The Kitten, the Witches and the Bad Wardrobe - Willow & Tara Forever

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 6:25 pm 
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19. Yummy Face
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A beautiful day. The most beautiful day. Look around, take it in…take it all in. Revel in it. Breezes move through the trees, tickling the leaves. The sounds of rustling…soothing…soft. Laughter…small giggles. Mixing with the breeze…mingling with the leaves. Moves around, moves through. It’s visceral. But where? Is it real? Can it be trusted? Run from it or stay? A melody in the air. Soft. Light. Peaceful. The warmth surrounds. Take it in. Take it all in. Bask in it. Floating on a cloud…soft…billowy. Willowy…Will? Where? Is she real? Can she be trusted? Run from her or stay? So much hurt. Is it past? Is it now? Is it…is it? Take it in. Take it all in. Ponder it. Touches. Light. Gentle. Like a feather…soft. It tickles without tickling. Goosebumps. Senses stirred. When comes the pain? Will it happen? Run from it or stay? Stimulating. Sensual. Take it in…take it all in. Feel it. Laughter again. Louder. Clearer. Melodic. It sings. It hums. Sun shining, covering the world in warmth and light. Turn to it. Let its rays gently stroke the skin. Become surrounded. More laughter? So close, near me, within me. Look around. Take it in…take it all in. Revel in it. Fingers covered in red…right red. Yes. This is the right red. You’re here. Move closer. Seek the warmth. Skin. So smooth. Eyes. So deep. Lips. Soft, so soft. Are they real? Can they be trusted? Run from them or linger? Breathe in. Fresh. Seductive. Unique….Willow. Take it in…take it all in. Submerge in it. I’d rather flirt with you than anyone else in the world. Move closer. Be comforted. Give comfort. Make promises without words. Are they real? Can they be trusted? Run from them or commit? Binding. Constant. Forever. Yes. Yes. Forever. Don’t be sorry for something we both want. Yes. Want. Longing. Desire. All of it. Take it in…take it all in. Caress it. Hold close. Don’t let go. Promise you won’t hurt her. Can’t promise that. Not possible. But. Will…always love. Will…always cherish. Will…never leave. Not again. I will not screw this up. Pull near…nearer…nearer. Don’t let go. Don’t ever let go. Why did I let go? Why did I ever let go? I’m a bitch. Once. No more. Not again. Never again. Forgive…seek forgiveness. Take it in…take it all in. Worship it. Worship her. Worship us. Smiling. So good to smile. And mean it. She’s worth a bazillion of those dopey smiles. Yes. And more. And more. And more. I will not screw this up. Be committed. Be dedicated. Be determined. I will not screw this up. Talk. Communicate. Share. Always. And always. And always. Warmth snuggles. Softness cuddles. Take it in…take it all in. Crave it. The necessary thing. Willow. Willow is necessary. Willow needs. Willow is needed. I need Willow. And more. And always. I will not screw this up. Pressure. Wanted pressure. Curves fit together. Curves press together. Pressing closer. Leaning back. Leaning in. Pulling closer. Seeking…seeking…seeking. Always seeking. And seeing. And wanting. And needing. And being. In love. Yes. Yes. In love. Always in love. And always. And ever. I am, you know. And always. And ever. I will not screw this up. Laughter turning to giggles turning to murmurs turning to whispers turning to looks turning to gazing turning to falling. Falling. Falling. Into endless green depths. Falling. Falling. Into a nurturing soul. Falling. Falling. Fallen…in love. Don’t be sorry for something we both want. Yes. I want. I want. Forever and always. And always. And ever. Talk. Communicate. Share. Love. Always. And always. Mmmm, Willow.

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 6:44 pm 
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4. Extra Flamey
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Wow! I get dibs on the update??!! How the heck did that happen????

So, Carleen, way to reel us back in. Another dream sequence, another glimpse into Tara's mind. I find myself having to read this outloud (much to the dismay of my sleeping felines) to achieve the full impact of the emotion behind the words. Powerful stuff to be sure. Tara's still afraid, still running. What's it going to take to get her to stop running and just be?

As always, your writing impresses me - both in its fluidity and its profundity.

So very much worth the wait.

Thank you,
Michelle

PS: This different colors for different speakers (Willow, Tara, Buffy) really helped to "hear" what was happening. Nice touch.

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Last edited by mole on Mon Apr 16, 2007 6:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 6:45 pm 
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9. Gay Now
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*squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!*

It's back! It's back! Its back!

*deep breath*

I *loooooove* Tara dream thoughts! They are so artistic-y and freeform.

Awww. She's in love, and I still get the sense that she is really scared... but overall I am getting the 'in love' vibe -- at least in *this* dream, while she sleeps in Willow's arms (that's where we left her, right?),

Hey, it's Willow, loveable-dorky-foot-in-mouth Willow, so yup, I think it's good!

Now that I have read some of the actual conversations that are floating around in Tara subconcious I have a better idea of the color scheme and who says what (white=Tara, red=buffy, purple=Willow) yes?

I am going back to read the last dream. Maybe the color scheme will help me understand what was said before... *so* want to find out what happened in that fight.

Welcome back Car, I sure did miss this fic.

db

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 1:16 am 
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11. Fish in the Bowl
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*dies*

Wow Car, you sure came back ;-) and with another dream sequence! This one was light as the other one was dark but still we get the sense that Tara is afraid, but she's onto the right path: communication. It always helps. (says the one with a degree in communication to the one with a degree in communication :lol) Plus she's in love, and we know Willow is too, so it's all good, right? :smug ... right? :paranoid

This was my favourite part:

Quote:
Will…always love. Will…always cherish. Will…never leave.


