Buffy fanfiction; Willow fanfiction
Joss owns 'em. I'm just borrowing them.
Note: For those squeamish with the thought of
suicide you might want to skip this story.
Willow's life and thoughts after the season six ender
'Grave' and her time in England.
Of course, firstname.lastname@example.org Let me know what you
I paid the cab driver
and looked at the house. It wasn't very lit but in the
evenings it never was. Buffy was usually on patrol and
Dawn spent most of her time in her room listening to her
I knew I had to walk
up to the front door and knock right at this very
moment. If I didn't, I knew I would chicken out and ask
the cabbie to take me someplace else. Where? I didn't
know. But any place but here sounded good. There didn't
seem to be any movement inside as I climb the porch
steps. I knock but no one is coming. The back door was
usually unlocked so I decide to make my way back there.
As I expected, it's
open. I take a tentative step inside, looking around.
Still no answer. It's
pretty dark inside and it looks like nobody is home. I
take to the stairs to go to my old room. I see Buffy's
name on the door. My room is official gone now and maybe
I am too. With an unsteady breath I open it and take a
look around. No Buffy here either. As soon as my foot
enters my mind remembers. I make my way over to the
window and I see it's been repaired. My fingers trace
the glass and I can hear it. I can see it. And I can
feel it. All over again.
But I don't want to
dwell on it. Focus on living Giles told me. Focus on
living. Focus on living. I look around and I see
Buffy's planner on her desk and I make my way over. I
see all of Buffy's pictures with everyone over there.
Well, everyone except me and it feels like the final
nail in the coffin. I pick up the planner in the hopes
of seeing where the gang might be.
Suddenly I hear the
front door open and the planner falls to the floor but I
don't bother to pick it up. I race down the stairs.
Maybe someone's home.
"Dawn? Did I hear
I look around but
there's nothing. No one. What the hell? Again Giles
comes to mind. I might not be wanted but I'll be needed.
They have to be here at some point so I might as well
get comfortable, I figure.
As I lay down on the
couch I didn't realize I was this tired and I close my
eyes. Anxiety is draining and to be honest I've been
anxious since I knew I was coming back here. I figured
my wait would be over after I got off the plane. I would
know where I stand as a scoobies, as family. Seems yet
again I was wrong.
+ + + +
When I wake up I
notice the room brightly light. It's morning now but
still no one seems to be home and if they are they
didn't wake me. No. They can't be here. If someone came
home I would have heard them. I wouldn't have slept that
soundly. I wonder if Giles has heard anything. It would
also be nice just to hear a voice. Home eight hours and
I haven't seen a single soul. It's already getting
lonely. I go to the phone and dial.
calling for Giles - ah Mr. Giles, Right. Council
meeting all day. No, no. I know, he can't be
reached there. Thanks. Bye."
I'm a bit concerned at
this point. Someone must know where they are or at least
what's going on. Maybe something happened. Giles said
bad things were on the way. Maybe the bad stuff got here
before I did. I consider my options. Xander is probably
working but where was another question. Yeah the high
school over the summer but his crew might have moved on.
The only other person that might know. That's it.
I take a deep breath and I square my shoulders. I need
to get it over with at some point anyway. I go to the
front door and head to the Magic Box.
It's a shorter walk
than I remember. Or maybe I'm just dreading actually
finding someone. Maybe I don't want to hear the news.
Maybe things are really bad. Maybe things are beyond
repair for me and they really are avoiding me by leaving
As I walk up I see
Anya coming out with a box. Great! Someone is still
looks scared and starts to back away. Shit. No wonder no
one met me. Maybe they all feel this way. "Anya,
don't! Don't run away."
She still looks unsure
as she asks, "What are you doing here? I thought
you were with Giles studying how to not kill
"I just got
"Just got back,
as in you're all better, or just got back to bring about
a fiery apocalypse of death."
confess. ",but I-I have been studying,
working real hard. A-and I-I'm gonna be fine."
"Oh. Good. 'Cause
I remember the last time you said that. I've spent a lot
of time since then cleaning the debris out of my
ex-livelihood. Stuff like that."
"Well, yeah, I wanna help any way I can with that. I-I
feel really responsible."
