Damned If I Don't, Damned If I Do
Part Three of The Damned Series


PART NINE: 5th July to 23rd September 2004

Chapter Twenty Six: Figured You Out

Cleveland was having another warm sunny day and Kennedy - complaining that they had spent the entire summer inside going through books - insisted they research outside for once. Willow had grumbled at having to drag everything out with them, but it was actually really pleasant now they were settled. Even Giles had taken off his jacket and rolled up his shirt sleeves.

"There's one thing I still don't get," Kennedy said as she dribbled a soccer ball around and around the garden table.

"One thing?" Willow asked dubiously, trying to ignore that her girlfriend was making her dizzy. "Good for you. There's about a hundred things I still don't get."

"What's that, Kennedy?" Giles asked without looking up from the notebook he was reading.

"The baby. If we think this kid is going to be a hero, why aren't we encouraging Buffy and Faith to do the diddy instead of supporting her marriage to Troy? Couldn't the world use a few more heroes?"

Giles finally looked up, following her progress around the table. "We have no proof that the child will in fact be a hero, and we also have no proof that Buffy and Faith are the parents."

"The Sagaris, Giles," Willow reminded him. "The baby definitely has ties to the scythe, and we've counted Rona out so that only leaves Buffy and Faith."

"Yes... to be the mother," Giles said suddenly as he quickly pulled another book towards him. "The notes Mr Clydesdan left offer an alternative view to the one we've been pursuing."

"Like what?" Kennedy asked.

"He mentions a passage from the Codex of Japheth." He looked up again. "That's the book Buffy mentioned Troy's nemesis - Quantiaro - was after. I'd never heard of it before."

"Japheth was one of Noah's sons, right?" Willow checked.

"Yes, and at first I assumed it was a biblical book of some kind, perhaps one that never made it into any of the highly valued religious texts. However, according to Clydesdan, Japheth was also loosely associated with Iapetus."

"Sounds Greek," Kennedy offered.

"Exactly." Giles went back to pouring over the notes.

Willow shared a look with Kennedy. "Exactly what?" They asked at the same time.

"I'm not sure," he admitted. "But we're dealing with a Greek God with an interest in this possible baby and Iapetus was a Greek Titan. The Titans walked the Earth with the Old Ones. Their divinity balanced the unholiness of the pure demons." He flipped through the book and then looked over the stack on the table. "Kennedy, would you please fetch the Ionian Chronicles from the kitchen."

Kennedy dribbled the ball back towards the house as Willow asked,

"Giles, where is this thought train taking you?"

"I'm really not sure, but Clydesdan recommends cross referencing a passage in the Chronicles with this chapter here." Giles tapped the page he was trying to speed read. "Something about a person called Javan."

"He was one of Japheth's sons," she offered, doing a little start when sharp eyes suddenly focused on her. "My dad made me read the Torah when I was six, Giles."

Giles nodded absently and went back to his reading. "So you know that Javan was considered..." he flipped the page. "... the, uh, father of the Greek race?"

"If I did I'd forgotten," Willow admitted. "And you don't sound completely sure."

"Blasted book's in Hebrew," he muttered.

Willow sighed. "Well, hand it over then."

He did so with a thankful smile and picked up the notebook again. "Clydesdan seems to think that the Book of Japheth holds the original, or possibly just the most accurate translation, of the prophesy that requires all of Troy's mystical artefacts."

"So it's really not the baby prophesy after all?" she asked with another sigh.

"No, I believe it is, but we have yet to read the true text. What we have discovered is merely half the story."

"And the full story is in the Book of Japheth?"

"Yes; and as far as we know it's already in Troy's hands."

"So how do we figure it out?"

"With this hopefully," he said as Kennedy handed him a thick book. "Kennedy, the white board."

The slayer just stared at him and Willow gave her an apologetic smile on his behalf.

"He gets like this in the throes of enlightenment."

"What?" Giles looked up in confusion until he saw Kennedy's expression. "Oh yes, sorry, please could you record our findings on the board?"

