidation shot before going in for the kill.

Suddenly, he realized he had no more bullets in his gun. Previously, he had lent some bullets in his gun to a security guard for their shootout with the ATF agents. And the magazine he had put in his gun had been one that wasn't filled to full capacity.

"Damn it!" Powers growled, reaching inside his pocket to get a spare bullet magazine.

He pressed down on a little button on the side of his gun with his thumbs, loosening the magazine inside as he got another magazine in his own pocket.

As Daria heard the sound of the empty magazine dropping to the floor, she realized that it was now or never. She quickly spun up, firing an arrow at the former soldier.

Just as Powers attached the new magazine to his gun, Daria's arrow struck true and pierced his skull. Blood flowed down the head of Dale Powers as he dropped to both knees, almost incredulous that he had been taken down by girl with no military training or skill.

Even Daria was a little awed that she had managed to accomplish a headshot. However, there wasn't much time to stick around and admire her handiwork. She still had McVicker to save.

As Dale Powers finally fell down to the floor dead, Daria ran out of the room with her crossbow.

"I warned that fool not to underestimate you," a voice with a Middle Eastern accent announced.

Daria was now face to face with Ibn El-Khatib who stood a few feet away from her next to a door, gripping tightly to a scimitar. He made a gesture to the door next to him.

"To get to McVicker, you can go through here," El-Khatib informed her. "But you, Miss Morgendorffer, will have to go through me."

Without hesitation, Daria pointed her crossbow at El-Khatib and fired. To Daria's surprise, El-Khatib swung his sword across the air and sliced her arrow in half easily.

"This is not good," Daria took a step back, realizing that she was out of her league yet again.

El-Khatib took out another scimitar and this time, tossed the blade to Daria.

"I will give you a sporting chance," El-Khatib told her. "Defeat me and you may pass to save your former principal."

"What are you doing to him down there?" demanded Daria as she gripped the sword tightly, putting down her crossbow at the same time.

"As you no doubt already know, for the third and final prophecy to come true, two fools must drive a King's son to madness and death," El-Khatib smiled. "Mr. McVicker is merely the dead man's switch to bringing back our master."

"Clever how the prophecy's worded," Daria remarked. "I wasted all this time thinking the King's son had royal blood. Turns out the wording completely threw me off."

"You're a smart girl," El-Khatib said as a compliment. "I figured you would figure it out eventually."

With that, El-Khatib swung his sword at Daria. Daria raised the sword just in time but the clash of steel forced her back. She looked at her opponent nervously. There was no way she would be able to match or defeat him at his own game of swordplay. Still, she had no other choice right now.

Gripping her sword again, Daria charged at El-Khatib, taking a swing at him. Ibn El-Khatib quickly step-sided her and as soon as Daria had spun around again, he drove his foot into her stomach, knocking her to the floor.

"Get up," the Middle Eastern man grinned, giving her yet another go.

Daria held her stomach painfully and got up. She realized what the man before her offered was not so much chivalry or fair play… but rather something akin to a cat playing with its prey before the final kill.

She attacked again, swinging wildly, as she had no formal training in fencing. Each and every time, El-Khatib blocked the attack with his own scimitar.

Daria swung at him from the side but El-Khatib caught her by the wrist with his free hand. He pulled her forward and caught her with a sweep kick, causing Daria to trip over and crash to the floor.

oooo

High Priest Moloch slashed Buzzcut with his metal claws across the side, drawing blood.

"Agh!" Buzzcut fell back but caught himself on a desk.

The owl-man swooped in for the kill but fortunately, Buzzcut was able to grab him by both wrists as he tried to slash at Buzzcut again. This time, Buzzcut slammed his forehead right into the owl-man's face.

"Agh!" the man in the owl mask cried out, falling back.

As Mr. Candy got up, he realized that his mask was cracked from the blow. Not only that, Buzzcut had also snatched away his metal claws at the same time he struck him.

High Priest Moloch got up again but this time, Buzzcut struck him in the face once more with a powerful sidekick, this time smashing the mask to bits and knocking the High Priest down.

Buzzcut walked over to him and picked up the downed enemy.

"Wait, I recognize you!" Buzzcut slammed Mr. Candy against a wall.

"Really Jarhead?" Mr. Candy smiled as blood flowed down his lips. "With your double digit IQ, I'm surprised you have such a long memory!"