I love the double meaning of will as the future and as Willow's name :sigh

Thanks for the great update Car, and for coming back to this wonderful fic... take your time with the next update (but not too much, hear me? ;-) ) and don't worry about people abandoning this fic. It's just not possible.

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 3:04 am 
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3. Flaming O
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I just tuned into this fic and finished reading all that is posted to date. Since my mind seems to work in a list format I will start there.

1. enthralling - characters and concept
(though I agree with Debra about the very begining dream sequence and am now slightly regretting using something similar in my own fic)

2. brilliant - writing

3. roller coaster - of emotions (as you already pointed out)

4. layers - many, many of them

5. stromata - the definition being: a framework for some cells consisting of connective tissue.

Basically, the three main characters are serving as a framework, or structure of support, for the others using the things that connect them, including love.

Even though each structure has been damaged in some way their connective tissue grows back allowing the framework of their respective friendships to remain sound and even to become stronger.

What you have created for Willow and Tara here is what I think we have all wanted to touch at least once in our lives. It is something that grabs us early and doesn't let go, it defies time and morphs with change, and it can hurt us so badly that any well trained psychologist would determine that we had a mental illness due to our inability to function normally.

Okay, that all made sense in my head. I am not saying that it is a mental illness, but if you know anything about the process of diagnosing one it makes sense. You have shown that the hurt inflicted on both girls, Willow specifically, didn't allow them to function normally for a certain portion of time. So, I was trying to use it as a metaphor for the intensity of feeling and loss of control.

6. Buffy - Can she be my best friend too?!

7. Glory - was absolutely insane and spot on

Anyway..... great fic :blush

-Brea

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 2:06 pm 
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8. Vixen
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:thud

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2007 9:51 am 
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You sure have a knack for written dreams ;-) There's no doubt a lot of meaning there that's just flying right over my head, but what I really got from it was the difference between this and the last dream. Whereas the last one felt like it was spinning out of control, falling apart the more it went on, this time it seems like Tara has the answers she needs to keep it intact - perhaps because now she understands the questions better. Maybe it's partly because she's in Willow's arms now (never a bad thing), but I think her talk with Buffy gave her what she needed to feel like she could be with Willow, without screwing it up, whereas before she felt that her ignorance of what Willow had been through - and who Willow really is, now - meant that she was doomed to fail, or at least part of her believed that.

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 6/17/06)
PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 6:52 pm 
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Wow. I was surprised to see an update.

(it still says 06/17/06 in the title). I hope there will be more soon. Yay.

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:22 pm 
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Carleen
I see everybody has taken this last update to be a dream, where I thought it to be a stream of consciousness thingy. I guess it works either way.

I'm intrigued by the different structure you employ here: the actual lack of structure, different colours, etc make it seem the words are just pouring out, reflecting Tara's changing emotions and (I think) sensory perceptions. The recurring thoughts
Quote:
I will not screw this up.
and the shifts in the thoughts that follow them indicate the progression to an acceptance that this love may 'be' again. To me the overall impression is of a moment of intense emotion, triggering frantic thought, giving way to a surrendering of thought to emotional (perhaps sensual?) luxuriating in Willow.

Anyway Carleen, good to see you back with this fic. Looking forward to more.
Thanks
Anne

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2007 1:27 pm 
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9. Gay Now
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Car, when you told me you were updating and I jokingly asked "it's more than one paragraph, right?" and you said "well, it's a long paragraph" and then you said something about stream-of-consciousness, but by then I wasn't paying attention 'cause I was too busy pouting. I should have realized it was another dream, and while I know it's important and well written and I'm happy to see you back writing...but, dammit, when are we going to find out wtf happened?!? :happy

I'm so not going to try to puzzle out the dream, but I was happy to see no big, bold, angry red font. Little italicized red font is okay...seems to be her heart speaking there. And as long as the next update doesn't start out with some future Tara saying "I screwed it up," I'll be content. Great to see you continuing.

-Cam

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2007 10:15 pm 
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AAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh! Sweet! So glad you updated

Quote:
This was my favourite part:

Quote:
Will…always love. Will…always cherish. Will…never leave.


I love the double meaning of will as the future and as Willow's name


I was going to say the same thing. how unoriginal of me.

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 6:32 am 
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I'm still trying to find those ambient sound effects that I thought should go with this update. You know, the sounds of
Quote:
rustlingg…soothing…soft

Quote:
small giggles

Quote:
a melody in the air

but I've got work stuff on my mind and my research ability isn't up to its usual impeccable brilliance (ready to hurl yet?). Even without the ambient mood sounds, the feel of the dream was so peaceful, so right. Even the bits of conversations and the self-reminders were so real, so apt, so powerful. A different sort of powerful than 13a -- 13a was all about guilt and fear and emotions spiralling out of control; 14a has much more of a purpose, it's as if the conversation with Buffy earlier has calmed her mind so much ... or, more likely, being in close proximity with Willow has calmed her frayed nerves.

Even though the story isn't at that point yet, I have confidence that they'll wake up and the sun will be shining in the room and in their hearts. I feel like the worst is over, and they can now tackle everything. Like Bob. Thanks for continuing this fic, it's been a long time coming but so worth the wait.
[br]

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 11:53 am 
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HOLY....

Car.. you updated! I love you.. oh goodness.. Ok im re reading the whole fic again and then reading the update :D Ill leave feedback eventually... swear it! ..oh yea.. if I were a smiley.. this would be me :party

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 4:02 am 
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loved the update!!! i want more lol, i wanna find out wot happened!!! wooooo cant wait for more!

