|Buffy Season Eight|
|Issue 38: Last Gleaming, Part Three|
|Written by|| Joss Whedon|
|Drawn by||Georges Jeanty|
|Publication date||November 03, 2010|
|Published by||Dark Horse Comics|
Last Gleaming, Part Two
Last Gleaming, Part Four
"Last Gleaming, Part Three" is the thirty-eighth story of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Eight.
Beginning in the aftermath of last issue, Angel is sent backwards reeling from a blow delivered by his and Buffy’s child- the living embodiment of the Twilight Universe. The lion is clearly angered at Angel for his rejection of his role and abandonment of his child- the Twilight Universe. Questioning whether Angel really thought he would get off that easy. He states that Buffy abandoned him for lack of conflict but the earth is clearly waning, soon Twilight- the lion- will soon become something greater than anything she has ever feared or fantasized. Angel says he won’t give up fighting, but the lion says he would have, if not for Buffy, but it is pointless anyway, the queen is dead- mother earth- long live the Twilight universe. Referring to itself as Twilight. It states it was Buffy who set all of this in motion, when she called all the potentials. The lion pounces upon Angel continuing that it is Angel who will finish it. Angel will bring the Seed from Sunnydale to the lion, as it is his soul. Angel refuses to except this saying there will be no Twilight, but the lion says there already is. As Angel is Twilight.
Back in Sunnydale, Willow, Giles, Xander and Dawn have met up with Buffy and Spike beneath the Earth. The Master is getting up from his fight with Buffy, wiping blood from his mouth while the gang looks on. Buffy stands behind him prepared to fight. Xander is questioning why Spike didn’t tell them the seed was being protected by The Master. But he says he didn’t know, all he knew from his sources is that the Seed enslaved a vampire 800 years ago, one Buffy had supposedly killed. But the master says death is nothing to the seed, it restored him when the Seed chose Angelus. Who he expected to be here.
Willow and Giles come to the conclusion that the Seed has been hiding behind the Hellmouth all this time, pulling the Master’s strings, all those lives- all those years- without him knowing. The Master dislikes this interpretation, but Buffy says that it explains the weird face she can’t wait to hit again. Which offends the Master greatly. As does Xander mocking him by relating him protecting the seed to Golem protecting the ring from Lord of the Rings. Defending himself he yells to them all: “You think you understand the seed? You don’t even understand Twilight! Remove the Seed and you doom the world! Has she told you there’s a place in her new world for you? No— she and Angelus will see you all dead!” Which surprises Buffy, leading her to say, that this guy is really challenged on the major plot points, but Dawn says he’s not the only one. Spike then defends Buffy by saying she and everyone else is very much opposed to letting hell pour in, the only problem is the demons are already here, anticipating the seed being taken out of Sunnydale. Above the earth, Faith beheads a demon and Andrew- stabs another demon through the chest. There are still soldiers, demons and explosions going off everywhere above ground, below Dawn is sensing that that things are not going well. As demons arrive behind them, demanding the seed and throwing Dawn into the wall with great force.
Buffy orders to take them down and the gang reacts instinctively, Buffy, Spike and Giles leaping into action, while another demon pins Willow to the wall asking for the Seed’s whereabouts. But she quickly sets him on fire and the rest of the gang eliminates the remaining demons, whilst Xander holds the seemingly unconscious Dawn, calling out to Buffy for assistance. But the only assistance Xander needs is help carrying Dawn who is rather heavy. His comments annoy Dawn who is actually conscious and relatively uninjured, just a little bloody. Buffy instructs Xander to get Dawn to safety and the duo leave.
A cut to Angel reveals that he is in a trance like state, the green light of the Twilight Lion, reflected on his skin. His eyes’ completely white, as if he is seeing a vision. Back at the Hellmouth the Master tells Buffy that it would be wise, with Buffy’s new found strength that they team up to take on what’s coming by protecting the Seed. Cutting him off, Buffy breaks off the end of an axe, telling Spike to hold the Master while Buffy stakes him. Willow quickly interrupts instructing Buffy to think about what’s going on, if these new demons want the Seed removed then the Master who wishes to protect it is an ally. Giles consoles Buffy’s dislike of this idea by telling her that all the earth demons- those who are attached to this world- don’t want the apocalypse anymore then more than the Scoobies. Willow adds that the Master may have the power of the Seed on his side; he can help them stop Twilight. Buffy asks if there is something Willow isn’t telling them about what happened when she fainted. Willow says she didn’t faint it’s more that she was summoned. She also says she’s been thinking about this and she has the idea that since the Seed can connect the spiritual realms to the new Twilight world maybe they can use it to heal the Earth, draw the demons out, to make it a better world.
