"It'll be fun."
"Matt, I really have to study. I have a Math test on Friday."
Matt glanced at his watch. "It's Wednesday," he stated. "Besides, you're smart you can get that stuff in minutes."
Lynn rolled her eyes. "Why can't we go out on Friday instead?"
"Please, Lynn?" Matt begged. "Just a ride around town and a movie. Then you can go home and study all you want."
Lynn's expression changed as she considered it. "Fine," she gave in. "You promise to have me home by nine?"
"Oh, absolutely," he answered.
"Okay, I'll see you later."
With that, she turned and headed for the school's exit.
Buffy looked over Willow's shoulder as the latter typed furiously at the computer. It was seven o'clock later that day and they gang minus Lynn, Jade, and Daniel was once again assembled at the library.
"God, I thought I'd never get here!" a female voice exclaimed from behind them. Everyone turned to find Cordelia Chase Harris standing at the doorway. "Damn taxi."
"Cordy!" Buffy cried as she went over to hug her friend.
"Hey, Buffy," Cordelia muttered as she hugged her friend. "I'd complain that you're wrinkling this one of a kind, but I'm pass that..."
Buffy pulled back and slapped her friend's arm lightly. "Same ol' Cordy, huh?"
"Hey, honey," Xander said as he kissed Cordelia's lips gently. "Glad you could make it."
Cordelia huffed. "I almost didn't!" she cried. "First, Henry forgot the script. And the filming was delayed two hours just because costume couldn't get the right outfit on time. They actually wanted me to settle for a..."
"Uh, oh," Willow muttered from the computer, saving everyone for Cordelia's tirade. "This is so not good."
"What is it, Will?" Buffy called.
Willow looked up at Buffy with wide eyes. "I hacked around a bit and I found Matt's birth certificate," Willow replied. "It's a hoax. It was planted there six months ago. Other than that, there is no real record of his existence."
"Meaning that Matt could very well be Nicholas' nephew after all," Buffy concluded. "This is really not good."
"Nicholas? Matt?" Cordelia asked, puzzled. "Who are they? What about the prophesy?"
"Long story, sweetie," Xander said, taking her hand and bringing her to the table to sit down with him and Oz.
The library doors opened, allowing Jade and Daniel to walk in. "Hey, everyone," Jade called out.
Buffy walked over to them. "Where's Lynn?" she asked.
Jade frowned and looked around. "I thought she was here."
Buffy shook her head. "She told me she was going to go out with you two."
"Oh boy," Jade murmured. "I think she might've gone out with Matt."
"After I specifically told her not to," Angel commented.
"Welcome to fatherhood," Xander said cheerfully.
"Come on guys, we gotta do something!" Buffy said desperately.
"I'm going after her," Daniel said suddenly. The silence that followed was almost too loud.
"No, you're not," Buffy answered. "Angel and I will handle this."
"She's my best friend," Daniel protested.
Buffy sighed and put a gentle hand on the boy's arm. "I realize this," she replied softly. "She is our daughter. But I think Angel and I are better qualified to do this."
"Buffy, if your dream is indeed real," Giles spoke, "it might be best if you take some precautions before going to face Nicholas. He is very dangerous and in your condition..."
"What condition?" asked Cordelia. No one answered.
"Can't you guys do a spell or something?" Buffy asked impatiently.
Willow stood up from her place at the computer and walked over to stand in front of Buffy. "I think we can do a sort of tracking spell. Something that will let us see through you and help out if you need it."
"So do it!" Buffy cried.
Willow pressed her lips. "One small problem," she said. "I'm not a real witch and the spell is too powerful for me to do it."
Buffy narrowed her eyes. "Then get some on who can."
The library doors opened and they all turned to see Amy step inside. "Hey guys," she said.
Willow grinned. "Right on time!"
Amy smiled and walked over to Willow. "What do you want me to do?"
Willow showed Amy the spell and quickly discussed what they needed. "Okay, I think we can do this," Willow told Buffy. "Just stand stand right there. Amy and I will recite some words, we'll do some mumbo stuff, you'll feel sorta uncomfortable for several moments and then, tada! Amy gets a vague image of what's going on with you and she's powerful enough to counter anything Nicholas might throw at you."
"Well, not anything," Amy said. "From what you tell me, this guy's way more powerful than I am. But I can try..."
"That's gonna have to be good enough for now," Buffy replied. "Come on. Let's do this quickly."
Willow and Amy took their positions on either side of Buffy. Willow said several words in a language Buffy didn't understand and then Amy did the same. Buffy looked from side to side, getting dizzy as Willow and Amy took turns, each muttering only a few words. There was a sudden movement from one side and Buffy turned to see Willow jerk slightly. But she only noticed it briefly, for she started jerking herself. Her head shot up and she closed her eyes tightly. She now felt as if there was someone else in her mind, but if that's what it took to save her daughter, that's what she would do.