Finally she's calm
enough to walk toward me. Or maybe she's just pissed off
and doesn't care. I watch her sneer grow as she comes
closer. "You feel really responsible? You ARE
"I-I know I hurt
you and-and everyone. I'm sorry." I wish I could
give her more. But there really isn't any more I can do.
you should know about vengeance demons: We don't group
with the "sorry." We prefer "Oh, God,
please stop hitting me with my own rib bones."
Well that would do too
"Go on. Say
whatever you want. Rib bones and so forth. I-I deserve
"Then you won't
mind?" All I can do is shake my head no. I really
wouldn't and I do feel a bit overdue for a major butt
kicking. And she certainly should be one of the first in
line. "Well, then, that's no fun," she adds.
say with a shrug.
I take a seat on the
curb and I watch Anya give me a sigh and sit down,
putting the box she's holding behind her. A horned demon
skull catches my eye and I pull it from the box. I don't
know why I'm so nervous. I don't think Anya would follow
through on the rib bones comment but then again. Anyway having something to touch and divert
my eyes seems to help. I'm having a hard time looking at
her after what I've done.
"So, um, where is
everyone these days?"
"Well, I'm back
in my own apartment. And, of course, vengeance takes me
all over the world. I was in Brazil yesterday. They love
Suddenly the horn I'm
touching breaks. Uh Oh. I wonder if she'll notice if
I just set this back inside real gentle like.
"And the others?
Dawn, and, uh, Xander, Buffy?"
Casually I try to put
it back in the box but she watches my every move. Yeah
I'm busted. I can't seem to do anything but destroy
what's hers and I wait for the comment. But it doesn't
"You haven't seen
them?" she asks.
guess they're still mad at you. They've been a little
temperamental lately, just between you and me. We had
this little mix-up a few days ago, and , "
I really don't want to
talk about vengeance anymore. I need answers. "That
sounds great," I say interrupting her. "So,
um, where do you think they'd be?"
"Oh, at the new
high school, probably. Everyone's all about the high
school. Buffy's got some kind of job there helping
junior deviants. Spike's insane in the basement.
Xander's there doing construction on the new gym-."
what in the whatment?"
Xander does construction. He likes to start
early, so he's probably there by now."
I give her a nod. At
least it's a start. They must be around someplace.
"Look Anya. I've got to try to find them so I have
to take off but I'll come by later a-and help you clean
up or, something."
to clean. This is about the last of it. Building
inspector shut me down. Guess they're afraid the roof
may collapse on the customers. Silly, I know. It's only
a few missing joces."
I give a sigh. Damn I
feel horrible about it all. I reach out to stoke her
arm, telling her so, but she pulls away slightly.
Immediately after she looks uncomfortable.
"I'm sorry Willow
you just... You scare me a little. You know?"
"I scare myself
now and then," I tell her. "I don't blame you
for feeling the same but I-I'd like to have the chance
to make it up to you. To all of you... That's if I-I
ever find them."
Damn it. This is
turning out more difficult than I thought. My eyes
shift to my boots. How am I gonna repair all this?
What am I gonna do? I'm frustrated. I'm sorry. I'm
scared. But suddenly, for some reason, I feel a pair of
arms wrapped around me.
Willow," Anya says softly. "Now just don't go
blowing things up again. Okay?"
What an Anya
statement. I find myself starting to grin as I return
the hug. "Thank you," I tell her sincerely.
"A-And I promise no blowing things up."
I pull back and she
has a slight grin on her face.
"I better get
going," I nod behind me toward the street.
finding them," Anya says as I start on my way.
reply, giving her a wave in parting.
If Anya can try to
forgive me maybe there's still hope. One down. Three
+ + + +
I walk toward what
looks like a construction pit but there's absolutely no
one there. I'm not sure where the gym was set to go but
this looks like a good enough place as any I'm assuming.
you down there?"
I spot a ladder and
decide to get a closer look around. Maybe he can't hear
me from up here with the traffic. Once I'm on the ground
again I look around searching but nothing. How is it
possible that everyone just dis- . . . Holy God!
After my shock of
seeing the skinless body in front of me wears off I
wonder if what I'm seeing is real or maybe just a
figment of my guilty conscious. With no Xander around I
figure my next best bet would be Spike. Anya said he was
insane but then again Spike never really was playing
with a full deck anyway. Not that I can talk after all.
I've had my share of moments lately. Especially now if
I'm seeing skinned bodies that might not be real. But if
it is real, and I think it is, I have to find the gang.
