The gentle breeze of the night air stung her cheek. Buffy Summers rubbed her hands together frantically in a vain bid to conjure heat. Come on, some of us have a home to go to, she thought to herself. Resting on the tombstone, she stared at the fresh grave with impatience. Robert Blackwell was twenty three, a college graduate with a bright future. He had a job offer in New York and was all ready to leave Sunnydale. Until he was murdered. Now the only future he has to look forward to is a sharp wooden one. If he ever rises. God, what is this delay? Desperately she stamped down on the grave. "Wake up, it's cold". Frustrated and freezing, she frantically rubbed her hands together. She tried not to think of the cold, instead fantasizing about warm beaches with big yellow suns. Instead all she could think about was Willow, how she let her borrow her gloves. How she lost them. How Buffy herself must now suffer. It did little to take her mind of her numb fingers. Then a scream. A man's scream, coming from the other side of the graveyard. Stay here Robbie, we'll catch up later. Racing across the graveyard, Buffy directed herself based on the agony she could hear. Praying she wouldn't be too late. Hoping the sprint would warm her up. She was stopped suddenly by the cause of the screaming. A man, burst through the bush in front of her, landing at her feet. His face was covered in lacerations. "Are you ok?", she asked the man. Dazed, the man could barely look at her. His head clearing, he struggled to focus until the image of the slayer became visible. He screamed as he scrambled to his feet. "No wait, I'm here to help, what did this to you?". The answer presented itself when it tore through the hedge. Standing over six feet tall, and dressed like a biker. It's face nothing more than a skull, his head engulfed in a flame. She stood entranced, almost forgetting about the victim. The demon brushed past her, focusing on it's prey. With speed, she pounced on it, spinning it round striking it in the ribs with an elevated knee. The demon buckled slightly as Buffy anticipated the retaliation. Instead the demon turned it's back, advancing on the injured man. "Hey, are we done here", she grabbed the demon with both hands and spun him round. The demon turned quickly and caught her with the back of it's right hand in the head. Hitting the turf hard, she could feel the side of her head was warm and wet. Flipping up, she shook off the cobwebs and looked at her enemy. The demon had stooped over the man, lifting him off the ground as it stood upright. She had to act fast, if anything just to stop the man's screams. Reaching into her coat pocket she produced a weapon. The blade was eight inches, slightly curved, serrated on the one side. She plunged it deep into the demons back, pushing hard with both hands, leaning with all her weight. The demon dropped the man, turning to face Buffy, the blade still in it's back. Without hesitation, Buffy unleashed a flurry of punches into it's front, avoiding the fiery head. The demon grabbed her by the throat and lifted her clear of the ground with one hand. Struggling to break free the demon stared into her eyes with it's own dark, hollow sockets. She looked beyond it to see the man was gone. so far so good, she attempted to joke with herself. It was short lived. With force, she was threw to the ground. She looked up to see the demon remove the knife from it's back. No blood, she noticed. The demon snapped the blade and threw it to the side. "I will only say one thing to you child", it's voice was soft yet inhuman. It cut through Buffy, chilling her more than the night air could have. "Stay out of my way". turning it's back the demon ripped open a storm drain and disappeared. She knew she should go after it. She also knew that she shouldn't. it would be unwise and foolish. A dead slayer was no good to anyone. She needed answers and she needed them now. Looking at her watch, she observed it was almost two. It was late, but he had to be up. He would be soon enough regardless.
Bang. There it was against. A strange sound emanating from somewhere. Bang. What could it be? He thought. Deciding to ignore it, he rolled over in an attempt to get back to sleep. Bang bang bang bang bang bang. Wearily he say up from his bed. Rubbing his eyes he reached for his glassed and his housecoat. Tying it he descended the stairs, his front door banging the whole time. He picked up an Axe hanging form the wall and approached the door. "Who is it?, he called out, the axe poised ready to strike.
"Giles, it's Buffy, open the door it's freezing", came the reply.
