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

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:04 pm 
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Ms. Moderator Fantastico
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Sigh. I love the way you write. So descriptive:

He did, however, hoard his flaws, like nuts for the winter, keeping them safe and secret.

He quietly cleared his throat, and soft as a lamb’s breath asked, “Are you alright?”

Thoughts of his recent phone call circled lazily in his mind, lingering like day-old baked goods at the grocery store.



I just love those little touches, those subtle nuances, because it really brings it alive for me, colors it in ways I can't describe.

Willow's going home, huh? Wonder what's in store for her. ;-) ;-)

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 1:01 pm 
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6. Sassy Eggs
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Rachel
I'm afraid I'm a poor feedback-er - I think this is the first time I've commented on your fic, but I assure you it's one of the ones I follow whenever I have time to check on the KB.

I like the puzzle in your story, some of which is coming out now. Why is Tara alone? Is she dead? Those questions seem to have been answered, but now we come to: can she go back? and why is Spike (!??) there. Is he dead-er than he was?

I am green with envy for your ability to convey emotion. You seem to do it so easily, with just a few words.

I also like the little descriptive touches throughout.
Quote:
but here he remembered how to relish the wet mornings and early fog. They rooted him, deep and ancient, into the countryside.

This caught my attention. There are many things that anchor us to our land, probably different for each of us, but it is easy to lose the connection in a city or urban existence. This resonated with me, reminding me of the times I've experienced just such a re-connection.

Anyway Rachel, thanks for writing such a beautiful story. I look forward to reading more, especially of the (hopefully) joyful reunion of W&T
Anne

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 1:42 pm 
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2. Floating Rose

Joined: Thu Jan 17, 2008 3:54 pm
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An update! The board has been so quiet this last week I almost missed it. Firstly, thank you for your kind words about my feedback! We could get an endless loop of praise going on here. I actually would like to write a W/T story, but I already spend a lot of my time writing game reviews and I worry that the Buffyverse will accidentally leak into my articles. Hmm, I mean there was a Buffy/Faith story a while back, but now you've got my brain thinking again...

Anyway, your update - so solemn. Poor Giles, he really feels like he's failed Willow as a father? I always felt he only considered Buffy to be a "daughter" but now that I think about it, I guess he would have felt almost as strongly towards Willow too. And Willow certainly would have seen Giles as a father, so why not the other way around?

Thanks Rachel, hope to see more soon

Ems


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 1:58 pm 
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My dear F1,

You already know how I feel about every little thing you've written here, which, by the way, was so wonderfully-detailed and ... evocative. I feel like your writing grew wings, flew up to heaven to get, well... slices of heaven and came down bearing this piece of heavenly pie. Wow... I *really* am sappy, aren't I?

I love Giles as just more than the stuffy British dude in tweed. One of my most favorite scenes in all the years of Buffy was in "Hush" when Willow wrote on the eraser board, "Hi Giles!" And when he went in to hug her... It was an amazingly tender and sweet moment. I love that Giles, and I feel like you captured that one second of greatness and expanded on it. So thanks for that. And for the fic-dedication. You're rockin' the Kittens socks. Or, paw pads? Or, uh, what I mean is, you're doing a fine job, young lady. :) Your F2 is proud.


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:54 pm 
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3. Flaming O
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Hello, Miss Rachel,

Thank you for your compliment, I easily get bored with my avatars and I change them often, hope you'll like some of my next ones.

"Abyss of sound" - yes, I coudn't agree more, it's a very nice phrase, I was actually quoting you, without the marks, sorry for that. :) Well, you write so many cool phrases, you can't be expected to remember all of them, I get that.

Your flashback was fine, I was a little unclear about Tara actually believing that Willow was dead, because she was still waiting for Willow. But yeah, since she knew that she was not in the real Sunnydale, she was entitled to some hope. Makes more sense now, thank you.

So there is a connection leading to Tara, and Willow feels it. Excellent!
And I liked that this update offers some reasons for a question that bugged me about the show: Why didn't Giles get more involved in Willow's lerning magic? She seemed to be on her own in this until Tara came along. Oh, except that episode when her mother tried to burn her at the stake.
Update soon, please, I miss Tara. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 7:05 am 
I have been trying to focus on all the things that have touched me in your new chapter Rachel, particularly on that fundamental experience of human redemption. The scene though, as enacted from what I presume was 'S7 Lessons' based, gravitated nearer to grief than expiation. I feel great justice has been done to Willow's character through this portrayal. What attracted my attention most was the highly-intensified profile you provided on her struggle to move beyond darkness through sweating and toiling. Overarching her efforts came that central invisible part of the pain she feels (Tara) inclusive of Giles as a father-figure in contemplative study.

I loved how you chose to write it complete with its kaleidoscope of colours and emotions

Vi'


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2008 12:43 pm 
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6. Sassy Eggs

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I'm still here.

And I'm still reading.

This whole update really got me. It's just such an awful time for everyone, and Willow has to deal with Tara's death and with the magics and now Giles is going to tell her she has to go back.

It just.... sucks.

You write angst really well. And you write the tender moments even better. Really, really well done.


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2008 4:29 am 
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Why the rush? Does the coven know something about Tara???? :D Very much enjoying your story.

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I am my beloved and my beloved is mine
-- King Solomon's Song of Songs


Only reality can escape the limits of our imagination
-- Rivka Galchen, Atmospheric Disturbances


Man is nothing else but that which he makes of himself
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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2008 6:55 am 
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9. Gay Now
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Hey!

