The Case of the Immortal Menace
A Shirley Holmes / Buffy Crossover

by Boo Rogue Amazon
February 20, 2000         14,100 words


Legal Disclaimer: The characters in Buffy the Vampire Slayer do not belong to me, they belong to Joss Whendon and the WB network. The characters and back-story of the Adventures of Shirley Holmes also do not belong to me but to Credo Entertainment. This is a not for profit work of fan fiction. Also the character to be named later, also does not belong to me, he is the brainchild of late great Sir Arthur Conan Dolye. The creator of Sherlock Holmes.

Personal Disclaimer: I want to take this opportunity to say how much I love mysteries and detective novels. When I was a kid my favorite detectives were Encyclopedia Brown, Nancy Drew, and Trixie Beldon. As I grew older I graduated to Miss Marple, Hercule Poirot, Perry Mason, Jessica Fletcher, and, of course, Sherlock Holmes. It is this spirit of intrigue that has inspired me to write this crossover story between The Adventures of Shirley Holmes, which in my opinion is one of the best children's detective series on television today, and my favorite butt-kicking Slayer. This story will take place between the third and forth seasons of BtVS, since I don't want to spoil fourth season for any of the international fans of the show, and before Shirley had found her mom. Also I thrive on feedback so you can e-mail your comments to (BOOSG1@aol.com). Copyright February 2000 by Boo

Characters from BtVS

Buffy Summers (The Vampire Slayer)
Willow Rosenburg (Amateur Witch)
Xander Harris (Friend and Scooby Gang Goofball)
Rupert Giles (Former Watcher)


Characters from the Adventures of Shirley Holmes

Shirley Holmes (Great Grand-niece of Sherlock Holmes)
Boris (Bo) Sawchuk (Shirley's friend: Her Watson of sorts)
Robert Holmes (Shirley's English Diplomat Father)
Peggy Holmes (Shirley's Grandmother)


The Case of the Immortal Menace: Part 1

Dark ominous clouds gathered over the town of Sunnydale, California and at the stroke of midnight the sky burst forth pouring rain down upon the sleepy ocean side town. A large black limousine screeched to a stop, it's headlights illuminating the burned out shell that had once been the Sunnydale High School library. The harsh yellow light glinted off of the rain giving the place an eerie feel. The driver of the limousine got out, pulled his trench coat around him tighter, and adjusted his chauffeurs cap to keep the rain off. He walked around to the side of the limo opened an umbrella with one hand and with the other opened the back door. A man in a stylish trench coat stepped from the back. His polished Italian leather shoes and charcoal gray armani suit were at odds with the sinister look in his dead black eyes. The chauffeur held the umbrella over the mans head keeping the rain off as he walked toward the burned out building. The mysterious gentleman walked right into the center of what was left of the library and cast his eyes upward, a smile of pleasure curling his full lips.

"The Hellmouth, at last," he said into the night. "Soon my dear Holmes, soon."

The morning dawned cool and bright after the storm last night, and Buffy Summers wanted to be anywhere else but the airport. Her full lower lip drawn into a frown, the beautiful blond haired blue-eyed vampire Slayer turned toward her former Watcher Rupert Giles with a petulant expression upon her face.

"Giles remind me again why I am here, at seven o' clock in the morning, instead of sleeping in with the rest of the slackers."

Giles just sighed, and removed his glasses to clean them. It was a behavior he engaged in when he was annoyed or thinking. This time it was the former notion that had driven him to the habit. "Buffy I told you. I am meeting an old school chum from my days at Cambridge and I thought it might be nice for you to meet him."

"Why, are you afraid he might turn out like the last 'old friend' I met." The young Slayer was; of course, referring to Ethan Ryane, a man from Giles' wayward past that had caused no end of trouble for the Slayer and her assorted Slayerettes. Giles just sighed as Buffy grinned, and he pinched the bridge of his nose in exasperation.

"Buffy, you didn't have to come," Giles said pointedly. The Slayer just shrugged her shoulders and replied, "I know Giles, and I promise not say another word about the ungodly hour you dragged me out of bed at, if you tell me the real reason you wanted me here." Buffy had a smirk on her face as she lifted her chin to her watcher, a glint of expectation in her blue eyes.

"Oh all right," the former watcher replied in his clipped British accent, "Robert is bringing his daughter with him and as you know I really am no good at all with children."

"And you thought I would be," Buffy said incredulously.

"Well I figured you would be a sight better with them then I would," Giles said, while placing his glasses back on his face.

"Giles, what would I know about kids, I mean yeah I babysat a little when I was younger, but since then I have been a little busy. You know with the whole Chosen One thing," she said sarcastically. "And wait you just said them, that implies more than one."

"There will be two of them actually, Shirley will be bringing along a friend of hers," Giles remarked.

"How old are these kids?" Buffy asked.

"They are around twelve or thirteen, I am really not sure which," he replied. Buffy just groaned giving her former Watcher a longsuffering look. "What am I suppose to do with a couple of pre-teens, Giles. I'm eighteen years old for crying out loud."

"I'm not asking you to take them to parties and get them smash, I am just asking you to entertain them for the ride to the embassy." The former Watcher ground out. He was at the end of his patience. Buffy shrugged her shoulders and shot the Englishman one more glare before returning her gaze to the arrival gate. The Slayer couldn't help but think that she should be shopping or doing something beach-like on a day like this. It was after all her last summer before she started college. Still after all Giles had done for her she figured she could at least do him this little favor. Buffy was cut off from her musings when the gate that her and Giles were waiting at burst open. A family of four came down the disembarking ramp first and Buffy knew at first glance that this had to be Robert Holmes and company. Do all British guys have to look stuffy; Buffy mused silently to herself.

"Hey Giles that must be your friend," she said to her former watcher with a wicked grin. Giles looked up expectantly and smiled when he saw Robert.

"Yes indeed it is," Giles replied, "How did you know?"

Buffy shrugged. "Simple, he is the only one that has come out so far that looks like a carbon copy of you. All he needs is the tea to complete the picture."

Giles was not amused and shot his former charge a glare. Buffy just smiled back. She loved teasing Giles; it was her second favorite past time. Her favorite past time had been kissing Angel. Buffy frowned at that thought, and tied to ignore the intense emotional pain thoughts of her ex brought with them. Angel had been right she told herself forcefully, she was the Slayer, he was a vampire, and no matter how much they had loved each other it would have never worked. Ignoring her now Giles shouted out to the familiar man.

"ROBERT" Buffy watched as the dark haired brown-eyed man turned toward Giles, waved, and started to walk toward them. The Slayer took this opportunity to study him and the people with him further. He was rather tall she noted, his hair receding a little, with very aquiline features. There was an older woman with him with graying blond hair and blue eyes. Buffy guessed her age to be around fifty-four or five. In actuality the woman was closer to seventy, exercise and good living having kept her young. The next two people to capture her attention were the children. It was the boy first, around twelve Buffy guessed with dark blond hair and blue eyes. Nothing very remarkable about him except that he had the look of an athlete. It was the girl however that eventually captured Buffy's noticed. She was pretty; around twelve years old, with long brown hair and blue eyes. For some reason the Slayer's sixth sense had started acting up, but not in the supernatural way. This girl just seemed different from most children, but Buffy couldn't quite put her finger on why. It didn't take long for the Slayer to notice that as intently as she was studying the girl; the girl was, just as intently studying her right back. There was a keen intelligence behind those unassuming eyes, a deep ingrained curiosity. Buffy had to admit that it was a rather disconcerting gaze to find on the face of a twelve-year-old.

"Rupert, it is so good to see you," Robert Holmes greeted on a friendly note.

"The same goes for you Robert, how has government life been treating you?" Giles queried.

"Oh not bad, a bit boring at times, but what about you. I heard about that dreadful business of the High School burning down." Robert shot his old friend a sympathetic look, while Buffy threw a sharp surprised glance at Giles. It still seemed to surprise the Slayer whenever she was presented with evidence that Giles had a life outside of Vampires, Demons, and the realm of the supernatural. When he had mentioned an old friend coming to town Buffy had automatically assumed it was someone he hadn't spoken to in a while. Obviously that was not the case and this forced the Slayer to reevaluate the situation. At the same time a strange expression had crossed over the young girl's face, like she was digesting the fact that Buffy was surprised.

