* hot of the plate * 1st draft of Chapter 11 of Master of the Forbidden Seals
For chapter 1 – 10, please refer to http://www.tthfanfic.org/Story-16447/wraithrune+Master+of+the+Forbidden+Seals.htm
Book Title: Master of the Forbidden Seals
Summary: One Halloween Night changed everything for Xander. Agreeing to a contract with the Nine-Tailed Fox Demon for power, he unknowingly unleashed great evils to the world… changing everything for the Scooby Gang. Buffy / Naruto / Andromeda / Starwars / Multiple Crossovers
Crossover: Buffy the Vampire Slayer AU crossover
Disclaimer: I do not own any characters, objects or plots from
Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series, Andromeda TV series, Star Wars, Stargate SG-1 TV series, Casper the friendly ghost, Captain Planet and the Planeteers, Ghostbusters, Final Fantasy VII, Final Fantasy VI (Final Fantasy III in North America), X-Men, Primeval TV series, Final Fantasy X-2, Highlander, Smallville TV series, Star Ocean Video Game series, Gundam Manga and Anime series, Xenosaga Video Game series, Naruto Manga and Anime series, Dungeons and Dragons, Carebears, Pinky and the Brain, Star Trek, Gurps, One Piece Manga
Chapter 11: Unexpected Arrivals
“Rampancy… a terminal state of being for Artificial Intelligence constructs in my world. The AI “develops delusions of godlike power”, as well as utter contempt for its mentally inferior makers. In short, they go crazy… Once rampancy occurs, there is no known way to restore the AI to its previous state and the only alternative is to destroy it before it harms itself and others around it…”
“Maybe that is the AI technological limit of your world… but we’ve AIs from at least two different universes right here… I am sure there’s a way… we can help one another…”
~ Secret conversation, between Rommie and Cortana
The first thing that Anakin did when he was released from the energy prison was to quickly crotch into a defensive position, his light saber activated in his hands. The next thing was to quickly take stock of his situation. He was therefore a bit surprised when instead of a group of armed guards greeting him, he was instead surrounded on all sides by a group of teenagers and adults who were backing away from him in shock. It took a moment for him to realize he had seen this same group before… in his Force vision.
“Oh shit!” The exclamation from the boy on the floor in front of him caught his attention. The boy in question was crawling backwards, trying to get some space between them.
“It’s Darth Vader!” Came another exclamation to the side. Those three words seemed to spur the strange group into action because bolts of lightning, fire and even water began hovering above the hands of some of the members who began to look threateningly towards him.
“What is going on here?” Rogue’s exasperated voice cried out, cutting into the tension that suddenly filled the room. “Are all of you mutants? We just escaped this strange prison, we don’t want to fight any of you!”
“Prison?” The boy on the floor in front of Anakin slowly got up, looking wearily at Anakin all the while. “Okay… just what is going on here? You mean you actually got Darth Vader to work with you to get out of the Halloween dimension?”
“I don’t know what Halloween dimension you are talking about.” Anakin said, turning off his light saber. Perhaps it was intuition, or the Force, but Anakin suspected he had nothing to fear from this group of humans who seemingly wield strange abilities. “But I am not Darth Vader. That was one of my unpleasant past that I have long let go. I am Anakin Skywalker, once a Force ghost… but it seems now I am mortal again.”
“Anakin Skywalker?” A look of relief flickered across the boy’s face before he let out a sigh, his tensed shoulders relaxing. “That… was unexpected, I thought I’ll have to face down a Sith Lord.”
Within his helmet, Anakin gave a frown. “How do you know of my history? Who are you? And where is this place?”
“I guess I really should explain… especially since you guys are now out in the real world.” The boy said with a weary look in his eyes. “I am Xander. I… I am the cause of why you guys are here today. But first let’s move this discussion to the couch, I am sure it isn’t comfortable standing in the wreckage of the table…”
Oliver Queen, code name Green Arrow, was not sure what to think after he had listened to the boy, Xander, and his group explained what had actually happened to them. In a reality where magic and demons were real, a mage had cast a spell on Halloween night that was the focal point of what had happened. Xander Harris had made a deal with a nine-tailed fox demon which had the accidental effect of turning a lot of Halloween objects and costumes real. Oliver and the others were considered part of the accidental side effect.