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Tue Apr 24, 2007 10:35 am 
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13. Big Knowledge Woman
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It's great that you updated

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2007 8:37 pm 
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:cry :cry

What??? No more updates???

:gnome :gnome

Arg!

:smash

Please please write some more on this story! It's great!


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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2007 12:14 pm 
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Hello Kittens. I’m sorry this isn’t another update, but I am working on it. Ever since I got my promotions last year, things have been so amazingly hectic for me. Since I find it so difficult to write at home (too many distractions), I usually do most of my writing on the train while commuting to and from work. But, alas, I drive to work these days because I have to get there so early – there aren’t trains early enough for me. But, I’m doing what I can and will try to get chapter 14b up as soon as possible. Thank you all for sticking with me. Now, after QUITE some time…individual feedback.
[hr]
mole
[blockquote]Hey Michelle! Thanks so much for sticking with the story. And Congratulations on the dibs! In all honesty, I’m not fully sure what will make Tara stop running. Perhaps it will be Willow, perhaps it will be Buffy, perhaps it will be restraints. Of course, that is a completely different story. I’m going along for the ride just as much as anyone. I always appreciate your feedback. Thanks again. [/blockquote]
db
[blockquote]Yes, Davya, please breathe. I would hate for the munchkin to hate me because her aunt keeled over after reading one of my updates. Yes, Tara is in love…was there ever really any doubt? And yes, Tara is scared…isn’t that what being in love is all about? The color schemes for the two dreams were decidedly different…for a reason. Though, what that reason is, I’m not telling. (tee hee) Thank you, Davya…it’s always a pleasure seeing your comments in the thread. **kiss**[/blockquote]
Spighy
[blockquote]Oh Val….Please don’t die. That wouldn’t be good. Many, many of us would be quite sad. Yes, another dream sequence. I had to have a follow up in there somewhere. I don’t know why though. Thanks for catching the double meaning of “Will” in that…to be honest, I didn’t intend it at all. Upon rereading it, I noticed the double meaning and thought, “um…wow…I like that.” So I kept it. Thanks for not abandoning the fic. [/blockquote]
BlackIndiaInk
[blockquote]Hi Brea! Welcome to the thread. I appreciate you stopping by and your well thought out feedback. I’m glad my little offering was able to make you want to look that deeply. I think there certainly is loss of control here, particularly on Willow’s part. But I think that fits more with her characterization. This is not to say that Tara was perfectly calm and logical throughout the whole ordeal. We may see some of what happened to her over the past year, but, for now, this is Willow’s story. And, yeah, intensity of feeling is definitely up there when it comes to Willow. Again, thank you so much for your wonderful feedback.[/blockquote]
Kaia
[blockquote] You okay there, Karinna? I hope that thud didn’t hurt. I think I’m going to take the thud as a positive thing…that’s okay, right? I love you, cupcake. Thanks for taking the time to read…I know how busy you are.[/blockquote]
Artemis
[blockquote]Hi Chris! Thanks so much for stopping in and saying such kind words. It’s always a joy to read something from you…particularly your own fic offerings. Where is that Hellebore sequel, anyway? I think you hit the nail on the head about the difference between the dreams. The first was spinning out of control – I’m glad that came through. I definitely wanted this one to have a calmer feel to it, but I wanted to make sure to keep some of the anxieties. As wonderful as lying in Willow’s arms is for Tara, there are still doubts and insecurities. But I think she has a firmer basis for dealing with those doubts and insecurities now. At least I sure hope so. Again, thank you so much for your kind feedback.[/blockquote]
JustSkipIt
[blockquote]Thanks for the reminder on that, Debra. I kinda forgot to edit the title of the thread in my haste to get that posted in the 3 free minutes I’d found. LOL There will be more…how much more and how soon, I don’t know. But I’m trying to work on it as best I can. Thanks again, Debra.[/blockquote]
spells42
[blockquote]Hi Anne. Thanks for your feedback. While, yes, this is a dream, it can certainly work as stream of consciousness – that’s actually how I wrote it. I know that kind of structure doesn’t work for everyone. But, for my purposes in this particular fic, it’s the only one that worked for me. Writing it in a coherent narrative, with proper grammar and punctuation, just didn’t have the “feel” I wanted the dream sequences to have. And I definitely wanted the readers to feel. So, hopefully, that worked. Thanks for being patient and sticking with my little story. It’s greatly appreciated. [/blockquote]
tarawhipped
[blockquote]Hey! I warned you! When have I ever lied to you? I told you to be prepared for a short update. But, I’m glad you read it anyway. As for what happened, I’m wondering if I’ll ever tell. I’m kinda having fun with the mystery. Hmmm…I’ll have to think about that…see what watty has to say on the subject. But, rest assured, a future update will not have Tara saying “I screwed it up” – I live for your contentment. Thanks again, Cam…Love ya, goofball.[/blockquote]
singgirl
[blockquote]Hey now, like I mentioned to Val, I’m just glad people picked up on that bit of double meaning. Particularly since I didn’t until well after I wrote it and was proofreading. So, no worries about being unoriginal or anything like that. I just appreciate the feedback from you. Thanks for sticking with the story.[/blockquote]
watty
[blockquote]Hey there, beta-girl. Thanks for stopping in. No worries about the ambient sound effects – I think they’ll just get too confusing. And I do a pretty good job of confusing people on my own. LOL I think you got it right the second time – it’s Willow who calms her mind and her heart. While the conversation with Buffy certainly went a long way toward Tara’s understanding of the situation…and of Willow…she was still restless. She couldn’t sit still; she couldn’t slow her mind down. It was being with Willow that allowed her to clear her mind and just…be for a moment. Tackling Bob…yeah, still gotta do that, huh? Why don’t you write that part for me? LOL Thanks again, watty. I love ya, you bloody brit.[/blockquote]
WiollowRTaraM1
[blockquote]I’m so glad to see that you’re excited about the update. Sorry there isn’t more to it. But, hopefully there will be more soon…and by more, I mean longer than a paragraph. Thanks again.[/blockquote]
Thianne
[blockquote]I’m glad that you’re glad, Vale. Hopefully, I will be able to update again soon. Thank you for stopping in. [/blockquote]
ellbogen
[blockquote]I’m sorry there haven’t been more updates in a while. But I’m trying. I just have so very little time these days. But I am working on it…really. Thanks for popping in.[/blockquote]