"Yes that was bad business that," Giles replied, "Gangs you know, Americans." The former watchers face had taken on that distinctly pompous British look it sometimes got and Buffy had to resist the urge to smack him. Especially since he knew exactly how the school had been destroyed. It was his connections that had gotten them the explosives to send the mayor back into oblivion were he belonged.

"Robert, I would like you to meet Buffy Summers, she was one of my students," Giles said by way of introduction. Robert smiled at the Slayer.

Shirley in the meantime continued to study the blond girl, who she could now put a name to. She had to admit that she was surprised to hear Mr. Giles introduce her as one of his students. He and Buffy acted like father and daughter. It was just another inconsistency to add to her growing list of inconsistencies. The junior detective had to admit she was fascinated. With her skills of observation she could usually peg people right of the bat, the exception had been Molly Hardy, but Buffy was not what she appeared to be at first glance. Shirley was shaken out of her musings by the sound of her father's voice.

"It is a pleasure to meet you Buffy and may I introduce to you my mother Peggy," the ambassador said motioning to the older lady. "My daughter Shirley and her friend Boris Sawchuk." Robert placed his hands on the children's shoulders and the boy (Boris) made a face.

"Just call me Bo," he said addressing the comment to Buffy. The Slayer smiled at him causing Bo to blush. The boy's face had taken on that lustful appearance that most young men seemed to get around Buffy. If anything Bo's behavior finally got Shirley's avid attention off of the Slayer as she shot him a curious look. The Slayer just bit back her inward smile. "Oh great," she thought, "a puppy love crush." Buffy watched as Shirley rolled her eyes at the look on Bo's face, and the Slayer had to bite back another grin. "Apparently Shirley thinks the same thing," Buffy mused.

"It's nice to meet you Mr. Holmes, Ms. Holmes, Bo, you too Shirley, Giles has told me absolutely nothing about you," Buffy said with a grin. Robert, knowing Giles well, laughed at the obvious joke, as did Peggy.

"Yes that sounds like Rupert, always playing his cards close to the chest," Mr. Holmes said still laughing.

"Yes, Well, Buffy why don't you take Shirley and Bo to the car while I help Robert with the bags," Giles said with a pointed look.

"Yeah sure, no problem," the Slayer replied with a shrug. "Come on it's this way."

Robert, Peggy and Giles left to retrieve the Holmes' luggage while Buffy walked with Shirley and Bo to the car. Bo had yet to lose that awed look he had upon first seeing Buffy. Shirley was still examining the Slayer intently, which was becoming a little disconcerting for her. She was about to say something when Shirley spoke.

"You were in a fight last night," she said. It was a statement not a question. "More than one person too, two to be exact. One had a knife, and you defeated both of them" Buffy in the meantime had turned to the young girl with a stunned look on her face.

"How did you know that?" the Slayer asked. She was very suspicious, even if her spidey sense wasn't tingling. Bo just rolled his eyes and said, "Here we go."

"Simple deduction, you have a small blood stain on the sleeve of your shirt and one on the hem. They happened on the same night since they have faded to the same color. It is logical to conclude that the cut on your arm is the source of the second stain and the one on your sleeve comes from blood that was splatter when one of your attackers hit you across the lip. Since one injury is made from a knife and the other is from a fist it leads me to conclude that you fought multiple opponents. You must have defeated both of your opponents since you have no other sever injuries. You are obviously very skilled. The fight had to have taken place yesterday because, the bloodstains have only been washed once and to get most of the blood out so quickly you must have washed your shirt right after the fight. Also you shirt has the odor of being freshly laundered."

Buffy's jaw was very close to hitting the ground; this was the most the Shirley had said since she had met the girl, and for her to start a conversation with Buffy with "you were in a fight," had all of her inner trouble alarms blaring. Shirley's explanation had sounded reasonable but Buffy wasn't so sure. This was the Hellmouth and overlooking anything out of the ordinary in Sunnydale could get a lot of people really, really dead.

"Your right I was in a fight yesterday," Buffy finally said recovering. "And one of them did have a knife."

"That must have been scary for you," Bo said. "Was it muggers?"

"Yeah it was muggers from some local gang," Buffy lied. Shirley just narrowed her eyes. She knew the Slayer was lying. She also noted the Slayer's discomfort; it made the detective wonder what Buffy had to hide. Noticing her look, Buffy cleared her throat.

"Well I have to admit that I'm impressed," she said turning to Shirley. "That is quite a brain you have in there." Buffy was smiling and finally Shirley gave a tentative smile of her own, but her eyes still held the gilt of suspicion.

"Yes it is," the young detective said and turned away from the Slayer. Buffy could almost swear that there was a warning in her voice. A warning for her.

Shirley Holmes was awakened by the sound of a thump outside of the suite she was sharing with her gran. She turned to see the iridescent numbers of her travel alarm clock glowing 6:30. The young girl quickly hopped out of bed and tied her robe around her body. As swiftly and as silently as possible Shirley made her way to the guestroom door and went outside. Looking left and then right, the junior detective checked to see if anyone else was around. Satisfied that she was alone Shirley walked the sort distance across the hall, scooped up the newspapers that were in front of her father's shared room with Bo, and went back inside the suite, carefully shutting the door behind her. Going back to her room Shirley sat on the floor grabbed her backpack, and dug for the pair of scissors she kept within its depths. Finding them she placed them on the floor beside her and carefully spread out the first of the two papers, the Redington Gazette. Perusing the black and white text the young Ms. Holmes followed her normal morning ritual of cutting out the unsolved and unexplained crime articles in the paper. She set them aside and returned the paper to its former rolled up state. Setting the Redington Gazette aside also, Shirley turned her attention to Sunnydale's local paper, the Sunnydale Chronicle. She unrolled the paper and started reading and cutting out articles. By the time she was done the paper looked like a piece of swiss cheese and Shirley had six articles on the floor beside her, spread out in what, to the casually observer, would appear a haphazard way, but to Shirley there was a distinct order to the chaos. Frowning, the junior detective dug into her bag once more and pulled out a folder, removing from it a number of articles that she had cut out the paper the previous day. Arranging them on the floor, Shirley starred at them, her frown deepening. This is how Bo found her two hours later, surround by newspaper clippings, and not having moved a muscle.

"Hey Shirl, your dad is looking for the newspapers," Bo said.

"Hmmm," was Shirley's non-communicable reply.

"Hey earth to Shirley, this is Houston calling Shirley do you read, over."

"Yeah sure, be right there," she said. Shirley still had not looked at him. Bo sighed, exasperated, and walked away. Pausing at the door he turned back. "The normal people are eating now, feel free to join us." Shirley still did not look up and Bo shook his head and smiled. "Sometimes she is just too weird," he thought chuckling. Shirley took one last look at the clippings before gathering them up and dumping them into her backpack. The young detective quickly dressed, pulling on a pair of jeans and a blue t-shirt and left the room. She was still lost in thought when she went into the kitchen that was part of the connecting suites given to the Holmes' for their stay.

"Morning Dad," she said to her father. "Here are the papers, sorry but I can't eat now I have to run." Shirley tried to get away but her father's voice halted her.

"Where exactly do you have to run to Shirley. We are on a vacation here." Shirley turned to her dad with a smile.

"I know dad that is why I have to run. There is this museum down the street that I ... that we wanted to check out," she said indicating Bo. Her best friend just sent her a puzzled and wary look. The look Shirley sent him was pleading. Finally with an exasperated sigh Bo smiled at Mr. Holmes and said.

"Yeah that's what me and Shirl were going to do today, if it is all right?"

"Well I suppose, what do you think?" Robert addressed this question to Peggy.

"Oh I'm sure they will be alright dear."

"All right then, off with you but be back before dark," Robert replied.

"We will dad, thanks." Shirley grabbed Bo's arm and dragged him from the table. He managed to grab a piece of toast from his unfinished breakfast and with a look of extreme martyrdom, allowed himself to be dragged from the table. When both kids were gone Mr. Holmes held up the newspapers for his mother to see. He was grinning widely as he showed her the holes.

"Seems I can't even get an intact paper on vacation." Gran just laughed.

Shirley and Bo bounded out of the front doors of the British Embassy of Sunnydale, California giving the doorman a jaunty wave on the way out. As soon as they were out of earshot of the embassy doorman Bo turned to his friend and asked.

