Beaming a Hellmouth?
M. Scott Eiland

Summary: The USS Enterprise, commanded by Captain Christopher Pike,
encounters a strange phenomenon that hurls them into an alternate
dimension. . .the Buffyverse. Mayhem follows.

Disclaimer: All of these characters remain the property of their
owners/creators. . .I'm just borrowing them for a spell. . .

Rating: PG-13, for violence.

Time Frame: Just before "Prophecy Girl" in the Buffyverse. . .six
months after the Talos IV incident (portrayed in "The Cage" (original
Star Trek pilot) and the flashback scenes in "The Menagerie.") in the
Star Trek universe.

Note: For the reader who is not a deep fan of the Star Trek series,
Captain Christopher Pike was the captain of the starship Enterprise
immediately before Captain James T. Kirk. He and his crew were seen in
the original pilot for the Star Trek series, "The Cage" which never
aired (until it started appearing in the syndication packages during
the 90's) and in the Star Trek two part episode "The Menagerie" (which
used footage from "The Cage" as flashback material), as well as several
published Star Trek novels. The major officers and crew members are as
follows: Captain Christopher Pike (played by Jeffrey Hunter in the
series); the First Officer, known only as Number One (played by Majel
Barrett, who later played Nurse Christine Chapel and married Gene
Roddenberry); Second Officer Spock (yes, that Spock, played by the
legendary Leonard Nimoy); Jose Tyler, the helmsman; Yeoman Colt (the
captain's yeoman, paving the way for Janice Rand); Phil Boyce, ship's


Part 1

"Hyperdrive offline! We're being drawn into it, Captain!"

Tyler's voice betrayed the fear he was feeling, even as his hands
continued playing over the helm controls in a desperate attempt to
avoid the phenomenon that filled the screen ahead. Pike glared at the
thing on the screen, then snapped, "Full impulse! We'll try to
slingshot away from it. . .use its own force to throw us free." He
turned to the young Vulcan at the science station and snapped, "Science
Officer, report!"

Spock looked back at his concerned captain and replied, "Captain, the
force drawing us in is not registering on our sensors. However, its
effects strongly resemble the disruptive effects of a large collapsar.
. .we will not be able to use our hyperdrive in this area. I estimate
that the slingshot maneuver that you are contemplating will have only a
27.15 percent chance of success, with the alternative being that we
will be drawn into the phenomenon. Outcome: unknowable."

Pike nodded, then looked at the navigation station where Number One was
sitting. A quick nod from her confirmed that she agreed with Spock's
assessment. He gritted his teeth, and commented, "Nothing better to
try. ..hang on, everyone!"

The sound of the straining impulse engines grew louder and louder as
Tyler began to set up the breakaway maneuver. After a moment, he threw
a switch, and half of the crewmen on the bridge were thrown from their
seats as the ship lurched violently. Pike looked hopefully at the
screen, but he was disappointed: the ship had not changed course enough
to avoid the phenomenon that was now swallowing them up. . .

. . .and then they were through. Pike was gratified to see that space
here at least looked normal. . .but where had they ended up? If that
thing was some kind of wormhole, they could be absolutely anywhere. The
stars were rapidly whipping by, implying that the phenomenon was
throwing them away with considerable force. Pike turned to Tyler and
ordered, "Stop us in space, Mr. Tyler. I want to get a good look at
where we are."

Tyler quickly complied, and the ship came to a stop in space. Spock
quickly located the phenomenon approximately 200 million kilometers
from their current location, and began analyzing it for signs of how it
would behave in the future. Pike turned to Number One and asked, "Any
idea where we are?"

The first officer expertly manipulated her navigation controls for a
few moments, then her face displayed a truly rare emotion for Number
One: shock. Without waiting for further orders, she called up on the
viewscreen what one of the exterior sensors was showing as being but a
few million kilometers away: a gaudily ringed gas giant. Pike stared
for a moment, then whispered, "Saturn? What are the odds of that
happening?" He grinned and commented, "Well, I guess we were just lucky
this time. Starfleet Command will want to hear about this.. ."

Spock interrupted, concern visible through Vulcan control: "Captain,
the situation is not as fortunate as you believe. I am unable to locate
any of the Starfleet installations that are known to be on Titan or
elsewhere in the Saturn planetary system. . .for that matter, I see no
sign of Federation activity in the entire star system."

Pike turned to the communications officer and asked quietly, "Any signs
of subspace activity, Lieutenant?" The officer at the station shook his
head and replied, "Negative, Captain. Dead air."

Pike grimaced and commented, "It can't just be easy for once, can it?.
..Helm, set course for Earth. I want to see what is going on there."

Two hours later, they arrived, and Spock's report was no more
reassuring. "Captain, I am not sensing any of the expected Starfleet
installations here, either. However, I am finding a large number of
satellites committed for communications, weather observation, and
military applications. The level of technology involved is equivalent
to what Earth had in the early 1980's. "

Pike frowned and asked, "So what you're saying is that we've gone back
in time, Mr. Spock?" Spock frowned, then checked his readouts before
replying, "Negative, Captain. The sensors are reporting anomalous
readings that suggest that the laws of physics are subtly different
here, thought similar enough to let most of our systems operate
normally. We seem to be in another universe, Captain."

