Vampire Stories, story 3
BtVS / Buffy/Willow/Xander
Summery: There are some who know what happened. There are some who have also been betrayed. Enter Giles, Jenny and Cordelia.
Intervention, part 4.
Disclaimers and warnings are listed in part 1 and still apply.
The moon was waning, half fading. Jenny Calendar was seated on the small balcony outside her motel room, watching the moon set in the day and letting the sound of waves on the shore wash the anxiety from her mind. It was warm, beautiful California weather, but Jenny could no longer consider it paradise. A week had passed and she was still in the same motel room her tribe had brought her to that night. Xander's room, they had told her. She gave herself some time to adjust to the sharp blunt reality of just being alive again. Promised herself she would not set out until she could stand. Stand the shrill pitch with which light stabbed at her eyes. Stand the dull roar of sounds that constantly pounded her ears. Stand the pressure of objects against skin, of air filling lungs, of loneliness. Reality first. She had eternity for the other thing.
She had made all the inquiries, purchased a laptop for research, her mind assembling the details to regain her balance. Indeed, there had been an earthquake in Sunnydale and the area was now only a crater. She didn't bother to see it again for herself. She asked the motel staff offhand questions: her friends, separation in the natural disaster, did they overhear anything that might tell her where they could be found? It was enough when put together. The sudden disappearance of three. Letters left in her room. The others headed for Cleveland. She didn't understand why they would go to Cleveland until one of the waitresses jokingly mentioned that they kept referring to it as hell.
Having the general location, the laptop readily supplied the specifics. Keywords in the search: watchers, slayer, Rupert Giles. There was a website and a mailing list. There was even a live journal. The language of the entries was carefully couched and coded in a way that anyone 'in the life' as it were could easily understand. This wasn't Rupert's doing. Even if she could fathom the idea that somewhere in the passing of years, Rupert somehow made the leap to the age of technology, there was an informality and even humor present. There were others involved. Younger others. Maybe, she had a chance at pulling him away.
Digging only a little further gave her what she needed: an address and even his phone number. She must have stared at her phone a hundred times. This... this needed to be done in person, and there was just no way to warn someone that their ex was back from the dead and wanted to come see them. No way that she could think of and between putting off dealing with what she had been pulled from the dead for, she had thought of little else. She was used to dating, before. She had been good with dating. And great with exes: the seeing them again occasionally if the sex was great, or if not, at least remaining civil. But with Rupert it was left at something just becoming more than simple dating. Maybe it was that their relationship formed on the precipice of hell, but it was falling quickly into something deeper. Then... it just shattered. Even then, like some 'thing' Buffy was always facing, it started to reform, join together seemingly of its own. She felt the fear of it then and the call of it now: love. She would just have to drop in, say hi and see what happened. So she sat on the balcony watching seagulls scavenge for food and gathered her courage.
She could remember the person she felt she was and it all seemed so farther away than the few years that had evidently passed. She used to love life, loved the living of it. She'd bounce from festival to festival in the summer. She would go out every weekend, seeking the new experience, searching for the next event. The restaurant find, the coffee house concert, all this filled her personal time, before... She remembered she used to love to dance. She could feel nothing of that now. And tucked deep in the back of her mind was a fear that nothing more of it would ever return. The Powers That Be wouldn't be so cruel, would they? It was nearing the time to leave these inert reminisces as a part of the dark haunting that would always remain in this room. Beginnings had to be made, hopes had to be believed and later this evening she would be on a flight to Cleveland.
* * * * * * * * *
A series of profane expletives streamed in rapid succession from Willow's mouth.
"Willow!" Buffy glared at her friend in astonishment even as a smile began to curve the end of her mouth. "You eat a sailor last night? I didn't even know you knew those words." She was chuckling now.
"Oh, I knew 'em this whole time. Just feeling free to use 'em, now." Willow motioned to the newly purchased laptop resting against her bent knees. "This is really starting to tick me off."
"What is?" Buffy leaned closer to Willow and rested her head on Willow's shoulder to peer at the laptop's screen. They were simply lounging through the daylight hours she thought. Sitting against the headboard next to each other on the motel bed; reading, surfing, the kind of wasting time that generally didn't require creative swearing. "Willow, it's just Ebay."