"Ok Shirley, what is this about? You have that look on your face." Bo recognized that look; it was one that meant she was going to get them in to trouble.

"I'll tell you in a minute, but I need to find a phone book first." The junior detective and her partner walked a little ways until they ran into a pay phone. Without even stopping for a breath Shirley rushed to the phone booth and started leafing through the yellow pages under cemeteries. Upon reaching the section she pulled it out and then went to the white pages under Summers. Finding the address there she tore out this page and went to a set of nearby steps to sit down.

"Shirley, isn't that against the law," Bo said ruefully, pointing to the ripped out pages. She just grinned back.

"Only if you get caught." Her face pulled down into a contemplative frown. "Bo look at this, what do you see?" She handed him the yellow pages.

"I see a listing of cemeteries, so what," he replied offhandedly. Shirley glared at him.

"Yes it is a list of cemeteries, but look at how many. This is a small town Bo, and it has twelve cemeteries,not one or two, but twelve. Doesn't that strike you as a little odd."

"I don't know, should it?" he asked.

Shirley sent him an exasperated look. "Yes it should, It would mean that there are almost as many dead people here as living people. The other thing that is weird is that in the three days that we have been here their have been seven unsolved murders and three blood bank break-ins. All of except one of the victims died the same way, and the local police as well as the press are calling the deaths unrelated. In fact the articles were buried in the back of the newspaper with little or no coverage."

"Oh Shirley not another mystery, not now, we are on vacation," Bo grumbled. Shirley's face took on a stubborn look.

"I'm not letting it go," she said anticipating his next response. "Are you in or out."

Bo sighed. "I'm in, someone has to keep you out of trouble," he said on a grin. Shirley smiled. "Thanks."

"Yeah no problem, so what is our next move," Bo asked.

"Well most of the victims were teenagers and there is a local hangout were a lot of the highschoolers go called the Bronze."

"First question. How did you find out about the club, and second, how are we supposed to get in? I don't think we meet the age requirement, we won't even get a foot in the front door," he replied.

"I eavesdropped on the doorman hitting on the ambassador from France's daughter. He was asking her to the Bronze, and Bo, who said anything about the front door," she said and smiled a mischievous smile.


The Case of the Immortal Menace: Part 2

Dusk had fallen on the town of Sunnydale, and as darkness started to fall the local residents scattered to their homes. It was not safe to be out in Sunnydale after dark, due to what the police called the gang activity. Deep down the locals knew that was the convenient, believable excuse, but could not bring themselves to acknowledge the real danger in Sunnydale. There was one person, however, that was not driven indoors during the twilight hours. She was at this very moment trying to stay alive. A loud crashing could be heard in the nearby cemetery as a very large creature, with ridges on his face, glowing yellow eyes, and pointed teeth brushed the dust from a now crushed tombstone off of his jacket. Getting up from the pile of rubble he turned and faced the petite girl who had just thrown him there.

"This is my favorite jacket," he growled in menace, fingering the large rip that was in the sleeve.

Buffy Summers just shrugged and narrowed her eyes. "If that is your favorite jacket, someone should have called the fashion police on you years ago. I mean why do all vampires look like they are dressed for a disco or an eighties grunge show," the Slayer taunted. "I wouldn't be caught dead in something like that." Buffy wrinkled her nose. "Too late for you, though." The vampire roared in anger and rushed the Slayer, but Buffy was ready for him. The five foot three Slayer stepped aside quickly and delivered a roundhouse kick to the vampires back as he passed. Six foot four; Mr. ugly ended up sprawled face first on the ground, eating dirt. In one quick move, Buffy pulled her lucky stake, Mr. Pointy, from her waistband and slammed it through the vampires back, into his heart. He evaporated into a cloud of dust.

"Four baddies in a half an hour," Buffy said to the night. "Not bad for a nights work." All the vamps had been gofers out trying to make a name for themselves by killing the Slayer. Buffy wondered when, if ever, these guys were going to grow a brain. It seemed like most of the vampires in Sunnydale had less than half a brain cell to rub together between them. The Slayer brushed her hands off on her jeans, looked at her watch, and cursed. She was supposed to meet Willow and Xander at the Bronze twenty minutes ago. Breaking into a run Buffy ran out of the cemetery dodging head stones as she went. Hitting the sidewalk in a dead sprint she failed to notice the blond and brown haired heads that ducked behind the bushes right behind her.

"That was close," Shirley said to Bo.

"Yeah it was and you can let go of my shirt now," he said amused. Shirley blushed and released the material. "Sorry."

"Care to tell me why you didn't want Buffy to see us?" Bo questioned.

"Because I don't trust her," Shirley said simply. "She isn't what she appears to be."

Bo just looked at her like she was nuts. "That's crazy Shirl. You barely even know her. Wait a minute, you think she has a connection to the unexplained deaths don't you," he accused.

"What if I do," the junior detective challenged. "Just because you went all ga-ga over her when we met doesn't mean that I have lost my objectivity." Bo scowled at Shirley and moved to walk away from her but she caught his arm before he could leave.

"I'm sorry, that was..." Shirley paused and stuttered.

"Wrong," Bo put in.

"Yes," she said avoiding his gaze and the laughter she knew would be there. Bo smiled he knew that she couldn't say it so he let it go.

"I still don't trust her though," Shirley said. She was dangerously close to pouting.

"I give," Bo replied in a tortured voice. "Why don't you trust her."

"Because most people would have missed that cut on her arm. It was what puzzled me when I first met her. I knew that all the evidence pointed to her having been in the fight the day before she met our plane, but the cut looked like it was a week old. It isn't logical, it would mean she has an accelerated immune system. A system unlike that of any other human being," Shirley said frowning. "She also lied about who she fought and Mr. Giles wasn't completely honest with my Dad when he introduced her to us. She is more than a student to him, they are close, like a father and daughter." Buffy just didn't add up in Shirley's mind and the junior detective didn't like that. A lot of things about Sunnydale disturbed her, which is why she refused to let this go, something weird was going on and Shirley had decided that she was going to find out what it was.

"Shirley, are you sure you didn't land on your head when you fell out of bed this morning," Bo asked smiling. She just scowled at him.

"I don't care what you say. Something is not right here, logic aside can't you just feel it. This place is just·I don't know·wrong," she said and shivered. Bo's face took on a thoughtful look. He had to admit that Shirley may have a point, there was something off about this town. The thought chilled him and then he shook himself angrily. "I'm not going to let Shirley spook me into jumping at shadows," he thought determinedly.

"Shirley, I know you are usually right, but I think your wrong about Buffy. Even if she did lie I don't think that she is responsible for these murders." He was trying to be reasonable but his response just made Shirley shoot him a sour look.

"Then why lie about the fight Bo? If she wasn't fighting muggers who was she fighting?"

"I don't know why she lied about that, but being a lair doesn't automatically make her a murderer." Shirley scowled at him and Bo scowled right back at her. He knew he was being stubborn but he had instincts too, and they were telling him that Buffy was all right.

"Let's just get to the Bronze," she said and started off. Bo sighed and followed her without protest. He, however, did not look happy.

The two detectives left their hiding place and started off in the same direction as the Slayer. Both had failed to see the ragged young man that had been watching them. The man's face change for a second reveling the true nature of the vampire within but he shook it off. He was hungry but he knew the children were off limits·for now. Knowing were they were headed he came from hiding, and gave them a few minutes to get ahead of him. He then followed the children in the direction of the Bronze. The young man smiled to himself, his master would be pleased.

Buffy, Willow, and Xander sat at there usually table at the Bronze. Loud music blared throughout the club from the stage were a live band played. It wasn't Oz's band the Dingoes Ate my Baby, they were out of town, which is why Willow was paying attention to her friends instead of being groupie girl for her boyfriend. Buffy was in the middle of telling her friends about Giles' visitors.

"......so Shirley, just comes out and tells me about the fight I had last night. It was like she had been there. It came very close to wigging me out," Buffy was saying to Will and Xand.

"I know you have to be carefully Buffy, but she is just a kid, don't you think you might be overreacting?" Willow asked carefully.

"The anointed One was just a kid too, remember him Will, the Master's little heir-in-training," Xander pointed out. Willow had to admit to herself that he did have a point.