"This… this was the man who taught in both our classes," Van Driessen came up next to Buzzcut. "Just what's going on here?!"

"Well, Mr. Candyass," Buzzcut swung the man around and put him in handcuffs. "You put up a better fight than the last time, but your ass is still going to prison for attempted murder!"

"Better up the charges," Mr. Candy replied defiantly. "That is, if you still have a legal system after all this is over!"

Soon, a bunch of ATF agents entered the room with Agent Flemming.

"It took us a while but all the school's guards have been neutralized," Flemming told Buzzcut.

"I believe we have the ringleader here," Buzzcut grabbed Mr. Candy by the scruff of the neck.

"Good work, Mr. Buzzcut," Flemming had two agents apprehend the former candy salesman.

"It's not over yet, Agent Flemming," Buzzcut informed him.

oooo

"Aaahhh!" Daria screamed.

Ibn El-Khatib slashed her across the side lightly, drawing blood. Daria fell down, clutching her side and dropping the weapon she had.

"It is over, Daria," El-Khatib smiled. "You cannot hope to defeat a master of swordsmanship."

As Daria got up and picked up her weapon, El-Khatib slashed at her once more, knocking the sword out of her hand with just the right amount of force.

"Well, fencing against an amateur was entertaining for a while," El-Khatib admitted. "Now, however, it is time for me to end this."

"Freeze, scumbag!"

El-Khatib turned around before he could finish Daria.

Behind him were Agent Flemming, Coach Buzzcut, and the rest of the ATF agents all pointing their guns at him.

"You are too late," El-Khatib informed his new guests. "None of you will be able to stop what is to come!"

"Oh no?" Buzzcut gestured.

Two agents came out from behind Buzzcut with Mr. Candy as a hostage.

"This is bigger than any of us," El-Khatib said, completely unfazed. "Angra Mainyu's resurrection will not be halted on behalf of any of us, not even our High Priest!"

"Put your hands in the air," Agent Flemming warned him.

"Are you so certain you want me to do that?" asked El-Khatib, doing as he was told.

At once, Flemming realized he made a mistake. In El-Khatib's hand he held a remote detonator with a bright red button.

"I have wired explosives all across the schools in the air ventilation," El-Khatib informed the ATF agents. "With one press of this button, I will be able to bring the entire school down upon us without any of you interfering with the master's resurrection!"

"Put down the detonator," Flemming told him.

"I suggest you back away," El-Khatib warned. "And no sudden moves."

Before any of the ATF agents could react, Daria had picked up her fallen sword from behind El-Khatib and stabbed her opponent from behind, piercing his heart. At once, El-Khatib's eyes widened in shock and pain, falling to both knees.

Quickly, Daria wrestled the detonator out of his hand before he had a chance to press down on it.

"Well played, Daria," Ibn El-Khatib complimented genuinely as blood flowed down his mouth. "Well played indeed…"

Soon, El-Khatib fell to his side as blood flowed both from his mouth and from where the sword had pierced him. Before long, he moved no more.

"Good job," Agent Flemming told Daria. "That was a close one."

"Now that that's out of the way, where is Mr. McVicker?" asked Buzzcut.

"He told me McVicker was down here," Daria gestured towards the door that led to the basement that El-Khatib had previously pointed out.

oooo

"HUH HUH HUH HUH!"

"HEH HEH HEH HEH!"

"Make it stop… make it stop," McVicker pleaded, trying to cover his ears.

In the other cell, the duo were watching a video on sex education, filled to the trim with the kind of innuendo and terminology that would make them crack up. Worse yet, they didn't know that McVicker was on the other side, having to listen to their maniacal laughter with the volume maxed out.

"Uhhh… why me?!" demanded McVicker, rolling over on his side.

In all the years he had stayed in Highland High with Beavis and Butt-head as students, his life had been nothing but one miserable experience after another. His hair had receded. He became an alcoholic. And he even had to resort to popping pills because of how miserable the duo had made him.

And in all this time, neither of the two seemed to feel any remorse for ruining his life to the degree that they had. It was all just a big joke to them.

"HEH HEH HEH HEH HEH!"

"HUH HUH HUH HUH HUH!"

The loudspeakers above had not stopped even after all this time had elapsed.

"Get me out of here!" McVicker screamed, running towards the bars and grabbing them. "Let me out!"

Nobody listened to him. He was on his own now. It was like he was reliving that mental hospital experience all over again. There was no stop to the Beavis and Butt-head train in sight.

