| WARNING! MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD!|
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While invading the Safe Zone, Willow Rosenberg discovered that everything produced in the internment camp was sent to a place called the Pandora Project. The workers were working on components and coding for one big machine, designed to drain and store magical energy on massive scale. This would mean a genocide, as various supernatural beings were either dependent on inherent magic for specific abilities or even being alive. The place had offered liberty for those who voluntarily gave up their magic, under the justification this would allow them to be reintegrated in society.
The slayers Buffy Summers and Faith Lehane, the witch Willow Rosenberg, and the vampire Spike invaded the Pandora Project laboratory located under the Sutro Baths’s ruins. It was discovered various animals tested and weaponized with robotics and the mystic energy drained from of supernatural folks (demons, vampires, witches) in the Safe Zone. Various battle suits were also found, with jewels, rune patters, and wood, combining sorcery and technology..
The Pandora Project was compared to the Initiative and its 314 Project, which tried to make super soldiers out of human/demon hybrids, but the Pandora Project just drained the magic energy and applied on battle suits, animals, drones, and eventually humans, like Rudy Diaz.
Willow discovered in the laboratories data on the project’s members. According to it, President Malloy didn’t know about its existence, while Press Secretary Joanna Wise and Secretary of the Supernatural Ophelia Reyes were directly involved, among various scientists. The Vice President was a senior member, so, in search for answers, the Scooby Gang kidnapped and interrogated him. He was only involved as investor, and under a spell that made him unable to tell who was the responsible for the Pandora Project. Still, he revealed they would launching a satellite with a wide-range absorbing array in the very next day, which would drain all magic from everyone in the United States.
It was discovered that Joanna Wise was in fact the leader of the organization: she had been involved in every major decision since the attack on San Francisco, and one of the few regularly in and out of the Project. Buffy, Willow, Spike, Xander, Dawn, and Faith invaded the research facility in Lands End, and found Ophelia Reyes calling for support. While she denied being in leadership of the Project, they were attack by Joanna Wise, revealing herself to be a magic user and, similarly to Rudy Diaz, enhanced as a cyborg. She had spent years grooming her body to hold mystical energy, and wanted the power of a ruler in a world that no one would have access to magic but her. Battling the Scooby Gang, she summoned the Shenlong to attack San Francisco, revealing to be the responsible for the first attack. To be able to defeat her, Buffy absorbed the power of all Slayers, while Willow went to stop the dragon, but Joanna used a ray on the Shenlong to absorb his magic on herself.
Willow had the idea of rescuing the dragon, who, following her plan, immediately sought his power, and Wise declared she would never give up these powers. Buffy kicked the woman into the open mouth of Shenlong, causing it to devour Wise whole and presumably kill her. After the battle, Wise and her plans were publicly exposed, as Xander and Dawn had filmed her during the fight, intentionally hiding the Scoobies. As consequence, President Malloy declared everyone involved in this treason would be punished, and his administration would review all policies regarding the supernatural, with the help of those credited for exposing the conspiracy: Riley and Samantha Finn.
Behind the Scenes
- In Greek mythology, Pandora ("the all-gifted") was the first human woman created by the gods, most known for opening a jar and releasing all the evils of humanity, leaving only Hope behind.