Pike took a deep breath: there was a sentence you didn't hear every
day. He looked intently at Spock and asked slowly, "Are we going to be
able to get out of here?" Spock looked at the readings that the sensors
had taken from the phenomenon, and almost smiled before his Vulcan
control set in. He replied, "Affirmative, Captain. Readings indicate
that the phenomenon will reverse polarity in approximately thirty six
hours, fifteen minutes, and forty two seconds, whereupon if we are in
the proximity of it, it will draw us through. Unless the dimensional
connection is to yet another dimension, it should take us back to our

Pike nodded in acknowledgment, then asked, "Do we have any idea yet
what is causing that phenomenon?" Spock looked into his scanner again,
then nodded and replied, "Affirmative, Captain. The phenomenon is being
generated by a dimensional rift on the surface of this version of
Earth. . .in the general area of what would be Santa Barbara,
California on our version of Earth."

Pike frowned and commented, "I suppose we could just leave and mark the
phenomenon with warning buoys . . .let Starfleet decide on any further
action. But I'm reluctant to leave this place without finding out the
nature of what is causing this problem. . .if it causes one of these
things, it could cause others." He looked at Spock again and asked,
"Mr. Spock, what can you tell me about this Earth?"

Spock looked over at the communications officer and nodded: the
lieutenant pressed a few buttons and transferred data to Spock's
station: Spock looked into his viewer and pressed a few buttons himself
before straightening and listening as the voice of the library computer
began reporting: "Analysis of carrier wave transmissions indicates that
the calendar date is May 15, 1997, 0100 hours GMT. Scans indicate that
space travel has lagged behind what is known to have been developed on
Earth by this time, by approximately 25 years. However, development of
computers has been accelerated here, with computers of all types having
reached a level of development equal to that attained in the year 2025
on our Earth. Other technological development is approximately
equivalent to that of our Earth of the same date. Socio-political
factors are somewhat different. . .no signs of the aftereffects of the
Eugenics wars. ..the United States of America remains the predominant
superpower. No other significant differences."

Pike nodded at the information and commented, "Thank you, gentlemen."
He hit the intercom button on his chair and spoke firmly,
"Quartermaster? I want you to provide clothing suitable to late
twentieth century Earth for a landing party of eight, specific
personnel to be indicated by the message you will receive in the next
five minutes. Pike out." He looked up to find his first officer looking
at him quizzically. "Do you have a comment, Number One?"

The dark-haired woman frowned and replied, "It's just that we're in
another universe here, Captain. We may find that things are rather
different down there than anything we've encountered before. Should we
risk it, given that we have an obligation to report the danger posed by
the phenomenon to Starfleet?"

As usual, Pike's first officer was flawless in her logic. . .but Pike
had other ideas on this occasion. "I agree with you the risk is
substantial, but we need to know what is causing this phenomenon. .
.and we have a considerable technological edge on the inhabitants. .
.it should be relatively safe." As he said this, he remembered his
recent confrontation with a barbarian with an axe, and reflected that
things were rarely as safe as they seemed. He shook off the uneasy
feeling, and stated, "Landing party will consist of myself, Number One,
Mr. Spock, Lieutenant Tyler, Yeoman Colt, Dr. Boyce, and Security
Officers Brennan and Davidson." He got up and looked at the members of
the party present: "We'll meet in the transporter room in thirty
minutes. . .we'll beam to the general area of the rift and see what we
can find out about it." He turned to the lieutenant at the engineering
station and commented, "You're the ranking officer on duty. Feel up to
taking command while we're away, Lieutenant?"

Lieutenant Montgomery Scott looked at Pike and nodded, elaborating,
"Aye, Captain. I'll keep her safe for you." Pike nodded and replied,
"Good. We should be gone only a few hours, but if we are delayed or
lose contact, you will proceed to the phenomenon and report to
Starfleet. If we're lucky, a rescue party can come for us later. . .but
informing Starfleet takes absolute priority. Are we clear?" Lieutenant
Scott nodded, and Pike commented again, "Good. All right, everyone. .
.let's see what's so special about this place."


The transporter whined loudly in the quiet of the night, clearly
announcing the arrival of the eight Starfleet officers dressed in
contemporary looking clothing. Upon materialization, they were all
taken aback to find themselves in a graveyard. Tyler was the first to
comment: "Ugh. Not the nicest place we've ever arrived at."

Pike grinned briefly, then sobered up, "Yes, but there's no time to
worry about it. . .we've got to find that rift." He turned to Spock,
who was fiddling with his tricorder: "Have you gotten a fix on it, Mr.

Spock fiddled a moment longer, then replied, "Negative, Captain.
However, I do have a general direction." He pointed to his left, and
the eight of them began walking in the indicated direction. After a few
minutes, they saw six human-looking figures approaching them. Pike
turned back to the others and reminded, "Remember, we're just looking
for a place to stay the night. . .don't engage them in any other
conversation." All nodded as the six people walked up: four men and two
women, dressed in contemporary clothing. Pike nodded at the tallest man
and asked, "Excuse me. . .we're from out of town and need
accommodations. . .could you direct us to a place to stay for the

The man smirked at Pike and replied, "Funny you should ask. . .my
friends and I were just talking about looking around for something to
eat. . .and guess what?" His features turned bestial, with fangs
prominent and gleaming, as did those of his five companions, as he
concluded his sentence:

"You're it."

Part II

Pike didn't know what in the hell these things were, but they were
obviously hostile. "Phasers," he snapped, and all eight of them drew
the tiny Type I phasers. As small as they were, they were far more
powerful than the hand lasers that they had used until just last month.
He looked at the ugly being standing near him and commented quietly, "I
don't think you want to do whatever you're thinking of. . .the
consequences will be most unpleasant."

The being laughed and replied, "What are you going to do, turn off my
car alarm with that?" He waved to the others, and they advanced, only
to stop abruptly when beams of energy from the eight weapons struck
them squarely. Pike immediately realized that there was a problem. The
sound of the weapons was odd, the light was less intense than usual,
and the reaction of the beings was as if they had been shocked by
static electricity, not the immediate unconsciousness that should have
resulted from the heavy stun setting. The creatures, after a moment,
continued their advance, and Pike only had time to shout "Hand to
hand!" before they were in intense combat.