"No, it's not just Ebay." Willow countered, waving her hand at the screen. "It's one of the few remaining Watcher's journals that didn't blow up with the building. The family either doesn't know what they inherited or doesn't care."
"Why do you want a Watcher's journal? Isn't all that yesterday's news?" Buffy peered closer to the screen to read the details. "Or two century's even?"
Willow tapped some numbers onto the screen and submitted another bid. "I'm starting to build a library for our new place, so I'm trying to gather all the texts I can find about not only Slayers but vampires."
"You think they'll come after us?" Buffy surmised, putting her book aside and focusing on the conversation.
"No, well, not for a long while." Willow hedged. "I don't think they'll discover us so easily. This is more for me, for us. I want to know where vampires came from, what exactly I woke up in the potentials," she paused and looked curiously at Buffy, "why they seem to be mixy things after all." Willow shrugged and smiled. "I have an eternity of days to fill, thought I'd do some research."
"Willow, we know where vampires come from. Giles like gave the whole spiel the first night you were attacked by them." Buffy smiled warmly at the memory. "Of course, you were feeling a little faint at the time. You looked cute, but slightly ill."
Willow playfully pushed Buffy away. "I did great for the first time, slightly in shock but... wait, you thought I looked cute?"
"Adorably shell shocked." Buffy confirmed.
Willow mock glared at Buffy then glancing at the computer, let loose another string of profanities. She keyed in a higher bid and sat back to watch with her arms crossed.
"Of course, that was then..." Buffy quietly and curiously observed.
Willow sheepishly smiled at Buffy. "Sorry. Just find myself in a bidding war again." She settled down and after some thought, remembered where the conversation had turned off course. "I remember what Giles told us, but since then we've learned so many things about the Watchers Council, nasty things, I just don't trust what they say. I don't trust they told Giles everything they know. I just want to find some things out for myself."
"Okay," Buffy nodded her understanding, "so I get the big book gather, but why the creative cursing?"
Willow motioned towards the laptop as if the answer was in bold type on the screen. "Because every time I find an important text, I end up in a bidding war with the same guy for it. So far, I keep winning, but he's really starting to bug me."
Buffy looked closer at the screen then back at Willow. "Which guy?"
Willow smiled, a slightly devilish tint filled her eyes. "Watcher1971."
"Giles?!" Buffy's shock rocked her back slightly before she looked again at the screen almost expecting to see his face.
Willow burst out laughing. "Buffy, this is an internet site. You do remember who Giles is, right? Or did you eat an amnesiac last night?"
It was Buffy's turn to mock glare. "Then who?"
Willow shrugged and watched the time tick down on the screen. "I'm not sure. Someone who survived the First? A wanna be? It is kinda fun when I win, even if it does cost me too much money. Can you imagine the curses that would come from his mouth if he knew who he was bidding against?"
"Um, yeah," Buffy was suddenly feeling a little uneasy. "They can't trace you with all this, can they?"
Willow just looked at her friend and tried to decide whether to forgive the question. "Please, now I'm thinkin' you dined on blonds."
"Come on," Buffy protested and defended, "this is a Watcher we're talking about, some unknown Watcher. I thought we were just disappearing from them, not engaging in cyber battle."
Willow relented quickly, her face softened and she reached out to clasp Buffy's hand. "It's okay, I'm very careful, so no, no-one can trace any of this back to us. Besides, it's good to keep these out of his hands, right? The last thing this world needs is the Watchers Council reforming." Willow turned back to the laptop when it beeped. "Ha! I win again."
Buffy squeezed Willow's hand and smiled at Willow's glow of victory. "Yay, Willow." Her voice held little excitement.
Willow closed the laptop and set it aside on the bedside table. She turned accusingly towards Buffy. "What's that supposed to mean?"
"Last known meaning would be good job," a somewhat flustered Buffy answered.
"No," Willow countered as she crossed her arms over her chest. "No, that was your 'I don't really think this is a good idea but she went and did it again' cheer."
