This story takes place before the events of my "Four Friends" stories.
In this episode, Dana breaks loose, and it seems only Robin stands in her way. Which is pretty much the way his luck has been going ...
Chapter 8: EGG-SCAPE
Attracted by the explosion, Faith bounded into the gym, taking in the carnage with one quick glance. She turned to Robin, the only person besides Dana still standing, and flicked her head toward the exit. “Get out.”
Robin didn’t hesitate. Dana’s psychosis came from her being victimized by men, which probably explained why she’d sliced Spike’s hands off. It looked like fighting her wasn’t an option, and the last thing her feverish psyche would react well to would be another male. He darted for the door, pausing only long enough to tell Faith, “You have to get through to her.”
“I plan to.” As Robin pulled the door shut, he saw Faith step toward Dana, both hands raised in a gesture of peace. “Dana, listen. I know you’re hurting. I’ve been hurt, too. I just want to help you ...”
The door shut, and Robin headed toward the library, where Giles had some non-lethal weapons stashed. “Jason, are you monitoring?”
The teen’s voice, an octave higher than normal, came over the hallway’s intercom. “Yeah.”
“Seal off the library, we can’t let that girl get out into the public. And contact Kara, I need --”
The heavy wooden gym door exploded into splinters. In the middle of the debris, a single, dark haired female slammed into the opposite wall, collapsed to the floor, and lay still. Then Dana stepped through the doorway.
The library was too far. Robin broke into a run toward the nearest door, which led to the reception area. “Jason! Elevator door now!”
Grinning, Dana walked down the hall until she was next to the computer room where Jason was stationed, then put her fist through the wall.
“Jason, get out!” The elevator door was open. Diving in, Robin punched the button for the basement and mentally inventoried the weapons in the ambulance. Nothing non-lethal, but that chance had passed. The question now was whether he could reach them in time.
“Jason, did you reach Kara? Jason?” No answer. He made a few futile jabs at the intercom button, then glanced at the floor indicator. Twelve ... eleven ...
The shriek of rending metal came from somewhere above. Ten ... nine ...
The elevator shook as something -- someone -- landed on top of it. Eight ... seven ...
Robin ignored the sweat running down his face and listened to shuffling noises above. The elevator swayed a bit, but kept going. Then, with a deafening bang, a dent appeared in the ceiling. Six ... five ...
Above him, Dana pounded the ceiling until a seam split, revealing a glow that bathed the elevator in orange. Robin saw her fingers work into the seam, to gain purchase. Four ... Three ...
The ceiling groaned in protest, then began to give. Dana’s grinning face appeared, bathed in the glow of insanity. “A little man ...” She peeled the ceiling back more, then reached an arm in to grab at Robin.
The door opened.
He dove and rolled out, came to his feet, and dashed toward the ambulance. “Kara! Weapons!” But when he jumped through the open back door he found no one inside, and had to throw aside the remains of the box himself, to get under the bench seat. Crossbow -- not loaded, not enough time. Broadsword -- he grabbed it up and turned around.
Dana stood at the back of the ambulance. “Little men.” Her rough, low voice echoed, and not from the basement acoustics. “We'll kill you all. We’ll crush the breath from your lungs.”
“Then he’ll need this.” An oxygen tank smashed into the side of Dana’s head, followed immediately by a tire iron. Kara must have been hiding on the other side of the ambulance. Taking advantage of Dana’s distraction, Robin shoved the sword into her torso with all his strength.
The blade glowed orange, expanded, and dissipated into the air like dry ice. Frowning, Dana gestured, and the tire iron flew back across the room. Robin heard Kara scream, just before Dana grabbed him by the collar and threw him across the room.
A moment later he found himself sprawled against a dented garage door, legs and back screaming, still the only person between Dana and the rest of the world. She walked toward him, smiling, but his body wouldn’t obey his commands to get up. “We don’t need a knife this time, little man. We’ll tear your arms off.”
Then she stopped short, at the sound of a female voice: “Hello.”
The glow dimmed just a little, while Dana turned and cocked her head, looking puzzled. Another female approached, this one a blonde, but just as naked as Dana. She walked hesitantly, dragging one leg, and an arm stuck out at an unnatural angle. Her head was also cocked to one side, but seemed incapable of straightening, while her skin was torn and scarred in dozens of places.
“Hello,” she repeated. “I’m Buffy S-S-Summers. I’m a slayer. I take ass and kick names. Are you a s-slayer?”
For a long moment Dana stared. When she spoke, her voice was very close to normal. “You’re not real.”
“Are any of us real? I haven’t taken philosophy. I dropped out of the world to save college. Are you a slayer?”
Dana blinked, then nodded. She took a step back when Buffy came within arms length, tried to stop, and stumbled, almost hitting the other girl.
“I need maintenance,” Buffybot explained. “Do you need maintenance?”
Dana frowned, then nodded.
“Are you a slayer?” The robot gave a crooked smile.
Again, Dana nodded.
“You’re naked. So am I. That’s considered socially unacceptable in most countries, but it gives us something in common! Willow says slayers statistically have a ninety-three percent greater chance of being lesbian or bisexual than other females. She did a study. Are you lesbian or bisexual?”
Dana shrugged. “We don’t know. Maybe ... I don’t like men.”
“Willow says she likes men, but she loves women. You’re a slayer? Will you be my friend?”
“I ... I am a slayer. You’re a slayer.”
“Yes, I use weapons. I’m a hot fighting momma.”
Robin would have laughed, if he wasn’t hurting so much. Past the undercarriage of a van he saw Kara stirring, and gestured for her to keep still. The glow continued to slowly fade.
“I’m a slayer,” Dana repeated slowly. “I’ll be ... your friend.”
“You look upset. Have you had a bad day?”
“Yeah.” Taking a deep breath, Dana gazed around, her eyes reflecting hurt and confusion. “I’ve been ... so lost ...”
“I’ve found you. You're not lost anymore.” Stepping forward, the Buffybot enveloped Dana in a gentle hug.
Robin held his breath, thinking the well meaning robot had gone too far. But, after standing stiffly for a moment, Dana put her arms around Buffybot and returned the hug, then began crying softly. The orange glow brightened for a moment, making Robin close his eyes, then faded away completely.
When he could look again, Robin saw the two girls crouched together on the floor, holding each other tightly while Dana sobbed. Buffybot’s head and limbs were straight, and she looked completely healed -- at least, on the outside.
So did Dana.