You are doing an amazing job with this story! Great plot line progression and just the right amount of intrigue and anticipation. Plus, Giles as the sweet father-y figure type is so so heart warmy. I love Giles as the father figure... and ooooooooooh! Shock and intrigue! Willow found a connection! I think. Maybe? I hope!

Great update -- and yay Smith! Feel free to questions-galore any old time!

db

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. March 5th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:42 am 
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As promised, a Happy Birthday update to the lovely Foomatic! Wish her well, lots of balloons, cake, and partyhats :)

Hey everyone, sorry for the monster delay. The semester keeps getting busier and busier at it progresses, but I promise as soon as it’s over I can full-scale devote myself to writing this story again. Y’know, and not have anything else to scapegoat… But anyway, thank you all for being so patient and gentle. Means a lot. Without further ado, some overdue feedback and then the update!

Zampsa1975:
Thank you, I hope Willow is strong enough to face Sunnydale, too. Guess we’ll find out!

Paint_the_Sky:
Thank you for your kind words! Really, I’m glad Giles seems right to you. I always thought there was so much more to Giles than the show let on. They kinda showed this whole side to him in the beginning and then forgot about it. I mean, hello? Ripper could have been taken so much further than Ethan Rayne visits once in a while. Sheesh.

Wimpy0729:
I really got such an impact from just the quick snapshots of England in Season 7, and I wanted to impart the physical sensations I felt. It’s amazing how much we can extrapolate with so little. On the KB we’ve made worlds with just the little bits and pieces of Tara we saw, but immediately she’s as real as she was on tv.
I promise to make with the fixing asap. It’ll be a long road until everything is fine and dandy, and it might take a while for me to bring you there, but I promise to do it. I can’t just leave our girls in such a state, now can I?

Foomatic:
Hey there, friend! I can’t tell you how much you reassure me in every thing I do. It gives me a little squishy boost of confidence and means the absolute world to me. I hope you know that. I feel like we’re on the same train here, waiting to see what happens and equally as emotionally invested in it. Thanks for sitting with me on the long ride, keepin’ me company and makin’ it not so scary : ) And again, Happy Happy Birthday!! :balloons

spells42:
Hello, and welcome to the angsty fb that is here! You’re a wonderful feedback-er. It’s what you say, not when you say it that counts, and you coloured me blushed with your kind words. Thank you for reassuring me about emotion convey-ability. I worry sometimes it might be too much, so I’m glad it doesn’t seem that way.
I love that moment when you finally escape the city/suburb life and you realize you’re saturated with nature. It’s such a powerful moment, and it means so much, even if it is small and seemingly insignificant.
So again, thank you for reading and commenting, I hope you enjoy the update.

EmsInNz:
Omg, I know, talk about quiet! It just makes me feel even more guilty for not posting faster when there’s such a long lull on the board. I think he was vocationally more connected to Buffy, but felt equally as connected to all his little kiddies. How could he not? And even if he doesn’t really feel that way, it’s my story so I’ll do what I damn well please with Mr. Giles! Joss be damned! Then again, I guess that’s what the boards all about, huh? :P

katjetson:
Y’know, I feel like I have this extraordinarily high pedestal to fill with everything I write now. Especially because I don’t know exactly what I did to make it that enjoyable, but I’ll do my best. I just hope I can bake s’more ‘heavenly pie’ for you. If not, lemon meringue might have to suffice, k?
And I love it when you fb and tell me all about the moments from the show that resonate and you love, because I get to go back and see what you were talking about and relish those moments too. So thanks.

satinpaper:
*blushes* Well, hey now, I feel like a shmuck for a) not remembering what I wrote and b) forcing you to remind me that I said it in the first place. So….my bad, I hope I don’t say something that dumb again. :P Anyway, thanks for all the supernice things you said, they make me happy. I hope the update makes you happy, even though it’s like a month overdue.

nimloth:
I really do so enjoy reading your comments. They provide so much insight to me and illuminate things to new levels, and I’m very grateful for the heartfelt thinking you must put into it. I love the relationship Willow and Giles seemed to forge, just in the few quick shots we saw of them in England. It’s a shame, they seemed to discard it almost immediately by the time she went back to Sunnydale. It could have been so great. Alas.

taraslove:
Hey there, you. Thanks for being here and still reading. I’m sorry after so long all I do with an update is keeping pounding the hurt in a little more, but I hope when the shit clears the end will be that much sweeter for it. You flatter me, you really do. Thank you so much, my friend. Enjoy.

LittleBit:
Wa-nah-naaah! I’d normally not tell anything, but for the sake of clearing up a few things going on, I’m going to spill and say no, the Coven doesn’t know anything about Tara. Willow is going home because, as Ms. Harkness ever-so-gently broke to Giles, there’s not much more they can do for her in England. But also, the First is on the way and Willow needs to be there and help. Thanks for reading, and enjoy the update!

db:
Ok, phew. I’m always worried that I’m saying lots of words without doing much with them. I’m glad you can tell stuff is still happening and that it goes at a good pace. Whew. Right, that PM….I’m on it. Soon as possible. Thanks for reading and commenting, it’s all so wonderful.