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 05, 2007 12:23 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 8:14 am 
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10. Troll Hammer

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Car, Dear Car, How descriptive you are!

Hello, scribe and companion in brain-storming! ("Car, my brain's storming. Can you loan me your umbrella?" "Sorry, Mary, my own cerebrum is absolutely flooding right now!")

I guess my only complaint is that you never give us a sense of their interior worlds, Car. It's always subject/verb; subject/verb. Honestly, does Hemingway always have to win out?

Heh...

OK, so you know how I love a good dream/abstract sequence. You capture the randon and supremely non-linear nature of our minds, esp. concerning matters of the heart. So I wasn't surprised to find myself floating along in Tara's mind, seeing what she sees. (Next time, though, I'd like to float along between her legs and I can't believe I just wrote that but apparently I'm going to let it stand.)

Here's what I love most about this, though: the excellent and many-varied use of the name/word "Will." You have Will as name; you have will as verb; you have will as noun. Obviously, there's Willow herself. And then there's what Tara will or will not do within that relationship. And finally, the growing trust in Tara's own agency and volition and determination: by virtue of her will, she can make this happen. She can do the right thing.

So glad to see this, sweetie, and so thankful for the consult the other night. Rockage, thy name is Car.

Mary

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 10:39 pm 
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Quote:
I’m just glad people picked up on that bit of double meaning. Particularly since I didn’t until well after I wrote it and was proofreading.


acidental genius huh?

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 6:13 pm 
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whatmakesyouhappy
[blockquote]Thanks so much for stopping in! I'm glad that the prospect of an update from me has brought some light to your day. I just hope I can get it up soon...and that it's worthy. I appreciate your enthusiasm. Thanks for reading.[/blockquote]
AntigoneUnbound
[blockquote]**sigh** I love it when you leave feedback, Mary. You always know how to stroke my ego. And it's been so long since I've had anything stroked...but that's a story for another day.

Anyway...ahem...thanks for your assessment, Mary. I always marvel at how much you can see in the offerings on this forum. Point: you found a THIRD meaning in that "Will" section...I didn't even notice the second, and you see a third. Amazing.

Can't wait until we're able to do some more brainstorming, Mary. I'll get to work on that special challenge for you too....Man, I want to read that story! Thanks, again, my friend.[/blockquote]
singgirl
[blockquote]I wouldn't call it genius, but it was certainly accidental. ;-) Thanks for popping in![/blockquote]

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2007 6:41 am 
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The thud was definitely a positive thing. And it'll take much more than that to kill me (or at least permanently injure me...although I'm pretty sure I'm capable of doing that on my own *sigh*).
So, yeah...april. Last thud was in april. I think I am ready for another one in august. So...what'cha say?

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2007 6:50 am 
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I'm doing my best, cupcake....I'm doing my best.

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 1:25 pm 
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:pride

An insight into the mind of someone with life regrets?

Thank you for visiting dream central...

...now back to our regularly scheduled 'update'...


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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:51 pm 
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I really love this fic and can't wait till you finish it!!

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2007 4:36 pm 
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Mestiza
[blockquote]Hey there! Welcome to the thread. Let's just say that I hope this isn't too much of an insight into my mind. I'm working on the 'update' and hope to have it ready soon. I just need my beta to keep telling me what I'm writing is okay. Thanks for your time![/blockquote]
rowanstar
[blockquote]Well, hello! I'm glad you're enjoying the story. That makes me happy. As for finishing it...while it will be finished, I just don't know how quickly it will happen. There are ways that I can end it in just a couple more chapters...and other ways that I can make it last for another 20 chapters. We'll just have to see. Thanks so much![/blockquote]

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 4:14 am 
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Wow! :thud :thud Awesome story... update-y goodness soonish? :pray

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 4:39 pm 
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Hey there,

I was busy with real life for the past... oh, three or four years, so I know how incredibly difficult in can be to keep up with writing.

But I wanted to come out of lurkdom to say that I really love your fic, and I'd love to see it continue for many more chapters... so my vote is closer to the twenty than to the few to finish.

I love AU stories, and I love seeing Willow and Tara outside of the incredibly stressful lives they were originally written in. Your fic is wonderfully true to who these characters are outside of that world, and I love to see that.

Take your time, make your story what you want it to be, and I'll be patiently waiting to read the rest.

M.


