Chapter 5

A/N: Review! Tell me what you think!

"Hey," Buffy smiled, opening her eyes to Angel.

"Hey," Angel smiled back. "Today we actually have to work. I got a call last night about some type of weird demon. We gotta check it out. It's not a demon for my human employees to deal with."

"Okay," Buffy shrugged. "I was kind of missing the action anyways. LA isn't quite as evil as a Hellmouth, ya know?"

"And for some reason it's nicknamed the city of the devil by most," Angel grinned, tickling Buffy.

They laughed together, and then got ready for work, resisting the temptation to stay in bed all day.

"I should probably take a shower by myself this morning if we are going to spend a sexless day at work. Didn't we discuss us not working together because of this very reason?"

"I think we should give it our best shot beforehand. We did work together once before, for three entire years."

"Thank god you remembered that, I thought we might actually have to work separately."

Angel kissed her sweetly as she pulled on her robe and grabbed a towel. They shared a look of sweet bliss.

"Go on, I will meet you at the office," Buffy murmured in his ear. "I think you should catch up on any work I've distracted you from over the past two weeks."

Angel looked at her and flashed her a look of surprise.

"I suppose I do have a lot of work to do, I guess I hadn't really thought about it."

"I will be there in a few, alright?" Buffy smiled, kissing him before walking to the bathroom. "Get some work done, boss."

Angel smiled at her retreating figure, then he went to work. Just as Buffy had predicted, there was a pile of paperwork waiting for him. He, however, was much more interested in the demon Wes had called him late last night about. He handed the paperwork off to a temp and told her to figure out what he needed to really look at from that pile. Then he searched out Wes.

"What kind of demon?" he asked, bursting into his office.

"Well, um, that's the thing, we've never seen anything like it on earth before."

"What?" Buffy said, walking in just then. "Like the First?"

"Well, no, it appears to be just a demon."

"So why hasn't anyone heard of it before?" Angel asked. "Isn't a demon's goal in the afterlife to walk the Earth?"

"This isn't just any demon, Angel," Wes remarked.

"Woah!" Buffy exclaimed. "You are saying that it came from a hellmouth, aren't you?'

"Actually, it was created by a hellmouth," Wes corrected. "Otherwise we'd have history about it."

"But Cleveland is across the country," Angel argued.

"There's no way it could have gotten past all the slayers in between Cleveland and LA without us hearing about it," Buffy puzzled.

"That's because it's not from the Cleveland hellmouth," Wes explained.

"What are you talking about?" Buffy asked. "Wait, did a hellmouth form underneath LA?"

"Buffy, hellmouths take decades to form," Angel reasoned.

"Oh my god," Realization dawned on Buffy. "You mean the demon came from Sunnydale..."

"Yes," Wes sadly informed her.

"How is that possible?" Buffy demanded. "Spike died destroying it!"

"Using an amulet of some sort, correct?" Wes asked.

"Yeah, the one I delivered to her," Angel frowned.

"The amulet is very powerful," Wes began. "It's power is to restore things to their nathral order. Sunnydale was created as a feeding ground for the hellmouth. It's unnatural for that many demons and that much evil to coexist with humans. The amulet destroyed both the hellmouth and the town to fix this."

"So what happened then?" Buffy inquired.

"The hellmouth existed without Sunnydale for many years. The amulet is restoring it to that original state."...

"How do we stop it?" Angel demanded.

"There is only one way," Wes began. "You must destroy the amulet. That will reverse anything done by the amulet without the champion."

"So we'll just go to Sunnydale and destroy it," Buffy decided.

"Easier said than done," Wes sighed. "Sunnydale is now overrun with demons. They have no humans to hide in the dark from, and no slayer to destroy them."

"We'll need an army of slayers then," Buffy nodded. "I think we need to have a Scoobies meeting tonight."

"What should we do til then?" Wes asked.

"Well, Angel and I are going to talk to a more hellmouth experienced Watcher, and I am going to call all the slayers I can. You can do whatever you like."

"I'd like to help," Wes pleaded.

"You could have helped six months ago by telling us about this," Angel pointed out coldly.

"Now we have to lead a crop of newly called slayers into battle and clean up this mess," Buffy growled. "Thanks for the warning."

Wes stayed quiet, knowing they were right. He didn't really think there was anything he could say to calm either of them down. Realizing he was finished pathetically trying to defend his actions, Buffy and Angel spun around and stormed out of his office in unison.

"You go talk to Giles, I'll get everyone else," Buffy told Angel.