Title: Lotus
Author: Zooeys_Bridge(Rachel)
Email: rsietz@email.smith.edu
Rating: PG(for now)
Disclaimer: Joss and ME own their characters. I’m just adding a little bit of spice. And not making a profit.
Spoilers: This is heavily steeped in canon, so be wary of all of it.
Feedback: Yes, please! This is my first story, so please feel free to scribble away with red pen. It’s highly encouraged.


[center].::Lotus::.[/center]



The afternoon light was heavy with gold as the hours slowly matured into early evening, saturating the air. Shadows stretched across the floor, reaching and crawling under furniture and up walls like a slowly spreading coffee stain(desperate victim). Twilight was coming, and Spike was tired. The sun was sucking all the energy from his bones, gathering enough strength so it wouldn’t crash into Japan as it passed below the horizon.


He sunk deeper into the couch, cushions billowing like clouds, and absentmindedly flipped through a Better Homes & Gardens that had been lying out on the table while Tara fussed about in the kitchen making lunch. It had been hours since either of them had eaten. Eventually Tara wiped her eyes dry at the stubborn insistence of their stomachs. Besides, the crying had to stop eventually.


For one thing, Spike had had enough emotion to last him for another two hundred years as far as he was concerned. But strangely it hadn’t bothered him as much as he thought it would. He felt a strange calm settle upon him like fine silk at the mere recollection. He might not have known where he was-or, for that matter, why he was, but for now, he had a purpose: hold Tara.


So hold her he did.


And he felt strong and good. But their growling hunger had interrupted the lonely spasms of heartbreak, so then came resolve and sandwiches.


He was busy admiring a particularly well organized bathroom arrangement when from the kitchen he heard Tara call, “Spike, do you want regular turkey, or smoked?”


Not bothering to glance up from the magazine, he didn’t miss a beat. “Smoked.”


Spike continued to mindlessly page turn, but the words twisted and blended into a tangle of text. Overcome by a sudden dizzy spell, his head reeled and the magazine fell from his grasp. He vaguely heard another yell, muffled but loud, from the kitchen, “Hey, Pop Tarts or Fruitloops?”


As soon as it began, his nausea ceased, and Spike found himself balanced precariously at the edge of the couch. Trying to shake off the strange feeling, he shouted back, “What are you playing at, Blondie? I said I wanted smoked.”


A moment later, Tara entered the living room carrying two pale blue ceramic plates, toppled high with potato chips and the sandwiches of choice, and a frown plastered on her face. “Spike, who are you talking to?”


He opened his mouth to speak, but shut it abruptly and glanced over his shoulder. Seeing nothing, he turned back around to look at Tara who had sat down across the table and was staring at him worriedly. “Spike?”


Tiny alarm bells rang in the back of his brain, a long-forgotten sensation from his humanity, but he stubbornly ignored them and instead pressed, “So you didn’t offer me breakfast foods just now?”


Tara shook her head, the crease in her forehead furrowing even deeper, “No, I-I didn’t. Are...are you all right?”


Her anxiety is bloody contagious. Broads got enough on her shoulders. Not gonna do her any good worrying about me too.


He let loose a perturbed scowl and shoved her useless concern away instead shoving an open hand towards the tray. “ ’Course I am. Now quit your worrying and give me my meat.”

[center]~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~[/center]



There is a magic, delicate moment, sometime during the inescapable night, when time and space blend together like watercolor.

It had been hours since darkness descended and cast the world into weary shadow, pronouncing the deep tired that seeped into Tara and Spike’s bones. It was an exceedingly draining day, and sleep was long overdue.

As the haze of unconsciousness fuzzed Spike’s mind, he could no longer recall how long it had been since he’d shut the lights, peeled down the sheets, and crawled into bed. Sleep hummed in the back of his brain, pressing behind the eyes like a faint headache. He recalled, somewhat curiously, how foreign the sheets felt, weighing down his feet at the cliff of the bed. The fabric, although soft, seemed laden with starch when texture rubbed against his skin as he turned onto his stomach and flipped the pillow over to the cool side.

How long had it been since he had lain in a bed? It felt alien, having no chilled stone slab beneath him. Despite the warmth of the layers, the mattress remained distinctly cooler, reminding him, even in sleep, where he had come from- a tattoo of cotton.

But this moment, this delicate wire of transubstantiation, soon began to work it’s magic.

In that tissue paper veil that shrouds sleepytime thoughts in embryonic cocoons, Spike disintegrated like paper pulp into a vat larger than himself. Soon, feeling passed beyond sensation and the bed and everything on it ebbed into the ocean of numb. It could have been Dreaming, but there was no sense of self in this place.

No, this was something far greater in which the being known as Spike traveled. It was beyond Space and Time itself.

On and on he tumbled, passing milky nebulas and streaking stars, floating gently through space. It was then that Infinity stretched out with its smoky tentacles, encased him in a haze of possibility and spat him out into the sun.

It was bright, it was sudden, and it sizzled. As the offending pain bored into his flesh, identity smacked back into him like a wet sock and Spike the Vampire was returned to the world.

And there he sat, crumpled up behind a restaurant alley, dumped rather unceremoniously by unknown forces. He stared dumbly at the crust of black-nail polish clinging stubbornly to his cuticles as the voices slowly trickled back into his head. The loudness again overtaking his mind distracted him from the sun while steam slowly started billowing out of the sleeves of his jacket.