Pike, Number One, Tyler, Spock, and the two security guards formed a
circle, protecting Yeoman Colt and Dr. Boyce, who were the least
capable in hand to hand combat of the group. Each of the six creatures
picked one opponent and began slugging away. Pike was rather
disconcerted to see that the creature seemed to be very strong, though
his combat skills were not up to Pike's standards; furthermore, blows
that should have had lasting effects did not. He was dismayed to see
that Brennan and Davidson were quickly overcome and were being dragged
off by their opponents: he was helpless to intervene, as he was
fighting for his life as it was. Tyler and Number One seemed to be in
about the same situation he was, and Spock actually seemed to be
winning. . .bless Vulcan physical superiority. After a moment, Spock
grabbed his opponent and threw it hard against a tree. It struck head
first and did not get up. Pike concentrated on defense and shouted,
"Spock! See where those other ones are taking Brennan and Davidson!"
Spock nodded and ran off.

Pike concentrated on his fight, but he was rapidly wearing down against
what seemed to be a tireless foe, and he could see that Tyler and
Number One were in similar straits. He saw Colt and Boyce fiddling with
their phasers, apparently hoping that a higher setting might work, but
that wouldn't help in these close quarters. He was frantically
considering options when he heard what sounded like a dying scream. He
looked over and saw a beautiful young girl leaning over where the
unconscious creature had been. She looked up and ran over to where
Number One was fighting: Pike could see what looked like. . .(a wooden
stake?) in her hand. She drove it into the back of the creature and it
promptly burst into dust. She went over to the one that Tyler was
fighting, and though it turned to fight her, it met the same fate as
the stake pierced its heart.

The creature fighting Pike noticed what was happening and tried to
flee, but the girl pulled off a miraculous acrobatic maneuver and
landed in front of the fleeing creature. A quick thrust, and the
creature was dust. She turned quickly to the stunned Starfleet officers
and snapped, "Are there any more?" Pike found his voice after a moment
and pointed. "That way." The girl nodded and ran off. Pike turned to
his remaining four party members and determined that they were all
right, but he quickly looked off in the direction where his second
officer and the strange girl had run off to. What in the hell was going


Buffy ran hard in the direction that the man had indicated. Just what
she needed, a bunch of tourists walking around Sunnydale at night. .
.as clueless as the residents here could be, even they wouldn't be that
dumb. She couldn't see any vamps. . .wait a minute. There was a figure,
apparently studying some gadget he was holding. At first, he looked
perfectly human. . .but as she crept close, she could see pointed ears.
She sprang at him, stake ready, only to see him whirl and block the
lethal thrust. They grappled, and Buffy was startled to feel the warmth
of the creature she was fighting. Not a vampire then. . .maybe a demon.
. .he was way too warm to be human. The stake fell to the ground, and
she struggled with him, noticing that his strength was equal to hers.

Spock had only noticed the girl at the last possible second, and he was
astonished to realize that an apparently normal human girl had strength
equal to his. Also, the close contact that the grappling situation was
creating was allowing his touch telepath abilities to pick up thoughts
from his opponent. Using the advantage that his greater size gave him,
he managed to place his hand on the forehead of the girl, fighting her
attempts to pry it loose while he repeated the mantra taught to him at
a young age: "My mind to your mind. thoughts to your thoughts."
After a moment, she ceased struggling, and the two stayed in close
physical contact for a few moments before she broke away with a shocked
expression on her face. Spock looked at her and apologized, "I'm very
sorry for the intrusion, Miss Summers, but under the circumstances. .."

Buffy glared at him for a long moment, then sighed, "I'm not thrilled
about you messing around in my head, Mr. Spock, but since I know you're
one of the good guys. . ." She waved at him and started back the way
she came. "Come on.. .those two vampires are long gone, and we'll need
to let your boss know what's going on here." She took off running, and
Spock was hard pressed to follow.


Pike and the remaining members of the landing party were examining
their surroundings, waiting for Spock to return and preparing for
another attack when the Vulcan and the strange girl ran up to them.
Ignoring the fascinating stranger for a moment, Pike locked eyes with
his second officer and snapped, "Report."

Spock ignored the bluntness of the order and replied, "I was unable to
locate Brennan and Davidson, Captain. From what I was able to learn
from Miss Summers, I would surmise that they are already dead. . .or
worse." He paused as the others reacted with dismay and confusion, then
elaborated, "Miss Summers attacked me, believing that I was one of the
creatures due to my physical. ..differences. . .and while we were in
close physical contact, I received psychic impressions that caused me
to believe that in spite of her apparent hostility, her intentions were
benevolent." The others stared, not accustomed to Spock casually
discussing Vulcan mental abilities: he continued, "I took it upon
myself to initiate a mind meld to try to determine the state of things
in this world, as it was clear that she was no ordinary human. Captain,
the source of the spatial disturbance is apparently what the local
residents aware of its existence call 'The Hellmouth.' It is an
interdimensional vortex, apparently blocked for the time being, that
makes this particular place attractive to creatures that we would
consider paranormal." He paused for a long moment, almost unwilling to
go on in spite of his belief that what he had learned from Buffy's mind
was the truth in this place, then concluded, "In other words, creatures
such as demons. . .and vampires."

Pike was at a loss for words, and even the usually unshakable Number
One seemed to be shocked as she queried, "Are you saying that the
creatures that just attacked us were vampires, Spock? As in the
creatures from Earth mythology? That's a lot to swallow."