Slowly, she opened her eyes to look at Willow and Amy. Willow now seemed fine but Amy still had her eyes closed and her head bowed. Buffy looked to Willow, a silent question in her eyes.
"She's in a trance. I can bring her out of it when you get back," Willow explained quietly.
"This is hurting her, isn't it?" Buffy asked quietly.
Willow bit her bottom lip as her husband and best friends awaited an answer. "Just go."
Buffy squeezed her friend's hand and nodded her thanks. With a final glance at Amy, she turned to Angel and motioned for him to follow her. "We're outta here."
"Good luck," Willow called after Buffy and Angel as they left the library.
She sighed and turned to look at the others. "Hey," she said suddenly. "Where's Daniel?"
Lynn shook her head. "No, Matt, really," she said. "I just wanna go home."
Matt frowned and looked at his watch. "But it's only 8:30!" he protested. "You said you'd be with me until 9:00."
Lynn sighed. They had been driving around town for ten mintues, just talking and enjoying each other's company. But Matt had insisted they go to Lover's Lane and Lynn just wasn't in the mood for making out tonight. Or who knows what Matt had planned. "I know. I'm sorry. I'm just real tired."
"Oh, come on, Lynn, it's no big deal," he replied. "You really don't mind do you?"
The words froze Lynn. She felt her hairs stand on end and her pulse quicken. It's no big deal. You don't mind do you? The very words he had uttered in her dream.
Realization hit her like a bucket of cold water in the morning. Her dream might have not been what was literally gonna happen, but it was significant. And she had purposefully ignored her parent's warnings against Matt.
"As a matter of fact, yeah, I do," Lynn found herself saying. "Um, look. I really, really wanna go home. If you won't take me, I'll walk."
Matt narrowed his eyes, but quickly got over it. "No, no, it's okay," he said. "I'll take you."
Lynn nodded, relieved. Matt stopped the car and hit reverse so that he could take her home. Or so she thought. She pointed the other way as Matt took a wrong turn. "Hey, Matt, my house is the other way."
Matt didn't answer. Instead, he turned on the radio and pretended he didn't hear her. Again, Lynn felt her skin tingle as the weird feeling she had been getting from Matt lately began to arise.
It was several minutes later when they reached his destination: Lover's Lane. He stopped the car and turned off the radio.
"Matt, I told you I wanted to go home," Lynn said calmly.
"And I told you I'd get you there," he answered just as calmly. "I just didn't say when."
"Matt, you're scaring me."
He didn't answer, so Lynn reached for the door handle.
It was locked.
Lynn closed her eyes. "Open the door, Matt."
"Sorry, babe," he said with a grin. "No can do."
"Okay," she replied with a sigh. "What do you want from me?"
Matt shook his head innocently. "Oh, no. It's not what I want. It's what Uncle Nick wants."
Lynn opened her eyes and turned to face him. "Uncle Nick," she stated. "As in Nicholas. This is so not good. Why didn't I just listen to Dad?"
"A very good question indeed," said a faint voice, which she identified as coming from the outside of the car. A voice she vaguely recognized as Nicholas'. "Maybe now you'll learn that father knows best."
Matt opened the car door and stepped out, allowing Nicholas to look inside. His red hair and emerald green eyes both shone in the darkness of the night. He wore a leather trench coat over a white t-shirt and black jeans. "Come now, Evelynn. You shouldn't resist. Not without your precious strength."
Lynn started breathing heavily. She had been feeling it all day. At first, it was that she couldn't get her locker to open as easily as she used to when the door was stuck. Then, it was that she couldn't undo the wrapping of the Sneakers bar she had eaten earlier that day. Now she didn't even the normal strength a human possessed to open a car door. It wasn't locked after all.
She whimpered silently.
"It's a prophesy," Nicholas continued. "And yes, I know it's your mother who it's talking about and not you." He smiled coldly. "See if I care. You and Matt here," he pointed at his nephew, "will create an offspring that will give me ultimate power once it dies. And since I know it won't be willingly, it's gonna have to be the hard way. I'm sorry, Evelynn."
He paused and considered his statement. "No, actually, I am not," he amended with a grin.
Lynn shook her head. "You're insane," she whispered. "You can't just twist a prophesy like that. Prophesies are what's meant to be, not what you make them to be. And... and, anyway, what does Matt have of a 'dark angel?'"
Nicholas raised an amused eyebrow. "Why, he's the son of my sister, a Slayer, and the vampire she was raped by."
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