LA may be Angel's turf, but when it came to hellmouths and slayers Buffy was in charge. Angel accepted his order without question, arriving at the library in minutes. Much like the Sunnydale High library, this one was nearly vacant of people. Angel had ridden in his car with its blacked out windows. He pulled his leather jacket up in order to cover his face. As soon as Giles saw him, he ushered him into a back room. Giles could immediately tell that something was seriously wrong from the look on Angel's face.

"What is going on?" Giles demanded.

Angel launched into the summarized version of Wesley's explaination. Giles expression was livid by the end.

"If I had only asked what the name of the amulet was... The Amulet of Sacara, of course! Why didn't he tell anyone?!"

Giles was turning red in the face and his fists were clenched so tightly that his knuckles had turned white.

"Buffy is making some calls. We are going back to Sunnydale. This time, there won't be a Sunnydale left when we leave."

Giles nodded, narrowing his eyes at the entire situation.

"We should find the others and fill them all in."

Just then, Buffy burst through the doors.

"I've got 30 slayers on their way here," she said, using her war general voice. "Let's round up anyone important here for a breifing. I need to grab some things from my apartment, so I'll get Willow, Kennedy, Dawn and Xander while I am there."

"I'll go with you," Angel decided.

"I'll find out everything I can about this amulet," Giles informed them.

Buffy and Angel swept out of there and took a taxi to the apartment complex. Buffy changed into her patrolling outfit, and then pounded on Willow's door.

"Apocalypse time," Buffy told her.

Willow and Kennedy were ready to go in thirty seconds.

"Do we get dinner at the meeting?" Kennedy asked.

Buffy hadn't realized how quickly the day had gone by. It was almost six o'clock.

"Giles is cooking," Buffy stated. As they made their way downstairs, Buffy knocked on Xander's door, but there wasn't a stir from inside.

"Something's up," Buffy stated nervously. "Dawn's with him too."

Buffy turned the unlocked doorknob and walked into a dark and lifeless living room. Angel, Willow and Kennedy flanked her. Grabbing a stake from inside her jacket, she slowly turned the door handle for the bedroom, not sure what she would find. She prepared herself for the worst and opened the door to find a scene so revolting she had to scream.

Dawn and Xander were on the bed, their limbs so entertwined that they looked like one whole person. They were half naked and their lips were so sucked together it took them a while to break apart when they heard Buffy's scream.

"Oh. My. God." Willow spit the words from behind gritted teeth.

"Xander, you have 10 seconds to run before I do something I might regret tomorrow, like killing you," Buffy told Xander in the calmest voice she could muster. "Dawn get your shirt on now."

"Buffy, I-I..." Xander stuttered.

"9..."Buffy seethed.

Xander grabbed his shirt and ran, sending Dawn a quick look of apology.

"Buffy, I know you would kill him, since you're a slayer and all, but I have normal human girl strength, so can I go kill him?" Willow asked.

"Please do," Buffy nodded.

"Kennedy, you should stay here," Willow warned her lover. "I might try to use your slayer strength."
"I actually might need you for this anyway, Kennedy," Buffy announced, still staring at Dawn.

"I'll be glad to help," Kennedy seemed upset as well. She and Dawn had gotten close since they moved to L.A.

"Dawn, upstairs, now," Buffy ordered.

"Buffy, do you want me to stay? Because I would like to help Willow…" Angel asked gently.

"Stay," Buffy responded. "I am going to need your help on this lecture too."

The four of them rode a very silent elevator ride back to Buffy's apartment, Buffy and Dawn exchanging looks the entire time. As soon as they reached the apartment and closed the door behind them, Buffy opened her mouth.

"Sit," she ordered Dawn in a tone that was not to be challenged.

Buffy paced back and forth in front of Dawn for a minute. Angel and Kennedy watched Buffy, nervous for how she was going to react. They chose to sit on the couch facing Dawn behind Buffy. They looked at each other and exchanged a fearful glance.

"Before I begin," Buffy spoke, turning to Dawn. "I'd like to hear how and why this happened."

Dawn looked at her hands and took a deep breath.

"I am 18 now," she said, strength coming into her voice. "Which legally makes me an adult. I can do whatever the hell I want."

"That doesn't mean you can do whoever the hell you want," Buffy snapped. "Especially when that person is supposed to be trustworthy enough to take care of you."

"Xander and I are only four years apart," Dawn shot back. "It's not like you never did anything like this."

"The age part is only the tip of the iceberg, but if you want to start with that, then go for it. You are only just 18! He is 22! That is a huge age difference. He's had two very serious relationships while you were still just growing up."

"I'm all grown up now! And since we're going into ages, what about when you were 17 and had sex with Angel, who was how old? 243?"

"That was completely different!"