Buffy was annoyed and snapped at the older woman, "Really? And I
suppose muggers where you come from just burst into dust when you stab
them through the heart?" She turned to Pike and commented, "Look,
Captain. . .Pike. . .right? I know that this is a lot of weirdness to
deal with, but you've got a problem. The vampires around here seem to
have been recruiting lately. . .and my guess is that they saw your two
guys as prime material."

Pike blinked and asked Spock, "What is she talking about?" Spock
quickly replied, "Vampires hunt humans for food; specifically, blood.
However, they also can transform a victim into one of their kind by
feeding them some of the vampire's blood. The new vampire has all of
the knowledge of the victim, but none of the old loyalties or moral
restraints. If Brennan or Davidson were to return to the ship in that
state. . ."

Pike needed to hear no more: he pulled out his communicator and hailed
the Enterprise. When the communications officer responded, he snapped,
"This is Pike. Brennan and Davidson are missing. . .if they should hail
you, under no circumstances are you to beam them up. . .only if you
hear me specifically authorize it should they be beamed up. Confirm
that you understand." He waited for the confirmation then commented
tersely, "Excellent. . .Pike out." He turned back to the others and
commented grimly, "Well, that eliminates that threat to the ship. .
.but we can't leave two creatures with the knowledge of two Federation
officers here. . .particularly if they have hostile intent. We have
obligations under the Prime Directive to clean up our mess." He turned
to Buffy and commented, "Miss Summers, we appreciate the help you have
rendered to us. . .both directly and indirectly, but we have apparently
inadvertently posed a risk to you. . .we would appreciate it if you
could tell us how we could track down our. . .changed. . .crewmen and
deal with them so that they don't pose an additional threat to your

Buffy took a deep breath as she took in the intensity of the stare from
Pike's blue eyes. * This guy's a serious hottie. . .wonder if he uses
this approach every time he lands on a strange planet, * Dismissing the
thought as not helpful, she replied, "The name's Buffy, Captain Pike,
and I think that I can take you to someone who can help us do that, and
who can let you in on the whole story about the Hellmouth, since it
seems to be involved in weirdness that we didn't have a clue about."
She turned to the others and beckoned, "Let's go. . .it will take at
least a couple of hours for them to turn, and we can get a jump on
them, if we hurry."


Angel sat in his apartment, a piece of charcoal in his hand as he
stared into space, contemplating the subject of his drawing. He had
almost finished it. ..Buffy in full battle mode, surrounded by three
vampires. . .her total focus was visible in the drawing, as was her
obvious beauty. He had portrayed her in mid-thrust, with the vamp she
was staking already bursting into dust. Another twenty minutes, and it
would be perfect. Unfortunately, the knock at the door totally
disrupted the moment. . .who in the hell could be coming by at this
hour? He briefly contemplated ignoring the knock, then decided
otherwise as the knock came again, far louder and more insistent. He
walked over to the door, grumbling, and was shocked to see who had come
to call. He took a deep breath, more out of habit than anything else,
then whispered, "Buffy."

She nodded to him and replied, "Hello, Angel." He waited for a moment,
then commented, "Uh, hi. What brings you here on this fine evening?"
She scowled at him and replied, "Nice attempt at casual, Angel. Not a
problem, though.'s all business tonight. We've got some seriously
weird visitors in town, and the local vamp population grabbed a couple
of them. Meaning that if we don't do something, we're going to be
dealing with vamps with some information that could seriously turn the
tide in favor of the bad guys. . .I need you on this one. Are you up
for it?"

Angel nodded, all business himself now. "Not a problem. . .who are
these guys, anyway?" Buffy grimaced and replied, "I'll fill you in on
the way. ..get ready for some seriously X-Files stuff, Angel." She
beckoned for him to follow, and Angel closed the apartment door and

In the meantime, the landing party from the Enterprise waited in
Sunnydale High's library with Giles, Willow, and Xander. Number One
walked up and down the stacks, noting with interest the
disproportionate number of arcane works on the shelves. Spock was
immersed in conversation with Giles, both fascinated by the prospect of
learning about radically different societies. Willow was talking with
Dr. Boyce, as she was greatly interested in the advances in medicine
that existed in the twenty-third century (or at least in the alternate
version of Earth they came from). Xander and Tyler were shooting the
breeze about sports and women. . .two topics that never went out of
style, no matter what the universe or century. As for Pike. . .he was
reviewing mission notes with Yeoman Colt, more out of a desire to keep
busy than any great need. He was still getting used to the idea that a
very small group of people, most not yet adults, were basically in
charge of holding off the end of this world. ..not a pleasant
situation. Still, they all seemed determined, and Buffy was certainly
more than capable at dealing with these creatures from what he had
seen. . .besides, they were seriously hampered on their end. Spock had
taken sensor readings and determined that the local laws of physics
reduced the power level of their phaser attacks by 99%. . .a full power
blast might stun a human, but would only slow down a vampire. . .their
weapons were useless to them. The party had four members who were
competent or better in hand to hand combat, but that was it. He was
pondering the inherent dangers of being in a hostile environment with
no technological advantages when Buffy returned, followed by a dark-
haired stranger with a brooding aura. She commented, "All right. .
.Angel thinks he knows where they'll take your guys to wait to wake
up." She waved to the occupants of the room and called out, "Let's go.
. .we've got some seriously gifted vampires to take out."

