DISTRIBUTION: At my site www.harley-quinn.co.uk. If you want it just ask.
DISCLAIMER: Buffy and her cohorts belong to Warner Bros, Mutant Enemy, Fox etc. Batman and associates and the JLA all belong to DC Comics (which incidently, belongs to WarnerBros too). I own none of the characters but the thin thread of plot is mine and I cling to this like a life line. It's mine! I tell you and I gain no money from it but the immense satisfaction of turning the characters into whatever I see fit.
SUMMARY: Buffy/Batman/JLA (Justice League of America) X-Over. Summaries of the groups preceeded part 1 of the story so there's no need to not read it just because you don't know who they are. I have provided! :) Buffy goes to Metropolis for her summer job at the Daily Planet. Nothing works out the way you think when you come from the Hellmouth. Buffy's POV.
SPOILERS: Some Season 4 and 5 BtVS, Season 1 and 2 Angel. (No WW this fic is not for you-sowwy.) DC spoilers are up to Jan2001 comics.
DEDICATED: To cHeWtOy as always. To Panthera and Susie for beta'ing and Panthera for giving me the idea in the first place, and to Soul, angelsbitch, Melissa, Eliz (esp. for her US ettiquette advice) and anyone I might have forgotten who had to hear about this and the word counts over the three and a half days that I spent writing it (incidently the total fic weighs in at just over 22300 words, just the fic, without the headers.)

I choose to start this story now...

Part 9
by cHarley

Day six, somewhere between the subway and the elevator doors opening on the offices of the Daily Planet my world erupted in Metropolis.

"Oh no..." This cannot be happening. I ran to Lois' desk and used the stake I habitually hid in my waistband to kill the demon sitting at her desk. A stake to the heart will kill just about anything. Except zombies and that's just cause they're too stupid to die. I grabbed Lois' phone while she stared at me in astonishment. I punched in the magic shops number and bounced on my feet while I waited for Giles to pick up. "No time. Need help now. Check the Codex and anything else you know of. A demon eruption in Metropolis. It's the licorice allsorts bag of demons. And find out where Ethan is. If he's behind this I'll string him up by his entrails."

I could hear Giles processing my shouted instructions. He stammered something about needing my phone number. Fortunately Lois' was written on the phone. I gave him the number, "and please hurry Giles. I'm gonna have to coach the big blue boyscout in demon hunting. I think this is too big even for him." Giles said he understood and would work as quickly as possible. We hung up and I turned to look at Lois and came face to chest with Superman. "Uh... hi. I guess you heard that."

He nodded.

"You don't have anything against killing do you? These guys don't go down without missing limbs or punctured hearts. I expect vampires to be added to the mix later. Is there anyone you can call for help?"

He raised an eyebrow and nodded. "The JLA and Batman but.."

"No time. Get them here then I'll explain." This I knew how to handle. I broke a hat stand and handed a stake shaped fragment to Lois. "If it's not human stake it. Try to get everyone safe but don't endanger yourself Lois. We still have that article to write." I jumped onto the back of a large demon and tried to get myself in the right position to snap its neck. Finally managed it after what felt like an age and started to run across the room to help Lois free those that demons had managed to catch.

I heard my phone ringing in my pocket as I dived across the room. I staked the vampire that held Jimmy before answering my phone.

"Make it quick."

"I think that the spell that may have released these demons is what made you ill. That was the energies that give you your power trying to warn you. The energies themselves have been sickened by what has happened. They've been sensing the malevolent force in Metropolis. If I'm right, this sort of spell would have taken days to prepare. There isn't anything else I can find. Everyone is still hunting but I think you were right about that."

"So find a way to end it and a spell to send them all back. Can't talk. Slayage." I hung up and shoved the small phone into my pocket, using the approaching demons own momentum to drive the stake into his heart. "YUK!!! This so very beyond gross. Why did the Fates choose me? Couldn't they have chosen someone who can afford the dry cleaning bills?" I whined as I tried to shake the slimey goop that the demon disintegrated into off my arm.

A chair broke across the back of the blue demon that turned to face me next. The surprise attack made it fall onto its face. "Lois, I told you..."

"I never listen. Ask Superman or Clark."

"Duck!" I threw my stake at the demon that was running at Lois.

A gust of wind picked up the staked demon and dropped it out the window. The gust of wind turned into a stern looking Superman and he didn't know whether to yell at me or Lois. "Don't start big boy. How long till your friends arrive?"

"They're already here."

"That's great. I'd ask how but we don't have time. Can you take me to them?"

He picked me up and flew out the window.

Less than 1 wind-whipped minute later Superman landed us without a bump on the shadowy roof of a nearby building where an impromptu meeting of the superhero crimefighting committee was about to take place. "Buffy, this is Batman, Batgirl and Robin, and these are Green Lantern, The Flash, Wonder Woman, Plastic Man and J'onn J’onzz," Superman introduced the costumed folk standing around me. I felt like a dwarf, even Robin was nearly my height. "Nightwing you've already met," he said and I heard a note of disapproval in his voice. I think Nightwing winked at me.

Wonder Woman smiled and spoke, "Aquaman could not make it and sends his apologies. He will join us if and when he is able."

"Uh, thanks. It's great that you are all here to help. This is going to be difficult to believe at first..."