I make my way inside
the school and I seem to 'blend' with the students who
are rushing about. There has to be a way to get
downstairs. I see a door marked Basement. No Student
Access. Yeah. No doubt. Crazy vampires live down there
according to vengeance demons. With that thought I
actually pause a moment to realize how bizarre my life
truly is but I don't dwell on it. I push the door and go
inside. I walk amongst the shelves and extra classroom
equipment, looking for any signs of life... or
jump at the sound but find Spike standing before me.
"This is my place," he continues. "You
need permission to be here. You need a special slip with
Anya's right. He
did flip. "Spike. My God... I-."
"You go off and
try to wall up the bad parts and put your heart back in
where it fell out. You call yourself finished, but
you're not. Worse than ever, you are..."
How did he know? He
wasn't even around then. Seems the scoobies are still
talking to him at least.
He paces back and
forth but then stops tilting his head as if he's
listening to someone. But no one is around. He looks a
confused for a moment and he's not the only one. I can't
put a finger on what he's even thinking. He starts to
talk again but he's not facing me.
"You went away.
You've been gone since..."
"I needed to
go," I tell him, still not sure if he's talking to
me or not. "But I'm back now. And I found...There's
Is there blood?
"Uh, I, Yeah, and I can't find Buffy or Xander or
Dawn. And there's this thing killing people. And the
victim was...skinned. What could do that?"
"You did it once.
I heard about it."
Word does travel
quick in this town. "Anything other-other than
Spike starts to smile
walking away from me again, talking to the door.
you...glowing. What's a word means "glowing"?
He has official
lost it. "Spike?"
"Oh, ah, no.
I-I-I should hide. Hide from you. Hide my face. You know
what I did."
"What you did?
You didn't do anything...did you?" How could
you? You're a vamp not a witch or, a vengeance demon...
talking to me. No one's talking to each other."
Spike turns to face me
with suspicion heavy in his eyes. He's gotta help me
here. I have to try to get through to him.
try to listen to me."
here," he said confidently, pacing around.
"Button, button... who's got the button? My money's
on the witch." He turns sharply and faces me.
Does he think I did
this? Oh Hell maybe I did do this? How I'm not sure but...
No this is just crazy. Spike must be
rubbing off on me and I realize this is fruitless. Anya
was right. Nobody's home in Spike's head. I wonder what
brought this on but I've got bigger problems to try to
solve at the moment.
"I gotta find
them Spike. I'll try to stop by after I get it all
I turn and walk a ways
down the corridor and I find him still pacing and
talking. I shake my head. Maybe his attack on Buffy sent
him over the edge. He had disappeared. I remember bits
and pieces of conversation I heard before I left to go
to England. Most of my memory of that time was bits and
pieces but I do remember Dawn saying he left town
according to Clem. Wherever he went it certainly seemed
to have an affect on him.
I realized that I
could do a locator spell. I could find the gang that
way. I try first with Xander and Buffy using the dirt
floor as a map and a photo of the three of us I kept in
my jacket. I use my power to concentrate and when I open
my eyes I find myself but no Buffy. No Xander. What
in the world is going on?...I've got no choice.
I've got to go to Anya again. If I can't find the gang
then maybe I can find this demon.
+ + + +
"I don't have any
"I don't want
money," I say as I walk inside Anya's apartment
without an invitation.
"Come in. Enjoy
my personal space," she says shutting the door.
I don't have time to
'spar' with her. I need answers. "I found a dead
body near the high school."
"Yes, that can
happen," she nods.
horrible killed a boy. Took his skin right off."
you?" we both ask each other. "No!"
"Well with the
skin thing," Anya starts in on me. "They're
definitely going to think it was you. Buffy is,
I nod slightly.
"Yeah. I mean maybe she already does. I don't know.
I just-I-I have to find whatever did this. I just-I need
to do something right."
I've spent so long
putting myself together and I don't want them thinking
I'm evil again once I do find them. I have to find this
thing first and lead them there.
"Oh, and so
they'll think it wasn't you, right? I mean that has to
be part of it. Maybe you're even thinking you kill this
thing, they don't even have to know about it. Won't
suspect you, even for a minute."
"No, I-I don't-
When did you get all insightful?"
Just lacking in
tack I guess. "So, will you help me?"
"Is it difficult
So much for
sensitive. "Not at all. Just a simple locator
spell. But I-I need someone else to do a demon spell
with me. Will you help?"
