"Faith?" The voice cut through the darkness and made it's way to Faith's ears in waves until the echoes finally died down and Faith let out her breath.
"Shh! This way." Faith pointed her finger in front of her and to the left but the gesture was lost in the darkness, as was her finger, her hand, all of her in fact, and everything else as well. Patsy hadn't known such darkness could exist. It was the kind of darkness that made you think that eyes were trivial, on the face only for ornamental purposes. It was the kind of darkness that made you wonder of you even still existed, because you couldn't see the hair that fell over your face or the hand that brushed it away.
"Which way?" But Faith wasn't sure anymore.
"Hold on," if she stood still and held her breath the whole world was lost, no sight, no feeling, no sound, taste or smell. It was what she wanted, what she needed. Her senses didn't matter, it wasn't the outside world, it was what was already inside of her. There; she'd found her, standing directly behind her, a few feet away. Faith walked backwards for a few steps, reached out, grabbed Patsy's hand and pulled.
"Are you sure Faith? It's awfully dark down here, even vampires wouldn't be able to function with out any light source at all."
"I know what I'm doing. Now be quite before they hear us." The woman didn't respond and Faith knew that she understood. Patsy was a watcher, she had all the information on vampires that she could ever need on the surface but they were in the underworld now and here Faith was boss.
They traveled in silence for a few minutes not knowing how far they had walked, where they had come from or where they were going.
"Do you see that?" The slayer whispered.
"I can't see anything Faith, there's no light."
"That's what I meant. There is light, up ahead. We're there."
The terror struck her then. She was sure her eyes were so wide that they could cut through the darkness that still invaded her sight; like in those cartoons Faith always watched in the mornings.
"Common!" Faith began walking towards the light that only her slayer senses could see.
"Sure, now ya get second thoughts. Little late, just hold this and stay back," Faith pulled the cross out from her waistband. "I'll take care of Ka- carrot-top."
Patsy nodded her head and walked towards the light that was now faintly glimmering at the end of the tunnel.
He was sitting on a throne of stone that had naturally formed in the wall of the cave. He was so much worse than she had ever imagined. Patsy had tried to warn her, to prepare her for this but she hadn't listened, hadn't believed. He was gargantuan, seven feet tall at least. His face was in the permanently bumpy way of being and his hands and feet were cloven. Faith watched as he lifted his arm and pointed his hoof at something. Her gaze followed along his arm to the far wall. Humans, four of them. They were chained up and badly beaten. It was obvious that they had all been bitten already but they were still alive. It was as though he was using them as blood machines, never fully draining them so that they could always make him a meal for another day. To the side of the hostages was a large mud puddle, Three large alligators bathed in the pit.
One of the henchvamps approached the hostages and began to unchain one, a boy about her age.
"Are ya sure about him? He looks a little...sickly. Maybe you want something a little fresher?" Faith stepped out of the shadows into the open area.
"The slayer I presume? No one else would be idiot enough to come down here."
"What can I say? I'm a glutton for punishment. Nice place ya got here. Like the candles," Faith reached out and grabbed a candle off of a large stand, "although I really don't think it's a good idea to be playing with fire when you're so combustible." She took the candle in her left hand and extended her arm. A vampire that had been trying to sneak up on her burst into flame and exploded into dust.
"If it's punishment you crave, that can be arranged." Kakistos glanced around to the four remaining vampires and nodded his head. They surrounded her and slowly closed in.
"Oh no, you've sent your lackeys after me. See me with the quaking," Faith mocked. She kicked her leg out to the right and sent a vampire sailing into the wall of the cavern. She dropped her bag to the ground and quickly bent down to pull out two stakes, one for each hand.
"So, who's first in line to get shish-kabobed?" Faith looked around at her four attackers and singled out a gangly tow-headed vamp to the right of her. "Looks like blondie here wants first go." She approached her first victim and sent her foot crashing into his stomach. In the split second it took him to recover, she circled him so that she was on the other side of him and all four vampires were in her sight. She had to try to take on each opponent one by one but at the same time never forget about the others.
She thrusted her stake at the flaxen vamp but he blocked her with his left arm and punched her in the stomach with his other. Faith flew backwards a couple of feet and landed with a thud on her butt. Her stakes fell from her hands and clattered beside her on the stone floor. Only one was in her reach. She grabbed it, jumped back up and approached her chosen opponent. A couple more blows were exchanged before the other lackeys began to close in on her again. She had to move the fight, to keep them separate.
She kicked her chosen adversary with all her might sending him flying across the room. She charged past the others through the open spot Blondie's departure had allowed. She was on him in a second. He was still lying on his back and without a moment's pause, Faith sunk her stake into his heart. She didn't wait for him to explode before choosing her next opponent, but she could tell by the screechy, explosive sound behind her that he was dust.
Next a vampire with a big nose approached her and mounted an attack. He jammed his fist into Faith's chin and her head went soaring backwards. The pain was excruciating. She was sure that if he had hit her any harder, her head would have fallen off completely. She didn't have time for pain though, so she ignored it and repeated the act on him. Out of the corner of her eye she saw something then, gleaming on the ground. She glanced down and spotted her weapons bag right below her. "So, do you want the stake or what's behind curtain number three?" Big nose growled at her and lunged. She ducked and he went flying right over her head. "The curtain it is." She stood up and in her hand she held a large ax. She swung it and the vampire's head toppled to the ground and burst into dust mingling with the ashes from the coal.
Two down, two to go. She scanned the room for the other henchman, but when she found them, she didn't attack. Her feet were planted solidly on the ground.
"You didn't tell me you'd brought a guest, how very impolite of you." The vampires were standing in front of Kakistos each holding one of the watcher's arms.
"Patsy!" Faith called out. "Get away from her."
"But she looks so damn appetizing." Faith slowly began to move to the left so that Patsy no longer stood directly between her and Kakistos. "I said get away, and it might behoove you to learn that when I give orders I expect them to be followed." She raised the ax she held in her hand and sent it flying at Kakistos head. The weapon impaled itself in the vampire's face directly across his right eye. The vampire screamed in agony, tearing at his visage. He finally stopped screeching and pulled the ax from his eye.
"You'll pay for that, bitch," he stood up and grabbed Patsy from the two remaining henchman. "Let her watch," he shoved Patsy up against the wall and pulled her skirt up above her waist. Patsy screamed in terror as Kakistos penetrated her. Faith stood, unable to move, unable to stop it. She wanted to, she tried to, but her feet wouldn't let her. He was still inside her as Faith watched him sink his teeth into Patsy's neck.
As the two remaining vampires finally moved towards Faith the paralysis left her, but her feet didn't move towards Patsy, instead she stumbled backwards. She fell and crab walked a few steps before standing back up.
She turned towards the exit of the cavern and ran, grabbing a torch as she fled back into the tunnels. She wasn't sure how long she ran before she dropped the torch. Faith heard it splash into a puddle and fizzle out. She ran blindly, not stopping as the darkness consumed her.