"We have faced a great many strange things Buffy," J'onn said.

"Hey Buffy, where's your costume?"

"Don't have one," I answered the young man, distracted by movement to my left. I don't know how it got up here but a vampire was charging at J'onn from across the roof. This whole week has been one big weird. I began running and flipped over J'onn landing behind the vamp and dusting him. "I work mostly nights and most of those I fight don't survive to tell. I don't generally save humanity from itself. My job is almost completely in secret. Demons, invisible people and nightmares. Vampires are my speciality. I'm a Vampire Slayer. You are free to laugh now." They stared at me.

"She's telling the truth Batman. Buffy Summers is the latest in a long line of Vampire Slayers. She hunts and kills vampires and demons and all sorts of things that go bump in the night. She is the Slayer. The most celebrated from what these accounts detail. She's the longest surviving Slayer ever. She does this every night Batman. She didn't choose it. It chose her. No superpowers. No costume. She was born with the potential for extra strength, heightened senses and healing. It wasn't until the Slayer before her died that she received these abilities."

"I *am* standing here. I could have told you that but you didn't ask," I shrugged. "Who is that and isn't it cruel to keep them stuffed in a watch?"

"How do you cope with it?" Batman's watch asked.

"I have a few friends who know. It's my destiny. If I don't hunt them, they hunt me. It's a survival thing. Besides it's who I am as much as each of you is your superhero persona and your not-so-superhero persona. Who are you?" she asked the wristband.

"You can call me Oracle."

"That's not what I asked."

"It's all I'm telling."

"Cool... so can I beat up the Batman later to find out who you are?"

"Uh... no. Much as I'd enjoy seeing the Bat black and blue from a fight with a young woman less than half his size and weight we might need him tomorrow night."

I shrugged. "Ok. So what's the sitch?" I asked everyone.

The looked at me blankly. "Ok. There's all of us. If Giles was right this is going to get worse. Is there anyone else to help if we need it?"

"Uh, yeah. The Titans are on stand-by," Nightwing said.

"So are Young Justice," Robin added.

"Er... ok." Like I know who they are and how to contact them. "So this is how it works. The last 5 years of my life in 200 words or less. Vampires will have fangs and brow ridges. Fire, beheading or a stake to the heart will take care of them. The other demons are a little trickier. Without my Watcher to give us more information, I would suggest simple beheading. Most of them will degrade to dust or slime or something gooey. When you stake or behead a vampire remember not to breath in or you get a lung full of dust. I need my weapons bag at some point but right now just find a sturdy branch and use that. Right. Everyone got that? Clear as mud huh? I was the same when Merrick first told me about all of this. You'll get the hang of it. It's just a different way to save humanity."

"We'll work in teams," Batman said taking over. "Superman and Nightwing, Wonder Woman and Plastic Man, Green Lantern and Robin..."

"Cool," Robin said.

"The Flash and J'onn, Buffy and Batgirl."

"And you on your own? No deal. You may have the drop on the crazies that prowl the night in Gotham but you have no idea what could be out there. Batgirl and I go with you." I heard Nightwing and Robin snicker. "This isn't funny. You may think you've all stepped into a book of fairytales but this is my life. It killed me once, literally. I had to send my boyfriend to hell because of it. If you aren't 100% serious about this, I'll do it on my own. My friends can be here tomorrow. We've averted the apocalypse before. It doesn't take superhumans to do it. Just a sense of reality and a lot of teamwork."

"Sorry Buffy," Nightwing said and the way he said my name told me who he was. Dick Grayson.

"Are we finished bickering?" I asked. I can't believe how much I sound like Giles. That's worse than sounding like my mum. "Superman can you take us to the most central place in Metropolis?" He nodded. "Batman have you got a spare one of those watches?"

He reached into his belt and handed one to me. "This button will connect you to us. This one to Oracle."

"Thanks. Uh... Oracle?" I said, pressing the button Batman had shown me. "You're on a computer right?"

"Several actually."

"Can you contact a Rupert Giles in Sunnydale?"

"I can put the call through to you."

"That would be fabulous. Can the others hear it?"

"Just a second.... Hello Mr. Rupert Giles? Please hold for Buffy Summers..."

I spoke as we followed Superman to the edge the roof. "Hey Giles. AHH!!! What are you doing? Put me down! No. Wait! Don't. I feel sick... Sorry Giles. I've got help, just need some more info. Got anything for me?"

"Who's helping you Buffy?"

"You wouldn't believe me and Xander would wet himself with excitement."

"Uh... ok. Well, it would appear that Ethan may actually have something to do with this but not directly. A friend in Metropolis, a former Watcher has been watching the signs and he thinks that the energy alignment two nights ago allowed for a new temporary Hellmouth to be opened. He thinks one of Ethan’s former students may be behind it."

"Any way to end this quickly? I've got a group of large, muscled rookies not used to the hunt and kill pattern."

"I'm still looking into it..."

"Maybe Oracle can help. She's like Willow only more high-tech and not witchy. Gotta go Giles. Oracle?"


"Meet Rupert Giles. Giles, meet Oracle." I turned my head to glare at the person I was pressed against as I flew across Metropolis' night sky. "Thanks Superman. How many people have wet themselves in panic when you've done that? Cause you are so lucky I went to the bathroom before I left the house."

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