Anya gives me another
sigh. "What do I have to do?"
Minutes later I've got
the candles lit, the blinds closed and a map of
Sunnydale between us.
"This isn't going
to get all sexy, is it?"
I look at her, trying
not to roll my eyes. "I'd be shocked." I reach
for my supplies before turning back to her. "OK. Do
you have your powder?"
"Oh, I ate
that," she answers before giving a small grin and
adding, "I have it." She shows me the bag and
waits on my instruction.
"OK. We scatter
it over the map, and everywhere there's a demon, a
little light appears."
"Oh, pretty! Will
it hurt the carpet?"
least I don't think it will. It never did before.
We dust the map and
several glows fill in the map but there's a bright
cluster located in the center.
me! Hello." Anya adds as she's pointing,
"What's that huge clump?
"It's the high
school. It's all hellmouthy underneath."
"Things have been
stirring there lately. Is it getting brighter?"
Yeah it is and it
looks like-Oh Shit! "Smoke!"
I jump to my feet and
stomp out the fire with my foot. Anya bends down to see
the damage and I cringe. This woman just isn't safe
around me no matter what.
"Ah! OK! Remember
our talk about the carpet?"
I examine the map
trying to pin point a location. Well that and by looking
at the map, it avoids the whole carpet talk
be it. It's strong. It's near the body, and it's all by
itself, hiding in the woods or-or maybe cave. There are
a couple of good caves around there."
"I don't know.
Sounds pretty thin to me."
"Well, that's why
you teleport over there real quick like a bunn-." Don't
say bunny. Don't say bunny. ",real quick
and, uh, see if I'm right."
"No. Sorry. You
damaged my carpet."
"Anya, you're a
vengeance demon. Just teleport!"
"Well, as it
turns out, teleporting isn't a right, it's a privilege.
I withdrew a vengeance spell last week, and this is my
punishment. I can only teleport for official business. I
have to file a flight plan and everything."
"Oh. I'm sorry.
That must be hard."
"Yeah, it bites a
pretty big one. And the vengeance itself, i-it's not as
fulfilling as I remember."
must say I'm shocked. "Cause I got the impression
that you enjoyed, y-you know, inflicting."
pain sounds really cool, I know. But turns out it's
really upsetting. Didn't use to be, but now it is."
"Is it like
you're scared of losing that feeling again. And that
having it be OK to hurt people. And then you're not in
charge of the power anymore because it's in charge of
"Wow, that was
really over-dramatically stated, but, yeah, that's
"I get it.
Believe me," I nod in support.
Anya purses her lips
and tilts her head. "I'm sorry, Willow. I wish it
were better for you."
I watch as a playful
smirk comes to Anya's face. "It did get a little
sexy, didn't it?"
Hey, maybe I still
got it. What the Hell am I thinking? This is Anya for
Gaia's sake! "I have to find this
monster," I tell her quickly, trying to make my
escape. Anya and sexy just shouldn't mix.
I make my way to the
door as she starts to speak. "Willow...um, isn't
there another spell? I mean, you're trying to find Buffy
and Xander. Couldn't we use a spell to do that?"
Damn. She's not
giving up. She's still in pursuit here. "I did.
I-I tried, and something went kaflooey, and it didn't
"What did it
"It said they
I exit and close the
door behind me. No more spells. Not right now. No more
Anya. Not right now. That was just... scary. And
living on the Hellmouth I've seen some pretty scary
things in my time. But that was... ewghh,
+ + + +
I look inside the cave
before I enter. There's a small light from a fire but I
can't see much else. I slide into the small opening and
look around when I hear a voice.
I continue to search
but nothing. Absolutely nothing.
"Look at the
shorn lamb. See how she trembles. Is it the cold wind?
Or is it that the flock is nowhere to be seen?"
Okay I'm getting
freaked here. Maybe this was a bad idea. Maybe I should
have found Buffy first.
"Poor little lamb
Okay. Okay. I'm
officially freaked out. I hear a noise behind me.
"What's going on? Who's there?" Suddenly I
watch the entrance being blocked off by rocks, sealing
me inside as I race over. "No! Stop!"
I struggle with trying
to free the rocks when I hear a cackle behind me. This
is not good. This is not good. Okay concentrate.
"No way out now.
No way out."