Xander had thought to keep everyone and everything in stasis until the group had built enough facilities to support the Halloween characters turned real. The boy had then rushed on to explain that now that Oliver and the others were out in the real world, the group would do their best to support them. After all, what happened was partially Xander’s fault. Oliver and the others could choose to make a new life for themselves in this world or help out with the group’s activities. In the meantime Xander would promise to research and find a way to see if he could return them to their home reality if they wished it.
It was too much to take in. The only saving grace Oliver had right now was that he did not really had anyone waiting for him back home. His parents were both killed and he had never really made the effort to form any permanent attachments. His time back in his reality was mostly spent managing Queen industry, a multimillion business in itself, and also taking on the persona of Green Arrow to right wrongs done in the world. A vigilante, very much like what Xander had described his group to be.
Currently, Xander and the others had allowed the escapees from the Halloween dimension to have sometime to really absorb what had really happened. They had the whole couch area to themselves, though the green armored Master Chief and Anakin had remained standing, most probably due to their refusal to shed their armor.
“I can’t believe it.” Wolverine cursed with a growl. “They plucked us from our realities and dumped us in another.”
“If we are to go strictly by what the boy Xander had said, we’re actually inanimate objects turned real, given life.” Oliver pointed out, his mind keeping a tight rein on his current dark emotions. “The important thing is, what do we do now?”
“I…” Rogue began but quickly fell silent, her eyes were downcast. “If what Xander said is true, that he will support us in this world… I want to start a new life here. There’s no mutants in this reality, no hatred for mutants. No discrimination… I can start a new life here.”
“I suppose if you look at it that way it might be a good thing for those of us with no one waiting for us back home.” Wolverine said gruffly. He turned to look at Anakin and Master Chief. “Well? The three of us have voiced our opinions. What about you two tin cans?”
“The name is Anakin.” Anakin Skywalker said calmly, looking at Wolverine, his helmet tucked to the side of his arm. “As for our new situation… I will prefer to wait and see. For the immediate time being, it seemed the group have no way to return us back to our home realities. That means whatever choices we make, we still have to remain in this reality. If that is the case, I’ll say to take up on their offers of making a new life here for the current time being. As to whether to help the group… I must say I am interested in seeing more of this magic and the demons they are talking about.”
“It is as Anakin say, the prudent thing will be to wait and see.” Master Chief replied in a gravelly voice beside Anakin. “In fact, it might be best if we stick together in this world… in case things did not work out with Xander’s group.”
Oliver nodded his head, understanding Master Chief’s reasoning. In this reality, the only people they could truly trust were those that they had escaped together with.
“Then let’s take them up on their offer of starting a new life here. I also want to get a chance to look at the economic situation in this alternate Earth.” Oliver said looking at the others. “I am a businessman, and I may be able to ensure that we live comfortably in this world. That is provided the funds they give us are sufficient.”
“Good. Then the five of us will watch each other’s back.” Wolverine said, clasping Oliver on the shoulder heartily. “It’s time we talk to them and see what they have to say.”
Stepping into his living room, Mayor Wilkins stared crossly at the pile of vampire dust on his carpet.
“Oh dear… And they make such a mess too. I’ll have to send the whole carpet for dry cleaning just to get the dust out.” Mayor Wilkins said with a frown.
“I wonder who would have the nerve to break into my place.” Mayor Wilkins gave a shrug as he turned and make his way towards the stairs to the second floor. “Well a Ritual of the Twilight Shadows should be enough to reveal the invaders. I’ll just have to get some blood from a virgin cow, wait until midnight, and order up some more protection…”
Mayor Wilkins never noticed the cloaked starship following him as he took out his cell phone and placed a call.
“Ah Finch, I have some work I need you to do…” Mayor Wilkins said as he went into his spell room to prepare the ingredients he would need for the ritual tonight. Once that was done, he would know who had intruded upon his home.
