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The Gateway is the seventh issue of the Fray comic book series. Written by Joss Whedon and illustrated by Karl Moline, it was originally published on April 23, 2003, by Dark Horse Comics.


The wait is over!

Joss Whedon, creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, completes his vision of the future, the story of the future slayer. One of the fiercest battles in the history of comics, drawn in grand style by Karl Moline and Andy Owens, begins the climax to Dark Horse's runaway hit. So what do we have left for next issue? It just gets worse for this poor, young Slayer.[1]


Harth kneels in front of a mound of bodies and drinks blood from a chalice. The ritual to open the gateway is about to begin.

Mel is confident as she stand in front of Icarus. She tells Urkonn to stand down, and announces that she has faith in her victory. She drops her Scythe, then a flying car drops on top of Icarus. Erin clambers out of it. She states that she took one look at Icarus and her intentions changed: she is there to help. Mel asks her sister to find reinforcements for the upcoming battle, and Erin answers she would try. Regardless, Mel is going to fight.

As his ritual continues, Harth chants in an ancient language, and hordes of lurks converges on Versi. In his lair, Harth whispers one word that began the carnage: “Awaken.”

Deep inside Versi, the people are finally beginning to see the truth and are ready to fight. Amma apologizes for hitting Mel, who is visibly shaken by Loo's death. Urkonn is concerned that the battle will become a massacre, but Mel isn't worried, she is going to fight her “last stand.” Erin turns up with reinforcements. As Erin and Mel has a tender moment, someone shouts out… the lurks are coming.

As they come forward, the people rally to fight. Kettie Rawls sacrifices his life for the cause, while Amma and Jove are determined to continue their portion of the fight. Mel is under intense pressure as the lurks continue their assault. Then she looks up and sees a massive creature overhead.

Erin is stunned when she sees Harth riding atop the monster. Urkonn realizes that Neauth is the gateway itself. Erin is enraged and races towards her brother, with Mel at her side. The sky sled that they were on is out of control, and, as they approaches the creature, Mel falls off the sled and into the demon's open jaws.


  • Erin kills Icarus in vengeance of her brother's death, as she learned his destiny in The Worst of It.
  • Amma apologizes Melaka for striking at her, which she had done in Alarums.
  • Urkonn teaches Melaka lurks cannot enter a home uninvited. She'll use this knowledge in All Hell.



Organizations and titles[]




Death count[]

  • Icarus, smashed by Erin Fray with a car.
  • Unknown number of humans, including Kettie Rawls and Bob, killed by lurks during the battle.
  • Unknown number of lurks, killed by humans during the battle.

Behind the scenes[]


  • The Gateway was the 75th best selling comic issue in its publishing month, with 21,049 sales in February 2002 at comic specialty stores.[2]


Pop culture references[]

  • Melaka and Harth used to watch Western movies.


Cover artwork[]


Icarus: "You really think you can put me down girl? What have you got besides a shiny new axe?"
Melaka: "Faith."
Melaka: "Well, I'm fighting. Whatever it is. Alone if I have to… but I'm fighting."


  1. Joss Whedon's Fray #7 (of 8)." Dark Horse Comics. Retrieved on March 10, 2018.
  2. "Top 300 Comics--February 2002." ICv2, February 4, 2002.