Chapter 12 End of Innocence
A/N: Sorry for the wait but now just take a deep breath and read. This is a…not what you expect chapter, enjoy.
It was now or never for the group. They had no idea how much longer Spike and Brian had so they grouped together figuring out what they could do. First thing was first half their weapons had to go. Carrying too much will weigh them down so essentials only, crossbows, knives that can be carried on their person, and a stake or two. The other worry besides their friends taking a beating will be how to get Spike out? It's daylight right now and as soon as he gets outside he's done. Angel did a quick scan of the area and found a manhole. He then looked to Doyle and Doyle nodded knowing what he wanted.
Once they had the weapons of choice they began and went to the front of the building. Angel and Isabella went first and Isabella went to open the doors but nothing. Angel took out a thin knife and slid it down the crack of the door and it unlocked it. Angel opened the door first and Isabella rushed in with her crossbow and did a quick scan as Angel followed in. Buffy then went in with her crossbow followed by everyone else. It was a nice place though as they were quiet. Willow held out her hand and began to leave a trail of small light so they can find their way back. Isabella moved swiftly down the hall holding her crossbow checking each corner.
Buffy and Angel were side-by-side looking and the gang split off to cover more ground. While they were searching Glory had Spike on his knees with his hands still bound. Brian was on his knees as well facing Spike. Glory wasn't going to get anything out of Spike or Brian at this point so to send a message to the others she was going have them killed. She was going to start with Spike first easy but painful. All she had to do was open the curtains and Brian could watch his friend die. Glory would collect the ashes for everyone back at the mansion. As for Brian she had a plan for him too. Spike looked up to Brian and they both knew this was the end. They tried to hold out but couldn't. At least Dawn was still safe.
"Good knowing you." Spike said to Brian and he nodded back.
"Likewise," Brian then looked up seeing Glory heading to the window. Brian closed his eyes he couldn't watch this. Downstairs it was time let loose the chaos and everyone was in position and tossed the flash grenades. The minions and the demon guards were caught off guard, Glory heard the commotion and both Brian and Spike looked to one another with a smile. Quickly Spike got up kicking a minion while Brian turned around and Spike took a knife from the minion. He turned around so their backs were against each other and he sliced Brian's ropes. Brian took the knife and cut Spike loose. Spike then took the knife and threw it to Glory as it caught in her side. The two got up and ran out of the room.
Down below Isabella kicked a door down and shot at a few minions but there was no one in here. She retrieved her arrows and kept looking with her parents. The raced down the halls to a flight of stairs and Angel took out another flash grenade and threw up to the stairs up to the next level. Isabella went first and shot at a charging demon and it was down. The three made their way down the hall as Isabella turned a corner but quickly backed up. She didn't need to tell her parents who she saw and they head back down the hall and rounded another corner.
Spike and Brian stayed close together limping and knew if they didn't say to themselves to stay awake they would pass out right now from the pain and being beaten over the head a thousand times. The members of the gang were split taking out the minions and they were vicious creatures. Glory also had demon guards so that made a bigger obstacle.
Angel, Buffy and Isabella made their way down the hall when two demon guards cut them off and they backed up for a moment. Isabella fired first and then backed away as Angel fired, he backed away to reload and then Buffy took aim. Isabella took her knife out and caught a lucky break killing one demon. Angel and Buffy fired at the same time and killed the second one. They advanced collecting the arrows and knife.
Glory searched her home that was now invaded by these people. She hated them already especially the god and slayer and now she had reason to hate them even more. She then looked down at one of her minions, Jynx was dead. That sent rage through her.
"I want them dead! I want that slayer dead! I want her family dead! I want her house burned!" She yelled as she punched the wall.
Buffy and Angel kept back to back as they went down the hall following Isabella. She then rounded the corner ready to fire but two people held up their hands. She let out a sigh of relief and hugged Brian. He grunted in pain as she held him. Spike was about to fall over but Angel grabbed him.
"You look like shit." Angel commented.
"Never better." Spike added and the five were off. Buffy led them as Angel held Spike up and Isabella had Brain. The smoke gave them cover as they headed back down. Then as they headed down one flight of stairs they ran into Doyle and Gunn. Angel handed Spike off to Doyle so once the chance was given they could make it to the sewers. In order to have some cover Gunn would go with. The seven started and Buffy was about ready to pull the trigger of the crossbow.
"Good guys! Good guys!" Xander yelled to her and Buffy lowered her crossbow with that annoying sigh seeing Cordelia, Willow and Giles. Just then an arrow flew passed Buffy's head and she turned around as Glory's minions fired on them. They got behind the wall and Isabella fired back blindly but had to guard Brian.
"Here," Brian took Isabella's crossbow so she was free and she took her sword out.