His eyebrows furrowed in a weary confusion as a crowd only he could hear pounded in his eardrums. It was familiar, this feeling, and that made him more nervous than anything. Panic grasped him as he raised his head and queried to the empty alleyway, “Mommy?” before his legs crumpled and darkness overtook him.

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:52 am 
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6. Sassy Eggs
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In intriguing update and I enjoyed reading it from Spike's point of view! :D

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Patience is a virtue I have yet to acquire
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I am my beloved and my beloved is mine
-- King Solomon's Song of Songs


Only reality can escape the limits of our imagination
-- Rivka Galchen, Atmospheric Disturbances


Man is nothing else but that which he makes of himself
-- Jean-Paul Sartre


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:59 am 
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19. Yummy Face
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Yay for great update-y goodness... so Spikey is a living undead again? I hope could tell the Scoobies about Tara so they could get her back and make Willow whole again...

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:18 am 
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Another of my current favs gets an update, woo hoo! :pinky

What a great update.

Quote:
Shadows stretched across the floor, reaching and crawling under furniture and up walls like a slowly spreading coffee stain

In that tissue paper veil that shrouds sleepytime thoughts in embryonic cocoons, Spike disintegrated like paper pulp into a vat larger than himself. Soon, feeling passed beyond sensation and the bed and everything on it ebbed into the ocean of numb. It could have been Dreaming, but there was no sense of self in this place.

On and on he tumbled, passing milky nebulas and streaking stars, floating gently through space. It was then that Infinity stretched out with its smoky tentacles, encased him in a haze of possibility and spat him out into the sun.


This was such a lovely chapter to read, the richness in its descriptive narrative painted pictures in my mind. I almost felt as if I was watching it rather than reading it. I could quote the whole of the second part just to emphasise the visual quality of the text, but I’m sure other readers will feel the same way.

Just gorgeous.

I’m starting to formulate an idea as to where Tara might be, but I’ll keep my own counsel on that because I’m more than likely wrong, particularly if she is dead as Spike has said, but its fun to speculate.

I can only hope that Spike has returned to the Sunnydale he left, and that he is reasonably compis mentis to let the Scoobies know what has happened. I'm worried though that the mention of time and space may indicate that he hasn't, or maybe I'm reading too much into that.

Like I said in feedback to another fic, this is a great week for quality updates.

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People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built. Eleanor Roosevelt


Last edited by Paint the Sky on Wed Apr 09, 2008 1:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:50 am 
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Ms. Moderator Fantastico
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Yay! A birthday update? Runny nose and fever be damned! I'm glad you posted this . . . bloody briliant, I say. I love the second half; your descriptions are so lush!

Quote:
In that tissue paper veil that shrouds sleepytime thoughts in embryonic cocoons, Spike disintegrated like paper pulp into a vat larger than himself. Soon, feeling passed beyond sensation and the bed and everything on it ebbed into the ocean of numb. It could have been Dreaming, but there was no sense of self in this place.


Funny enough, this is how I feel right now, sorta . . . yay cold medicine!

You've got a strong foundation here, and a very compelling plot. I know that you worry sometimes that things seem static, but in reality the beauty of your words move the story along, regardless of action or plot. And an update, no matter how tiny or limited, is always gift, especially when it comes from someone as talented as you. Cheers, grasshopper!

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 9:22 am 
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1. Blessed Wannabe

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I’ve been having the worst couple of weeks and then I discover this story. I would gush about how Spike is perfect in it or how from the beginning you’ve had the pacing down to a science or the million other things that I could gush about…but I won’t because you’ve single-handedly ruined my Poutyfest 2008 experience.


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:37 pm 
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6. Sassy Eggs
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This is such an intriguing story. Your descriptions and imagery are wonderful. Can't wait to see where you take us next.


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 10:27 pm 
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My friend, the kittens are in love with the way you write! Do cucumbers help with descriptive storytelling? You never know, they could be a writer's secret weapon!

Quote:
How long had it been since he had lain in a bed?


I have nothing constructive at all to say about this sentence, except "lain" ... what a weird fucking word, huh? I could look at it a million times and it still wouldn't seem right. Stupid English!

You can tell how poor of a beta I am because I have no idea what's going on here. In a matter of a few paragraphs there's talk of meat and then outer space-y stuff. I'm totally confuzzled, absolutely intrigued and rubbing my hands together greedily waiting for more. Seriously Rach, damn beautiful words drip from your fingertips.

Cucumber Power activate!


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 12:12 am 
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Quote:
But their growling hunger had interrupted the lonely spasms of heartbreak, so then came resolve and sandwiches.


What a great sentence :)


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 12:57 pm 
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Oh my, again with the beautiful imagery. WTF is up with Spike? He's tossed from his reality into wherever Tara is and then back. No wonder the bloke is all dizzy. And, he seems kinda sweet here, comforting Tara and not wanting to worry her. But it's interesting how he is sort of the go-between of the two different worlds. Verrry interesting indeed.

Thanks for the update, and hopefully, getting us closer to melding these two realities back together.


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 2:32 pm 
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I, too loved the image of the shadows crawling, especially as a “desperate victim”. It really set the off-balance tone for the chapter (well, and for the story!). Just as the energy sucking sun makes us readers feel the exhaustion that has overcome Spike and Tara. Beautiful opening paragraph, Rach!

I truly, truly loved that holding Tara gave Spike a purpose. I love your Spike and Tara together (it would seem to have been a short-lived, though as who knows where the poor lad is now).