Okay. I spell. I
need to do a spell. "Protect me, Goddess. In
thy name, I supplicate myself. Take the powers from my
enemy, and lay him lower than the lowest field."
spells. He keeps them as pets. They love him. And they
leave him alone."
I try to push the
rocks away with my hands and my mind but it's useless.
They're too big and I'm not calm enough to move them
through magic. I've gotta make a stand here.
"You may be
immune to magic, but I've got more than that," I
tell the unseen voice. "You wanna fight?"
left you here. No one comes to save you. They wanted me
to have you."
The singsong tone of
his voice is unnerving but I try to push it aside. Be
strong. Be strong. You can do this. You can do this.
"Did they leave
you as a gifty for me? Are you a tasty little gifty?"
"Or did they just
throw you away?"
Wait a minute! He
saw them? "Were they here?" I ask.
"Were my friends really here? I heard
The voice doesn't
answer and an intense pain rips across my stomach. I
stumble back against the rock wall. My feet can't
support me any more and I fall to the floor. I look up
and I see him now , green, rubbery and sharp
black claws , ugly as sin. This is certainly not
good. Not at all. He starts again with the singing, the
taunting but my limbs don't seem to be moving. The slice
caused some kind of paralysis.
"They were here.
Here they were," he taunts. "And there they
went... Gone, all gone, what a pretty song... They sealed you in with me. I love a gifty.
Can't wait to unwrap it."
I see my blouse being
moved away and he leans over starting to lick me.
"Gnarl makes a
pretty picture. It's easy when you know how. It's easy
when everyone helps. They helped me. Too bad there's no
one to help you."
I watch as he tears
piece after piece of my skin away, savoring every bite.
There are lots of ways to die in Sunnydale but this has
to be one of the worst. But I won't die. I'm determined.
I've got amends to make yet. Yeah maybe they're mad but
they wouldn't do this to me. They wouldn't.
leave. They'll return," I try to tell the demon but
it's not very easy when you can't move your mouth.
He starts to laugh.
"They don't want you. Lock you in, nice white
skin... And if they do return, where will they find you?
Inside me, you'll already be... Aww... love
It's not gonna end
for me this way. It isn't. I'm going to see them again.
All of them , Buffy, Dawn, Xander. I can't die
not telling them, not letting them know how I feel. I
can't and I won't. I moan again, trying to will my
feet to move to defend myself. I begin to run through a
list of spells in my mind. Something that might stop or
slow the paralysis. I hear something but I'm unable to
turn my head. I watch as Gnarl leaps up and a few
moments later Anya is standing over me.
here. Can't you see her? She's hurt!"
Who the hell is she
going right through her. What's going on?"
Good question. What is
Remember what I said. Get him in the
Finally, Anya leans
over me. "Willow, I'm here. Wow, you're really
the demon over there, see. But if they get too close,
I'm gonna have to run."
here. Buffy and Xander."
"They came? They
didn't leave me?"
"No, they didn't
leave you. They can't see you."
Oh God! Thank god!
I feel myself start to tear up. "They're here.
They're here. I'm not alone."
doing really good."
I watch as Anya looks
toward the back of the cave before turning to me again.
"Oh, Buffy killed the demon. It was gross."
"I can...I can
move!" the paralysis is gone but so is the numbing
effect. "Oh..." I want to grab my stomach but
I can't. That would be bad. I'm not even sure I want to
look at it.
here." I watch Anya say over her shoulder.
"OK, stand back. You're getting your feet in
I watch her shake her
head and rise to her feet. "She's hurt really bad,
you guys. I'm gonna go get help."
I watch Anya leave the
cave but I feel better knowing that Buffy and Xander are
here even if I can't see them. I want to see them again.
More than ever.
"If you can't see
me then chances are you can't hear me either but I want
you guys to know how sorry I am. A-And I'd give just
about anything to see you again. I wasn't ready before
but I'm ready now. I'm more than ready now. I've felt so
lonely when I couldn't find you guys and I looked
everywhere. And the demon said that you left me
and," Suddenly Xander and Buffy materialize
in front of me. "Oh, there you are. There you are!
Don't go away."
"We're not going
away," Xander says before looking at my stomach
Oh, God? Oh God is not
Almost as if she
sensed my unspoken hysteria Buffy adds, "It's gonna
be OK, Willow. You're gonna be OK."