“For the time being, the five of you will have to make your home here.” Giles said apologetically as he addressed the group consisting of Anakin Skywalker, Wolverine, Oliver Queen, Rogue, and the armored man that they called Master Chief. “We’ve begin ordering the necessary furniture and building the living quarters for all of you, but all these will take time. Just make yourself at home in the meantime.”
“And on these printed sheets are the bank statements for all five of you.” Xander said, handing the group a sheet of paper with their name each. “Harper, our A.I. has hacked into the State system to create new identities for all of you. You’ll receive your new identities within the week. He has also created electronic bank accounts for each of you, diverting funds from the company accounts. We’ve given you seven thousands to start each of you off in this world, and will fund you on a monthly basis.”
“I have no idea of the financial circumstances of this world, but in my reality what you’re giving us can be considered a significant amount, especially when the sum is totaled up.” Oliver said raising an eyebrow.
“We… are able to provide sufficiently for the group’s needs.” Xander said with a grin at Oliver Queen. “Don’t worry about where the money come from. We shall be able to live comfortably in the meantime, until the company became self sufficient to support all of us.”
“Take these few days to get used to life in this… new world. The computers here are for your usage as well.” Giles said, waving a hand towards the computers set up in the corner of the hangar. “Rommie and one of us will be here at all times so if you have any trouble or needs, you can approach us. The girls have all went to town to gather the necessary supplies for your stay here tonight. There’s unfortunately currently only one washroom in the company base. It’s located at the end of this hangar to be exact. I am afraid for the time being you’ll have to share the facilities.”
“I am sure we can rough it out for the time being.” Wolverine said as he interrupted Giles. “But I want to state something. I am not a freeloader. I will rather not keep taking money from you. Once I find a way to support myself…”
“Ah yes I am getting to that.” Giles said giving Xander a look. “As Xander has explained to you. We’ve just set up Andromeda Inc. and such will be needing a lot of manpower to handle the operations of the company. We will actually like to hire each of you as employees of the company. There are currently four departments in the company, though after some discussions we’ve added a fifth department. The Alpha department handles all Future technologies which we are going to build for our group’s usage. Currently members are Rommie and Andrew. We’ll also like to hire Anakin as part of the group handling all future tech.”
“I am agreeable to it.” Anakin said with a nod of agreement. “It is something to spend my time with anyway.”
“That’s good to hear. Then there is the Beta department which handles technologies we are building and selling to the world, as well as the Gamma department which handles any entertainment and fashion media we’re producing. These two departments are the “front” of the company so to speak, what the world will see us as. We are aware Mr Queen that you handle a multimillion business back in your reality.” Giles said looking at Oliver Queen, aka Green Arrow. “We’re actually like to hire you on as a CEO to handle the business building prospect of the company. I am afraid none of the current group has the necessary skills in this area.”
“That should not be a problem.” Oliver said with a glint in his eyes. “As Wolverine and Anakin has pointed out, I’ll rather work for my pay. And it will be interesting seeing what products you’re… offering to your world.”
“Ah yes, we’re currently in the process of identifying our core marketing areas.” Giles said as he turned to look at Rogue. “We’re going to need more people to help us in identifying those products, so… Rogue, do you wish to take part in working under the Gamma branch?”
“I’ll do what I can to help.” Rogue said with a nod.
“The last two branches are Delta branch, a pure research branch to support the group only, as well as the Epsilon branch, a newly created branch which will handle security in the company base itself.” Giles said looking at Master Chief and Wolverine. “The servers in the company base contains a lot of technologies not found in this world, as such this base will need protection. Angel will be heading this new branch, and we will like to hire you, Master Chief and Wolverine as the branch’s security experts.”
“That’s acceptable.” Wolverine said with a grunt. “So when do we start?”
“Anytime you wish actually. Though it may be best for you to get used to this new reality first.” Giles advised. “In the meantime, all five of you are welcomed to join our group meetings. Currently we have a few things on our plate that we… need to settle.”
“You are telling me that magic and demons are real? That the US army has a unit devoted to studying these… sub-terrestrials?” Jack asked incredulously as he looked at the annoyed stare of one Captain Jones.
“Yes.” Captain Jones gritted out. “If you have followed my instructions and avoided Sunnydale, you will not have become involved in this! I don’t even know why the higher ups decide that you will be given the clearance to know all of this.”