"Well, maybe she is clairvoyant," Willow replied reasonably. "I mean just because this is the Hellmouth doesn't necessarily mean that she is a baddie come to destroy the world. I admit that it is weird but it isn't any weirder than everything that has all ready happened to us. I mean, we already stopped the ascension, what more could happen to us?"

"Will, what are you trying to do," Xander exclaimed. "Invite the demons to tear our insides out through our nostrils."

"Well that was very vivid in lunch loosing way," Buffy replied scowling. "Thanks, Xand, I don't think that I will be joining you for pizza after all. In fact I think that I will never eat another thing for the rest of my life."

"Sorry," he replied sheepishly. "But I believe firmly in not tempting fate, the hazards of Hellmouth living. Anyway, even if this kid does have some supernatural nastiness planned we can handle it Buff, we always do."

"Xander's right Buffy." Willow added.

"I know, I know but what is bothering me is that my spidey sense didn't go on red alert around her, and I may be wrong but Giles' good friend might not like me going slayage mode on his daughter." Besides Buffy thought to herself. I don't think that she is a supernatural being, just too smart for her own good.

"No Will, the more I think about the more I think that she is mortal, because she didn't know that I was fighting vampires, just that I was fighting."

"Her last name, Holmes, it isn't as in Sherlock Holmes is it?" Willow questioned the Slayer. The young ammeter witch had a suspicion about Shirley.

"I thought about that too Will, but aren't those just stories."

"No there really was a Sherlock Holmes and if Shirley was able to deduce that you had been fighting through observation, then that would go a long way in proving that she is not some evil being come to kill the Slayer and bring the big brewing nasty evil to earth," Willow finished reasonably.

"Because we all agree that big brewing nasty evil would be bad," Xander added in his flippant way.

"Yes we all agree, evil bad, Hellmouth staying closed forever, good," Buffy said solemnly, but a light of teasing danced in her eyes.

"Ok Buff, spill why are you all of a sudden playing caution girl?" Xander asked. He could tell that his friend was hiding something. Buffy hesitated, not wanting to alarm her friends but figuring that they should know.

"All right I had one of my very cryptic but always bad news Slayer dreams, the day Shirley and her family arrived." Willow and Xander scowled at her.

"And when were you going to tell us about it?" Xander questioned almost accusingly. Buffy had the good grace to look guilty.

"Well you see that is Giles felt that we shouldn't worry anyone until he had a chance to do the geeky watcher research guy thing, because it has been so quiet lately, with no soul eating demons to speak of, and besides both of you have stuff that you were doing 'Xander with his trip and you with the wicca thing'" At there looks Buffy just sunk deeper into her chair. "Ok, Ok you win."

"Bad Slayer, Bad Slayer," Xander admonished.

"Don't push it," Buffy growled.

"Right."

Willow sent Xander a glare and the turned to Buffy. "So what was this dream about?" Willow asked.

"Oh you know, Hellmouth opening, Demons coming uninvited to the party, the usual cryptic stuff," Buffy replied flippantly. In truth the Slayer was more worried about the dream than she let on, she just didn't want Willow and Xander to worry needlessly. Still Shirley did have a starring role in this last dream. Now if she could only figure out if she was suppose to protect her or kill her.

"How about some specifics there, Buff," Xander prompted. Buffy sighed in response. She should have known that they wouldn't let it go.

"All right, there was a lot of fog and I was doing my usually patrolling of the grave yard when I felt something behind me. I turned and Shirley was standing there. She said that she knew who I was and that I wasn't going to get away with it any longer. I was staring at her and then all of a sudden she screamed and pointed behind me. Before I could see what it was the scene changed and I was standing by a stone altar. Someone was on it but I couldn't make out who, then there was chanting. It ended with a vivid picture of the residents of Sunnydale running for their lives from drooling demons." The more she thought about it the more the dream puzzled her. She was lost in thought when Willow's voice brought her back to reality.

"That was creepy," the young witch said and shuddered.

"I have to agree with the Will-mister, very creepy," Xander added.

"Yeah well, creepy or not we have to·" Buffy looked beyond her friends and trailed off.

"We have to" Xander promoted. "Earth to Buff," he said when she didn't answer.

"Could you excuse me for a minute," Buffy replied not looking at her friends. The Slayer bolted from the table before they could answer. She thought she had seen a familiar face that shouldn't have been there.

"Well that was rude," Xander said sounding miffed. Willow just scowled and threw a pretzel at him.

Shirley and Bo managed to duck back behind some stairs just as Buffy came into view. Bo was about to say something but the junior detective motioned for him to be quiet. Both teens watched as Buffy looked around suspiciously. Finally the Slayer gave up and started back toward her friends. Shirley and Bo both visible relaxed, and were about to come out of hiding when Buffy froze on her way back to her table. She stopped like she had heard something, cocking her head to the side to get a better feel for the sound. The two detectives tensed as the Slayer spun around on her heels and sprinted past them through the back door. The teens relaxed once more and Shirley made a motion to Bo, indicating that they were going to follow Buffy. But before they could leave one of the couples dancing nearby retreated to the corner and started to play a little tonsil hockey. Shirley sighed in exasperation, desperately wanting to follow the Slayer, and Bo tried to bit back a laugh. The junior detective frowned at him, not finding the situation amusing, and punched him in the arm. Bo just bit his lip harder.

Buffy burst through the back door into the alley at a run. The Slayer had been drawn to the back corner of the Bronze because she had thought she had seen Shirley and Bo there. It seems her mind must have been playing tricks on her because she didn't find the two teens. It was her Slayer sense though that had driven her into the alley. She had felt a vampire near by. Moving cautiously the Slayer withdrew a stake from her jacket pocket and made her way down the alley. It was darker than usually on this side of the Bronze and her sixth sense was screaming at her to be careful. Because of the darkness Buffy almost tripped over the body that was now decorating the deserted alley. It was a teenage girl. With a disgusted sigh the Slayer knelt down and turned the girl's head to the side noticing the fresh fang marks marring her neck. Suddenly Buffy visibly tensed. In one lightening quick move she stood, turned and slammed the stake into the vampire that had tried to sneak up behind her. His surprised gaze met the Slayer's right before he crumbled into dust. Buffy then knelt back down to the body, to make sure the girl wasn't going to be a riser.

After five minutes of the couple orally examining each other Shirley became impatient. Buffy was getting away and she wanted to follow her. That is when she noticed one of the girls on the dance floor looking around for someone, and with her keen observation skills she noticed the male class ring hanging from a chain around her neck. A quick glance at the oral surgeon in the corner confirmed Shirley's suspicions about who the ring belonged to. He had a tan line around the ring finger of his right hand. With an evil grin Shirley took a coin from her pocket and threw it at the girl on the edge of the dance floor. She managed to duck back just in time to avoid being seen by the girl. The look that crossed her face could have killed a three hundred pound linebacker fifty feet way. In a rage she stalked over to the couple in the corner, pulled the other girl off the guy by her hair, and smacked the guy hard across his face. Shirley's grin widened as the guy took off after his girlfriend trying to explain. Bo just looked at his friend, smiled, and shook his head.

"That was evil, Shirl." Shirley just shrugged her shoulders.

"Come on let's go find Buffy," she said to Bo and they were off.

The two detectives hit the back door at a run and what they saw in the alley stopped them in their tracks. It was Buffy leaning over the body of a dead girl with a stake in her hand. Bo's shocked in drawn breath caused the Slayer's head to jerk up. Her gaze met Shirley and Bo's horrified ones, but before she could say anything the flashing red and blue of a police light snapped on near the mouth of the alley. Shirley and Bo watched Buffy bolt down the alley without slowing, hit a crate, and use the momentum to execute a perfect flip over the fence that cut the alley in half. Shirley was in shock, she knew that move should take an impossible amount of power. The kind that someone Buffy's size shouldn't possess. It was Bo's urgent voice that snapped her out of it.

"Shirley we have to go right now," he practically yelled, tugging at her arm. She didn't acknowledge him. Instead she broke free of him and ran to the dead body of the teenager.

"What are you doing?" Bo hissed in a whisper he then sighed and ran to were Shirley was kneeling, examining the body.

"She was killed somewhere else and moved here Bo," Shirley said, puzzled. "And she has been drained of all her blood." Shirley shivered in revulsion.