Part III

Andrew was bored. He leaned against the wall of the large crypt,
smoking a cigarette and idly picking at the sleeve of his Sunnydale
High letterman jacket. He hated recruiting missions, particularly since
the Master had decreed that they were to take no chances on letting the
Slayer catch the fledgling vampires as they emerged from the grave.
They had to sit and wait while the new vampires woke up, then help them
hunt. . .and that was always a drag. . .new vampires were notoriously
short on interesting conversation. He looked down at the strangely
dressed corpses, waiting for them to rise. He looked over at his
partner, Doug, and wondered where the other four vampires that had been
with them were. It had been two hours, and no sign of them. Those
tourists couldn’t have given them any problems. . .could they? Or had
the Slayer shown up? The Master had been infuriated at the horrendous
casualty rate that she had inflicted on the undead in Sunnydale, and
now, with Angelus helping her. . . He shuddered: if the Slayer had
killed four more hunters on this night, the Master’s rage would surely
be epic. . .and he and Doug would certainly suffer the consequences.

Doug seemed to divine his thoughts, and tersely commented, “They should
have come back by now. . .I think the Slayer might have gotten them. .
.the Master’s going to rip out our eyes and eat them for breakfast.”

“Perhaps not.” Both vampires turned to where the two fledglings had
arisen, wearing their true faces but looking far calmer than newly
emerged vampires typically did. The one who had spoken noted that he
had his audience’s attention, and continued, “You see, my friend
Davidson and I have some information that your Master just might be
interested in. . .that might turn the tide against that Slayer that
you’ve found so annoying. Interested in finding out more?”

Since most things beat having one’s eyeballs ripped out, Andrew and
Doug listened, and though their rational minds told them that these
were the ravings of a lunatic, something deep inside their psyches told
them that this strange vampire was telling the truth, and when he
finished, they were feeling relief at their salvation. . .and glee at
the thought that the Slayer might finally get what was coming to her.
Andrew nodded at Brennan and Davidson, and the four vampires exited the
crypt at a brisk pace.

* * * * *

Angel had identified several crypts as potential locations for emerging
vampires to be stashed out of the way of any intruding Slayers, and the
group was methodically checking them out. They had broken up into small
groups, covering a wider area while staying in earshot of one another.
Buffy and Pike had taken point position, and were quietly discussing
what they had found in the previous two crypts that they had searched.
Spock, Boyce and Giles were carefully going over the intricacies of
vampire vulnerabilities as they walked. Xander and Tyler carefully
checked out their surroundings from their position at the rear of the
group. Number One, Colt, and Willow stood in the middle of the group,
wielding stakes and holy water bottles, while Angel stood nearby, ready
to assist if those measures proved inadequate.

Buffy called out, “All right, this one is a bust. Move on to the next
location.” She stalked off, Pike staying at her side with effort.

As they followed, Spock turned to Giles and raised an eyebrow, “For one
so young, Miss Summers shows remarkable poise and leadership ability,
Mr. Giles. Perhaps placing the fate of your world in the hands of such
a person. . .is not as irrational as it seems on the surface.”

Giles frowned and replied, “It’s a cruel trick of fate, Mr. Spock. .
.Slayers, even the most capable ones, tend to die very young. . .only a
handful live past twenty. Buffy can be exasperating at times: she’s
stubborn, occasionally frivolous, and her use of the English language
causes me to shudder. . .but she’s resourceful, brave, and I can’t
imagine anyone I’d rather see in the job. . .though I wish she could
look forward to a better fate than she is likely to suffer.” He looked
downcast, and Spock felt a moment of inadequacy as he realized that
Giles could use a comforting word that he was not equipped to deliver.
He felt relieved as Boyce walked up behind Giles and put his hand on
the Watcher’s shoulder.

Giles didn’t react, but Boyce spoke anyway: “Giles, we all have to deal
with the hand that life has dealt us: Buffy’s not that different from
any of us in that way. Your job is a lot like mine: we give the person
options in trying to survive as long as they can. . .and they
ultimately end up making the choices. From what I’ve seen, you are
about the best chance Buffy’s got to live as long as she can. . .and
I’m sure she appreciates it.”

Giles turned at Boyce, and then to Spock before giving them both a nod
of thanks before turning to continue to scan the perimeter for
intruding vampires.

* * *

Tyler looked back nervously, then continued keeping stride with Xander
as he asked, “So just how good are vampires at sneaking up on people,
anyway? I’ve heard some of the old stories. . .but I assume that
there’s a lot of stuff that people just made up along with any truth in

Xander frowned and replied, “From what I’ve seen, most of them aren’t
any better than people are at it. . .though Dead Boy over there has
lurking down to an art.” He indicated Angel with a casually rude
gesture, then continued, “Until recently, they didn’t bother to be
sneaky. . .no one was around to give them grief, until Buffy showed
up.” He spoke the last sentence with a grim pride, and a note of
longing that Tyler didn’t miss.

Tyler grinned and commented, “You’ve really got it bad for her, don’t

Xander started and turned to the helmsman, replying, “Whatever gave you
that idea. . .Buffy and I are just friends. . .can’t have me getting in
the way of her obsession with Dead Boy, can I?” There was more than a
trace of bitterness in his words, and he turned away from Tyler in

Tyler smiled and commented, “Believe it or not, it hasn’t been that
long since I was sixteen, and I’ve seen that look in the mirror enough
to recognize it.” Xander looked back at him, and Tyler continued, “So
what’s the deal with them, anyway? Are they an item?”

Xander frowned and replied, “Since she found out he was a vampire,
they’ve kind of kept their distance. . .but she’s still into him. .
.even if there’s no future in it. I don’t know what to do.”

Tyler sighed and commented, “Basically, you’ve got the same two options
that you would if Angel was the Big Man on Campus, Xander: you can sit
back, hoping that she gets over him so you can step in, or you can step
forward and try to make things happen. Both approaches have their good
and bad points. . .but if you step forward. . .at least you’ll know,
one way or the other.” He nudged the teenager in the ribs and
concluded, “Besides, I’d say she’s worth sticking your neck out a
little for, wouldn’t you?”

