Boris, Doris, & Faith
Author: duaneaa at gmail dot com
[Author's Note: This story starts approximately two minutes after the end of the series finale. It is a crossover with the movie 'True Lies'. With the actor Eliza Dushka playing both Faith and the daughter in 'True Lies', this always has been an obvious crossover to me, but I have never seen it done before. Of course, I have only read maybe one-tenth of one percent of all the Buffy the Vampire Slayer fan fiction out there, so I could have missed it! Anyway this is my take on the crossover.]
Disclaimer: As always I own nothing. Well I own a house, two cars, a pair of jetskis, and a lot of other junk, but none of these characters.
Rating: PG-13 (At this point I think this is going to be a simple action/adventure story. If anyone makes an interesting suggestion in another direction, perhaps the rating will go up.)
Boris, Doris, & Faith
Chapter 1 - Part 1
Exhilaration, exhaustion, satisfaction, pain.
I felt all these things and more as I stood there with all of the new slayers looking out at the gigantic, smoking hole that had been Sunnydale.
Although mostly it was satisfaction, this time I had been on the right side in the battle with the big bad. And it felt good.
The death of my first watcher. That evil bitch watcher. Killing the mayor's assistant. And, of course, 'The Mayor' himself. At every turning point since I became a slayer, it seemed like I had been driven down the dark path.
Finally, for the first time since I arrived in Sunnydale four years ago, I could look past dark times and see a potentially better future. Unfortunately, as a slayer, thinking about the future sometimes seemed to be sufficient to set things in motion.
At least that's the way it seemed this time. The bus had been stopped for less the five minutes. Willow, Giles, and a few of the new slayers were helping the more critically injured of the survivors, but most of us were just standing and looking out at the devastation. It was lucky most of the town had been evacuated before the worst of the trouble or the death total would have been in the tens of thousands rather than in the hundreds.
Anyway, none of us were paying much attention as the car pulled up and a man climbed out. He slowly walked over to where we were gathered at the end of the road. The road that just fell off the cliff.
After a couple of the minutes the man said, "Dana, we need to talk."
One of the new slayers was named Dana, but I recognized the voice. It had been almost five years since I had talked to him. Seeing him here, now, was a huge surprise, but I had a lot of practice at not showing my true emotions, especially after the years in prison. However between the post-fight lassitude and the shock of seeing him, I didn't even bother with my normal sarcasm.
"It's Faith now, Albert." I said.
"Okay, Faith. But you know I prefer Gib rather than Albert." He responded in his usual jocular manner.
I nodded my agreement. If he could accept that I am Faith now, then I could call him Gib. Even though only my father called him Gib and I wasn't certain I was ready to think about my father just now.
Buffy and Xander, who had been standing on the other side of me, gave me a questioning look. Sighing, I realized it was going to be an afternoon for some difficult explanations.
Turning, I made the introductions.
"Gib, these are my friends, Buffy Summers and Xander Harris. Well, I hope we are friends at this point. We have just been to hell and back together." B and Xan both gave small nods and my heart lifted a little. We would never be best friends after some of the things I had done to them in the past. For the moment, we are at least allies and maybe almost friends, but that was all too complicated to go into right now.
Turning to the others, I continued. "Guys, this is Albert 'Gib' Gibson. He used to work with my Dad."
As expected, I got raised eyebrows at this statement. All I had ever told about my history, before becoming the Chosen One, was the story about my drug-addict Mother - a story which had only been a convenient fabrication. However now looked like a time for the truth.
Oh, I could just talk to Gib in private, but I was determined not to drift back to the dark side. And secrets always seem to lead me into darkness.
Gesturing back towards the bus, I said, "Let's find a spot in the shade. I have some explaining to do."
As the four of us settled to the ground, I tried to decide where to begin. It seemed like one of those times where it was better to just rip the Band-Aid off with one quick jerk rather than a slow, gentle motion. Better to get the lies out in the open quick and try to move on.
Looking at Buffy and Xander, I said. "Everything I told you about my life before I became a slayer was a lie."
I expected more of a response, but they both just waited patiently for me to continue. I guess when you have been through all they had in their lives in Sunnydale it takes a lot to cause a shock. Particularly, Buffy. I mean when I found out she had been dead, buried, and in heaven for four months, I guess the fact I lied about my past does sound like pretty small potatoes.
"I originally grew up in D.C., not Boston. I only arrived in Boston a short time before I became the Chosen One. My name was Dana Tasker. My Dad, Harry, was in computer sales and traveled a lot. My Mom, Helen, was a secretary.