Finally, McVicker's attention turned towards the gun that sat on the table. He recalled the one message he had received through the laptop.

There can only be one means of escape.

At that moment, McVicker knew.

Crawling weakly towards the table, McVicker grabbed the gun as the maniacal unceasing laughter of Beavis and Butt-head continued on the loudspeakers.

"HEH HEH HEH HEH HEH!"

"UH, HUH HUH HUH HUH HUH!"

"Uhhhh… goodbye cruel world!" McVicker pressed the gun against the side of his head.

oooo

Just as Daria and the others entered into the school basement, they heard the sound of a gun firing.

"Oh no," Daria said, getting a bad feeling in her stomach.

"I see two cells," Buzzcut pointed out.

From the open cell, a few Death Apostles emerged and attacked but they were gunned down on the spot by the ATF agents.

Cautiously, Daria walked over to the closest cell that was closed off by metal bars. To her utter shock, she saw her former principal McVicker on the floor. Blood poured out of his body as he lay there still. In his hand was a gun, which he no doubt used on himself. She also noticed a few loudspeakers in his room projecting very familiar laughter that she already knew

"Wait, what's this here?" Agent Flemming noticed a coffin in the school basement.

"Oh, the fun is just about to begin," Mr. Candy smiled as two ATF agents held him firmly.

"Mr. Candy?" Daria looked at the man incredulously.

"He turned out to be that High Priest in the owl mask," Buzzcut told her.

"You… you killed all those girls on campus," Daria glared at him. "And you even tried to kill my parents!"

"I plead the fifth," Mr. Candy grinned with an evil smile.

"You'll be pleading for more than that once we put you on trial," Agent Flemming told him.

Daria walked back to where McVicker was and looked at her former principal sadly.

"I'm sorry Mr. McVicker," Daria said softly, realizing she had failed in her goal to stop the third and final prophecy.

As the ATF agents went over to observe the odd coffin in the middle of the room, Daria walked over to the second cell, which was over.

She saw before her Beavis and Butt-head, sitting on their chairs and laughing at a sex education video on the screen.

"Do you know what you've done?" asked Daria.

Suddenly, Beavis and Butt-head noticed she was there and stopped their laughter.

"Hey Butt-head, what's Diarrhea doing here?" asked Beavis.

"Uh… she probably came over to kill the mood, huh huh huh!"

"Take a look," Daria gestured towards the cell on the other side.

Beavis and Butt-head got up, walking towards the other cell to observe their own handiwork.

"Uh, is that McVicker?" Butt-head asked almost too casually.

"Whoa!" Beavis exclaimed. "McDicker shot himself! Heh heh heh heh heh!"

"That's cool!" Butt-head laughed. "Huh huh huh!"

The two of them continued to laugh, not having a care in the world and not even caring in the least that it was their laughter, amplified through the loudspeakers, that drove McVicker to his suicide.

"Do you know what you've done?" Daria said slowly, but angrily.

"Uh, no," Butt-head replied honestly. "Huh huh huh!"

Without warning, Daria grabbed Butt-head by the collar and slammed him against the wall.

"Do you know what you've done?!" Daria practically screamed into Butt-head's face.

"Uhhh!" Butt-head cried out in surprise, not expecting this level of anger from Daria.

"I should put an arrow through your heart and put an end to your miserable life!" Daria snarled angrily.

"Yeah!" Beavis encouraged her. "Kick his ass! Kick his ass!"

"Miss Morgendorffer…"

Buzzcut grabbed Daria by the wrist gently but still firmly.

"I'm sorry about what happened to Mr. McVicker too," Buzzcut told her. "But taking it out on these idiots isn't going to change anything…"

Finally, Daria realized just how emotional and unhinged she had gotten, especially since the normally angry Buzzcut was now the voice of reason. She let go of Butt-head and stumbled back, shaking her head.

All this time she had tried to prevent the three prophecies from coming true and she hadn't been able to stop a single one of them.

"What the hell?!" Agent Flemming cried out.

Daria looked up. The tomb that Flemming and his ATF agents stood near began to overflow with blood. All the agents stepped back as red blood began to drip to the floor.

The lid to the coffin floated into the air as the flow of blood finally stopped. Daria walked over cautiously to see what was inside.

"How can this be?!" Daria wondered aloud.

In the tomb was the body of Ted. He lay there in dark robes as his face appeared to be at peace in death.