“To know this huge cover up you mean!” Jack said angrily. “If what you are saying is true, why do so many people have no knowledge of this? I am pretty sure bodies drained of blood isn’t something the police around the world can overlook!”
“The supernatural community, the magic users and sub-terrestrials tend to avoid human communities as a whole. Only very few subset of the sub-terrestrials hunt humans, and most tends to converge at places of high mystical convergence. Like Sunnydale. Which if information provided by the Watcher’s Council is to be believed, is a Hellmouth, gateway to one of the many hell dimensions.” Captain Jones said shortly, apparently disgruntled that he was the one providing disclosure of the supernatural to the group before him.
“But what is this magic you are talking about?” Carter inquired, a frown on her forehead as her scientific mind screamed outrage that Captain Jones actually believed what he said. “Have you ever seen any of this magic in action?”
“The kids we met, they did say what they could do is magic.” Jack offered up reluctantly, deepening Carter’s scowl.
“We’ll need to conduct more tests on this magic. There must be some scientific reasoning to all of this. Perhaps these magic users are born with the capacity to manipulate energy…” Carter began but was quickly cut off by Captain Jones.
“You will do no such thing.” Captain Jones said sternly. “The higher ups may want me to give you disclosure on the sub-terrestrials, but they also want me to pack all of you back to your base once the disclosure is concluded. The military arm in charge of the sub-terrestrials will be taking over this case after this.”
“But we’ve told you about Mayor Wilkins…” Daniel began in protest but was cut down by Captain Jones.
“I’ve seen your evidence regarding Mayor Wilkins.” Captain Jones said shortly. “Apparently he was not the docile white magic user the higher ups thought he is. He will be dealt with, but not by you four. The magic users that rescued you from Mayor Wilkins’ mansion will also be closely monitored. Orders from the president are that once disclosure has been completed, you’ll be taking the first flight out to Colorado. Enjoy your stay in the base in the meantime.”
Captain Jones gathered up the documents he had shown SG-1 during the disclosure before walking quickly out of the room.
“O’Neill, what should we do?” Teal’c spoke up in the silence.
“What can we do?” Jack said in disgust, slamming his hand on the table. “They dropped this bombshell on us and tell us not to get involve.”
“Strangely after knowing about the Stargate, it’s not as earth shattering.” Daniel mused tiredly. “I guess this fight against the sub-terrestrials just isn’t for us.”
“Maybe.” Jack said with a glint in his eyes, a grim smile on his face. “Maybe…”
Jenny Calendar gave a satisfied sigh as she looked at the temporarily living quarters the group had set up in the corner of the main hangar. Shortly of the the arrival of the five new comers, she and the girls had packed up in her car to return back to town to do some necessary purchases. It had taken her a lot of money to ensure that the furniture shops pull through with their last minute delivery of beds, drawers, cupboards and shelves for the five new arrivals. Careful arrangement of the tall shelves and drawers had divided up the living quarters, giving some semblance of privacy.
Cordelia’s keen eye had also ensured that the pile of clothes they bought for each of the five arrivals managed to fit all of them. She had been quite surprised when Master Chief had stepped out of his armor to reveal a decent looking and handsome man, whose only abnormality was his skin color which was a deathly white.
Oven, kettles, portable fridge and heat pads for cooking had been installed in the pantry turned kitchen area. A large assortment of utensils and food had been bought and stored in the fridge and cupboards. All in all, the main hangar was self sufficient enough to act as a temporarily living quarter for the time being.
The whole shifting, arranging and setting up of the quarters had taken hours. By the time they were done, it was already nearing midnight. Jenny herself was feeling a bit weary, but one look at the excited and energetic faces of the teenagers showed that they were still running on adrenaline from the excitement of meeting the new arrivals.
“Xander and the others have suggested a sleepover here tonight.” Giles said softly as he walked up to Jenny. “Buffy and the others have already called back home to inform their parents. I guess this is a good time as any to continue discussing what happened in the morning.”
Jenny nodded, so many things had happened that their discovery of Stargate Command had seemed like something that had happened a long time ago.
