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Jun 17, 2021 1:28 PM
in which kelsey's brain continues to want to throw a sad spike at things and bard is very accommodating

"Look," he begins, "not that I expect I'd find this convincing in your position, but -" and then the ground shimmers under them and half a second after that it's not there at all.

They fall. 

The ground they hit instead is cold and muddy. The stars are exceptionally bright, and close overhead. 

" - what?" says Ryan. 

Alex doesn't answer him. Alex is looking out into the darkness, horrified.

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Well. He could probably kill the guy now, but that seems like maybe not actually the best possible call. He picks up Drusilla, who's still unconscious.

"What the fuck did you do now?"


"What did do? That wasn't you?"



"'Course it wasn't me, you think if I could teleport places I wouldn't have done it long before this?"


"Not to here, you wouldn't have." 



Spike looks around.

" - all right, I'm gonna kill you, but after I figure out what the hell is going on. Dru, pet, wake up."


Drusilla whimpers slightly, but doesn't wake.


           "Mr. Johnson, where are we?"

"Him having just expressed the intent to kill me once he knows what's going on -"

           Right, okay. Where are we. - am I doing this right -

Enemy territory in a war thirty-four thousand years ago. 

           Oh.  - so they'll actually be entirely welcome?

I'm not sure. Depends who we run into. I don't want them meeting the Enemy. If you see an opening to kill them definitely take it. 

           Where's the - friendly side of the war?

A thousand miles from here. There's a less-hostile side of the war, like, a hundred miles from here, though, we're gonna go for that. 


Spike keeps looking around until he's pretty sure this is not going to make him any less confused.



"We're gonna need to find shelter, if it isn't always night here."


"Could go either way, honestly. I ....think there's gonna be a sunrise, but I'll know for sure in two hours. We don't want to wait that long, though, there's not gonna be cover here." He points. "That way."


Spike sighs heavily and follows.


"Faster than that, ideally."


"Well maybe if someone hadn't left me injured and Dru full of holes," he says, but he picks up the pace as much as he can given these things.


"I apologize. It seemed important at the time."

       "Johnson, what -"

"They can't hurt anyone here. If I'd known they were coming here I really wouldn't have bothered."

        "Seems like they could hurt us."

"Buddy I hate to break this to you but we are almost definitely going to die horribly in the next couple of hours even assuming he does nothing at all."


Spike doesn't seem any more concerned about this than he was before. He occasionally checks whether Dru's ready to wake up, but mostly he focuses on moving forward.


They keep walking. The ground is muddy and not obviously evil in any way.

"Probably pushing my luck here but I can carry her if you want."



"No," he says, but it doesn't sound very venomous at all. "I got her."


"What's gonna kill us?" Ryan asks out loud and also over osanwë in case the answers are different.

         "So, it happens that around this time period my folks were having a war. Actually, two at the same time - we were having a civil war, and then we were also having a war with this other species of demons. They started it, they kept dragging us back to their cities to torture for thousands of years in this magical time-dilation setup and also they tried to conquer the continent and also they had their own entire population under magically-enforced loyalty oaths and also they want to purge the universe of everything except themselves and - we were super definitely the good guys in that war. 

       By contrast in the civil war we were the bad guys and I'm not super confident how well it'll go over when I show up at their doorstep. But I think they probably won't kill me at least until they communicate to my people that they have me and get told 'uh, no you don't', at which point if I were them I'd kill me, but we'll see."

        The osanwë version of this is less confident that getting captured right now would be bad for Spike and Drusilla in the slightest.


"Oh, goody, politics and omnicide," mutters Spike. "Never should have come to this damn town."


        "You're - thirty-something thousand years old?"

"I mean, I spent a lot of it dead."

        "Ah. Okay. But you're - alive in this time period?"

"There's about a - fifty year range of times it could be right now, going off the landmarks I can see and can't see. I'm alive in all of them."

        "I can't see a thing."

"Yes, my vision is much better than yours. There'd be a fortress over there, if it were later." He gestures out into the dark. "And there'd be people in this area if it were earlier. They've all been killed."

        "What was the civil war over? - is it unwise to be talking out loud?"

"I mean, don't shout, but if there're patrols out tonight at all we're dead, we're not gonna just walk right past 'em. My vision's better than their hearing, I'll know it's over before they do, if it is. The civil war was over who got to be King, isn't that always what civil wars are over?"

         "Who won?"

"They did."

          "But not yet?"

"No, right now we're in the part where everyone's losing."


Spike listens, but doesn't offer much in the way of commentary.


After about an hour they reach a mountain. Alex starts climbing it. "There's a cave system here somewhere. There'll be orcs living in it, but not ones that report to anyone, I don't think. Best shot here is to kill them all and then sit there all day and then do the same thing four more times for the next four nights and then turn ourselves in to my enemies."

        "- I can't say I love that plan."

"If you want me to kill you instead I will. If your boss Matt were here he'd have killed everyone else and then himself and he'd be pissed I'm not doing the same thing."

       "Calm down, I didn't say no. But - we're just.... killing a bunch of random cave-dwelling whatever-you-called-them who are uninvolved with the war?"

"Yeah. - you know, it's funny, first time round that didn't even strike me as sketchy. They were orcs."

       "...civilian orcs, though."

"Yep. Like I said, this time around, it's funny, it feels very different. I'm still going to do it. You don't have to help. - you probably have to help, Spikey, I can't take them all myself unarmed."


"Yeah, I'm with you. Gotta leave Dru somewhere."


"We can check for somewhere when we're closer. I don't actually know where it is but I'll be able to sense them when we get close enough."




"Gonna revise my plan to killing you when we get home, by the way."


"Shoulda been your plan from the start, I've got no issues with people who come after me."

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