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The Core, Part Three is the twenty-third issue of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine comic book series. Written by Andrew Chambliss and illustrated by Georges Jeanty, it was originally published on July 10, 2013, by Dark Horse Comics.


Dawn's life hangs in the balance, and Buffy will stop at nothing to save her little sis. Willow, Xander, and Buffy reunite to save the girl they love and begin a journey that reveals betrayal amongst the ranks as they descend into the mysterious Deeper Well, former home of Illyria and many powerful Old Ones.[1]


Simone and Severin descend into the Deeper Well. Overwhelmed by Illyria's stolen power, Severin mistakenly calls Simone Clare. Meanwhile, Buffy and Willow decide not to help the Magic Council fight the Siphon and jump down into the Well, leaving Xander behind with a demon.

In San Francisco, Spike is enraged at finding out the memories of Dawn he recorded on the tape recording have become static, and he blames Andrew for giving him a bum recorder. He is also frustrated he has forgotten her name. Dawn interrupts Spike and, showing her has become transparent, she tells them she's disappearing.

Continuing their descent, Buffy and Willow notice neither of them can recall the name of Buffy's sister. Illyria and Koh also move down the Well to try to stop the Siphon. Xander begs the zen demon guarding him to let him go down and stop the Siphon too, but he tells Xander to accept his place in the universe. Xander receives a phone call from Spike, who informs him the Slayer's sister is disappearing and he is giving him a chance to say goodbye. Xander also can't remember Dawn's name.

Severin is at the center of the Deeper Well drawing power and calls out for Simone's help, but she has left his side, saying she has her own reunion planned. Buffy follows Willow through the tombs as Willow seeks the magic she needs to save Dawn. Willow begins glowing red and excitedly tells Buffy there might be enough magic in the Well for everyone.

Xander tells Dawn not to worry because Buffy will figure everything out. He says that, even if Dawn fades and everyone forgets her, she is still a part of him, and he will never stop fighting for her. Dawn smiles at this, but she is no longer able to hold the phone and her arms are both fading. Spike finally tells Xander that Simone has been turning Slayers into zompires.

Simone cuts herself to summon Maloker, the Old One who sired the first vampires. Everyone in the Well hears a loud roar. Buffy and Willow stumble across the empty tomb, and Willow convinces Buffy she should go and do her Slayer duties while she gets the magic for Dawn. Buffy hesitates when she remembers when Willow left her without saying goodbye, but she agrees to go when Willow promises she won't let Buffy down.

Maloker fights off the Council, and Illyria and Koh slip past them to find Severin. Buffy mistakes Xander for Maloker and almost attacks him, but he warns her of Simone's plan. Buffy recognizes the Slayer Tessa as the extra strong zompire who attacked her. Xander asks why Buffy is bleeding, but they notice it's not her blood when they find Simone's lifeless body on the ground. Buffy realizes Simone's real plan and moves her Scythe to slay her prone body, but Simone reaches up and stops Buffy, breaking her wrist. Simone is now a Slaypire.




Organizations and titles[]





Death count[]

  • Simone Doffler, sired by Maloker.
  • Unidentified demon, bisected by Maloker.

Behind the scenes[]


  • The Core, Part Three was the 122th best selling comic issue in its publishing month, with 20,768 sales in July 2013 at comic specialty stores.[2]


Pop culture references[]

  • Simone sports the Comedian's badge on her hat.
  • Andrew has a poster of the Ghostbusters on his wall. 
  • Buffy refers to Simone and Severin as the Wonder Twins.



Cover artwork[]



Dawn: "It's not his fault. I'm disappearing."
Xander: "And what about my fist? Where is its place in the universe?"
Xander: "You're part of me. And as long as you're part of me, I will never stop fighting for you."
Willow: "Maloker."
Buffy: "Why does that sound like a name Giles lectured me about?"
Willow: "It was a name Giles lectured you about."