"I had a typical suburban childhood until I was eleven. Then I was kidnapped by terrorists. You know those guys who set off the huge bomb on that deserted island in the Florida Keys. The one they first said was a nuke, but then it turned out to be a large cargo ship full of fertilizer?"
As Xander slowly nodded, Gib interjected, "They didn't want to alarm the public. It really was a nuke."
I wondered at this unusually forthright response from Gib, but then perhaps it was related to why he was here.
"Anyway, the terrorists had taken me to Miami and we were at the top of this high-rise office building that was under construction. The terrorist leader claimed to have another bomb and he was going to detonate it and destroy Miami, if his demands were not met. I couldn't understand why they had grabbed me and taken me to Miami, but being just a kid they weren't keeping too close a watch on me. I managed to steal the key to the bomb and tried to hide up on the roof.
"The terrorist leader followed me up. Now, as I said, the building was under construction. A large crane was attached to the side of the building with a long arm extending out over the side of the roof. To get away, I crawled out onto the arm. Not the smartest tactic, but I was young and scared. As I clambered away from him, he just kept following. I threatened to drop the key, but he just kept coming. Finally, I was reaching the end of the arm when this incredibly loud noise started coming from below. I looked down and there was this military jet directly below. Just hovering."
"Cool, a harrier," interjected Xander.
"No," shaking my head, I continued. "The cool part was when I looked down, the canopy slide back, and there was my Dad yelling at me to jump down. My Dad, the computer salesman, flying a jet. Rescuing me.
"Well, to make a long story short, my Dad saved me, blew the shit out of the terrorists, and then landed in the middle of a busy intersection in downtown Miami."
"So, I'm thinking your Dad is not just computer salesguy," remarked B.
I laughed. "Yeah, just like you're not just high school guidance girl, Wil is not just college girl or Giles is not just former librarian guy.
"Turns out my Dad was some kind of super secret agent. A real James Bond. Except with a wife and daughter. Perhaps that explains some of my violent tendencies. I just inherited them from my father. Apparently, he has killed a lot of people."
"But they were all bad," said Gib, echoing a comment my Mom had once told me.
I know I shouldn't have, but I had to do my best Buffy impression. I put on the sweetest, most innocence face I could manage and said. "Killing people is wrong."
Gib shook is head. "For some people, it is necessary."
"No," said Buffy, obviously still in anti-demon crusade mode after the past months spent battling 'The First'. "Look around you, there are plenty of monsters and demons and hell-gods to slay. People need to be helped. Killing people IS wrong."
I had tried to mock Buffy a little by saying that line, but hearing it from her sent chills down my spine. Ever since my return from prison, Buffy has seemed so different. Almost like she is no longer merely human, merely 'The Slayer', but is becoming something more. When Wesley told me Cordy had evolved into a higher being, it was hard to believe. But being around Buffy lately, I have this feeling in my gut that she is evolving into something else, too.
Or perhaps it is just her unique perspective after spending time in heaven. How many others have ever returned from there?
As my thoughts wandered, Gib started to turn the conversation in a direction I hadn't expected.
"I need your help," he said looking at me. "It doesn't involve killing people, but it does involve demons or monsters or something."
Then he paused and made sure I was looking him in the eye when he said. "And your parents."
Chapter 1 - Part 2
My Parents. I wasn't the only one to get involved with my Father in that little adventure in Florida. Somehow my Mom had also taken part. When we were reunited in Miami, I almost didn't recognize her. I mean my Mom had always been just my Mom: a little frumpy and starting to get a little stoop shouldered. When she and Gib showed up at the local FBI office where my Dad and I had been taken, she was still wearing this little black cocktail dress. She was covered with what looked like soot from a fire and sported a split lip and the beginnings of a black eye, but all I saw was this beautiful woman I had never seen before. I remember thinking, 'My God, my Mom is actually hot.' And she looked closer to 25 than her actual 36.
After the spectacular rescue by my Dad, his cover story was blown with me. I mean even at eleven, I wasn't so naïve to believe computer salesmen had access to military jets to save their daughters. So the three of us had a long heart-to-heart talk that afternoon.
I was a little surprised to find out my Mother had been as much in the dark about Dad's actual occupation as I had been. But I was a lot more surprised when she told my Dad that if he wanted to continue to be in the spy biz, she would only permit it if she was allowed to participate, too. I never got all of the details of what had happened to them during the 36 hours I had been kidnapped, but apparently Dad liked the changes in Mom.
Once I got used to them, I really started to like the new, improved Mom, too. She was just so vibrant and alive, like every day was a wonderful adventure rather than just one more day to cross off the calendar hanging on the inside of the pantry door.