Kennedy took the black marker out of her pocket and went over to where there were now three white boards set up on the lawn. She stood next to the one with the most white space while she waited, doing kick-ups with the soccer ball.

"Right. According to Clydesdan there is another prophecy, or perhaps revelation would be a better word, in that book." Giles pointed to the one Willow was now holding, waiting for instructions. "Concerning, well..." Giles' brow scrunched up a little in consternation. "...World War Three."

The soccer ball ricocheted off of one of the white boards. It made Willow jump but Kennedy ignored it as she asked, "Are we talking a war like the Iraq war or like the Sunnydale war?"

Giles didn't answer as he opened the Ionian Chronicles and ran his finger down the table of chapters.

"Giles," Willow said abruptly.

He didn't look up, which made her a little more worried, but he answered after a couple of moments.

"Both, I think, but the text you have there should tell us more."

Nodding, she started reading the page before her as fast as she could. Her Hebrew wasn't that rusty, but she stumbled over a few of the words in her haste and it was a few minutes before she came across a sentence that seemed connected. Kennedy was practically hopping from foot to foot by the time she looked up but was good enough to know that interruptions of the 'hurry up' kind would only make it take longer.

"The descendant of Iapetus and Javan after him will rise and conquer the nations of the Earth. The son will be both God and King of all peoples and will tie those of all faith unto him. The old will fall as the new climbs and brings the, uh, old forth again."

As Willow faltered, Giles started reading from his book. "The nations will fight between the old and the old and bring the wrath of both on their heads before the true Lord has won."

"Why does this stuff never make any sense," Kennedy muttered as she wrote furiously, trying to keep up.

"The blood will be on the descendants of Javan for they have betrayed Him. The glory will be on the descendants of Iapetus for they have awakened Them," Giles read.

Willow looked up from her book. "But it says here they are the same descendants."

"Exactly," Kennedy said as she finished scribbling on the board. "No sense!"

Giles read quietly for a moment before taking off his glasses and sitting back in his lawn chair.

"I think for now we should deal with the baby, or rather, the 'son' angle and leave the rest until we know more."

"Okay," Willow nodded. She was perfectly happy with one problem at a time, but she couldn't see how what they had just learned helped with any of the problems. "But I'm not sure what..."

Kennedy was reading back what she had written. "If the son is a descendant of Iapetus that means he must be Greek, or at least half Greek, right?"

"Okay, now I'm sure," Willow said, her voice pitched higher in alarm. "Troy's the Daddy?"

Giles nodded, looking as dismayed as she felt. "I've had my suspicions for a while."

"Then why didn't you say anything?" she accused.

"I was hoping I was wrong," he admitted.

"There is a silver lining," Kennedy said, making them both turn to her in surprise. "At least we know Faith's the one who's gonna get pregnant."

"How does that help us exactly?" Willow asked harsher than she meant to. "She's marrying Troy. She's probably having sex with him all the time. We can't stop her from getting pregnant if he wants her to."

"No, not indefinitely at least," Giles mused, his glasses tapping his lip. "But prophecies are usually specific in their timing and it may be possible that we can prevent them from having, uh, conceiving on the night in question."

They passed a look between them, all thinking the same thing but no one having the nerve to voice it.

Eventually Kennedy shrugged. "Well if anyone can...I think you need to get hold of Buffy."

Chapter Twenty Seven

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Part Nine Quick-Jump:

Chapter One || Chapter Two || Chapter Three || Chapter Four || Chapter Five || Chapter Six || Chapter Seven Chapter Eight || Chapter Nine || Chapter Ten || Chapter Eleven || Chapter Twelve || Chapter Thirteen || Chapter Fourteen || Chapter Fifteen || Chapter Sixteen || Chapter Seventeen || Chapter Eighteen || Chapter Nineteen || Chapter Twenty || Chapter Twenty One || Chapter Twenty Two || Chapter Twenty Three || Chapter Twenty Four || Chapter Twenty Five || Chapter Twenty Six || Chapter Twenty Seven || Chapter Twenty Eight || Chapter Twenty Nine || Chapter Thirty || Chapter Thirty One

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