"Yeah that's great Shirl, can we get out of here now," Bo said urgently.

Shirley nodded, still shaking a little, and broke into a run right behind him. A loud shout of "Hey you kids" spurred the detectives on faster. Bo was the first to break around the front of the Bronze dodging past the people who had come out to see what was going on. Shirley was following him, and briefly looked over her shoulders to see were the police were. The sight pushed her to speeds that Flo-Jo had never even reached. The cops were right behind them.

"Somebody stop those kids," one of the policemen yelled. It was the tubby one who had stopped giving chase almost immediately. He was bent over, his hands on his knees; drawing in breath like oxygen was going out of style. His partner didn't have the problem of too many donut stops, in-between speeding tickets. He was tall, lean, fast, and still giving chase. Shirley and Bo creened around another corner, turning on the street that would take them past Sunnydale Memorial Park, one of the towns many cemeteries. On there way past, Bo chanced a look over his shoulder and saw the cop just rounding the corner. Thinking fast he screeched to a halt, grabbed Shirley around her waist on her way past him and pulled them both into some nearby bushes. Shirley, who ended up sprawled on top of Bo, blushed and tried to pull away. Bo just tightened his arms around her, signaling that she shouldn't move, and listened intently. He could hear the officer's footfalls hitting the pavement as he ran toward them. Suddenly the officer stopped causing both Shirley and Bo to tense. They could hear him moving around, in front of their hideout, trying to decide were they had gone. A few minutes later the officer cursed, low and harsh, and went back they way he had come. Bo and Shirley listened to his retreating footsteps for a few more minutes until all they could hear were the faint sounds of night around them. Both teenagers released the breaths that they had been unconsciously holding.

"You can let go of me now," Shirley said to Bo. It was his turn to blush as he released the junior detective. They both crawled out of the bush and started brushing themselves off.

"Now do you believe me about Buffy," Shirley questioned without looking up. She was busy brushing leaves off of her t-shirt.

Bo sighed. "Yeah, I believe you now. Come on lets get back to the embassy. We can decide what to do in the morning." Shirley finished brushing herself off and nodded her consent. Truth be told she was just too tired to protest, now that the adrenaline rush from the last two hours was wearing off. So without objecting she followed Bo back to the embassy.

The dawning of the next day brought with it a very battle worn junior detective and partner. Shirley had barely slept a wink, haunted as she was by visions of Buffy standing over the dead girl. She finally nodded off around four in the morning, which is why when the paper came she wasn't awaken right away by the sound. Shirley instead bolted awake an hour later, wide-eyed and sweating, from a nightmare. She had felt something evil coming·coming for her. Shaking the remnants of the dream from her brain Shirley chastised her self for being superstitious. The only evil around here was Buffy and tonight Shirley was going to get the proof she needed to stop the killing. Hopping out of bed she grabbed her robe and tied it around her. Even being an hour late she still managed to get the paper before her dad. This time she only cut out one article from the Sunnydale Chronicle. It was the article on the girl that had died last night. After she had dressed the rest of her day was spent with her Dad, her gran, and Bo. She had talked to Bo about what they had seen last night and he thought that they should tell her dad and let the police handle it. Shirley knew, however that the police wouldn't be able to do anything without proof. She lied to Bo though and told him that she would tell her dad tomorrow. Knowing her like he did he, at first, didn't believe her, but she managed to convince him. For some reason Shirley had a bad feeling about this whole situation. She wasn't usually one to go on her instincts but this time she was, and she decided that she didn't want Bo involved. She didn't want to see him get hurt. It was for this reason Shirley spent the day pretending nothing was wrong and in her mind planned her escape for tonight.


The Case of the Immortal Menace: Part 3

Dusk descended on the town of Sunnydale and the mysterious man in gray Armaini smiled into the darkness. The shadows had always been his domain, even before he developed a rather fatal reaction to sunlight. He didn't tan, didn't burn, he just sort of caught on fire, not a nice way to leave the world. Of course he planned never to leave the world and if tonight went as planned he wouldn't have to. Standing amidst the charred timbers of the Sunnydale high school library he surveyed the efforts of his underlings as they set up the altar. The man's grin was pure evil as he relished the way his plan had worked out so far. So predictable was his nemesis, as logical as her great grand uncle. He knew that, even in her brilliance, perhaps because of it, that she would be looking for a natural, human source for Sunnydale's murders. His minion had done just what he should have, leading that little brat right to the Slayer. Yes, everything was going according to plan, he could not fail. The vampire's laughter followed this thought into the night.

Shirley Holmes waited until everyone had gone to bed and then silently slipped out of the two-story guest room window. Using the old, sheet tied into a rope trick, the junior detective carefully lowered herself to the ground. Picking up her backpack, which she had stocked and hid earlier, Shirley raced off into the night. She didn't see the flash of blond hair as another person emerged from the shadows and followed her. At the end of the block the young Ms. Holmes placed her sack on the ground and rooted around for the phone book page she had ripped out a day earlier. Finding it she took off toward the direction of the Summer's house. It took Shirley twenty minutes to reach the Summer's place of residence. She was out of breath from the run but was managing to conceal it. That is when a sound came from above her startling her. The young detective hid herself among the Bushes just as Buffy appeared on her window seal. Using the tree outside of her second story window, the Slayer, dressed in patrolling clothes, namely her jeans, a tank top, and her battered leather jacket, lowered herself quickly down the branches. Shirley stayed hidden and emerged to follow the Slayer at a safe distance. She followed her to a nearby cemetery watching Buffy entered cautiously. Waiting a few minutes, and making sure the coast was clear, Shirley followed the Slayer in. The junior detective found her, stake in hand standing in front of a fresh grave. From her hiding place Shirley could make out the name on the grave, it was the girl who was killed at the Bronze last night. "A killer with a conscious," Shirley mused to herself, she was cut off from her musings when Buffy spoke.

"Ok we can play this one of two ways, either you show yourself right now and we get down to business, or I come find you. The second way is going to make me angry and put you in a lot of pain before I dust you." Buffy's voice was menacing and suddenly Shirley was feeling very afraid. Buffy had turned now and was staring right at Shirley's hiding place with hard eyes. The junior detective gulped and slowly came out of hiding with her hands up. Buffy's eyes widened when she saw who it was.

"I know who you are, and your not going to get away with it any longer," Shirley said with false bravado. Truthfully she was shaking in her sneakers.

"Shirley," the Slayer said. Shock was evident in her voice. The Slayer recovered and her voice took on an angry tone. "You shouldn't be here Shirley, Sunnydale isn't safe at night." Sometimes Buffy couldn't believe the stupidity of people. "There are things out here that you really don't want to see, much less deal with." What Buffy meant as a genuine warning came across to Shirley as a threat and only served to make her angry.

"Of course it isn't safe with you out killing people, the only problem is with the number of deaths in this town you can't have acted alone, what is it a cult, you and your friends out playing vampire." If Shirley hadn't been so mad she probably would have realized how dangerous confronting Buffy with this was if it were true. The Slayer in the meantime just stared at the girl in shock. Shirley was starting to get uneasy under that gaze and was about to make a break for it when Buffy started to laugh. She was laughing like Shirley's accusation was the funniest thing she had heard in her entire life. It probably was. Shirley saw red; her rage at what she thought was a callus evil person, was about to make her act irrationally. Shirley had thought Molly was bad but Buffy was coming across as completely off her rocker. Shirley then did what was probably the most illogical thing she has ever done; she attacked the Slayer, hitting her in the stomach with all of her strength. Buffy barely even reacted just dropped the stake and grabbed the girl's hands trying to calm her.

"Shirley," Buffy said soothingly. She got no response so she said a little louder, "Shirley." This seemed to get the girl's attention and she stopped struggling.

"Look I'm not going to hu·" She didn't get to finish that sentence. All of a sudden a flash of blond hair burst from the bushes and hit the Slayer on the head with a two by four·hard. The Slayer went down dazed and Bo dropped the wood reaching for Shirley's hand.

"Come on Shirl, run," Bo screamed. Shirley just stood there in shock. "Bo? You followed me?" she questioned rather dumbly. His answer was a wide grin.