"There's a fun part about the prophecy I never told you about," Mr. Candy told her.

At once, Ted's eyes opened up with a demonic glare.

"Our master would come back to this world with the body of the hero who would sacrifice himself," Mr. Candy grinned.

"Hahahahaha!" Ted laughed malevolently.

"Ted?" Daria was taken aback.

"Daria Morgendorffer, so good of you to join us," Ted said to her with glowing demonic eyes.

Ted's body floated out of the coffin and landed on his two feet. He held in his hands a ceremonial dagger.

"Angra Mainyu has been reborn!" Mr. Candy declared happily.

"The man you loved is no more," the demonic entity inhabiting Ted's body said to Daria plainly. "There is only the Destructive Spirit!"

"Open fire, men!" ordered Agent Flemming.

All the agents in the room raised their guns. However, the Destructive Spirit disappeared. In a flash, the Destructive Spirit appeared next to Daria. At that moment, all the ATF agents fell to the floor with their throats slit.

"Whoa, he killed all those dudes!" Beavis exclaimed. "Cool!"

"Uh, huh huh huh!" Butt-head's eyes widened.

"You've made all of this possible, Daria," Angra Mainyu grinned at Daria through Ted's face. "You and those two idiots."

Daria was speechless.

"Move, Morgendorffer!" Buzzcut shouted, attempting to tackle the demon god from behind.

Before Buzzcut could reach him, however, Angra Mainyu reached out with Ted's hand and grabbed the PE coach by the throat, overpowering him easily despite the slim frame that Ted had compared to Buzzcut's more muscular body.

"Put him down!" Daria finally shouted, firing an arrow at Ted's body.

The arrow struck the arm that held Buzzcut. Angra Mainyu let Buzzcut go as the PE coach fell down panting and gasping for air.

"You shouldn't hurt the ones you love, Daria," Angra Mainyu taunted.

"Ted's gone," Daria said to the Destructive Spirit. "You're nothing but a corrupted husk."

Without warning, Angra Mainyu was struck with a hail of bullets, knocking him to the floor.

"Grab Buzzcut and get out of here!" Agent Flemming ordered Daria while holding a machine gun in his arms. "I'll hold him off!"

Daria did not need to be told twice. She helped Buzzcut up and the two of them went up the stairs in full retreat.

"Come on, you two!" Daria shouted at Beavis and Butt-head, who decided it would be a better idea to follow her than stay.

"Agent Flemming," Angra Mainyu got up again despite the hail of bullets he took. "You truly have the heart of a hero."

Moving rapidly, Angra Mainyu thrust Ted's hand right through the chest of Flemming, ripping his heart out. As Flemming fell to the floor, Angra Mainyu took the chance to examine his still-pulsating heart.

"Though, I'd tell you to cut back on the cigarette smoking," Ted's corrupted face grimaced. "Oh well, egg's already out of the basket!"

oooo

Outside, Daria saw Kevin, Tom, Stewart, Cassandra, and Van Driessen waiting behind the vans with only a small number of ATF agents left.

"Daria, what's going on?" asked Tom.

"I… I failed," Daria responded hopelessly.

At that moment, Angra Mainyu burst through the school in Ted's body. On his back were two bat-like wings that carried him into the air. Meanwhile, Mr. Candy walked out of the school wearing an evil smile.

"Let the new era begin!" Angra Mainyu declared, raising his arms to the sky.

Storm clouds gathered above as the skies darkened. Everybody looked up to the skies. Rather than any anticipated rain or hail, ball of fires soared down.

"Take cover!" yelled Buzzcut, grabbing Van Driessen.

The PE coach got himself and his colleague out of the way as a fireball struck the sidewalk where they stood. Soon, there was panic as fire rained from the skies, striking down indiscriminately at anything… building, people, cars, and roads alike.

"No," Daria whispered, still in disbelief that all of this was happening.

"Daria, get out of the way!" Tom cried.

Quickly, Tom tackled Daria, causing both of them to fall to the grass as a massive fireball struck the ground where Daria stood previously. As Daria fell, she hit her head on a rock

"Daria, are you okay?!" Tom cried out, realizing he had accidentally gotten her hurt in the process of saving her at the same time.

Daria said nothing. She looked up into the sky in throbbing pain as Ted's body, now possessed by a demonic entity, flew off while fire continued to rain down from the heavens.

Before long, she went unconscious from the head trauma.