The Meeting

Dragonlots aka Dana Bell

"You've all read the report," Barnabas stated, taking a seat at the dark wood table.

"Perhaps the true question," Julian ventured as he sat back, "is whether or not these Wraith, are the danger we perceive them to be."

Angel got up and restlessly paced. Dressed in his usual black he almost blended in with the darkened room. "Vampires are used to be being the top predator here." He stopped and leaned on the table. "They aren't going to like competition."

"For the moment," General Hammond spoke up. He crossed his hands in front of him. "They're confined to the Pegasus galaxy."

"And if they find a way here?" Barnabas glared at the man.

"I'm sure Dr. Weir and the Atlantis team will do everything in their power to prevent that eventuality." He collected the report sitting in the middle of the Triumvirate. The fourth alternate was strangely absent. "Without a ZPM, it will be impossible to establish a wormhole back to Earth, and the Deadalus," he added with a faint smile. "Won't be ready until sometime next year."

"In affect," Angel sat down. "Their group is stranded."

"Yes," Hammond confirmed.

"The vampire community will need to alerted," Julian informed Hammond and the others.

"Is that really necessary?" Hammond inquired.

"We will need to be prepared."

"Then do what you think is best." He closed up his briefcase and rose to leave. "I want to inform you I'll be retiring soon."

Barnabas rose and extended his hand. "You will be missed, General."

"I'd like to make a request. If you could arrange for someone to erase the knowledge of you from my mind, I'd appreciate it."

"I'll see to it personally," Julian assured him.

"Thank you. Good night, gentlemen. I'll see myself out."

They waited until the front door closed before speaking again.

"Another Pandora's box," Angel complained.

"At least this box is in another galaxy and not our own backyard." Barnabas glanced at Julian. "Why do we allow these humans so much freedom?"

"Because our numbers are not as great at those who know about us fear." Julian went to the sideboard and poured a glass of wine for each of them. He mixed in a red liquid and handed each of his guests a goblet. "It seems our fear is unfounded. The Wraith will not find their way here." He took a sip. "At least not without a power source."

"And if they do come?" Angel asked.

Julian smiled. "If the threat looms, I will suggest the Deadalus remove the team from Atlantis and return them to Earth."

"The SGC won't like that," Barnabas reminded him.

"Oh, I think they can be persuaded." He lifted his glass to his guest. "You are after all, Barnabas, a senator on the right committee."

Angel chuckled. "Threaten their funding."

"Always effective."

"I've made certain the Phoenix Foundation has privy to any technology that comes back." Barnabas rose, holding the glass carefully in his hand.

"To the future of humanity," Julian toasted.

The three vampires drained their glasses.

"I need to return to LA," Angel told them. "I've got some demons running loose causing all sorts of problems." He shrugged. "You know how it is."

"Not really," Julian answered.

"That's right, your problems have more to do with the Kindred obeying your various rules." Angel's tone was teasing.

"Good night, Angel," Julia responded. "We will see you when we meet next. I have a car waiting out front to drive you back."

"Thanks." Angel ambled off.

The two gentlemen glanced at each other.

"He's trouble," Barnabas needlessly said.

"But a unique balance." Julian put his glass down. "I have a second car waiting for you. I understand you have a meeting with the president."

"I suspect he wishes me to support him when he runs for office again."

"You're not going to run again."

"No. I want to return to Collinsport. Being in spotlight does not suite me."

Julian laughed without humor. "None of us like it." He extended his hand, which Barnabas shook. "Goodnight, Senator."

The Senator gathered his coat and silver headed cane and also took his leave.

Wearily, Julian sat in his favorite chair by the fireplace. If the Wraith came, they would find stiff competition from the vampires, not to mention all the activated slayers. "You were listening?"

A shadow detached itself and Buffy Summers gave him a wicked smile. "I was." She crossed her arms. "Now, can I go back home to Idaho?"

"Certainly. I also have a car waiting for you." He eyed the young woman. "You will help us, if it is needed?"

"From the sound of it, the Wraith are sort of cross between a vampire and a demon." Buffy nodded. "If we need, yes."

"Thank you."

"You're welcome. And, don't contact me again." Her voice held a warning.

"I promise."

"If it comes to it, you might want to contact the Charmed Ones and Willow. We'll need them."

"Let us hope, it does not come to that."

"Yeah. I'd hate to have the save the world. Again." She slammed the door on her way out.

"A remarkable young woman," Julian commented. He listened to the ticking clock and tried to decide on how best to spend the rest of his evening. No need to worry about something that might or might not happen. Humans seemed to have the tendency to get themselves into trouble. He just hoped this Pandora's box, didn't end up killing them. None of the vampires wanted to have to move to another planet in order to survive. It would be quite annoying.