"In what way? Just because you're the slayer?"

"That and the fact that I made a mistake. I wish I would've waited and not acted so rashly. If you recall, it ended with Angel losing his soul and me having to kill him."

"Xander is human, first of all, so that wouldn't happen."

"Xander also just lost the love of his life," Buffy cried. "Angel and I were the loves of our lives, there was no doubt there."

"And? I am 18."

"And I no longer can trust Xander with you. I was worried sick about you tonight. I thought I was going to open that bedroom door to find you and Xander dead!"

"I didn't think…"

"That's right! You didn't think!"

"Buffy…"

"Dawn, tell me how it happened."

"But…"

"I am just going to get angrier the longer it takes for you to tell me."

"We were working, and we were both sad about Anya and Spike."

"So you decided to have sex because you were sad?!"

"I'm sorry, what did you do with Spike a year and a half ago? Was that any different?"

"Yeah, I actually died and then came back to life. It was kind of a big thing."

"Right, well how long are you going to keep playing that card?"

"That's enough!" Buffy shouted. "I need something to punch. I'll be back. You two try talking to her."

With that, Buffy walked out the door. Of all the times this could have happened, now was so not right. She and Angel had woken up so happy in their perfect little world this morning, well, Angel technically hadn't woken up, but, whatever. Now they were facing unimaginable horrors in Sunnydale and Dawn was "shacking up" with Buffy's supposed best friend. Buffy had seen Xander change over the summer. He had had casual sex all summer with random women. She hadn't really thought of it as a problem. It was just his way of grieving over Anya. Buffy had never considered that he'd pull this on her sister though. Xander had crossed a line tonight. Buffy kicked a loose rock on the sidewalk. She couldn't believe how irresponsible he was being. He knew that Dawn had always had a crush on him and he had taken advantage of him.

Suddenly a hairy looking demon rushed out of the shadows. Buffy was powered by her rage and in a manner of five seconds, she snapped his neck. It made her feel a little better. She watched him melt into goo, then disappear. This might have been the Sunnydale demon Wes had told her about. It was too late to confirm that now, but there were plenty more waiting in the nearby small town. She realized that as much as Xander seducing Dawn was a betrayal to her, she needed them both in order to go into battle again. Xander had the necessary military skills. Although Dawn was just an ordinary human that at one point had been a ball of energy that opened the gates to all the realities, she had this strength in her that the group dynamic needed. Dawn was ready to fight, even to the death. Buffy realized that part must be a Summers women thing.

She turned the corner to find Willow screaming at Xander.

"Willow, stop," Buffy calmly placed a hand on her best friend's shoulder.

"Buffy, he deserves to suffer," Willow explained in a dark tone.

"What he did was wrong, but we need him for what comes next."

Xander looked at Buffy hopefully, like she might forgive him.

"There is one thing that does need to be done before that though," Buffy frowned. "Something I'm forgetting… What am I forgetting? Oh, yeah!"

Then she punched Xander in the nose.

"I remember now. Hold your nose back, it's a bit of a walk back to the apartment building."

Buffy called Giles and told him to meet her at her apartment and not his after all. Upon arriving at her door, she pressed her ear to it and almost laughed out loud. She motioned for Willow to put her ear to the door as well and motioned for Xander to stay away. Angel and Kennedy were trying to give Dawn a sex talk.

"It just should be with someone you really care about, Dawn," Angel was saying.

"It's called making love for a reason," Kennedy backed him up.

"Well did you love the people you guys gave it up to?"

"Well, uh, technically, uh…" Angel stammered, thinking of his womanizing days before he turned into a vampire. "Guys are really bad. All they want is, well, sex. Once a woman gives that to a man, but the man doesn't love her, he doesn't respect her."

"Did you disrespect women?" Dawn asked, amused by his flustering.

"Well, I was a bad man," Angel tried to come up with the best response.

"But I should trust you with my sister?" Dawn asked.

"Your sister and Angel are in love," Kennedy responded for Angel.

"Were you in love with the person you lost your virginity to?" Dawn turned to her.

"No, not really, but she was nice… I think…" Kennedy stuttered.

Buffy leaned over to whisper in Willow's ear.

"We should go save them," she hissed.

Willow nodded. They opened the door and both Kennedy and Angel sighed in relief.

"Who punched him?" Angel asked, grinning.

"Me," Buffy smiled back. "But we are going to need him for what comes next."

"I slapped him," Willow offered. "Wait, what do you mean? What's coming?"

"Before this situation happened," Buffy gestured to Xander as he got a papertowel for his nose. "Angel and I had an apocalypse to share."