"Of course, you didn't think I actually bought that line of bull you were feeding me this afternoon. Now can we get away from the psychopath before she recovers." Shirley didn't get a chance to answer. Suddenly a hand broke through the earth and grabbed Bo by his ankle. The boy screamed as he looked down at the dirt-covered hand that now had a death grip on his leg. A girl's head popped out of the dirt right behind the hand. He had been standing on the fresh grave. The vampire was using Bo as leverage to free herself from its prison of dirt. Through the distortion of the vampiric features Shirley realized that it was the girl from the alley, the dead girl. She let out a blood-curdling scream as the creature pulled Bo off balance and quickly pulled itself free of the fresh earth. The newborn vampire crawled over Bo, grinned evilly, and was just about to sink it's teeth into the boy's unprotected throat when a foot came out of nowhere and kicked it back against the head stone. Bo scrambled away quickly and went to were a stunned Shirley had fallen to her knees. He knelt beside her and put his arms around her. She was in clearly in shock. Buffy had recovered from the two by four blow just in time to stop the vampire with a kick to its head. Flipping into a standing position the Slayer put up her guard ready for the fight. The new vampire rushed Buffy and tried to punch her in the face. She blocked the move effortlessly and countered with a palm punch that knock the vampire back. The vamp shook off the blow and attacked again, but this time Buffy sweep kicked the creature off of its feet. She quickly finished it off with a stake through the heart.

"Bo that was a...that was a......." Shirley stuttered.

"Yes a vampire," Buffy said with a smile at Shirley. The junior detective looked rather dazed and very very confused.

"How...Why.... you saved..... Shirley started. Buffy sighed, "I can explain everything, but first we have to get out of this grave......" The Slayer never finished that sentence. Four vampires burst froth from the surrounding bushes rushing the Slayer. She barely had time to get her defenses up before the first one attacked. While Buffy was busy a lone vampire crept up to Shirley and Bo, who were watching the fight in awe, and went up behind the detective and her partner. He pushed Bo away from Shirley and grabbed the girl from behind. Shirley screamed and bit the hand the vampire tried to clamp over his mouth hard. The vampire yelped in pain and knock Shirley on the back of her head, almost rendering her unconscious. "Shirley," Bo screamed, drawing the attention of the Slayer. One of Buffy's attackers took the opportunity to hit her across the mouth spattering blood on the vampire on the other side. Buffy quickly turned her attention to the one that hit her, a look of rage in her eyes and slammed the stake through his heart. She quickly reversed the stake in her hand and backhand dusted the vampire on her right. She then kicked the other two off of her and started toward the vampire holding Shirley. The junior detective had recovered a little from the blow and was struggling against the supernatural strength of the vampire holding her, but she was no match for him. Bo was also trying to free Shirley, hitting the vampire repeatedly, and pulling at his arms. When the vamp saw Buffy approaching him with murder in her eyes; he whistled to signal the end of the attack for the remaining vamps, and broke off in a run, punching Bo in the face to send him flying into the Slayer. Buffy caught the boy but in doing so lost sight of the fleeing vampires.

"Shirley," Bo croaked in anguish and pain. He collapsed in the Slayer's arms, and lost consciousness. Buffy scooped the boy up into her arms and broke for the cemetery gate, but by the time she hit the street it was too late. The vampires were gone and so was Shirley.

Rupert Giles was awakened by the sound of someone pounding on his door. He looked at his clock the time read forty minutes to midnight. Fumbling for his glasses the former watcher got out of bed, and placed them on his face. Rubbing the kink out of his neck he went to the door and opened it. Buffy didn't even give him a chance to comment on her presence; she just rushed in holding Bo in her arms.

"Giles, we have a problem, some vampires attacked me in the graveyard, and apparently Shirley and Bo followed me, they got Shirley before I could stop them," Buffy said as she rushed into the room. She gently laid the boy down on Giles sofa, he was still out cold. Turning to Giles Buffy continued, "Giles we have to do something."

"Buffy, what on earth are you talking about, slow down. Now, who has Shirley?"

"The vampires Giles, they took her, it was almost like....." Buffy said then trailed off. Her eyes took on an understanding look as she continued. "It was almost like they knew she would be there, like they needed her for something." Giles' face in the meantime had taken on a thoughtful look.

"Remember that dream you had, well I was going to tell you tomorrow that I thought I had found something."

"What was it?" she asked expectantly. The former watcher didn't answer right away instead he went back into his room. A moment later he emerged with two books and handed one to Buffy. The Slayer looked at the title and cocked an eyebrow in his direction. "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Giles what is this?"

"Read the marked page," Giles remarked. He opened the other book and started leafing through it. Buffy opened her book to the marked page and read when she was finished she looked up at Giles with a puzzled expression.

"So what Giles, its about some Professor Morty"

"Moriarty," Giles corrected automatically without looking up.

"Moriarty, that was killed when him and detective boy fell off a cliff," Buffy said.

"Supposedly killed," Giles replied. "Holmes managed to survive that fall, although he claimed that Moriarty didn't. I believe that he was mistaken."

"What you think this professor character was turned?" Buffy questioned.

"That is exactly what I think and if I am right then we are in greater danger than I imagined."" Giles finally looked up at Buffy with a grave expression on his face. Buffy just sighed.

"Ok Giles, how great are we talk'in, minor damage to town, or end of the world?

"I'm afraid it is end of the world. According to my research the very crime syndicate that Sherlock Holmes managed to destroy arose a few years later after his death. In the late nineteen twenties a burglar was captured after trying to steal Van Gogh's Starry Night. He confessed that a well-dressed businessman hired him. He was dismissed as crazy, however when he identify the man's picture from an old drawing of Moriarty that had been featured in the Strand Magazine. The Strand was the magazine that published Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's stories based on Sherlock Holmes. After digging a little further I found this," Giles said and held up the book he held. "It is an ancient vengeance spell that would generate enough energy to open the Hellmouth. It calls for a human sacrifice, but not just any sacrifice. The subject must be as worthy an opponent as the casters original nemesis. The sacrifice must also be related to, the original enemy."

"So let me get this strait Giles, your telling me that the Vampire of professor Moriarty is here in Sunnydale and is going to sacrifice Shirley to open the Hellmouth."

"Yes that is precisely what I am saying," Giles replied pushing his glasses up. Buffy's mouth settled into a hard-determined line.

"How long?" she asked.

"The ritual must be preformed at the stroke of midnight," Giles said.

"That only gives me thirty minutes to find her," Buffy said incredulously. The Slayer was worried, worried that she wouldn't find her in time.

"I know, Buffy, but that is assuming he has the ritual set-up. It is a very complex spell," Giles said calmly.

"Oh he has it set-up Giles," Buffy said frowning. Suddenly a light entered the Slayer's eyes. "And I know just were he is." Before Giles could ask were Buffy went to the closet by the front door, grabbed the crossbow and some extra arrows.

"Watch him," the Slayer yelled over her shoulder, with a gesture to an unconscious Bo. She then bolted out the front door into the night.

Buffy Summers moved quickly through the streets and back alleys of Sunnydale. Being the resident Slayer in town gave her the advantage of knowing every shortcut and back alley that existed in this place. She knew that Moriarty was counting on the Slayer not being able to figure out were he had taken Shirley, much less figuring out that he was behind the whole thing in the first place. That was going to prove to be his fatal error. The arch nemesis of the late great Sherlock Holmes had underestimated Buffy, a mistake that few vampires ever lived to tell about. The other advantage to being one of the oldest surviving slayers was that she knew the only place in town a vamp would go to open the Hellmouth. She should know, her and her friends blew the place up just a few months ago, during graduation. She was making her way towards what was left of the Sunnydale High School, former slayer headquarters, and home of the mouth of Hell.


The Case of the Immortal Menace: Part 4

Bo Shawchuk awoke, with a massive headache to show for his actions. Sitting up slowly he put his head in his hands to stop the room from spinning. Bo's mind was reeling, and out of focus. When his head cleared for a minute, he stood up abruptly and said, "Shirley." The rapid movement had been a mistake, he realized as the world started to spin. Bo sat back down, slowly, and waited for his world to right itself again.

"Don't worry Buffy has gone to get her," an accented voice said off to his left. It took Bo a minute to realize it was Mr. Giles not Mr. Holmes.