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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 7:26 pm 
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Zampsa1975[blockquote]A double thud! Gosh, thanks so much. I'm sorry it's taken so long for an update -- real life sucks sometimes. As does writer's block. But, I snapped out of it enough to start working on chapter 14b tonight, so hopefully there will be something soonish. Thanks again![/blockquote]
chance[blockquote]Thank you so much for the understanding. Yes, real life certainly gets in the way. I'm very honored that you came out of lurkdom to comment on my story. I really, truly, honestly appreciate that. Clearly, I took my time. LOL But, I can just hope that I'll be able to get out of this writer's slump for a while and get this story moving down the road. Thank you again...so much.[/blockquote]

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 Post subject: Re: New Fic: Coming Back (Updated 04/16/07)
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 8:01 pm 
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Title: Coming Back
Author: GayNow (Carleen)
Email: cmspry2@gmail.com
Feedback: Pretty please?
Distribution: Archiving is fine…please let me know where so I can call all my friends and yell, “Look! I’m famous!”
Rating: I’ve moved the rating up to R for language and situations
Disclaimer: BtVS characters, concepts and dialog belong to Mutant Enemy, Fox, The WB, UPN and others. The story, however, came out of my delusional little brain.
Summary: AU....no Hellmouth...no magic....no demons...no slayer....Willow and Tara made a solemn promise to each other 8 years ago.
Author’s Notes:
  • This is my first attempt at fic writing...or posting what I've written, anyway. And I have all of you wonderful kittens to thank for inspiring me. I'm not going to start listing off all of the individual authors, because that would just take too long. You know who you are...you've read my feedback...it's no secret who I worship.
  • I have to give special, super-dee-duper thanks to the lovely WATSON for her incredible patience with me.
  • Thanks also to AntigoneUnbound who always, and I mean ALWAYS, asks how the writing is going…and never makes me feel bad for not having an update.
  • Thoughts in italics
  • Thanks to Chris Cook for the super spectacular title graphic!
******************************
Chapter 14

What a night.

Buffy had been lying diagonally across her bed for the last hour, simply staring at the ceiling. She thought over the last few hours spent with Tara – recalling and reliving the pain and angst of the last year had been emotionally draining, to say the least. But, she felt oddly invigorated by the experience. It was as if a burden had been lifted. She’d lived that year vicariously through Willow…and Tara…and, of course, Dawn. But the pain she felt…that was no figment of her imagination; it was real. The number of nights that she had cried herself to sleep – after staying on the phone with Willow while the redhead cried herself to sleep – were innumerable. But now…now she could feel the healing begin. Her mind and heart felt somehow cleansed.

And yet…

There was still a niggling in the back of Buffy’s mind – one tiny, minute fleck of annoyance that just wouldn’t leave her in peace. Regret. Oh, she would soon get over it, but right now, there was regret. The sooner she could get past the regret, the sooner she would be rid of the niggling. The sooner the better. What she had told Tara was the “capital T” Truth. There were no falsehoods, no hyperboles, no tall-tales, no little white lies. Buffy had laid it all on the line – she held nothing back. And, because of that, there was the niggling. While she felt like she had known Tara for years, she really hadn’t. Anything she truly knew of Tara came through Willow. Yes, they had communicated over the years through email. Sure, they had considered each other friends. But always, always through and because of Willow. It was as it should be – to each of them, Willow was the most important variable in the equation. The depth of the love they each had for Willow was equal – or nearly so – it was simply the motive that was different. But everything still came down to Willow.

Now, in the quiet of her room, without Tara before her – heartbroken and sobbing – she began to second guess her actions.

Maybe I shouldn’t have said anything, Buffy thought, biting her lower lip and furrowing her brow in concentration. She got up and paced about the room. I mean, isn’t it Willow’s job to tell Tara what happened? What gives me that right, really? Buffy stopped her meandering and set her jaw firmly.

“I’m her damned best friend…THAT’S what gives me the right,” Buffy said aloud as she met her own determined gaze in the mirror. Her confidence began to falter, however, when she remembered that she wasn’t Tara’s best friend. More niggling. Honestly, this niggling was being a pain in the ass.

I was too hard on her – I had to have been too hard on her. God, the look in her eyes. It probably would have hurt her less if I’d slapped her.

Buffy remembered the expressions that passed over Tara’s face as the two talked. If an emotional roller coaster could be made manifest in human form, it would have looked remarkably like Tara that night. Buffy hadn’t seen that kind of pain since…well, since Willow. It looked remarkably similar, and yet, completely different. “I don’t know what to think anymore,” Buffy sighed as she began to shed her clothes. The process was a slow one – the removal of each piece of clothing hampered by the whirling of thoughts through her mind. She’d plopped down onto the edge of the bed to remove her socks, but got delayed as she replayed a portion of the conversation with Tara.

‘I would have stayed.’ I’m sure that was full of all kinds of accusatory sentiments. Must have really made Tara feel better by saying that, she chided herself, but then shook her head as if to slough off the offending thoughts. “No,” she whispered, rather unconvincingly, “that conversation was not about making Tara feel better. It was about making Tara understand. She needed to hear that.” Buffy caught her reflection in the mirror as she stood to put her clothes in the hamper. Again, she stumbled over what she thought was conviction.

Didn’t she?

“Yes, she did, dammit,” Buffy said, her voice firm. No matter how much it hurt to tell, and now matter how much it hurt Tara to hear it, Buffy needed to say the words. It had to be her who told Tara what happened. Willow would never tell everything – she’d leave out the details. Buffy was sure that the redhead would gloss over the parts that might hurt Tara even more. But that’s not how it works, my friend, Buffy directed her thoughts toward Willow, deeply asleep in the room down the hall. All of the pain needs to be out there – not just yours. For as much as Buffy was intent on protecting Willow, she was just as adamant about not protecting Tara. It was time that everything was on the table – and Willow had put her heart out there for everyone to see a year earlier. There had only been glimpses of Tara’s…and it was time for show and tell.