“Well, luckily the long table I’ve ordered is already delivered.” Jenny said as she made a move to where the new table was situated. “I’ll get the girls to prepare snacks and drinks, we’ve a lot of planning to do.”
“… as I was saying about Leia, she had finished the production of three squadrons, each consisting of five Starspies.” Rommie said, with the whole group, including Anakin and the new arrivals sitting at the long table listening to her. “With our new knowledge regarding Stargate Command, it is best to send one squadron of the Starspies to Stargate Command to monitor their going-ons. The journey by hyperdrives to reach their destination will take about a day so it’s best for us to decide on this soon and send them on their way.”
“That’s a sound suggestion, we do need to know what is happening within that place.” Giles said with a nod. “Especially if there are any impending alien invasions.”
“What about the other two squadrons? Can we send one to Dawn first?” Buffy spoke up, looking at Rommie sharply. “I’ll feel much safer if Dawn is being looked after.”
“That will be our first priority.” Rommie said with a nod. “The last squadron will be sent to replace Gaia in watching Mayor Wilkins. Leia can churn out another four squadrons of Starspies by nightfall tomorrow, so within one more day, we’ll be able to have Starspies covering Sunnydale. After that, she’ll be able to work on constructing a new and smaller World Devastator which will be used purely for Starspies construction.”
“Good, if there are no objections let’s proceed with Rommie’s suggestion.” Giles said looking around the table.
“I’ve send the commands to the three squadrons of Starspies. They have exited Leia and are on their way to each of their targets. Gaia will be returning to base once the squad of Starspies assigned to Mayor Wilkins replace her.” Rommie reported after a short pause of silence. “Now that the monitoring of the Starspies are decided, we’ll need to prepare for eventual investigation by Stargate Command and even the government into our group.”
“Our connections with the Watcher’s Council will probably deter them some what. Especially since the Council are well known for their dealings in the supernatural.” Giles spoke up as he began polishing his glasses. “Several of you have already been ousted as magic users to the SG-1 group from Stargate Command. I presume that the details will be listed in their reports. We can… deal with that by keeping up the deception. But just in case we ended up being investigated, for the time being, it is prudent to hide whatever advanced weaponry we have. Only magic or attacks that seems like magic will be used during patrols.”
“I agree. That means no ray guns or strange mutant powers we can’t explain away as magic.” Ms Calendar spoke up from her position beside Giles. “We don’t want the government to find out about the technologies we really have.”
“That probably means I should use Wolverine’s claws less often.” Xander muttered, giving a groan.
“Andromeda is currently running through several worse case scenarios should anything happen.” Rommie said. “A portion of our current funds has been transferred to a secure account which will not be linked to us. I am proposing that we also set up several safe houses in case we really have to end up fleeing from the government.”
“Surely it wouldn’t be that bad?” Buffy protested weakly at the thought that they might be forced to run.
“There’s no way of knowing what the government will do once they know some of us are ‘magic users’” Rommie pointed out. “It is best to prepare for the worse then to have no way out when the worst happens.”
“Setting up safe houses will take up a lot of effort.” Giles said as he considered the suggestion. “But you’re right in being prepared. With our increased man power now, we can also share the burden of setting up those safe houses. I’ll organize a team after this to deal with it. In the meantime, let’s discuss company matters, it is time to make our first foray into the local market. I believe Cordelia has already narrowed down some clothing designs, while Jonathon and Andrew have selected some prospective games…”
Surrounded by his newly hired vampire minions, Mayor Wilkins stood in the center of his living room as he began the ritual which would reveal to him those that had intruded in his home during the day. Dark power poured through him as he poured blood from a virgin cow into the pile of vampire ash he had gathered before him. The ashes transmuted into orbs of dark gray light. Before Mayor Wilkin’s eyes, the orbs of gray light floated towards the kitchen, to reveal shadowy images of his ex-vampire minions walking out of their home in the cellar.
Mayor Wilkin stayed silent as he began to trail after the shadowy figures of his deceased vampire minions as they went up to the second level of his mansion, to came upon two unknown men creeping around the upper level rooms.