Yeah I am. And I know
"I know. You're
+ + + +
When Anya had returned
she brought Spike and Dawn with her. Buffy took my
shoulders and Xander took my feet as they lifted me from
inside the cave while Spike, Anya and Dawn steadied me
out, making a human/demon gurney with their arms to
slide me from the cave. It was tough going but I made
it. Spike offered to carry me, or in his latest
language, offered to give the bird a hoist because the
sandman was coming. Whatever.
It was odd really. He
fluctuates between babble and making perfect sense, kinda reminded me of myself a few months before
actually. I passed on his offer because staying upright
seemed like a better, less painful plan. So leaning on
his shoulder, as well as Buffy's, we made it out of the
woods and to the road.
Dawn brought the Jeep.
Buffy was going to chastise her for driving since she
didn't have a license but I told Buffy I saw the way
Anya drives and they did make the safer choice when all
was told. We piled in, dropping Spike off at the school,
who'd sat in the cargo hold talking about the need for
butterflies to make their homes on fire hydrants. Again...Whatever.
I didn't pay it much
heed. Each bump in the road was hell on my stomach. But
Xander sat on left, Anya on my right with both of them
stroking my hair, telling me we were almost home. Once
at the Summer's house, Dawn went out back to unlock the
front door as Buffy and Xander helped me out. I never
realized how much higher the Jeep sat until I had to
slide out with a little hop, the effects of which caused
a shooting pain around my stomach and up my back.
Once inside Anya
helped get my coat off while Dawn readied the couch.
Buffy sent Xander upstairs for some antibiotics and
bandages. This really wasn't how I was intending our
first meeting to go but life on the Hellmouth never goes
quite the way you expect. Leaning on Buffy I quickly sit
down and lay flat on my back. I didn't want to take my
time. It was going to hurt so I might as well just get
it over with as quickly as possible.
Buffy pulls up my
shirt and she acts like she wants to reach out and touch
it, to make it better but she stops herself.
I ask looking down. I can finally see it in the light.
It's a beauty all right. At least my new skills and
spell-casting abilities will come in handy later. I look
back up to see that Xander's returned with first-aid
supplies in hand.
"Maybe we should
take you to the hospital Will?"
I don't know how it
happened. I don't know why it happened. But I just start
crying hysterically. A growing sense of panic seems to
sweep over everyone in the room except for Buffy.
"She's not going
crazy again, is she?" Anya asks. "She told me
she wasn't all better yet."
really not done being evil," Dawn mutters. Both she
and Anya take a cautious step away from the couch.
Buffy totally ignores
their comments or movements and brushes my hair behind
my ear. "What's the matter? Is it your stomach?
What's wrong Will? Talk to me here."
managed to get out. Buffy's hand darts away but I reach
out and take it. "No," I tell her trying to
calm down enough to speak. "You called me Will. I
thought you'd never call me that again. I'm not upset.
Well I-I am upset but i-it's happy upset, not sad upset.
I didn't think you'd ever speak to me again to be
"I know I didn't
speak to you while you were in England but I,I
didn't want to hurt you. I was pretty angry Willow. I
won't lie. I was mad. But I never stopped caring. Not
"But this week,
when Giles told you I was coming back, I
heard him. He asked if you wanted to speak to me,
Buffy is already
shaking her head. "I told him I wanted to talk to
you face to face when you got in. Of course I
didn't plan on all this," she says motioning to my
did I," I confess. "I'm just glad that you don't hate
me, or worse, don't care
about me. Because I love you Buffy. I love all of you
and I did so much damage here. And I'm sorry. But I'm
not sorry for me. I'm sorry for you. You believed in me.
You all had faith in me and I destroyed that in the
course of two days and I don't know if I'll ever get
that back. I'm sorry for hurting you. I'm sorry for
scaring you. I'm sorry for everything."
I'm on the verge of
crying again but I stop as Buffy uses the back of her
fingertips to wipe the tears that are already on my
"We know you
are," Buffy told me.
"Do you? Because
Giles told me I might not be wanted here but I'll be
needed. I went to my room , my old room, a-and
all your stuff was there. A-And all your pictures and it
shouldn't be a big deal but there's no pictures of me
there anymore. A-And when I couldn't find you-."
"I didn't put
them up when I moved in there. I thought we could pick
them out together when you got back."
"So you want me
to stay? Because I-."