And we get more clues to the nature of the Tara’s place as ‘the shroud of near-death’ thins, if only slightly and briefly. It would seem that the timing is out of sync (dusk with Tara, morning in ‘reality; assuming that whoever asked the breakfast foods question was actually offering them for breakfast and not for dinner!). Spike didn’t steam upon arrival at Tara’s place but is back to vamp in reality (or the fifth dimension beyond sight and sound, wherever he is now!). I love how you are giving us little pieces that really only increase the intrigue.

Thank you for the wicked update!

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:32 am 
Although this is a familiar feature in the process of growth development, you focused on one of its specific aspects that is majorly overlooked – the urges that are part of our human inheritance and which we assume to be dead either symbolically or mentally. I think you’ve conveyed this to perfection with the dissemination of Spike’s longings and emotions. The ‘’mommy’’ whimper delighted me as it revealed his capacity for deep belongingness. Indirectly, you are slowly carving (and showing us) the path towards true faith and this has heightened my interest. Furthermore, with that last bit of metaphorical imagery on non-linear notions, I’m looking even more forward to visiting the ‘’unlived lines’’ in Spike.

As for Tara’s pain, I think there is paradoxically a generous seduction in that.

And oh Rach...excellent writing, really...and masterful exploration of metaphors.
I loved that last update.

Vi'


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 9:26 am 
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10. Troll Hammer
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Ok, months aren't going to pass before FB goes up, so at the very least here's that. I'm working on an update, Friday is my last final so I can actually start writing again, yay!



LittleBit:
Thanks, I hope to provide many more intriguing updates in the future. Thanks for reading and commenting!


Zampsa1975:
I second the getting Tara back. One tiny step at a time, yeah? Thanks for reading and commenting!


Paint_the_Sky:
Quote:
Another of my current favs gets an update, woo hoo!
aww, really? Shucks *blushes*
I was hoping the visuals would come across, it was hard to write, but once it came out I felt it was right. Oooh, ideas? Really? That’s so exciting! Feel free to share if you want. I mean, I won’t ruin the surprise, but who knows? You could spark a whole new plotpoint! Spike is a poor little fish at the end of my sick little string and I plan on playing with him for a while, so enjoy the ride :P Anyway, I’m so glad you’re reading and following along with my little tale.


Foomatic:
I hope by now you’re feeling better. I haven’t asked, but then again you’ve been going to work so I take that as a good sign. Thanks for your reassurance and general everything-ness. Enjoy your day off. I know I am! :P


balveens:
Okay, your comment was the nicest thing anyone could say ever. Really, I’m still all gushy inside even weeks later while reading it. I know how crappy consecutive asstastic weeks can be, and I’m flattered my tale ruined your fun and made it a bit better. It’s also really reassuring to get new readers along the way, especially hearing you say my pacing is good. Because as Foo mentioned, I get really nervous about that. So thanks for making my blush. I hope I keep ruining your Poutyfest 2008. I’ll consider it my goal.


ophelia11:
Omg, really? You’re here? *fangirl geekout moment* God, I adore Yesterday’s Tomorrow. Thank you so much for updating, I’m so glad to see you working on it, even sporadically. And thank you as well for your kind comments, it means so much that you think it’s going well.


katjetson:
Quote:
Do cucumbers help with descriptive storytelling?
That sounds mighty dirty. Let me explain for all those who were curious: we were talking about gardens. And my failed garden as a child that yielded dozens of cucumbers. …..got it? K good.

Also, yeah, English is fucking bizarre. Sometimes I get caught on a word after looking at it for a long time and go “no, that’s not natural. How can o-c-e-a-n be a word?’

Quote:
Cucumber Power activate!
Again, I say this sounds hella dirty. It’s really funny.
Btw, rockin’ update, Buddy.


EmsiNz:
Thank you, I aim to please. Funny enough, I didn’t think much of that when I wrote it but everyone think it’s hot shit. Neat!


Wimpy0729:
Yeah, I’m throwing poor Spike all over the bleedin’ place. He had so much more to give but ME threw the amazing character development they’d been building since Season 4 down the toilet by Season 6. Really a damn shame. I’m trying to redeem him a bit here. I’m glad it’s working. : ) As always, thanks for reading.


masterjendu:
Hey there! * waves * How y’doing? I hope life has been good to you, what with the summer coming and such. The sun finally came out again today, it’s been hiding under rain and cold since Thursday. So I’m a happy camper despite the wave of finals that have finally hit.
I’m glad the subtle clues are obvious, sometimes I worry it’s too hidden. I truly truly love reading your fb, you tell me things about the story I don’t even see. Thanks for making this story even more alive for me. Thank you for being such a good reader.


Nimloth:
Hello, friend! You give me themes to each update. You unite the crazy emotions, scenes, and general mayhem into a united front of caption and metaphor. Thank you. I was worried Spike’s “mommy’ would seem to juvenile or silly, but am relieved to see it conveys something much more important and deeper than that. As always, thank you for you kind words and for reading.

_________________
Lotus


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 6:55 pm 
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3. Flaming O
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Bravo! I'm looking forward to more of this tale, and finding out what the frilly heck is going on with Tara and Spike in their land-without-people.


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2008 12:12 pm 
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6. Sassy Eggs

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So, is he like... a Slider?

(The outta-spacey kinda slider... NOT the hamburgery kinda slider. Cuz, ew.)