A fight began, the two men seemingly not knowing that their enemies were vampires. Instead of dusting the vampires, they tried to knock the vampires out… an action that proved unsuccessful. The two men were on the verge of death when several newcomers appeared. Mayor Wilkins snarled as he recognized the Slayer and one of her male tag alongs dust his vampire minions with some strange form of magic. Several others that Mayor Wilkins did not recognized also appeared, all of them wielding some strange form of magical abilities.
By the time the time the revelation spell ended when the group teleported away, Mayor Wilkins’ eyes had flared up with a coldly calculative look. It seemed that the Slayer and her group were no longer the small nuisances that he had first thought they were. Somehow within the past few weeks, they had grown more powerful and had found a bunch of magically competent allies, becoming a force to be reckoned with.
There was also the troubling matter of who the two unknown men, that his vampire minions had first found were. From the way he had seen those two men interact with the Slayer group at the end, it had seemed that they belonged to a separate group. And the way the two men had crept around his rooms, it seemed that they were trying to find information on him. A troubling matter since he had no idea which group those two men belonged to, especially since the time of his Ascension was nearing within the year.
Mayor Wilkins’ mouth straightened into a thin line. It seemed he would have to remain careful and alert in the coming weeks ahead, and probably made a few plans to distract the Slayer group’s attention away from him.
“This is a totally unbelievable group and situation we’ve found ourselves in. Wouldn’t you agree?” A lithe feminine voice said softly through the speakers of his helmet.
“What have you found?” John asked, keeping his voice low. He had retreated into the area set up for him by Jenny Calendar and the others not long after the group’s meeting had ended. After at last deciding that it was unlikely the group would meant him harm, he had carefully unstrap his armor which he placed within easy reach of his bed. The helmet containing Cortana’s Smart A.I. chip rested in his hands.
“I managed to access the internet of this world, that Giles and the others talked about.” Cortana revealed in an apologetic voice. “The group knows of my presence, or at the very least, the A.I. Harper, who is guarding the group’s servers know of me. He allowed me unrestricted access to the internet. John, Harper is a synthetic A.I., at least as advanced as me in certain aspects. What Xander said about us being fictional characters were also true. There’s information on the web about some Halo game that is in production, with us briefly listed as the main characters.”
John shook his head in disbelief. He had fought the Covenant and the Flood. He had stopped the Halo from firing and destroying all living beings in his universe. He had saved Earth, and had accepted his possible death when the ship carrying him back to Earth was sheared in half in a slipstream accident.
Then he had appeared here, in this reality with Cortana, where he discovered that he was a fictional character in this reality who was brought to life through magic. It was mind bending. It was also too impossible to just accept without further proof. Thus he had Cortana do some discreet searching. Only apparently it was not discreet enough.
“I’ve also located the fictional universes of Anakin Skywalker, Rogue, Green Arrow who’s name is actually Olive Queen, and Wolverine. They are all fictional characters from movies and comics.” Cortana said in a voice heavy with disbelief. “I’ve even gathered information about the android Rommie who actually came from the Andromeda TV show in this reality. John… I have a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore. The crucial factor here is this ‘magic’ that this group talk about. We need to find out more about this ‘magic’ and try to understand it. I have a feeling it is going to be very important to us.”
“Mr Rupert did mention that the majority of their supernatural library are in this hangar.” John said with a nod, he knew Cortana would be able to ‘see’ him through the helmet’s sensor. “I’ll take a look through the books when I have the opportunity.”
“Books, real paper books.” Cortana said with a hint of dry humor. “Even back in our world, they were rare luxury items to the rich.”
“We’re not exactly in our world now…” John paused as his sharp hearing picked up the sounds of footsteps nearing his location. Cortana fell silent as she sensed the tension in John. Within moments, Rommie walked in, circling past the cupboards that acted as walls for his small living quarter.
John held the android’s eyes as the two of them stared at each other in a measuring manner. Then Rommie smiled, walking forward to John.
“If you do not mind my intrusion, I will like to have a word with you John-117… and Cortana.” Rommie said, as she turned her eyes away from John to look at the helmet in his hands. “It will be nice… to talk to another sister in spirit.”