Rating: T (maybe some M later on)
Summary: Roughly one year after Favors (beginning of Season 7), the First and Buffy prepare for the end of days.
Disclaimer: I do not own anybody, except for Finley. Joss Whedon will forever be my hero.
A/N: Please favorite and follow so you can receive emails when I post new chapters and review if you can! I love the feedback.
Chapter One: Welcome to Sunnydale
Finley Jamison-Smythe wasn't too excited about headed towards another Hellmouth. She pressed her forehead against the bus window and closed her eyes when she saw the sign.
Welcome to Sunnydale.
There should have been a sense of relief that she had reached her destination. Instead it felt like there was ball of lead in her stomach.
She caught her reflection, trying to ignore the fact she hadn't slept in days. Or eaten in two. She had hitchhiked out of Ohio until she had robbed some poor guy for bus fare. The hitchhiking part wasn't hard at all. Finley's long curly red hair and green eyes made her pretty easy bait.
She was sixteen when she had been called to be a Slayer and it seemed like the last year and half was a blur. Despite that, the last three days were as vivid as they ever would be.
They had broken into her home she shared with her watcher, Magdalene. The robed men never spoke and attacked so quickly that Finley hadn't seen the curved blade slice her watcher's throat behind her. By time she had killed the deformed man who had attacked her, the one who had slain Magdalene had escaped. Finley had been informed the week before that girls had been murdered all over the world by men who had looked like these. The men with scarred faces and gashes for eyes. Madgalene had smiled at her gently, assured her that it would be OK. That they were safe.
She had lied.
Finley didn't want to stick around and wait for another watcher. The honest truth was that she was terrified they would return for her. She had swiftly packed her belongings and left, finding an address written down in Magdalene's room by her jewelry. At first Finley had been surprised when she recognized the name. Buffy Summers.
Women like that used to be fables to her. Her father, Merrick, had left her mother when she was very young. Her mother was never very tactful especially when she was drunk. Finley she was an accident and her father had left to "protect her" but her mother never really believed that. After her mother had died when she was twelve, Magdalene showed up out of nowhere to take care of her. She claimed she and her father had been very close friends before he had confided in her about his only child.
Magdalene had never lied to her. She had told Finley that she had fire inside of her and so she could be trusted with the truth. Her father had been a Watcher, a well respected one who had trained and lost five slayers. He had died protecting the sixth charge-the one and only Buffy Summers. Finley grew up reading Watchers' journals, including her father's. She had trained in martial arts and magics.
A year and half ago, Buffy Summers had died and Magdalene had been finally honored with being a Watcher. But her excitement was bittersweet when she learned that Finley was her Slayer.
The bus came to a halting stop and Finley gripped her backpack as nerves came over her. This was the only place she could think to go. The elderly bus driver looked at her, concern etched on his face.
"Miss, do you have someone meeting you? This town gets dangerous at night."
Finley laughed. "I can handle myself. But thank you. Actually could you point me in the direction of the high school?"
He gave her directions and watched her warily as she exited the bus. Finley walked the streets of this strange town for awhile before she felt someone behind her. She rotated quickly, her fists up to guard her face only to find a familiar face looking back at her. She instantly relaxed.
" I'm breaking and entering into a school," she quipped. "I guess there's a first for everything."
Magdalene fell into step with her as the high school came into view. "We need to close the seal. It's the only way you'll be safe. It gives those men who killed me their power."
Finley's eyes burned with tears for moment but she quickly pushed them away. "I need to use my blood. I got it."
With a renewed purpose, Finley strode to a window to break into. The First briefly smiled with satisfaction when her back was turned. Sometimes things just worked out so perfectly. Finley effortlessly made her way to the basement following the instructions she had been given. She paused at the door after she descended the steps. She bit her lip nervously.
"Maggie, I don't know if I can do this. This place...it feels-"
The door flung open and two Bringers reached out to grab the young girl to pull her into the room roughly. Finley fell onto the dirt and looked up to her watcher in confusion.
"Like a trap?" The First mocked. "You mortals are so damn emotional. Your dead Watcher reaching out to you from the beyond to protect you even after death..."
She barked in laughter. Tears streamed down Finley's face as the two Bringers took advantage of her shock and held her down. The larger one dug a sharp knife into her gut. Finley screamed in agony when he withdrew the blood stained knife. She curled into a fetal position. The Bringer turned her onto her back then pushed the young girl onto the seal. Her blood seeped onto the mural before it began to glow. Finley managed enough strength to roll off of the seal as it began to open.
The Bringers looked to the First for the next step.
"It's fine boys," she said. "I don't want to fully open it yet. I just need a playmate until I get some things lined up. Something to distract the Slayer and her group of dimwits."
The five points of the seal rose and a soft light filled the room. Finley shut her eyes, almost succumbing to the pain in her midsection. When she opened them the light was gone and the most vicious creature she had ever laid eyes on was coming towards her.
"No!" The First commanded. The Turok Han stopped in its tracks despite its practically salivating over the blood spilled before him. "I need you to go with the men with the creepy faces for now. Leave her here."
The creature growled at Finley but obeyed. The First knelt next to Finley. "Sweet girl, I'm not going to kill you. The last thing I need is another Slayer called. What I do need is for you to bring a message to Buffy."
Finley managed enough strength to ask, "What?"
Everything in her body was burning. Then The First, wearing the face of her psuedo-mother, whispered into her ear before Finley lost consciousness.