Either way, I love the image of Spike reclining on the couch reading Better Homes-n-Gardens. Yeah, he seems like the kind of guy who would appreciate a well-organized bathroom. Totally.

I'm wondering... is he jumping through actual space or is it... more of an alternate reality kind of thing. Could Tara make the jump too? Is she in heaven? Hell? Purgatory? Something else all together?

Huh. Post-bullet Tara eating sandwiches in purgatory with a skitzophrenic vampire.

Your fic truly is one-of-a-kind. Still loving it!


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Tue May 20, 2008 10:24 pm 
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1. Blessed Wannabe

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I hope you were being sarcastic about your goal. Methinks someone so talented should have loftier aspirations.

My interest in this board has dwindled lately but this story keeps pulling me back. I’ve been trying to figure out why and I think I’ve finally got it: There’s something unique about this and it’s not Spike and Tara eating sandwiches together in an alternate dimension (though that is a good one).

This is sophisticated on a level I’ve rarely seen in published works let alone fan fiction. You’re writing style is highly personalized which makes for a much more interesting read.
You’ve somehow circumvented the literary formula that makes most stories good but predictable and it makes this story great.

I’m looking forward to the next installment.

And thank you for using the word “asstastic” in your reply, that made my life, as if your story wasn’t good enough.

_________________
"It looks like Rupert Grint...had sex with a pig that was an alcoholic crack addict while it was prenant. That's what she looks like...This is bullshit. I'm not doing it." - Nate


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 2:28 pm 
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10. Troll Hammer
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Roger Doger:
Thank you! Hey, I'm always looking at your name and wondering if there's a fun story behind it. Is there? Or is it just for fun? I always think of Roger the Rabbit with aviator goggles.

taraslove:
Hmm, 'Slider' is a good word. Big S though, I catch your drift. But now I'm hungry for a burger. mmm. So when you marry this Tara and everything, be prepared to have big house parties with lots of Crazy guests. Big C. I didn't write it in, but her and Spike had a nail painting party. His fingernails are still black, but he let her paint his toenails pink.

balveens:
Hello again! You one-upped yourself in flattery. Really really real. And no, I'm never sarcastic. Ever. Maybe sometimes, but not about this. I'm sorry I'm the one that grabs you back here(as utterly nice as that was to read), because there's really awesome-beyond-awesome stuff here. It all got me started, so I owe it all to those who captured me with their gift of words. So here's hoping I can do the same to someone else. And again, I say you really humble me and I'm honoured you think so much of the story. I don't know how it happens, but I'm glad whatever it is is working. That make sense at all? But I will say I'm glad it's not too predictable. Score! Oh, and I'm a big believer in made-up words. Asstastic, asshat(that's a current favorite), craptastic, the list goes on. Also, I'm not afraid of talking about poop, so that goes into it as well.


Lucky posting timing, Balveens-the-booster, because an update is coming up shortly.

_________________
Lotus


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 2:40 pm 
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10. Troll Hammer
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I'd just like to say again, the outpouring of support and kindness has been overwhelming. I'm truly touched and honoured to be in the company of such good folk. Really really.


Title: Lotus
Author: Zooeys_Bridge(Rachel)
Email: rsietz@email.smith.edu
Rating: PG(for now)
Disclaimer: Joss and ME own their characters. I’m just adding a little bit of spice. And not making a profit.
Spoilers: This is heavily steeped in canon, so be wary of all of it.
Feedback: Yes, please! This is my first story, so please feel free to scribble away with red pen. It’s highly encouraged.
Note: Thanks to Kat for getting my butt into gear and everyone who's sent me a pm of sorts lately, it means a bunch. *pats chest*



[center]::Lotus::[/center]



Passing white daisies, taking turns
Close the door walk to the street
Catching raindrops on your tongue
And for a minute it all stops
But it won’t last man, just a passing moment gone

Please slow it down
There’s a secret place that I know
If I could a dig a grave I’d then climb underground for good
And all I wanna do is turn around

:: Rocky Votolato, White Daisy Passing::



It was strange, really, the things coming to England had brought- endless dark dreams and night sweats, driving on the wrong side of the road, deep meditations, British slang. But none struck Willow as more odd than adding milk to tea as she sat cushioned in an armchair, cradling a forgotten mug in her lap.



Despite Giles’ insistence that tea was the all-time-cure for any ailment(an emotional band-aid of sorts) Willow never indulged in the drink. Instead, she preferred a hot, hearty mocha to stir up the blood in her veins. During the later than late nights of demon research at the Magic Box, a balmy liquid didn’t appeal to her as much as the sugar-rich coffee. Truth be told, she never wanted to be soothed by a quiet cup of tea because there was always the worry of unwinding too much in the face of danger. No, the self-appointed demon researcher couldn’t afford respite in tea. Mocha was thick, heavy with caffeine, and necessary to avoid relaxation. In the Scooby world, nothing was more dangerous than getting too comfortable.



Besides, Tara was always the one to drink tea and she drank enough for the both of them. Her and Giles often shared an affinity for a midnight cup of chamomile and hushed conversation. In the midst of various research, Willow would secretly watch while the two sat on the second floor overhang, reveling in the magic moment of people she loved together in harmony. Willow had no need for tea, she had Tara- more perfectly tranquil and steeped than any beverage.