"Just relax, that eye is going to be a fright." Bo's hand automatically went up to see what Giles was talking about, and he winced when his hand encountered the source of his headache.

"I have to go after her, she's in trouble," the young boy said through the pain.

"Yes she is, but you can hardly help her if you can't even stand up without the room spinning," Giles remarked easily. "Here let me get you some ice for that." Bo just nodded his consent. The former watcher smiled, got up and walked toward the kitchen to search for some ice. When Bo was sure that Giles was occupied he struggled to his feet, and used the couch to get him to an end table. Once there he picked up a heavy candlestick, crept up behind Giles, and whacked him in the head. The watcher slumped down to the kitchen floor unconscious.

"Sorry," Bo apologized to the downed watcher, "but I knew you wouldn't let me leave this house and I have to go after Shirley. She needs me." The teenager patted Giles on the head and stumbled back into the living room, strait out the front door. Bo started off on a stumbling run down the block. With each passing moment his head cleared a little more. Finally he was running smoothly, but he still had a bigger problem, he didn't know were he was going. This thought caused him to stop for a minute to get his barring. He knew he had to find Shirley, he just had a feeling that if he didn't she wouldn't be around any longer to drag him into trouble. That was not a consequence he was prepared to live with, now or ever. That was when Bo caught some movement off to his left, he managed to duck behind a car just as someone turned the corner. It was one of those things that had attacked him and Shirley in the graveyard. The vampire seemed to be in a hurry, like he was late for something. Bo let him get a little ways ahead of him and then followed the creature. If he were lucky it would lead him right to Shirley. Bo just hoped that his luck for today hadn't run out.

Shirley Holmes groaned, and came back into consciousness slowly. The bump on her head throbbed painfully were the vampire had knocked her unconscious. Shirley tried to sit up but she found she was tied to some sort of weird stone. Above her a very handsome man with dark hair graying at the temples and brown eyes looked down on her.

"Ah my dear Ms. Holmes, how good of you to join us," the man said. Shirley's eyes widened in recognition, but quickly went back the cool stoic gaze she used to hide her feelings.

"Hello Professor Moriarty," she said calmly. The vampire just laughed.

"Figured it out have you," he said in a cold tone. "Too bad it does you no good."

"So you're a vampire," the junior detective replied nonplused. "You planned this didn't you," she said then continued. "The state dinner that my father had to attended was to get me here. Once here you knew that I would find the amount of unsolved crime here odd, you also knew that I would go after Buffy."

Morarity smiled. "How very astute you are, and yes you are right, I knew that you would go after that insolent vampire Slayer leaving me free to set up the site of your untimely demise. I must say that you did everything that I thought you would, just like your great grand uncle. Well the apple never does fall far from the tree they say. Tell me would you like me to tell you the rest or can you guess."

Shirley smiled, but it held no warmth. "Oh I think I can guess. The body of the girl in the alley was a plant; your little vampire gofer put it there to lure Buffy and me out into the alley. You used the female vampire to seduce the boy at the Bronze to keep me in the corner long enough to give Buffy time to kill gofer boy. He must have been expendable. I noticed that there was something off about the girl, but then I didn't believe in vampires at that time. She detained me just long enough for me to run out and see Buffy leaning over the body of a dead girl, thus leading me to suspect the Slayer," Shirley said and paused. "Am I right so far?"

"Oh yes you are doing splendidly," Moriarty laughed in maniacal glee. "Your great grand uncle would be so proud. Please continue."

"Well you obviously knew that my next move would be to follow Buffy so you set the trap in the graveyard, knowing she would be in the graveyard waiting for that vampire to rise, then you sprung your trap. But there was one thing you didn't count on Professor," Shirley said slyly. While she was talking the junior detective had caught a pair of reassuring blue eyes in the bushes behind Moriarty.

"Oh and what was that," he said grinning. He was not really concerned.

"Me figuring it out too," a voice from behind the Professor said. Stunned the vampire turned and came faced to face with the Slayer. She was pointing the business end of the crossbow at him. "Surprise," she said and fired the bolt at the vampire, which did the unthinkable. He caught it right before it entered his chest. Moriarty snarled in rage.

"Oh-oh," Buffy said ominously. She was staring at the now useless arrow caught in Moriarty's right hand.

"Kill her," he said, addressing his minions. The vampires that had been stunned by the appearance of the Slayer quickly took action. Buffy found herself surrounded by six very large male vampires. She threw down the empty crossbow and withdrew her lucky stake, Mr. Pointy.

"This is so not good," she said, just before ducking a punch thrown at her head. "Don't fail me now Mr. Pointy," she thought just when the rest of the vamps joined the fray. Midnight was fast approaching so while his vampires kept the Slayer busy Moriarty turned towards Shirley and started the incantation for the vengeance spell. Shirley's eyes widened when she saw the jewel encrusted knife the Professor laid next to her and all of her bravado evaporated. She screamed in pain as the vampire used the knife to cut open her hand, and recoiled in disgust when he licked the blade clean sighing in ecstasy at the taste of her blood. He let the rest of her blood drip onto a symbol drawn in red on the ground to start the ritual. Buffy heard her scream and flinched visibly in empathy. There was nothing she could do at the moment, however being busy just staying alive. Tears were now coursing down the young detectives face and she look just like what she was a scared teenager with a manic trying to kill her. Buffy was still fighting her way through the vampires trying to reach Shirley in time. A quick glance at her watch showed her the time. It was two minutes to midnight. With renewed determination the Slayer dusted two of the vampires and turned her attention to the other four. She quickly dusted one more but she was running out of time. Buffy could see the glow that was starting to come over Shirley as Moriarty chanted. The professor bent down picked up the ritual knife and placed it over his head. Buffy fought harder trying to break free of the remaining vampires. Because of her lack of focus one of her attackers got in a lucky punch and knocked the Slayer to the ground. The two other vampires grabbed her arms and pinned her; she was unable to move. Helplessly she watched as Moriarty brought the knife down toward Shirley's heart. Buffy locked eyes with Shirley, both the Slayer and the detective thought it was all over, that is until a blond blur broke from the surrounding rubble and tackled Professor Morairty. "Nooooo," a boy's voice screamed. It was Bo, and the tackle bought Buffy all the time she needed. Using all of her considerable Slayer strength Buffy broke free of the two vampires.

"Now that is no way to treat a lady," she taunted. Right before sending them to their new permanent homes of ashtrays. The last vampire took one look at the Slayer and ran for his miserable immortal life. After tackling Moriarty Bo had scrambled to his feet and rushed to Shirley's side.

"Are you ok?" he asked gazing at her in concern. To choked up to speak she nodded. Bo smiled. "Then lets get you out of here," he said.

"I don't think so you little brat," the professor said standing up. His hand shot out and grabbed Bo by his throat, lifting the boy bodily off the ground.

"Bo," Shirley yelled. "Let him go," she screamed again, unsuccessfully struggling against her ropes. She was watching helplessly as her best friend's face turned a peculiar shade of blue.

"Put the kid down Professor," Buffy growled from behind Moriarty.

The vampire sighed, "Aren't you dead yet." The Slayer shot the Professor a cocky grin.

"Sorry but it is going to take more than those fashion rejects of yours to kill me," Buffy taunted.

"Very Well," he said and threw boy across the rubble into a partial burnt wall. Shirley whimpered as she watched his head hit the wall and his body slid down to the ground, unconscious. Buffy narrowed her eyes; this jerk wade had really ticked her off now. The vampire and the Slayer faced each other, each looking for an opening. Buffy's leg shot out in a roundhouse kick, which the Professor expertly blocked. He then countered with a punch that caught the Slayer in the face. She heard her nose crack, the professor's blow breaking it. Buffy recovered and readied Mr. Pointy for battle. Moriarty kicked her lucky stake out of her hand and did a leg sweep that knock the Slayer on her butt. She quickly recovered and countered with a kick to his face. The force of the blow caused him to stager back. During this battle neither of the opponents happened to notice Shirley who was wiggling around trying to reach her pockets. Finally the junior detective was able to get her uninjured hand inside her Jean pocket. She withdrew a Swiss army knife. With a little bit more maneuvering to get it open and into position, she started cutting her bonds, one agonizing centimeter at a time. Finally the rope gave way and she was free. Shirley hopped down off the altar and turned just in time to see the Professor land a particularly nasty blow to the Slayers right cheek. Thinking fast Shirley went to the stake that Moriarty had kicked out of Buffy's hands and yelled.