"Let's go!" Xander yelled knowing they were out numbered at the moment. Doyle held onto Spike as they ran and Brian stayed close to Isabella as she held him up. They ran down another flight of stairs as Angel and Buffy took out some more minions. They were like cockroaches; they came out of nowhere. Just then Brian stopped and Isabella stopped with him.
"Come on," Isabella insisted but Brian stayed there.
"I'll lay down some cover, go I'll be right behind you." Brian said and Isabella looked at him for a moment. "Go!" He then pushed her so she ran. Angel held out his hand taking Isabella's as Brian fired at some minions. Glory stood there looking and the smoke helped them but not enough. Brian ran backwards firing and then got down and kept firing what he had. He looked behind him seeing the gang was just about out. He fired his last set of arrows to warn them off.
Doyle managed to get Spike into the sewers with minimal damaged and they ran together with Gunn behind them. It would take them some time to get to the mansion but for now they were safe. The rest of them ran off together towards the cars and got to them drive out of there as fast as possible. A few minions went after them but they were easy to take care of.
As they piled in Isabella looked around and felt her mom shove her in the car so they can leave. Angel sped off knowing that they were in lots of trouble. As they pulled into the main road back to the mansion Isabella looked behind her seeing Xander driving. But something wasn't right.
"Dad, dad, pull over." Isabella demanded and he looked to her. "Now!"
"We need to get back to the mansion." Angel stated clearly.
"Something's not right, pull over!" She demanded and Buffy looked to Angel from the back seat and he did just that. Xander followed suit and they all got out and Isabella looked to the group and knew it. "Brian where's Brian!"
"We thought he was with you." Willow informed her as they all looked around. Isabella started to panic knowing he was still back there with no one to help.
"He could have gone into the sewers." Cordelia added and everyone nodded.
"Something's not right we need to go back." Isabella was persistent now. Buffy nodded, she knew better than anyone here to trust your gut and she trusted Isabella's.
"We need to get back to the mansion, Glory will want to even this out. Get to the mansion and leave this town." Xander suggested and Cordelia nodded so now there was split.
"Let's go to the mansion and wait for Spike. I'm sure Brian went that way it's safer than the roads." Willow tried to reassure them especially a panicked Isabella. "We need to regroup." It was decided but Isabella looked to her parents pleading to go back. Buffy wanted to but they had to trust that everyone would be back at the mansion. So with that they got into the cars and headed off.
At the mansion everyone was accounted for except Brian, Doyle, Gunn and Spike but if they were in the sewers it would take a little longer especially because Brian and Spike were wounded. Every one of them paced back and forth waiting and then the front door flew opened as a smoking Spike ran in but before he could collapse on the floor Lorne and Angel caught him. Doyle and Gunn came in with Gunn slamming the door shut and locking it. Isabella did a mental check and no Brian.
"Where's Brian?" She demanded and Gunn and Doyle looked around confused.
"He was with you." Gunn answered and Isabella now panicked.
"He's still at Glory's place." Buffy spoke up and she was panicked with her daughter. She knows what it feels like to have someone you love taken and no idea what was going to be done to them.
"Then we go back and get him." Isabella said but to go back after what they did was very dangerous.
"Izzy," Angel stepped in, yes he understood her and what she wanted to do but it was beyond dangerous. Glory was very angry at what just occurred and going back now could only intensify the already tense and dangerous situation.
"We don't leave our people behind." Isabella reminded her father and yes that was one code they had.
"Ok, listen," Buffy knew if these two butt heads with their stubbornness then nothing will get done. "Izzy, your father, myself and Doyle will go. The rest of you guys," She looked to the gang. "Be ready to go like yesterday ready." They all nodded and Doyle quickly kissed Cordelia and left with Isabella and her parents.
Brian sat in a chair tied up still fighting to not pass out. He then heard a clicking noise and looked up. Glory stood before him and without warning she smacked him across the face. Brian kept it together but he had no clue where he was. It looked like a factory.
"I'll let my place air but your friends and your slayer made a big mistake." Glory began. "I'll make you a deal," She then squatted down so she was eye level with Brain. "Tell me about the Key and you live." Brian sat there saying nothing.
"I'll die before I tell you." Was his answer and Glory nodded and got up and walked away.
Angel, Buffy, Isabella and Doyle searched the huge place and the smoke was slowly settling but that's all they saw, smoke and dead demons and minions.
"There's nothing here," Isabella looked around and that was very unsettling. "Where are they?"
"We need to go." Buffy then pulled her daughter along but Isabella didn't budge. "Izzy he's not here."
"Then where is he?" She asked and Buffy could see the fear in Isabella's eyes.
"We'll find but we have to go now." Buffy insisted and they left.
