|This article is about the sentient dimension. For other uses, see Twilight.|
- “I will be more monstrous, more beautiful, than anything she has ever feared or fantasized.”
The name "Twilight" also applied to the prophesied apocalypse which created the dimension, as well as the villainous persona adopted by Angel himself in order to bring about that apocalypse.
- “It-it's just a Watcher myth... A fairy tale.”
- ―Rupert Giles[src]
The entity known as "Twilight" apparently existed in some form since the creation of Earth. The Watchers Council were aware of it, and spoke of a prophecy in which a Slayer would change everything in the world and be granted the power of a god, as well as the chance to bring about the birth of a new world: Twilight. In the 1680's, it appeared as though the Twilight prophecy may come to pass; the Watchers were so afraid that thirty members of the Council committed mass suicide.
Demonic law firm Wolfram & Hart also knew about Twilight and actively worked for many years to bring it about, believing that they themselves would play a crucial role in it. When they discovered the truth was the opposite, they appropriated an interdimensional vehicle and made plans to evacuate the Earth dimension completely.
- “We also, and this is the part we need to keep hush-hush, have set the stage for something bigger making its way here. All this time we thought we were the big show. Turns out we're warm-up. There are big changes coming, and we're, to be blunt, not a part of it.”
- ―Wolfram & Hart executive Lilah Morgan[src]
Angel as "Twilight"
- Giles: “For thousands of years, the universe has been watching, waiting to find one Slayer, just one, who measures up to its test. Century after century, they all meet the same fate. [...] Until Buffy Summers came along and did the one thing that no Slayer, no Slayer in history, had ever done before.”
- Willow: “She shared the power.”
- — Giles and Willow[src]
The prophecy was finally set in motion in the early 21st century when current Slayer Buffy Summers and her friend Willow Rosenberg awakened Potential Slayers around the world, turning them into fully-powered Slayers. By shifting the balance of power in the world so drastically, Buffy had proven herself as the Slayer spoken of in the Twilight prophecy, believed to be the "next step up the metaphysical ladder." Her reward for this would be to gain god-like superpowers, including increased strength, flight, and complete invulnerability; these powers would enable her to bring about Twilight and survive the resulting apocalypse. As the "yin to her yang," Buffy's vampire ex-boyfriend Angel was also chosen for this purpose.
Some time following the restoration of Los Angeles, Angel was contacted by Twilight, communicating through vessels such as humans and animals. It convinced him that in order to protect the world from an inevitable apocalypse involving Buffy's recently-created army of Slayers, Angel would have to adopt the "Twilight" persona and become Buffy's enemy to prevent the entire world from going through what Los Angeles did during the Fall. Angel, who had recently received god-like abilities, reluctantly agreed to work for the entity. As Twilight, Angel believed he had to unite the anti-Slayer terrorist forces in a single cabal under his leadership and minimize the resulting destruction they would cause. His other objective was to become the focus of Buffy's anger and power so that she would meet her true potential.
- “There will be bloodshed. This is inevitable. But you can take her beyond the battle, to a world without war, without constraints. This is your true destiny. Focus her anger. Be the target of her power, and it will come to her. What she feels must be pure; she cannot be distracted by her feelings for you. Until it's time, she cannot know.”
- ―The Twilight entity manipulates Angel[src]
Angel was naturally reluctant to deceive Buffy, but was eventually convinced by his old ally Whistler that not doing so would result in Earth's destruction. Adopting a leather costume which masked his face, Angel recruited various factions to his anti-Slayer army; these included human members of the United States military such as General Voll and Riley Finn, demon evolutionists such as Pearl and Nash, and Buffy's existing enemies, Amy Madison and Warren Mears. Angel attacked Buffy as "Twilight" and told her that activating the Slayers was a mistake, and that she would suffer as a result; he told his followers that he had to strip Buffy of her moral certainty in order to defeat her. He orchestrated various global assaults on the Slayer organization, including a mystical missile attack on their Scottish base and the demonic Swell in Japan.
Having already killed hundreds of Slayers across the world, Twilight/Angel's forces eventually cornered Buffy's core group in Tibet, where they had sought sanctuary with werewolves Oz and his wife Bayarmaa. During the battle against his army, Buffy's Twilight powers were finally activated; she immediately used these powers to attack "Twilight," who had kidnapped her allies Rupert Giles, Faith Lehane, and Andrew Wells, and was horrified when she unmasked him as Angel. Furious at his actions over the previous months, Buffy immediately tried to kill Angel, but his invulnerability protected him long enough for him to explain his behavior. He told her that there was a divine reason why they love each other and encouraged her to give in to that love. A glow begins to overtake them, seeming to drug them and taking away Buffy's ability to fight against it. With Twilight urging them on, Buffy and Angel gave in to their passions; they had powerful airborne sex which caused them to smash through mountains, fly into outer space, travel through time, and even break through the walls of reality.
- “She should be staking him right now. She did it once, to save the world. Now the world won't let her. It isn't just reacting to what they're doing... It's urging them on.”
- ―Willow Rosenberg[src]
The Twilight crisis
Buffy and Angel's love making was the catalyst needed to give birth to the Twilight dimension. As Twilight was born, Earth succumbed to natural disasters such as volcanoes, earthquakes, and cyclones, and numerous hordes of demons were unleashed through inter-dimensional portals to destroy Earth and allow the passage of the new universe. Meanwhile, Buffy and Angel found themselves transported to Twilight itself, an idyllic dimension where they could shape reality with their minds. Though Angel initially planned to comply with the prophecy and remain in Twilight, Buffy realized the dire situation her friends were in, and he reluctantly agreed to accompany Buffy back to Earth.
- Angel: “You do understand that being here is what you're meant for?”
- Buffy: “Don't you know me by now, Angel? I never do what I'm meant for.”
- — Buffy rejects Twilight[src]
When Spike arrived on the scene, he revealed that the solution to the current crisis lay in the ruins of Sunnydale; more specifically, the sunken church where the Order of Aurelius dwelt and where the Master was imprisoned after his original attempt to open the Hellmouth. Inside the church lay the Seed of Wonder, a mystical artifact which drew magic into this reality and sustained the gateways to other dimensions. Spike explained that the Seed predated even the First and is effectively the source of all creation, and its destruction would lead to the end of magic, while its removal would result in an apocalypse; thus, they had to ensure that the Seed remained untouched by both human and demon hands. The Scooby Gang returned to Sunnydale to track down the Seed and avert the demonic hordes, only to discover the Master, resurrected by the Seed, guarding it.
While protecting Slayers throughout the world from the demons, Angel was confronted by Twilight itself in the form of a winged lion; demanding that Buffy and Angel finish what they started, Twilight physically possessed Angel and traveled to Sunnydale. While possessed, Angel killed both the Master and Giles, who were respectively trying to protect and destroy the Seed.
The Seed is broken
Devastated by Giles' death, Buffy beat Angel back and then used the Scythe to destroy the Seed, banishing all of the extra-dimensional demons back to where they came from and ensuring that the Twilight prophecy would not come to pass. However, this action also closed all portals and pathways to other dimensions, leaving Earth effectively cut off from magic. Although the prophecy had not truly come to pass, the Twilight entity and dimension continued to exist, alone and unable to access Earth again.