Her eyes moved to the picture that was stuck in the frame of the mirror – high school graduation day. We were so happy that day. Buffy smiled as she remembered the difference between the Willow from her first day at Sunnydale High and the Willow from her last day at Sunnydale High. The change over those two years was…wonderful. Not that there was anything wrong with Willow when I first met her, Buffy assured herself, she was just…lonely. She and Willow were inseparable during those two years – they filled a void for each other. They were friends, best friends, confidantes, sisters.

“No, I was right,” Buffy said firmly, lifting her chin in defiance and standing up straight – as if daring her reflection to argue with her. “I told Tara what she needed to hear. For Willow’s sake.” A knowing smirk formed on her lips. “For both their sakes.” With a renewed bounce in her step, Buffy tossed her clothes in the hamper, grabbed her robe and made her way to the bathroom – confident in her actions.

Thirty minutes and a hot shower later, Buffy was finishing her morning routine and slipping on her shoes, ready to head out for the day. She checked herself in the mirror one last time, ensuring that her make-up sufficiently disguised the darkening circles under her eyes. That’s as good as it’s going to get, I suppose, she thought, I definitely need to get some sleep tonight. She sucked in her cheeks and lifted her chin, turning to examine her profile in the mirror. Her cheeks puffed out and her shoulders slumped as she let out a quick breath. “I’ll be 25 before I know it – so much for my youth,” she groaned and headed out her bedroom door.

The house was quiet as she walked down the hallway. After the previous hours with Tara, the silence seemed out of place. Whenever she thought about that month with Willow, she relived the total experience in her own head. Every time Willow had cried. Every time she had cried with Willow. They were all there, played out in the Dolby Surround Sound of her own mind. So now, the quiet was odd.

I’m sure Tara’s mind is blaring at the moment, too…especially after all I dumped on her.

Buffy stopped outside the door to the guestroom Tara was using, debating whether to look in on her friend or not. For all of her big show of being hard on her blonde friend – in the name of her redheaded friend, of course – when it came right down to it, Buffy was really a highly sensitive soul. And she knew it. The potential for Tara to “cut and run” based on what had been discussed the night before was high...if it were anyone else but Tara, that is, Buffy thought, hopefully. She knew Tara would have reason to run, to yank herself out of the situation and never look back.

And Buffy also knew that if that were to happen, she would be the catalyst for Tara’s departure. Well, then Tara simply wouldn’t be the person we thought she was…good riddance, the confidant, defiant part of her mind proclaimed. But, ultimately, the loving, sensitive side won out…it always did. And if Tara disappeared again, Willow would completely break – and so would I if I had to watch that happen to her…again. Shaking off the thoughts that were threatening to take her down another road of pain and depression, Buffy gently tapped on the door in front of her.

“Tara?” she called out softly, not wanting to wake the blonde should she be sleeping.

The door gave way from the gentle pressure of Buffy’s hand and creaked softly. She placed her hand flat on the door and pushed slowly inward. The bedside lamp was still on in the room, affording Buffy the opportunity to view the room clearly.

“Tara?”

Stepping fully into the room, Buffy immediately noted that she was alone. Apart from the opened suitcase and the walkman tossed on the bed, everything was the same as she had left it earlier. Except when she had left it earlier, Tara was still there. Well, her things are still here, so she didn’t leave…I hope. Buffy looked around the room, briefly searching for clues to Tara’s whereabouts. Seeing none, she shrugged and headed back out to the hallway.

Across the hall, Willow’s door was open – not fully, but enough to allow a person to slip through. I wonder… Buffy crossed the hall and slowly poked her head into the room. The quickly approaching daylight was replacing the moonbeams through the window, allowing Buffy to clearly see the scene before her.

After the night – the year – that Buffy had just experienced, she thought for sure there were no tears left in her body. But, for the first time in a very long time, Buffy welcomed the tears that sprang to her eyes now.

Two highly familiar forms cuddled together in the middle of the bed: Tara was tightly pressed against Willow’s back, wrapping herself snuggly around the redhead’s slightly smaller frame. For her part, Willow had Tara’s hand held firmly, still pinned between her cheek and the pillow – her arm kept Tara’s pinned against her torso, as if she was holding the blonde prisoner. That’s the happiest prisoner I’ve ever seen, Buffy thought, a knowing smirk coming to her face. Tara couldn’t get any closer to Willow short of actually becoming Willow – the arm that wasn’t being held hostage by her sleeping companion was curled up between herself and Willow’s back, her hand tangled in soft, red hair; her head was buried between Willow’s shoulder blades; and her lips seemed locked in a permanent smile.

While the smile on Willow’s face was not identical, it held just as much emotion -- she was calm, peaceful, content. It was…amazing. Willow was happy every day that she received a letter or email from Tara. Willow was ecstatic when she learned that Tara was going to come visit her for two weeks. But nothing compared to the sense of pure bliss radiating from the redhead – even in her sleep. Buffy couldn’t see their legs under the blankets, but based on the outlined shape, she was sure they were equally tangled together.

Any tension that was in the air when Buffy and Tara were talking had been sucked away, leaving only serenity. Oh, Buffy was sure the tension would be back…there was still so much to talk about, to hash out. There would be more yelling, there would be more confessions, there would be more confrontations, there would be more tears.

But for now…for this moment in time…there was perfection.

“Way to go, girls,” Buffy whispered with a smile. “Way to go.” The niggling that had been lingering in her mind began to fade away. As she turned from the beautiful scene before her and made her way out of the room, Buffy heard Tara murmur Willow’s name in her sleep. Her smile broadened and she skipped down the stairs and out of the house – the niggling was gone. My job here is done.