At the mansion everyone waited literally jumping to every sound. Spike was getting patched up as Giles and Wes waited for Angel, Buffy, Doyle and Isabella to return. Dawn was waiting too and then they saw a car coming in and they felt relief. Dawn ran to the car as it parked and Angel and Buffy ran to her hugging her. But Isabella by passed everyone and it meant they didn't find Brian.
Everyone sat at the table in silence. Spike confirmed that Glory knew nothing of the Key but what worried them now was where is she? So far she hasn't come here but that meant nothing. First priority is to find Brian. Hopefully he ran off but where? And if he did run off why wasn't he here yet or on the road that led to here. Isabella got up from the table and headed to the weapons room she would find him by herself if that was the case.
"Izzy we don't even know where to start," Angel got up and followed her.
"It's better than sitting around waiting and doing nothing." Isabella added as she grabbed her sword.
"It's not safe ok, we started something big and it's you," But Angel was cut off.
"He's out there ok I need to find him. Should have never went to the desert." Isabella then headed to the door to leave. Angel went to stop her, yes he wanted to help but they needed a plan and to do it as a group. Isabella walked outside but stopped causing Angel to stop himself from running into her. Down the steps of the porch was a huge wooden box. Everyone in the dining room heard Angel and Isabella talking but it stopped so it made them all get up.
Angel made sure Isabella stayed put as he walked to the wooden box. Buffy came up behind Isabella seeing the box as Angel circled the huge thing seeing a note attached to it. Isabella then walked to the box and reached for the note. She unfolded it and read it out loud.
"Please bury me for best results as I wait to awake when all goes dark." Isabella finished and her heart sank and she reached for the box and began to pry it open. But when she saw what was inside she fell to her knees. Buffy gasped and Angel's eyes widen in disgusted.
"No, no," Isabella reached inside the box looked down to Brian. She reached out and he wasn't warm. She grabbed him and laid him on the ground as everyone watched in horror. Angel looked up and saw Dawn standing there and he raced to her and picked her up to shield her from the sight. Isabella checked for a pulse and began CPR hoping it wasn't to late.
Buffy stood there watching and had no idea what to do as she watched her daughter franticly trying to save her boyfriend.
"Brian! Brian! Come on!" Isabella begged as she continued but Buffy had to stop it and went to her. "No! No!" Buffy pulled her close as everyone stood there not moving, no sounds and barely breathing. Fred started to cry as she hugged Wes and Giles removed his glasses covering his eyes. Doyle and Cordelia hugged one another while Gunn squatted down to the ground taking in deep breaths to calm himself. Lorne took a few steps back and sat on the steps hearing small whimpers from Dawn as Angel held her. Spike from inside the mansion turned around and put his back against the wall and slid down burying his face into his hands. Xander, Anya and Even along with Willow, Tara and Levy all held each other. Isabella remained in her mother's arms sobbing as Brian was dead. Buffy could see he was so pale and two bite marks on his neck with dried blood covering his shoulder. Glory had a vampire kill him.
The sun had set long ago and now everyone was antsy knowing anytime now Brian would wake up but not as himself. They all knew Glory did this on purpose to force them to kill him. Isabella sat outside next to his body waiting. She didn't move, didn't eat just waited. Would she do it? When he comes back would she kill him? Angel went to go talk to her but she told him to back off and so Angel sat on the steps of the mansion waiting. He had no idea what to do for her. Everyone waited outside to see what would happen and to be ready to take Brian out if needed. Dawn was upstairs asleep; she didn't need to see this. Buffy came from the mansion seeing Isabella had yet to move. It was nearing one in the morning and nothing yet.
Buffy squatted next to Angel and placed a hand on his shoulder doing her best to reassure him but right now nothing would assure any of them as they all knew what was going to happen.
"Anything?" Buffy asked and Angel shook his head no. Buffy looked to where her daughter sat waiting for the worse. Everyone sat quietly waiting and it was that sickening feeling you get when you know the absolute worse was coming and there was nothing you could do to prevent it. Spike the whole time was cursing himself; he shouldn't have taken Brian on the hunt. If Isabella needed to be mad it should be at him.
Buffy decided to try and talk to her daughter but the rest of the gang believed if Angel couldn't talk to her about staking Brian now then who could? Buffy walked over to her daughter and slowly sat next to Isabella and waited for a moment.
"Hey," Buffy began but Isabella didn't move. "This isn't your fault ok," She assured her but still Isabella did and said nothing. "I had to do it to once," Buffy explained. "You know the story right?" She asked and Isabella nodded slowly.
"You killed dad." Isabella looked to her mom and she nodded.
"I didn't want to, I loved him so much and I was so close to letting the world end so I didn't have too." Buffy remembered that day so clearly. "I hugged him, I told him that I loved him, kissed him and then…I killed him." Buffy then looked to her daughter. "I did it for the world knowing it save everyone but it destroyed me. I sacrificed the man I loved for the world." Isabella went back to looking at Brian and Buffy got back up. It wasn't advice or consoling it was just something Buffy needed to remind her daughter of. Buffy got up and took her spot next to Angel and they waited.