"Right," Kennedy stood up, gearing for a fight. "What's the problem?"

"Sunnydale may be gone, but the hellmouth is restoring itself." Buffy blunted spat out.

"How is that possible?" Willow asked, shocked.

"The amulet Spike wore, it needed to be destroyed," Angel explained. "It's power restores things to their natural state, and right now it's reversing the restoration it did, thinking that evil is Sunnydale's natural state."

"So whath doth that mean for us?" Xander asked with his bloody nose.

"It means that demons are running the place. They are growing and recreating. There are some demons coming out that have never walked Earth before. Without the townspeople to hide from, the hellmouth has turned into a nest of pure evil."

"I already called the slayers," Buffy informed them. "I didn't dare ask the ones in Cleveland. They've got their own hellmouth to worry about. The most experienced of the rest that can get here by tomorrow are all on their way though."

"Well, then we have a chance?" Dawn responded.

"Not exactly," Buffy sighed. "The place is probably crawling with all kinds of evil by now. Some of it has reached LA already. This amulet is powerful, and the answer to how we win. Destroy the amulet, and it erases any work it's done without the wearer of it."

"So how do we destroy it?" Willow asked.

"That's the question," Buffy shrugged. "Giles is on his way over right now with some books to help us figure it out. In the meantime, we need to make sure our army can withstand the demons long enough for someone to sneak by and get to the amulet. That is our top priority."

"I have a team available at the firm," Angel offered. "They could be ready to go now."

"Perfect," Buffy nodded. "How many?"

"50," Angel replied.

"I think we should do some recon and find out exactly how many demons we are fighting before we start assembling an estimate of an army," Xander replied in his military tone.

"You're right," Buffy agreed, grudgingly.

"We could take the jet," Angel suggested. "Or the helicopter."

"Why don't we get a helicopter, Buff?" Xander tried to joke, but everyone just glared at him so he shut up and sat down at the kitchen table.

"We should go tonight, as soon as Giles gets here," Buffy decided. "In the meantime, get your team together."

Angel nodded and stepped out to make some calls.

Giles walked in not a moment later with a victorious expression on his face.

"The Amulet of Versuces!" he exclaimed, a book open in his hand. "How did I not remember this before?"

"What does it say?" Buffy urged him on. "How do I destroy it?"

"Well it seems simple enough," Giles set the book down and wiped his lenses. "You just stab the gem with a sword made out of titanium… oh, that might be a problem."

Setting the book down, he caught sight of Xander's bloody nose and the bloodstains on Buffy's knuckles.

"I am not sure I want to know what happened here," Giles frowned. "Anyways, let's see if Angel can get a sword made of titanium."

"Sword of titanium?" Angel asked walking back into the room. "You're joking. That's how they killed Versuces in the end… Amulet of Versuces, of course. God, I should've known."

"Wow, so none of you can remember the little extremely important things about vampire history anymore," Buffy remarked.

"Buffy," Angel protested.

"Buffy, if we had had any idea what it was, we would have had you destroy it the moment Sunnydale came to ruins," Giles told her.

"I know," Buffy sighed. "Who was this Versuces guy anyways?"

"A greek demon," Angel began. "He was a vengeance demon, but he went rogue. He went wrong. Vengeance demons aren't supposed to destroy the world, just a few people out of spite and anger. He did unspeakable things without anyone even wishing for them. He broke the rules. The amulet was given to him as a power source when he began as a demon."

"Some witches, uh, put a curse on it once he had gone too far," Giles continued on. "They made it to try and return him to his natural state. It was supposed to make him mortal and human once more. While it had turned him mortal, he had done too much to ever be human again. The only way they could kill him was a sword made entirely of titanium."

"Titanium was the toughest metal one could find back then," Angel explained. "It was stronger than steel and people didn't really understand the full power of gun powder yet. At least, not like they do today."

"So they killed him, and then what happened to the amulet?" Kennedy frowned, curious.

"They hid it on a small Greek island," Angel explained. "But people have been recorded for using it for the past half of a millennium."

"We need to destroy this thing forever," Buffy decided, determined. "Angel and I should go do the recon. You guys stay here with Dawn and figure out the sword of titanium thing."

She thought for a moment about who all would be staying with Dawn and changed her mind.

"Actually, Xander, you are coming with us."

The helicopter flew high over the dense terrain for about ten minutes, and then it lowered down. Angel, Buffy and Xander watched in horror at the scene below them. The hole where Sunnydale had once stood was crawling with hundreds of demons. There wasn't a single square inch of demon free space.

Buffy glanced down and noticed the most important part, a silver glow at the very center of the hole. It was the amulet, in the very center of evil.