**********

She was warm. But it wasn’t uncomfortable. There wasn’t the need to throw off the blankets or remove clothing in order to cool off. No. It was definitely comfortable. More comfortable than she had felt in ages – perhaps ever. Her skin never felt more alive. It tingled. It felt good. It felt more than good…it felt right. More right than she had felt in ages – perhaps ever. She felt surrounded and surrounding at the same time. She felt safe. She felt protective. She murmured in her sleep and snuggled closer to the tingling warmth, content to remain in her dream. It wasn’t often these days that her dreams were pleasant, and she didn’t want to wake from this one – not after the last year; not after everything that was said and done. She simply wished to remain safely cocooned in the land of dreams. She wanted to take it in. She wanted to take it all in. It was time – time to feel good again; time to heal. But right now, she just basked in the glow around her. In the love around her. That penetrated the deepest – it had been so long since she’d felt that kind of love permeating every part of her being.

“Mmmm, Willow.”

The voice brought her to a sense of awareness. A voice? Mmmm, don’t wanna wake up. Willow kept her eyes closed as she wiggled closer to the softness behind her. She pulled the warmth more tightly around her, a subconscious physical vow to not lose this comfort. The feeling of fingers gently tangling themselves in her hair and brushing against the back of her neck made staying asleep impossible. Rather than being jolted into consciousness – in shock or surprise or fear – Willow drifted softly from the comfort of her dreams to the comfort of reality. Real. Finally, this is real. She turned her head slightly to kiss the soft hand that she cradled under her cheek and smiled at the realization that she had not let that hand go since the moment Tara had offered it. She stayed. I asked her to stay and she stayed.

Nor had she moved since Tara had joined her. And she was okay with that. Rather than feeling tense from remaining in one position for so long, Willow was more relaxed than she could ever remember feeling. She took a quick inventory of body parts, subtly tensing and relaxing her muscles – just to make sure she wasn’t imagining this near euphoric state. In doing so, she put forth a determined effort to concentrate on Tara’s body parts too. Nearly every part of their bodies was in contact. Tara was pressed firmly to Willow’s back – her fingers tangled in red hair; her lips nestled at the base of Willow’s neck; her arm wrapped tightly around Willow’s body; her lower body curved to fit perfectly against Willow’s; her calves and feet tangled comfortably with Willow’s. Heaven, Willow thought as she sighed and, simply unable to restrain herself, placed another kiss on Tara’s hand – not that she ever wanted to restrain herself.

Willow lay contentedly, listening to the gentle sounds of Tara breathing. It was a soothing balm for her bruised soul. Tara’s breath on the back of her neck made Willow shiver and she continued to snuggle impossibly closer to the soft body behind her. Even in her sleep, Tara was aware of Willow’s presence and tightened her hold on the redhead, once again murmuring Willow’s name.

Oh, I could definitely learn to live with this…I think I already have.

Wrapped in Tara’s embrace, Willow closed her eyes and let her mind revisit the previous day... the anticipation and anxiety she felt while waiting for Tara; the elation at hearing Tara’s voice; the supreme joy of seeing Tara’s face. God, she’s so beautiful…more beautiful than I ever pictured in my mind. With that thought, Willow’s eyes popped open and her brow creased in thought. “Now,” Willow whispered to the quiet room. “Right now.”

Moving slowly, and with great care, Willow disengaged herself from Tara’s hold. Not completely; but just enough so that she could move. Her plan was to turn around, to face Tara. I need to see her. I need to see that she’s here and she’s real. And I need it right now. Willow was determined to watch the beautiful blonde sleep…she just needed to get turned around without waking her. Figuring that she had waited 8 years, another few minutes wouldn’t kill her, Willow continued to ease her way out of the cocoon Tara had her wrapped in. She could feel the slightest twitch from Tara, and when she did, she quickly closed her eyes and held her breath, waiting to see if Tara would wake.

It took Willow nearly 10 minutes to complete her move -- pausing every time Tara threatened to awake -- but she finally did so without incident. Tara remained asleep, her arm still wrapped around Willow. However, this time, rather than being held against Willow’s cheek, Tara’s hand was around Willow’s waist, her fingers lightly resting against Willow’s lower back. Willow could feel those fingers moving against her skin through the t-shirt she wore. Okay, her hand isn’t moving against my back, my back is moving against her hand. Yay for needing to breathe! With her eyes still closed, Willow basked in the feel of Tara's arms around her, and her own arms around Tara. It was definitely a feeling she did not want to relinquish any time soon...or even in this lifetime. A lifetime, Willow thought wistfully. She knew in the deepest part of her heart that a lifetime wouldn't be long enough. For her, anyway. Does Tara feel the same way? Willow closed her eyes and drew a deep breath. Realization flooded through her body. I'll take whatever she can -- or wants -- to give me. She opened her eyes and looked at Tara’s peaceful face. Just as long as she’s in my life…somehow. A tear slid sideways down Willow’s face as she reached out to gently smooth an errant lock of Tara’s hair.

Tara murmured incoherently and snuggled closer to Willow’s touch, irresistibly drawn to the warmth. She pulled herself closer to Willow’s body, cushioning her head on a willingly given shoulder and tightening her arm around a slim waist.

Willow smiled through her tears as she rolled with Tara’s movements, bringing the blonde deeper into the cradle of her arms. She wrapped one arm around Tara’s shoulders, letting her hand come to rest in the curve of Tara’s waist. Willow’s other hand came to rest on the softness of the arm Tara was using to hold her. She rested her temple on the crown of Tara’s head and just…was.