Giles opened the door to find his slayer standing with blood on her face. "Good lord Buffy, are you ok?"
"No, it's freezing", was her reply. Maybe not the one Giles was hoping for, still he was glad she didn't appear to badly hurt. He ushered her inside, closing the door and locking it. "What's the axe for?" she asked. "Demons aren't known for their pleasantries before coming to kill you".
"The way you were banging on that door I though the devil himself had come for me. What happened are you sure you're ok?". He motioned for her to sit on the couch, placing himself next to her.
"Yeah I'm fine", just a little dazed. Bleeding stopped so yay".
"Buffy what did this to you?"
"Well that's why I'm here. Giles I've never seen a demon like this before. He was huge, no surprise there. But he was dressed funny".
"What, inappropriate clothes similar to a vampire?"
"You could say that", she paused as if the recollection perplexed her. "Like a biker".
"A biker?", was Giles response. "Did he have a motorcycle?"
"Not that I could see. What the hell was it?"
Giles removed his glasses and rubbed his eyes. "Do you have, umm, anything else, more significant details?"
Buffy stared vacantly before the thought returned to her. "His head was on fire", she blurted out enthusiastically, startling her Watcher. "More like, his skull. There was no skin on his face, or his whole head for that matter".
"You think he was a skeleton under the leathers?"
"Doubtful. Mucho muscles. Very strong. He appeared to be chasing someone, a man".
"Fascinating", Giles interest had peaked, he sat forward, "Was he after the man, or was it a random attack?"
"Oh no, nothing random here. He swatted me out the way and chased after this guy. I hope he never caught him. He appeared pissed".
"Well, if this man is alive I suggest we try finding him, though that will be difficult I assume. As far as the demon is concerned, I suggest we put our heads together tomorrow and do some research".
"And in the meantime?", Buffy was anxious to know.
"In the meantime we get some rest. Whoever this demon is, you said yourself he is very strong. I can't imagine him walking about during the day without attracting attention, which gives us to tomorrow night to preprare".
"Giles I can't just go to bed. There's a demon out there".
"Buffy, there are always demons out there". His tone turned serious as he stared at her intensely. "You can't patrol without rest. Plus you're injured, the best thing it to go home, avoid any trouble on the way and get a good nights sleep".
Buffy got to her feet and shuffle towards the door. "Ok fine", she sighed. "If I see a vampire on the way can I slay it?"
"Only if it's a small one", he replied opening the door, "take care". Closing the door behind him, he exhaled heavily. His brain wouldn't stop racing, frantically searching for pieces of information to collate into something useful. Nothing. If it wasn't in his head, it may be in his books.
"A biker, cool". Xander appeared excited at the concept, ignoring the threat the demon possesses.
"Not cool," retorted Buffy. "This thing is strong. Scary strong". Buffy looked about the college courtyard. The sun shone down without mercy as students raced from class to class, as ever oblivious to what goes on in Sunnydale at dusk. She envied them, sometimes.
"And Giles has no idea as to what it is?", Xander asked, his excitement quashed by Buffy's disapproval.
"None at all", answered Buffy. "Don't get me wrong, I hardly caught him at a good time. But he's on it. And when he finds out what it is. I'm going to kill it".
"Yeah well, your gonna be the dead one you don't move your butt".
Buffy looked at the time, she didn't realise how late she was running. "Gotta go", she got to her feet and fumbled with her backpack. "What are you doing today?"
"Me?", asked Xander rhetorically. "Well, I don't like to brag".
"Go see if Giles needs a hand", Buffy interrupted. "Two heads are better than one right?"
"Yeah but in this case, Giles head is better than two of mine. And there was two of me once remember?".
"How could I forget. I'll see you later, have fun". Buffy jogged off, late for her studies. Her head replayed the previous night's fight, over and over. She needed information and fast. Whoever this demon was, he was way too dangerous to be allowed to roam freely.