I never got all the details of how my Father wrangled it, but one month later my Mom went to work for the 'Omega Force', a secret black-ops off-shoot of the NSA. For the next three months it was just me and Dad, as Mom disappeared for some specialized training.
I had thought seeing her in that black cocktail dress in Miami had been a shock, but when she got back from that training course, Wow. My Dad and I had just watched 'Terminator 2' a couple of days earlier on HBO and the first thing I thought when I saw her was 'Linda Hamilton'. She had this incredible muscle tone without looking like one of those grotesque female body-builders. And she just moved differently, graceful and powerful at the same time. I was just reaching that age where girls really start paying attention to boys and I noticed how my Mom now had, what's the word? Presence. We could walk into a restaurant and every male eye in the room would follow her. Before this she could walk into a room and no one would give her a second glance. Or truthfully, even a first glance. But afterwards, it was like men could sense the power and danger in her. I don't know what that training course involved, but I never saw that look in men's eyes for any other woman until I got my slayer powers and realized I was receiving the same looks I had seen directed at her. Of course, at 15 I sometimes had a harder time not letting that power go to my head than my Mom did in her thirties. Okay, let me be honest, plenty of times I did give in to that power I had over men.
After my Mom returned from the training course things in the Tasker household more or less returned to normal. Except every couple of months my parents would disappear for a few days or a couple of weeks and the 'sales trips' or 'marketing conventions' ruses were no longer required.
Things went on like this until my thirteenth birthday. We had just returned home from dinner and were cutting the birthday cake when the phone rang. It was a 'Boris and Doris' call, my parents' silly euphemism for an urgent assignment.
After quickly opening my gifts and getting Mrs. Katz from across the street to come stay with me, they headed out. It was only suppose to be a week to ten days. I never saw my parents again. Twelve days later Gib showed up at our door. All I was told was that it involved 'National Security'.
Gib would never say anything more, but from the look in his eyes it had always been obvious to me that he knew more than he was telling. Ultimately, this led to our falling out and my being in Boston on that fateful day when I became the 'Chosen One'.
Now perhaps after all of these years I was finally going to find out what had happened to my parents.
Chapter 1 - Part 3
After Gib made his comment about my parents I spent several minutes just thinking about them which I had trained myself to avoid over the past few years. Finally, I asked, "Are they alive?"
Gib looked down at the ground for a moment. "Maybe."
Before he had a chance to explain further, Kennedy ran up.
"Willow says she and Giles have done all they can with the injured, but some of them are going to need a hospital and real doctors. They want to get on the way."
Buffy nodded and started to get up. As she took a moment to stretch her muscles she turned to Gib and said, "Gib, how about you ride with us awhile? I will get one of the others to follow us in your car."
"That's not necessary, B. I can ride with Gib," I said.
Buffy reached down a hand to pull me up. "Faith, while you're here you are still one of us. If one of us needs help, we all pitch in. That's why we always win in the end. Now we are all going to listen to what Gib has to say and see what we can do to help. Okay?"
I just nodded, but I am sure she could see the extra brightness in my eyes. I had always been forced to depend on myself, but it was nice to realize I might have the resources of the whole group, if I needed them.
We piled onto the bus with Gib, me, Kennedy and the core of the Scoobies in the back two rows of seats. As the bus got underway, I introduced Gib to the ones he hadn't met yet and brought them up to speed on the conversation so far.
"So," I concluded. "My parents left on a secret mission on my thirteenth birthday and never returned. After awhile I gave up hope and that's when Faith was born."
Turning to Gib, I asked, "So why are you here now?"
Buffy jumped in, "First, how did you know to come here and what do you know about us?"
Gib looked at each of the Scoobies in turn and then began. "Dana, I mean Faith, may not remember, but I am her Godfather. I have always felt a special connection to her, but especially after her parents were lost. Even after she left D.C., I have always kept an eye out for her. When she came to Sunnydale I hoped she was leaving all of her troubles behind and would make a fresh start.
"It wasn't until your run-ins with the Initiative that I found out about slayers and monsters and the existence of real magic. What a shock. Of course, by then Faith had been a coma for many months and then off to prison." Gib shook his head. "You don't know how hard it was to sit by and watch all of those bad things happen and not be able to do anything."
"Anyway, from the Initiative I was able to get dossiers on most of the original 'Scoobies', as you call yourselves. Buffy, Giles, Willow, and Xander." Gib looked at Kennedy. "I am afraid all of my Sunnydale Intel dates from several years ago when the Initiative was disbanded and I have nothing on you or most of the other girls here."