Nothing had ever felt so perfect. Nothing. Ever.

This is what I’ve always wanted, isn’t it? Willow mused as she gently stroked the fine hairs on Tara’s arm. Even before she left, when we were kids, I wanted this. She blushed deeply. Okay, maybe I didn’t have the sexy thoughts when we were kids…didn’t know what sexy thoughts were. But, yeah, I always wanted to be with Tara. To have Tara want to be with me. I’ve always wanted to hold Tara like this…and have her hold me. Warm. Safe. Loved. I never, ever pictured my life without Tara in it, did I? Willow’s eyes grew wide as she continued her gentle touch over Tara’s skin. I took her for granted all these years! I just assumed that she was mine and that she would always want what I want and need what I need…that she would always put me first in her life, ahead of anything or anyone else, like I did with her. And I nearly lost her because of that. Unconsciously, Willow tightened her hold on the blonde and wrapped both arms firmly around the sleeping body. Tears flowed freely.

The body next to her started to shift and she pulled one hand away from the warm flesh to wipe at her eyes. Willow felt the arm around her tighten and lips softly kiss the skin where it peeked out from the collar of her t-shirt. Then she looked down into sleepy blue eyes peering up at her. Her lips automatically curved into a smile at the beautiful site.

“Why are you crying, Willow?” Tara’s voice was husky with sleep.

“I’m sorry, Tare…I didn’t mean to wake you,” she whispered.

Tara leaned up onto one elbow to look into Willow’s eyes. Her arm remained wrapped around the redhead. “Willow, why are you crying?” she persisted.

“I don’t know,” Willow lied.

“Willow…”

Clearly, she didn’t lie convincingly.

“You.” She said it so softly, Tara almost didn’t hear her. Almost.

“Me?” Tara’s eyes widened as much as her sleepiness would allow. Just as quickly, they softened and peered into the green eyes, moist with tears. “I’m so sorry, love.”

Love?! Willow’s heart skipped at least four beats.

“No, Tara, you have nothing to be sorry for,” Willow assured the blonde with a kiss on the forehead. “I’m the one who’s sorry.”

“For what, Will?”

“For expecting you to love me.”

“What?” Tara asked incredulously, moving out of Willow’s arms and sitting up fully next to her forlorn friend. She was fully awake. “What do you mean? You know I love you.”

Willow sat up as well, crossing her legs and resting her elbows on her knees. Her hands played mindlessly with the blanket. She kept her eyes lowered.

“Yes, Tare, I know you love me. You always have, ever since we were kids. You were – are – the best friend I’ve ever had…or ever will have, I’m sure.” At this, she looked at Tara and smirked. “Don’t tell Buffy though, she might get jealous.”

Her attempt to lighten the conversation and ease some of the tension was unsuccessful. Tara simply looked at her, confused.

“I don’t understand, Will,” Tara said, reaching out to lay her hand on Willow’s arm. She squeezed it briefly. “If you know I love you, then why are you sorry?”

“Why do you love me, Tare?” The blonde’s body tensed and her quick intake of breath told Willow that her question caught Tara off guard. She quickly placed her hand over Tara’s and removed it from her own arm. “Wait.” Taking both of Tara’s hands in her own, she looked deeply into her eyes. “Just tell me. First thought that comes to your head. Why do you love me?”

Tara’s brow furrowed as she looked at their entwined hands. She looked back up and answered, “I just do. I always have. It’s who I am.”

Willow let loose a quiet sob as the tears again fell. Of course. She took a breath and leaned forward, softly brushing her lips against Tara’s. Oh that tingles! “Exactly. You just do.”

“I still don’t understand, sweetie.”

Willow laughed quietly and leaned forward to place a kiss on Tara’s cheek. “I love it when you call me ‘sweetie’, by the way.” She thrilled at the blush that caused Tara’s ears to turn a bright pink. “And I love that color on you.” The bright pink became positively fluorescent.

“Will, c’mon.” Tara fought down the rising color and the heat. “Talk to me.”

The smile on Willow’s face remained, but its tone saddened. “You just love me…that’s it.” Tara nodded. “Then why couldn’t I have just taken that and run with it, Tare?”

“Run? I don’t—“

“No you don’t. And that’s the difference between you and me, baby. You love me and you know I love you…and that’s enough. But I expected you to love me…fully…unconditionally.”

“And I do.”

“But don’t you see, Tara? I have absolutely no right to expect it from you. I have no right to expect that from anybody. I have no right to be that demanding. I am not the only person in this world, in your life. You were right…I don’t understand what it means to have others in my life. I was selfish…you were right about that too.” Willow closed her eyes and whispered, “You were right about everything. I didn’t accept your love…I expected it. You didn’t – don’t – deserve that.” Willow stared into bottomless blue eyes, trying desperately to convey the sincerity of what she was saying. “And for that, I am so sorry.” Eyes that, over the last year, she had known would look at her in anger and hatred held only love and compassion. Willow went willingly into Tara’s outstretched arms and held to her tightly.

Willow remained in Tara’s embrace for seconds…or minutes…or hours. She didn’t know. She only knew that she felt safer and more loved than she ever had in her life.

“Thank you, Willow.”

Willow felt forgiven.

“Will?” Willow felt Tara’s finger hook under her chin and lift her head to look into Tara’s eyes once again.

“Yes, Tare?”

“I love it when you call me ‘baby’.”

TBC...

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Frivolous Views


Last edited by GayNow on Mon Sep 26, 2016 11:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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