Xander nodded and turned to Tyler, replying, “Guess you’ve got a point.
. all right, I’ll spend some time figuring out my smooth pickup line
later. Right now, we’ve got other things to worry about.”

Realizing the boy had a good point, Tyler nodded and checked behind
them again as they moved along.

* * *

“. . .so Malcolm turned out to be this demon that we inadvertently let
loose on the Internet, and Buffy, Giles, and Miss Calendar the computer
teacher had to save me from becoming his love slave. . .” Willow
paused, noting the appalled expressions on Number One and Colt’s faces,
and apologized, “I’m sorry. . .I forgot how this all sounds to people
who don’t have to deal with this stuff regularly.”

Number One and Colt turned to each other, then Number One turned back
to Willow and replied, “It is a lot to absorb, Willow. . .I’m still
struggling with the whole concept of vampires being real here. It seems
like a lot for you to deal with: Buffy has her supernatural powers, but
you. . .you’ve been dealing with all of this with only your wits to
defend yourself. . .as bright as you are, that can’t be easy.”

Willow smiled ruefully and replied, “It hasn’t been easy, and without
Buffy, Giles, and Angel I’d have been gone a long time ago. . .but it
has to be done, and it’s nice to be able to help Buffy out. I just wish
things could be easier on her. This whole thing with Angel being a
vampire hit her hard. . .unrequited love is bad enough-“, she commented
as she turned back and looked at Xander conversing with Tyler: both
Number One and Colt could see the emotion in her eyes as she turned
back and continued, “-but knowing that circumstances, duty, and any
number of other things will keep you from being with the one you care
about. . .how awful would that be?”

Both Number One and Colt looked straight ahead at the tall figure
keeping stride with Buffy, then turned back to Willow before speaking:

“Can’t imagine.”

“Me either.”

* * *

Pike was embarrassed to realize he was becoming winded: he prided
himself on keeping in tiptop condition; unfortunately, that training
was proving inadequate for matching the stamina of the Chosen One. He
cleared his throat and commented, “Buffy, I think it is
counterproductive to leave the others behind. . .and I could use a
breather, to be honest.”

Buffy turned, annoyed, only to note the sheen of sweat on Pike’s brow
and the distance she and Pike had put between themselves and the
others. She immediately slackened her pace and replied, “Sorry. .
.sometimes I forget. Anyway, we can use the extra time to discuss some
more things you need to know about vamps.” She launched into a lengthy
description of various vampiric attributes, and Pike noted that amid
all of the mangled grammar and casual manner, a keen mind was clearly
present. He smiled and commented, “So, basically, you chop off their
heads or stab them in the heart with a pointy stick, right?”

Buffy stopped in mid-sentence, annoyed, and gave Pike a dirty look.
After a moment, she noted the glint of humor in the blue eyes, and
realized that he was teasing her. * Didn’t think he had a sense of
humor. . .go figure. * She smiled sheepishly and replied, “Yeah, that’s
about it. . .and don’t get bitten.” She sighed and continued, “This all
must seem low-rent to you. . .Earth swarming with monsters and stuck
with primitive technology, while you and your crew visit all kinds of
strange places and live in a peaceful society. . .you’ve got it pretty

Pike frowned: he could see the weight of the burden the petite teenager
carried with her. He met her gaze and replied, “Yes, we do have it
good. . .but a lot of people in our twentieth and twenty-first
centuries had to go through endless misery, including nuclear war, to
come out on the other side. The Federation has encountered hundreds of
humanoid civilizations, and every one of them had to go through great
difficulties to reform their societies. . .and we’ve found a lot more
that didn’t make it at all. The difference between those who made it
and those who didn’t is a little luck. . .and people like you. . .and
Giles, Xander, Willow. . .and even Angel. People who saw what was wrong
and tried to fix it, even if it meant risking everything they held
dear. The Federation owes its existence to those people in our
dimension. . .and, since our counterparts in this place can’t be here
to do it for themselves, I will say it for them: thank you, Buffy.”

Buffy blinked to clear away the tears that had suddenly appeared in her
eyes, and replied, “I can see why you get to be the captain. .
.thanks.” She grinned ferally and commented, “All right. . .pep talk
over. . .let’s find those vampires.”

She moved out into the lead again, and Pike strained to keep up, noting
that Buffy was standing a little straighter and her walk was a little
more confident. He smiled and followed the Slayer.

* * * * *

Andrew knew that a few of the Master’s minions were hanging out at
Willy’s place: he went over and found four bored vampires, drinking
blood and exchanging horror stories about the poor bastards who ran
into the Master when he was in a bad mood. He quickly briefed them on
what he and Doug had found, and the disbelieving vampires followed him
outside, where Brennan and Davidson waited with Doug. It didn’t take
long to convince them of the newcomers’ bona fides, and the group
headed back to the crypt to plan how to present this gift to the
Master. Andrew was ecstatic. . .he pictured the Master’s pleasure at
the find. . .perhaps he would make Andrew his primary assistant. .
.after the Anointed One, of course. . .He would be at the Master’s side
as he ruled for a thousand years. He-

“Now what are you all doing wandering around out here on a fine night
like this? And where did your friends do their shopping? Red and black
are definitely not spring colors, people.”

With a sinking feeling, Andrew turned and saw the Slayer, her friends,
her Watcher, and Brennan and Davidson’s former crewmates. . .armed to
the teeth and looking angry. The Slayer smiled coldly and stared at the
new vampires as she continued, “Sorry, friends. . .no vampires from
another universe wanted here. . .you’ll have to leave.”