"Buffy catch." Buffy saw the stake coming to her out of the corner of her eye. She did a one eighty that allowed her strike a blow across Moriarty's back. The professor slammed, face first, into a partial burned wall. Buffy caught the stake, winked at Shirley, and tuned just as the Professor was turning. The Slayer jammed the stake into his heart just as he turned to face her. Surprise crossed his feral animalistic features right before he exploded into a cloud of dust, the wind blowing him away into the night. "Ashes to Ashes," Shirley mumbled seeing the vampire destroyed. Blue eyes met blue as Shirley and Buffy gazed at each other, both girls sighed in relief, it was over. Turning to the young girl Buffy grinned, that cocky Slayer grin of hers and said.

"What a way for you to spend your vacation." Shirley found that she couldn't help herself, all of the tension from that last few days bubbled forth and she started laughing hysterically. There were tears in her eyes by the time she was finished and she was hugging herself. Buffy went over to the junior detective and gently turned over the girl's injured hand wincing at the deep cut she had there. Working quickly she ripped a piece of material off of her tank top and tied it around Shirley's hand to stop the bleeding.

"You're going to need stitches for that," Buffy said matter of factly. Shirley just shrugged. Right now she was just finding immense joy in being alive.

"Come on," Buffy said gently, "Lets get you and your friend to the emergency room."

"Sure," Shirley said and went over to Bo. Kneeling down beside him she gently brushed away a lock of hair that had fallen over his forehead.

"Is....Is he going to be Ok?" Shirley asked tentatively her eyes fearful. The Slayer nodded reassuringly. "He's going to be fine." Buffy approached the boy and in one smooth motion picked him up. "Come on, let's get him to a doctor." Shirley stood there staring after the retreating Slayer, and then followed.

"Who are you?" Shirley questioned Buffy. She was severely distressed. Nothing she had seen in that last hour could have any explanation but the impossible. When Buffy didn't answer Shirley put her hand on her arm, staying her, met the Slayer's eyes and asked again. "Who are you?"

Buffy gave the girl a gentle smile. "I'm Buffy: the Vampire Slayer." Shirley nodded, a little bewildered, and smiled at the Slayer, Buffy smiled back. Shrugging her shoulders the junior detective and the Slayer turned and headed toward Sunnydale Memorial Hospital.

In room 314 of Sunnydale Memorial Bo Sawchuk lounged in the hospital bed with Shirley sitting perched beside him on the right side. Both of the teenagers were in those hospital gowns that left your dignity dented, but neither seemed to notice, or mind. Shirley since her father had brought her a robe earlier and she had that on, with the belt tied tightly firmly around her waist. He had been there earlier scared witless for his little girl and Bo, and had practically promised to give Buffy her own country for saving them from the gangs. Shirley had to bite her lip to keep from revealing Buffy's secret, finding out that Buffy was the Slayer, and exactly what that was, was like finding out that Superman is living next door to you and not being able to tell anybody about it. But she and Bo had promised Buffy that they would never reveal who and what she really was. So Shirley and Bo had smiled, nodded, and let her father and grandmother assume things until the cows came home. Now they were both alone in Bo's room, Bo with his arm in a plaster caste and sling, Shirley with her hand stitched up and wrapped in bandages. She also had an IV in her uninjured arm feeding her antibiotics. The ER attending, Dr. Cali, had been worried about a possible infection setting in from the knife and was taking every precaution. Using her uninjured hand, the junior detective bent over Bo and adjusted his sling, causing him to wince in pain.

"Gee Shirl, don't you think that I am in enough pain without you causing more." He was grinning when he said this.

"Sorry Bo," she said sheepishly. She looked at him shyly. "By the way, did I thank you for saving my life."

"Yes, but you can always say it again," he said grinning. "Preferable with a month of slave labor." Shirley scowled at that while Bo laughed.

"All right I will carry your books until you are better," Shirley said grudgingly.

"And," Bo prompted a mischievous light in his eyes. Shirley rolled her eyes.

"Two weeks of math homework."

"And," he prompted again. She sighed.

"No mysteries for·a week," she said hopefully. He shook his head no. Shirley scowled. "Two weeks?" This time Bo pretended to look thoughtful, but he dashed her hope with another quick headshake.

"A month," he said in a tone that booked no arguments.

"A month," Shirley practically squealed. Her face had the look a chain smoker might get when trying to lay off the cigarettes. "Three weeks," she bargained desperately.

"A month," Bo said again, he was not budging.

"FINE. A month," Shirley replied grudgingly.

"And," Bo said. He was pushing his luck. Shirley scowled at him.

"Don't push it Sawchuk," she replied menacingly. Bo looked thoughtful. "Fair enough," he said and smiled.

"I should have let the vampire get you," a voice teased from the doorway. Buffy Summers stood at the door to Bo's hospital room with a bouquet of flowers and a smile.

"Yeah you should have," Shirley grumbled. "He can blackmail me for the rest of my life with this one."

"Oh come on Shirl, you know you love me," Bo coaxed, finally Shirley smiled.

"I guess you're useful to have around·sometimes," she added flippantly. Buffy smiled at the two teenagers and approached the bed.

"So how is the recovering hero?" Buffy asked pleasantly. "That is a nice shiner you have, you should color coordinate with wardrobe. How do you feel?" Bo just sent another mischievous look toward Shirley.

"I'm in pain," he moaned. It was completely fake. "In a lot of pain." Shirley just sighed in exasperation. Turning to Buffy she said. "You know he isn't going to stop this until he has my immortal soul." Buffy laughed outright at that.

"Don't worry he will let you off the hook in a decade or two," Buffy teased.

"By the way Bo, Giles has almost completely forgiven you for knocking him out. Today, instead of a curse word and a frown when I mentioned your name, he only mumbled and frowned. In stuffy English guy terms that is almost a full pardon."

Bo had the good grace to wince a little in chagrin. "I really am sorry about that," he said sheepishly.

"How about, if by some miracle your Dad lets you come back to Sunnydale, you two stick to sight seeing and leave the vampires to me," Buffy replied seriously.

"I have no problem with that whatsoever," Bo answered with a smile. "I mean, I like horror movies, it just doesn't mean I want to be in one."

"Well at least that is one affirmative to leave the slaying to the slayer." Buffy turned with an expectant look at Shirley. Bo's look joined it.

"Well Shirley," he prompted. The look that stole over Shirley's attractive features was the picture of pure innocence.

"Yeah...sure ..... no problem," she replied. She was trying not to think of the vampire dust sample she collected at the gravesite when she had broke out of the hospital during lunch.

Buffy smiled at both detectives. "Good," she said and then added. "Well I just stopped by to see how you were doing, now I have to go." The Slayer's eyes took on a longsuffering look. "Giles has decided that I need to train today." The two teens shot her sympathetic looks. "Well I'll see you around, get better, both of you." She smiled again and turned to leave.

"Buffy," Shirley said tentatively, halting the Slayer. She was almost to the door and she turned to the girl with an expectant look.

"Thanks," she said simply. Buffy just smiled. "Your Welcome," she replied and walked away. Shirley couldn't help but feel that it was like watching the cowboy hero ride into the sunset. Or in this case harsh florescent lighting.

Later on that night by the light of the moon, Shirley sat at a desk by the window in her room at the embassy. Both her and Bo had been released from the hospital and Bo was sleeping peacefully across the hall. Tomorrow the Holmes' were returning to Redington, Mr. Holmes having decided that he had had quite enough excitement to last him for a few years. Shirley couldn't agree with him more, at least for now. She took out the bag of leftover vampire from her backpack and smiled. Taking out her journal the junior detective opened it and pen in hand, started to write

"My great granduncle once said that once you have eliminated the probable, the improbable, however impossible, must be the truth. This case has tested the flexibility of what I used to believe possible, causing me to face things that I would have never imagined in my wildest dreams·or nightmares. Hopefully it will give me greater objectivity in the future. Right now I'm just glad that we are alive, and maybe that is enough. I now know that I will be less quick to judge people, because of the life debt I owe to one Buffy Summers. The Vampire Slayer. Maybe one day I will be able to repay it."

THE END