Kennedy smiled. "That's not surprising since most of us have been here only a couple of months."
Gib looked back at me. "I had a tap into the prison's computer system and got a message when you broke out. I had our computer geeks hack into the California Justice Department's computer system shortly after your breakout and remove all of your records. So no one will be looking for you, whether or not you decide to help me. I hope that is all right?"
I nodded. "The prison time was always self-imposed; I could have escaped at any time. I think that time has served its purpose and I don't feel any need to go back."
I paused for a few seconds and then said, "I think it is time to tell us why you are here."
"Six years ago," Gib began. "Word started reaching us about a new and unique weapon being offered on the black market. No details were available except that it involved bioengineering and one name, Alexi Rimnicu. After a lot of digging we found that Rimnicu was based in the small town of Cimpulung deep in the Transylvanian Alps."
"Transylvania?" asked Kennedy. "As in Dracula?"
Gib shrugged, "Well, if you believe in that stuff. Oh right, vampire slayers. I still have trouble getting my head around the whole thing. When we got to Romania on that mission, there was a whole lot of Dracula memorabilia, but at the time it seemed most similar to the 'George Washington slept here' stuff you see all over New England."
"Don't let the tourist industry's whitewashing fool you," said Buffy. "Dracula is real and real scary."
I looked at her and must have had a startled look on my face, as Buffy looked at me and continued, "He was here, in Sunnydale. A couple of years ago during the lull between Adam & the Initiative and the arrival of Glory, maybe six months after you went to prison."
"Dracula was here?" squeaked Kennedy before I had a chance to open my mouth.
"Oh yeah, hypnotic powers and all," said Willow with a glance at Xander. "Xander got to be bug-eating thrall and everything."
"Hey," responded Xander with pretended indignation in his voice. "At least I wasn't playing suck-face with the three vampire sisters like Giles."
"Right," said Giles, as always a little unsettled when he had a moment where he projected less than 'perfect watcher' behavior. "Yes, Dracula exists. Yes, he was in Sunnydale. No, we didn't slay him, but he left. Now I think we better get back to why Gib is here."
"Okay," Gib began again. "Our Intel placed Rimnicu at his place in Cimpulung, an old castle dating originally from the Crusades. As usual, Harry and Helen were the up-front team and were going to infiltrate his organization while I and the backup team set up our main base of operations in Bucharest.
"Rimnicu was about to hold an auction on the product and we had set it up so Harry and Helen appeared to be East German bidders.
"As always seems to be the case with these things, the bad guys held a big, formal party before the start of the auction. With over 30 potential buyers and their entourages, the old castle was really hopping. I was set up in a van near the castle and was in constant radio contact.
"The party had been going on for several hours when the auction finally began. As Harry and Helen headed to the location of the auction, I lost radio contact with them. This was not unexpected as we knew this castle had extensive underground chambers and some kind of demonstration could be expected before the actual auction."
"I didn't expect the whole process to take more than a couple of hours, but when that time limit came and went I started to get concerned. However, they had been through tight spots before without a problem, so it was dawn before I decided to act. Then it took several hours to get some Romanian army units, supported by our commandos, into position.
"When they stormed the castle no signs of Harry or Helen or any of the other buyers or Rimnicu were found. The castle was empty. We spent days going over that castle and the surrounding countryside with a fine tooth comb, but no trace of how they disappeared was ever found," finished Gib.
Giles, who had been sitting with steepled fingers running up and down his nose, said. "Given the locale, I would hazard a guess that some magically means was used to remove everyone. It has been a long time since I have been in Romania. I wish I could remember how far Cimpulung is from the original Hellmouth."
"Original Hellmouth?" blurted out several people simultaneously.
"Quite," said Giles. "You don't think Sunnydale was the first? It is just the one that has been the most active in this century. The original Hellmouth is in the Transylvanian Mountains. It was closed about 350 years ago by the slayer and the Watcher's Council of the time. The Romany have been keeping an eye on it ever since and are suppose to notify the Council at the first sign of any renewed activity."
I happened to glance outside and realized we were about to reach Cambria. In a few minutes we would reach the hospital and I wanted some more information from Gib before we were interrupted.
"Gib, thanks for the info on what happened six years ago, but why did you show up in Sunnydale today?" I asked.
"Two days ago we received a message from the secure backup radio Harry was carrying."
Gib saw my face light up at this news, but he quickly held his hands up in a 'hold your horses' gesture.
