Again, many thanks to Baladen for beta-reading
As ever, it all belongs to someone else.
There will be a third crossover, but you'll have to wait and see just what it is.
Spoilers for season 3 of Battlestar Galactica, but going AU very early on.
Almost from the beginning, in fact...
And The Devil Shall Drag You Under
There was a click as the CD moved into place, the reconditioned Wurlitzer jukebox coming to life as the opening bars of the Scorpions power ballad Wind Of Change filled the air. The bar's only occupant made his way back over to the pool table, picking up the discarded cue leaning against its cigarette burn abused side and looked at the worn and chipped balls that lay across the often ripped and repaired green felt. Lining up his shot carefully, he sent the cue-ball spinning across the table, hitting the 8-ball and sending it streaking across the felt until it hit the last remaining red ball, and followed it into the pocket.
"The Pool God lives." He snorted, "I have way too much time on my hands."
"The way it is is the way it is." A new and somewhat unexpected voice came from the balcony that covered the bar area, it's owner slowly making her way down the stairs until she stood in the middle of the dance floor, "Like I said, you need to make the best of the situation. Have a drink..."
"I DON'T WANT ANOTHER FRAKING DRINK!" The man at the pool table snapped back, hurling the cue across the room towards the window. There was a flash as the stick disappeared a split second before it would have hit the glass, and then reappeared back in the rack on the wall.
"See?" He asked, his anger rising, "None of this is real; it's all in my head, even you. How do I know that I haven't just snapped, and the last two years is nothing but some kind of delusion I'm having while sitting lotus style in my very own padded cell?"
The woman walked up to him and slapped him hard across the face; the loud smack of flesh hitting flesh momentarily drowning out the jukebox. "Alexander Lavelle Harris, you will stop acting like a spoiled brat and start acting your age right now!"
"You know, you would never have done that when you were alive." Xander raised one hand to tentatively touch his now aching jaw.
"Death has a way of changing people." Tara cocked her head to the side, "All the pink cotton-wool that clouds our perceptions is ripped away and we see the universe for how it really is." She closed her eyes and shook her head, "I'm sorry; I shouldn't have hit you. But we went to a lot of trouble to set this all up to keep you safe. We couldn't move you physically; the other side is paying too much attention to you right now, but we could take your mind and put it somewhere safe. I assure you your body is perfectly safe and secure."
"My body is on a Cylon controlled planet in some Gods-forsaken corner of the universe." Xander leaned back against the pool table, crossing his arms, "I still don't get why I was sent out here in the first place? Why me? If Sharon's baby was so important, why send me?"
"Because the opposition keeps underestimating you, and we needed that." Tara moved until she was standing next to him, "You're a good man, Xander, and we need that quality. As many Slayers and Wizards and Witches as there are, in the end all those ancient wars against the demon armies were fought by ordinary men and women a lot like you. What makes you important is that you're willing to stand up and fight against the darkness knowing full well just what it is: it doesn't take much to be brave when you're ignorant."
"Can you at least tell me if the others are okay?" Xander asked, "I've tried not to think about them, given how things were always going a little crazy back home, but I need to know that they're okay."
"Time and space are kind of relative, and don't seem so important when you've moved on to a higher plane of existence." Tara frowned, "All I can tell you is that they will never forget you, and will never give up the fight."
"They're dead, aren't they?" It was more a statement of fact than question, "Or not born yet, depending on which way you pulled me thought time."
"As I said, it's all relative." His friend shrugged, "They are alive in your heart, and that's the important bit. The rules prohibit me from telling you anything else."
"Rules are made to be broken?" Xander asked hopefully, then lowered his head and kicked at the floor, "You could have at least hooked me up with a TV and the next season of Lost on DVD..."
The Centurions stood in line, weapons at the ready, facing the double line of condemned prisoners. Galen Tyrol could only look on as Cally ran towards him, away from the firing squad but towards the guns of the resistance fire team, directly into their line of fire. He knew that every second he hesitated from giving the order to open fire increased the chances that the Brother Cavil commanding the mixed contingent of Centurions and New Caprica Police would give the order to begin the mass execution. An inner voice told him that he couldn't risk the lives of the other prisoners to save just one, even if it was his wife.
"Give me ten seconds," He passed his rifle to another resistance fighter, "then open fire..."
Not even waiting for confirmation of the order, he scrambled over the low rise his team were hiding behind and started down the low rise towards Cally, counting down the seconds in his head. His lungs ached with the effort, and his heart beat so loud in his ears it was almost deafening, but as hard as he ran, the distance between them seemed to grow only wider and wider. Some unseen rock caught his foot and he stumbled, managing to recover in time to stop from falling, but he knew instantly that he'd never make it in time. He closed his eyes, not wanting to see the moment the resistance opened up, cutting down the Cylons and Cally with equal savagery.
But when the sound of gunfire did come, it was from a new and unexpected direction, and each shot put a neat hole right through the CPU of a Centurion. Not wanting to look a gift horse in the mouth, the resistance fighters shifted their aim to Brother Cavil and the NCP traitors, cutting them down. Tyrol scrambled the last few meters to where Cally was laying on the dusty ground, her hands covering her head, and hugged her as tightly as he could.
"Excuse me!" A voice called down from atop a nearby house sized boulder, and the startled Colonials looked up to see a strange young woman dressed in combat fatigues, her shoulder length blond hair pulled back into a basic ponytail, "I just want to confirm that those were robots I just shot, right? Not living people in suits of armor or something like that? It's just that I don't want my dad upset with me again."
"Yes, they were robots." Tyrol regained his composure and looked up, "Who are you, and where did you come from?"
"The name's Jenny," The woman slung a rifle of some unknown design over one shoulder, "and I'm here to help." There was a loud roar as a raider passed over head, banking hard to come back around for a strafing run. Jenny pulled her rifle up to her shoulder and dropped down to one knee as she flicked open the protective caps on the sights. Letting out half a breath, she aimed ahead of the raider and pulled the trigger once: the bullet sliced clean through the fighter's 'head', killing it instantly. It rolled through the air, out of control, before plowing into the ground and exploding.
"Another robot?" She asked hopefully.
"More of a hybrid, or so I've been told." Tyrol stood almost dumbfounded, "Think deadly domesticated animal."
"Oh, that's okay then." Jenny smiled, relieved, "Now I think we should run; I love running."
To Be Continued...