Buffy sat up straighter so she could face Willow full on. "Hey, I'm the original 'put a Watcher in his place' gal, but I don't see why you're bringing their attention and probable frustration and anger on us."
"I know what I'm doing." Willow might have meant the words to reassure if there wasn't so much accusation in them.
"Gods, if I had a quarter," Buffy started then stopped with a short laugh. "Wait, I do have a quarter now for every time I've heard that."
"You've never trusted me." Willow accused, rage shaking her voice.
Buffy laughed again and shook her head. She looked to the ceiling trying to calm her own rising anger and frustration. Closing her eyes briefly, she centered her gaze back onto Willow. "I trusted you every time, Willow."
"Ha!" Willow blindly continued. "When was the last time you really trusted me?"
Buffy couldn't believe she heard her right. Anger flaring again, she tried to cut straight to the defining answer. Shaking her head quickly, she brought her vampire visage in place and stared into Willow's eyes.
Willow looked away quickly. "You do blame me for that," she quietly mumbled towards the bedspread, her passion deflated.
The demon relished Willow's pain but Buffy's compassion cut it down and she pushed it away. She reached out and took Willow's hand, the connection calming and filling. "No, Willow, not really." When Willow looked up disbelievingly, she tried to place thoughts into the best words. "I don't think you getting bit was your fault. And... and I drank willingly enough." Buffy paused and made sure she had Willow's full attention, held her gaze. "I just meant that you got close enough, that it could happen at all because I trust you. I've always trusted you. That was never the issue."
"But there was an issue." Willow wanted to pull her hand away, wanted to return to the anger that could buffer her from the accusations, but the warmth of the connection proved the greater desire. "I was your loose cannon. You needed a witch, your big gun, even a loose one. So you learned to deal with the consequences and lived with the damages. That's all I was to you: a weapon."
"What? No." Buffy pulled herself closer to Willow, let their knees touch, brought her other hand to also wrap around Willow's and rested them on her lap. "You're my friend, my best friend." Seeing a doubtful look cross Willow's face, Buffy searched her memories for proof. "Willow, look at me. I also trusted you with some of the biggest moments of my life. And some of the most painful, too. I... I broke down in front of you. Fell apart. More than once. I've never given that to anyone other than you." Buffy looked away briefly.
Willow clung to Buffy's hands, their connection and her words. Still, she caught the meaning behind the adverted eyes. "Except for Spike."
Buffy's eyes returned to Willow's, sure and honest. "Only because I couldn't turn to you." Buffy smiled and rolled her eyes, humor tentatively returning. "And look what that got me."
"It's just..." Willow ran her free hand through her hair and tried to collect her thoughts. "It just seems that the only thing we've had in common is demons."
"The outside ones or the inside variety?" Buffy cut in.
"You know what I mean." A hurt insecurity still clouded Willow's voice. "And it sometimes seemed that I just created as many problems for you as the demons did."
"Not even close." Buffy assured her. "Besides, I've been known to go off a little half cocked; head first; oops, there were consequences, myself." Buffy smiled as Willow finally grinned in response. "I'd say we have a lot in common. We're a lot alike, as all instant best friends are."
"Instant best friends?" Willow shifted a little uncomfortably even as her smile deepened.
"Yeah. Remember?" Buffy nudged her with her knees. "My first day of school. I saw you at the water fountain. I said "hi" in the courtyard. Found you at the Bronze. I just knew. And that was way before vampires and magic. Well, vampires followed very soon after. But magic wasn't even on the radar."
Willow smiled at the long forgotten memories. "That was the first time, of many I might add, you saved my life."
"I was so panicked when I thought something might happen to you. I almost staked Cordelia in my haste to find you." Buffy confessed with a grin. Her face sobered as she continued with the rest. "Willow, everything that happened to you mattered to me. Mattered very much. Every time you got hurt, it hurt me. I felt it so deeply. That would only happen if we were best friends."
"Then why don't you ever kiss me?" Willow's smile faded and her eyes darted to the bed cover.
"What?" Buffy pulled back slightly. "I kiss you."
"No, I kiss you." Willow corrected and brought her gaze back unerringly to Buffy's. "I always start it. You start things with Xander. But me..." Willow shrugged. "It's like you're just following along because I want it."