Just then they enter the circular room in which the Seed sits on its podium, beaming clouds of red light. The Master says that the power of the Seed embraces the worlds and it’s not letting go. As he says this, his eyes begin to change into a furious red and he whacks Buffy and Spike to the ground. The Master explains the Buffy’s power decreases in the presence of the Seed, as one of its defenses. Buffy attempts to stake him again but fails. Willow pleads with the Master who is not taking kindly to Buffy saying they don’t want to hurt the Seed, all they want to do is protect it. Willow tells them that Buffy is weak down here and that she should go above ground where she can do some good.
There is another cut to Angel in which is still in the same state. In Sunnydale Giles tells Buffy that this is what he was looking for in Europe the ‘totem’ mentioned in #34. He had never thought to look in Sunnydale but he says it is the perfect place. He says that a greater power lies behind this trouble, one that can kill Buffy and Angel. He says the Twilight prophecy was unclear but always terrifying. All of this started with Buffy changing the world, there was bound to be some casualties.
Angel is awakening from his vision, with Twilight instructing him to get up and fly. He obeys. On Spike’s ship a disgruntled minion is jumped by General Voll who viciously bashes his head in. Amy and Warren are behind him, Amy explains that Willow’s seal has broken on them, they can leave. She then attempts to heal the General but he shrugs her off saying he never wants to see them again.
Buffy, Giles and Spike reach the surface, but in the sunlight Spike is put out of action and Giles says he won’t be much help either. But there is something he can do. Buffy asks him to stay but he declines saying that Buffy isn’t a girl anymore she isn’t running around a cemetery, he’s proud of her and how far she’s come. But there’s a way he can help but it’s not here. Saying his goodbyes he leaves.
Xander is getting Dawn to the medics, when he does they are met by Voll who says he abandoned Warren and Amy when Xander asks where they are. He then stays to assist in helping Dawn. He asks Xander this is really what he wants for Dawn, this life, he says Xander could be mistaken for a soldier even, but Dawn is not a slayer. He continues that there is apparently a way to stop this, all they’ve got to do is destroy the Seed. All the fighting ends, but Buffy is protecting it.
In the room with the Seed, Willow is performing a spell that is causing the room to fill with a red smoke; the Master is kneeling before the Seed. The spell goes: “Awake in peace! Your eyes that dart the rays of the sun, whose divine power is great on the head of the goddess.” It is revealed that the Master’s hands are chained. “Your heart that is the beat of life, that gives life to all! The Queen of earth undying, the regent in the west, and in the east, the divine mother who ascends to the throne. Let your sworn protector stand against your enemies, keeping evil from those who are faithful to you!” The shot angles on Willow, whose face is bright red from the energy.
Spike and Buffy fight on above, as demons crowd them. There is an explosion which blasts them all backwards. The source of it is revealed to be Angel, carrying the torn apart remains of a demon. Buffy smiles at his appearance but he quickly punches her and throws Spike to the ground. Spike addresses him as Angelus but Buffy says it’s not. Angel turns to them and tells them that he’s not Angel, he's Twilight.
- Dawn Summers
- Xander Harris
- Rupert Giles
- Willow Rosenberg
- The Master
- Buffy Summers
- Faith Lehane
- Andrew Wells
- General Voll
- The General
- Warren Mears
- Amy Madison
Weapons and Objects
- Several Unspecified Demons, killed by Buffy, Spike and Slayers
- two demons, burned by Willow
- a bug demon, killed by general Voll
- a Demon, killed by Angel
Behind the Scenes
- “Wow, this guy is really challenged by the major plot points.”
- ―Buffy Summers
- “You did not just call me heavy.”
- ―Dawn Summers