Brennan glared at the Slayer and replied, “Big talk. . .but there are
eight of us. . .I’d love to see you try to take us out.”

The Slayer chuckled and replied, “I do love it when they ask nicely.”
She rushed forward, and, with a flurry of activity, battle was joined.

Part IV

A melee involving nine vampires (one ensouled), a Slayer, six Starfleet
officers (including one half-Vulcan), a Watcher, and two members of the
Scooby Gang is bound to be chaotic, and this one did not confound those

One of the vampires made a beeline for the three “helpless” women, only
to find the tall brunette was seriously nasty in hand to hand, and the
other two were quite active with crosses and holy water, generally
making his life miserable. After a few moments of grim battle, a splash
of holy water in his eyes blinded him, and he had little time to
reflect before a stake entered his heart, causing him to burst into

Another vamp went for Tyler and Xander, and both men picked up some
scratches as they fended off their stronger opponent for a while as
they sized him up. After about a minute of trading blows, Tyler risked
a sweep, and managed to knock the vamp on his ass. Xander was ready
with the stake, and another vamp was dust.

Two vampires went for Giles, Boyce and Spock, and Boyce stepped back,
trying to find openings to use the holy water he had to maximum effect
while Spock and Giles engaged the vampires. Giles’ combat skills had
grown rusty from disuse over the last few years, but training with
Buffy had given him his edge back, and his opponent was ill-prepared
for a human opponent to put up such a ferocious fight. After about
ninety seconds, it dropped its guard for an instant, and Giles slammed
the stake home, dusting it instantly.

Spock’s opponent was more formidable: he was a century and a half old
vampire who had come to Sunnydale upon hearing that the Master would
soon rise again. . .he liked the idea of working for the vampire who
would finally rid the Earth of the pathetic infestation that was
humanity. He was puzzled at the appearance of the being that faced him:
had a demon turned traitor and allied with the Slayer, as Angelus had?
Its strength was unquestionable: more than once the vampire found
itself being forced back by superior strength. Still, it didn’t wield a
stake, and the vampire was feeling cocky when abruptly the creature
made a lightning fast attack, and the vampire felt its neck snapping as
it dropped to the ground. The injury would have healed with time, but
time was seriously lacking as Spock drew the stake out from his belt
and drove it into the vampire’s heart, ending its existence.

Andrew and Doug went after Angel: they knew that if the Master heard
that they had ended the existence of this arch-traitor who had killed
the Master’s favorite, they would be greatly rewarded. They were
dismayed to find that Angel’s reputation as a fighter had, if anything,
been understated. The ensouled vampire didn’t use any fancy moves: he
just relentlessly pummeled the two hapless vampires for long moments,
then abruptly pulled out a stake. At this point, Andrew bolted. He had
enjoyed life in Sunnydale, but he decided-as he heard Doug’s dying
scream as Angel’s stake rammed home-that living in the Master’s shadow
wasn’t worth all of this crap.

Buffy found herself facing Davidson, and wasn’t having an easy time of
it. The Starfleet self-defense tactics that had proved inadequate
against the vampires that had turned him were far more effective when
backed with vampiric strength and toughness, and Buffy was not familiar
with them. However, the Slayer still had the edge on strength and
speed, and the end result was that both combatants were getting in good
shots on each other. After about two minutes, Buffy had seen Davidson’s
entire arsenal of moves, and she had no problem blocking a straight
right, grabbing the extended arm thus exposed, and throwing Davidson on
his back, followed by a perfect staking. Smiling with satisfaction, she
looked around to see that the others were finished with their
opponents, except for Pike, who was chasing down the fleeing Brennan.
Cursing, she tore off after the Enterprise’s captain, hoping that she
wouldn’t be too late to save him.

Pike had caught Brennan about a quarter mile away from the rest of the
group with a flying tackle, sending the former security guard and the
captain sprawling. Brennan recovered first, and tried to rip Pike’s
throat out, but was thwarted at the last second by Pike regaining his
feet with a nice roll and flip. The two of them began slugging it out,
and Pike, as before, was dismayed at the strength and toughness that
the transformation had granted to his former security officer; however,
he was ready for it this time, and he managed to get a few shots in
that staggered Brennan before the vampire recovered and began a

Brennan was angry at the foiling of his plans, and was not hesitant to
let Pike know it: “You self-righteous bastard! Always so smug and
superior when you’re on board the Enterprise. . .too good to mingle
with your crew. . .it’s about time someone gave you what you’ve got
coming to you!”

Pike raised an eyebrow at the outburst, and noted that Brennan was
carelessly leaving an opening in his defenses. He pretended not to
notice it as he replied to the angry vampire, “You know, Brennan, if
I’d have heard you say that last week, I would have scheduled a meeting
where you could air your grievances without disrupting discipline.”
Abruptly, he struck through the opening with a combination, knocking
Brennan down and only giving the vampire a second to utter a gargled
scream before Pike staked him. Staring down sadly at the dust, he
concluded, “Unfortunately, you’re not my problem any more.” Shaking his
head at the waste of it all and thinking of the letters he would be
sending to Brennan and Davidson’s families, he got up, turned and saw
Buffy watching him with a compassionate look on her face. He smiled
wearily and asked, “How long have you been there?”

The Slayer returned the smile and replied, “Long enough to catch the
end and make sure he didn’t get lucky.” The compassionate look returned
as she commented, “I’m sorry, Captain Pike. . .it never gets any
easier, does it?”

Pike looked at the young woman and was forcefully reminded that this
was someone who had seen people she knew die, only to return as
monsters that she was duty-bound to destroy. If anyone understood the
burden he had assumed, she would. He looked over at her and replied,
“No, Buffy, it doesn’t. . .but you learn from things like this, and you
go on with life the best you can.” He smiled reassuringly at her and
suggested, “Let’s get back. . .the others will worry about us.”