"This is a lover's quarrel?" Buffy raised one of her hands and ran it through her hair. "When was this a lover's quarrel?"
"When was it not?" Willow pulled her hands away. "See. We were talking about trust, and... and issues. You still see it as friendship and me with a quirky way of showing it."
"No." Buffy protested as she tried to figure out another way of explaining it all. "Willow," her hand reached up and smoothed Willow's hair away from her face before stroking her cheek. "Okay, I get it. Lovers. I'm just... I'm not used to seeing us like that yet. It's unfamiliar. With Xander, it's just, well, I know how to react to a man. With you... it's just still so strange to want this. Before, I could look into your eyes and I knew you loved me. You did love me, right?" Buffy smiled as Willow nodded beneath her hand. "And I could feel how much I loved you. That part's gone. And I'm not used to how it happens now. That's all. Please, you have to believe me. I love you."
Willow was startled not only by the words but by Buffy's thumb gently caressing her lips. "You love me?"
Buffy continued to stroke Willow's face. "I love you. Please believe me." She leaned forward and pressed her lips to Willow's. Buffy deepened the kiss, pushing them both back down on the bed. Suddenly, she pulled up slightly and started to gently laugh.
"What's so funny?" Willow lay beneath Buffy, doubt coloring her features.
"I'm sorry," Buffy was quick to try and consol. "It's just, I was surprised at how much I was suddenly looking forward to the make-up sex."
"Make-up sex." Willow repeated, her hand moving to stroke Buffy's back as her confidence returned.
"Well," Buffy teased playfully, "we had our first real lover's quarrel, we have to have the make-up sex." She bent down and slowly traced Willow's lips with her tongue before slipping it inside Willow's mouth with a sensual, controlled kiss. Ending the kiss and pulling up slightly, Buffy's lips curled to a devilish grin. "And you won't doubt me again after I'm through with you."
Willow brought her hand up to stroke Buffy's hair. "Doubt is in my nature. You might have to show me more than once."
Buffy's fingers trailed their way up Willow's thigh to her center. "I'll put it on my list of things to do for eternity." As her fingers began stroking Willow's clit softly, Buffy began a slow journey down Willow's body with a series of gentle and exploratory kisses. Willow was right in a way, but once started, Buffy was now far more comfortable with the erotic motions of this dance. The link that strengthened as touch grew intimate was at first comforting and sated the bond of friendship; but now, and somewhere over the passing weeks, the textile expression of deep friendship had distilled to sensations of desires and pleasure. Finally admitting that, Buffy started to investigate Willow's reactions, seeking only her pleasure. She felt Willow's fingers tangle in her hair, trying to urge her forward and further down. She ignored it, pausing her lips' journey down Willow's neck to rake her teeth over and lightly nip at the scarred bite marks. She inhaled the complimenting and familiar scents of Willow's shampoo and soap, tasted the dry cool skin over Willow's collar bone as she continued her slow controlled journey of kisses. She felt Willow's fingers tighten around her scalp and insist she move faster and more directly. Instead she continued her light kisses down the center of Willow's chest, eventually sliding to the side to curl her tongue under the curve of Willow's breast, circling up to the nipple, then slowly crossing to the other breast. Buffy smiled as she felt Willow give up and in, Willow's hand limply falling to the side and her legs parting, sliding open. Buffy continued her fingers' light tease over Willow's cunt, slick and swollen with need. "Buffy?" she heard her name called out as a question as teeth grazed over a nipple before lips started kissing their way down and a tongue dipped playfully into a navel. Buffy looked up into Willow's questioning eyes. Doubt, still? She answered by twirling her tongue over skin, dipping it again into Willow's navel before continuing her explorations. Buffy traveled aside from Willow's center to kiss the inside of her thigh, then watched as she gently pushed two fingers into her lover. Lover. This is how you touch a lover. Buffy felt Willow's thigh twitch against her cheek, muscles tighten around her fingers. Willow's pleasure reverberated in Buffy's core through their connection and she pushed her need aside. Continuing her gentle thrusts into Willow, Buffy restarted her oral explorations down the inside of Willow's leg. She paused at the knee and spent a moment solely on the sensitive underside before crossing to the other knee and a slow, teasing path up and towards Willow's center. Buffy kept her eyes open, watching as Willow's fluttered shut, noticing shudders ripple through her body. She felt muscles twitch beneath her lips, inhaled the now familiar scent of Willow's sex. Memories flooded into her through their connection along with the rising passion and she let them filter in, dropping lips and tongue along the inside of Willow's thigh each time she recalled an aborted impulse to kiss her friend over the years. Her fingers continued their stroking as her lips finally caressed Willow's clit. Buffy smiled as she heard Willow's resounding and emphatic "yes". Caressing with tongue and lips, Buffy sped the movement of her hand, listening as Willow's control slipped and she slid ever closer to orgasm. Willow seemed to explode off the edge and Buffy had to hold her hips down and steady as her fingers continued to seduce wave after wave of shuddered pleasure. With a final kiss just below the navel, Buffy removed her fingers and stretched out beside Willow, gently stroking the hair from Willow' face.