"I felt the same way you do when I first saw the message, but there is an anomaly and we aren't certain what it means. The message is definitely from your father, however the radio automatically includes a secure time-stamp on the message and the date on the message is two weeks after their disappearance and not two days ago. Our experts haven't yet been able to come up with an explanation for the difference in dates. So I don't want you getting your hopes too high, as there is no guarantee that your parents are still alive."
I nodded, but it was impossible to turn the hope back off after allowing it back into my soul for the first time in many years.
"I am glad you came to tell me, but I am surprised you didn't mount an immediate rescue operation and why you say you need my help," I answered as I tried to get my thoughts and emotions back under some semblance of control.
"The message was transmitted from a valley about thirty miles west of Rimnicu's castle. We immediately dispatched a team, but all that was found was an old Gypsy woman. She is being brought to D.C. and will be there by this evening.
"The reason I came to find you was that the message included the word 'Demon' twice and the Latin phrase 'in usum Delphini' and a word we haven't been able to translate 'Chentratius'. Now Harry has always been very precise in his radio transmissions. So when he used the word 'demon' I had to take that literally, which immediately brought to mind you and the old documents from the Initiative."
"Giles, Wills," said Buffy. "Any thoughts?"
"Well, the Latin translates as 'for the use of the son of the King' and was at one time used to mean 'purge all records of your predecessors' like the way Communist Russia tried to remove all references to the church and to the Czars," explained Giles.
When he realized everyone was staring at him, he said. "What, just because I have a proper English education that emphasized important things like Latin instead of things like 'new math', I always get that look. How many times has my knowledge of Latin saved the day? Versus how often has 'If Bill is on a train moving east at 27 miles an hour and Jane is on a train moving west at 37 miles an hour, but making an eight minute stop every half hour, how long until they are 53 miles apart?' saved the day?"
"Okay, okay, Giles," said Buffy. "You know we are stuck with the California education system and there is very little we, as students, could do about it. You also know that in my role as guidance counselor I was doing my best to get a Latin teacher back on staff for the first time in 35 years. Now, does 'Chentratius' ringing any bells?"
Giles just nodded to indicate his rant on the American education system was over and then said. "The word sounds vaguely familiar, but I can't quite place it. I sure wish I had my books."
"Willow?" I asked.
She shook her head. "The word doesn't spark anything with me. When I can get to a computer, I will check the net."
"You are welcome to try," said Gib. "But our people have been looking for two days without any results."
I looked over to Giles. "Where would the right books most likely be?"
He sighed. "The First or its people got to my books and most of those belonging to the Council. At this point our best chance is the Wicca group back in England."
Willow nodded. "Their collection is pretty extensive."
"So, it sounds like someone needs to go to England," I stated.
"Right," said Giles. "I think that would be me."
"Ahh," said Willow with a glance towards Kennedy. "I think I should tag along to England also. I am still feeling the effects of all the magic usage in the past few days. I could use a couple of days with the Wicca group to help me get centered again. Besides it looks like the action will be in Romania and England is kinda along the way."
Gib looked at me. "Faith, I would like you to come to D.C. with me. I can get you a position with the 'Omega Force' which will allow this to be a 'sanctioned' operation and will allow full financial backing by the organization. However this situation turns out, you will have the option of leaving afterwards, or if you find you like it, you could stay on."
I sat there momentarily stunned. Had Gib just offered me a job? A job that would actually pay me for what I did best? When I started this long day it seemed unlikely I would live to see the end of it and now I was about to become an agent for some secret government agency. With the Sunnydale Hellmouth gone and slayers activated all over the world, perhaps this was the right time for a change in the direction of my life.
I nodded and said. "Okay, but I want it in writing that I have the option of leaving after this mission."
Gib got this big smile and his shoulders lifted a little like some big weight had been removed.
At this point Kennedy cleared her throat. "Ahh, Gib, I know we just met, but do you think you have room for one more?"
Kennedy looked over to Willow and took her hand. "I know I just got my slayer powers and should take some time to let it sink in, but this feels like the right thing to do. I hope you understand. And I am sure we will meet up again in a few days."
Willow just got this small smile on her face. I could tell it was hard for her as she slowly nodded her head.
Finally, Buffy said. "I need to go to L.A. and let my Dad know Dawn and I are okay. I will see about the injured here first and you can reach me on my pager if or when you need me."
Xander spoke up last saying he wanted to go down to L.A. with Buffy and Dawn. Having lost Spike and Anya during the final battle with 'The First', it was obvious that Buffy and Xander were going to need the most recovery time.
At just that moment the bus arrived at the hospital. After helping to move the seriously injured to stretchers, we shared one final hug and then broke up into three groups heading to England, D.C., and L.A.
End of Chapter 1