Willow cupped her mug tightly, creating a loose warmth, as though the smooth-as-teeth porcelain might transport her back to such nights. Her legs remained numbed and forgotten, folded beneath her, when the door to the cottage cracked open and ushered in a very wet Ms. Harkness.



Her hair hung in ringlets, matted to her neck and face, while water continued to drip from the tips. Peeling off her jacket, Ms. Harkness hung it on the hook next to the door and valiantly attempted to make some semblance of order out of her tangled hair.



While precariously balancing on one leg trying to yank a boot off, Ms. Harkness glanced over her shoulder to see the still shape of Willow lost in thought. She grinned as the offending item was finally removed and celebrated by jolting her charge out of the subtle, yet ever-present melancholy.



”I should think that tea is quite cold by now, wouldn’t you agree?”



Willow jumped and threw an arm over the chair so she could view her mentor. Noticing the woman’s disheveled state, Willow flung into action, clunking the forgotten mug on the table in her haste. Concern immediately flooded her features. “Ms. Harkness, why are you- is everything all right? Was there a storm? Are you hurt? Are you okay?”



“Willow, dear, I’m quite alright, thank you. Although I do believe my umbrella has died a most violent death, I seem to have escaped with a mere soaking. How lucky of me.”



Willow’s fussing dimmed and her shoulders sagged with a noticeable relief. A soft “Oh,” escaped her lips.



“I do believe I’ve braved far worse weather in this countryside than a mere rainstorm. Thought there was that one time years ago during a veritable monsoon and a bottle of, what was it now, Sambucca?”



Ms. Harkness, having trailed off, stood and squinted at the far wall with fond memories. Willow, in the meantime, stared back with an equally squinty, yet curious expression. “Ms. Harkness?”



“Hmm?”



“Ms. Harkness.”



“What? Oh yes. Never mind that. Another story for another time, hmm?” Ms. Harkness motioned for them to sit.



“Willow,” she said and waited for her to meet her gaze. “I assume that since this is the first time you’ve missed dinner in quite some time, Rupert has finally told you.”



Willow didn’t trust her voice. Instead, she nodded and looked at the floor.



“One of us was going to tell you last week, but he came to me and requested to do it himself.”



It was all right, after all. Willow had supposed this moment was coming ever since she arrived at the Coven. As much as she longed to stay forever and never go back, a part of her always knew it had to end.



Then again, she’d never expected to stay for so long. A part of her believed she’d be thrown out after only a few days. Hopeless. Useless. A lost cause. Too evil to be bothered with. She had even packed her bags one morning, but instead of a taxi, she was greeted with hot breakfast.



“But how?”



Ms. Harkness crinkled her forehead in confusion, “Sorry dear, what?”



Damn.



She didn’t even realize she’d spoken, but it was impossible to backtrack now.



She’d never told anyone before, not the group, not the Coven, not even Ms. Harkness or Giles, but there was something that lurked deep within the shadows. Willow would feel it crawl under her skin, up her neck, and in her fingers. It was everywhere. And it oozed. All the time. Always. Everywhere.



It wouldn’t have been so terrifying if it came unawares, but The Black struck when she was most focused; it was in the hum when she meditated and the roots when she was at the tree. It grabbed her down like a tide too strong and drowned her in the darkness until she was no more. Giles had been there a few times, but she had a sprinkling of bruises up and down her body for all the times he hadn’t. It scared the shit out of her.



“How,” her voice cracked, “am I supposed to go back with all this blackness inside of me?”



“Willow.”



So wrapped up in her fear, she didn’t register that Ms. Harkness had sat next to her and grabbed her hands in her own. “Willow, look at me.”



Numbly she made eye contact, the hot tears that welled made everything blurry. She could barely make out Ms. Harkness.



“You, my dear, are a very special witch. That darkness? It is a remnant. Of the things you’ve done, of the lessons you’ve learnt. Had you given into it, you wouldn’t feel it at all. It is remorse, it is guilt, it is regret. For everything that has happened and everything that now will be. Embrace it, Willow. It makes you human.”



Willow knew she was human, this was no surprise. But after everything she’d learnt on the Hellmouth, being human made you no better than a demon. It just made you worse. Because humans have a choice. And she had made that choice anyway. She gave into it, that darkness, that evil. Sometimes it just seemed easier to end it. A few times she nearly had.



But something smooth, hard, and warm stood in her way. Willow looked down and found the cup of tea in her hands. When had she grabbed it? The tea of midnight, of chamomile, and whispers. The tea of Tara. Willow gripped the mug tighter and resolve bubbled to the surface.



A great glow of Tara infused her. Willow was the water and Tara was the tea. She soaked up the moment, letting Taratea seep into her bones. Willow knew it wouldn’t last long, it never did, but for now? For this minute? It was enough. Willow breathed through her nose and looked back at Ms. Harkness.



So be it.




“When do I pack?”


[center]~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~[/center]


The heat was disgusting. This particular summer had ushered in that special heat that even a good cold shower can’t fix; the second you’re dried off, the sticky heat comes back with a vengeance.



Clem wiped his brow and felt beads of perspiration ooze from the 387 separate gland zones on his body, and wished he’d settled somewhere farther east. Where there were four seasons. And where it was cold six months out of the year. Five of which involved snow.



Mmmm, snow.