"Wow," Willow dazedly muttered. She searched for something she should say, could say, and settled for what kept repeating through her mind. "What was that?"
Buffy chuckled softly and bent forward to brush her lips across Willow's. "That was me kissing you."
"Over and everywhere and now I can't move." Willow weakly raised her arm and let it drop in example. "I'll never be able to move again."
Buffy wrapped herself over and into Willow's side, resting her head on Willow's chest and listening to her heart not beat, the silence beneath her ear oddly comforting and eerily familiar. "It's okay." Buffy trailed her fingers lightly over the outside of Willow's thigh and over her hip.
"No," Willow protested as she limply settled her hand over Buffy's shoulder, holding her close. "I need to... want to..."
"Good," Buffy gently interrupted and looked up into Willow's eyes. "I want you to."
"Well, yeah," Willow smiled.
"No," Buffy was quick to clarify, "I want you to. I want you."
Willow chuckled lightly. "Then you shouldn't have broke me."
"You'll live," Buffy deadpanned in return.
"When did this change for you? Between us." Willow's mental functions were slowly returning, and questions were still the first to swim through her mind.
"I don't know," Buffy honestly admitted. She held Willow's eyes with her own and watched her reactions.
"Is this real?" Willow quickly followed Buffy's answer, searching her eyes.
"Yes." Buffy watched Willow's shy smile form and smiled herself in response as she felt Willow's fingers run through her hair. "Yes." Questions of her own started to push through Buffy's mind. "When did it change for you?" She waited patiently as Willow's mouth opened and then closed in adverted response.
"College." Willow eventually admitted. "Maybe high school."
Buffy smiled and held Willow closer. "Sorry it took me so long." She watched a surprised joy cross Willow's features. "And Xander? Has best friends crossed the line to lovers for you and Xander?"
Willow continued to stroke Buffy's hair as she sought an answer. "I think so. It's hard to tell. I always loved him. Always wanted him."
"Even post 'gay now'?" Buffy teased.
Willow smiled gently with the memories. "Yeah. But Xander's not exactly Xander any more."
"He is with us." Buffy objected.
"It's tearing him apart a little." Willow voiced her concern.
"It is." Buffy conceded.
"And you? You and Xander?" Willow continued these explorations.
"Yeah," Buffy easily admitted.
"Good." Willow's smile was genuine. "Cause he's always been in love with you."
"He loves you, too." Buffy emphasized her remark with a kiss over Willow's heart.
"I know," Willow acknowledged.
"Wants you," Buffy followed.
"That I don't know." Willow weakly challenged.
"I do." There was no doubt in Buffy's tone. "I think maybe all this has been coming for a long time now."
"Really?" The surprise was easily heard in Willow's voice.
"Yeah." Buffy took some time to clarify the sudden thoughts in her head. "I mean I know how I felt about you both every time I thought it would be the end. Looking back..." Buffy shrugged. "Maybe the three of us, this relationship, just got a shove from a strange alternate direction."
"So when there was finally an end it began?" Willow shook her head a little.