Buffy stopped me. "Your old room is set up. I
switched because, well, I didn't think it
was good to keep you in the room where it all started,
or ended, Dawn and I took the
things that were Tara's and we packed them , like
her journal, some clothes, things like that. They're
upstairs in the attic next to mom's stuff. We didn't
want you to have to deal with it. I hope you don't mind
Will we just-."
Buffy. Thanks for going through it for me."
and for what it's worth I'm sorry. I'm sorry for making
you doubt you still had a home. You do. And all of your
things are waiting for you upstairs. I hope you stay but
it's your choice."
"Of course I want
to stay. I didn't think you'd want me around."
"We've missed you
Will," Xander tells me. "We all have."
says pulling out Xander's sign from the side of the
couch. "We had a welcome all ready."
I look at it and a
grin widely. "Yellow crayon."
"Told ya she'd
get it," Xander muttered to Buffy.
"So I still have
a home?" I ask Buffy.
"You still have a
home Willow. And a family that loves you."
+ + + +
I'm sitting in my
comfy PJ's meditating or at least trying too. I feel her
presence near me before I even open my eyes. I can feel
her looking at me. Last night Anya gave me some
painkillers with codeine that pretty much knocked me
out. This morning I'm awake but not feeling much better.
I sense Buffy start to move away from my door and I open
call out making her stop.
"I-I'm sorry. I
didn't mean to interrupt."
"That's all I had
left in me anyway."
She looks like she's
not sure how to start the conversation but I give her
"I didn't realize
meditating was such hard work."
healing," I tell her. "Growing new skin."
I watch as she walks
deeper into the room. "Wow. That's magic, right? I
mean, most people when they meditate don't get extra
skin, right. 'Cause Clem should, like, cut back."
I grin warmly. Cute
joke. She takes a soft seat on the bed being sure not to
move it too much.
magic," I tell her. "I'm drawing power from
the earth to heal myself."
"We're on the
I chuckle. Practical
Buffy as always. "You know Giles says
everything's part of the earth. This bed. The air.
"Explains why my
fingernails get dirty even when I don't do
"Plus you stuck
your thumbs in a demon."
It feels wonderful to
just be able to talk with her. To joke with her. Sure
it's not a rip-roaring laughfest but it's a start. I
close my eyes and lean back against the headboard,
resting my eyes.
out. I-I should go."
"No. Please stay.
I missed you so much when I couldn't find
"We missed you
too. I missed you. Dawn's, uh, working on what caused
the mutual no-see-ums, but so far we haven't- ."
"I did it."
"You did a
She starting to put on
her lecture face and I know I have to explain. "I
didn't mean to. I-I just remember thinking I wasn't
ready to see you guys yet. I was afraid we wouldn't, you
"So, you made it
happen just by thinking it?"
"Guess I have a
ways to go before I master my powers, huh?" I'm
trying not to let my self-doubt show. Giles told me to
be confident and the others might follow. I'm trying. I
"It's OK. As long
as you're all right," she tells me.
"It's nice to be
forgiven. Too bad I need so much of it."
Buffy gets quiet and I
can see she's debating on her next words. "I have a
confession to make," she starts. "I thought it
might be you. With the flaying."
"I know," I
answer with a nod.
"I wanna be the
kind of person that wouldn't think that. Xander never
"He did, a
little. Heck, I did a little. Xander has the luxury of
not saying it, but you're the Slayer. You have to say
stuff like that. It's OK. It's OK too if you still don't
think I can recover from this magic stuff, 'cause,
honestly, I'm not that sure about it either."
So much for
confidence. But that's okay. Honest seems to fit me
better and I'm still listening to that voice in my head.
Now if only I could fix my stomach. Damn my stomach
hurts. I'm wiped but I can't quit. I resettle myself and
close my eyes.
"I thought you
were too tired?" Buffy asks as she watches me start
to meditate again.
I open my eyes and
look at her. "It hurts too much not to try."
"It just takes so
much strength. I don't have that much," I confess.
The last day has worn me out.
"I got so much
strength, I'm giving it away," she grins.
At first I can't
believe what I heard. She would be willing to give me a
hand? "Are you sure?" I ask.
Buffy settles herself
across from me and takes my hands in hers. She closes
her eyes and we begin to meditate together. Almost
instantly I feel her strength surge through me as well
as a sense of loyalty, devotion and warmth I imagined
was long dead.
Yes it is good. It's
good to be home.
I | Part
II | Part
III | Part