The hour became later as time passed and it was now close to three in the morning. Isabella sat there waiting looking down at Brian bracing herself not knowing how this will happen. Then she saw it a flinch, the smallest flinch but it was time. What now? Should she stake him? Was now the time he was no longer human? She clutched the stake but did nothing as his body twitched again as he was awakening. She had to bring it to her mind that the Brian she knew, the Brian that was sent to her, that saved her life back in LA at the mall was dead. He died and this person, this creature before was not him. And then his eyes opened. They weren't brown like his true eyes, they were yellow, the eyes of a demon. His eyes moved around and his head turned to Isabella.
She could tell he was disorientated but it won't last long. He might have memories and might be compassionate but once he settles the demon will take over. Isabella still did nothing as she sat there barely breathing. Angel looked up and got up quickly and Buffy looked over and saw it too. Everyone saw it and got up ready knowing Isabella might not have it in her. Buffy held Angel back because this was up to Isabella. If they needed to do this then they would but Isabella needed a chance to say good-bye. Brian looked out of it as he was gathering in his surroundings. Isabella then reached out and touched his face; it was so cold, dead and pale.
"I'm sorry," Isabella started and the creature looked to her. "I wished things were different and I'm so sorry this happened to you, to become the thing swore to fight against." She sniffed trying to steady herself. "But it's ok" She whispered to him softly. "You didn't fail anyone, you didn't fail me." Then Brian went to sit up because she was the warmest body next to him and he needed to feed. He held out his hand placing it on her cheek and she wished it was him but all she felt was cold. Isabella was fast and grabbed his throat and held him in place as he tried to advance to her. Everyone flinched and was ready to charge and help but they remained standing and waited. "This isn't how I thought it was going to end for us and I wish I had more time."
Brian was struggling to get her and feed but Isabella was too strong as she kept him at bay and she knew it was time. She leaned in letting her forehead rest on his and Angel almost rushed off to stop this but Buffy held him back. Isabella let a few tears fall as the now vampire before her was getting impatient and wanted to eat. This was not her boyfriend but she had to ask and say it just so where ever his soul was he could hear it.
"Forgive me?" She asked. "I love you." Then she drove the stake to his heart and heard a small grunt of pain and in a flash he was dust. Isabella opened her eyes and before her was empty the dust cleared. She sat there and looked ahead with tears still running down her cheeks. Her chest hurt, she felt like she was dying. A part of her just did die. She sat there for moment taking in what she had just done.
Everyone else behind her stood there in shock and disbelief. Only one other person among them knew what it was like to kill the one you love. Angel didn't know what to do but by Isabella's body language as she stood up she didn't want to be touched. She sniffed and wiped the tears away and dropped the stake and let hit the ground and she turned around to the others. Angel and Buffy saw the red swollen eyes but the tears stopped running.
She could stay sad or get mad and get even. Everyone stood there not moving, to afraid to move. She walked to the group and Angel didn't move as she came to him. That wasn't a little girl anymore and within moments she was someone different. She stopped for a moment and looked to her mother, she saw red and all she wanted was blood.
"Izzy," Buffy stood there not sure what to say. She could see the pain and anger in her daughter's eyes. "Killing her won't bring him back."
"No," Isabella agreed. "But it's a hell of a start." And then she looked to her father. For a moment he was afraid of his own daughter, she was different now. The tears were turning into anger and he could nothing for her. Her face was now just blank and cold a far cry from the young girl he raised. She was hardening and he didn't know how to stop it. What could he say to her now? Angel looked away and Isabella kept walking as the group parted to let her through.
Angel squatted down taking a deep breath; his insides hurt seeing that much pain and anger. It felt like it was his fault. He was supposed to protect her from everything even sadness and he's failed. Glory better watch out because Isabella wanted blood. Buffy felt heartbroken for her but there was nothing that could be done; nothing would change it or bring him back. She watched Isabella walk away and she knew Isabella was about to be a force to recon with and Glory pissed off the wrong person.
So…that was not what you guys expected I'm guessing. So take a breather and yes Brian is dead. Glory had a vampire kill him in order for the group to decide and watch him die. And Izzy killed him just like how Buffy killed Angel. It's a bit different but yes it was done.
This is chapter 12, got a long way to go ok so just bear with this. As fair warning from here until the end really we hit the ground running nonstop and it's going to be chaos. What's next? Anyone as nervous as I am on what's next?
More to come soon. Yes a chapter in review will be in the forum if you wish to read it and maybe have some questions answered. Comments and reviews are welcomed. Thanks for reading.