"Irony, much?" Buffy chuckled in response.
"The only way I've seen humor as a natural force in this world," Willow agreed. She stretched herself under Buffy and settled back. "Thank god for vampire recovery."
Buffy glanced up at Willow, the incongruity of the statement making her brows knit. "Huh?"
Willow smiled, an evil glint in her eyes. She started to run her fingers over Buffy's spine. "My strength's returning."
"Oh." Buffy's leg started to move over Willow's. "And that means what exactly?"
"My turn." Willow pulled Buffy up to her and rolled them over, bending forward to lightly trace her lips over Buffy's.
Buffy wrapped her arms over Willow's back and opened her thighs, seeking the friction of Willow's leg against her sex. The desire she had carefully and forcefully banked aside cascaded over her. She ached for it, surprised yet familiar with the pain. The deliberate intimacy with which she had touched Willow cut and drove their connection to her core; seven years of their war torn, dynamic and irrevocable bond collected and condensed to the flash point: a desire greater than need and threatening to explode at just the spark of a kiss. "Don't..." Buffy voice shook with effort. "Don't tease me," she pleaded and warned.
"Why not?" Willow raised slightly from the brief kiss. "You kept me on edge for hours."
"Wasn't hours." Buffy pressed herself against Willow's thigh, her body rolling seductively beneath Willow's.
"Felt like..." Willow's words trailed off as her eyes noticed the heated gaze of Buffy's. She felt nails dig into her back. As she parted her lips and before she could form the words, she watched the spark in Buffy's eyes briefly brighten and felt the fingers on her back tense as Buffy pulled herself up and she was suddenly swept in the passion of a deep, overwhelming kiss.
Buffy dropped back onto the bed. Her hand tangled in Willow's hair and held her close. Buffy's eyes stared into Willow's as she licked the kiss from her lips. "Want you," she confessed. "Need you," Buffy paused and searched for the openness in Willow's eyes. In a breathless whisper, she continued the confession, "need you to fuck me, Willow."
Willow not only heard the words but felt them vibrate through her. Her eyes swept over Buffy's lithe body; watched its constant, rhythmic sway. She had never seen Buffy so naked. Willow tensed her leg into the slick pressured rocking against her thigh. She watched Buffy's eyes flutter closed and her body arch beneath her. Buffy's head fell back and Willow trailed her finger down her bared neck, teasing the scars of bite marks. Exposed, revealed, betrayed, forgiven, Slayer, Vampire... impressions concealed in words tumbled through Willow's mind. The moment frozen and intentions forgotten, Willow just stared at the offering. The demon within Willow growled deep from her throat as the traces of Slayer still locked inside Buffy radiated as almost a scent. Willow noticed Buffy's eyes tighten shut, and heard the responding moan escape. The intermission was broken as craving passion ignited and consumed the space between them. Willow's mouth fell to the exposed neck; tonguing, nipping and sucking; human caresses covering and marking over the evidence of demon conquests, willing Buffy to submit to her. Forcefully, confidently, Willow entered Buffy with three fingers. "Willow!" she heard Buffy's cry carry past her ear. She felt muscles twitch, relax, and consent to the intrusion. She kept the rhythm of her fingers slow, drawn and deep; sliding her own body over Buffy's at a matching pace- soft, dry and cool skin teasing and tingling in tangible connection. She fucked Buffy in slow easy motions, the explosion of desire settling into a molten flowing expression of love, compassion and possession. Willow willed it to last for hours as she listened to her name called over and over, but her thumb moved up to circle Buffy's clit, her hand sped slightly of it own accord, reacting finally to the pleading tone in Buffy's voice. Her whole body felt Buffy tense and arch beneath her and she rode the climax, their connection plummeting to their cores as the storm passed and they lay together, exhausted.
A light slumber was broken by Buffy's gentle laughter. Willow stretched and arched then curled back, draping herself over Buffy's body. "What's so funny?" she mumbled directly into Buffy's ear.
"Poor Xander," Buffy answered. She ran the tips of her fingers up and down Willow's spine.