They met up again in the library, after searching the crypt when the
vampires had holed up to make sure no futuristic technology-no matter
how impaired by the local environment-had been left; apparently,
Brennan and Davidson had been carrying their phasers and communicators
with them and they had been dusted along with the vampires themselves.
. .fortunate.

Tyler walked over to Xander, noticing that he was watching Buffy speak
to Mr. Spock. He nudged the teenager and asked, “So, are you gonna ask
her or not?”

Xander turned to Tyler and gave him an exasperated look before
replying, “Yeah. . .I guess I will. . just need to find the right
moment. We’ve got a school dance coming up. . .maybe then.”

Tyler nodded and grinned, commenting, “That’s the spirit. . .think
positively.” He grimaced and elaborated, “Besides. . .a little good
cheer couldn’t hurt you living here.” He extended his hand, and Xander
shook it firmly before the helmsman turned away and walked over to
where Boyce was talking to Giles.

Buffy was shaking her head as she told Spock. “I’ve got this weird
music in my head. . .sounds kind of like a harp, but different.
Something from your hit parade?”

Spock took a moment to decipher her question, then had to restrain
himself from smiling as he replied, “A Vulcan harp. . .if you
concentrate, you can probably visualize it.” He watched as she closed
her eyes for a moment, then nodded at him to continue. “Some random
exchange of information tends to occur during a meld. . .the conscious
effects should be temporary, though the information will remain in your
memory indefinitely.” He paused, considering whether to ask the
question that had arisen as he pondered the memories he had acquired
from Buffy. Curiosity won out, and he asked, “Miss Summers, what is a
Nerf Herder?”

Pike turned at the sudden burst of laughter from Buffy, then turned
back to Angel, who commented, “It’s good to see her in a good mood. .
.this life is hard for her.”

Pike nodded and noted the desolate look on his face. He replied, “And
being separated from her is hard on you.”

Angel flinched, and looked over at Pike, who elaborated, “Angel, I
didn’t get to be a starship captain by being dense. . .and I heard some
of the others talking. They’re worried about how Buffy is handling it.
. .and by the look on your face you’re not taking it much better.”

Angel nodded and replied, “We just have to. . .there are too many
things that can go wrong. . .we can’t allow ourselves to pursue it.”

Pike nodded and responded, “You’re right, of course. . .duty can be a
difficult taskmaster. But even if you and Buffy can’t be together,
these people are your friends, and you should seek their help in
dealing with this, just as Buffy does. Sitting alone in darkness and
brooding doesn’t help. . .and I should know. I’ve been a better captain
since I learned to relax a little among a few of my officers, and you
will be better equipped to seek your redemption if you learn to rely on
your friends.” He extended his hand to the vampire and concluded, “Good
luck.” Angel shook the extended hand, then turned and vanished into the

Number One was chatting with Willow when Pike caught her eye and
nodded. Number One smiled slightly at Willow and explained, “Time to
go.” The surviving members of the Enterprise landing party gathered in
the center of the library, and Pike opened his communicator and
ordered, “Enterprise, stand by to beam up six on my command.”

Buffy walked up to Pike and commented, “I guess this is it. . .other
than the whole ‘vampires from the future threatening to really make my
life difficult’ thing, it was nice to meet you. . .and thanks for what
you said. . .it meant a lot to me.”

Pike smiled and replied, “It was nothing you didn’t fully deserve,
Buffy. . .good fortune to you and yours. . .now, step back a bit. .
.transporters can be tricky if you’re too close to the effect.”

Buffy nodded and stepped back as Pike spoke into his communicator:
“Energize.” The six persons were engulfed by a shimmering light that
emitted a loud whine, and they slowly faded out of existence, leaving
the spot empty. There was silence for a long moment, then Xander felt
moved to comment, “Cool. . .can we get one of those?”

Buffy looked over at him and smiled, replying, “Not yet. . .but give us
a few hundred years, and who knows?” She walked to the library window
and looked out at the stars, searching for a faint spark of light that
she knew she would not find, though the fact that it was out there was
giving her a feeling of warmth that she had not felt in a long time.


The transition back to their own universe had been as uncomfortable as
their exit from it, but they had the comfort of knowing that they were
going home. When the process had been completed, Pike turned to the
bridge Engineering station and commented, “Send my compliments to the
department for a job well done. . .and, once again, good job at holding
down the fort while we were gone, Lieutenant Scott.”

The engineer nodded and smiled at Pike, then went about his tasks while
Spock moved over to the captain and commented quietly, “Captain, this
phenomenon seems to be long-term in nature. . .we can seed the area
with warning buoys, but it will remain a potential hazard. . .not to
mention the danger posed by the creatures living within.”

Pike nodded and replied, “I know, Spock. . .I’m going to send a private
communiqué to Starfleet with our mission logs, seeking guidance. In the
meantime, no one who doesn’t already know about this is to be told
about what we found down there.” He frowned, his thoughts focused on
the brave group of people they had met so recently, and commented,
“Hopefully, by the time Starfleet has occasion to have further contact
with that universe, Buffy. . .or her successors. . .will have made it a
safer place for us. . .and for them.” Spock saw the grim look on his
captain’s face and nodded before returning to his duties.

Uncaring of the concerns of her master, the Enterprise left behind the
space phenomenon, speeding away to its next mission.


AUTHOR’S FINAL NOTE: Hope you all enjoyed this. . .I’ll probably do a
sequel in a little while, set in fourth season BTVS and during the time
frame of Star Trek TOS.

As always, comments are welcomed and desired.