Clem frowned and tried to push images of white-capped trees and mittens out of his head. Instead, he pinched his soaking, oversized t-shirt in a vain attempt to let it air out. He felt more than conscious sitting in a pool of sweat, but was somewhat comforted knowing his companions were equally plagued. Three straight hours of poker in the back of Willy’s Pub could do that to a demon. Hell, it would do that to anyone, demon or otherwise.



Employing a self-control he didn’t realize he possessed, Clem managed to keep his fidgeting to a minimum while the table finished their hand. The last card had barely touched the table when he pushed his chair back and slapped his hands on the table. “Well, fellas, this’s been fun and all, but I’m thinking a break is in order. Think we can call ten?”



Various hisses, snorts, and whistles replied. “Great, thanks. Oh, and Mike? I have those cockroaches I owe you, just left them in my car. Thanks for the loan, buddy,” he called back as he hovered in the rear doorway.



Business taken care of, Clem turned to face the night. His shoulders sagged in relief as the cooler air in the alleyway nipped at his flesh. His perspiration was bordering on unsanitary, so he took out the small towel he’d decided to carry with him and sopped up the unsightly mess of his glistening skin.



“I bet its fifty degrees and raining in Massachusetts. Why didn’t I listen to Mother? She warned me but nooo, I just had to ‘go to west young demon’,” he grumbled as his folded the cloth and put it back into his pocket. He sighed and looked up at the sky. The industrial orange glow of Sunnydale cast itself into the heavens, but a few stars managed to twinkle at him in the distance. Clem waved back, and was mid-swing heading back inside when something glittered and caught his eye. Naturally, he followed the shiny.



“Oh, no.”



Moonlight danced off silver buckles on a pair of black boots sticking out from behind a dumpster. Attached to the boots lay a very unconscious Spike.



As he crept closer, Clem immediately became concerned with the cuts and wounds that littered Spike’s body. Parts of his leather jacket had melted onto his skin, which made visible the red and blistering burns that seemed to still sizzle. A deep gash was on the cheekbone under his eye and looked like something had nibbled on it for dinner. “This is not a good place for you, buddy,” Clem grimaced and knelt down to pick up his friend. He grunted as he hoisted Spike onto his shoulders and staggered under the weight.



Clem had since redecorated the place he was supposed to crypt-sit. As the months went by, it hadn’t seemed like Spike was returning, so he’d made himself comfortable. Twisting around, he racked his brains for another location. Somewhere safe. Away from prying eyes. And daylight. Especially daylight.



Bingo.



The card game and cockroaches forgotten, Clem set forth with heavy cargo and an idea. “All right, let’s pray that new high school’s up to code. I hope it doesn’t collapse again. That would just be… unpleasant.” He clambered on, footsteps fading into the distance and silhouette into the mist as night swallowed them up in one big gulp.

_________________
Lotus


Last edited by Zooeys_Bridge on Fri Nov 07, 2008 6:26 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 2:55 pm 
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5. Willowhand
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2007 6:19 pm
Posts: 340
YessaDibs!

I gave you all my F2 love this morning, but you deserve some public words of adoration for your return to Lotus.

Everything here is moving along nicely and I feel like we're gonna get some answers. We're all clamoring for some answers. I say you start charging people on the sly and make some college bucks for yourself. It's better than going the "Girls Gone Wild pt. 72" route. Or, is it...?

I love that the action of Willow drinking tea brought fond memories of Tara and the Scoobies to the surface. She needs a little of that, huh? I miss her with Tara, obviously, but I also just miss her with her friends. Such loneliness throughout your tale. Maybe throw in a parade or bowling or strip poker next update?

As always, Rach, sweet imagery, total angst-y heartbreak and lovely storytelling throughout. I expect moremoremore now that you're on summer break. Unless, of course, you find yourself in that circumstance we spoke about the other day. In which case, see you in the fall...


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2008 4:16 pm 
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Ms. Moderator Fantastico
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I swear to God, Grasshopper, you are something else. A good kind of something else, a great-fantastomatic kind of something else, even.

I loved the connection with the tea and Tara, and especially how you brought it full circle at the end of the conversation with Ms. Harkness. But my real question is: is Taratea chock full of antioxidants and can it help prevent cancer? If so, I'll have a huge helping please. ;)

I'm always in awe of how much depth there is in your writing, whether it be character, plot, dialogue . . . it's so richly layered, like a really good 7 layer dip. I loved the corrollation of Willow's darkness to being human . . . everything we do is part of who we are, and who we become.

Quote:
“I bet its fifty degrees and raining in Massachusetts."


Heh, a little RL thrown in there? (*Pssst . . . . it is fifty degrees, remember our it's and its?) ;)


And I forgot to ask this before, but . . . Sambucca? Of all the delectable liquors out there you chose Sambucca? I think Ms. Harkness is singlehandedly keeping them in business, cause I don't know anyone else who'll touch that stuff with a ten foot pole . . .

But I digress. I suppressed the urge to through a tantrum in the corner, mind you, I didn't want to waste my time and energy when I could be reading this wonderful update. As always, great job, and hurry up and write the next part already.

_________________
Foo

Kisses and Gay Love
"I like my buttons, curvy." - Willow, Neverland, by Easiersaid


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 Post subject: Re: Lotus ((Updated Wed. April 9th))
PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2008 12:40 am 
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19. Yummy Face
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Yay for good update-y goodness... I hope the Scoobies are soon informed about the return of Spike so they could get info about Tara just in time for Willow to get her meaning of life back...

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