"As in poor Xander missed it? Or poor Xander's been working too hard at the new place?" Willow peeked outward with her vampire senses; there was still a few hours of daylight left and according to her moon calendar, the half moon was probably just setting.
"Oh, I should probably say both, but I really just meant the first one." Buffy clarified. "So, we good now, lover?"
Willow smiled. "I like hearing that." She started to run her fingers randomly over Buffy's chest. "That was... wow. I'm not sure what that was. But good. It's all good."
"Yeah," Buffy leaned forward and kissed the top of Willow's head.
"Xander..." Willow's words faltered.
"Xander what?" Buffy felt Willow's head shake across her shoulder.
"Nothing." Willow switched to clearer thoughts. "He said we'd be able to move in tonight. This is our last day in this crappy motel room. He's been at it all week. We still need furniture, TV, stereo, all that. But he said he'd set up the bed today."
"Yeah, I heard him mention the bed was all we needed anyway." Buffy smiled. "I can't imagine him lasting long without a TV, though. We should probably, I don't know, reward him somehow."
Willow looked up into Buffy's eyes, a slight smirk on her lips. "Reward him how, exactly?"
Buffy grinned and ran her fingers through Willow's hair. "Is sex all you think about now?"
"It does seem to be almost as constant as breathing used to be." Willow dryly admitted. "Even down to the I don't have to think about it anymore." Willow's gaze turned thoughtful. "What's up with that?"
Buffy shrugged. "Like you said before, it's the only way we have of feeling connected. To each other, the world. I know it's the moments when everything feels alright again. Well, that and when..."
"Do you think we'll ever get used to how we are now?" Willow wondered out loud.
"The big empty?" Buffy guessed. "I hope not. Been there, barely lived through that."
"Yeah, me too." Willow dropped a kiss on Buffy's shoulder. "But Xander..."
"What about Xander?" Buffy restarted her fingers through Willow's hair, hoping to coax what was on her mind into the open.
"Last night he left five bodies in the movie theater." Willow pointed out as an example of her concerns.
"He is attracting too much attention, yeah." Buffy intentionally seemed to miss Willow's point.
Willow wasn't fooled and slapped Buffy across her stomach. "You know what I mean. He's..."
"A vampire?" Buffy supplied. "Will, do you feel guilt?"
"No," Willow softly admitted.
"Remorse?" Buffy gently continued.
"You know I don't." Willow tried to bring the conversation back around. "It's just, it's not like him. There's big empty there and he's all used to it." Willow snuggled a little closer to Buffy. "And I'm not. I miss him."
Buffy dropped her arm to wrap around Willow's shoulder. "He comes back to us. It's Xander when he's with us. He's even giving me my kitchen." Buffy tried to lighten the mood.
"Yeah, what's with the need for a kitchen, again? Even I was kinda with Xander on that one." Willow started to let her worry go, finding it very hard to hold on to negative thoughts while the bond pulsed so freely between them.
"It's not a home without a kitchen." Buffy stated. "Homes have kitchens, crypts don't." Buffy's thoughts on Xander continued. "I miss him too, Willow. But he always comes back to us. And 'I missed you sex'?- just as good as 'make up sex'."
Willow smiled. "True. And don't forget the 'thank you sex' we'll be having later tonight. Plus, there's 'goodnight sex' and 'hey, we woke up sex'."
Buffy laughed. "Now you get the idea." She grew quiet for a moment then whispered, "our world really tilted hard, didn't it?"
Willow felt Buffy grow still beneath her and started stroking Buffy's stomach with her fingers. "The Slayer shrugged, yeah." Finding the scar left on Buffy's stomach from that last battle and running her finger over it, Willow wondered aloud, "this never did disappear. Do you feel super Slayer at all?"
Buffy watched Willow's finger trace over the scar. "Violent tendencies without the calling?" Buffy tried to explain. "I feel like an outlaw."
"Cool," Willow surprised Buffy. "I feel kinda outcast myself. My new source, very of the dark and deep. Not evil, just... outcast," Willow trailed off. "We should probably get some sleep." She snuggled closer and relaxed against Buffy.
"Okay." Buffy closed her eyes and rested her arm on Willow's shoulder. "Sweet dreams."
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